The St. Helena “A” Team… went out halibut hunting on San Francisco Bay last Saturday. Look at this pro lineup: Liesl Wolf Heinemann, Brent Randol, his son-in-law, J.R. Coleman, Lars Kronmark, Soren Bloch and Eric Titus. Fish in the 14- to 16-pound range kept their interest up. Live anchovies were the go-to bait for all hands.
Lars said he saw more fishing boats in the bay than on any other day he has fished there. Have a look at the fish in his sauté pan a few hours later. He should be a permanent invitee on every trip. I’ll promise to bring the Titus wines.
Variable weather is still the unknown factor right now in the salt nearby. Look for more stable weather days ahead, and more good days to fish. You’ve got halibut, stripers and rocks on tap, with king salmon soon to join the team.
Here’s A Sampling… noted in Dave Hurley’s Weekend Best Bets Hot sheet: At Bodega Bay, rockfish with a possibility of a few Dungeness crab. Call Captain Rick Powers at Bodega Bay Sport Fishing to book trips.
*Said Keith Fraser at San Rafael’s Loch Lomond Bait and Tackle, “The bay has cleared out, and the halibut fishing has improved with the smaller tide.” He has good supplies of live anchovies, smelt and shiners, and some midshipmen for shark hunters as well as ghost shrimp and pile worms.
*Delta on largemouth bass as slowed down with the higher water temperatures, but they get acclimated to that quite quickly and the big ones will be ready to hunt soon. Randy Pringle, the Fishing Instructor, told the Hot sheet he is working a slow retrieve.
“It is important to cast it across current, as the bass are hanging out in front of the weeds,” he said. My eyes perked up when I saw his note that “typically frogs are good at this time of year as one big bite is possible.”
Put a frog trip on your calendar when the Clear Lake water temperature hits 80 degrees. Stock up on frog patterns, red wing and yellow wing blackbird colors and white, chug them up against the tules or over grass mats at sun-up, and hold on tight. It is a thrill to even just hook one that jumps all the way out of the water to kill that frog. Don’t pull too soon, or you’ll pull it right out of the bass’s mouth. My English friend, Derrick, says, “God Save The Queen” before setting the hook.
Berryessa action… on kokanee has been challenging. With the heat pushing them a little deeper (like 50 to 65 feet), anglers were using lots of gear. Coming into play were RMT dodgers, RMT spinners, RMT planktons, Apex AALures tipped with Pautzke fire corn, and fire gel on the hardware.
Get To Clear Lake Early… because the bite slows down after 10 a.m. The Hot Sheet noted that while the post-spawn bass are holding in deep water, there was a top water bite with Spooks, Whopper Ploppers or buzz baits and crank baits. We’ll be fishing June 16-17 with pro guide Bob Myskey. I’ll try to get the latest information down to you quickly.
Finding an operable launch ramp will become increasingly difficult as the lake depth continues to shrink.
HighSchoolFishing.org… will tell you all about its 12th Annual High School Fishing World Finals and National Championship on Lake Hartwell in Anderson, S.C. June 30 through July 3. To my knowledge, we don’t have any high school bass fishing clubs in Napa County yet. However, St. Helena High School has a fishing club that is thriving after about five years of action.
With the upcoming new County involvement in the management of the recreational use of Lake Berryessa, I’m hoping to see an increased student interest in high school bass club competition. Then seeing a Napa County High School bass club team fighting for first place in the Nationals.
Look close by for a model. Lake County has five high school bass clubs: Clearlake, Kelseyville, Lower lake, Middletown and Upper Lake.
And Give Me The Drum Roll Please… Father’s Day will be in just nine short days, on June 20. Go buy your Pop a nice gift for his outdoor pleasure. Shopping for it at home makes it even sweeter — and I don't mean on the home computer.
Up here in St. Helena, it’s fun to ask their knowledgeable staff at Steves Hardware for some neat ideas. Same goes for Sweeney’s Sports on Imola in Napa. Tell ’em Ryan sent you.