CALIFORNIA'S ONLY SPORTSMAN'S NEWS SINCE 1953


Bob Vanian's 976-Bite Hot Bite

Good action on U.S. side of border
The excellent offshore fishing continues with lots of yellowfin tuna biting and with a mix of yellowtail, dorado and bluefin tuna around to add a chance at adding some variety to the catch. The best of the fishing is going on in Mexican waters with some of the offshore banks in United Sates waters that are located down toward the border also producing some action.




Regarding the bluefin tuna closure in Mexican waters, I spoke with a Conapesca representative on Tuesday and asked if they had received the anticipated document from the Mexican government that would end the bluefin tuna closure in Mexican waters. He said they had not yet received such a document and said that until the time as such as written document is issued and received, that the bluefin tuna closure in Mexican waters remains in effect. He specifically indicated that it is still illegal to keep bluefin tuna caught in Mexican waters.


Current areas providing some of what has been pretty good to good action on the United States side of the border are the waters around and about the 182 Spot, the Corner, the 43 Fathom Spot and the area 10 to 15 miles outside of La Jolla and Del Mar.


Offshore banks on the Mexican side of the border is where the red hot fishing is going on and areas producing wide open near limit to limit yellowfin tuna action are the 224 Spot, the 302 Spot, the 371 Bank and the area around the Upper Hidden Bank. The area inside of the Inner Bank outside of Ensenada is also a productive zone for yellowfin tuna. Yellowfin tuna and bluefin tuna that get up into the 80 to 100 pound range continue to bite around the tuna pens that are located below and inside of the Upper Hidden Bank but keep in mind that keeping bluefin tuna caught in Mexican waters remains illegal as is talked about above.


Most of the yellowfin tuna have been falling within the 15- to 25-pound range with a few larger fish to 50 pounds also in the mix. Most of the yellowtail have been falling within the 5- to 12-pound range with some bigger fish to around 25 pounds occasionally in the mix. The dorado have been running from 10 to 20 pounds.


Most of the action has been found on live bait while fishing around kelp paddies or spots of fish found under working tern birds. Fishing around hammerhead sharks has also been leading to tuna action. There have been some trolling strikes in the mix but most of the tuna stops come from spotting something to stop on and fish with live bait. Porpoise schools have also led to yellowfin tuna action via trolling strikes or stopping the boat over a meter mark or around some working birds and using live bait.


It often pays to be patient in waiting for the tuna to come up and bite when fishing the tern bird schools or kelp paddies as sometimes it takes a while for the tuna to come up and bite. Keeping an eye on the fathometer to see if tuna are starting to gather under the boat is a good way to tell if you should keep drifting and give the tuna some more time to come up and bite.


Some recent individual catch reports start with a report from today's (Thursday's fishing) fishing from private boater Sean Rooney of the Reel Busy who was out fishing with his dad Mike, his 9 year old son Keegan, and his friend Dave. Sean reported that they got into a wide open yellowfin tuna bait stop from stopping near a spot of working birds and using live bait. They fished the stop for 2 hours and left biting fish with their limits aboard to head for home. Sean said that 9 year old Keegan caught his own limit of yellowfin tuna today. Way to go Keegan!


They had anchovies with a mix of mini-mac mackerel, sardines and brown bait in the bait tank and the yellowfin bit best on the anchovies and sardines. The yellowfin they caught were in the 20- to 25-pound class and they had their hot bait stop while fishing below and outside of the 302 Spot at 28 miles 218 degrees from Point Loma.


Private boater Tom Parnakian of the Ambush reported fishing an overnight trip on the Outer Limits out of Seaforth Sportfishing on Wednesday when they had 20 anglers catch limits of yellowfin tuna (100) and 21 yellowtail. Parnakian reported that he had his personal limit of yellowfin aboard by 9:45 a.m. He said they started the day fishing at the tuna pens where they got into a plunker yellowfin tuna bite and picked up about 15 yellowfin tuna before moving on. He said the stop of the day came from stopping alongside a spot of working tern birds where the yellowfin came to the corner of the boat and bit wide open. The yellowfin they caught went to around 20 pounds with most in the 15-pound class.


