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Topics - ThreemoneyJ

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 9
1
TLDR: Fished the Fraser River for sturgeon. Specifically big ones, not numbers. The weather was terrible. Our guide worked his ass off. We had a bunch of chances at fish, lost 3 fish, landed 2 at 76Ē and 1 at 98Ē. Absolute trip of a lifetime and would do it again in a heartbeat.

Long version
Sturgeon have long been a fascination of mine. They are such a neat fish. Giant dinosaurs that feed on the bottom but randomly jump out of the water for no reason. Then when hooked they tend to jump like crazy also. They like to live in muddy water and eat a ton of food, but are so sensitive that if they feel something wrong they just drop your bait. Add to that the relatively small population that we have in the SF Bay Area and you have the makings of a fish that will drive you crazy. Ive caught a handful in my life, but never any that were truly large specimens.

Most people who enjoy fishing have seen the pictures on the internet of sturgeon that were so large that a huge group of people are in the photo holding it. Looking into that more those usually come from either the Fraser River in Canada or the Columbia River.

Well about a year ago the plan started to come together and Sam and I decided that we were going to spend time in Canada on the Fraser River with the hope of catching some giants. We researched guides and found Yves Bisson https://www.fraserriversturgeon.com who looked to be a good fit for what we wanted to do, which was swing for the fences and try for a big fish willing to wait all day for a bite.

We booked our trip months in advance. Early June weather is usually decent enough and itís not yet the busy season. In the weeks leading up to the trip the weather forecast was getting worse and worse. Just days before the trip to Canada (4 day trip) the forecast was temps in the 50ís with multiple inches of rain. The money was already spent and we werenít going to back out so we packed our rain gear and hoped for the best!

Out of our 4 day trip we had 1 day planned of fishing. We had chartered the boat for just Sam and I which would allow for maximum hook up chances. Of course our fishing day was planned for the coldest/rainiest/windiest day of our trip! Well we packed our rain gear and met Yves at the boat launch at 8am as instructed. I thought it was an odd late start, but apparently thatís what all the guides do.

The boat launch was nothing more than a sandy beach at a regional park in Chiliwack, which was about 1.5 hrs east of downtown Vancouver. When we arrived there were a half dozen guide boats and multiple groups of people getting ready to fish. Yves was already there and ready even though we had gotten to the launch early. We made our way down and introduced ourselves. After a quick safety brief and check of our licenses we were quickly off. First boat on the water! The boat was an aluminum inboard jet. Big V8. Full enclosure with a diesel heater. Yves had coffee water snd snacks on the boat for us. Lunch is optional but we packed our own.

We started the day blasting upriver and talking about the river. Itís a huge river and totally undammed. Fast flowing muddy water with lots of obstructions. Not a river for an amateur.

After a brief run we slowed and idled around the first spot, looking for fish on the sidescan/downscan. Iíve used sidescan a lot so I was watching the screen too. I nearly had a heart attack! Iíve never seen so many big fish on a screen at once! Dozens of them! Yves remarked that it was an unusually large amount of fish and was hopeful. He maneuvered the boat above them and anchored up. 3 rods went into the water. The regulations are similar to here. 1 rod per person, barbless hooks. Yves was happy to fish 3 rods. 4 can lead to tangles. Bait in the water and Yves put a timer on. ďIf we donít get a bite in 15 minutes we moveĒ.

I asked him about tactics. Heís been a guide for 28 years on the river. If he canít draw a biter up within the first 15 minutes of getting the baits in the water then itís not likely to happen. He would sit on a big pile of fish in his younger days and just waste time hoping one would come up. Now he hunts biting fish. Bait wise a lot of people use roe. Roe tends to get bites from smaller fish which is fine if you are going for numbers. For big fish a giant slab of salmon is the bait of choice.

We baited 2 rods with salmon and 1 with roe. The roe rod started getting pecked at almost right away by either small sturgeon or squawfish. Nothing big enough to early it. 15 minutes went by without a real bite. We reeled up and slid over to the other side of the hole to repeat the process. Another 15 minutes with the same results. Time to move!

Our first fish came on roe about 2 hours after we started our trip. A little baby that was maybe 18 inches. It had managed to somehow hook itself. It actually was a neat experience catching that one. We got to tag it with an electronic tag and see the whole process of how the tagging program works. Really neat to learn about!

