Fish Sniffer Magazine Volume 41 Issue 18 - Page 19

1 Rated Outdoor Radio Show for 26 years ! with your host Bob Simms
VOL . 41 • ISS . 18
November 11 , 2022
19

WHAT ’ S HOT continued from page 2

we quickly released . The water temperature was sitting at about 68 degrees , which is a great way to go through a ton of bait if you want to feed shakers all day . We headed back to the ramp at 2:00 pm for a passenger switch . That afternoon I dropped Jim off at the dock , and picked up Jason Carlisle who drove down I-5 from his home in Elk Grove . We headed out immediately , but only picked up one small keeper before darkness fell upon us . We planned to switch over and fish for sturgeon all night , and anchored up northeast of Pittsburg on the outgoing tide . Within a twenty minute span , we boated and released two nice sturgeon that hammered small pieces of cut lamprey . We thought we were in for an epic evening , but Mother Nature had other ideas . By 11:30 pm , whitecaps were crashing against the aluminum hull of the boat in the dark . This not-so-fun experience was our cue to
This energetic striped bass was released by the author on October 7 near Sherman Island when the water temperature was 68 degrees . Jack ’ s favorite striper bait , chicken livers , was used to entice the fish to take the hook .
Photo Courtesy of Jack Naves
pull anchor and spend the night in the protected waters of Broad Slough . Our planned sturgeon fishing was blown-out by weather , but we still had the next day to venture for stripers . The following morning featured blasting winds and slow fishing . Once again , the turn to the incoming tide and diminishing winds flipped the switch from miserable weather to enjoyable conditions . We finally got onto a nice group of stripers , boating five keepers between 20 and 32 inches soaking chicken livers . We hit the road around 1:00 pm , feeling weary from the two-day adventure . My next trip wasn ’ t quite as lengthy , but the weather conditions were much more enjoyable . Several weeks later on October 24 , I headed out with Patti Parker to test out her beautiful new Tracker boat . The water temperature was a much more respectable 62 degrees . After quite a bit of tweaking and adjustments
with the sonar / GPS unit , we were finally dialed in for hunting sturgeon . We set pick on some nice marks , and then deployed rods baited with lamprey . As the outgoing tide tapered off , the boat began to swing to the left . Gentle waves lapped against the hull , and the rods loaded up and slowly dragged their sinkers across the river bottom in unison with the drift . Each rod tip would arch towards the water and then pop back into position as its sinker was pulled along with the meandering boat . The rod to my right skipped a beat , and seemed somewhat out of synch with the other rods . I jumped into position by the reel , but it was so rhythmic that I thought is was just my sinker being dragged along by the drifting boat . WHAM-WHAM . The rod tip surged , and I could hear my braided line whizzing through the guides on my rod ! “ It ’ s on !” I shouted , as I frantically
reeled and lifted my rod out of the holder . Now standing on the carpeted platform on the back of Patti ’ s boat , I could see my line angling up towards the surface . Before I could think , a massive white sturgeon rocketed straight to the sky like Apollo 11 launching for the moon . The massive fish touched down with a huge splash , and then shot horizontally out of the whitewater like a sprinter launching out of the starting blocks . “ Big one ”, I commented , thinking that it was either a big keeper or an oversized sturgeon . Next , the fish dove straight under the boat . I was nervous about the way that the sturgeon had landed its jump , thinking that it might have damaged my line in the process . I had my thumb on the star drag and was just about to lessen the pressure when I felt a dreaded pop . It was a breakoff , most likely due to the sturgeon ’ s scutes rubbing against my 65 pound test braided line . With the heartbreaking loss behind us , we bounced to a new spot for a fresh start on the incoming tide . With no bites and only massive splashes from jumping sturgeon to taunt us , we switched over to striper fishing for the rest of the afternoon . Although the conditions were beautiful , we stumbled onto a massive zone of undersized stripers , with only one keeper to take home for fish tacos . As of press time , the water temperature in the west delta is sitting at 62 degrees . With overnight lows getting cooler each evening , we are now venturing into the prime temperature zone for striped bass . My favorite water temperature is 58 degrees , so we are just around the corner from wide-open striper fishing . Get out there when you can , and don ’ t forget that fall is also a prime time for sturgeon fishing as well . Nature ’ s gifts await those who venture .
The author poses with a taco-worthy striped bass on the West Delta on October 8 . These mid-sized linesides make for excellent table fare when eaten in moderation .
Photo Courtesy of Jack Naves

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