This week my family went to the Oregon coast expecting grey skies and cold. Surprise. Blue skies and 80 degrees. What do ya know? I did take a couple rods and my all round salt box. the locals fished bait. The tide was ripping and all I could think about was the striped bass that populate the Umpqua- with a minimum 30 in limit size. There was a ton of bait, anchovies, working and the birds were on them. No boats! Jared and I rigged up and up and walked out on this massive jetty. The work that went into this jetty was astounding. Rocks that had to be 20 plus tons. When I say birds, I mean classic, pelicans, herring gulls, black backed gulls, guilemots, cormorants. Everything rafted up and diving on bait balls. Occasionaly, about three hundred yards off, I could see fish surfacing and blitzing. No way could we reach them. I tied on a yozuri pink jig, probably 3 oz and heaved away. Our neighbors were fishing clams and bringing in a steady stream of what they termed sea trout, which were actually greenling sea bass. None bigger than a couple pounds. I'm sure they thought we were idiots throwing artificials on braided line. Tons of structure along th edge of the jetty. Halfway through I had a decent strike on 15lb fluoro and I kept the pressure on. It is always nice to be rewarded for your efforts, yes? I landed a 5lb lingcod; this toothy devil that did not deserve to be landed but he came in and I lifted him clear. Lots of teeth and barnicles to clear, so he wanted to die apparently. I gave him to one of the locals who was thrilled to bring it home to dear old dad.
If I had but one rig to bring with me in heaven it would be a bucktail jig (or clouser, arguably the same thing). Anything that swims finds the dipping, diving action irrestible. The yozuri is sharp and fluorescent. I guess I should get a few more now that I lost that one. I should also return to fish a fly in the headwaters of the Umpqua. It is supposed to be the most pristine steelhead water along the coast. I am a believer in always bringing your rod and checking new territory out. See my goofy face and fish below.
2 years ago