Salmon fishing on the North Coast is incredible. You can really have a lot of fun fishing with the right gear, catching limits on most days. Chinook or king salmon are notoriously strong fighters. I have put fifty lb. fish on the boat and many 20-30 lb. salmon when there are good numbers of fish in our local waters. Generally speaking, we don't have to travel very far out into our waters to find them. I use downriggers to catch fish and anchovies for bait along with hoochies, spoons and other necessary tools to harvest some of the best tasting fish available. Bleeding and icing your fish after the catch is important so you leave with the highest quality seafood available. Below are some salmon pictures from the last several years.
Although we must travel a bit to fish the waters off of Cape Mendocino, when the weather is right, the ride is well worth it. I usually make a joke about fishing in Jurassic Park. Fishing for bottomfish such as black rock cod, ling cod, cabazon, greenling, and vermilion can be a real joy. Everytime you put your gear down, you don't really know what you're going to bring up. Limits are generally the rule with an occasional halibut mixed in while rock fishing using jigs to drop down and at times with the correct drift using spinning gear. Sometimes we throw swim baits or use bait to really enhance your fishing experience. There are times while reeling in rockcod that a big lingcod may decide to take your fish and gets hooked and you end up with it, too. These waters aren't able to be fished every day due to weather conditions so there are giant concentrations of fish to be caught. Bottom fish are also bleed and iced so that you will be eating the freshest fish available.
Albacore fishing is really a favorite of mine. Hearing five or six reels screaming all at once is really a hard thing to beat when it comes to fishing. When live bait is available we will be taking it along. There are many different ways to catch albacore from trolling, using swimbaits, and irons, but using live bait is truly amazing. Albacore range from about ten to thirty lbs. and really pull hard for the size of the fish. Getting several runs is standard. Bleeding and icing is the rule to preserving one of my favorite fish to eat or can for later.