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Old 12-02-2020, 04:51 PM   #1
Salty
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Thanksgiving NorCal Camping/Fishing Trip

Hey Everyone!

Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving weekend! I took the opportunity(and some vacation days) to drive 600+ miles North to spend some time in the wilderness away from all the craziness. My buddy and I loaded up our yaks onto his truck and headed out before sunrise on Wednesday. Traveled up to the beach campsite about 1.5 hours north of Fort Bragg and set up camp on the bluff overlooking the beach. Weather was awesome, though near freezing in the mornings and howling offshore winds(thank God for coffee). Only downside was a massive swell was pounding the entire coast which kept us off the water most of the trip. Wasn't a big deal since I was just stoked to be camping somewhere with no cell service available for at least an hour drive in any direction. Still managed to make a Thanksgiving dinner with turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and Hawaiian sweet rolls with butter all cooked on the camping stove on the tailgate while listening to the waves crash on the cliffs down below. My kind of Thanksgiving!
...BUT, I was still itching to fish, so we loaded up the truck on the second to last day and drove a few hours South to a new campsite with a MUCH calmer beach. It wasn't nearly as remote, but we could set up the tents on the sand and the beach launch was like a lake. Got in about an hour's worth of fishing that evening before sunset, then got up early the next day and fished for a few hours before the brutal 13-hour drive home.
Overall, the fishing was awesome. I never really target rockfish specifically, so it was fun to explore a new area and try different techniques. Water temp was around 48-49. No wind at all. Hardly any swell on the South-facing cove. Got my personal best Lingcod(about 25-ish"), lots of Blue Rockfish, about 4 or 5 decent Copper Rockfish(I think?), and a handful of what I think were small Olive Rockfish. Not a bad count considering I was only on the water about 3.5 hours total. All fish were caught in under 100' of water and were resuscitated and released. Made sure there were no floaters and they could swim down on their own power. Definitely looking forward to getting back up there and spending more time on the water!

Here are some pics. I'll post the fishing ones first, because that's probably what most of you are more interested in....
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Old 12-02-2020, 04:53 PM   #2
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Some more pics:
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Old 12-02-2020, 04:55 PM   #3
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And a couple more:
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Old 12-03-2020, 02:56 AM   #4
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Fort Bragg was our go to place for Abalone when I was at school up Nth. I wonder if it's been wiped out. Nice photos! A picture is worth a thousand words, Congrats on your first Ling.

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Old 12-03-2020, 08:08 AM   #5
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Damn that's a rad trip. Must've been nice to get away from the ratrace of elections and lockdowns. Dude, next time go 600 miles south, you'll be into a whole different kind of paradise. Cheers!
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Old 12-03-2020, 08:13 AM   #6
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WOW

Epic post. Thanks for sharing your experience. Looks like Paradise.

BTW How do you like the Hobie outback?
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Old 12-03-2020, 11:28 AM   #7
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Now that's livin

Thanks for sharing
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Old 12-03-2020, 12:47 PM   #8
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I've said it before, but your photography is just wonderful. These could be in an outdoor mag.
You really put care into your shots and it shows.
I always love when someone can document a trip and make me feel the pull of the experience with a few compelling shots... Especially those tent and truck photos.


Thanks for sharing!
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Old 12-03-2020, 01:01 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by JohnMckroidJr View Post
Fort Bragg was our go to place for Abalone when I was at school up Nth. I wonder if it's been wiped out. Nice photos! A picture is worth a thousand words, Congrats on your first Ling.
I can see why! Saw lots of Abalone shell fragments on the beach there, so if that's any indication of how the population is doing, I'm guessing that's a good sign at least!

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Damn that's a rad trip. Must've been nice to get away from the ratrace of elections and lockdowns. Dude, next time go 600 miles south, you'll be into a whole different kind of paradise. Cheers!
Completely agree! At one point I told my buddy "You know what... I haven't even thought about what's been going on in the political world for the last 4 days. This is great!" And Baja has definitely been on my radar. Used to do surf trips down there since before I can remember. Haven't been back in years though. My dad, brother and some friends had their car stolen there while surfing the cliffs around K56 and left them stranded with nothing but their surfboards and wetsuits. Kinda put a bad taste in everyone's mouth in regards to Baja... Doesn't mean I'll never go back, just extra-cautious about how we do it and where we go.

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Epic post. Thanks for sharing your experience. Looks like Paradise.

BTW How do you like the Hobie outback?
Thanks! It was a great trip and I'm always happy to share some of the stoke. Outback was amazing though! No complaints at all really. It's a great boat.

