First skunking in the new kayak


Well-known member
Dang, that did not take long. I think that was the first time I have been skunked fishing for sturgeon in the lower Willamette. I launched out of Swan Island and wanted to spend the day looking for fish out in the current. I know they are still kegged up around the dry docks, but I know there have to be plenty living normal sturgeon lives as well.

I marked a ton of fish - especially in water >50' deep that behaved like sturgeon on the sonar. They were on the bottom and occasionally one would swim by a little off the bottom. Usually when I see that out in the main river it is money.

I tried spot after spot (got plenty of exercise pulling my anchor) and each time I would maybe get a few peck and gone bites. I assume those are not sturgeon, but I am not sure what they are. The baits were not chewed up like when a bullhead or pikieminnow bites them. I am at a loss.

I saw fish jump around the dry docks but I did not see any fish jump out in the river proper. There was a big sea lion working the harbor near its mouth so I am sure there are sturgeon swimming around in that area. I did see it with a fish one time. The fish was not huge so it was either a shaker sturgeon or perhaps a big sucker or something.

The only bright point of the trip was getting to see how the new kayak behaves when the conditions are sloppy. The wind had the river whipped up pretty well - especially when the gusts would hit. The new kayak slices nicely through that slop which is what I was hoping for with the new hull design.

A small victory but you need to take where you can get them :)

Did anyone have any success out in the main river in the harbor area? If so I would love to know the depth you were fishing. I tried everything from 30' to as deep as I could find.

I could not post this in the sturgeon fishing forum :)


Well-known member
Thanks Mark. I post a lot of stuff on how to catch fish, it seems only fair to post on how NOT to catch fish :)