The weather was bad and the fish were not cooperating. We made a lot of moves and lots of fresh bait. Around 11 we had our first real bite. Sam got a good hook set on it and had good weight. The fish charged the boat and the barbless hook came loose, ugh!

We made another move (always upstream) and now the weather really got bad. The wind changed direction and got downright nasty. Yves was concerned about being able to anchor properly in the wind and current as we found another spot that had a pile of fish in it. The boat was swinging pretty badly on anchor.

It was now around 1230. More than half the day gone with 1 little baby fish and 1 lost to show. We were staying positive but it was a grind and worry was starting to set in. Yves started getting baits in the water. 2 chunks of salmon and 1 roe. Within a minute of getting to the bottom one of the rods with salmon got slammed. An absolute suicide bite! Sam got on it and the fish was strong. Pouring rain and ripping wind, fighting a giant! So cool. 15 minutes of back and forth and the fish was slid into the cradle!! Success, we accomplished what we came for! The fish was 76 inches long.

After beaching the boat for pictures and measurements plus scanning the tag (it had been caught before) and logging the data we reset into the same hole again. Baits into the water and the first bait gets a suicide bite before the 3rd bait is even in the water! Itís my turn and this fish fights totally different than the last. The first one stayed down and swam away during the fight. This one jumped multiple times and even greyhounded right nest to the boat like a sailfish!! We repeated the process of landing and tagging and photographing. This one was also 76 inches but had never been caught and tagged before.

We set up a third time in the same hole and again after a brief wait we had a takedown! After a brief run that fish came off. We reset the baits a fourth time but no more fish came up. Time for another move upriver.

We find another spot that has good fish marks in it. Itís now after 3pm and we are way upriver from the launch. Our trip goes to 4, but Yves wants to put us on a big fish and isnít worried about the time too much. We put out salmon on all 3 rods since thatís what they have been biting. After a brief wait one of the rods goes off. Sam is up and gets on the fish. Itís a better quality than the first two. The fish runs down and away from the boat to Yves leaves the other 2 rods in the water. ďThis one is playing nice, letís try for a doubleĒ. As soon as he says that another rod goes off. Double!! I grab that rod and fight the fish for a few minutes, but unfortunately the hook pulled out and it got away.

Sam continued her fight and was rewarded with a true giant, 98 inches!! Lots of pictures and celebrations later and itís time to call it a day. We blast back downriver to the launch and are the last boat to leave. Everyone else who was there in the morning has already left. Yves really put in the time, effort, and miles to make our trip memorable!

2
Hookups and Fishing Reports (Viewable by Public) / Lake Sonoma 4/27
« on: April 29, 2024, 01:29:16 PM »
Wow the lake is full!

I took the stealth for an afternoon paddle at yorty creek. I even brought a fishing pole with me. The wind was ripping pretty well, which made fishing a little difficult. Steady 15mph with gusts to 30. I still averaged 4mph into the wind though!

The water was very high, most of the day use area was flooded. Water was pretty clear with temps in the low 60ís.

I was throwing small swimbaits at flooded trees and bushes. There were fish in all of them. Nothing big but a mix of lmb, smb, and crappie.

Now is really the time to be hitting those local lakes. They are full of water and the fish are biting!

3
AOTY / The return of the big measure board.
« on: April 27, 2024, 11:47:34 AM »
I started with a regular 30 inch board for my AOTY fish way back when.

I caught a few that exceeded the board so I moved on to a tri fold 36 incher. It was ok, but a little flimsy and a few decent fish flopping on it broke it.

At one point I made my own 50Ē board by cutting two 30 inch boards. That thing was pretty neat and I was fortunate enough to put 3 different 40+ inch fish on it (lingcod, halibut, and sturgeon). But hard use over the years took its toll and the plastic finally broke.

Then I started using a 32Ē board, which is nice most of the time, but there are quite a few fish swimming out there that are longer than 32Ē.

That leads me to my latest board. Itís a Ketch folding 48Ē metal board. Hopefully sometime soon it will be put to good use. Maybe a clear lake catfish hookup is in order or something hmmmÖ.

4
Hookups and Fishing Reports (Viewable by Public) / Clear Lake 4/25
« on: April 25, 2024, 04:27:19 PM »
A few weeks ago I was out on Clear Lake looking for crappie. All we found was crappy weather, and the fish werenít really biting.

Today I decided to try to make up the bad weather trip. Well guess what? I got rained on  :smt010 It was a little cold, a little windy, and a little rainy. You donít always get to pick the best days to fish, and the fish are already wet so they donít mind the rain.