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Now that's livin

Thanks for sharing
Any time! Wish I could just stay out there all the time, but this annoying thing called "reality" keeps showing up and making me go back to work... lol
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Old 12-03-2020, 01:08 PM   #10
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I've said it before, but your photography is just wonderful. These could be in an outdoor mag.
You really put care into your shots and it shows.
I always love when someone can document a trip and make me feel the pull of the experience with a few compelling shots... Especially those tent and truck photos.


Thanks for sharing!
Thanks man! Appreciate that coming from you. I can tell you put a ton of care into your videos/films and it's awesome that you can recognize that eye in others. These were all just from my phone, but I did take my facny DSLR our there as well to do some more "real" photography. Not so much kayak-oriented, but just nature in general. I'd be happy to share some of those once I do some touchups and editing. Got some video too, but the second gopro battery crapped out on me after the second launch so I didn't get the majority of actual fishing/catching on video... but, I think I might have enough to slap together a little something at some point!
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Old 12-03-2020, 09:53 PM   #11
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Looks like a great trip and some great memories. Love the photos, makes one, want to be there at least before the really cold weather. Thanks for sharing, Salty.
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Old 12-07-2020, 05:43 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Salty View Post
Thanks man! Appreciate that coming from you. I can tell you put a ton of care into your videos/films and it's awesome that you can recognize that eye in others. These were all just from my phone, but I did take my facny DSLR our there as well to do some more "real" photography. Not so much kayak-oriented, but just nature in general. I'd be happy to share some of those once I do some touchups and editing. Got some video too, but the second gopro battery crapped out on me after the second launch so I didn't get the majority of actual fishing/catching on video... but, I think I might have enough to slap together a little something at some point!
I'd say that's impressive. Kind of amazing what you can pull off with an iphone these days.

If I'm being honest, I hate filming with a gopro. I get so used to having the control and the tactile experience with a DSLR or even my TG-5 and it just frustrates me. Remembering to turn it on while I have tunnel vision diving or fishing, *and* battery issues, and it just starts to feel like it's *always* something. I'm actually endlessly impressed by anyone who can pull off good action/adventure footage with a gopro without using auxillary batteries plugged in.

I would love to see both the DSLR and the video footage
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Old 12-10-2020, 09:36 PM   #13
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That looks so cool!
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Old 12-12-2020, 04:17 PM   #14
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I'd say that's impressive. Kind of amazing what you can pull off with an iphone these days.

If I'm being honest, I hate filming with a gopro. I get so used to having the control and the tactile experience with a DSLR or even my TG-5 and it just frustrates me. Remembering to turn it on while I have tunnel vision diving or fishing, *and* battery issues, and it just starts to feel like it's *always* something. I'm actually endlessly impressed by anyone who can pull off good action/adventure footage with a gopro without using auxillary batteries plugged in.

I would love to see both the DSLR and the video footage
I know what you mean. If I were to really go out with the intention of filming something with decent production value, I wouldn't use a gopro either. But I really just use it to capture any craziness that happens out there and the occasional decent catch to make basic videos to share with people like my dad so he can show it off to his fishing buddies(and of course anyone else that likes watching fishing stuff).

And I haven't had much of a chance to really go through my DSLR phots, but when I do I'll post some here for you!

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That looks so cool!
Thanks! The photos really don't do it justice....
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Old 12-17-2020, 11:58 AM   #15
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Wow if only I saw this earlier. I live in north most California up in crescent city. That spot is only 20-30 minutes from me. I own a restaurant here next time shoot me a message!
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Old 12-17-2020, 01:41 PM   #16
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Oh damn, if I had known I would have loved to stop by and support your restaurant! I've been through Crescent City only once on a camping roadtrip from here in OC to Brookings, OR. Didn't have a surfboard with me at the time, but I was surprised how fun the surf looked! It's a really cool area.
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Old 12-18-2020, 02:41 PM   #17
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Oh damn, if I had known I would have loved to stop by and support your restaurant! I've been through Crescent City only once on a camping roadtrip from here in OC to Brookings, OR. Didn't have a surfboard with me at the time, but I was surprised how fun the surf looked! It's a really cool area.
Itís a beautiful area. I sold my kayak years ago but every time I was by pebble beach drive I go crazy because itís like kayak heaven
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Old 12-20-2020, 12:17 AM   #18
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Itís a beautiful area. I sold my kayak years ago but every time I was by pebble beach drive I go crazy because itís like kayak heaven
That whole area looks like kayak heaven! We'll definitely be back again at some point and I'd love to fish that area and stop by your restaurant!
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