Huntington Beach Pier 9/7

evanluck

Well-known member
#1
Arrived at 3:30PM. Mackerel were biting like crazy from mid-pier to the end. Also plenty of good size mackerel being pulled in. People were landing them on sabikis often 2 or more at a time. We were not targeting mackerel but everytime we put a high low or sabiki into the water, the mackerel would jump on the hook. Caught a tiny halibut with a fish finder rig casting out towards the end of the pier on the north side. We were trying to target perch and halibut. No luck on the perch. Mackerel were too interested in the shrimp we were using to keeping the bait in the target zone long enough to catch the halfmoon perch we were interested in. Fished a live smelt with a fish finder rig close to the pier/under the pier towards the end looking for halibut. No bites on that.

Saw a guy fishing in the surf area of the pier pull in 2-3 of the largest corbina I had ever seen. He ended up walking one to the end of the pier and selling it for $10.

Fun afternoon fishing. There was a bigger family with a bunch of kids cheering and chanting every single time their Dad would bring in some mackerel.

We ended up leaving at 6:30PM keeping four mackerel and a smelt to eat for dinner.
 

Ken Jones

Administrator
Staff member
#2
When the mackerel are in an attack mood it's sometimes hard to keep them from grabbing your bait. The same thing used to happen with bonito, sometimes big bonito. I remember going out on the 1/2 day boat "Del Mar" out of Davey's Locker in Newport Beach back in June of 1968. We were seeking out bottom fish mostly for the table and using multi-hook rock cod rigs. Our first stop saw virtually everyone drop their rigs into the water and be hooked up to 3-4 big bonito within seconds. Three to four 5-6 pound bonito put up a fight, even on a rock cod rig, and the deck was a mess when everyone pulled their fish in. We moved slightly and when the second spot prodeuced the same results the skipper in anger said we've got to get away from these boneheads and we headed to a different reef. Nice big bonito. The school was thick with fish and they were hungry.
 

evanluck

Well-known member
#3
When the mackerel are in an attack mood it's sometimes hard to keep them from grabbing your bait. The same thing used to happen with bonito, sometimes big bonito. I remember going out on the 1/2 day boat "Del Mar" out of Davey's Locker in Newport Beach back in June of 1968. We were seeking out bottom fish mostly for the table and using multi-hook rock cod rigs. Our first stop saw virtually everyone drop their rigs into the water and be hooked up to 3-4 big bonito within seconds. Three to four 5-6 pound bonito put up a fight, even on a rock cod rig, and the deck was a mess when everyone pulled their fish in. We moved slightly and when the second spot prodeuced the same results the skipper in anger said we've got to get away from these boneheads and we headed to a different reef. Nice big bonito. The school was thick with fish and they were hungry.
Great story Ken! It is so funny how fish get their reputation. On the pier all the more experienced fishermen are hoping to catch a bonito, then when you get out on a boat and are targeting something else they become a nuisance!

Thanks so much for all your contribution to the fishing knowledge base! You're love of pier fishing and all the information that you've produced has been critical to my girlfriend and I having such great initial success at fishing. We went to a couple freshwater spots and had long suffering days in the hot sun with no fish. Then I remembered fishing on the Huntington Beach pier as a kid. We found this website and the moment we got to the pier we started catching fish. It's been so satisfying catching fish from the pier and cooking delicious meals with them!

Would love to do some stuff on Youtube highlighting this point of view, telling your story and packaging it for the next generation of aspiring pier rats.
 
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