Sunday, February 13, 2011

San Francisco Fishing Tour

Need a crash course in San Francisco Fishing?  Kirk Lombard, author of the Monkeyface (Eel) News is your man.  Today he held a wild food workshop through Forage SF on the San Francisco waterfront that went way beyond regular rod and reel fishing.  Attendees learned to poke pole for monkeyface eels, toss a Hawaiian casting net, forage for mussels and other shellfish, find bait, identify seaweeds and crab using small traps from a fishing pole.  Even seasoned fishing folks attended and learned something new from Kirk's workshop.

Crab Fishing

Crab fishing was first on the agenda and we immediately retrieved a double header of Dungeness Crabs.  Dungeness aren't legal within the Golden Gate and they were small (less than 5 and 3/4 inches) so they were quickly tossed back.  People fishing for crabs in this location are going for another type known as the rock crab which are difficult to crack but just as delicious as Dungeness.  For more on this type of crabbing, see crabbing at the Pacifica Pier.

A Double Header!
Explaining Bait

Sustainability was also a huge focus of Kirk's workshop.  The Italian side of me was pleased when Kirk suggested eating fish at the bottom of the food chain, such as herring and anchovies.  In an earlier blog, I wrote about a Belize fishing vacation where the bait (feshly netted sardines) was the best fish we ate all week.  Local edible bait fish include Herring, Anchovies and smelt.

Native American Style Smelt Net

The workshop was fast paced and more about passing on information then actual fishing.  Nonetheless, participants were encouraged to fish along side Kirk as long as they had a valid California fishing license.
Hawaiian Casting Net

Finding bait like worms and crabs under rocks
The best part of the workshop was the demonstration on poke poling for monkeyface eels.  I have seen fisherman do this type of fishing in Pacifica during the minus tide and have always wanted to try it.  Eels are plentiful and Kirk explained that without a commercial fishery for them, they are considered a sustainable fish.  Although he didn't catch an eel today, he did catch a small Cabezon and Rock fish.

Poke Poling for Eels
All in all, the workshop was fantastic.  It was very informative and mixed with both men and women.  If you go, bring a pair of shoes you can get wet, warm clothing, and a pad of paper to record Kirks wealth of information.  Now, I'm off to go fishing.

1 comment:

  1. Fishing is enjoyed by many different people throughout the world. Fishing gives a wonderful reason to spend time reconnecting with the beauty of nature. You can do it alone or with people you love.

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