Re: Seabass on the fly???????

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Posted by Dave Sellers on 2010-09-30 15:40:58 in reply to Seabass on the fly??????? posted by David Merin on 2010-09-30 12:23:40

I used to fish them fanatically. Personally could no longer abide the crowded water in the Monterey Bay when the bite on. But that, again, is personal and should not stop you if you are curious about targeting these great game fish, and they are great.

The type of fishing going on now near Monterey is not kelp edge fishing to smaller bass. Bigger fish tend to travel in small to medium sized schools in open water and almost always near bait whether that be squid or bait fish. A technique called "fly lining" squid is deadly but equally deadly, in my experience is the fly. "fly lining" simply means baiting a hook and letting it drift without weight. Again, squid is the hot bait for these fish. As for the fly, you do not need to use a squid fly. A large deceiver will do just fine. If a squid fly gives you greater confidence, use it. These fish are very curious and will follow the fly until they go into full feed mode, then they will eat the fly just as eagerly as a spring time bluegill eats a nymph. That said, this is best described as generally SLOW fishing. You need to put your time in to hit the feeding windows right and to cross paths with a school. If I can say that there is something I REALLY like about WSB fishing it is the zen element of settling into endless blind casting near or above schools of spawning squid. It's actually fun getting into a groove and allowing the anticipation alone to sustain you. But when it happens it can be one fish after another and the size and strength of these fish is amazing. Don't go light on the rod or the reel. 9 to 10wt rods and a quality reel is important. The bite on any given day does not usually last long and when it turns on, it usually turns on for all the boats in the area. When this happens, it's a little disconcerting seeing old fish wacked and stacked but the meat greed goes into hyper drive with this delectable fish. There are a lot of "commercials" out there too and they can make a ton of money off of this species so they get very good at hooking these fish when they are "in". Whether they are well managed by DFG or not is a question mark. I don't trust the agency to manage an ant farm let alone a dynamic fishery but this species is stocked down south, if that is at all a factor up here I don't know and doubt DFG does either.

As for techniques, You need to cast far to cover the most water. LC or T-14 is a great line choice. You needn't let it sink far but the other boats in the area often disclose fish depth info freely. A long and strong leader is important, knots should be strong and hooks, stout.

Good luck if you go!


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