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2018 AOTY/DOTY Entry

Topic: Elk Tourney a Huge Success!!!  (Read 8429 times)

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  • Sea Lion
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  • View Profile Kunz's Reel Rods
  • Date Registered: Dec 2004
  • Posts: 2408
Since I'm sure the inquiring minds want to know, I'll give you a snapshot of what happened at the tourney.  Others will chime in with more detail to share their thoughts and experiences and photos later today and tomorrow I'm sure.

First of all, hats off to Sean and Leah White for organizing such a smashingly successful tournament in such a gorgeous part of the north coast.  Aside from the gopher infested lawn area, the accomodations were excellent, the food was great, and the company and fellowship was outstanding as well.  Thanks also, to the Elk Community center.  Such a nice facility... couldn't have been better.  

So... here's the good stuff.  Weather was good... overcast but not foggy and only a slight breeze.  The ocean was a little lumpy but totally fishable and the shore break on the beach was small.  We had about 40 kayaks on the water!!!  

The winner, with a 23lb Lingzilla was Brian (bsteves).
Coming in a very close second was Lingcodlonny with a 22lb Lingzilla.
I honestly don't remember who's fish was third, but it was in the high teens (someone can help me here).

The stringers that were brought in were ridiculuously huge.  There were many many lings in the mid-teens and lots of big reds and coppers as well (we're talking 6 to 8 pound range) plus a few cabazone.  

One note about Brian (bsteves).  I've only met him a couple times, but he is a pretty reserved and softspoken guy.  I saw him catch that 23# fish and when he got it gaffed and on board, he definitely came out of his shell when he started bashing it with his club yelling "Die... Die.... Die!!!!"  :anger .  That was pretty funny...  :smt043

As for the raffle... due to everyone's generosity buying tickets, we managed to raise $650.00 for the Coastside fishing club.   Way beyond my expectations!  Thanks a ton for everyone who donated prizes and purchased tickets!

The custom fishing rod was won by Brian Gardner's girlfriend Cathy... anyone care to place a bet as to which one of them will actually use it first? :smt002    

Finally, eventhough the hill down to the beach is long and steep, it is definitly worth the effort to fish this incredible spot.  The scenery is absolutely stunning and there is more structure out in those waters than about any place I've fished.  The small town of Elk is a perfect location... a store and a resturant and a couple shops for those in need of those things, but other than that, we were able to conduct our business without any hassles at all.  

There you go... I'll leave the rest for others to post.

2006 Elk Tourney Champion
2006 Angler of the Year 3rd Place

Kunz's Reel Rods

Acts 10:13 And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.


  • Sea Lion
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  • Location: Sunol
  • Date Registered: Dec 2004
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Glad everyone had fun up there.  I saw a bunch of fat grassies, perch, sargo and one nice copper down at the breakwater, as well as a bunch of those gargantuan anenomies that someone snagged on a tire some time ago.  They looked something like this just keep in mind they're up to 2' tall.
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee
Superior, they said, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early.


  • Guest
Sounds like an excellent time. Congrats Brian!
Promethe - What did you shoot your pic with? Were you at the Monterey breakwater?


  • Sea Lion
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I didn't take the photo, and yes it was at the breakwater.  I had fun on the deep rocks while my wife was doing skills stuff in the sand.
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they call Gitche Gumee
Superior, they said, never gives up her dead
When the gales of November come early.


  • Sea Lion
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Other than getting the flu half way through the main event I couldn't be happier with the way things turned out.  Great people, great facility, RIDICULOUS fishing, the ocean co-operated, amazing scenery, and the prizes were oustanding.  It was also nice to see so many families and kids, kids always add there own energy to the mix.

We accomplished our fund-raising goals easily, raising over $1100 for the Community Center and $650 for Coastside.  Mission accomplished.

Special thanks to Cobra Kayaks for providing a great first prize, and to everyone that donated to the raffle.   There were some beautiful handmade items from Chef and Lonny that got a lot of attention, and both went home with chris (cpyak).  The raffle rod was insane, and was on everyones must-win list.  FYI-I bought the sister rod and it was amazing to fish with...Erik knows what he's doing and his rods are worth the money.

We had 41 registered entries, with 40 yaks actually showing up to fish.  This doubles the size of any other Nor Cal tourney that I am aware of.  The camp looked like yak-stock...tents and kayaks everywhere.

The Friday early birds snuck out for a short pre-fish and it was obvious the bite was on.  Tony showed with some nice fish earl in the evening...

Travis not looking like such a newbie these days.  Huge reds!...

With the fog and seas lining up our 0600 launch was a go.  By the time I finally got to go fishing there were carts all over the beach...

