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Kayaking out of Humboldt Bay - 6/12 and 6/13/2011


Saturday I heard on Humboldt Tuna Club of fish being caught in shallower water off Humboldt Bay, and I saw that Sunday was to be flat and calm again, but the family plan was to go to the river, and we have to get an early start for that...  I woke at 6 and checked the forecast and Eel River buoy - flat, calm...  Over the next 45 minutes I geared up and got myself out to the South Jetty parking lot with my salmon gear, immersion gear, and the old Ocean Kayak Scrambler XT - it was light enough to launch off the rocks.  I found a good spot to hop down the boulders with the gear, got to work and was paddling in 15 minutes.  I worked hard at 7:45AM to paddle out against the last of the incoming tide which was to be high at 10:08 - a tricky spot, as I had to be leaving by slack tide around 10AM in order to get home for the family day.  For 20-30 minutes or so I kept a strong pace as I paddled out of the Humboldt Bay Jaws against the tide - I saw dolphins along the way and birds up in the distance signifying bait right at the bay opening.  Once I got there and cleared the bar I baited up and trolled out toward the bell buoy - it's red here versus the green bell buoy at Shelter Cove.  I had about 45 minutes to troll, and I could see so many powerboats in the distance and hear them on the radio as they felt out the bite for the morning.  The word was lots of silvers and shaker kings.  I would be happy with a bite!  I got a few good tacks in with a nice chovie behind a dodger giving me a chance at a king, but it wasn't to be on this mission.  I wrapped my opportunity up and drifted a nice herring along the jetty on my way back to the truck.  Pulled the yak and gear off the water and jammed home to pull off a successful river day with the family.  Good Times, but I wish I'd have had more time to paddle out further on such a calm day.  Later that day I monitored the buoy reports and it was one of those days where the wind never came up past 5 knots or so all the way through the evening.

Monday looked like it would produce more calmness, as the 9AM forecast said "variable winds to 5 knots".  So I bailed work early, hooked up with Matanaska, and we were to launch at King Salmon at 2:30 to drift out along the jetties for the 4:08 low tide - that would allow for an offshore trolling journey with the return being any time as the tide would be coming in from 4:08 until an hour after dark.  Well, that variable winds forecast was BS, because we arrived at the launch at 1:45 to see whitecaps at the bar - from 2 MILES away!  We decided to launch anyway as we both had a pass and we figured to be able to fish along the jetties anyway.  We ended up paddling over 5 miles on the GPS and it was basically wind-torture.  We had choves and herring nicely presented along a quarter mile of the south jetty for a while for no bites before retreating across to behind the inner corner of the north jetty for a bit where we drifted more beautiful bait along 60-15' bottom all the way back to launch.  For NO bites all afternoon long!  We were glad to get out for the paddle though, and we'll be ready to get out again soon.   :)

I'll try to post some pics..

Too bad about no bites Eric,,, but way to get out there before the family fun on Saturday!  Yeah, that forecast for Sunday was one of those "oops, we missed that one" calls by the weather folks.  I spent Saturday surfing and fishing for red tail SP,,, and drinking LOTS of cervezas, which gave me a foggy sloshy head Sunday morning.  Chummed the water around Flat Iron a few times (much to the amusement of my buddies), but stayed out from 6-10 and managed 5 blacks and 3 crabs.


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