(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.