IFish Fishing Forum banner
  • Are you passionate about fishing? Would you like to write about topics that interest you and get paid for it? Read all about it here!
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
New in to Oregon, planning to head out of Hammond tuesday for my first try at salmon fishing here. I've got an alumaweld stryker - 17.5 ft, 90hp&15hp. Should I be nervous about going out over the bar? Sound like that's where the fish are ...

Also, what size flasher should we be using & where can you buy fresh herring in the early a.m.? Thanks
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,501 Posts
short answer: no, you don't have enough boat. at times, no one has enough boat for the columbia bar. other times, it really comes down to the skill and experience of the captain. of late, it seems like the reports on the bar are that it's been very calm but it's guaranteed not to stay that way.

i would suggest you find a salty dog to tag along with or maybe have one in your boat. if you choose to go without one, at least carry a handheld vhf and a gps to you can tell the coast guard where to come and get you. the bar will kill you if you don't know what you're doing.

ps: wear your pfd.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10,558 Posts
I don't think you have enough boat. You could probably get away with it, or maybe you'd turn into a statistic. Are fish worth it? However, you shouldn't need to go out over the bar - there are already fish inside, and that will just get more true as the weeks go on.

You can get bait several places on the way to the Hammond ramp. I get mine through the store right at the corner where you turn in towards the park.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
440 Posts
The question is not "do you have enough boat" it should be "do you have enough captian".

Play it safe, bad things happen fast.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,182 Posts
I'd say as a rule, NO. Sure, there are some good flat days. You might sneak out, but it can turn quick and you may be miles out and not even realize the deteriorating conditions back at the bar. It's a long treacherous ride back sometimes, and your boat likely won't handle bigger bathtube chop.It gets sloppy quick. I saw some boats as small as 14 foot at bouy 10 and that made me pretty nervous. At least wear life jackets guys! The river is going to only get better daily so make that the ticket and you'll be back to fish for years to come. Be safe and sound.
GBS
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,105 Posts
Stay in and fish 10. No need to risk it for small silvers. By next week it should be smokin in the river.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,387 Posts
I guess once again my opinion will differ from the masses. Do you have enough boat you ask? That's a decision you have to make yourself based upon your time on the water and experience you have handling big water. I would take a 17.5 Stryker out to the spark plug on certain conditions. Does your boat have self bailing scuppers? If so make sure they are three times the size that the factory puts in. When I ordered my sled I made sure my bailing holes were very big. Do you know how to manuever in swells and read water and tides? Does your motor run without fail and you have working bilge pumps? Do you have a compass, GPS, and VHF on board? If your answer yes to these questions and can plan a trip to cross that bar on a flood tide and be back inside before the tide is ebbing out, I think you have plenty of boat.

I have made 14 bar crossing thus far this year chasing salmon but I plan my trips on the tides, ocean conditions, wind speed and direction, and ocean trend. Be sure and either hook up with someone that has crossed that bar before or at the very least run with another boat that has. My first crossing was solo and I had a blast. I would however suggest jumping the bar at Newport a few times to get the swing of things. There are plenty of Salmon to be had due west of the jaws. I have been putting boat limits on my boat trip after trip and averaging 20 fish to the boat for a 4 hour trip. That's not including the fish you loose or the rod ripping takedowns that don't stick. We put 8 in the box yesterday for four rods.

Good luck and be safe. Use your own judjement and pick your days. I have people ask me all the time, "you went out 12 miles in that :shocked: ". I love it when I hear that :grin:

[ 08-11-2003, 09:37 AM: Message edited by: Tacklebuster ]
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,425 Posts
cf,

Safe bet is stay inside of Buoy 10. I'm new to Oregon also but have been running inlets in small to big fishing boats (17'-63') and I wouldn't take my current 22' high sided boat out the Columbia Bar.

Well...maybe on a really flat day with another boat on my wing...but generally no.

I've fished Astoria for three seasons now, all inside and limited out all the time. As David Johnson pointed out in another message thread. Hit'em where they are...pick the best times so you don't have to push the envelope...particularly when that envelope is the most dangerous inlet in Northern Hemisphere.

Great article by Lance Fisher in current Oregon and Hunting Fishing news on basic inside spots for fishing the August season in Astoria.

I'd pick that up, follow Lance's advice on spots to fish inside and have fun.

