"Fish on!" By far these are the two most favorite words that any angler wants to hear. It doesn't even have to be their own pole that has started to jump and bend. The excitement of watching another angler land a big catch is just about as exciting as landing one yourself. Fishing's that way. It's not a competitive sport, unless you're participating in a fishing derby, so cheering on a fellow angler is more than an acceptable behavior.
I think the main reason for this is that every angler can tell you stories about the days they spent with lines in the water, and never got a single bite. But, they can also tell you stories about the days they landed the big one, or caught more fish than they could keep. As an angler myself, trust me when I say both of those types of days are far better when they are spent in the company of other people trying to do the exact same thing you are; catch fish.
Plus, you've probably heard the saying, "A bad day fishing is always better than a good day working."
So Where Are The Fish?
But what if you've never fished before? Let's say you decide to become a fisherman, or fisherwoman, if you prefer. You can go to the local sporting goods store, buy a rod and a reel, a tackle box, lots of hooks, spools of line, bobbers and weights, and of course a license. (Unless you're under the age of 16, you're going to need a license before you put your line in the water.) Maybe you also get one of those fancy vests with all the pockets that you've seen fishermen wearing on TV or in the movies. What's next?
Well, you have two questions. Where do you plan to fish? And what type of fish do you want to catch? Let's take a look at just a few of the options available in Oakley.
Antioch/Oakley Regional Shoreline
You can find this location by driving to the north end of Bridgehead Road. This park offers a large parking area, drinking water stations, picnic tables, barbecues, restrooms, and a fish cleaning station. It also has a 550-foot pier, providing plenty of room to fish without getting your lines tangled with another angler. Depending on the season, you can find striped bass, catfish, Sacramento pike, sturgeon, steelhead, and even salmon in these waters. The park district also maintains several wind screens along the pier, providing some shelter from the elements during the colder months. There is even a four-and-a-half acre landscape meadow area, so it makes a great place to bring the whole family. The pier is available twenty-four hours a day, 365 days a year.
Big Break Regional Shoreline
Travel a bit upstream and you'll find the Big Break Regional Shoreline. Though smaller than the Antioch-Oakley Regional Shoreline, this park offers quite a bit more. Walking trails, Visitor Center, Sand Play area, a kayak launch, picnic tables, and public restrooms, too. Fishing from the 100-foot fishing/observation pier may be less successful, if you have a kayak or canoe and want to head out into the water a bit, you can try your luck with largemouth bass, striped bass, white catfish, bluegill, sunfish, and sturgeon.
With all of the activities available at the Big Break Shoreline, this is definitely a great park to bring the whole family – dogs included! Dogs are only allowed on the trails and must be leashed at all times. Also, this pier is only open during the hours that the park is open, so check their website.
What Comes Next?
As you gain more experience fishing, and perhaps make a friend or two who also love to fish, you may hear of other spots in the area that are open for fishing. Truth is, anywhere you find that is accessible to open water, unless there is a sign posted that prohibits fishing, could be a place you can fish from. The issue is, there may not be any fish in the water, or you might have to enter private land in order to access the spot, so be aware of where you are, or stick to the spots where other anglers gather.
Once you've picked your spot, all that's left is to decide which type of fish you're going to try and catch. Keep in mind that just because a certain type of fish is listed as frequenting a specific fishing spot, doesn't mean they are always there. Your best bet is to check a local fishing report, such as this one on the website of Delta Fishing Charters. These reports generally tell you which fish are biting, where they are being caught, what time of the day they are active, and what type of bait or lure they are being caught on.
This information can definitely increase your chances of catching fish, versus just fishing. Of course, you can always get information from some of the local bait shops, too, such as Hook, Line and Sinker, Dan's Delta Outdoors, or Gotcha Fish Bait & Tackle. These are also perfect spots to pick up a new rod & reel, lures, bait, or whatever else you might need to spend the day outdoors at your favorite fishing spot.
Cypress Self Storage is a Great Catch!
When you need a place to store all of your fishing tackle or fishing derby trophies, Cypress Self Storage, Oakley's newest self Storage facility currently under construction, is always ready to serve. Stop by and take a look at the wide range of storage options we have for you! Our professional staff are trained to help you select the best one for your needs! (We expect to open for business soon.)