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BD Book Review – In The Gray

Capt. Mark Wisch just released the long-awaited second edition of his second book In the Gray — A Private Boaters Guide to Fishing Island Waters. In the latest edition, Wisch provides private boaters with a simple guide to help them catch more white sea bass and other game fish around Catalina Island.

Wisch shares his 40 years of experience fishing Catalina Island throughout the book. At nearly 500 pages, the book is packed with local knowledge and detailed information about how to fish these challenging waters.

“If ever there was an angling destination that separates private boaters who ‘know’ from those who don’t, it’s Catalina,” says Wisch. “The waters around this popular island are often loaded with calico bass, yellowtail, halibut and white sea bass, but they’re nobody’s fools. To find and catch them on a regular basis, it takes knowledge of their habits, understanding of their environments and the ability to read conditions. I’ve put most of what I’ve learned over four decades of fishing Catalina into the pages of this book, to give other private boaters a short cut to their ultimate success.”

And now, six years after it first shocked the angling community with its raw insight into the closely held secrets of fishing island waters, the second edition digs even deeper into the mysteries of fishing and catching the white sea bass.

Mark has spent countless hours on the water in pursuit of white sea bass and shares his knowledge of today’s tackle, the latest techniques and the newest information on seasonal migration patterns.

Each of the book’s sections focuses on a specific set of skills that provide the building blocks needed to master these enigmatic waters. There is an important section dedicated to teaching anglers about the island’s four primary target species, their habits and their habitats — with special attention paid to that “gray ghost” of Catalina, the white sea bass.

Another section goes into great detail about the forces of nature — weather, wind, currents, tides and moon phase — and how they affect fishing. This information will prove highly useful in deciding the “where” and “when” factors of fishing the island.

Many anglers forget how important the boat is to the success equation, so there is a section that covers anchoring techniques, boat positioning tips, drifting and more. Another section helps anglers improve their skills at catching live bait, keeping it alive throughout the day and using it to its full advantage.

Undoubtedly, it’s the last section of In the Gray that will get private boaters most excited as this largest portion of the book details the structure spots around the Island.

Broken down by geographic regions, the entire coast of the island — including the Farnsworth Bank and various wrecks, rocks and hard-bottom areas — is examined in close detail.

In the Gray provides information, descriptions and lat/lon numbers of nearly 500 fishing spots around Catalina — many of them never before shared with other fishermen.

The impending MLPA closures will affect some of the spots listed so check the Department of Fish and Game regulations carefully.

“The guys who succeed consistently at Catalina are the ones who fish often, fish hard and really put in the time to learn the island,” says Wisch. “I’ve literally spent years writing this book, to create a tool that every angler can use to shorten the learning curve. This new edition delivers more pictures, stories and on-the-water insight. Whether you’re a novice who wants to hit the island for the first time or a regular who wants to take their game up to the next level, this book is meant for you.”

The book retails for $32.95. To pick up your copy, visit pacificedgetackle.com.