5-19-18 The forecast didn't look too good and the bar crossing was a little choppy but the wind never really ramped up like expected. We took advantage of the decent conditions and managed to bag a couple of nice Halibut. We also had a couple of heart breakers(and line breakers) that didn't make it all the way into the fish box.
5-18-18 The wind forecast was not too good but we took a chance and ran down to Cape Mendocino for some rock fish and Ling Cod. We started inshore and limited on Black rockfish pretty quickly. Then we slowly made our way offshore with a stop here and there. We picked up a few fish but it took a while to get some Ling Cod located. Once we found them we were able to get Ling Cod limits and we picked up some nice Coppers and Vermilion as well. It was a little bumpy for the trip home.
5-17-18 There was a fair amount of wind out on the Halibut grounds today. Like yesterday, the current was all over the place. Lots of current at one spot and then very little at another. The fishing was pretty slow most of the day with the bite just getting started about when it was our time to head in. We managed a couple of nice size halibut as well as a boatload of Petrale Sole.
5-16-18 Conditions were a little different than yesterday with strong current in some spots and no current in others. It made the fishing a little tough even though the ocean was flat. We worked hard though and were rewarded with four nice Halibut to 47#. We did see lots of salmon feeding on the surface in the morning. There is a lot of bait around and if it sticks around until salmon season opens we should have some really good fishing.
5-15-18 What a difference a day can make. We started fishing in the same place we started yesterday. The current was perfect and that made the difference. We picked up two quick Halibut and then reset our drift. After a little bit Halibut number three came over the rail. Then we hit a bit of a dry spell. There were lots of boats around us fishing for Halibut as well as commercial salmon trollers. Thinking all of that activity might have slowed down the bite we decided to go looking for greener pastures. We dropped on the spot we had fished the day before and after a bit we slung Halibut number four over the rail. With only one Halibut to go, most of the gang switched to Petrale Sole gear. Well, the biggest Halibut of the day slammed one of those little rigs. The angler(Don) knew what he was doing and he gingerly coaxed the fish to the boat. In went the gaff and Halibut number five came over the rail and into the fishbox. Limits by 12:30. It was a great day with a bunch of nice folks.
5-14-18 We ran out to the Halibut grounds on a nice flat ocean with "High Hopes". When we got to the spot where the halibut have been biting lately we thought we had it made......until we dropped our lines to the bottom. The current was vicious. We could barely get our lines down with 2.5#of weight. It was obvious that we had to do something different so we went looking for greener pastures. Eventually, we found a spot where the drift was good and gave it a try there. By the end of the day we managed to scratch out a couple of halibut. We also got a couple of big Petrale per person and a couple of misc. fish including a big Ling Cod that we released.
5-13-18 We were hoping to get out for halibut this morning but buoy reports of 9 foot seas and 15 knots of South wind changed our plans.It looks like it will start to lay down today and should be good fishing weather for the rest of the week.
5-12-18 We have not fished for a few days while the wind has been blowing offshore. This is the Northwest wind that we need in the springtime to get the upwelling kickstarted. I hate to miss the time on the water and Sherry really hates cancelling trips but we need this springtime wind. So far the season has been amazing and I expect that to continue.
5-9-18 The weather on the Lost Coast was absolutely beautiful today. There was almost no wind and warm sunny skies. We were able to move around and try lots of different spots. The fishing was excellent as well and we had a plethora(lots) of different kinds of fish including a rare Wolf Eel (see the photo under "rock fish"). The Ling Cod were a very nice grade and everyone got to pull on some. We had easy limits on the Lings. It looks like the wind is going to blow for the next couple of days but so far this season the fishing has been outstanding. I want to add that we are so lucky to have the nicest people that come to fish with us. Thank you!
5-8-18 We got to experience almost every kind of weather out on the Halibut grounds today. It was thick fog this morning, then it got sunny and nice, then wind out of the East, then rain, then wind out of the West, then some more rain, then wind out of the South for the ride home. The seas were never large so it was quite comfortable on the boat. The Halibut fishing was not red hot but we were able to finish the day just one fish short of limits. The Halibut were all around 30#. We had some other fish like sharks and Petrale Sole to keep things interesting between halibut bites. We saw salmon chasing bait on the surface. There was lots of bait and some whales around. It's looking good for salmon conditions right now. The salmon season starts June 1st.