I started off throwing a 2 inch keitech 1/16 head on a light powered rod 10lb braid to 6lb flouro. I didnít put that combo down all morning.

I got into the crappie pretty quickly and had a nice 14.75 AOTY upgrade pretty quickly. I sorted through a lot of other crappie, finally landing a great 15 incher!

I also landed a few bass, but nothing to get too excited about.

I even got a big ol catfish throwing the crappie lure around. 31.25 inch which was a really nice AOTY upgrade!

The fish are there. Sort of all over the place relating to structure. They were biting from about a foot of water all the way out to 15 feet of water. No real pattern to it.

5
AOTY / AOTY Catfish
« on: April 24, 2024, 06:43:55 AM »
In case anyone hasnít been paying attention there have been some huge catfish hitting the AOTY boards!

Corey entered a very nice 30Ē

JoeDubC then entered a 34.25Ē which is the 5th largest ever entered into AOTY!

Then tommcdo threw down with a 35.75Ē. The biggest ever entered into AOTY. Wow!

Great fish you guys! The catfish certainly seem to be on the chew right now and spring fishing is really going strong.

AOTY is still wide open, check the links in my signature for more info or click the AOTY link at the top of the page.

6
AOTY / Almost didnít get an AOTY fish in March.
« on: March 31, 2024, 07:43:32 PM »
Phew, down to the wire on Easter!! But a random catfish while bass fishing saved the day.

Throwing a 3 inch purple/black swimbait on a brush covered 10 ft flat on the local lake.

Buzzer beater!!!

Also caught some largemouth, smallmouth, and a crappie! 4 species in 1 day. Plus a bonus carp.

Keep grinding AOTY all, spring is here and the bite is heating up!!

7
AOTY / AOTY Feb 2024 wrap up.
« on: March 02, 2024, 03:13:24 PM »
AOTY February 2024 wrap up.

2 months down! We have been having a decent amount of rain and winter weather which has made fishing challenging. Despite that a few brave souls have gotten out and entered some fish!

We have 11 anglers who have entered a combined 9 different species of fish. Some of those are some pretty darn big too!

Great job to those who got out and entered some fish! Hopefully those of you who have yet to sign up will do so! It is still wide open right now with plenty of time to get involved!

If you are interested in taking part in Angler Of The Year click the links below or send me a message and I will activate your account.

It is a great way to get more involved with kayak fishing and learn to catch new species as well as make new friends and fishing partners.

8
AOTY / Electric motors are now allowed for AOTY.
« on: March 02, 2024, 02:47:19 PM »
The votes to include electric motors passed the votes to not include them by 1 whole vote!  :smt044

I knew it would be a little divisive, but I was surprised that there was only a 1 vote difference.

If you have an electric and want to play in AOTY you are welcome to.

9
AOTY / AOTY 2024 Prize
« on: February 07, 2024, 08:50:20 AM »
As graciously modeled by 2023 winner Poopsmith here https://www.norcalkayakanglers.com/index.php?topic=101563.15 there is a championship belt for the 2024 winner. It is currently sitting in a garage cabinet patiently waiting to see who gets to take it home.

Its way more challenging to take a picture of a reflective object than you would think BTW.

10
Hookups and Fishing Reports (Viewable by Public) / Clear Lake 1/27 RPT
« on: January 27, 2024, 08:35:42 PM »
Sam and I hit clear Lake for a little winter fishing on Saturday 1/27. The weather was really nice. Partly cloudy, light wind, and a tiny sprinkle of rain.

We fished around rattlesnake. Water temp was 51 with a green tinge and maybe 2 feet of visibility.

The fishing was pretty decent especially with the amount of pressure in the area we fished. We caught a couple of bass and a couple of crappie. The crappie were roaming open water and the bass were tight on rocky structure.

Biggest bass that I got was 20.5 inches/7.5lbs. Sams biggest was 17.5 inches. Biggest crappie was 14 inches.

Lots of water in the lake. Itís only going to get better as the days start getting longer!

11
AOTY / 2024 AOTY is open
« on: January 23, 2024, 07:41:24 PM »
Thanks to the hard work of bsteves the 2024 AOTY website is up and open for business!

If you are getting an error when attempting to load the AOTY site is might be due to a conflict between the http and https address. The http address works, but for some reason the https address is having issues. If you are using safari or edge you can simply delete the s from https and it should work. If you are using chrome you have to go into your browser settings and deselect "always use secure connections" as well as "use secure DNS" If you are using other browsers then IDK, I'm not a computer person, I just enjoy fishing.

