Although we are nearly two weeks into the ocean salmon season, precious few fish have been caught in local waters.
Things could be looking up with improved weather in the forecast and some reports of fish being caught out of Morro Bay on Wednesday.
Harold Lovett at the Port San Luis Boatyard said anglers aboard two boats dispatched Wednesday out of the Sports Launch came in with zero fish. But Donnie Sims of Creston, a friend of Lovett, said he caught two salmon fishing out of Morro Bay in his private boat.
The first fish caught around 10:30 weighed 12 pounds. John Rowley skippered the Fiesta on a crew trip out of Virg’s Landing on Wednesday. There were five on board including the captain. Two salmon to 15 pounds were caught on green Apex presentations.
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Captain Sharon Rowley skippered the Fiesta on Sunday when nine anglers also caught two salmon, 8 and 9 pounds, on green Apex.
Harrell Kimball had this post on the fishreports.net Web site: “If the weather holds, we should have great weather here and at Monterey Thursday through Sunday.”
Gray, Kahler team up to win
Atascadero’s Gene Gray and Dusty Kahler changed their planned game plan and came away with a first place, 26.99-pound limit worth $2,840 at Lopez Lake on Saturday.
Their championship, coupled with fourth- and fifth- place finishes in their two previous American Bass Pacific Coast events propelled the duo to the top of the standings with 415 points and an 11-point edge on Fred Ledesma and Jose Canchola.
The winners chucked their original game plan after they found bigger fish in the main lake body during Friday’s practice.
“Senkos worked really well for us,” Gray said. “We caught about 30 fish during the tournament. Fish either like or hate the fluttering action of Senkos. Either way they eat it. That bait has been a key to my success in many tournaments.”
Added Kahler: “We were culling 4-pound fish and finished with a trio of bass that were clones. The fish we chose to weigh for big fish honors was 5.81 pounds, the tourney’s second heaviest fish. It accounted for $405 of our winnings.”
Damon Meeks of Atascadero and Erik Zillig of Cambria zoomed into third place with a late flurry. “At 11:30 we had only 7 1/2 pounds of fish, but at the 3:30 weigh-in, we finished with 20.37 pounds,” Meeks said. The team changed tactics but Meeks was mum about it. He plans to enter a Tri Valley event at Lopez in two weeks. American Bass Pacific, Top 10 (all 5-fish limits), Weight, Winnings — 1. Gene Gray, Dusty Kahler, Atascadero, 26.99 pounds, $2,840; 2. Jason Letterman, Scott Mullins, Salinas, 26.00 pounds, $1,555; 3. Damon Meeks, Atascadero, Erik Zillig, Cambria, 20.37 pounds, $680; 4. Fred Ledesma, Soledad, Jose Canchola, Salinas, 17.78 pounds, $250; 5. Joe Gardiner, Scott, Hellesen, San Luis Obispo, 16.74 pounds, $200; 6. Jason Newby, Chad West, Bakersfield, 16.88 pounds, $200; 7.Dean Krambeck, Calvin Long, Vandenberg Village, 16.57 pounds; 8. Darrin Bishop, Paso Robles, Dean Miller, Tulare, 16.14 pounds; 9. John White, San Luis Obispo, Steve Bereda, Santa Margarita, 15.59 pounds; 10. Tom Guidry, Vandenberg Village, Stan Skou, Los Alamos, 15.56 pounds.
1st Big Fish, 8.94 pounds, Letterman & Mullins, $675; 2nd Big Fish, 5.82 pounds, Gray & Kahler, $405; 3rd Big Fish, 5.35 pounds, Meeks & Zillig, $270.
Lintner moves on to Virginia
With one-quarter of the Bassmaster Elite series behind him, Arroyo Grande’s Jared Lintner and the other 92 competitors begin action today at Smith Mountain Lake, Moneta, Va.
To just break even on their entry fee alone, anglers must earn $40,000.
This will be Lintner’s third time at Smith Mountain. He placed 34th in 2007 with 15 fish weighing 31 pounds, 13 ounces for a $10,000 pay day. Last year he placed 68th. His two-day, 21-pound weight left him payless.
Only three Elite fishermen, the two $100,000 winners and Skeet Reese f Auburn, Ca., with second- and fifth-placings for $40,000, have covered their entry fees so far.
Lintner’s 10th-place finish at Clear Lake paid $11,500. He is tied for 26th place in the Angler of the Year standings with 415 points and is 32nd in Elite winnings. Twenty-three anglers have zero earnings to date.
Salmon fishing trips are scheduled for 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The pre-paid fare is $89. Call 772-1222 for reservations and more information.
Salmon fishing trips are scheduled Thursday through Sunday from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $80. Call 595-7200 for reservations and more information. A whale watching trip is scheduled for 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday.
Port San Luis Boatyard
Nine boats were launched last week but no salmon were caught.
Cachuma Trout Derby
Entrants in the 15th annual Cachuma Trout Derby this weekend will compete for more than $5,000 in prizes.
The entry fee is $35 for anglers 11 years and older while those 10 and under will pay $10. The lake has received 16,000 pounds of planter trout this season. Two days prior to the derby another 4,000 pounds will be planted. Included will be 250 fish bearing tags.
The top prize of $2,000 will go to the entrant who catches the highest-numbered tag trout.
The event begins at 6 a.m. Saturday and closes at noon Sunday. It is a major fundraiser for the Cachuma Lake Nature Center.
Chet Reeves of Bakersfield caught a 4-pound, 7-ounce largemouth on a plastic worm. Teresa Probasco, Bakersfield, landed a 21⁄2-pound bass at Strawberry Flat with a plastic worm. Twelve-year-old Mikayla Mireles of Arroyo Grande caught a 11⁄4-pound smallmouth on a nightcrawler in the Arroyo Grande Arm.
Santa Margarita Lake
Few anglers are having success these days but Janet Ross of Santa Margarita reeled in a 1-pound redear. She was fishing with a nightcrawler by The Narrows on Friday.
Recent rain, coupled with cold weather, has shut off the fish bite while raising the lake level, Heritage Ranch resident Dave Rymal said. “There are a bunch of us fishing at night but not catching anything in the dirty water,” he said. “We’re trying, but without catches.”