North to Neah report

ibn

Moderator
#1
Had an itch that only a black rockfish could scratch so the only thing I could do this weekend as go to Neah Bay. The rockfish posse consisted of me, Anil and Ed D. We crashed out in the cheapest motel we could find then launched early Sunday morning. Everything was going splendid until we got around the breakwater.

My main outboard is a 90hp merc, only 2 years old. It sputters and dies. "No problem!" I'm thinking, it's happened before, go to start it back up and nada. We spent about 40 minutes horsing with it while puttering around with my 8hp backup. After much fiddling (I know nothing about motors) I was finally able to get it running by turning the key really fast. I suspect the culprit was a flooded engine or a gummy carb. The day was saved and off we went.

As for the fishing, it started out pretty slow, a fish or two at each spot we usually check. Finally after 3 or so hours of moving around we got into a big school underneath a nice kelp patty. Then it was bananas for about 2 hours.

I usually fish a 7wt crosscurrent GLX, as a backup I brought a 6wt Xi2, I also had a backup reel that I brought, it happened to be spooled up with my 8wt steelhead floating line. I ended up putting the xi2 together and rigging up a popper on my 8wt line. The end result was catching a handfull of rockfish each on poppers and raising countless others. Popper fishing in itself is fun, popper fishing for blackrockfish is crack. They dont mess around, they usually come tearing up from the bottom and explode all the way out of the water. I managed to get some video of one of the takes, I converted it into an animated .gif - it's too big to add as an attachment, you can load it by hitting the link below.

Dialup users: it's 10 megs so you might wanna skip it

http://fishing.surrealistic.net/waff/rockfish_poppin.gif

I had intended to take more photos and try to do some more underwater video shots, but damm is it hard to stop fishing when the fishing is good! In the end I dont know how many fish we caught or lost, one of those days where you loose track after that first one. Now I'm stuck at work trying to figgure out when the next time I can get out there will be.
 

Attachments

#3
That's awesome. I have only caught them on gear, but they are a blast when you get into a good school. Nice video of the one on the popper! What a take!

Dang it, I need a boat :beathead:
 
#5
Do you guys ever keep any of them to eat? What is the minimum qty and size to keep on that cod? What is the advantage to a "tube shock/awe" compared to a non-tube shock and awe? How deep was it where you were catching the rock fish and cod? Sorry for all the questions...

Thanks man and great pics!

:thumb:
 

Steve Rohrbach

Puget Sound Fly Fisher
#7
ibn, thanks for the great photos and video. Your report made me feel better after battling the wind on the sound yesterday with nothing to show. I am ready to start tying some Shock & Awes. Next time, try to get Anil to smile after catching a fish. I know he can do it. Steve
 

ibn

Moderator
#9
Flyfishsteel said:
Do you guys ever keep any of them to eat? What is the minimum qty and size to keep on that cod? What is the advantage to a "tube shock/awe" compared to a non-tube shock and awe? How deep was it where you were catching the rock fish and cod? Why do you go with such heavy weight rods? Sorry for all the questions...

Thanks man and great pics!

:thumb:
I'm morally opposed to keeping lingcod, so I don't keep them. We'll keep a couple rockfish, they're tasty, I always feel guilty taking from my favorite fishery so I usually only take 1 or 2 if that. The limit is 10 rockfish per angler.

We usually use 7/8wt's. I got my ass handed to me yesterday by something big, I wish I had a 10 or 12wt. I broke off a fish with 20lb floro because it just wouldn't stop taking line. Assume it was a big ling, but who knows. Those rockfish are perfect on a 7 or 8, even with a stiff 6 I felt undergunned. Rockfish usually give up after 15 seconds of fighting, but lookout in that first run, they're strong. We also use 250 through 350 grain striper lines which require those weight rods to chuck.

There isn't a non-tube shock and awe that I'm aware of, part of what makes the fly unique requires that you tie it on a tube.

We fish around structure and kelp beds, usually 20-50 feet deep. But like I said, you can catch rockfish on top to, the will be suspended throughout the collum. The lingcod was a bi-catch, we weren't targeting those, they just end up in the same habitat.
 

Chris Bellows

Your Preferred WFF Poster
#14
nice pics, it will be the first spring in a long time with no bottomfishing for me... but i have one question.

just curious.... morally opposed to keeping lingcod????

also, i don't know how you work your surface flies, but try some poppers that make some real noise.... the bigger, the better.... i had someone use large roosterfish poppers(an inch to 1.5 inch in diameter) completely change the way i fished poppers.... try to make as much noise as possible... and then let it sit for at least 4-5 seconds.... works especially well over the pinnacle we all gang up on during slack tide during salmon season.

chris
 

ibn

Moderator
#15
flyfishneahbay said:
just curious.... morally opposed to keeping lingcod????

chris
I know, I know! It's weird, I just think they're a cool fish, they don't age fast, and we usually only catch a couple each time we go out there, personal preference is all.

Bummer about your boat and biz, if there is one thing neah bay does need, it's intellegent guides, I know I'll miss seeing you buzzing around in that kickass boat. If you ever want to go out there to fish let me know, I've always got people who want to go with me, but I'd be willing to make a slot for ya sometime.
 

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