Salt Point

#1
Hello all, back for some more advice. I am curious what the rockfish typically bite in the spring? I will be headed to Salt Point with the wife May 10th and just hunting the coast around there. Plan on fishing right off the rocks at salt point, ocean cove, timber cove, and fort ross. I also plan on just bringing every different type of bait I can buy locally (sacramento) but wanted to know what you guys are or typically do have success with time of year. Any replies are appreciated, thanks.
 

nacho

New member
#2
I remember fishing around there with PFC member Sea++ and we used regular squid as bait. I do not recall exactly what we got, maybe some greenlings and grass/brown rockfish.
The place is very scenic. Enjoy!
 
#3
Hello all, back for some more advice. I am curious what the rockfish typically bite in the spring? I will be headed to Salt Point with the wife May 10th and just hunting the coast around there. Plan on fishing right off the rocks at salt point, ocean cove, timber cove, and fort ross. I also plan on just bringing every different type of bait I can buy locally (sacramento) but wanted to know what you guys are or typically do have success with time of year. Any replies are appreciated, thanks.

Salt Point has some gorgeous rock formations and a ton of nooks and crannies to wet a line. I catch everything there on squid and shrimp but if the swells are down plenty of people kill it with swimbaits in the 4-6” range. Lings, big cabs, striped surfperch, kelp greenlings, and grassies are what you’ll likely run into. Make sure your braid is heavy enough to pull yourself out of snags and heavy vegetation.

I would avoid Timber Cove unless you feel very sure-footed and are willing to scramble down rocks closer to the water. Otherwise most of those cliffs are just too damn high up to fish from and release fish in a safe manner if you don’t/can’t keep your catch.

Ocean Cove is another fantastic spot and offers plenty of tree cover if you want to take a lunch break away from the sun & wind.

Haven’t fished Fort Ross yet but it’s a helluva sight just touring around the old fort. Looking forward to hearing how you do there!

There are a few other coves and turnouts between Timber and Ocean Cove that are worth checking out. Any spot that is calm enough as a launching spot for yaks is plenty fine to fish as long as it’s not a protected zone like Gerstle Cove SMR.

Absolutely beautiful coastline and early May ought to start really calming down. Good luck!
 

Robf

New member
#4
My experience has been that if they are biting, then just about any bait works. But I almost exclusively use squid unless I happen to have recently caught bait fish. It just works. Never had success using artificial baits in rocky areas from the shore, but maybe it's just the areas I fish. Too much kelp makes artificials impossible.
 
#5
To give you an idea of some of the structure, the first video here is filmed around spots like Timber Cove and (mostly) Ocean Cove. They had success on both bait and artificials.


and this second one is someone fishing swimbaits at Salt Point.



RobF is right though that you really will need to be picky about where you cast your swimbait because kelp is going to be everywhere and low tide is going to be mid-morning when you said you’ll be there, so you can expect to encounter more of it sitting on top of the water. Just explore around though and you’ll find channels and points that you’ll be able to successfully fish a swimbait or dropshot even. You may want to have some heavier weights (5 or 6oz torpedos) to punch through the vegetation if you’re going to try and fish directly in it.
 
#6
Thanks for the responses guys!! I will keep all of this in mind. We are staying at Gerstle Cove CG so we'll be in the middle of plenty of spots. Def plan on going with some swimbaits, still havent landed anything with one yet. I will take plenty of shrimp and squid per the recommendations. I will be back with an update after the trip.
 
#7
Caught 12 rockfish! 2 China’s and 5 blues were what we ended up taking. Made a great dinner for my wife for mother’s day. She’s such a trooper. We planned this trip before realizing it was Mother’s Day and she had the luck. Caught 9 of the 12. Think she’s hooked now!!!

Edit: great conditions Saturday almost all day. Sunday got windy and choppy early. Some bites but nothing worth keeping. All rockfish caught; no signs of Lings, think I saw a cabbie carcass in the gut bin at Ocean Cove but looked like mostly smaller rockfish from the kayakers even.
 
#8
Caught 12 rockfish! 2 China’s and 5 blues were what we ended up taking. Made a great dinner for my wife for mother’s day. She’s such a trooper. We planned this trip before realizing it was Mother’s Day and she had the luck. Caught 9 of the 12. Think she’s hooked now!!!
That's awesome! What a haul for the both of you! Did you end up doing most of your damage in Salt Point SP or did you explore some of the other coves nearby?
 
#10
All damage done inside the Park. We tried Ocean Cove but conditions were just too bad on sunday. Great trip overall, cant wait to get back out!
Isn't SPSP great? First time I just parked at visitor parking lot, hiked all the way along the bluffs to Stump Beach Cove, and then fished all the way back to the parking lot. Some really amazing rock structures let alone great little channels to fish. Really love that area. Glad you had such a good time.