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Surf Fishing Round-Up

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Halibut fishing was much improved
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Perch bite solid, calico bass excellent

It was all about the weather this week
A few anglers were able to fish the weather windows — finding a clean beach was another story, reported Hook, Line and Sinker in Santa Barbara. The perch bite has been solid on the better days. Anglers have been finding schools on most beaches. Carolina-rigged grubs or Gulp! Sandworms have been the best way to find a school. The standard spots have been producing including Jalama, Goleta, Gaviota, and Carpinteria.

MALIBU — Not a lot of anglers this week, reported Wylie’s. There were only a few fishable days. A handful of short halibut were taken along Malibu beaches. The first grunion run has drawn in more fish. Look for this bite to take off as conditions improve. Most of the northern perch grounds were subject to wind, swell and an inordinate amount of junk in the water.

REDONDO BEACH — A little sniff of run-off had the striped bass active this week, reported Just Fishing. A few fish were reported taken near the Hermosa Pier on cut anchovy. The weather wiped out conditions, but look for these fish to hang out throughout the spring. With lots of junk in the water, fishing on bay beaches was slow this week.

SEAL BEACH — A few halibut were reported to have been taken along the protected beaches, according to Big Fish. Anglers working the Shoreline Drive and Cherry Beach stretches found decent conditions and a mix of short to just-legal fish. With debris in the water, bait was a better choice. Salted anchovy was a best bait. The grunion tend to stage along this stretch so look for better fishing as conditions improve.

NEWPORT BEACH — The best bet for cleaner water was the stretch from the piers to the Wedge, reported Ketcham Tackle. Anglers reported tough conditions on most beaches. With lots of junk in the water, the bait bite was a better choice. A few barred perch and yellowfin croaker were reported taken near the piers on lugworms and mussel.

DANA POINT — With stirred-up conditions, fishing was spotty all week, reported Hogan’s Bait and Tackle. Salt Creek and Strands had the best conditions. Anglers reported taking a mix of small barred perch and shiner perch on lugworms and mussel. Prior to the weather, the grunion run had perked up the halibut bite. But lots of salad in the water has made most beaches unfishable. The stretch below San Juan Creek was the dirtiest. With spring approaching, this bite is poised to take off. Pier anglers reported a few mackerel and top smelt with the occasional bass or short halibut.

OCEANSIDE — Excitement of the week was a school of striped bass crashing bait off the south Oceanside Jetty, reported Pacific Coast. A shop regular was on the spot sticking a 5-pound fish on a hard jerkbait. After watching several more fish follow the bait without a strike, the angler hooked and landed a 28-inch halibut. With freshwater run-off hitting the beaches look for these fish to be increasingly active, especially with staging grunion around. The river and lagoon mouths are key locations.

SOLANA BEACH — Chal­lenging conditions all week, reported Blue Water. Prior to the weather, the barred surfperch were biting well off Del Mar, Torrey Pines and Mission beaches. The grub bite was best. Look for this bite to resume with cleaner water and better conditions. The halibut bite was also on the rise after the first grunion run of the year. The lagoon and river mouths were holding a mix of short to just-legal fish. This bite will also resume as spring approaches.

— Compiled by Gundy Gunderson

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