The Bay Area
The weekend started off with a bang– or should I say Barred! The entire LCO team (besides Art and George(someone had to work…)) went fishing; Steve, Sarah, Ben, and I headed towards the Golden Gate Bridge.
On the way, we were grooving to some live bluesy tunes from Chicago’s oldest and finest blues bar, Kingston Mines–live blues 7 days a week until 4 am if you’re ever in the area. We only had one issue, the only issue that matters…absolutely zero signs of fish. The team stormed the beaches and fished hard but still no signs of life. So we took a step back (had a beer or two) and watched the water for 30 minutes. Foam lines began to start moving, nervous water became visible and soon enough Herrey started breaching the surface. “CAST!” I cried. Ben, ready as always, cast in the middle of the busting bait, right away, fish on. It ends up being a Barred Surfperch– an LCO favorite of the surfperch species. This was a perfect example of how acting like a scientist can go a long way in saltwater fly fishing, so remember: maybe take a step back and watch your water.
As the Saturday morning sun began to rise, George Revel, LCO’s founder and team leader was joneses to fish. The entire week I could see him planning his weekend fishing, constantly checking tides and google earth for striper hints.
By 0900 I received pictures of fish, screaming out of excitement, I got in my Subaru and went over the golden gate and headed towards Marin. Finally was able to meet up with G but it seemed that I missed the show, high tide was about an hour and the fish were to spread out to find. Me Sitting there in defeat and George with a huge smile on his face was a tough cookie to swallow. All I knew is that my Easter Sunday had to have better results.
John Mullenholz fish from saturday morning!
My phone was dead, but LCO teammate Ben Engle knows the drill. Meet at the casting ponds at 0630, without any communication we found each looking at American bison and ready to fish. Jumped in one car and headed to Marin, low tide was at 0730, perfect timing to find feeding fish. Right off the bat we witnessed bait and boils all around us! I was beyond excited mainly because I haven’t seen this kind of striper action since my Nantucket days.
Two fish one rig!
“Fish everywhere” Ben and I start casting, Boom ben picks up two fish on the same rig! a first for sure.
The next 30 minutes was wild, getting into feeding zones is everything. We became laser-focused on any type of water movement, laughing after every fish and how much fun we were having. So great to see that THIS is a healthy fishery, and ended our Easter morning with a double hook up.
As we were moving spots, Ben and I ran into John Flynn who had broken his fly rod. Luckily, the LCO team had an extra Redington Crux/ Hatch Reel to give him to use for the rest of the day (Easter Bunny!)
Since my family is 2,271 miles away from SF, I only knew one way to end my Easter Sunday, fly fishing for surf perch at Ocean Beach. Skateboarding with a fly rod in hand was certainly a highlight of my weekend and probably a sight to see for many walking the beach. Using my Rio Shooting head sink 6 I didn’t get one bite. Disappointed with the lack of fish, but nothing like casting at the edge of the world.
Becoming obsessed with this surfperch culture that many have formed over the years in the Bay Area shoutout Tyler Graff and Aaron Van Schyndel for showing me the way. After further discussion with George ill start using an RIO T-11 instead of the sink 6 starting to realize that OB is another beast and have to approach it entirely different manner. I’ll let you know how it goes.
Remember; fish hard and above all else “just make it fun”. San Francisco deserves this fishery and it’s only getting better and better.
Feel free to contact me at anytime 216-978-4698 or firstname.lastname@example.org