|California Pier Report — October 2014
San Diego County Piers
Imperial Beach Pier – No report this month although bonito and mackerel should be making an appearance. 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 — Rosalie at the pier’s bait shop reports that the mackerel and bonito continue to hit in good numbers. No reports of dorado this month but apparently the fishing is still good and the number of anglers reflect that fact. Apparently locals are getting ready for the lobster opening. 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 – Pamela at the pier’s bait shop reports mackerel and bonito but not too many fish on the bottom. A 23” and 21” halibut were taken but the flatties are few and far between. She says a big leopard shark was landed. 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 is on mackerel although some bonito have also shown up and bass continue to be taken on the bottom. 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! However, mackerel should be available on top as well as smallish-sized bass and a few halibut on the bottom. 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 and a few bonito have shown. 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 — Bill, at the Oceanside Pier Bait & Tackle, says there’s tons of mackerel as well as some (small) bonito mid-pier to the end. Anglers have reported seeing yellowtail but none have been landed while a black (giant) sea bass was hooked before it stripped the angler’s reel of line. Inshore, a few croakers are still showing while shark anglers continue to pull in a few thresher sharks and leopard sharks. 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 — Forrest at Angler’s Tackle (on North Coast Hwy.) reports that most of the action has been on yellowfin croaker, small perch and jacksmelt. He said a few opaleye are available by the rocks and stingrays are plentiful on the sandy bottom but not much else. 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 anglers continue to pull in good numbers of mackerel and bonito mid-pier to the end (use Sabiki’s, Kastmasters, etc.) while inshore, anglers continue to pull in some yellowfin croaker and perch. Big bat rays and leopard sharks have been taken out toward the end of the pier. 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 most of the action has been on spotfin croaker by anglers using lugworms or fresh mussels. Mix in a few bass and an occasional jacksmelt or barracuda (at night) and that’s about it. 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, "The fishing is off and on. There is lots of bait around, so much so it may be the reason the catching is as slow as it is. We are getting bonitos that do vary in size. Some are way too small, and others are big. The best time for catching has been in the early morning. Don't know about evening, but it may be good too. At least it is cooler on the pier as the breezes have been blowing enough.There are some small halibut around, and last week a 28-incher was caught plus he lost another big one right after that. There are a lot of white seabass being caught, but then again they are too small. Saw the snaggers catch some mullet today, but they are small too. There's been some thornbacks caught and some shovelnose guitarfish of various sizes. The big water is gone for now, but the water is very clear. I really thought the yellowtail would show up with all the Spanish jacks around, but so far they haven't. The water is running about 68 degrees lately." 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 — Karen at Let’s Go Fishing (on the pier), said a lot of bonito and mackerel are being taken out toward the end of the pier although most are on the smallish side. Small sand sharks and lizardfish are common on the bottom while spotfin croaker and perch show up inshore. How To Get There: Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) to Huntington Beach and the pier.
Seal Beach Pier — Rod at Big Fish B&T says a lot of mackerel are being taken although the bonito action’s been slow. Expect some croakers and perch inshore (on fresh mussels, bloodworms or lugworms). 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 although I imagine both mackerel and bonito should be available. 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 bonito and mackerel—Pacific mackerel, jack mackerel. 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, bonito, 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. 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 the mackerel bite has been good and that’s what anglers are concentrating on. A few schools of bonito have shown, including a school of good-sized, 4-6 pound fish the other day, but they were gone about as fast as they showed up. 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 — Scott, at the pier’s bait and tackle shop, said it’s the same ole, same old, it’s mostly kelp bass and most of them are sublegal, under 14-inch size fish. A few bonito are showing (2 ½ -4 pounds) but not in any great numbers while the usual small fry 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— Expect some mackerel and bonito and mid-pier to the end. How To Get There: Take the Pacific Coast Highway (Hwy 1) to Pier Avenue and follow Pier Avenue west to the pier.
Venice Pier — Expect some mackerel and bonito and mid-pier to the end.
How To Get There: Highway 1 to Washington St., turn west and follow Washington St. to the pier.
Santa Monica Pier — Expect the usual (a few croakers inshore and perch under the pier) as well as some mackerel and bonito. 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 the water’s been rough and the pier was closed for a couple of days but normalcy has returned. She says there’s a lot of mackerel, a few bass (unusual for the pier), some jacksmelt, lizardfish, and small perch, probably walleyes. She says a few yellowfin croakers have been taken inshore and she has heard reports of spotfin croaker (which are rarely seen along that stretch of beach). 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 — Still closed. 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 have been dead with the exception of a few baitfish—mackerel and jacksmelt. He says the “sharkers” are getting zilch. 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 — Frank at the pier’s bait shop reports the best fishing for mackerel this year while good numbers of bonito are also making an appearance. A few legal-size halibut have been taken; apparently munching on the lizardfish and other baitfish. 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 — Frank from the Stearns Wharf bait shop reported he heard of a good sized soupfin shark being taken one night as well as a couple of leopard sharks. Mackerel and bonito should be available. 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 (it’s managed by the state). How To Get There: From Highway 101 simply take the Gaviota State Park turnoff.
Last edited by Ken Jones on Mon Nov 03, 2014 11:22 am; edited 1 time in total