Friday, September 27, 2013

The Cambria Slam Down II

      Saturday was an amazing day on the water over one hundred and twenty kayak anglers hit the water at the same time for Central Coast Kayak Fishing's Cambria Slam Down Two. An event months in planning and highly anticipated.

Leffingwell Landing
          I got off work on Friday at four o'clock and tried to drive home without speeding. The night before I was in Walmart and got recognized by a member of the forum. What got me about this encounter was how stoked he was and that he was taking off work Friday to get a day on the water to scout it out. Sometimes I forget I am not the only one obsessed with fishing, and it struck me how big this site I joined a little over a year ago had grown. I got home with out wrecking or getting a ticket and loaded what I thought was everything. We were on the road for about fifteen minutes when I realized I forgot my stringer, Hawg trough, and a warm shirt or sweater. I turned back and got those items completely forgetting a large grey lockable box with all of our food and my wife's text books...

        We got to the camp site at around eight thirty and got set up with the help of a few friends. I feel extremely blessed to meet these people. There just doesn't seem to be a lot of people out there willing to be kind and lend a hand these days, so I try not to look past them when they come into my life. Speaking of awesome people, Ed of Four Season Angler Custom Rods did me a solid and whipped together an amazing rod, for a great price, and got it to me in time for the tourney (I will do a review of it some time soon). After getting setup we sat around the fire listening to Joe Koenig play the guitar and sing. I didn't get to the tent until late setting the alarm on my phone to five a.m.

Photo via Fisheye Channel
     I thought there would be a traffic jam with that many fishermen trying to get ready, but it turned out to go rather smoothly. Seeing how my wheels were out of condition I just drug my kayak through the grass from the day use area to the beach. It was great meeting guys from the site I have interacted with on the forum but never met in person. The swell was tame and people were eager to get on the water. It was amazing watching people leave the beach heading out of the bay into open water
Via Fisheye Channel

    I stayed back on the beach for a few minutes, there is no rush getting into the water a minute or two late. Watching people get in was interesting, some guys slid into the water the got onto their yaks in a smooth motion and others not so much. One guy drug his yak to the water and sat down only to be left back in the rocks, he sat and waited for three more swells until he slowly paddled away. I was in awe because most launches like that end up with a wet guy that has to pick up some gear. It was perfect conditions for all the fishermen involved to get off the beach quickly and safely.
       Willy and I got on the water and we decided to start fishing kelp patties. Occasionally we'd drop down on spots in between when we spotted marks on our fish finders. The wind and rain were not treating us well though. Besides being blown around the rain made it hard for Willy and I to see through our glasses. We got blown around tangled in the kelp for about an hour and a half before I got my first fish. A grass rockfish ate a polliminner.   Not a real big fish but it was good to break in the rod. Willy had the next fish when he managed to snag a lingcod in the side with a jigging iron. Most of the radio chatter was people complaining about how weak the bite was. We got to a spot a little deeper in between two dense patches of kelp an I saw some strong marks above some rocks. I dropped down and immediately hooked into a ling. I pulled up the reddest ling I have ever seen, but he was just above the legal limit so he went back down.  I dropped my rig in the same spot and had a hit after a few jigs and pulled up a twenty-seven inch ling.

Yard sale photo Fish Eye channel (not me)
We kept on fishing catching small rockfish here and there but it was not a steady bite. We moved out deeper to fish reefs, but there was nothing out there besides sand dabs. We started hearing reports about rough surf at the beach and chalked it up to people not used to Leffingwell. There were a few yard sales reported, for those of you who don't know a yard sale is what happens when one wipes out on the beach. Gear gets spread out like it is on sale.  Seeing how a lot of people were heading in and I only had two species Willy and I decided to stay out a bit longer and take our time heading in.
Willy paddling in 
Photo via Fish Eye Channel
   Willy and I got onto the beach about twenty-five minutes after final check in. No reason to rush because I saw bigger fish on stringers while I was fishing. Being out of the contest helps me relax and enjoy the day more. right as we came in the sun started burning through the fog and breaking up the clouds. If only it would have lasted.

   The spread for the potluck was pretty ineradicable. There was crevice, fresh panko fried fish, fruit, desserts, pasta salads, and all sorts of amazing stuff. Everybody was so nice and cool the food tasted great. I am not sure there is more one could ask for. Raffle tickets were sold and prizes were handed out.

Congratulations Ricci. I hope you enjoy your new Outback. Photo via Fisheye Channel
2013 Cambria Slam Down. Picture VIA Fisheye
    It was an amazing fun day to get out meet new people fish and enjoy my favorite way to fish. Thank you Ryan Howell for all your hard work and dedication in getting this event together and running it as smooth as it went. Thanks Mike and Amy for splitting a campsite with my wife and I. Thanks to the guys pulling people up off the beach making sure no one got hurt. Thank you people who made it to the tourney as well as the members of Central Coast Kayak Fishing for being just awesome. Thank you Fish Eye Channel for the photos (I can't wait to see the video). 
Time to start planning for next year. 

Thanks for reading,

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If you need a new rod contact Ed here:

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  1. Daniel
    What an awesome adventure, and the fish was an added bonus. thanks for sharing

    1. It was. Not going to lie, winning that kayak would have been nice.


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