|California Pier Report — September 2008
San Diego County Piers
Imperial Beach Pier – Mike at the Tin Fish at the end of the pier reports things are much the same. Some corbina show up inshore along with a few halibut mid-pier. Mackerel come and go while the shovelnose shark and bat ray action remains fairly steady. 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 — Billy Burns, at the Ocean Beach Pier tackle shop on the pier, says things finally are starting to break. This past week he is finally seeing some good-sized bonito, some keeper-sized white seabass and even some barracuda although most of the barriers are small. Mix in a few corbina inshore and the usual sharks and rays and things are looking up. Billy also continues to offer fishing classes every Friday from 12 noon until 2 PM; call Billy Burns at the bait shop—619.226.FISH (3474)—for details. 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 – Jim at the Crystal Pier (and motel) says a few corbina and sargo have shown up inshore while mackerel remain abundant out at the end. He says yellowtails are cruising through the mackerel but none have been hooked recently. Two small, shortfin corvina were taken during the last week of August on live sardines. Funny story from the recent Kid’s Fishing Derby was the pole that was pulled overboard by a bat ray. A boater saw the pole on top of the water, fought the fish, released it, and then moved over to the pier where the rod was lifted up to the angler. How To Get There: Take I-5 to Garnet Ave. then take Garnet west to the foot of the pier. (A license is required from this pier).
Pepper Park Pier — No report although a few bass and croakers should be hanging around. 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. 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, turn left and follow the road to the park.
Embarcadero Marina Pier — James at JJ’s Sunset Deli (foot of the pier) says things have really slowed down; mainly it’s just a few bass here and there. Not even too many sharks or rays. 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) – Sounds like it’s slow with a few bass and mackerel providing most of the action. 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 – Ed, at Sharkey’s B&T on the pier, says not too much is biting. Mainly it’s a few mackerel that come and go and a few bass on the bottom. Things should be better! 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 — Pam, at Oceanside Pier Bait & Tackle on the pier, says croaker action remains good for both yellowfins and spotfins inshore. Mid-pier to the end is seeing mackerel, some sardines, a few bonito and a few halibut. It ‘s been slow on sharks and rays. 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 — The pier is kicking out some decent croakers and bass, and some decent-sized rays 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 — Sheryl, at Schleppy’s Bait and Tackle at the end of the pier, says fishing’s been good. There been some big spotfin croakers inshore along with some yellowfins. Halibut action is fair with a 33” fish taken the last week in August. At the end it’s a mix of mackerel, bass and the larger sharks and rays. 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 — No report this month. 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, “Talk about a yo-yo fishing month this has been it. One day it is okay the next it is not good at all. We have been having an abundance of sardines all around us, but I believe the fish are full. The bonitos are small most of the time, but we have had some very large ones as well at times. Some have been greater than five pounds. There are lots of mackerel everywhere including into the surf. For us halibut fishermen that's not what we want. We have been getting some halibut. Heard of a keeper being caught, but most of ours have been very undersized. There are some nice yellowfin croakers being caught. Have seen a few small shovelnose guitarfish and the barracudas are about 20 inches long. The water is cool again at 68 degrees compared to the 70’s, which it was earlier. The crowds have thinned out with school starting soon so it is quiet again. The weather has been great on the pier.” 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 about the same as 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 — Nicole, at Let's Go Fishing (on the pier), says the inshore croaker action has slowed but the mid-pier halibut action has improved. She says there are a lot of mackerel and sardine showing up on top along with a few bonito. There’s also been some good action on big leopard sharks and shovelnose sharks (guitarfish). How To Get There: Highway 1 (Pacific Coast Highway) to Huntington Beach and the pier.
Seal Beach Pier — Ron at Big Fish Bait & Tackle. 1780-C. Pacific Coast Hwy, said anglers continue to pull in barred surfperch (ghost shrimp and lug worms) and corbina (mussel and sand crabs) inshore while some halibut are showing mid-pier. There’s also a lot of mackerel out at the end. 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 —Randy, at Paul's Bait and Tackle, 803 South Pacific Ave. in San Pedro, says he’s getting reports of good sargo action inshore and lots of mackerel at the end. 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 — Randy, at Paul's Bait and Tackle, 803 South Pacific Ave. in San Pedro, says the piers are kicking out good numbers of sargo on ghost shrimp along with a few bass, halibut and black croaker. 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 various piers as you drive the road out to the end.
Cabrillo Pier — Randy, at Paul's Bait and Tackle, 803 South Pacific Ave. in San Pedro, says there’s been a lot of halibut (live bait) and bass (plastics) along with a few corbina (bloodworms). He says anglers are also getting halfmoon out at the end by the rocks. But, it’s been slow on top. 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) – Lots of small bass as well as other species are available although space on the pier can be very limited. 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 mix of bass, opaleye, halfmoon and other Catalina pier species are available. The bonito come and go and they’re joined by a few barracuda and sightings of yellowtail. 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 – Just Fishing By Pete. 2427 190th St. Redondo Beach, said that things have been slow at Redondo with the exception of mackerel. 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 — Austin, at Redondo Sportfishing, said it’s mainly been sub-legal bass along with the small perch and senorita 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 – Sounds like a lot of sardines and mackerel are around as well as a few halibut and bass. 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 – Andreas Beck, at the Bohemian Beach Café (end of the pier), reports that the mackerel and sardines continue to be thick while some croakers are showing inshore. Shark and ray action has been slow. He did say some nice bonito (to 5 pounds) and small barracuda showed the third week of August but they seem to have moved on. Maybe they’ll be back? How To Get There: From Sepulveda Boulevard, turn west on Manhattan Beach Drive and follow it to the pier.
Burton Chace Fishing Platform (Marina Del Rey) — Small barracuda and a few halibut are still around. How To Get There: From Lincoln Boulevard turn west on Mindanao Drive and follow it to the park. To reach the dock you must go through the park.
Venice Pier — No report this month. How To Get There: Highway 1 to Washington St., turn west and follow Washington St. to the pier.
Santa Monica Pier — John, at the Santa Monica Pier Bait & Tackle, reports lots of short halibut and white seabass being taken (and released) at the pier as well as some yellowfin croakers inshore. There are also a few bonito showing up but they’ve mostly been small ones. Not much recent action on sharks and rays. Poachers remain too common at night. 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 Wylies Bait and Tackle reports lots of mackerel and too many small halibut. She says a few corbina are being taken in the surf while big bat rays and some thresher sharks are showing at the end. 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 — Sardines and mackerel lead the hit parade with a few halibut and sharays adding variety. 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 — It’s the usual. Some croakers and perch inshore, a few white seabass and halibut show mid-pier to the end, while sharks and rays are out at the end. 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 Stearns Wharf Bait and Tackle, reports good action on sardines and Spanish mackerel (mackerel jack). He says it’s an early 7-11 bite for both. A few short halibut are mixed in for variety. 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— A few halibut are available in the shallows along with some croakers and thornbacks. The end continues to see some mackerel. 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 — Mackerel and sardines are present along with the sharks and rays. How To Get There: From Highway 101 simply take the Gaviota State Park turnoff.
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