|California Pier Report — July 2014
San Diego County Piers
Imperial Beach Pier – No report this month. How To Get There: From I-5 take the Palm Ave. (Hwy. 75) exit and follow it to where Palm Ave. and Hwy. 75 divide. Follow Palm Ave. to Seacoast Dr., turn left and it will take you right to the pier.
Ocean Beach Pier — It sounds like a mix of fish is showing up including, some days, a few bonito. Pretty steady action on queenfish, some croakers inshore, and a few bass and sharays out at the end. How To Get There: From the north, take I-5 to the Sea World Dr. exit and follow it until it turns off to Sunset Cliffs Blvd. From the south, take I- 5 to the Nimitz Blvd. exit, then follow that road to Sunset Cliffs Blvd. Follow Sunset Cliffs Blvd. to Newport Ave., turn right and follow the road to the pier parking lot.
Crystal Pier – James at the pier’s bait shop, said things have finally broken wide open. A number of shortfin corvina had been caught the morning I called (use live bait) and halibut, mostly shorts, are being taken. The croaker have also finally shown up with good numbers of yellowfin along with a few spotfin. Mackerel are also back, although they are in and out, and bonito have shown some days. He said a giant bat ray was hooked the day prior to the call and quite a few smaller sharks and rays have also been landed. The annual Kid’s Derby at the pier will be held on July 26. How To get There: Take I-5 to Garnet Ave. then take Garnet west to the foot of the pier.
Pepper Park Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From I-5 take the 24th Street off-ramp west to Tidelands Avenue and go left (south) on Tidelands to the end.
Bayside Park Pier — No report, need a reporter. How To Get There: From I-5 take the J Street off ramp and go west. Take J Street to Tidelands Ave., turn right. Take Tidelands to Sandpiper Way, turn right. Take Sandpiper to Bayside Parkway, urn left and follow the road to the park.
Embarcadero Marina Pier — James at the pier’s bait shop (deli) said most of the action has been on bass and mackerel; the bass are fairly steady while the mackerel come and go. When present, good number s of mackerel are being taken. Throw in some jacksmelt and a few sharks and rays and that’s about it How To Get There: From the I-5 south, take the Front Street exit south to Market (just stay on Front Street, it runs into Market), take Market west to Harbor Dr. Turn left on Harbor Dr. and take it to 8th Ave., turn right onto Convention Way (formerly Harbor St.). Follow it a short block to 5th Ave. and the pier. It seems that with the new Convention Center the city is constantly working on these streets near the pier and renaming them; if you get confused remember that the park and pier are immediately to the southwest of the Convention Center. From I-5 North, approaching from the south, take the J Street exit, then go straight, three blocks up to Market, turn left and take it from there.
Ferry Landing Pier (Coronado) – No report, need a reporter! How To Get There: From San Diego, take the Coronado Bay Bridge (Highway 75) to Coronado. Once over the bridge you are on Third Street. Simply follow it to B Avenue, turn right, and follow it to the front of The Old Ferry Landing - the intersection of First Street and B Avenue. The pier sits behind the shops in the complex.
Shelter Island Pier — Dennis at the pier’s bait shop the mackerel are in and out, most days see a couple of legal halibut, and quite a few bat rays are showing up. How To Get There: Take I-5 or I-8 to Rosecrans (Hwy. 209) and go west, turn left at Shelter Island Dr. and follow the road until you see the pier and the entrance to the parking lot.
Oceanside Pier — Ed, at Oceanside Pier Bait & Tackle, says big spotfin croaker are showing up including one that he felt was the largest he’s seen (although it wasn’t weighed). There aren’t a lot of them but the regulars who know what they are doing are daily getting nice fish. Bonito too have made a showing but they are small fish 8-10 inches long and unfortunately too many are being taken by anglers on Sabikis and too many are being kept (ice chests full). Fish and Game has been out but they never seem to show when the bonito are being caught. Mackerel too are present but they are in one day and out the next. It looks like it’s going to be a fun summer. How To Get There: From I-5 take the Harbor Dr. exit off the freeway, follow it and it will wind down to the harbor; where the road splits stay to the right on North Harbor Dr., and follow it to the pier.
Oceanside Harbor Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From I-5 take the Harbor Dr. exit off the freeway, follow it and it will wind down to the harbor; where the road splits stay to the right on North Harbor Dr., and follow it to the pier.
