Paddling local estuary Monday from 6 am

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Jim Wallace, Jul 27, 2013.

  1. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
    Somewhere on the Coast
    Ratings: +544 / 0
    until 1pm. Its infested with "racers" today, and I don't race unless I think that I have a chance to win.
    The tide looks better for heading in to tour and fly fish for cutts on monday morning. That's launched and paddling by 6am, so I'll be there getting ready earlier than that. Dawn patrol. I plan to be back no later than 1pm, so I don't have to fight the tide.

    For those of you forum members who have expressed interest in maybe paddling back in with me, now's your chance.;) There will be other opportunities, but the tide and wind forecast look to be aligned for good paddling and fly casting on Monday morning. Helps to have an anchor system on your fishing kayak, too.

    I can't imagine why anyone would want to leave all the Pinks, Coho and nice Searuns up in the Salish, just to endure clouds of mosquitoes (when launching & returning) out here in a brackish estuary, and have to do some marathon paddling as well, for only a chance at some 9" to 15" searun coastal cutts. Its a great estuary tour, though.

    I only have to drive 4 miles to get to my launch site, so that's my excuse.:rolleyes:

    I'm heading out to check the surf, and I have to attend another surfer's B-day party later, so I might not get back to check this until later tonight, or tomorrow sometime.
  2. Stonefish Triploid, Humpy & Seaplane Hater

    Posts: 3,861
    Pipers Creek
    Ratings: +1,263 / 1
    Good luck and be safe.
    Myself and several other board member witnessed a pretty scary incident today involving a kayak. Kudos to Dimebrite for recognizing what was going on and jumping into action.
    A few lost rods is a hell of a lot better then a loss of life.
  3. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
    Somewhere on the Coast
    Ratings: +544 / 0
    Thanks, SF. The surf wasn't all that hot looking, and had a swarm of filthy weekend warriors on it when I went for my surf check, but I was safely covered up in my UPF clothing, and survived the parking lot scene OK.
    The party got going with a keg of local-brewed red beer, and there was certainly too much food...everything from pulled pork to smoked oysters. I was the oldest one there, and I hoped I set an example by refusing the passed bottle of tequila. I finally relented enough to pour a drop in the bottom of my cup when someone suggested a toast to our recently departed fellow surf bro, but at least that served to re-inforce my intense dislike of that nasty poison.
    Fortunately, the outdoor burning ban had us confine our fire to a small 3' circle in fire ring, so the traditional large bon-fire and firewalking antics never happened. I think that saved me. I might have been tempted to compete.:eek: Instead, we had a couple of frisbees going back and forth for several hours. One of them took my napkin right off the picnic table in front of me, missing my beer by only millimeters. That was scary!

    As for going paddling and cutthroat angling with my fly rods tomorrow, the conditions look to be excellent! :cool: Overcast and drizzle thru mid-morning! Doesn't hardly get any better than that!
  4. Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

    Posts: 5,663
    Somewhere on the Coast
    Ratings: +544 / 0
    Here's da report.
    Was running a bit late, as usual, since I had to crank out one good Reversed Spider (and I'm a bit slow) in "Polar Shrimp" dress.
    However, I was not "too late," due to the mellow tide exchange and absolute glassy conditions. The drizzle never materialized, but you can't always have everything the way you like it.
    I saw lots of individual bait fish and smolts jumping in the estuary as I paddled up under the bridge...looked like rise rings on a trout lake during a hatch. I think the bumps I was getting on my 2" streamer might have been smolts. I was paddling fast so that I could get back in about 5 miles before the tide dropped too much to fish a certain pool near the head of tidewater that I had in mind.
    I think that I was paddling too fast to be trolling for trout...maybe good coho speed, but too slow for tuna. None of those other fish up there anyway. Coho maybe later, tuna never.
    Barely made it over the last eelgrass flat "short-cut" so I didn't have to go around in the channel, and was able to reel in my estuary baitfish streamer and duck under a spanner log that the recent high tides had somehow moved into a "less-than-ideal" position. At least that will keep any power boats out of there!

    I arrived at my target destination as the tide was beginning to really run out, anchored in my favorite spot for swinging and stripping my Reversed Spider over the submerged logs, and grabbed my med-action 8' 4wt rigged up with a type 2 sinktip and my freshly concocted fraud.

    Stripped out the right amount of line for a first, shorter cast and made a good one, swinging it just my side of the logs. Felt a good grab, but missed it! Dang.
    Next cast, with a couple more feet of line out, I swung and stripped a couple times, let my Reversed Spider flutter a bit, and had a hard grab and hooked up.
    A bright and chunky cutthroat about 13" or so rocketed skyward one, two, & three times before I had it on the reel, then bulldogged down toward the logs, but my 4X held and I got it back out in the clear, where it tried to take the battle under my yak. The cutt seemed like it was tiring a bit, so I reached for my net, whereupon it streaked back out into the current and leapt high two more times, throwing my fly with a headshake on the last leap.

    That was the pinnacle of my journey, and I fished the upper sections too long again. I had a couple of more grabs, but missed 'em. One 6" or 7"er kept slashing at the fly as I waked it back toward me on the surface, but didn't hook up. Was fun to watch the little guy going at it, though.

    Light winds and glassy surface conditons made the paddle back out easy, in spite of the turning tide. Wind usually trumps current, and the wind was just a light breeze, barely riffling the surface.

    I had reeled in my Reversed Spider and was trolling my 2" baitfish streamer (9' 4 wt rod with clear intermediate line) on the way back out, but kept getting fouled by the eel grass, and did not experience the usual random grabs that I was accustomed to missing.
    Conditions were still almost glassy when I paddled under the bridge, but the light breeze allowed me to continue trolling out into the harbor, just off the edge of the eel grass flats bordering some oyster beds.
    Looked fishy, as I was paddling right along the rip line of the incoming tide, and I was enjoying the balminess of it all, when suddenly I noticed that my rod was dancing! I grabbed it and felt solid resistance, and turned to look back just in time to witness a chrome searun cutt about 12" to 14" leap high and throw my fly.

    I trolled some more in the same direction, then crossed over the river channel and trolled just outside the eel grass back to my launch, and didn't get any more hits.

    That's only three cutthroat I actually saw all day:( , but I had a great time paddling.:cool:
  5. doublebluff Go Beavs

    Posts: 112
    Corvallis, OR
    Ratings: +29 / 0
    A great day. Thanks for posting.