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Northern CA Saltwater

San Francisco Bay boats got back out to the Farallones

BY CAPT. DAVID BACON/WON Staff WriterPublished: Jan 02, 2019

BERKELEY — Weather was an issue for much of the week, but late in the week and over the weekend, San Francisco Bay boats were again able to target rockfish and Dungeness as far out as the Farallon Islands. Herring showed at Richmond Marina and should be back soon.

freshthresherFRESH THRESHER — Harrison Liu of San Francisco caught an 85-pound thresher shark while fishing for rockfish at the Farallon Island with Capt. Jonathan Smith aboard the Happy Hooker.

Offshore, weather dominated the week as boats struggled to put consecutive days together. Great news was when the fleet was able to return to the offshore grounds where both Dungeness crab and rockfish were in abundance.

Friday was the first post-Christmas day the fleet was able to make it offshore. From Fish Emeryville, New Huck Finn, Salty Lady and Tigerfish combined for a total of 103 limits of assorted rockfish and 960 Crab. Andy Guiliano at the landing said, “The Farallon Islands remain the primary target destination for rockfishing and anywhere outside 25 fathoms west of the Golden Gate for the crab. We are offering a limited schedule of crab and sanddab trips for those who wish to load up on the tasty flatfish. Rockfish re-opens April 1, 2019. Overall it was a fantastic combo season and with high numbers of small, sub-legal sport crab in the pots, anglers should look forward to a productive 2019. Next stop for us is the Sacramento ISE Jan. 17-20 at Cal Expo in Sacramento.”

Scott Sutherland at Berkeley Charter Boats reported limits of rockcod and crab on El Dorado and New El Dorado III over the weekend (68 combined limits). Those were the only two trips all week. Sutherland said, “We’ll run crab-only trips in January. A couple skippers are planning sturgeon trips this winter. Should be a few around.” Other boats based out of Berkeley, like California Dawn and Happy Hooker were quiet over Christmas week.

At Fisherman’s Wharf, Bass Tub skipper Capt. Aaron Anfinson said he would be running some bass and sturgeon trips. Capt. Craig Hanson on Argo has been running bass and sturgeon trips up in San Pablo Bay and has turned in some solid scores.

Herring showed up at Richmond Marina and folks were quick to catch some for bait or dinner. Ed Lu at Bay Tackle in El Cerrito reported that the schools of fish were holding deep, just out of casting net range off of Richmond Marina, but are expected to move back in to spawn with the full moon.

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