First Person: Bob Wallace's King Salmon

First Person Report: 48-Pound king comes at last minute of trip

BY BOB WALLACE/Special to Western Outdoor NewsPublished: Oct 12, 2018

The beginning of October began with much cooler temperatures, a big pressure change, and a decent push of rain! The sudden shift in weather caused salmon on the Sacramento River to be scarce at the beginning of the week. Well known Guides like Dave Jacobs of Dave Jacob’s Guide Service had still been managing quality fish daily back bouncing roe in deep holes.

By Monday morning Billy Driessen with Driessen’s Guide Service had found easy limits back bouncing eggs, landing a few jacks in Ord Bend after running down from Hamilton City. But the incoming weather changed everything. Rain hit at 9:00 a.m. and by 11:00 a.m. you couldn’t see a salmon jump, or show on the fish finder, and other boaters on the water all gave thumbs down like the fish had vanished.

BOB WALLACE WAS fishing with friend and fishing guide Guide Billy Driessen of Billy Drissens Guide Service and went hours without a fish before finally haing this truly huge 48-pound king salmon slam a lure for Wallace.

At 12:00 noon, Driessen put the boat on the trailer in Hamilton City and picked me up, his long time friend and fishing partner, and hauled to Woodson Bridge RV Park and launched in search of fish that had pushed up. Hole after hole, we back bounced eggs all the way back down to Hamilton City boat launch leaving us scratching our heads wondering where all our fish had gone!

3:00 p.m. — We switched to spinning gear and started working back to Woodson Bridge, boondogging (side drifting) each hole on the way up all the way to Deer Creek above the bridge without ever having a single bite.

6:00 p.m. — Completely flabbergasted at this point, unable to put a bite together, and with the sun fading, Driessen made the decision to run upriver about halfway to the Los Molinos bridge. Under pressure, with the sun fading, Driessen picked a deep point with fast white water and a deep lazy back eddy and wrapped two Luhr Jenson K16 - Kwikfish in White and chartreuse to account for the heavy cloud cover. Paired with 3 ounces of weight and an Elite Styx - HS 806 Fast-Med/Heavy custom built rod for me, we back bounced our plugs back for the last 10 minutes of the day.

6:48 p.m. — Two minutes before sundown and nearing the end of the run that they were fishing, despair had finally set in. Every angler feels it, Captains and weekend warriors alike. The old saying goes, “That’s why it’s called fishing and not catching!”

Suddenly I bellows out “I got him!” and the fight was on!

7:00 p.m. — The fish hit the deck and we both stared in disbelief, hardly able to fathom what had just happened. Measuring 46.5 inches long by 27.25 inches wide and weighing in at 48 pounds it was a monster king. Driessen and I have both been fishing king salmon on the Sacramento and Feather Rivers for over 20 years and it was the biggest either of us had been a part of landing!

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