June 2014

by greenwater on June 29, 2014

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The consistency of the Eureka salmon fishery has become legendary over the last several years  and this week the bite was full tilt.  A weak front passed over the North Coast bringing light rain and calming the prevailing northwesterly breeze making for a flat ocean.  Hundreds of small boats took advantage of the great weather and most were rewarded for their effort.

The Eureka charter boat fleet made short work of the salmon with limits before 10 am being the norm.  On the best bites, limits flew over the rail in just over a half hour.  Shellback was back to the dock before 9:30 on several days.   The biggest limiting factor was the hoards of shakers that made an appearance towards the end of the week.  While the big ones were still there and ready to play, weeding through a half dozen undersized for every keeper slowed the pace but made for tons of bites, hectic action and lots of bent rods.  It was rare for a trolled bait to last more that two or three minutes without being devoured.

The good weather provided a shot a the world class Cape Mendocino bottom fish action and it was phenomenal.  Big rockfish were easy pickings and The Shellback weighed in some giant lingcod with 5 fish over 20 pounds anchored by a monster 36 pound beast.  Halibut action slipped a notch this week but expect them to get back on track soon.  July is when the flatfish normally kick into high gear.

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by greenwater on June 22, 2014

It’s been a week of nice weather and great fishing out of Eureka with limit style action on fat salmon.  Charter boats were on the water posting big scores every day.  Basically, just more of the usual for this North Coast port that’s been dubbed the worlds greatest saltwater king fishery.

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The fish pushed in closer to the beach for most of the week gorging on the mind boggling quantities of bait in the area.  140 to 170 feet of water was the magic zone and several mornings clouds of krill were pushed to the surface with big salmon rolling in every direction.  Bites were coming as shallow as 15 feet on the downriggers early and then sinking out as far as 80 in the afternoon.  Most boats were doing their damage on trolled anchovies or purple haze hoochies drug behind flashers.  The grade of fish bumped up a notch with a good number in the 20 pound class.  The biggest of this young season was weighed in this week and broke the 35 pound mark.  It was caught by Jimmy Glenn who was fishing with Green Water Fishing Adventures on board the Shellback and was the last fish of the day capping an awesome set of limits.

The pacific halibut bite slowed a bit this week with brown “salmon water” pushed all the way out to the flatfish grounds in 300 feet.  For some reason that always seems to put a damper them but despite the marginal conditions there were still some dandies caught by the fleet.  We took advantage of the good weather and charged the 17 miles to the lost coast and found the bottomfish willing and ready as they always seem to be in this area.  Limits in minutes was the word from everyone that made the run.

Looking ahead, the marine forecast is calling for favorable conditions through the next week.  As we come off the full moon, tidal exchanges will diminish making the harbor entrance more manageable for small boat.  As good as action has been for the last few weeks, we’re just now coming into what is normally peak time.

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by greenwater on June 15, 2014

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The gale force spring winds that held fishing in check last week have finally subsided.  The Eureka fleet hit the water again Wednesday anxious for its first peek at what was sure to be a shuffled deck.  The 10 days of hard breeze left exactly what everyone had hoped.  Cold, nutrient rich water had rolled from the depths and the stage was set for that which this port is so famous.  Really good salmon fishing!
By Thursday the ocean had flattened out and warm weather combined with easy limits put smiles on everyone’s faces.  The fish were scattered over a huge area from 90 feet of water out to 300 and people were catching both north and south of the harbor entrance.  Trolling is the go to method this time of year but there are enough fish around to making mooching an option.  After loading up on a really nice grade of kings, I pointed Shellback to deep water and capped the day off with a pair of beautiful pacific halibut led by one in the 50 pound class.
Several boats took advantage of the flat ocean and made the run 17 miles south towards Cape Mendocino and the infamous Lost Coast.  It’s resident swarms of untapped rockfish and lingcod crushed shrimp flies, jigs, plastics and whatever else you wanted to drop on them.  Sacks were full in short order.
Looking ahead, fishable weather is in the forecast for the foreseeable future.  Some offshore wind will bring a moderate swell through the early part of this week before smoothing out by Wednesday.  June, July and August are typically the peak of the action and it doesn’t appear this year will disappoint.

**Photo**  Jim Loyd from Petrolia fished with Green Water Fishing Advenutres aboard the Shellback for this awesome pacific halibut in the 50 pound class.  There aren’t too many places in the state that offer a shot at these beauties.  He also bagged a limit of fat salmon to go with it.

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