Orange County Piers
San Clemente Pier — Ivan at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, says good numbers of barred surfperch are still available in the shallows (use lug worms) and quite a few corbina are also showing for those using sand crabs (try by the pilings). A little further out some nice-sized spotfin croaker are being taken on fresh mussels, lugworms and, surprisingly, strips of squid. Out at the end it’s mostly sharays—smoothhound sharks, leopard sharks, bat rays and a mixture of other species. Squid and mackerel are the baits for the sharays. How to Get There: From I-5 take any of several exit streets west to El Camino Real, follow it to the center of town, and from there take Del Mar down to the pier.
Dana Harbor Pier — Ivan at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, says anglers are pulling in some nice-sized spotfin croaker (fresh mussels being the best bait) along with some bass (kelp, sand and spotted bay bass). Most bass are being taken on bait but swimbaits may also entice a few. A few small halibut have been taken and increasing numbers of barracuda are showing up. Spoons such as Krocodiles and Kastmasters are usually the main lure for the barriers. How To Get There: The pier is located in the Dana Cove Park area of Dana Point Harbor. From the Pacific Coast Highway take Green Lantern Road south to the harbor, turn left on Cove Road, and follow it to the pier.
Balboa Pier — Our reporter Snookie says, “It has been much better this month at the pier. We haven't gotten any keepers ourselves, but I know of a 30-inch halibut being caught by a friend of mine a week ago. We have been getting some undersized halibut, which in itself is better. Also got bonito. They were about 10 inches which is quite small, but I did take two home to eat, and they were good. Our bait has been very good with perfect sized smelt, herring (Queenfish), baby perch and small Spanish Jacks. We got quite a few White Sea bass this last week up to about 20 inches. They were fun. Also got some nice yellowfin croakers. The water temperature is up to 70 degrees now. Summer is upon us which isn't necessarily good with the amount of tourists and Junior Lifeguards, but even with that the fishing certainly has improved.” How To Get There: From the Pacific Coast Highway take Newport Blvd. which will turn into Balboa Blvd., follow it west to Palm Street. Turn right and follow it to the pier and the adjacent parking lot.
Newport Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From the Pacific Coast Highway take the Newport Blvd. turnoff and proceed west watching for signs directing traffic to the pier. The pier sits at the foot of McFadden Place.
Huntington Beach Pier —Nicole at Let’s Go Fishing (on the pier), said it’s wide open fishing on croaker right now, big spotfins and yellowfins along with good numbers of sargo, all primarily falling to fresh mussels and lug worms. Quite a few small white sea bass have also been taken along with too many small kelp bass. Lizardfish are too plentiful. Some big bat rays have also shown along with small sharks and rays. A big school of BIG bonito was at the pier for a few days but it seems to have moved on. How To Get There: Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) to Huntington Beach and the pier.
Seal Beach Pier — Sergio at Big Fish B&T says it’s the normal species, croakers and surfperch inshore, jacksmelt and a few halibut mid-pier, and an occasional shark and ray. How To Get There: From the Pacific Coast Highway simply take Main St. west and follow it to the pier.
Los Angeles County Piers
Belmont Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From the north take I-405 to the Lakewood Boulevard turnoff, and then go south to 7th Street, turn west (right) until you come to Ximeno Ave. and then turn left. Follow it to Livingston Dr. and go west. You will see signs by Ocean Ave. and Termino Ave. indicating the pier. From the south take the Pacific Coast Highway to 2nd. Street (Westminister becomes 2nd. Street when it crosses PCH), go west, follow to Livingston Dr. Follow it to signs by Ocean Ave. and Termino Ave. indicating the pier and parking lot.
Shoreline Aquatic Park Piers — No report this month. How To Get There: From inland areas take I-710 south and follow it to the Shoreline Drive. From downtown Long Beach, take Pine Avenue south to Shoreline Drive. For the northernmost piers follow Shoreline Avenue west and follow it around the lagoon to where the street ends. For the southernmost piers, follow Shoreline Drive east to the markings for Shoreline Village, continue past the shopping complex, and follow the road out to near the end of the peninsula. You will see the piers.
Cabrillo Pier — No report, we need a reporter. How To Get There: Take the Harbor Freeway (I-110) south; it will turn into Gaffey St. Follow it to 22nd Street and turn left. Follow 22nd St. to Pacific Ave. and turn right. Follow Pacific Ave. to 36th Street and the entrance to Cabrillo Park.
