Posted by Richard H. on July 07, 2003 at 16:58:38:
Having lived in Moss Beach for 10 years, I've dabbled off an on with saltwater fly fishing, especially for perch. But as y'all know, trying to teach yourself the finer points of a fishery is an excercise in futility. Fortuanately, I had been trading e-mails over the past year with Glenn Yoshimoto, largely as a result of his great web site on perch fishing; www.zenflyfishing.com Glenn recently told me that if I was willing to come down to the Santa Cruz area beaches on a weekday, he was willing to "take me under his wing". He didn't have to ask twice, and today was the day.
We got on the water at 5:30, and I knew that things were off to a great start when I landed a perch on my first cast. 30 minutes later, when things got a bit lighter and we could see the water, we got into a hole where about every 4th cast resulted in a fish. By 7:30 my count was up to 25; an amazing number when you consider that I had never caught more than 5 in one day! We fished on; things got hot, things got cold. 30, then 40, then 50. Finally, casting the LC-13 for 7 hours started to take its toll; flies whacked the back of my head with increasing frequency and I started dropping takes more than I landed fish. But Glenn (and his good friend Jim T) wanted to fish on. A little after after 1 pm, with fish number 63 in hand, I decided to stop. WIth the exception of 2-3, all were caught on Glenn's hot pattern; the Surf Miki3. I was fishing the pattern in size 8, and Glenn was using a size 6; Glenn felt that I was getting more hook-ups, but there was no question who was landing more fish.
But the fish of the day was the striper that I caught; first one for me from the beach. He hit the fly almost the instant it hit the water. Fortunately, the line was tight and I was able to set the hook. Although it was just a juvenile, it was a thrill nevertheless.
For me, it was the most productive day of fishing that I've ever had; nothing else even comes close. And I owe a great debt to Glenn and Jim; they very patiently explained water structure, hydraulics, and many other nuances of the fishery. But mostly, they taught by example; keep your fly in the water and keep casting and working moving water.
For those who have been thinking about trying for perch, clearly, now is the time. Glenn's site and others can be of great help, so check them out. But as has often been stated on this board, fishing with someone with experience can greatly shorten the learning curve and, as I learned so dramatically today, greatly increase your chances at catching good numbers of fish.
Thanks to Glenn and Jim for a wonderful day!