5-7-18 We had beautiful weather for fishing at Cape Mendocino. Conditions were just right and the fish were biting. It was never wide open but it was a nice steady pace. We limited on lings and rockfish with lots of Cabezone in the mix today. We saw a school of Blues push a big spot of krill to the surface and it looked just like tuna boiling.
5-6-18 We had a perfect day for fishing with light winds and sunny skies. The fishing was not red hot but we managed to put three nice halibut in the boat. We were hoping for a couple more but the skates started to really bite and we caught three or four before we just gave up on the halibut and called it quits.It was another great gang on the boat and there were lots of laughs all day.
5-5-18 Today's halibut trip started out better than yesterday's. We put two nice halibut in the box fairly early and were confident the rest would come. But we worked the area for the rest of the day and never got back on the fish. We had a nice gentleman on the boat that booked another trip for next year. He's 86 years old.
5-4-18 We had quite a day today. We ran out to a spot that we expected to find some Halibut. After a while we had three strong bites almost at the same time. One broke the line and the other two did not stick. We had confidence that we would start catching now. We put one very small halibut in the box followed by a couple of Petrale. But it was really slow. In the afternoon we got a call from a friend with the news that they had two fish in the box and one hanging. And they were only five miles away. We made the run to the spot and then started catching. We had to fish a little late but we finally put the last fish in the box for limits. We almost had a fish for the Captain but a sloppy gaff job sent the fish home. Oh well, looks like hamburgers for dinner tonight.
5-3-18 We took advantage of some very nice ocean conditions to make a run down to the Lost Coast for some quality rockfishing. The fishing was great and we had pretty steady action for most of the day with some big Coppers, Vermillion,and Quillbacks along with a bunch of Ling Cod.
5-2-18 Day two of the 2018 season and it was still too rough to venture offshore. So we took a small crew out to see if the rumors of California Halibut in the Bay were true. And the answer is yes.........and no. We did catch a nice halibut but that was the extent of the action. There is already a lot of bait in the Bay so it won't be long before the fish show up in force. It looks like pretty nice weather so we should get out tomorrow.
5-1-18 SEASONS GREETINGS! Well it's opening day and the wind kept us tied to the dock. We hope to try tomorrow and then it looks like good weather for a few days.
4-26-18 We made it out on the ocean for our first official fishing trip of the 2018 season. While fishing for rock fish, Pacific Halibut and salmon is closed there is an opportunity for Petrale Sole and Sand Dabs. The ocean was flat calm with a slight breeze all day. We ran well offshore to make a couple of deep drops for Petrale as well as check out ocean conditions. Ocean conditions offshore are looking great. We saw lots of Murres and other birds and heard (but didn't see) whales. That's a good sign for salmon when it opens. There was plenty of bait showing on the fishfinder as well. Our first drop did not produce so we went exploring. Our next spot showed good sign on the fishfinder and more birds. We started to catch some really big Petrale as well as some nice Sand Dabs. Then Nick hooked something big that straightened his hook. Then we missed a couple of solid take downs.(This is all on light Petrale gear). Then we hooked up to a nice halibut that we brought boatside and released in the water. Then another straightened hook. Then another nice hookup that turned out to be a big Ling Cod. Then a couple more Petrale and a big skate and we were done for the day. Everyone went home with a nice bag of tasty fillets. Pacific Halibut, Ling Cod and Rockfish open next Tuesday.
4-16-18 GET READY!! Only two more weeks until fishing season starts!
4-12-2018 The excitement for the 2018 salmon season is really building. There is plenty to do before the June 1st start of salmon season though. Rock fish and Pacific Halibut both start May 1st.
4-10-18 We had a great show in Redding. It was a little rainy on Saturday but Sunday was real nice. There was a good turnout and we saw lots of nice folks. It looks like our salmon season will begin June 1st and run until September 3rd. The limit will be two fish per person with a 20 inch minimum size. That's very exciting news for us.
