Fish Sniffer Magazine Volume 42 Issue 02 | Page 10

10 February 3 , 2023 MAP FEATURE VOL . 42 • ISS . 2


hen the water is high and muddy in the Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers and Delta sloughs like it has been after the recent winter storms , the Port of Sacramento and Sacramento Deep Water Ship Channel offer anglers a chance to catch striped bass , black bass , crappie and catfish in clearer , protected water . Four anglers - Mark Wilson , Mike Steer , Ron Retzlaff and Neil Koepke – decided to check out the striped bass action in the channel and port on Wednesday , Jan . 25 . They were pleased with what they found after making a 30 mile run in a boat to the port from the Hogback Island boat launch on Steamboat Slough in Walnut Grove . “ We started trolling in the deep water channel about five miles from the port ,” said Wilson . “ As we trolled towards the port , the water became clearer and the water temperature rose up to 50-1 / 2 degrees . We caught and released a total of 13 fish , including 10 keepers and 3 shakers up to 5 pounds .” They ran three rods between the anglers , “ The water was milky further down , but it got clearer and clearer and the water temperature went up 1 / 10 a degree every half a mile down the channel . We were trolling with deep-running Yu-Zuri Crystal Minnows in chartreuse and red head / white body at 12 to 15 feet deep ,” stated Wilson . They were not the only ones who caught stripers that day . “ We saw a couple of stripers caught by bank guys and other fish landed by minnow drifters and boaters jigging with spoons ,” said Wilson . “ The weather was beautiful . We saw 8 deer down by the water drinking , bald eagles , osprey
The calm , protested waters of the Barge Canal and Port of West Sacramento offer excellent access for rowing and kayaking . Photo by Dan Bacher

Port of West Sacramento / Ship Channel : Popular Destination for Striped Bass

and lots of ducks and geese . There was no wind . The weather was cool , but we were prepared with layers of clothes .” On Friday , Jan . 27 , Clyde Wands of Sacramento reported top-notch striper fishing for three anglers fishing in Ron Retzlaff ’ s boat in the deep water channel and port . The fishermen caught and released 12 keeper striped bass to 10 pounds and 15 undersized fish while trolling with Berkley Bass Dredger lures . For somebody using a motorized boat , there are only two ways to get access to the port area - become a member of the Washington Outboard Club by getting on a waiting list or make the long run from Rio Vista or Hogback Island to the Deepwater Channel and port . However , there is a hand-carry boat ramp located at the Barge Canal Recreational Access in West Sacramento . Motorized boats aren ’ t allowed . The barge canal ramp is just fine if you want fish from a kayak , float tube , canoe or other non-motorized boat . Shore anglers park at this access and walk to their fishing spot ; you can ’ t park on the levees anymore . The access is only open from dawn until dusk . For many years , public bank angling access to the Port of Sacramento and the Sacramento Deep Water Ship Channel was problematic . This all changed in November 2007 when the Barge Canal Recreational Access to the port area was opened by the City of West Sacramento . Located at 2100 Jefferson Boulevard in West Sacramento across from the South River Road , the access features an all-weather vehicle parking area , an
Rick Tietz , of Blade Runner Tackle , shows off a limit of quality stripers that he landed while fishing his spoons near the Port of West Sacramento .
Photo Couertesy of Rick Tietz