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Northern CA Freshwater

Eureka: Jetties provide good fishing

Crescent City gets a herring spawn

BY CAPT. DAVID BACON/WON Staff WriterPublished: Feb 13, 2020

EUREKA — Eureka anglers had good luck fishing the north and south jetties for a variety of fish while the lagoons held hungry trout and gave people someplace calm to fish. Many North Coast residents, however, gathered at Crescent City where the annual herring spawns were underway.


THE ANNUAL HERRING spawn inside the Crescent City Harbor is a big deal for those after bait for later in the season, but it’s also a lot of fun for youngsters to get in on the fishing action. As of Jan. 8 large schools of herring were in the harbor spawning. PHOTO BY ANDY MARTIN OF WILD RIVERS FISHING

Fishing inside Humboldt Bay through the week, along both the north and south jetties produced some pretty good fishing for perch. Both redtail and striped perch bit, along with black rockfish and cabezon, which are legal for shore-based anglers to catch and keep in the offseason when boaters and kayakers cannot target them.

WON Field Reporter Lonnie Dollarhide said, “The perch were biting on shrimp and the snappers bit the squid. We had a good size swell again this week so anglers couldn't hit their favorite spots where the lingcod are. Local lagoons produced trout using worms and Power Bait floated just off the bottom. With all local rivers in good shape for winter steelhead, not a lot of people were fishing the saltwater.”

Fisherfolk from Eureka and most North Coast communities and rural areas made the trek to Crescent City to get in on what so far has been the best herring spawn anywhere along the California coast. On Friday the big herring run in Crescent City hit full stride. Anglers in both boats and kayaks loaded up on the herring. Then on Saturday the herring moved in close to the docks and jetties so that families enjoyed fun and rewarding days of catching them from shore and the docks. Shore anglers used rod and reels with Sabiki rigs and anglers on boats tossed cast nets. In the harbor the herring are easy to find, all you have to do is find the seals and sea lions working the big schools. That would be where to lower a Sabiki or toss a cast net.

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