Umarex Gauntlet


Central CA Saltwater

Monterey: Some salmon caught near Monterey

Moss Landing long-range trips haul huge reds

BY CAPT. DAVID BACON/WON Staff WriterPublished: Aug 01, 2019

MONTEREY — There were decent catches of salmon, both on the troll and by mooching, throughout Monterey Bay and huge vermillion came readily on long-range rockfish trips out of Moss Landing. The halibut bite continued for skiff fishers.

Salmon fishing ranges from challenging to easy street for Monterey and Moss Landing boats. On charter and partyboats, customer preference sometimes defines a trip. A good example of that was a salmon trip aboard Kahuna that resulted in a salmon per rod plus other catches.

STEVIE ANDERSON OF Zayante came down out of the Santa Cruz Mountains to fish his regular spot on the stern the party boat Kahuna out of Moss Landing and was able to mooch up an early limit of bright fat kings. The fish were 25 feet down in the deep water off the Soldiers Club. Multiple hookups kept both skipper Brian Cutting and deckhand Josh busy with this close to the surface big fish action. Photo by Jeff Goyert

Capt. Carol Jones at Kahuna Sportfishing said, “Our private charter of 6 guys, who met up from all over the country (Florida, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Nevada), landed 6 king salmon in the early morning and didn’t want much more so they did a little rockfishing and landed some nice rockfish and a cabezon. They were going to feast on a variety of fish that evening. They were back to the dock at 1 p.m., with some fish tales to tell when they get home.”

Private boats each day made decisions about what to target because salmon and halibut were both on the fishing menu. Drifting with squid or mackerel just offshore was reasonably effective for halibut and bounce-balling with purple haze hoochies was even more effective, but much harder work for the angler.

Rockfish trips for boats from Chris’ Sportfishing and J & M Sportfishing in Monterey pretty much all scored limits of rockfish and the size of the average fish went up, the farther down the coast the weather and time would allow. Caroline, New Horizon and other boats had a few lingcod on top of limits of rockfish.

A late-week, long-range trip on Kahuna told the tale well. Capt. Brian Cutting said he found a spot in deeper water, around 300 feet near Lopez Point where the fish were up off the bottom and as soon as everyone got down, they had bent rods. Capt. Cutting said, “Anglers with 2 hooks came up with 2 big vermilion weighing in from 6 to 9 pounds each.....sometimes its better or should I say easier on the arm to fish with one hook!” Rolando Camangon, Will O., and Willy Pascua each had one or more reds that went 8 pounds or better. Most anglers had fish over 6 pounds.

Surf fishing was enhanced by a striper bite. The bass have been gorging on anchovies and mackerel and hitting topwater lures with gusto, according to Jacob De Leon.

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