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1rst WSB

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Deeper Blue Wayfarer
Jul 12, 2003
I shot my first White Sea Bass yesterday afternoon!:p

There is a about 300 (N.-S.) yards of inshore kelp that a school of mostly juveniles has been frequenting, so I've been stalking them. More accurately, I've been patroling this area ever slower and quieter each time, in order for them to pass by me and perhaps linger. The slightest air bubble or ear squeak and they're gone. But they do come back to the same areas, and they seem to reappear out of nothingness. Most of the time I've seen them, I've seen bat rays first. On my first pass through the kelp I saw mostly some small ones, but there was also several "larger" (28-42") ones who sensed, perhaps, my intentions and quickly disappeared. On my second pass I was basically just floating above the kelp, with literally just my toes moving my fins when I saw the smaller ones first coming out of the kelp and grass. Some larger ones appeared and I lay on the surface stock still, with my gun pointed. I exhaled and as I descended (sank actually; I had weighted myself heavey) I got a bead just behind the gill plate on a good sized one and let my spear fly. Their reactions are incredible: he seemed to actually be fleeing the shaft by the time it entered about 4" behind the gill plate! He fought of course and I swam to him, after dropping my gun and grabbing the floatline, in order to make sure the flopper was all the way through him. I let him thrash in the kelp awhile until he went to the bottom and lay in some grass. I dove down and dispatched him.

32 inches. Not a monster, but the biggest fish I've ever shot and it feels nice to have my first White!

My little lady took a photo (film) of it at home that night and the DFG guy on the beach (I almost got a ticket for being out after sunset) took a photo of it too, so I'll try to post something.

Roan in Orange County.
Congrats on your WSB, im looking for my 1st one also. Have heard that some of the DFG guys and lifeguards in some OC parks like to hassle. I didnt know sunset was in issue. Will keep that in mind. At least he helped with the pic. Looking forward to seeing it.
Congratulations. That story takes me back more than thirty years to a kelp bed off Anacapa.
tres smooth!

Major congratulations, Roan!!

I agree with Bill... the White Sea Bass will now forever be in your mind. The stone still stalk, the quiet anticipation, scaring them off for no apparent reason(s) and the excitement that split second before you pull the trigger and you know you have it, and the kick up with it wrapped in your grip... still get's me going.

Great story that I have no doubt will get the rest of you So Cal types looking at the dust collecting on the gear.
Ah, it's stories like that one that can get an gimpy vet'ran out to learn this ahyear sport. Broiled WSB with lots of garlic butter and Bwana Walt's Safari Hot Sauce. Mmmm-mm!
:eek: Thanks for the props, it means a lot to me coming from you guys!

the state parks here close at sunset and my current favorite spot lies within one. Problem is, my favorite time to dive is afternoon until sunset. Morning and miday is fine, but the energy in the water, late afternoon seems best to me. Critters seem to be waking up and on the move. Yup, I've been chased out of the park a couple of times (hehehe). Having heard from other spearos world wide on this website how so many oceans are virtually unpatrolled, I'm glad these guys (DFG, Wardens) are there. Sure, some are smoother than others. But their task is huge. I was talking to one longtime local surfer there today and he told me of a clan that used to go down there on a regular basis; a couple of them would act as sentrys on Warden duty, while the others would go out and raid the lobster traps. Gunny sacks full of them.:rcard
I'd definitely like to see our parks have a curfew of say 1 hour past sunset (I think it makes more sense) but so far my bribes to state officials have been rebuffed!;)
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Yay Roan!!!

:king I get a visual of Peter doing the hunter-dance on the beach around a WSB....You da man!!! Congrats, Peter!! Here's to many, many more.... :p

:cool: BTW, I'm sure your compadres at OC Hunter would love it if you showed at the February meeting (the 19th, at 7:30pm) with a couple of pics and your story. :king

Good one. This kelp bed sounds a little bigger than the one we were diving this summer. Farther of shore?

You're so lucky to live where you can dive this time of year. What's temp and vis like?

I'd karminate you, but the karma sysem says I need to spread the manure (stole that pithy observation on karmic restrictions from unirdna).

Yup, Cynth I was dancing; if not on the beach, then definitely on my insides!:D I did have a bite of sashimi on the beach, if you know what I mean (he had a nice size wound from trying to shake off my spear). I picked up from a dive buddy (Hooch?) the practice of gutting my catches right away on the rocks and it leaves something for the gulls.

I shot this guy?/gal? right out in front of the spot you and yours were camped at on that beach! Fairly close to shore that whole area is 70% covered in a kind of inshore kelp and eel grass (I think it's called). When there is little or no surf and the vis is high a whole world opens up to the eye there.
Water seems to be hovering around mid to high fifties and the vis is generally much better, more often than when you were here. But then again it's vis; it changes so often and for several reasons (surf, rainstorms), like tides: if there is little difference between the level of a low tide and a high tide then the vis is more likely to be better. I'm wearing a 4/3 surf suit with a 5/3 hooded vest under that and a polyprope rash guard under that and other than the water that leaks in through the zipper (brrr) I'm doing fine.
BTW What are your summer plans? So Cal? or are we all trekking to Wisconsin this year?
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Of course, wouldn't you know it. The one day I don't dive with you, you get the major brass ring. Congratulations! I love the way your observations and experience prepared you for this opportunity. You've made it through the So Cal spearo's rite of passage that I still need to achieve.
thats great Roan, keep it doing. I know that feel is great, no matter the size;)

Hey, aren't we supposed to lob some Karma on Roan in honor of his first kill? I'd start....but the software says I gotta spread the joy further.....Let's go, fellas!
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