3-31-18 We should know the salmon season dates sometime next week. We will be at the Hunting and Fishing show at the Convention Center in Redding next weekend, April 7th and 8th. Sherry and I hope to see you there. Another bit of news about the Reel Steel. We put in a new engine last week. While the old engine was doing fine, having all new stuff "under the hood" gives us that extra bit of confidence while traveling offshore. We're expecting a great season of fishing this year and don't want to miss minute of it. We hope everyone has great Easter holiday.
3-19-18 It looks like we should get a couple of months of salmon fishing this year. The season will mostly be July and August but we won't know the exact dates until the PFMC meets again in the middle of April. There should be plenty of three year old Klamath fish out there so I expect some good fishing.
3-5-18 We just got back from the Anderson Show today. We saw a lot of old friends and made a few new ones there. The results of the salmon information meeting were very promising. It looks like much better numbers for the Klamath this year with about the same returns estimated for the Sacramento River. What that means is that it is very likely that we will get a salmon season this year. The fisheries managers want to be very cautious however, so I don't expect a very long season. There will be three options available for us to comment on in about two weeks. We wont know the actual season structure until April though. The Pacific Halibut season will be the same as last year and will begin May 1st. If the Albacore and California Halibut show up like they did last year it could be one heck of a fishing season.
2-28-18 The first important salmon meeting will be tomorrow (March 1st). The meeting will be the first opportunity to see if we have any kind of a chance for a salmon season this year. We won't know for sure but we will have an idea of what the chances are. Reel Steel Sportfishing will have a booth again this year at the Anderson Sports Show at the Shasta County Fairgrounds in Anderson. Stop by and see us if you can. Don't worry if you miss us at the Anderson Show because we will be in Redding at the Redding Sportsman Expo April 7th and 8th. The Anderson Show runs this Friday through Sunday.See you there!
2-6-17 It has been a while since we have updated the fishing report here. That's because there is not much going on this time of year. The commercial crab season just started. The Halibut Commission meetings ended with a "hung jury" and all's quiet on the salmon front until the meetings in March. We will have some notion on the possibilities of a salmon season after the first March meeting but nothing will be official until April. I expect some reduction in the Pacific Halibut quota but the season structure should still have fishing around the first of the month beginning in May.
1-7-18 We pulled in our crab pots for the season (probably, unless we get some really good weather and the commercial season doesn't start). The crabbing was excellent until the very end with limits every time out. Thank you to everyone that came out crabbing with us this year. We are taking reservations for the 2018 fishing season and a few prime dates are already taken. We do not know if there will be a salmon season or not this year or what the Pacific Halibut season structure will be. The rockfish season should be the same as last year with a start date of May 1st. California Halibut fishing should be good again this year since we saw lots of short fish last summer. Pacific Halibut will MOST LIKELY be the first week or two of each month beginning in May. Hopefully, we will see the tuna show up again this year. We made eight tuna trips last year and caught fish on every trip.
1-6-18 We made two trips today for crab. On the second trip we had one pot that wouldn't budge off of the bottom. We had plenty of time so we worked a while and managed to break it loose. The puller was straining but managed to pull our pot to the surface. There was a commercial pot with a line wrapped around our pot. We got both pots in the boat plus limits of crab for everyone. The owner of the commercial pot happens to be a good friend of ours so it was a win for everyone.
1-4-17 We have not been out for a couple of days. It looks like the weather will be good enough to get out after some crab this weekend. We may bring in our gear after that. We have some room on Saturday if you have a hankerin' for some fresh crab.
1-2-17 We braved the fog in our quest for fresh crab this morning. Visibility was limited all the way out to the crab grounds but as soon as we headed back the fog lifted and it was a beautiful morning. (Everyone got limits of crab too)
1-1-18 HAPPY NEW YEAR!! We started out the new year with a successful trip to the crab grounds. We have been fortunate to have some beautiful weather during this crab season and today was no different. The air was warm and the ocean was calm.
12-31-17 It was a nice morning out on the ocean. The crabbing continues to be very good and we were able to make two trips before the tide change. It looks like we are in for a weather change by mid week. We have sure been lucky as far as ocean conditions are concerned but we could use some rain now.
