For the last few years my Dad, Godfather and I have hired Captain Bryan Brawner, with Crystal Beach Charters as our East Bay Guide. This trip is basically a little tourney between the three of us with the trash talk starting months in advance. There are two categories that can be won; "biggest" and "the most". On May 6th we left the dock with both artificial baits and 2 quarts of live shrimp. We arrived at our first location right at daylight and the tourney was on. My dad had won the derby the last time and reminded of us of that often. He and I we're throwing live shrimp under a popping cork and my Godfather and Captain Bryan we're chunking plastics. It didn't take long for me to hook up on what appeared to be a 5lb trout, which unfortunately came unbuttoned at the boat. As the sun got hotter, so did the fishing. The shrimp appeared to be the bait of choice as it was catching a speck dang near every cast. We we're fishing over a reef and Captain Bryan explained that the big girls should be "out and about" due to them currently spawning. We landed several nice specks but I had yet to hook up with anything that would take the "biggest speck prize". My Dad was currently in 1st with a nice 5 1/2lb-6lb speck. I casted out and popped the cork a couple of times and it sank. I set the hook and could tell that the fish had serious weight. The fish began taking drag but the hook came loose. I re-baited and casted back in the same area. I let the bait settle and popped the cork a time or two. The cork again disappeared under water and I set the hook. Immediately, It was apparent that the fish was big. The drag screamed as I attempted to get the fish closer. The 'back and forth' battle continued on for what seemed like 20 minutes. I was finally able to get the fish close to the boat as my Dad and Godfather we're trying to convince me that I had a hardhead or gafftop. As the fish surfaced, I realized that it was the biggest speck I had ever seen. She still had a lot of fight but I could tell she was hooked good in the corner of her mouth. I started hand feeding line so she would play herself out. Finally the fight was coming to an end and Captain Bryan netted her. My previous best trout was 5 lbs and 23". This one measured 28.5" and weighed 8 1/4 lbs. To say I was excited would be understatement. We continued catching specks for the next couple of hours. I would estimate that we probably caught 60 specks that day. As the day ended, it appeared that my Dad would be handing over the title to me. Winner doesn't get anything more than just bragging rights, which is good enough for me. I highly recommend Captain Bryan if you're in need of a guide. He has became the referee of our tourney and even engages in the friendly trash talk. He's very knowledgeable about the Bay and seasonal patterns. He definitely aims to please his clients to ensure you have a good trip. So the next time you're thinking about hiring a guide, Give Captain Bryan a shot. Below are a couple of pictures from that day.