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  1. #10
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Nice. I been wanting to make a trip like that but haven't been able to find the time.


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  2. #9
    Senior Member dsa2780's Avatar
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    Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    It wasn't too bad out there. It was flat most of the morning. Me and Andres went and had a pretty slow day. Took us awhile to get used to this style of rock fishing, being used to the structure around Bodega, drifting through lots of sand and only losing three weights all day was foreign. These reefs are WAY smaller than we imagined.

    Got one barely legal keeper ling, some gopher rockfish and I had two strikes in sandy areas close to the beach that were probably halibut. Sardines cut clean in half after the rod doubled over into the water. I should have had a trap rig as opposed to a single. Lesson learned.

    Drifting 8oz of weight rolling smaller sized sardines got the bites. Squid and a blade runner jig got us some dink rockfish.

    I'd go back with the intent of halibut as opposed to rockfish. Thanks for the advice guys!











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    Last edited by dsa2780; 05-18-2017 at 08:16 PM.

  3. #8
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    I fish the skiffs at Capitola quite a bit and, knock on wood, usually do well.
    Talk to Ed or Myron there and they can point you in the right direction. They will give you a map with GPS locations on it for the typical areas.
    My buddy and I fish Surfers Reef and Boomers Reef and usually do OK. Bring sabikis. Live bait works much better there for halibut and lingcod. We usually jig up macks and smelt and once in awhile sardines. Put them on a trap rig at one of the reefs and you'll likely hook up. SC3 is a pretty good spot, too.
    Regarding the weather, always look at the forecast. That forecast listed looks like it might be for the channel which would be quite a bit rougher than right off Capitola. We've been out there where it's been flat calm when it listed a small craft advisory for Monterey Bay. They won't let you out if it looks bad (swell and/or wind). Like I said, always look at the forecast.
    Free parking, too, if you park on the street above the RR tracks.
    Good luck.
    Tim

  4. #7
    Senior Member BigUnInDaBoat's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Quote Originally Posted by dsa2780 View Post
    Awesome. Thanks for the info. Was planning on going to an Asian seafood market and getting some fresh squid to drift at greylight. I know nothing of how to catch it in the ocean. What lb line you using for leader material on your baits? I want to avoid drowning them


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    We used to get live anchovies at the harbor in SC, in a big ice chest, with aeration we could keep some alive, they were big 6-7" we used 20-25lb test. Not sure if they still have them there. Fresh dead squid is a very good choice too.

  5. #6
    Senior Member dsa2780's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Quote Originally Posted by QueenAnnesRevenge View Post
    Might want to keep an eye on swell forecast
    This week looks not great

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    Was looking at that. Well.....guess I'm going shark fishing!


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  6. #5
    Senior Member QueenAnnesRevenge's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Might want to keep an eye on swell forecast
    This week looks not great

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  7. #4
    Senior Member dsa2780's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Quote Originally Posted by BigUnInDaBoat View Post
    I used to do this a bunch of times a year, usually out of santa cruz unless the weather was bad. The area from 1/8th of a mile off the wharf south to the mouth of the harbor has produced some great halibut for me. Some times you can get shiners and anchovies and small kingfish right off the pier before you start. I've successfully caught topsmelt out in the open water and used them for bait and caught halibut.

    If you wanted rockfish you could run to the MLPA boundry and drift south, it's at natural bridges, but it's only doable with flat weather. The regular stuff works well, lings love a whole dead squid on a three way out there, and you have a chance of getting a 'but or a wsb doing the same.

    Capitola has not been good to me, I've seen HUGE wsb crusing down there but they wont bite anything. I hooked a WSB in the kelp bed of soquel point, but lost it. I heard it can be good there when the butts are biting but I'd rather fish the above mentioned area.
    Awesome. Thanks for the info. Was planning on going to an Asian seafood market and getting some fresh squid to drift at greylight. I know nothing of how to catch it in the ocean. What lb line you using for leader material on your baits? I want to avoid drowning them


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  8. #3
    Senior Member BigUnInDaBoat's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    I used to do this a bunch of times a year, usually out of santa cruz unless the weather was bad. The area from 1/8th of a mile off the wharf south to the mouth of the harbor has produced some great halibut for me. Some times you can get shiners and anchovies and small kingfish right off the pier before you start. I've successfully caught topsmelt out in the open water and used them for bait and caught halibut.

    If you wanted rockfish you could run to the MLPA boundry and drift south, it's at natural bridges, but it's only doable with flat weather. The regular stuff works well, lings love a whole dead squid on a three way out there, and you have a chance of getting a 'but or a wsb doing the same.

    Capitola has not been good to me, I've seen HUGE wsb crusing down there but they wont bite anything. I hooked a WSB in the kelp bed of soquel point, but lost it. I heard it can be good there when the butts are biting but I'd rather fish the above mentioned area.

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  10. #2
    Senior Member nayr's Avatar
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    Re: Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Ive only been down there once, but it was easy to make bait. I notice the folks that do well down there consistently bring a fishfinder and clamp on a transducer.

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  12. #1
    Senior Member dsa2780's Avatar
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    Capitola/Santa Cruz skiff rental advice

    Looking to do something a bit different and hit up the skiff rental out of Capitola with some friends this week. Never used the skiff rentals before but was just more or less looking for any local advice on ways to target halibut or white seabass if possible. I've read some old threads that say to drift fresh caught squid if available. Honestly not too worried if wsb don't work out because they seem more rare than anything out there, rockfish and lings will be the backup.


    Are sardines, mackerel or kingfish readily available to catch on sabikis? Or is there any option to buy bait right out of the rental?

    I'm pretty aware that the winds pick up after 11AM so fish hard in he early AM before getting blown off the water. Anyways, any advice is super appreciated!


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