Brion
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,515 Posts
I have a 17 stryker SJ, no way I'd run over the bar in it. I've been on the lower CR and seen it turn bad in minutes when the wind comes up. I wouldn't want to be outside and have to run in when that happens. No fish is worth risking your life.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,818 Posts
You can order your herring from Free Willys at Hammond or pick it up at any of the stores in town. I like the large flashers behind a diver. Cut plug herring or coyote spoons work good. With your boat I would stay inside and fish the incoming tide. Plenty of Salmon between Hammond and the bridge. Just troll along the green can line with the tide. If you put in on the Washington side at Chinook I like to fish the Church hole up to the bridge. Another good place is down river from Chinook in front of the wingdams for Chinook. Be careful it can get rough on the ebb out in front of Hammond. Watch your depth if you run across river. Plenty of sand bars to run up on during low tide.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,387 Posts
Just something to chew on..... Buoy 10 is the head of the bar. I get a kick out of people that fish 10 proper but "would never take my boat across that bar". I have seen it way more treacherous trolling that area than out at #2 and the Plug. I personally think the area between 20 and 14 is more treacherous than the bar when she has lazy 4 to 5 foot swells on a slack or flood tide.

Look at the statistics just for a moment, how many boats have capsized around 10 and below compared to the bar and west? I don't know the hard number off hand but I do know more boats have been swamped and capsized inside over the past three years than outside. Just because you cross the bar and the fish the ocean on a nice day, on the right stage of the tide, and have the proper safety gear doesn't mean you are pushing the envelope.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,569 Posts
I've seen smaller boats out there. (And said, "that's guy's nuts!")

I've crossed the bar (as a passenger) in a 24' cruiser that seemed REALLY SMALL.

I wouldn't cross the bar in any boat without taking a co-pilot that knew their stuff. It's only a "learning experience" if your still alive at the end of the day. I've watched too many choppers searching out there. :depressed:

Gee, I haven't said anything positive... I'd say your chances are pretty good, you probably might be just fine. 9 days out of 10.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,949 Posts
Okay, well, there's guys (at least one) been sighted out there on personal watercraft. So it could be said that a 17.5' craft is plenty large. :shrug:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,617 Posts
CF,
As you can see, there are a lot of opinions of what length is safe and what is not. More important than whether you "can" cross the bar, I think it is more important to be informed on what conditions are and how they can change. You are dealing with many factors that effect the "bar" including: tide timing, tide change(how intense or how much water is flowing in or out), wind direction, wind velocity, weather pattern, current wind waves, current Swells, and a few other variables. I monitor all theses things and can usually make a fairly accurate (can I cross, is it safe to cross, can I make it back in) decision.

I would say it is more important to understand how these things work together than anything else. All these variables fit together into a "yes-its safe" or "no-go." Some days you can cross safely, other days it isn't safe to do so. First and foremost is to understand what your dealing with. Varibles such as tides are cyclical but other factors such as wind can be unpredictable. Its important to pay attention.

Understanding the variables will give you the info you need to make your own decision. However, many will look at the same information and make different decisions. Eventually it will come down to your own personal comfort level.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,569 Posts
Go out a couple of times in someone else's boat, just to see exactly what you are wanting to get yourself into!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
585 Posts
cf
Fincliped has given you very good advice. Its soooo important to understand that you may go down there and find conditions that warrent going to a good resturant and forget the fishing. I have been over the bar in a 15 ft boat with a 5 ft beam. Of course I saw a guy rowing what looked like a 14 or 15 ft open row boat the same day. I had my worst trip across in a 26ft Cutlass. We came in badly bruised and scraped. I had a heck of a cut on my forehead from being thrown around. You have to look before you commit. Outgoing tides are ones I will not even consider.........they can turn into a nightmare in a short time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,505 Posts
Been over the bar with a freind in a 17' formula vee few times and all was well. He was a good captain and we picked days when the ocean was flat and headed in at the first sign of big water.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,234 Posts
There really isn't much difference between a 17.5 and a 19 or 20ft.. You still have to pick your days carefully.. Days I don't want to be out in a 17 fter are days I wouldnt' want to be out in a 20 fter..

I have the 19ft stryker and I have ran 23 miles out for tuna.. (was flat as glass though)

Pick your days and go with someone with experience first. that is the key.. learn from someone else that knows first!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,949 Posts
cf - aren'tcha glad you asked? :grin: The guys aren't really beating you up, they're concerned for your well-being.

Hop over to the Salty Dogs board, hang out, do some reading, join a dog or two for some salt, then you can decide whether you're ready for bouy 10 or the rest of the ocean.

Happy fishing! And welcome!
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top