Frequently Asked Questions 


General Info


Do I need to bring any fishing gear? 

It’s all provided, but you’re welcome to bring your own if you’d like.


What should I bring? 
Expect cool weather.  Dress in layers, and bring a jacket.  Also recommended: sunglasses, hat, sunscreen, comfortable shoes.  Camera….


What about food? 
You’re welcome to bring any food or drink you’d like.  Some folks bring ice chests on board.  There is a small microwave in the cabin you can use.  We also have a sink.


What kind of fishing license will I need? 
Just the basic California fishing license is all you need. Children up to the age of 16 do not need licenses for fishing. Anyone wanting to keep your crab will need a CA Crab trap validation, you can pick them up anywhere you get your fishing licenses 

Note: We no longer sell the one-day-only licenses - but you can also obtain them online:


Is there a minimum age? 
We discourage parents from bringing infants and toddlers on board. Five hours is a long time for little guys.


What if I’ve never fished before? 
This is the boat for you!  With only six passengers on board, the captain can take the time to help you have an enjoyable fishing experience.


Who cleans the fish? 
The captain will make every effort to clean your fish.  He may have to ask for your assistance if there are limits for all on board.


Is there a bathroom on the boat? 

Bathroom? No.  Private PortaPotty: Yes.


What happens if the weather’s bad? 
We do fish rain or shine (although it may only rain one or two days all summer.)  If the seas are rough, however, the captain will meet with you prior to your trip to discuss the conditions.  Our goal is for you to have an enjoyable experience and want to return and recommend us to your friends.  If it’s so rough that you’re just “holding on” then you won’t have much fun fishing.  Please do NOT decide to cancel your trip based on a weather forecast, as they are often inaccurate.  We ask that you come to the boat as originally scheduled to see what Captain Bob or Sam has to say.  If the trip is indeed cancelled due to bad weather, your deposit will be returned to you.  On some occasions we will try to contact you prior to your trip to alert you about a trip cancellation – that is why we ask for a cell phone or local phone number when you make your reservation.


How do I find the boat? 
-Map-  Take the Trinidad Exit on Hwy 101.  Turn towards the gas station to get onto Main St.  After just a couple of blocks turn left on Trinity (you'll see the elementary school).  After two short blocks, Trinity ends at Edwards where you'll see the famous Memorial Lighthouse that overlooks the picturesque harbor.  Turn right on Edwards to go down to the large parking area at the harbor (you'll see the signs for the Seascape Restaurant).  After you've walked about half way down the pier, take the set of stairs on the right hand side.  Those lead down to the floating dock where the bright red Jumpin' Jack will be tied.


Rockcod Info 


What kinds of fish will we catch?

 Black rockfish (90% of the catch)  average weight: 2-3 pound (up to 8 pounds)

Lingcod  22 inch minimum length, weights range from 3 to 30+ pounds 
Vermillion rockfish 
Kelp and Rock Greenling

Blue rockfish 
China rockfish 
Yellowtail rockfish 
Quillback rockfish 
Tiger rockfish 
Grass rockfish 
Copper rockfish 
the bottom (just kidding)


How much do the Black rockfish filets weigh? 
Typically, about 40% of the weight of the fish.


How many can we keep? 
2023: Ten rockfish, Ten can be blacks, and two lingcods

(22" minimum for lings), per trip.


How far out will we fish? 
Less than ¾ mile from shore.  (Sometimes way less.)


What’s the average running time? 
Just 25 minutes (45 max).


How deep will we be fishing? 
100 feet is about our maximum depth.  Generally we’re fishing from 30 to 60 feet (sometimes less, weather permitting.)


What kind of gear will we be using? 
On the boat we have a selection of 1-1/2 oz and 2 oz diamond-bars.  We also have ¾ to 1-1/2 oz lead-head jigs with a variety of 4-inch scampy or 6-inch curl-tail swim-baits.


What pound test line? 
17 pound test mono.


Will we use bait? 
Some customers choose to bring bait for rockcod fishing, but the captain believes in these waters a well-presented lure will catch just as many, if not more, fish than if you use bait.  (note: this is not a challenge.)


What are the best times of year to catch rockcod? 
Summertime: Memorial Day through Labor Day (really!)


Do the fish bite better in the morning or afternoon? 
The captain’s answer to this oft-asked question:  “When I look back in history, and recall the trips where the fish were biting like crazy, the afternoon generally comes to mind.  In saying this, however, when I look back to the trips when the fish weren’t biting at all, the afternoon generally comes to mind as well.  On the whole, the mornings are more consistent, but I have clients who always insist on fishing in the afternoon."


Does the tide matter? 
Depending on the weather, it can.  It’s complicated.

You’ll just have to pay the $160 to get on board and ask the captain why. 


Salmon Info

What days can I fish for salmon in 2023?.

CLOSED this year



Crabbing Info


How does the crabbing part work? 
It’s easy! 

At trip’s end, the captain stops at his crab traps and pulls them up. 

He divides the crab amongst the customers.


What’s the cost for crabbing? 
It’s included in the price of the trip. New to this year you will need to pick up a CA crab tag validation where ever you pick up your fishing license to be able to keep your crab.


What part of the summer can we crab? 
Through July 30th.


How many can we keep? 
Ten (males and/or females) over 5-3/4 inches.


How long can I keep them before I cook them? 
Best to cook them the day they’re caught. 

Some customers put them on ice and take them back to the Redding area to cook the next morning. 

I wouldn’t push it any more than that.


How do I cook and clean them? 
It's not that hard! 

Reservations / Payment Info


What days do you fish? 
We make two trips a day, seven days a week

from Memorial Weekend in late May through early-September.


How much does it cost?  

    2023 rates:
 $160.00  per person for a five-hour trip.  

Whole boat, private charters (6 person max):half day - $910.00 

& full day - $1,820.00


Do I need a reservation? 

You do NOT need to “fill” the boat. 

 We’ll go even if there’s only one passenger.

Because we’re limited to just six passengers per trip, the boat ends up being full most every trip.

Some folks make their reservations a year in advance.


How do I make a reservation? 
Call us and see what’s available.  (707) 499-8878. 

   We do not take reservations on line.


Do I need to pay a deposit? 

 The cost:  We will hold the spot(s) for you.

Note: Deposits for private charters can now be held with credit card.


What if I need to cancel? 
If you let us know any time up to 7 days prior to your trip date, you’ll receive your deposit back. 

After that we’ll keep it unless we’re able to fill the vacant spots in the meantime. 

Please remember that after you’ve reserved a spot on the boat,

we’ll be turning away countless other folks who might want to fish at that same time.


Can I pay with a credit or debit card? 
Sorry, no. Just to hold your spot

 We do accept cash, travelers’ checks, money orders and personal checks. 
Make checks payable to 

                                            Captain Tom Lesher

                                         Trinidad Bay Charters                           

                                                     PO Box 592

                                           Trinidad, CA  95570 
          Please jot down the date of your trip on your check. Thanks.


Do you sell Gift Certificates? 
Yes, we do.  Just call to arrange for the details.


What if I have more questions? 
Call us, or email us: 
note: as a precaution, we will not open messages that have attachments, unless you've notified us beforehand.


Updated may, 2023