I got to the little bait shop in San Leandro and I asked about the stripers.
“Not happening” he said.
Conditions hadn’t been kind, it turns out. Low tides with high winds had muddied up the bay and kept the fish from finding the little spots one can find them on foot.
We looked over Google Maps anyway and he pointed out where I needed to go. I figured I’d go, just so I had the right place when and if the conditions ever were right. I had also screwed up the tides. I should have been there on the outgoing tide, not the incoming. The baitfish get pushed down to the fish… these fish aren’t climbing up on a flat to feed. So, lessons learned in quick succession.
I went out regardless. I had the new Redington Vapen and I wanted to see how it felt (it felt kind of awesome, btw). I found the water and quickly could see potential in the place. There was structure, current and bait, there just weren’t any stripers. There were a LOT of fish around, but they were elasmobranchs of the flattened variety.
I didn’t see a striper and given the amount of baitfish I could see and the number of rays I saw, I think they weren’t there. It was a sweet, sweet little spot and I’ll go back. I didn’t mind it basically being a homeless encampment. No one bothered me and one guy even offered to bring me a chair while I was wading… although I’m still not sure why.
This was urban fishing. There were freeways and sirens and homeless people and what looked like a pretty good environment. It would have been good to get a grab, but this isn’t like throwing a line out in the Keys. You are either going to catch stripers or you are going to catch nothing. I caught nothing, but it was worth it to get out and see some new water.
Tags: SF Bay