12-30-17 We had hopes this morning of making what would have been our last fishing trip of 2017. Alas, the forecast called for wind after a morning cold front. The swell was already up a bit and the tides were all wrong if we wanted to come in early. So we went with our original plan which was crab. We had one of the best pulls of crab so far this year with 25 or more per pot. The ocean was nice but as I type this I see that the buoy has winds that have increased 18 knots in the last hour. We have some room between now and Tuesday and are full on Wednesday and then the weather comes up a little.
12-29-17 We had a fun group on for crab today. Four young ladies ages 7 to 11 and a nice couple from Great Britain. Everyone was excited for A CRABBING ADVENTURE. The crab pots were full and everyone got their limit of crab to take home to cook. The seals and sea lions also put in an appearance, much to the delight of our younger guests.
12-28-17 It was an amazing day to fish for rock fish and Ling Cod on the Lost Coast. On the way to the grounds we watched as we passed by a pod of whales. On the way back the whales put on a show and were breaching clear out of the water. The ocean was calm all day with very little current and no wind which made the fishing easy. And the fish bit all day. We caught lots of big Vermilion and Coppers. Limits of Blacks and Ling Cod plus some huge Cabezon. After watching the whale show on the way back in we stopped and picked up limits of crab for everyone.
12-24-17 It was very nice out on the ocean again today. Everyone on the boat went home with their crab limit.
12-23-17 Other than a flat calm ocean, today was a repeat of yesterday with limits of crab all around.
12-22-17 We made two trips out for crab today and managed to get limits for everyone. It looks like we are full for the weekend but have room next week.
12-19-17 We made an early morning crab trip hoping to beat the weather. The swells were not too big but we managed to be working gear right through the worst of the front with 20 knot winds and very steep seas. I t all worked out and we came in with limits of crab for everyone on board. We will be doing crab trips this weekend and the weather looks real nice.
12-18-17 We were back on the ocean again today looking for crabs. The pots continue to fish well with 15 to 25 keeper crabs per trap. They seem a little fuller each trip. Everyone went home with their limit.
12-13-17 We enjoyed another successful crab trip this morning. The ocean is coming up a little this week but we should still be able to get out for crab.
12-10-17 Sunshine, flat calm ocean, no current, loads of crabs. It just doesn't get any better than that.
12-9-17 We had another epic day fishing for rock fish and ling cod on the Lost Coast. The breeze was blowing a little on the way down but by our second drift the wind had quit and it was as perfect of a weather day as it could be. The sun was shining and the fish were biting. The variety was great again with Blacks, Blues, Coppers, Quillbacks, Yellowtail, Chinas, Vermilions, and of course Ling Cod all going into the fish box. The drift was just right and it was a great crew, in other words, a perfect day in every respect. On the way in we stopped and pulled three pots to get everyone a limit of crab to take home. What a day!
12-8-17 We had another nice morning to pull crab pots. There were plenty of crabs to go around and everyone went home with their limit of 10 crabs.
12-7-17 It has been quite a few years since we have been able to fish for rockfish and ling cod in December. With a favorable ocean forecast we drove past our crab pots and headed down to the Lost Coast to try for some tasty white fish. There was a slight easterly breeze first thing but then it just got nicer and nicer until everyone was down to their t-shirts and enjoying the warm sunshine on a glass flat, calm ocean. We landed some rock fish and a couple of smallish lings before we found a hot-spot. You know, one of those places that keeps kicking out giant lings plus vermilions and quillbacks and blacks and blues and, well you know.... everything. Eventually we had limits of nice ling cod and a box of colorful rock fish so we headed back to check and see what was in our crab pots. Well, they were full and we pulled just three pots to get the sixty crabs we needed for limits. It looks like everyone on today's trip will be eating good for quite some time.
12-6-17 The excellent crabbing just keeps rolling along with limits on every time out. The crabs are definitely starting to fill out as well.
12-5-17 Just like the rest of us during the Holiday season the crabs have been putting on some weight. We checked some pots yesterday and brought some crabs home to eat. Some of them were completely full and some were probably around 75 percent. So they are getting fuller. The weather looks good all week and we have room on Friday if we do two trips.
12-2-17 We still haven't made it back out since the swells came up the other day. There is good news on the horizon though. The weather comes down significantly for all of next week. We are full on Thursday for a rock fish/ crab trip but it looks like it will be nice all the way through next weekend. We may do another rock fish trip on Saturday or Sunday. It should be good for crabbing offshore Tuesday through Sunday.
