I gave up on the salmon – at least for now. So after launching at Brannan State Park Tuesday morning, I trolled for stripers down river from Three Mile Slough. I managed one 22″ shaker, but that was it. At the last power line across the river below Decker Island, I reeled in and motored down to Suisun Bay for the night. I managed to reel in a shaker sturgeon of about 30 inches who fell for lamprey. He wasn’t much of a fighter, but it sure beat a skunk.
I spent the night there over my sturgeon hole, and slept pretty well as occasional rain fell. My all night fishing is long over, I need my geriatric sleep! I fished a couple more hours the next morning, but couldn’t interest any takers. I tried a while for sturgeon at Light 25 when I got back upriver, but still no takers. Even so, it was a very pleasant trip.
Life is good while awaiting that little sturgeon nibble.
November 15, 2006
Autumn doesn’t get any better than our recent calm, clear, mild days. I just had to head out for some sturgeon fishing!
I cruised the hour or so down river from Brannan Island State Park to my favorite honey hole on Suisun Bay. When I arrived, an outgoing tide was just getting well underway. I tossed out a couple of chunks of lamprey, popped the top on a wobbly-pop — and waited.
My honey hole is near Garnet Point, between Roe and Ryer Islands. It is very remote, I seldom see another boat within a couple of miles. I love it, it’s my favorite spot on the Delta.
This visit, under perfect conditions, would not last long. In about an hour and a half, the typical sturgeon bite clicked a bit of line from my reel. I set the hook hard and I knew I had a sturgeon on!
Suisun Bay Sturgeon!
I thought the little guy was bigger than he was. I fought him for only about ten minutes before he was belly-up at the boat. I wondered if he was even legal, so I grabbed my little green garden tape that is 72″ long and has a mark at 46″ – the legal slot limit for sturgeon. He seemed to be a bit longer than 46″, so I took him. He measured exactly 46″ on the sole of the cockpit, and weighed in at 19 pounds.
My limit was in the boat! Lamprey eel apparently is not attractive to other fish, which is why it’s my only choice for sturgeon fishing. I would have fished for stripers if I’d have had any striper bait, but I didn’t. So I stowed the fishing gear, cleaned up the cockpit and headed back upriver to Brannan Island and home.
Three of the last four sturgeon I have taken measured the minimum 46″; two last November and this one. The fourth sturgeon, taken in March, was at the other extreme of the sturgeon slot limit: A monster 72 incher that weighed over a hundred pounds. It seems that I am due for a fish somewhere in the middle of the slot!
This was my first sturgeon of the fall season, and my Delta fishing will soon be over ’til February or March. I may bag another sturgeon yet this year; it will depend on the weather and luck.
Over the years I have posted many exciting fishing and boating stories here, but now in my seventies, it was time to sell the boat and find less demanding pastimes. All the fishing stories are still here! I will now post my travels aboard the motorhome and other activities. I hope y'all will still enjoy the fishing and boating adventures and perhaps peek in on my post-boating activities on occasion. Thanks for dropping in and I hope you enjoy your visit.