By: Terrence Berg
NOT EVEN CLOSE TO OVER: The cool storm front that passed through Southern California didn’t slow the fishing action on pelagic species, with water temperatures dropping only a degree or two but staying unseasonably high for this time of year. The bite is far from over for the year. On Monday this week there was another wahoo caught just six miles off Dana Point.
SAN DIEGO YELLOWFIN AND DORADO: The dorado and yellowfin tuna action remains excellent for the overnight to three-day boats running out of San Diego, with limits of dorado and limits or near limits of tuna the norm. In fact, there are still fish within 3/4-day and one-day fishing, but the interest has waned and loads are light. No one is even running these shorter trips after the dorado or yellowfin any more. While fears of bad weather kept many boats in over the weekend, the action before and since has held up. The New Lo An out of Point Loma Sportfishing was on a 1 1/2-day trip on Friday with 12 anglers and they had 24 dorado (limits) and 26 yellowfin. The Condor out of Fisherman’s Landing, also on a 1 1/2-day trip on Friday, had 23 anglers who landed limits of dorado (46) along with 12 yellowfin. The Tribute out of Seaforth Sportfishing returned from a three-day trip on Sunday and the 21 anglers on board had 315 yellowfin (limits), 84 dorado, 60 yellowtail, and three halibut.
YELLOWTAIL AND BONITO ALL ALONG THE COAST: The yellowtail remain all along the coast and at the islands in excellent numbers, and schools of bonito are frequently in the same water. These are mostly quality yellowtail with schools of fish running from 12 to 18 pounds or bigger grade fish from 25 to 35 pounds. The bonito are mostly three to five pounds with some fish over 10 pounds. The San Diego day-fleet continues to see good action at the Coronado Islands, but the yellowtail are all along the coast in the pockets of clear water – including La Jolla, San Onofre, Huntington Beach, the Horseshoe Kelp, and Redondo Beach. The Sea Trek out of Helgren’s Landing in Oceanside, was on a three-quarter day trip with 12 anglers on Sunday and they landed 56 yellowtail, seven red snapper, and six bocaccio. The Patriot out of Newport Landing was out with 18 anglers on Tuesday this week and they landed 24 yellowtail and 17 bonito, in addition to 42 red snapper, 23 rockfish, four sheephead, and one sculpin. The Enterprise out of Long Beach Marina Sportfishing was out Sunday with 17 anglers on a three-quarter day trip and they caught 35 yellowtail, 85 bonito, 35 sheephead, one sand bass, one ling cod, and one sculpin. At Catalina, the Pursuit out of 22nd Street Landing was there Tuesday with 24 anglers who landed 22 yellowtail, 127 bonito, 30 rockfish, 24 whitefish, eight sheephead, and five calicos.
RAMPING UP ROCKFISH ACTION: Some skippers are switching to rockfish simply because of angler demand. The El Dorado, out of Long Beach Marina Sportfishing, made two overnight trips to San Nicolas Island this past weekend. Each trip produced limits of rockfish, lingcod, and sheephead for every angler on board. There were also a lot of bonus whitefish and some bonito. Up in the Channel Islands, the yellowtail and bonito bite did slow a little because of the storm front, but the rockfish action didn’t slow at all. The Aloha Spirit was on full-day trips Monday and Tuesday this week. On Monday, 20 anglers had limits of rockfish (200), limits of ling cod (40), along with 11 whitefish, nine bonito, eight sheephead, and a mako shark. On Tuesday, the 23 anglers returned with 230 fishfish, six lings, and a threasher shark.
LOBSTER SEASON UPDATE: The lobster action has been fair along the Los Angeles and Orange County coast, but better at the islands and out of San Diego. San Diego-based boats are averaging two to three bugs per anglers (with three times that many short), while the boats further up the coast are reporting from a half- to one lobster per angler.
INSTRUCTIONAL CHARTERS: The staff of 976-TUNA is hosting instructional charters throughout the season, offering advice to beginning or veteran anglers and on-the-water teaching of techniques for different saltwater species. The charters are done for this fall and won’t start again until early spring. Check 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; Hook’s 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. Harbor 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; Davey’s 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.