View Full Version : Saltwater in a Float Tube?

08-08-2005, 09:38 PM
Is there a place within a couple hours of the Bay area which has waters calm enough for a float tube? I love fishing the lakes for trout and crappie and would love to fish the big briney if I found a place that was safe. Some protected cove or bay perhaps?

I made the mistake of tubing Santa Cruz a few weeks ago in the kelp beds and and was lucky to walk away with lacerations on my hands, arms, legs when waves took me for a ride into the rocks. :o I also lost one of my Forcefins which means I'll have to use my crappy caddis flippers for a while. Anyone know of a place where I can just buy 1 flipper?

I've seen a website of a guy who nails 'buts from his tube but his spots are in Socal. Any help would be appreciated.

08-08-2005, 10:08 PM
Brave soul you are. One time I tubed at Spaulding, almost froze, blew halfway across the lake, and thought I might die...not doing it in the big pond, but good luck! ;D

08-09-2005, 06:47 AM
If you do your homework it's possible inside Bodega Harbor. Just pick a day and time with little to no tide change. I've seen people do it before, but I wouldn't recommend it. They obviously knew what they were doing and were out there when there was almost no change in tides at all.

I would also stay in the "back bay" by Lucas Wharf to avoid all the boat traffic - especially on week-ends. There's halibut and flounder, as well as leopard sharks, rays, smelt, herring, and sometimes mackeral. I think it'd be a blast out there with an ultra-lite going for smelt.

08-09-2005, 06:49 AM
Hey, you're in luck! This week-end has the kind of tides you'd be looking for.


08-09-2005, 07:55 AM
There are a lot of people who do this in Southern Ca.
The thing you have to be careful about is breaking waves. If you float and you are hit by a breaking wave you get to go for a ride!
Here area a couple places to think about...
McAbee Beach in Pacific Grove, San Carlos Beach in Monterey,
Russian Gulch, Stillwater Cove in Carmel

Basically, you are looking for places you can get out into the kelp forests without having to go through surf.

Here are a couple of web sites that offer info.

My recommendation, get a kayak...safer, faster, and a better fishing platform. check www.craigslist.org for a used kayak...

Fish On!


08-09-2005, 07:55 AM
I also have thought about tubing salt. One of my dreams is to launch at Moss Landing and head into the slough around May or June for a big bat ray or leopard shark. What a ride that would be! ;D
The only thing stopping me is how to not get rolled in the surf. I haven't found a "safe" place besides Moss Landing.

08-09-2005, 08:37 AM
hmmm, sharks and flippers :o Have fun :P

08-09-2005, 11:10 PM
Ive tubed richardsons bay , lots of bat rays and leopard sharks , fish pretty close to shore , squid on a sliding sinker sturgeon rig , on the bottom , try not to move the bait to much , 10# mushroom anchor works well . also good perch when in season . Good firm ground to launch and parking off of seminary drive.Leopard sharks can pop a tube , so try to keep them away from you ,I use a long gaff to remove hooks and release ,

08-10-2005, 06:42 AM
For saltwater tube info go to http://baytubers.com/

Fish King
08-10-2005, 12:12 PM
I wouldn't even think about going out in a float tube in the ocean. You will look like one fat seal swimming on the water. Sharks will just love that. :o

08-10-2005, 12:27 PM
Shark donuts ;D

Remember, when you enter the water you enter the food chain.

08-10-2005, 03:00 PM
Ive seen too many sharks near stinson and and Marin coast from my skipjack , wouldnt reach in the water for 20$ bill , but inside the bay in shallows pretty safe. [I tell myself that anyway]

08-10-2005, 03:13 PM
I have hear of people doin' it before, mostly fishing fishtraps fo halibut and flounder. From what I read they were fishing faitly close to shore, in 7-20' of water here's some info:


HSU Steelie

08-10-2005, 08:27 PM
There are a lot of days when the surf is calm at School House beach north of Bodega. It has a real light shore pound about a foot to 18 inches high. You only need to get out 10 yards and your past it. If you upend coming in, your on the beach, but it's not really that bad.

Lots of rocks out front and there are fish there.

08-10-2005, 10:13 PM
get one of these rigs....
if a sharks sees it he just dies laughing....
and you just keep fishing.... ;) :D ;D


pic from craigslist....it was a lost in alameda
the guy in the pic found it...
makes you wonder.mmmmmmmmmmmm
what happened to the fisherman......lol

08-10-2005, 10:26 PM
is that the new Bayliner?

08-15-2005, 11:15 PM
I was fishing New Brighton for perch one day 2 years when I saw a guy carrying a float tube up the hill. The cove right there is very calm and there is some kelp within a short swim and I know that they catch halibut and stripers in close to shore - less than 15 ft of water.

Not sure I'd want to be in a tube with all the smileys though.

08-16-2005, 02:31 PM
i don't know about the floating thing, but you could float in tomales bay on a slack tide between dawn and maybe 10:30 a.m. and drift for buts near hog island. there's always tons of kayakers in the bay and i've never seen one of them fishing. i highly doubt the mean sharks make it that far down the bay, but i woudln't guarantee that either. lots of leapard and brown nose sharks - and recently caught a behemoth angel shark (which looked like a 40# halibut until we got it to the surface ... heartbreaker).

08-16-2005, 10:42 PM
Hey Guys,
Thanks for all the responses and suggestions. I might try and check one out one of the spots. Stillwater cove perhaps. Like the sound of the name. :)

Sharks is one thing I have NOT taken into consideration. I was reading on another website about how attractive a float tuber would look to a shark; webbed fins, bleeding fish, throwing out bait, and looking like a meat bobber.

After my stint in Santa Cruz the next time I go out I'd like to go out with a partner. Anyone down for some saltwater tubin'?

08-17-2005, 12:45 PM
WTF...that is a redneck boat if I ever saw one !!!

dude you are asking for trouble flot tubing in the ocean what are you thinking ??? ??? ??? ???

why bother all the trouble you can get in is it worth it ??? ??? ??? :-[ :-X :-/

08-17-2005, 03:35 PM
Sharks is one thing I have NOT taken into consideration. I was reading on another website about how attractive a float tuber would look to a shark; webbed fins, bleeding fish, throwing out bait, and looking like a meat bobber.

Seriously man, Along the Sonoma Coast there are GREAT WHITE SHARKS..........