Green Pleasure Pier (Avalon, Catalina Island) – It’s the usual mix of fish —small, mainly illegal kelp bass (almost all under 14 inches), rock wrasse, senorita, opaleye, sheephead, halfmoon and blacksmith. Also expect some mackerel—Pacific mackerel, jack mackerel and possibly a bonito. How To Get There: The trick here is to get to Catalina. Ships and helicopters make the journey several times a day from the Port of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Newport Beach. Information is available on all of these by calling the Avalon Chamber of Commerce on the Pleasure Pier (213) 510-1520 or the Visitor's Information & Service Center (213) 510-2500. Once in Avalon there should be no problem in finding the pier, which is located at the foot of Catalina Avenue.
Cabrillo Mole (Avalon, Catalina Island) – Expect some calico (kelp) bass, Pacific mackerel, opaleye, and the assorted bottom species—sheephead, halfmoon, blacksmith, etc. Remember the new size limits for kelp bass—14 inches minimum length and no more than five bass total. And, the bonito are back; most are smallish sized but they are still fun to catch. How To Get There: The trick is to get to Catalina. Ships and helicopters make the journey several times a day from the Port of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Newport Beach. Information is available on all of these by calling the Avalon Chamber of Commerce on the Pleasure Pier (213) 510-1520 or the Visitor's Information & Service Center (213) 510-2500. Once in Avalon there should be no problem in finding the mole that sits right where most boats disembark.
Redondo Beach Pier – Sunny from Redondo Beach Tackle (on the pier) said anglers are catching a few mackerel and an occasional bonito. How To Get There: From the Pacific Coast Highway, take Torrance Blvd. west to the foot of the pier and the parking lot.
Redondo Sportfishing Pier — Sam, at the pier’s bait and tackle shop, said it’s pretty much the same thing as usual, a lot of small, undersized kelp bass along with a couple of keeper-sized bass (kelp bass and sand bass) that were returned to the water. The usual small perch and perch-like species are under the pier. How To Get There: From the Pacific Coast Highway take Beryl St. west to Harbor Dr. and follow it to the entrance of the Sportfishing parking lot.
Hermosa Beach Pier— It’s mostly small perch and small sharks at this time although mackerel and a few bonito also make an appearance. How To Get There: Take the Pacific Coast Highway (Hwy 1) to Pier Avenue and follow Pier Avenue west to the pier.
Manhattan Beach Pier — Expect a few surfperch inshore along with the usual mix of thornbacks, stingrays and small sharks. Out at the end some mackerel have been showing along with an occasional bonito. How To Get There: From Sepulveda Boulevard, turn west on Manhattan Beach Drive and follow it to the pier.
Venice Pier — Expect a few surfperch inshore along with the usual mix of thornbacks, stingrays and small sharks. Some mackerel and bonito are also showing. How To Get There: Highway 1 to Washington St., turn west and follow Washington St. to the pier.
Santa Monica Pier — Robert at the pier’s bait shop said things are fairly slow. A few mackerel, perch under the pier, and an occasional halibut, most of which are shorts. How To Get There: From I-405 take Santa Monica Blvd. west to Ocean Ave. Turn left, go to Colorado Ave., and turn right onto the pier.
Malibu Pier – Ginny at Wylie’s Bait and Tackle says that the fishing has improved. She’s getting reports of perch being caught inshore, a few croakers, and an occasional halibut. Nothing much is showing on top but shark anglers are seeing an uptick and included are a few threshers. How To Get There: The pier fronts on the Pacific Coast Highway (Hwy 1) so just drive until you see it.
Ventura & Santa Barbara County Piers
Port Hueneme Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From Highway 1 take Hueneme Rd. west until it turns into Port. At Ventura Rd turn left and follow it to Surfside Dr. Turn left again and follow it to the park.
Ventura Pier — Eric at Eric’s Tackle Shop, 2127 East Thompson Blvd, says things are still relatively slow. The shark regulars still aren’t taking many sharks—or rays, which is unusual for this time of the year. Unfortunately the other fish are also slow; it’s mainly a few small perch, small croakers, and an occasional halibut. Mackerel have shown some days but it’s nothing reliable. How To Get There: From Highway 101 take the Seaward Drive exit west to Harbor Drive, turn right and follow it to the pier.
Stearns Wharf — No report this month. How To Get There: From Highway 101 take Castillo St. or State St. west to the beach and follow signs to the pier.
Goleta Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: From Highway 101 take the Hwy. 217/Airport exit. Follow it to Sandspit Rd. and the Goleta Beach Park turnoff. Follow this to the park and the pier.
Gaviota Pier — Steve at the “Snack Shop” says the pier is still closed and there doesn’t seem to be much progress on reopening it. How To Get There: From Highway 101 simply take the Gaviota State Park turnoff.
Support UPSAC! Preserve pier and shore angling in California.