11-29-17 We haven't been out on the water for a few days due to weather. The ocean swells hit 20 feet today. It's a good time to stay home or do boat work. The weather looks like it should be better next week. In fact, if the long range reports are accurate(they seldom are) then it looks like we may be able to do some rock fishing by the end of next week. Right now,Thursday looks to be the best day but that may change.
11-24-17 The ocean was very nice today and we were able to make three trips. The crabbing was very good and everyone went home with limits again. The trees that were drifting around our crab pots missed us and everything was where it was supposed to be.
11-23-17 HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!! Here's wishing everyone a Thanksgiving filled with food, family, and friends. Here at Reel Steel Sportfishing we have been blessed to make so many great friends in the last 11 years. Sharing what the ocean has to offer has been more rewarding than we could have ever imagined. Thanks to all of you for making OUR world better. The Reel Steel Crew.
11-22-17 The weather was up just a little but we managed to get everyone limits of crab. There were a couple of big trees drifting just outside of our string of crab pots. Hopefully, the trees drift through without catching our (or anyone else) crab gear and taking it for a ride. Just another hazard of crab fishing.
11-21-17 It was pretty windy but no swell offshore on the crab grounds today. Other than some spray on the windshield the wind wasn't a problem. We got limits of crab for everyone today.
11-20-17 A weather front came through with some wind so we did not go today.
11-19-17 It was another good day of crabbing. There was a little more current today and that made finding the pots a little more challenging since he buoys were not always showing. With the help of the crew an a good GPS we found our gear and easily got everyone their limits of crabs. I looks like the weather should be good enough to get out this coming week.
11-18-17 Got the privilege to take a group of Sea Scouts out for a crab trip this morning. It was the first time out on the ocean for some of them. It is always a treat to share our love of the ocean and all it has to offer with young people. The crab pots were full again so we did not spend a lot of time working our gear. We had a second trip with a very special family (and Lonnie too) that is going to have a crab feed tonight. The ocean was glass flat so it was a perfect morning all the way around.
11-17-17 The ocean laid down real nicely and the sun was shining as we made our way out to the crab grounds. The pots continue to be full and it appears that the crab are starting to fill out. We pulled three pots for five limits and even threw some crabs back for next time. It looks like good ocean conditions for a few days so now is a good time to come out and get a limit of crabs. We have some room available each day so give Sherry a call at 707-499-4925 if you are ready for a fresh, delicious crab dinner..
11-11-17 We made three trips out for crab today. The ocean conditions were nice and the crab pots were full.
11-7-17 We made a couple of crab runs again today. The ocean was pretty nice so it was a treat just to be out there. The pots were full again so everyone went home with their limits of crab. It looks like rain and wind for the next couple of days and will come back down on Saturday. We have room available for this weekend. (This report is for you, John.)
11-6-17 Crab season opened on Saturday the fourth. We set our pots that morning in the hopes of seeing some crabs find there way in. After just a couple of days of crabbing it's obvious that there are LOTS of crabs out there. They are all nice big crabs too. The only downside right now is that they are not filled out yet. They still taste delicious ( we proved that the last couple of dinners) but they are not as full as we like them to be. It looks like it should be good crabbing for a while.
11-1-17 !!CRAB!! We will be setting our pots this coming Saturday. The price for a crab trip will be $70 again this year. If you are over 15 years old you MUST have a California fishing license. "One day" licenses are available for around $14 if you don't already have one. It is a pain to get one when you are at the boat so please have it when you show up. The crab are supposed to be plentiful this year. We'll know for sure on Saturday. The weather looks OK until next Wednesday so I would suggest trying to get a spot early next week. We will continue to crab until December, weather permitting.
10-31-17 Happy Halloween! It was an amazing day fishing the Lost Coast. The swell was bigger than predicted but without much wind at the buoys, we made the decision to "Go for it". The first couple of stops only yielded a couple of Black Rockfish so we went on the hunt for better fishing. Eventually we got located and the fish were biting. Big Lings,Yellows, Coppers and Canary's went into the box. At the end of the day we had limits of Lings and big rock fish. Most of the time there was no wind and we fished in T-shirts. What a great way to end October. Now on to crab season.
