PDA

View Full Version : Trip Report: Newport September 16, 2009


Devildiver
09-22-2009, 12:05 AM
My little brother and I headed to Newport at 0530 on Wednesday, September 16. Our main objective was to paint our house at Otter Rock before the rains come this winter. I of course, had planned to spend as much time in the water as possible.

When we arrived in Newport, the skies were black, and it was raining hard. We got to the house and unpacked our gear. After a while it became apparent that we could not scrape the house, or start painting in the torrential downpour:D. We decided to go spearing. 30 minutes later we were gearing up at the Newport Jetty in the rain.

Jake (my brother) is not a spearfisherman; this was his virgin trip hunting fish! Unfortunately, conditions did not help to ease his mind about the dangers of the sport. Though the water was over 60 degrees, the vis was 5' at best, and the current was ripping through like a damn river.

Not one to look like a puss, Jake followed me like a champ from one rock to the next. Being high tide, 95% of the structure was under water. We had to find our way from one rock to the next, swimming at 45* angle to the point - some 100 yards off shore.

Since the conditions weren't conducive to an ideal first trip, I decided to head straight for the point rather than trying to hunt every hole. When we got there, Jake had already picked up 2 red rock crab, and had the shit scared out of him when a seal knocked him off of the finger! I set up, and began to dive. Jake wasn't too comfortable yet, so I let him do his own thing to warm up. after a few drops, I came up with a nice black. This seemed to motivate him, almost as if he thought I was full of shit the whole time about shooting fish in Florida.

I dropped with him a few times, but he could not get his ears to clear. He went back to hunting crab, and whatever fish strayed too close to the surface.

I continued hunting, eventually taking 2 nice blacks, and one that ended up smaller than I had originally thought. At this point, Jake was getting cold and tired, so we began the swim back to shore. I kept diving, and thank god I did! 3/4 of the way out, I dropped down to 15'. To my right was the finger, basically a large rock wall, full of holes and hiding spots; to my left was sandy bottom. As i began to ascend, I looked up and saw a large rockfish hovering over a rock. I don't think he saw me coming from below because he didn't take any evasive action. I slowly brought my gun up, "aimed" and let one fly. It caught him in the head, exiting just behind the opposite pectoral fin. I immediately grabbed him, and surfaced. Again, this motivated Jake to look for fish, but his attempts proved unsuccessful.

We got back to the shore after an hour and a half in the water. We took our photos, cleaned the fish and gear, and headed back to the house.

Jake ended up with 4 red rock crab, and I took 4 nice blacks. Although he did not kill anything, the seed has been planted. Next time we go out, I'm going to leave my gun, and coach him the whole way.


The big black, (my personal best) ended up weighing 4lbs, 20" long, and 14" around:thumps:

Here are some pics.


Me and Jake


http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh12/devildiver223/Newport%20Spearing%20September%2016-20/September162009withJake.jpg



Jake's big Red rock


http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh12/devildiver223/Newport%20Spearing%20September%2016-20/September162009withJake4.jpg




My big black




http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh12/devildiver223/Newport%20Spearing%20September%2016-20/September162009withJake1.jpg



Big black next to my gun for perspective





http://i252.photobucket.com/albums/hh12/devildiver223/Newport%20Spearing%20September%2016-20/September162009withJake6.jpg






-Casey

jymz
09-22-2009, 11:14 AM
Thats a great crab and fish! I've been letting rockfish like that slide on by, time to take a shot! Looks like your gun is paying off everytime.

Devildiver
09-22-2009, 11:31 AM
You've been passing on 20" rockfish? really?

Tiburon
11-09-2009, 02:14 PM
I am from Florida but I am currently living in Seattle. I just wanted to ask you what size wetsuit you using? Do the seal lions or sharks bother you at all? How deep do you guys hunt? I really wish I could dive up here, I am a freediver but the conditions here are so much different from Florida. I am guessing you use such a small gun due to poor visibility right?

Devildiver
11-09-2009, 03:17 PM
Hey man, "welcome" to the PNW! I also started my spearfishing career in Florida, so I know what you mean about the conditions here.

I use a two piece, Open Cell 5mil made by Mako. It is very warm, and keeps me so on cold days. I do run hot though, If you get cold easily a 7mil would be better.

Where I usually spear, Sea Loins aren't a problem (at least not yet). Seals are ever curious, and occasionally buzz you while you're out there, but nothing dangerous.

