By: Terrence Berg
LONG RANGE UPDATE: The long-range fleet out of San Diego are now running mostly five to eight-day trips to Cedros, Benitos, and Alijos Rocks region focusing on tuna on the offshore grounds and then coming closure to the islands for yellowtail, wahoo, and grouper. The Independence was at Alijos on Wednesday and reported in with some big yellowtail, grouper to 50 pounds and even a few wahoo. The Shogun at Cedros on Tuesday reported limits of yellowtail for the day for its anglers. Overall, excellent fishing.
SAN DIEGO OFFSHORE: The 1 1/2-day to 2 1/2-day boats have had much slower action over the past week because of winds and changing conditions. This is still a large volume of bluefin tuna along with yellowtail and yellowfin tuna on floating kelp, but this bite was much slower since late last week. Skippers were only reporting from three to 15 bluefin per trip, and while most were in the 40 to 80-pound class, that’s no consolation to the anglers who didn’t land fish. The numbers on yellowtail, and small yellows at that, were about the same. The previous couple of weeks, it had been limits on the yellowtail with two to four tuna per rod in the bag. Most of the skippers say the volume of fish is still there, the bite just needs some better weather and tides. The coming new moon could be that trigger.
CORONADO ISLANDS NEWS: While the yellowtail bite has been tough in recent days, the barracuda action broke wide open on Tuesday. The San Diego out of Seaforth Sportfishing was out with 22 anglers on Tuesday and they landed and they had 165 barracuda, 15 yellowtail, 50 legal calico bass, 25 sand bass, seven whitefish, two sheephead, and two ling cod in an excellent overall bite. On Wednesday, there were 19 anglers and they had only 15 barracuda but added 14 yellowtail, 65 calico bass, and 26 rockfish. The best yellowtail day in the past 10 days was June 10 when 111 yellows were on the deck of the San Diego.
LOCAL ISLANDS UPDATE: The story is about the same for Catalina, San Clemente, and Santa Barbara islands this week. There is a fair bite with a few yellowtail, seabass, and halibut, and steady calico bass action, including a fair number in the keeper range — and that is when the wind isn’t blowing. The Channel Islands boats have also been battling wind, but the white seabass action started turning on Tuesday when the 30 anglers on the Ranger out of Channel Islands Sportfishing landed 126 seabss, seven halibut, and a barracuda on the two-day trip that returned Tuesday evening. On Wednesday, the landing reported 133 seabass. Overnight trips on the Mirage and Seabiscuit carried 16 and eight anglers respectively and both had three-fish limits of seabass (48 and 24). The Mirage anglers also had rockfish limits.
LOCAL INSHORE UPDATE: From San Diego to the Channel Islands, the half- and three-quarter day boats mostly focused on rockfish over the past week, and even that was off and on. The barracuda have been up and down and provide a flurry of good action one day for a hour or so (before the seal home in and ruin the bite). On Wednesday, the New Del Mar out of Marina del Rey Sportfishing was out with 31 anglers on an afternoon half-day and they landed 113 rockfish, 52 barracuda, and one legal sand bass and one legal calico, but Wednesday was the first day in over a week when the barracuda made it to the deck. Most of the boats have been focusing on bottom fish, and several landings have been reporting some very good quality sculpin to five pounds.