Category Archives: halibut

Stripers, Stripers, Stripers!

Smiling woman holding large striped bass on a boat

Striped bass are biting in San Pablo Bay


(February 15, 2018 newsletter) If our trips were recorded on a vinyl record it would be repeating stripers, stripers, stripers. The beat goes on: Throughout January, and now mid-way through February, incredible bass catching is the highlight most days. The only element putting a damper on the bite is an occasional wind filled session.

The early January rainfall that brought sturgeon activity to the surface has waned with the lack of precipitation over the past few weeks. It also allowed a few more sharks and bat rays to infiltrate San Pablo Bay. Many anglers enjoy catching a shark or two, they’re cute and released unharmed, while the rays, up to 50lb., will put up a battle.

A good soaking will be the determining factor as to when real sturgeon productivity materializes again. Looking at the bright side, clear water and schools of roaming bass will make for some interesting light-tackle trolling in March.

Another bonus may be an early start to halibut in San Francisco Bay. If currently catching many, mostly undersize, halibut in the upper bay is any indication we should be trolling right now.

Our halibut trips will start in earnest when the Argo returns after a week of annual maintenance in mid March. There’s no reason to believe we shouldn’t be on the fish right away. It’ll likely be a matter of weeding through the halibut to find 22-inch keepers.

Until the early March haul out Argo will be sitting on the anchor in San Pablo Bay. This is a very pro-active fishery that requires angler participation to succeed. The payoff is generally lots of bites and unending surprises on the end of the line.

If you’re not an early riser this fishery is just your ticket. Start times are varying to match the optimum portion of the tide. So shove off time may be as late as 9:30. Call to find a day that fits your schedule.






  (Dec. 27, 2017 newsletter) – The Argo’s annual year-end “Not So Weekly Newsletter” can’t bury the lead so we have to start with the continued outstanding striped bass action in San Pablo Bay. It’s often continuous bites with near-prefect weather conditions forecast through the end of the year. To top it off, sturgeon areContinue Reading

Winter Migration

(Nov. 30, 2017 newsletter) — The modus operandi has transitioned to a more sedentary delivery, but success is still predicated on attention to detail. With striped bass willing to bite, and sturgeon now on the prowl, the action is keeping anglers on the their toes in San Pablo Bay. Even on the sluggish tides, when theContinue Reading

Salmon Fantastic

(August 24, 2017 newsletter) — It may be fair to say 2017 is the year of the salmon. It’s quite obvious the fish did not get the memo from government “officials” of dire straits and a depressed season. No doubt we have groups like Golden Gate Salmon Assoc., Coastside Fishing Club and Golden Gate Fisherman’sContinue Reading

Lighting up the Bay

(April 26, 2017 newsletter) After nearly two weeks of pampering the Argo is ready to come off dry dock and back to work. With improvements and upgrades ranging from the tip of the tower to below the waterline we’re expecting a hastening to the vessel’s gait. On the fishing front, the past week has seenContinue Reading

Transition Time

(March 14, 2017 newsletter) — The transition is just about upon us…After three months of quite successful upper bay sturgeon and striped bass chasing, it’s nearly time to reverse direction. The Argo is certainly not giving up on the upper bay, we’ve found solid action in the past week, but halibut will soon be callingContinue Reading

Fall Fashion

In the past few weeks the Argo has been all over the chart. Running along the Marin coast for salmon and rockfish; up the bay for striped bass and halibut, and down bay to battle leopard sharks and other toothy bottom dwellers…Next week we’re heading west to the Farallon Islands. Most interest has been placedContinue Reading

Total Cooperation

The Argo has been very busy chasing a variety of species ranging from sharks in the bay, to salmon well beyond the Golden Gate. Fortunately, almost everything is biting in one form or another and generally eating well enough to keep everyone satisfied. Salmon have remained in a cooperative mood off the Marin coastline forContinue Reading

Take Your Pick

We finally reached that eclectic time of year when nearing anything is possible. Pick your poison and take your chances…Salmon are hanging off the Marin coast in seemingly better that expected numbers. In typical salmon fashion the success rate varies from day to day, but overall the Argo has averaged a fish per rod orContinue Reading

Big water, skinny water

For the past couple weeks the Argo has been concentrating on halibut inside the bay. Overall success has been solid with fish ranging into the 20-pound class. On the flip side, there’s an abundance of undersize halibut swarming the shallow bay flats. This is not a bad thing considering it gives everyone practice adjusting toContinue Reading