Surf Fishing Round-Up

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Tuesday, April 18, 2017
Perch and halibut are the best bets
Tuesday, May 09, 2017
Halibut fishing took top billing

Rocky coves provided the best fishing
The bite held up well despite the wind, reported Hook, Line and Sinker in Santa Barbara. On the days the wind backed off, anglers still found successful halibut fishing. East Beach, Goleta, and the harbor spit all kicked out fish. Big Hammer Swimbaits, Flash Minnows and Carolina rigged plastic sand dabs have been top lures. Anchovies have been a good bait choice. The perch bite has also been solid with fish to 1 ½ pounds taking grubs, Gulp! Sandworms and mussel. Jalama, Graveyards, Bacara and East Beach have all been good. The bite on the rocky beaches has been excellent for a mix of calico bass, sand bass, johnnie bass and chocolate rockfish. Squid has been the top bait. Leopard sharks have been active on most beaches.

MALIBU — Tough conditions with winds and white caps most of the week, reported Wylie’s. The better days however did see some catches. Some of the protected rocky coves and stretches provided the best fishing. Good mixed bag reports came from Leo Carillo, El Matador, El Pescador and Las Flores. Anglers soaking squid and shrimp reported a nice mix of calico bass, sand bass, yellowfin croaker and leopard sharks. Cut anchovy was the better shot for a halibut. Early in the week, with better conditions, the perch bite was good below Point Mugu. Oxnard and Ventura beaches have also been holding quality fish if the conditions are right.

REDONDO BEACH — The bonito have made a spring appearance in King Harbor, reported Just Fishing. The fish are in the 1- to 3-pound class and scattered. With the wind and swell up, anglers inside the harbor, north of the short pier were also scoring croaker, perch and the occasional sand bass on mussel and lugworms. When the swell is down, Torrance Beach has been a good place to look for a legal halibut. Krocodiles have been the top spoon. With lots of small anchovies inside, finding the bait is key.

SEAL BEACH — With swell, wind and lots of dirty water, the best bet this week was again inside the jetties, reported Big Fish. Anglers working the harbor reported a mix of calico bass, sand bass, spotted bay bass, halibut, jack smelt and up to legal barracuda. Plastic flukes have been red hot with swimbaits, Reebs and spoons also taking fish. Cut anchovy or live smelt drifted in the channels has been best for halibut. A few spots of striped bass were seen up chasing bait in the back channels.

NEWPORT BEACH — The end of the peninsula saw the quickest bounce back from some tough wind and swell, reported Ketcham Bait and Tackle. Anglers were finding a good grub bite for perch on the better days. Some of the larger catches were pushing 2-pounds. Heavy sinkers are the norm on these steep beaches. The halibut specialist were finding a few legal fish off the street jetties and Newland. Slow rolling a Krocodile where you find birds picking has been a top tactic.

DANA POINT — Brown, cold, rolled over water was the norm, reported Hogan’s Bait and Tackle. Very few catches were reported throughout the week. The only bright spot was a few sharks and rays caught off Doheny at night. This stretch has experienced some of the toughest spring fishing in years.

OCEANSIDE — The weather put the kibosh on the beach halibut bite but the harbor and lagoon fishing held up, according to Pacific Coast. Wind swell and dirty water made things tough on most beaches so anglers turned to the lagoons and harbor. The catch of the week was a 31-4 monster halibut taken on an umbrella rig fished inside Hediondo Lagoon. The big fish knocked off the 17 pounder leading the shop’s Penn-sponsored halibut derby. Anglers reported wads of small anchovies and smelt feeding on the tidal current. A 10-pound fish and several other fish approaching double digits were also reported. Most offerings are working including, swimbaits, flukes, spoons, live smelt and cut anchovy. The shop reported this spring halibut bite as the best in several seasons.

SOLAN BEACH — With conditions tough on the beaches, halibut anglers turned to Mission and San Diego Bay for catches, reported Blue Water. One shop regular caught and released 14 halibut working the docks and channels with swimbaits in San Diego Bay. Smelt, grunion and anchovy patterns have been best. With good weather in the forecast look for the beach bite to bounce back.

Compiled by Gundy Gunderson

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