If you competed last year I have activated your account.

If you have never competed before reply here or send me a message and we will get you set up. It is a fun way to track your fishing progress and see how your luck (and skill) stack up against other kayak anglers.

Have fun in 2024 everyone.

12
AOTY / Electric Motors in AOTY
« on: January 22, 2024, 04:04:31 PM »
For 2024 as a test run should we try electric power in AOTY?

Entries have been down since we went away from a paid platform to a free platform, and I would like to get more people involved. Iím hoping that opening it up to electric power might expand upon the amount of people who would/could compete.

I know that there are some people who hate the idea of power in AOTY, and some who want to do AOTY but canít because of having a powered kayak.

A lot of  major kayak tourneys and series have gone electric power. Hell even Hobie has announced that they are allowing power in the Hobie bass open series. They have been anti power forever. Times sure seem to be changing.

My vote is to let powered kayaks play. I hope it gets more people involved.

The powered kayak isnít going to get you out of bed at in the middle of the night to drive crazy miles and hours to chase fish. It isnít going to find the fish for you. It isnít going to make the fish bite. Chasing down 10 quality fish is a huge commitment and anyone who does so deserves recognition, powered kayak or not.

Please if you are interested in AOTY let me know what you think.

13
AOTY / 2023 AOTY Results!!
« on: January 17, 2024, 06:42:04 PM »
WINNER

A big congratulations to Poopsmith for winning AOTY in 2023. He had 10 fish entered for a total of 1655.25 points!! Way to go  :smt007

TOP 10

1 Poopsmith - 1655.25 - anchor fish 37" 185 pt lingcod
2 tommcdo - 1549.625 - anchor fish 15.75" 189 pt crappie
3 JoeDubC - 1476.125 - anchor fish 23.25" 186 pt rockfish
4 Pasha - 1227.375 - anchor fish 25.75" 191.8125 pt rainbow trout
5 Jewli0n - 1151.75 - anchor fish 15" 180 pt crappie
6 Corey - 1139.125 - anchor fish 15.75" 189 pt crappie
7 ThreemoneyJ - 1112.0 -anchor fish 15" 180 pt crappie
8 The Kraken - 962.25 - anchor fish 23.5" 182.125 rainbow trout
9 deepseadrew - 957.125 - anchor fish 23.25" rockfish
10 calhafi - 955.5 - anchor fish 31" california halibut

TOP SPECIES

Rockfish
deepseadrew 23.25in and JoeDubC 23.25in

Cabezon
Tpowell707 20.75in

California Halibut
Loebs 39in

Lingcod
Abking 37.5in

Trout
Pasha 25.75in

Smallmouth/Spotted bass
Ghost 18.5in

Largemouth Bass
The Kraken 19.5in

Striped Bass
tommcdo 31in

Greenling
Jewli0n 15.75in

Surf Perch
Poopsmith 11.75in

Flatfish
Poopsmith 20in

Panfish
Corey 15.75in and tommcdo 15.75in

Catfish
The Kraken 32.75in

Kokanee
AlsHobieOutback 15.75in and Poopsmith 15.75in

Mackinaw
JoeDubC 23in

Pacific Halibut
MarkL 43.75in

Brown Trout
Seachumm 23.5 in


Great effort by everyone who entered fish!

14
AOTY / Ideas for AOTY
« on: January 12, 2024, 02:46:47 PM »
EDIT

The train got off the tracks a little bit and that was my fault. I changed the title so that people who want information for 2024 AOTY won't go down the panfish debate rabbit hole  :smt003

All,

There will be an AOTY 2024. Please hold off on entering 2024 fish until the 2023 fish are archived.

Per the rules there is a 2 week grace period for fish entries so theoretically there may still be 2023 fish to be entered.

Updates and information will be posted soon. Thanks for your patience.

15
Sam and I are going to look for herring in the kayaks tomorrow morning. Wind and tide look pretty good.

Camo outback and yellow outback probably throwing tacos and spitballs. If itís a pancake itís probably not us  :smt044

Also bringing sabikis. Iíll bring some extra gear if anyone wants to try it out.

Dunphy park around 730 am. Going to wander around looking for birds and such. Probably make our way toward spinnaker or maybe over toward Belvedere. Radio 69.

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