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Northern CA Saltwater Fishing Report

Good Eureka crabbing is standard fare, a rockfish research trip was a bonus

BY CAPT. DAVID BACON/WON Staff WriterPublished: Jan 16, 2012

EUREKA — Capt. Tim Classen ran two crab charters on Wednesday out of Eureka aboard his Reel Steel for easy limits, finishing off his crab season in grand style. He feels it is now time to give way and stay out of the way of the hard-working commercial guys who are just starting their season and filling the sea with traps and buoys. Meanwhile, private boaters worked inside the bay and found crabbing to be good.

The Reel Steel fished Thursday, for rockfish, on a research trip for a group from Santa Cruz who’s focus was female yellowtail rockfish. The goal was to catch 30, but conditions made it difficult and not quite that many were caught.

WON Field Reporter, Lonnie Dollarhide, was aboard the research trip and explained, “It was tough fishing today with the ripping current, we had to use 2 pounds of weight to stay close to the strike zone.” That strike zone was 300 feet deep and shrimp flies were the preferred meal of the fish caught.

Dollarhide shared a good story from the trip, “On our last drift, Brendan Leman from Santa Cruz hooked a female yellowtail, then this big lingcod grabbed the yellowtail as a hitchhiker. We brought it aboard, got a couple of pictures, then released the big lingcod unharmed.”

Shoreside, jetty anglers working the ocean side of South Jetty scored improved counts of red tail perch this week. Squid was the most common bait.

Rain is in the forecast this week which bodes well for steelhead fishing in rivers including the Eel, Mad, Klamath, Mattole and Chetco.

The Longfin Tackle Shop
The Longfin Tackle Shop