There were small fleets everywhere.  I paddled over to Bill P. who was kind enough to "babysit" jellyfish until I could get on the water. When I got there Bill, Mooch, and Polepole (Allen S) were int o good bite on pinnacle.  Bill P. bent...

Jellyfish apparently was in good hands because he was already working on a good stringer.  He couldn't even lift it out of the water!  New yak and a good fishing...

I came across Seebreeze and her husband Randy who seemed to be having a great time and enjoying the spectacular setting...

Next I ran into GTO and his wife Patricia.  Eric was getting towed into a wash rock by a big ling and his wife was trying to help him get out of harms way.  These two were great company, and I was delighted to hear that Patricia is a Dr., always good to have a doc around.  

Then I ran in to Brian (bsteve) and I instantly knew he had a contender.  He held up his ling and it was a whopper.  Between him and the ling his Caper looked tiny!  Brian and the rest of the Bodega Marine Lab crew were very helpful with fish ID all weekend, also very nice folks to hang out with.

Then I ran into Lonny on the beach and realized that Brian had a REAL challenger.  At the weigh-in the fish looked nearly identical in size...and both bottomed my smaller scale!!!  It was so close we re-weighed each fish 3 times on two different scales and each time Brians fish edged out Lonnys by about 1 pound...EXCITING

Both 1st (23#) and second (22#) were awesome catches.  Congrats to both!

Travis was in 3rd up until the last minutes when our good friend Brent Wood ran up the hill with a huge stringer to slide into 3rd place.

You needed extra karma to finish in the top three.  1st place was a marine biologist, second went to Lonny who's native american crafts and blessings added so much to the event, and third went to a pastor who just had his fourth kid!  Regular people need not apply!!!!  I thought that Seans biodeisel Jetta would have allowed him to do better, but it was not the case.

Lots of the usual suspects were there too.  Everyone seemed to have a great time and catch plenty of fish.

A look at the board shows a lot of yaks and a high quality day of fishing!

Sorry I bonked with the flu and missed the party, I'll make sure to make the party at Mendo!  Thanks again to all of those who contributed and attended.


  • Sea Lion
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Amazing day on the water, thanks for everyone involved!! Great turnout, great food.  Thanks to everyone that cooked dinner Saturday it was amazing. I had a great time meeting everyone and putting real names and real faces to online ones.  I am always amazed at the people that are attracted to this sport. You would think by now we would have a few jerks in the group but everyone is so cool and friendly.

Congrats to the top 3 finishers, amazing fish! I had a blast hanging out with jellyfish and watching him outfish me. I caught more lings than I have ever caught but no big ones. Joel caught some nice fish as well. At one point we had about 10 yaks in a 20 yard area, it was incredible!

Special thanks go out to Kevin who let me crash in his pop-up trailer Friday night.

I can't wait until next year!


  • Guest
Thanks Sean, Leah, Bill, Erik, and everyone who worked hard to set this up.  This was a killer weekend.  I had the time of my life.  You made me one happy dude!  I'm so glad I finally got to meet all you guys.  It was also good checking out everyone's kayak setups and watching the fish cleaning.  I learned a ton of stuff.  Sean-thanks a lot for the fish cleaning lesson and letting me use your knife.  Thanks for the food Alex and Lonny.   :smt041

I don't know how I'm gunna go back to work.  All I can think about now is yak fishing.  Congrats to Brian, LingcodLonny and Brent.


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Ditto the comments from Bill, Erik, and Travis.:smt045
Congrats... Brian, Lonny, and Brent.  You guys deserved it!!!
Sean.... I hope you're feeling better.  Excellent report and photos.  

I also had the best time ever.  Kudo's again to Sean, his family, the Elk community, and everyone who helped make this NorCal's best kayak fishing event to date.  :smt023...It was even worth that long portage up the hill.:smt002

Unlike past NorCal kayak fishing derbies, this event gave everyone here the opportunity to really get to know each other and spend some quality time.
All I can say is.... "sign me up for next year!" ... and to those who weren't able to make it this past weekend.... "plan now for the next one".

Winner - 2018 ARW Halibut Handline Derby
Winner - 2013 Doran Beach Crabfest
2nd Place - 2012 Alameda Rockwall Halibut Derby
Winner (Biggest Rock Crab) - 2010 Half Moon Bay Crabfest
Winner - 2009 Alameda Rockwall Halibut Derby
Winner - 2009 Paradise Halibut Hunt
Winner - 2007 NCKA Angler of the Year
Winner "Grand Slam" - 2007 Bendo @ Mendo III
2nd Place - 2007 Monterey Bay Kayak Fishing Derby
Winner - 2004 Santa Cruz Kayak Fishing Derby