Sharks here are cake compared to Fl. The only thing you've got to worry about is white sharks when you're diving inshore. I don't even bother wasting my time worrying about it (like is sometimes necessary in bull infested FL diving) because If the resident sharks bite me, I'm done for anyway....not too many people survive. White sharks are far less prolific here than the sharks in Fl, so even seeing one would be a rare treat.

The waters are more volatile here, you have to keep an eye on current, waves, etc, but all in all the diving is AMAZING. structure and animal life that I'd never even dreamed of diving in Fl. Dive with a buddy, and take things one step at a time, you'll be ok.

The gun is short because of generally poor vis, and also because inshore, you don't need anything bigger - Even for Pacific halibut! Just rig a breakaway line system and hold on!

Good luck with the diving up there, and if you ever get down this way, let me know so we can go diving.

Tiburon
11-09-2009, 04:24 PM
I truly admire divers like you. I don't know if I could ever dive here, I really like to be able to see the sharks from a distance before they decide to come in for a closer look. What is the visibility like on a good day? How deep do you usually dive?

Devildiver
11-09-2009, 06:36 PM
On a good day vis pushes 25+ feet inside the bay/on the coast. I hear the diving conditions get really good (vis wise) from November - March, but I can't attest to that yet.

The place I normally go has diving from 5' to around 40', depending on which finger you're diving, and what the tide is like. I'd like to do some offshore diving, which would be in 50-90', but I don't have any solid plans yet. We tried to get a tuna trip together this fall, but it did not pan out. We'll probably try again next year. The vis is suppose to be great further offshore when the tuna run through. It requires a big gun, and big balls - or no brain because it's very sharky, and you're a long way from help if something goes wrong. I fit into the later category, so please, don't admire me for being immune to significant brain function. I love spearfishing, so I've rationalized the sharks away. It works on most days.

overkillphil
11-09-2009, 09:35 PM
Growing up in the PNW, I can also say, don't sweat the GWS thing. IF they bite you, it's most likely over anyways as they don't tend to nibble. They are more interested in seals than a long legged diver. I'd dare to say that surfing around Cannon Beach or Warrenton more dangerous than diving anywhere on the Oregon/Washington coast. Surfers are the prime target of GWS Lol! Check out this site
http://www.sharkresearchworldwide.org/2000.htm
Nice Blacks by the way! Do you ever dive Netarts?:thumps:

winklecl
11-20-2009, 05:47 PM
Growing up in the PNW, I can also say, don't sweat the GWS thing. IF they bite you, it's most likely over anyways as they don't tend to nibble. They are more interested in seals than a long legged diver. I'd dare to say that surfing around Cannon Beach or Warrenton more dangerous than diving anywhere on the Oregon/Washington coast. Surfers are the prime target of GWS Lol! Check out this site
http://www.sharkresearchworldwide.org/2000.htm
Nice Blacks by the way! Do you ever dive Netarts?:thumps:

I'd agree with this statement. Boom, done. However, seems like most of the GWS stay a good distance south. I've heard that when people report seeing GWS in the PNW it is more often a large Salmon Shark (I think this is what they are http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salmon_shark) which look remarkable like GWS but smaller and not man eating ;). At least it gives a little warm fuzzy to think they're aren't too many GWS where I'm swimming.

Ron S
11-20-2009, 07:06 PM
I'd agree with this statement. Boom, done. However, seems like most of the GWS stay a good distance south. I've heard that when people report seeing GWS in the PNW it is more often a large Salmon Shark (I think this is what they are http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salmon_shark) which look remarkable like GWS but smaller and not man eating ;). At least it gives a little warm fuzzy to think they're aren't too many GWS where I'm swimming.

Hey, we'd be happy to start at Fort Brag and heard the big buggers on up north to ya, if ya don't think you have enough...:thumps:

Ron.

winklecl
11-20-2009, 07:10 PM
Hey, we'd be happy to start at Fort Brag and heard the big buggers on up north to ya, if ya don't think you have enough...:thumps:

Ron.

:lol: It wouldn't matter too much to me...I've spent 99.999% of my 15+ years diving for abs in Sonoma/Mendo counties. Can't get much more sharky than that!

Ron S
11-20-2009, 07:28 PM
:lol: It wouldn't matter too much to me...I've spent 99.999% of my 15+ years diving for abs in Sonoma/Mendo counties. Can't get much more sharky than that!

Yeah that's what they tell me. One of these days I still wanna get the family up to Oregon or Washington and do some true PNW spearing though. The stuff you guys post is just incredible!:thumps:

Ron.