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February 21, 2018    Headlines

Winter Bass and Sturgeon

The Bays:

By Dave Hurley

The wind was the story over the weekend with heavy breezes on Sunday 2-18 keeping almost all but the most fool hardy boats off of San Pablo Bay. There were a few sturgeon landed by private boats on Saturday, but the action wasn’t hot and heavy by any means.

Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle in San Rafael said, “The wind was horrible on Sunday, but it slowed down to around 10 knots on Monday. There haven’t been too many anglers out, but it seems that the striped bass are becoming scarcer, but they are still in the bay. We will have live mud shrimp in the shop on Thursday, and this always brings out fishermen from throughout northern California.”

With the lack of fresh water moving through the bays we are seeing more crabs and fewer sturgeon. There are still good numbers of stripers being taken in San Pablo bay but bring lots of bait to feed to the little bait stealers.
Tides are less than ideal but improve in size later this week. Captain Don Franklin on the Soleman out of Fisherman's wharf reported three shaker sturgeon in the 3' class and three keeper bass to 6 pounds. Don says the bite will turn up with the bigger tides.
  Keith Fraser of Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle reported Sunday 2-11, “If you want wind, we have it here in San Pablo Bay as the boats came back in by early afternoon with winds to 30 mph in the late afternoon. There wasn’t much going on in the bay over the weekend as it was windy both days. We have live mud shrimp in the shop with more on the way. There have been some reports of bat rays moving in, and there are also reports of crab stealing bait off of the McNear’s Pier.”
In the Napa River, Danny Sinkay proved once again that even a blind squirrel can find a nut by pulling an allnighter in Napa Slough with Alexys Magowen and her 6-year old nephew. Magowen hooked into an oversized sturgeon on striper gear, and Sinkay had to release anchor and drift with the fish, eventually getting tied up in the anchor line of another boat. After winding the rod and line through the anchor rope while keeping his boat off of the anchored vessel, Sinkay was able to get the 8-foot sturgeon up to the side of the boat before the hook straightened out. Sinkay had purchased a 3.5-foot Shakespeare rod for the young nephew, John Clements, and wouldn’t you know it, a legal sturgeon hit the bait and the small rod, and Sinkay and the young boy did their best to bring in the sturgeon.

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