OCEAN FISHING REPORT
By Terrence Berg
LONG-RANGE UPDATE: The 14 to 16-day trips fishing off Cabo San Lucas are still finding excellent yellowfin tuna action. Intrepid reported in this week with tougher conditions, but still good numbers of 40 to 180-pound fish, and one super fish broken off. Apollo and Maxima are both running tuna trips out of Puerto Vallarta and the three-day trips have been producing some very big fish, including a couple of super cows over 300 pounds. Royal Polaris, normally running this trip, has taken a break and is doing a nature/whale watching trip to San Igancio Bay.
ONE AND ONE-HALF DAY NEWS: The 1.5-day boats running out of San Diego are either running south to fish the Colonet region for yellowtail and rockfish or running to the west to fish the Cortez and Tanner banks for bluefin tuna and yellowtail. Los Angeles and Orange County boats are also making the Cortez run. For the boats running down the coast, there was a bit of a lull in the yellowtail action this past weekend, indicating a movement of fish, but the rockfish action was still excellent. Pacific Queen out of Fisherman’s Landing had 31 anglers on its weekend trip and landed 297 rockfish, 21 lings and two yellowtail. Tribute out of Seaforth Sportfishing ran to the west and the 19 anglers on board this past weekend landed 20 bluefin, 14 yellowtail, 107 rockfish and two bonito. That brings the Tribute’s bluefin tuna for 2015 to more than 270. Normally, the bluefin count 2.5-months into the year are zero. With an El Niño now forecast for early this spring and summer, there is no reason not to expect a repeat of last year’s spectacular tuna, yellowtail and exotics season.
CORONADO ISLAND YELLOWTAIL: The yellowtail action continues to be very good at the Coronado Islands for the San Diego 3/4-day and one-day boats. The average over the past week has been from a half to two fish per angler, with San Diego out of Seaforth Sportfishing consistently making this run. On Tuesday, there were 39 anglers on this boat and had 95 yellowtail for the best count in the past week. This bite gets hammered down on weekends because of boat traffic, but if you can go mid-week, the scores are better.
SAN CLEMENTE YELLOWTAIL AND ROCKFISH: Thunderbird out of Davey’s Locker has been having very consistent fishing at San Clemente Island with few shut-downs by the Navy in recent weeks. On Monday, there were 22 anglers on board and had 88 yellowtail along with 154 whitefish and 100 rockfish.
ROCKFISH EXCELLENT: Since the rockfish opener March 1, the bite has been very good along most of the coast, with the bite getting better the progressively further north you travel. Many of the half- and three-quarter day boats along the San Diego, Orange and Los Angeles area coasts, while focusing on rockfish, have also been getting into a few yellowtail on these trips and might even focus on the ‘tails part of the time. For example, Native Son out of 22nd Street Landing has been getting half to nearly full limits of rockfish since the season opener, but most trips have had at least one yellowtail. On Tuesday, there were 13 anglers and had just one yellowtail, but 39 bocaccio, 31 red snapper and 40 other rockfish. This yellowtail-rockfish combo stuff is happening at other spots along the coast. New Del Mar out of Marina del Rey was out on a half-day Monday with 44 anglers and they had 24 yellowtail along with 150 rockfish and two ling cod, but on Tuesday’s half-day, the 79 anglers on board only managed one yellowtail, along with 165 rockfish, six sculpin, two ling cod, two sand bass and one whitefish. In most areas, the yellowtail have slowed on the backside of the full moon. Most boats are now focusing on rockfish, averaging half to nearly full limits of rockfish. On Tuesday, Victory out of Pierpoint Landing was out with 18 anglers on a three-quarter day trip and landed 159 rockifsh, 26 whitefish, 21 perch, eight sculpin and five sheephead. Up in the Channel Islands, Speed Twin has been making half-day runs and getting near-limit rockfish scores. On Tuesday this week, 24 anglers on board had 188 rockfish, three ling cod, one sculpin and one sheephead. On Monday’s trip, there were 19 anglers who landed 166 rockfish, 46 whitefish, two bonito, one sculpin and one sheephead.
SURF PERCH NEWS: Not much change in the surf fishing. The barred surf perch continue to provide almost unprecedented action, with both the volume and size of fish excellent. The bite has been particular good all along the central coast from San Simeon to Ventura with a lot of two to three-pound fish reported. The bite is best on blood or lug worms or the Berkley Gulp! sand worms.
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 first of the year will be May 6, a limited load overnight trip on Ultra out of 22nd Street Landing. The trip is limited to 10 anglers and the price is $300 per person. The charters are done 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.