APRIL WINDS: The old fisherman’s adage about April being a windy month held true much of the past few days and the wind is expected to continue through the weekend. Most sportboats have been in since late Sunday (April 23) due to winds to 40 knots or more and 8- to 9-foot swells. This is not fun fishing weather, even for the big sportboats. As a result, most of the boats — especially the offshore and island boats — have been dockside this week.
SAN DIEGO BLUEFIN: Before the winds started hammering the local ocean bite, the bluefin tuna action for the San Diego fleet had continued and more big fish were showing in this bite, with more fish over 60 pounds and the average still 40-plus. The yellowtail are still mostly smaller-grade fish to 8 pounds, and but the offshore bonito are 5 to 15 pounds.
Pacific Queen returned from a 1.5-day trip on April 24 with 31 anglers, and while the trip produced only four bluefin as the weather soured, they were all from 60 to 110 pounds, with two topping that 100-pound mark. There was also a 116-pound opah landed on this trip. The April 23 trip with 34 anglers produced three bluefin and 110 yellowtail in the three to 8-pound range.
Relentless and Old Glory, both out of H&M Landing, ran 1.5-day trips on April 23. The 19 anglers on Relentless had just two bluefin tuna, while the 30 anglers on Glory landed one bluefin and 127 yellowtail.
Prowler, out of Fisherman’s Landing, had 23 anglers on its April 23 overnight trip and landed 115 yellowtail. On its April 22 overnight, 29 anglers landed 17 yellowtail and 15 bonito. Tribute out of Seaforth Sportfishing was on an overnight trip with 19 anglers on April 23 and landed one bluefin, 35 yellowtail, and 34 bonito. Oceanside 95 out of Helgren’s Sportfishing in Oceanside had 35 anglers on its overnight trip April 22 and landed two bluefin and two yellowtail.
Liberty, the three-quarter-day boat out of Fisherman’s Landing, had 23 anglers on its April 23 trip and landed 35 bluefin and 85 bonito. The April 22 trip with 44 anglers produced two bluefin and 15 bonito. The three-quarter-day boat Mission Belle out of Point Loma had 13 anglers on April 24 and managed just nine yellowtail in roughening seas. The April 23 trip with 14 anglers returned with limits of 28 bluefin and 40 bonito. Malihini out of H&M Landing had 31 anglers on its April 23 three-quarter-day trip and landed two bluefin and 82 bonito. San Diego out of Seaforth Sportfishing had 35 anglers on its April 24 three-quarter-day and landed seven bluefin. Its Sunday trip with 21 anglers produced five bluefin and 105 bonito.
LOCAL ISLANDS UPDATE: Wind was hammering even the inside of Catalina Island Monday with 40-knot winds really hammering what had been good fishing. Clemente and Santa Barbara islands saw even worse conditions on April 23. Before this winds got bad, however, the bite was pretty good.
Thunderbird out of Davey’s Locker had 29 anglers on its April 23 overnight trip and landed 13 yellowtail and one white sea bass. The April 22 trip with 30 anglers, in much better condtions, produced 31 yellowtail, 84 sheephead, 54 keeper calico bass, 47 rockfish and two barracuda. Toronado out of Pierpoint Landing had 21 anglers on its overnight April 24 trip and landed 13 yellowtail, 41 keeper calicos, 23 rockfish, seven whitefish and six perch. The April 23 trip with 23 anglers returned with 12 yellowtail, 39 whitefish, 34 sheephead, 12 calico bass and 10 perch.
ROCKFISH SOLID: The rockfish boats from Orange County north up the coastline continue to return with good scores of bottom fish, and the nearshore boats have been a little protected from the brunt of the winds in recent days.
New Del Mar out of Marina del Rey ran out of a half-day trip on April 26 and the 19 anglers managed to get 140 rockfish and three whitefish. The April 24 trip with 25 anglers produced 200 rockfish, 12 whitefish and four sculpin.
The northern boats running out of Ventura and Santa Barbara landings have also had tough conditions with most boats in since April 22, but Patriot out of Patriot Sportfishing in Avila Beach had 13 anglers on an April 26 half-day and managed 47 rockfish, four lingcod and two red snapper. Up in Morro Bay, Fiesta out of Virg’s Landing had 11 anglers on its April 26 half-day and they caught 55 mixed rockfish, 50 red snapper and five lingcod.
INSTRUCTIONAL CHARTERS: 976-TUNA offers instructional charters throughout the season. While all of the April and May trips are booked, the next available trip is a two-day aboard Thunderbird out of Davey’s Locker leaving June 11. The early-booking price is just $275 (normal price is $400). These trips are held from early spring through fall, offering advice to beginning or veteran anglers and on-the-water teaching of techniques for different saltwater species. For more information, check on 976-TUNA.com or call 562-352-0012 for details.
Southern California: Virg’s Sportfishing, Morro Bay, 805-772-1222; Patriot Sportfishing, Avila Beach, 805-595-7200; Sea Landing, Santa Barbara, 805-963-3564; Harbor Village Sportfishing, Ventura, 805-658-1060; Channel Islands Sportfishing Center, Oxnard, 805-985-8511; Hookís Landing, Oxnard, 805-382-6233 (Port Hueneme Sportfishing has merged with Channel Islands Sportfishing); Malibu Pier Sportfishing, 310-328-8426; Marina Del Rey Sportfishing, Marina del Rey, 310-822-3625; Redondo Sportfishing, Redondo Beach, 310-372-2111; Rocky Point Fuel Dock (skiff rentals for King Harbor), Redondo Beach, 310-374-9858; 22nd Street Landing, San Pedro, 310-832-8304; L.A. Waterfront Sportfishing, San Pedro, 310-547-9916; Long Beach Sportfishing, Long Beach, 562-432-8993; Pierpoint Landing, Long Beach, 562-983-9300; Marina Sportfishing, Long Beach, 562-598-6649; Newport Landing, Newport Beach, 949-675-0550; Daveyís Locker, Newport Beach, 949-673-1434; Dana Wharf Sportfishing, Dana Point, 949-496-5794; Helgren’s Sportfishing, Oceanside, 760-722-2133; Fisherman’s Landing, San Diego, 619-221-8500; H&M Landing, San Diego, 619-222-1144; Seaforth Landing, San Diego, 619-224-3383; Point Loma Sportfishing, San Diego, 619-223-1627; Islandia Sportfishing, San Diego, 619-222-1164.
Mexico Landings: Sergio’s Sportfishing, Ensenada, 011-526-178-2185; San Quintin Sportfishing, San Quintin, 011-526-162-1455.
YOUR FISHING REPORTS
Please feel free to send your freshwater or saltwater fishing reports and fishing photos to Jim Matthews, Outdoor News Service, at email@example.com and the information will be included in the weekly report. If you have questions or comments, please call Matthews at 909-887-3444.