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Northern CA Saltwater

Salmon close in and groundfish to the south for Half Moon Bay boats

BY CAPT. DAVID BACON/WON Staff WriterPublished: Oct 10, 2018

HALF MOON BAY — There is a combination of wild salmon and pen-reared hatchery salmon within a quick run of Pillar Point Harbor in Half Moon Bay and even right inside the harbor where they were easy to get to. Some of the partyboats took people to points south to load up on rockfish and pull a few lingcod.

jackyskingJACKY’S KING — Jacky Kasheta of Union City caught her 17-pound king salmon on an anchovy during a trip aboard the Huli Cat out of Pillar Point Harbor in Half Moon Bay. The ocean was nice with a small, rolling swell, making for a nice fishing day.

“Salmon are going off again in Half Moon Bay,” said Sherry Ingles of Half Moon Bay Sportfishing, enthusiastically, adding, “A guy came in to the shop and said guess what? I told him he had just caught a salmon and he asked how I know. I told him because he smelled like a fresh salmon. There is just a certain smell that salmon have and it is easy to recognize.”

Riptide went out with 7 guys and returned with full limits of salmon, all caught within a half-mile of harbor. New Capt. Pete also made a successful salmon run. Many of the skiff and kayak anglers have been fishing right outside the harbor entrance or even inside where the water is calm, enjoying a cold beverage or thermos of hot coffee and hooking into salmon for the dinner table. Locals feel that this is a fantastic opportunity, thanks to the Coastside Fishing Club’s program and the action is likely to continue right until salmon season ends.

Rockfish action was excellent down the coast, even with bumpy water and big winds for Huli Cat, Queen of Hearts and Riptide. Favored reef zones were near martin’s Beach, San Gregorio and Pescadero. The word “limits” was a common refrain among partyboat scores. Lingcod were taken, though the counts were fairly low. Some of the successful anglers aboard Huli Cat were Hannah Singletary with a large olive rockfish, deckhand Mike Juanes with a 3-pound red and Anil Kumar with a 5-lb. lingcod and 2-pound copper rockfish.

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