28" San Quintin halibut.
Yesterday I decided to paddle across the San Quintin Bay mouth to a trench in the channel that had produced a decent 28" halibut for me the day before. It is a tricky little spot, with dumping tides creating a river-like flow, winds that can get stiff, and whales that like to get a snack in the turbulent water.
The wind came up early and out of the east, seemingly with a vengeance. This meant I had to paddle directly into it to get back to the launch point. Bad planning on my part, and a warning to all you paddlers venturing out: Check the weather first! I had checked it a few days prior and remembered that Saturday morning was going to be calm, but giving into a windy afternoon. The direction made the difference, and though I paddle a boat that does well in the wind, it was a tough return.
You know it's windy when you are being pelted in the face by sand and you're still 100 yards offshore. Wind can make it hard to see the whales, too. It's unnerving to hear them blow close, but not see them. Be safe.
Maybe an accident that happened in Cabo last week was on my mind as well. Unfortunately several people were injured and one woman lost her life when a breaching humpback whale landed on their boat as they returned from a snorkeling trip. This was not the case of an operator getting close to get a view; it was just an unfortunate accident. That being said, always give the whales a wide berth, they generally know you are there and won't try to harm you. But when they are feeling playful, it can get dangerous when too close.
Here's the landing totals from yesterday:
Chubasco 2 Sportfishing 34 anglers aboard 1 boat caught 7 bocaccio, 2 sculpin, 92 rockfish, 2 calico bass and 1 lingcod.
Fisherman's Landing 44 anglers aboard 2 boats landed 7 whitefish, 26 sculpin, 2 sand bass, 134 rockfish, 2 sheephead and 1 calico bass.
H&M Landing 161 anglers aboard 4 boats boated 10 spider crab, 3 california spiny lobster, 1 bonito, 162 rockfish, 28 yellowtail, 1 cabezon, 43 mackerel, 32 halfmoon, 6 sheephead, 5 sculpin, 1 sand bass and 1 lingcod, with 39 lobster released.
Helgren's Oceanside Sportfishing 48 anglers aboard 2 boats caught 1 sheephead, 47 sculpin, 3 sand bass, 2 rockfish, 1 cabezon, 16 treefish and 47 yellowtai.l
Point Loma Sportfishing 93 anglers aboard 3 boats caught 1 sheephead, 54 sculpin, 42 rubberlip seaperch, 178 rockfish, 15 yellowtail and 1 cabezon .
Seaforth Sportfishing 204 anglers aboard 6 boats caught 4 sculpin, 506 rockfish, 1 lingcod, 3 sheephead, 13 whitefish, 50 yellowtail, 2 barracuda, 1 halibut and 2 bonito.