10-29-17 The morning started off right with a beautiful, glassy Bay and plenty of wildlife all around us while we looked for some tasty California Halibut. The Halibut must have been kicking back enjoying the weather too because they did not bite like they have been most of the year. We were getting lots of bites but the fish would hit a bait and stun it but would not come back to eat it. Lots of action but not lots of hookups. We did manage to hook 25 fish but only five were keepers. We might get one more shot at them before the rain starts on Friday. !!!CRAB SEASON OPENS THIS SATURDAY!!! We are taking reservations NOW. Give Sherry a call and get yourself some tasty crab. Only $70 for 10 crab! (you will need a Ca fishing license ) Call 707-499-4925
10-27-17 We had good enough weather today to make a run to the Lost Coast. While not the wide open fishing that we experienced for most of the summer the fishing was pretty good. We managed limits of rock fish but were two fish short of our Ling Cod limits. The change in the depth of water that we are allowed to fish has definitely had an impact on our fishing success. The ocean was a little bouncy with 6 foot swells and 10 knots of wind.
10-18-17 With rain in the forecast, the end of Bay fishing could be on its way so we decided to give it another shot. The fishing started off a little slow in the morning but then it just kept getting better and better. At one point we had two halibut in the net and another rod getting bit. That makes for some exciting fishing. The ratio of short fish to keepers was good and we had limits without any problem.
10-16-17 We were back out on the ocean today looking for rock fish. We are back to the 20 fathom depth restriction so we were somewhat limited on our options. With that excuse out of the way, the fishing was not that great. We never did find much in the way of Ling Cod but were able to boat some decent Cabezone. Everyone went home with a good variety of rock fish with some Vermilion and Quillbacks in the mix but not the big bags of fillets that we are used to.
10-15-17 It was a great time with a great family on the Bay today. The kids showed off their fishing prowess by reeling in Halibut after Halibut. To be honest, it was hard just keeping up with the net. Lonnie was on the boat too and he caught his share but the kids stole the show. At the end of a (short) day everyone had caught their limit plus plenty of short fish that were released.
10-14-17 It was an eerily beautiful morning on the Bay. There were wisps of fog rolling around and then blue skies. No wind. The fishing started off a little slow but then we found our groove and started to put some keeper halibut in the fish box. After about four hours of fishing we had limits on ice and had released another thirty fish. It was a great morning.
10-12-17 After hearing reports that the California Halibut bite had totally died off we had to go and find out for ourselves. So with high hopes and low expectations we left the dock at 8am. In just three hours of fishing we had our limits of nice size fish and had released another 15 more. This fishing will probably end after the first major rains but with the crummy offshore weather it is nice to have some quality fishing to fall back on. It is beginning to look like the weather may settle down a little this weekend and into early next week.
10-10-17 The weather offshore has been crummy. It doesn't look like it is going to improve real soon either. We are watching it and hopefully, we are going to get back out there at some point.
10-6-17 It doesn't happen often but the Ling Cod and rock fish were not in a biting mood today. There was a long-duration swell and we have seen that put the fish off of their feed in the past. We worked all of the spots that have been producing as recently as yesterday. We were able to get limits of Blacks and an assortment of other fish but nothing came easy or in big numbers. It looks like the weather is going to be crummy offshore for a bit so maybe the fish will be hungry the next time we can get out.
10-5-17 Today was pretty much a repeat of yesterday. The Ling Cod were really biting and we had easy limits of a nice grade of fish. The rock fish bite was a little slower and we came up a little short there but the grade was good with a couple of big Vermilion and some nice Cabs and Coppers.
10-4-17 Back on the water again! The ocean finally laid down enough for us to get back after the rock fish and Ling Cod. They must have missed us because they were really biting. We easily got our limits of Lings and had a nice box of big Coppers, Blacks, Cabs and more. We had a newlywed couple from Wisconsin on their first trip to the West Coast. They got to see some great scenery and catch a bunch of tasty fish to ship home.
9-28-17 We had a real nice day on the Lost Coast chasing rock fish. The weather was very nice. We were treated to a great whale show as there were Humpback whales feeding and blowing and breaching all around the boat. Every direction you looked there were whale