|October 2016 Fishing Report, SoCal (#219)
San Diego County Piers
Imperial Beach Pier – Expect some mackerel and possibly some bonito but action on other species has slowed. 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 — Shirley at the pier’s bait shop, reports that the fishing has been really good with a variety of species. She says there are still a lot of mackerel and some bonito and they are there just about every day. Lately, anglers have also been getting some sheephead one of which went over 20 pounds. In addition, anglers out at the end continue to pull in some sharks and rays including a 5 foot, 5 inch 7-gill shark the day before I called. When fishing inshore expert some yellowfin croakers and an occasional sargo while fishing further out on the bottom should yield up some small croakers, small rockfish and some calico bass. She’s waiting to see what the opener of the lobster season yields (opening at 12:01, November 1). 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 – Randy at the Crystal Pier B&T (on the pier) says fishing has really slowed down. Anglers do continue to catch fair numbers of mackerel and are seeing quite a few barred surfperch inshore but not much else is showing except for a few small croakers. The hot summer action seems to be over. 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, need a reporter. 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 — No report, need a reporter. 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) – Expect a variety of fish with small bass— kelp, sand, and spotted bay bass leading the hit parade. Cast into the deeper waters for some rays and sharks. 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 Borlek from the pier’s bait shop says most of the action has been on mackerel but he’s also seen some bonito and halibut 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 the Oceanside Pier Bait and Tackle says things have slowed. There is still a good mackerel bite but the bonito come and go and although some croakers, both yellowfins and spotfins, continue to be caught the numbers are way down from mid-summer. He says there are a lot of fishermen but not too many fish. He did add that one of his locals with the know how continues to pull in good-sized opaleye but very few people even know they are there. 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, need a reporter. 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 — Spencer at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, says things have quieted a little. Most of the reports he’s getting mention inshore yellowfin croaker and perch while out at the end it’s mostly rays and sharks with quite a few leopard sharks showing up. There is some action on mackerel but it’s not exactly hot action. 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 — Spencer at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, said he’s not getting many reports. The main fish seem to be a variety of perch along with small bass—calicos, barred and bay bass. He says there are a few mackerel, generally in the morning or at night. 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 water is cooler than last year at this time. It is running about 66 to 69 degrees. I think the fish want it warmer. We do have a lot of bait all around the pier, which includes smelt, sardines, Spanish Jacks, anchovies (pinheads). We have had a lot of bonito this month. Some have been nice-sized, but right now they tend to be smaller. There are lots of mackerel as well. The halibut have been very small, but easy to catch in the surf. Out about midway there have been some thresher sharks which are always fun to catch. One day about a week ago the bonito came in fast and furious. We were fishing the middle tee. All you had to do was put a bait in the water and the bonito were there instantly. They are more selective at the moment. Yesterday I caught a 14-inch Spanish Jack on my snag line. He went home for supper with me. Yes, they are good eating, except we don't usually get them that big. We are all looking forward to cooler days hopefully soon.” 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 — Usually pretty similar to Balboa. 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 — Cody at “Let’s Go Fishing” on the pier says things have slowed. Bonito are still hitting fairly decent but other species have gone absent. The normal inshore surf fishing for perch and croakers in particular has gone dead. Meanwhile, only a few sharays have been taken (a couple of small threshers). Sound like winter is approaching. How To Get There: Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) to Huntington Beach and the pier.
Seal Beach Pier — The pier is still closed due to the recent fire. 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 — Not much other than mackerel and a few croakers and small halibut. 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 although mackerel, perch, and bass should be available. 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, 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, mostly illegal-size kelp bass (almost all under 14 inches), rock wrasse, senorita, opaleye, sheephead, halfmoon and blacksmith. 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, opaleye, and the assorted bottom species—sheephead, halfmoon, blacksmith, etc. Remember the size limits for kelp bass—14 inches minimum length—and no more than five bass total. The bonito action has picked up and it’s good-sized fish. 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 at the pier’s bait shop says mackerel are the main fish being caught (as usual) and a few bonito continue to show. 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 says about all that is biting are the normal small-sized calico (kelp) bass and the perch and perch-like species under the pier. No yellowtail this month. 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 — No report buy expect some mackerel mid-pier to the end, a few croakers inshore and an occasional halibut and sharay. How To Get There: Take the Pacific Coast Highway (Hwy 1) to Pier Avenue and follow Pier Avenue west to the pier.
Venice Pier — No report buy expect some mackerel mid-pier to the end, a few croakers inshore and an occasional halibut and sharay. How To Get There: Highway 1 to Washington St., turn west and follow Washington St. to the pier.
Santa Monica Pier — It sounds most of the action is on mackerel although action has been slow. 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 anglers are still getting a lot of mackerel and though a few bonito have been reported, the emphasis is on a few. Some halibut are also being reported, most are shorts but a few legals are also in the mix. Last but not least are some sharks and rays, including 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 although this is typically a good pier for mackerel. 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 — No report this month. 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, from the Stearns Wharf bait shop, said that things are a little slow although the mackerel are still around as well as some bonito (1-2 pounders). Not much on the bottom excepting bat rays. The threshers were hitting until mid-September but seem to have slowed 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 — Waiting for a report. 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 — The pier remains closed. How To Get There: From Highway 101 simply take the Gaviota State Park turnoff.