  • Guest
We,Carman and I had a great time up North with all the Yak fisherman and there families. Thanks to Bill and Sean for putting on a very successful fishing event for all to enjoy.When I seen Brian's fish out on the water, my heart stopped beating for a moment.I knew it was going to be close and wished him the best of luck .At the weigh-in Brian's fish beat me out and I was very happy for Him.Enjoy your new Kayak Brian.I met a great group of fishermen and there families,Skyboy's Son was great to hang out with, future water Puppy in the works.Thanks to all the Ladies ,wifes and girlfriends who helped with all cooking and cleaning.I'm looking forward to seeing everyone in the near future.Thanks to the community of ELK for letting us use the wonder community center.See you guys on the water.      P.S. MOSS LANDING MARINE CENTER is doing a servey on ground fish at the DUXBURY REEF off the MARIN COAST.The object of there survey is to track the migration of the rock fish and lingcod,so it's Catch and Release ONLY.In September the marine biologists will need volenteers to fish.This will be Party Boat fishing and it's all free.This will be Next month and I'll post the dates that we will be fishing.I helped out two months ago and on the first day I caught over 22 lingcod that were taged and released.If anyone would like to join me and some other fisherman to give back from were we take ,just replay.see you guys soon.Travis thanks for helping me up the hill with my yak and Mooch get a girlfriend. :smt006


  • Sea Lion
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So glad you guys enjoyed the event.  I was so disappointed to miss the party.   :smt009  I'll make up for it at Mendo.

I tried to make it home Sat. afternoon but once on the road I realized I couldnt drive at all, so instead of crashing the car, I crashed at my moms on Greenwood road.  I slept/puked for the rest of sat.  My fever broke yestereday afternoon and I am feeling much better now but that was one intense cootie.

Lonny-you are spouseare some of the coolest people I have met in a while, your personality is so kind and calming-you are always welcome!

Hat Trick

  • Sea Lion
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the people and the fishing were fantastic. i will do that portage anytime for that kind of fun. thanks to the white family, the kunz family and bill that was a great event. also i met some very interesting free spirits who live in elk, vince the surfer and the furniture maker who rows [not paddles] his skiff around.


  • Salmon
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  • Location: monterey
  • Date Registered: Dec 2004
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that was the funnest fishing event we have ever been to!!! :smt003
can we do it again next week?me and christina will be back for sure.the people and food were great :smt003

btw .i dont think weve ever drank that much vodka in our lives on a sat night.it was a very fun night .sun drive home was kinda rough though :beer2

se ya


  • Guest
Thanks very much and I hope your doing alot better now.Everybody seem to be very relaxed around our fellow members and friends who attended.Carmen and I will enjoy many more times with everyone, days on the water,cooking great food and laughing with all who attend.Be safe and if anyone wants to launch in Linda Mar or Half Moon Bay this week just post on website and we can team up one place or another.


  • Sea Lion
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  • Date Registered: Jun 2005
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It's been said, but it can't be said enough, what a terrific group of folks to spend the weekend with.  Sean, Eric (and Bill of course), thank you for drawing us up there.  Sean's efforts showed in so many ways making the camping work seamlessly.  Friday evening was warm and sunny even!
The fishing was of exceptional quality.  I released better quality fish than I have caught at other locations.  I had my personal best Vermillion on my third drop.  Randy had his personal best ling.  And we both had the best time fishing in the flotilla.  We got to see and then catch our first greenlings.  Mooch even got to see the sexual dimorphism of the species.... :smt017
And the comraderie.  Spending time with people we know and making new friends was exceptional.  Learning new skills.  I still feel like such a fishing newbie when I am around so much talent.  Skyboy's abalone cleaning demo was an eye-opener.  And the tournament winners were totally worthy.  As Bill mentioned, no jerks!  Through the 5 hours of cleanup at home I was still smiling at the weekend memories.  Thank you all for the exceptional opportunity.
Pat....Heh, Cathy, give a holler if you want a day away from the heat to get your new rod wet.
Saltwater is the cure for everything that ails us,
sweat, tear or the sea.


  • Administrator
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Hey all,

Sorry I couldn't stick around for the afternoon festivities.  I had a great time out there.  Headed out with the crew that hit Nose Rock early.  I watched bsteves banging on his big one.  "Die die die!!!"  The fishing was hot until about 9-9:30 when the tide slowed.  I moved over to the north to have fun with the nearshore rockies as I had my ling limit aleady.  Ran into Lingcodlonny banging on his big one.  "Die die die!!!".  Stopped off by mendoed and pulled some blues from the wash rock, then headed further north and joined the BIG flotilla.  "SON! there's another one!!!".  We watched that jellyfish punk put a schooling on the fish.  Well done!

I did put together quite the dinner for the girlfriend's family on Saturday night and again on Sunday night.  My GAF actually went way up after this weekend.  Anyone want to hit Fort Ross this week?  I'm up here until Thursday night.

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