The Knitting Nurse

Rambles and Travels

Beginners Luck and Great Teachers – Catching Sturgeon in the San Pablo Bay


I have a Bucket List.  Lately the listed items have been related to where I am located.

Here, in No. Cal. it’s included:

  • Braving wine tasting and not feeling like a total dweeb. Ok I felt a little dorky.
  • Berkeley
  • Calistoga Hot Springs
  • Touring the San Francisco Presidio
  • Coit tower
  • CA Academy of Sciences museum in GG Park
  • Riding my bike on the PCH
  • Point Bonita Lighthouse Tour
  • Hiking Tomales Point
  • Oysters and beer at Nicks Cove
  • Smiley’s Saloon in Bolinas
  • Duxbury Reef
  • Hanging out with Amy J. bunches
  • Hiking Mt. Tam
  • A Verb…in Oakland
  • Limantour Beach
  • Biking Salt Point

There’s more. I’m running out of time. So much more to do!  But the biggie on the list occurred last week  on Wednesday and I’m still wearing a HUGE grin from the day’s events.


Mind you, I used to fish with my pop as a little girl but once I left grade school years I wanted nothing to do with parental-interaction. (Sorry mom and dad, I was a pain in the ass back then.  You were right.  I regret quitting piano lessons.)

Thinking I’d have to resort to a charter service to accomplish the fishing I was hesitant.  Thankfully, my buddy Robert from Denver chimed in and said something like, “I should get you in touch with my dad and brother.  They’d love to take you fishing!”

Man did I get lucky.

Joe studied the tide charts and picked a great day. He and his buddy Bob taught me how to bait my hooks, cast and land fish. In fact, they generously gave up the ones they hooked for me to reel in.  I hooked a couple. Was fun to learn what that felt like when the fish grabbed on.  Lost my bait a few times as well.

Rode out in the AM. It was cool but not cold. The water was much more choppy than usual.  Joe was worried about the fishing but we did really well.  Afraid I’d yak (I’ve gotten seasick) I didn’t.  A blessing.

Passed this Tug pushing a dredging barge. Was really eery looking int he AM clouds.  Did you know most of the Bay is 5-8′ in depth? That floored me.


Joe with a beauty of a bass. I think this was the one I ate?  Tasty!  So cool to eat something that came out of the water hours before.

The HUGE 62″ er was a bear to land. Took awhile and lots of work. Joe held onto my jacket to keep me on the boat.  Much appreciated!

Bob hoisting the behemoth.  They estimated it weighed 80#.  The day after this, Joe caught a 74″ sturgeon!

One of the 5 total sturgeon caught.   It’s skin was raspy and there were sharp spines along it’s body.  All we released.  They can get to 8′ out here.

This wee bullhead latched on while I was ignoring my rod and eating my PBJ.  Said Bob, “Hey Heather, you’re not going to believe this!”  I just finished with one sturgeon.  Apparently, it’s unusual to catch so many fish in one outing.  Little bugger ate all three shrimp on the hooks.

Throwing one back:

Mt. Tam on  the way back:

I had the most spectacular day I can’t rave about it enough.  Hoping to go out again next week with Joe.  When I make it to Alaska I’ll be sure to go fishing a bunch.  This day was unusual.  It may not be as much fun if none/few are caught.  Regardless, I could get into this.

5 thoughts on “Beginners Luck and Great Teachers – Catching Sturgeon in the San Pablo Bay

  1. “Regardless, I could get into this.”

    Dangerous dangerous words! That is an amazing trip! White sturgeon are some of the biggest fish to swim. The sturgeon as a whole are unique (and highly addictive). No other group of fish has “scutes” like they do. The lake sturgeon in Minnesota don’t get quite as big, but 60″ fish are caught from the Croix every year. We will have to try our luck out there when you come back.

  2. nice fish, beats the sunnies and bass we caught at breezy point pelican lake love papa

    • Thanks, pops! Might go next Friday. I’d go back for more sunnies and bass, with you, any day! Come to AK and we’ll go fishing up there.

  3. What a stellar story and a cute little bullhead. In the days before digital cameras I’m not sure I would’ve believed 62″, but since you have the photos to prove your big fish story . . . what a whopper!

  4. Pingback: Getting Skunked – The Boat-Ride of a Lifetime – Wrapping Up CA and Starting a New Alaskan Chapter (Part 2 of ?) « (Nomadic) Knitting Nurse

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