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Went out early this morning just driving around the river and checking out possible sturgeon holes and hit the jackpot. About 5am I'm walking down a trail and on the other side of the river I see something that looks like it could be good. 20 minutes later I'm walking down the other side of the river and it starts to look good, real good. Then I see three dudes there fishing. So I sneak up in the bushes and listen in for a bit. They're fishing for sturgeon. And they're talking about ones they've caught there before. I sneak back out do a few fist pumps on the way back to the car. I have no gear with me so I go back home.

After about an hour im too amped to fall asleep so I grab my 11'6" clarus matched up with a king pin and go out to my usual spot, because its so close to home, to pin up some goldeye. Its like I'm fishing for coho in slow water. Small foam float, little piece of lead and a half a dew worm on a short leader. Immediately I'm into goldeye. And somewhere I the next hour and a half of consistent action I also manage a small walleye. My first one ever. And I caught it on the pin lol

Part of me gets it and admires it (desperate fisherman making the best of it) and the other part depresses the hell out of me. haha
 

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Discussion Starter #23
I like to catch them by jigging. They don't swallow the hook...
I don't like to catch them at all. By catch and caught on a single barbless, fell right out anyways...


Part of me gets it and admires it (desperate fisherman making the best of it) and the other part depresses the hell out of me. haha
Ugg, tell me about it. I wouldn't wish this kind of fishing on anyone who is passionate about west coast fishing but its all I've got for now. Hopefully I can start to figure out the sturgeon soon, its really my last hope. I really don't want to be one of those guys who talks about the great fishing that he used to do and now just wanders the river at the meat holes not doing anything awesome anymore :(
 

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Discussion Starter #27 (Edited)
It was fantastic.

After work I had to drive a buddy home who lives close to me so I stopped in back at my place to refuel and pick up my gear. Ended up at the river around d 6am or so. Strung up the 10.5' bar rod, attached a 5 oz pyramid sinker and tied on a 2/0 gammi on a 30lb braided leader with a shiner for bait and tossed it out.

About an hour later I get some small taps, I gently pick up the rod, the taps stop, I put the rod down. I get some more small taps, I gently pick up the rod, the taps stop, I put the rod down. I get some more small taps, I gently pick up the rod, the taps stop, I put the rod down. I get some more small taps and let it sit. It turns into a good pull i set the hook hard. Immediately the line starts coming for the surface and I know what going to happen. Sturgeon jump! I was both excited and terrified lol OMG I hooked one! OMG I really don't want to lose it!

Pic. Release. Rebait.

15 min later a fish hits like a freight train. Party time! This fish is bigger and runs some line and fights hard for a few minutes before also coming in for a quick pick and release.

I stuck it out for another hour or so but nothing more happened. Two hours, two lake sturgeon. Oh ya, its on now.
 

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Way to go AB, great to see ya finally into the sturgeon. I am sure there are lots more to come now that you got the first one out of the way. Thats a nice looking fish.

Oly
 

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Love the posts, and don't give one hoot that your not in BC or catching "ideal" fish the ideal way. I have always wanted to catch DIY Sturgeon so awesome job. Wish we had more threads with plenty of pics and good insights.
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Nice job. And they get a lot bigger...Ive caught them up to 75 pds...
I figure for the average fish I'm likely to catch my set up should be good and on the off hand chance that I do hook up big I shouldn't be under gunned.

So since you're here, got any tips on bait? I feel as though it's really holding me back but I'm not sure what I should be doing differently. Worms and shiners's is what I've been using so far. I was thinking about using goldeye, kind of like using salmon out in BC, since there seems to be a lot of them around and they've got to be a natural food source.
 

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Worms and shiners work. Go into any Fishing Hole store for your bait and a bull shyte, them dudes luv their Sturgeon...
 

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Discussion Starter #34
So in preparation for more serious efforts to catch sturgeon more consistently I hit up the tackle store and purchased some more supplies. Few more leads, some 3/0 and 4/0 hooks and some limper 50lb leader line.

