|San Diego County Piers
Imperial Beach Pier – No report this month. We really need a reporter for this pier! 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 — Gui at the pier’s bait shop, reports that anglers are getting tons of mackerel along with lesser numbers of bonito. As for the mackerel, it doesn’t seem to make much difference if it’s during the day or night. Some small white seabass have also shown up and out at the end they continue to pull in some sharks including a few good-sized beasts (although he didn’t know the species). 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 – Pam, at the pier’s bait and tackle shop, said things are about the same — mainly mackerel, croaker and perch. Bonito have been missing but a few sharks have been caught including a thresher last week. Some legal lobsters are also being taken — mainly at night. 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 although there should be a few mackerel and some bass. We 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 although some croakers, bat rays, sharks and an occasional needlefish should be available. We 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 although the mackerel and bass (kelp and sand) should be hitting along with some sharays. We 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) — Need a reporter although bass (a variety) always seem to be around as well as a mix of sharays (mostly round stingrays). 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 it’s mainly mackerel along with a few bass 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, said the crowds and the fish have left! What? I expected to hear that about the crowds but not the fish. Ed says there are still some big spotfin croaker showing inshore, and quite a few thresher sharks have been taken lately at the end (small ones 50-60 pounds), but the mackerel come and go and the bonito left about a week ago. A final note — his opaleye expert continues to pull in nice-sized opaleye but no one else seems to know how to fish for them. Less fish now but at least an uncrowded pier. 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 although some croakers and bass should be available. We 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 — Mitch at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point said there are many, many mackerel along with bonito that come and go. Inshore you’ll get some croakers, yellowfins and spotfins, while out at the end some bat rays and sharks continue to show up. He said a good-sized thresher shark had been caught a couple of days before I called. 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 — Mitch at Hogan's Bait And Tackle, 34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point said quite a few spotted bay bass have been showing up. They’re mainly caught on artificial lures but some are also hitting on baits, i.e., bloodworms. Anglers are also pulling in some bat rays, mostly small ones, along with a few under-sized halibut. 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, “I hoped to have a better catch report this month, but so far the bait is the only thing surpassing our expectations. Now if we could find something that wants the bait. One day last week we had all the Spanish Jacks we could possibly want, but nothing wanted them. Bloodworms are getting the corbina in the surf now. The snaggers are getting lots of mullet. There has been lots of bonito at various times. They are not consistent but when they show up they put on quite a show. Our water is cold so that may also be our problem. Maybe this next week will warm the water up.” 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 — Generally about the same report as at the Balboa Pier. 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 — Alex at the “Let’s Go Fishing B&T” on the pier says most of the action has been on mackerel. A lot of bonito are showing all around the pier but they’re finicky and for the most part unwilling to strike lure or live bait. Some corbina are showing inshore and some sharks out toward the end of the pier. How To Get There: Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) to Huntington Beach and the pier.
Seal Beach Pier — Rada, at Big Fish Tackle, says things have slowed with the exception of mackerel that continue to show in good numbers. Inshore there are some croakers and perch and mid-pier to the gate there are some sharks (but no rays). 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 — Rada at Big Fish Tackle says anglers continue to pull in decent numbers of mackerel along with jacksmelt. On the bottom there have been a few bat rays and shovelnose sharks (guitarfish). 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 but mackerel and white croakers should be available with a cast out from the pier; a few croakers, sargo and perch close in by the rocks. How to Get There: From downtown Long Beach, take Pine Avenue south to Shoreline Drive. For the northernmost pier #1 follow Shoreline Avenue west and follow it around the lagoon to where the street ends. For the southernmost piers #2-#5 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 (San Pedro) — Waiting for an up to date report. September report = Alex from the Rusty Hook (245 N Gaffey St., San Pedro) says the anglers are happy; the bonito showed up and in good numbers. Most are being taken on lures, almost any shiny lures—Kasmasters, Krocodiles, MegaBaits, Assault and Deception lures, etc. Big numbers of mackerel are also showing. The bonito tend to hit only in the morning, the mackerel throughout the day but best in the morning. Add in a few halibut and some sharays—thornbacks, shovelnose sharks (guitarfish), leopard sharks, bat rays etc. and you have a nice mix of fish. Sounds like a good time to visit the pier. 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) – I got a report from Hashem who visited the pier for the lobster opener along with Redkorn and Burger (since the Mole is now closed to lobster). They caught about a dozen keeper lobsters between them opening night so considered it a successful night. They fished a little in the morning and it was the usual, small bass along with a few opaleye and sheephead. 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) — A report from Hashem on 10/1 said he had caught several nice-sized bonito along with a sheephead and a couple of opaleye. Small kelp bass were also in evidence. 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 Redondo Coffee Shop and Bait Shop reported that there are a LOT of mackerel being caught along with smaller number of bonito. Nothing much else. 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 — Jake from Redondo Sportfishing says his office has now moved to down by the boats but he’s still getting pier reports and it’s still mainly bass (mostly small) along with perch and perch-like fish. No bonito or yellowtail have been taken lately. The bad news is that the pier is now scheduled to close around the end of November. 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 this month although mackerel and bonito should be showing up. 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 this month although mackerel and bonito should be showing up. How To Get There: Highway 1 to Washington St., turn west and follow Washington St. to the pier.
Santa Monica Pier—Ricardo, at the piers bait and tackle shop, said most of the recent action has been on mackerel. Bonito were in — but for only about a week. Those fishing under the pier continue to pull in some sargo along with a few opaleye while the sharksters have pulled in a few leopard sharks and gray smoothhound sharks. 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 anglers are really happy. Lots and lots of mackerel as well as quite a few bass, perch and sharks, a combination of leopard sharks and shovelnose sharks (guitarfish). As for the mackerel, she says it is a toss up between Sabiki-rigs and the 1-oz. Deception lures (for those who like to catch them one at a time and enjoy the fight). Then again, fresh-cut mackerel makes good bait for other mackerel and the sharks. 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 there should be mackerel and jacksmelt. 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 — Mike, from the Stearns Wharf bait shop, said anglers are still catching fish. Mostly it’s been mackerel although they come and go; same with the bonito that are in for a couple of days and then gone for a few. Halibut are also available but most are shorts with only a few legal-size fish showing. Lastly, bat rays still show up but now it’s mainly a bite at dusk and into the night hours. 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 — Expect the normal: mackerel mid-pier to the end along with a mix of sharays mainly at night. Cast out to the pipe-reef to the right of the pier and you should get a mix of rockfish (mainly brown rockfish) and a few bass. Inshore expect an occssional croaker and possibly a halibut. 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 (for 3+years). Evidently it’s not a priority for the state. How To Get There: From Highway 101 simply take the Gaviota State Park turnoff down to the beach and pier.