Hit the river at the same spot as last time around 6:30, baited up with worms on the new 3/0 leader combo and waited. The river was significantly lower than a few days previously. As in 125 cms less flow. Tuesday when I was out it was at 450 cms and yesterday 325 cms. Huge fluctuations. So with the lower flows I set up lower in the run where there was some flow. A couple taps but nothing good. A buddy from work showed up around 7 and tossed out with leaches.

Fast forward four and a half hours.

So far all we have to show for our efforts are 2 walleye, 1 sucker and 1 goldeye :p

A jet ski and a jet boat roll by and I start a joking commentary for several minutes about how the wave action is stirring up the lethargic sturgeon and whipping them into a frezny down below.

The waves have barely stopped slapping the shore and I start to get bit. I ease the rod out of the holder as the taps build to a gentle pull and set the hook hard. A fish with a little weight starts going nuts and quickly wraps itself up in several feet of line. Its a small sturgeon similar to my first one earlier I the week. We unravel it and send it back. Hook land and release all in under a minute lol

Not 5 min later my buddy starts to get bit. He's not quite as smooth getting g the rod out and the bites stop. Fish comes back shortly and starts really biting hard but somewhere between picking g up the rod and setting the hook the fish drops the bait.

About an hour later the sun, lack of sleep, food and water takes its toll on us and we pack it in.

Today, its time to explore and find some new water.
 

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Discussion Starter #38 (Edited)
So yesterday during my exploring I stumbled across a long mud flat that starts off around 2' deep and just gradually tapers down into about 12'. There's a couple access points to fish it from the beach. The middle access is about mid way and around 6' deep. The other one is right near the bottom and around 10' -12'; both spots with nice even slowly flowing water. The top spot is where I pegged to be a good higher water area and the lower is where I had some good action yesterday.

I have a veryimited amount of time both seasonally and weekly to get out and make this happen so at 2:30am his morning I decided to hit middle beach. Im on the river as I type this. I saw a small sturgeon roll here yesterday and in the 15 min that I've been set up so far another has rolled right in front of me.

We'll see how this pans out but I'm hopefully that it will make for a half decent night fishing spot.

 

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Discussion Starter #39
Well last week I was getting a little cocky, thought I was pretty slick going out and having pretty good success with both finding good water and hooking fish fairly consistently. This week... kicked straight in the jewels. Easily over 30 hours on the water and not even a long stare from a good fish. Ive been pounding good water, water that I've already caught fish in and nothing. Ugh. But if anything, not catching fish really just makes me head out there even more. I've been running on 4 hours sleep each night because I keep heading out for "just a couple hours" after work.

I've been asking around a bit and gently probing for some of the even most general info and not really getting anywhere. Same kind of answers that I'd expect to get from an average steelheader; some times you get hem and sometimes you go for days with out them. Im not buying it. I fully believe that these guys are telling the truth but I don't believe that that is how it has to be. Im going to have to start keeping track of more conditions. I need to see where the patterns start to emerge. Im going to figure these fish out. I figure it will take a couple or three years before I'm comfortable with the level of knowledge and skills I'll need to get there but eventually I want to get near the same level with sturgeon out here as I had with steelhead out there.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
So on the up side of exploring the river out here, there is a very good park/trail system through the city limits that gives access to nearly every meter of water. On the down side, it seems like there's a hundred km's of river to hike and probe hoping for the right combination of depth, flow, access and lack of snags. Water that lookes very promising usually isn't. Most of the time it's depth related. Looks good on top but pop a few casts in and its only a few feet deep. Worse though is when you find a good looking piece of water, flow is just right but there are so many snags that you lose all your gear on just about every cast. Sometimes the flow is good, snag free and good access but there is no where to land a fish for a hundred meters in either direction.

If only I could convince my wife to let me sell my car to fund an suv and boat.

And finally today I found what I was looking for, a huge piece of soft water that's from 12'-18' deep and easily a couple hundred meters long. Its not completely snag free but I'd say about 80% clean. Best part is that I didn't see any fisherman's garbage there like at the other places I've been too. I haven't hooked up there yet but I did see one jump clear of the water and another roll so I know they are there. Now its just a matter of time. Hopefully about 12 hours of time since I plan on heading back there early tomorrow morning.
 
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