Private boater Ray Millman of Go The Distance fished on Wednesday and reported that the 4 anglers aboard caught limits of yellowfin tuna while fishing the region of the 371 Bank. Millman reported that their fish ranged in size from 10 to 20+ pounds and that they had their best fishing in 71.8 to 72.25 degree water. Their last stop of the day was one of the best and was a short way outside of the 371 Bank while fishing 29 miles 209 degrees from Point Loma.


Private boater Dave Klimkiewicz of the Don't Trip fished on Wednesday and reported catching limits of yellowfin tuna for the 4 anglers aboard. Klimkiewicz was out fishing with his friend Damien Hartman and they each had their sons aboard, 11 year old Jake Klimkiewicz and 13 year old Luke Hartman. The kids had a blast catching yellowfin in a wide open bite. I just love seeing kids getting a chance to get in on this red hot fishing!


Klimkiewicz said that their last stop was their best stop and that the yellowfin were biting so wide open that they had numerous occasions where everyone on the boat was hooked up with a yellowfin at the same time. This red hot action started from stopping near a spot of breaking fish that was found outside of the 302 Spot at 26 miles 224 degrees from Point Loma.


Private boater Team New Dippy fished on Wednesday and reported limits of yellowfin tuna while fishing the region of the 224 Spot. Their fish were in the 15- to 20-pound range and their best stop originated from stopping and fishing in the general area where there were other boats drifting and catching yellowfin. All it took was some chum to bring the yellowfin up around the boat. This hot bait stop was had at 22 miles 234 degrees from Point Loma.


Marlin fishing was hot late last week and on the weekend with some good action being reported by boats fishing the Osborn Bank and the 125 and 172 Spots off the West End of Catalina. The action has cooled off since the weekend with scattered marlin action being reported in the area of the 14 Mile Bank, the Slide and about 5 miles off the coast at Laguna Beach and San Onofre. There has also been some scattered marlin action within the tuna fleet fishing around the 182 Spot, the 224 Spot and the 302 Spot. A report from the Banda Bank below Ensenada is that there were some marlin biting down that way as well.


The fishing continues to be red hot, the hot bite areas have changed a bit but there is still some outstanding yellowfin tuna action within 30 miles of Point Loma. I hope you can get out there and get in on the action sometime soon.


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It is my goal to provide you timely and accurate information in these reports containing news from right off the water. If you require more details that include the specific location of where catches have been made, I refer you to the daily Member’s Reports at www.976bite.com . Those Member’s Reports contain additional specifics that include latitude and longitude coordinates and other descriptive references about where and how fish are being caught. Make the most efficient use of your precious time on the water with the use of timely and accurate information.


Dana Landing San Diego Open

Dana Landing Mission Bay Sept. 5-6
Free Entry for Yami Outboard Owners!

makeawish


To signup on line CLICK HERE

Mission Bay yellowtail, tuna jackpot tourney Sept. 5-6


THE DANA LANDING Fuel Dock, Launch ramp, Market, deli and tackle shop — parking is convenient just off I-5, near Sea World and the Dana Inn next door.

EVERY ANGLER GETS a Yamaha hat, a chicken BBQ, a high quality Dana Landing shirt (that fits!), a drawing prize and a chance to win $2,500, plus more money if they enter the big tuna yellowtail $100 optionals.


The weekend after Labor Day is when the Yamaha Dana Landing Jackpot is slated with a special bonus for all Yamaha-powered teams: a free entry for two; also, you have a choice of launching at Shelter Island or Mission Bay with weigh-in and awards at Dana Landing.


MISSION BAY – Back for a second year, the Dana Landing Jackpot sponsored by Yamaha Outboards has some pretty enticing reasons to enter, so save the date.


“The tourney comes at a fantastic time of year, the week after Labor Day, and smack dab in in the middle of the best fishing season for yellows and tuna in years,” said director Pat McDonell. “Last year the opinion was that to win you had go far. Real far, to get that one big fish. This year the rules are changed. You weigh in THREE fish, any three yellows or tuna – not a single biggest fish, to place in the first three spots for $2,500 in prize money and sponsor’s prizes.


He added, “Best of all, Mexico is not needed this year for the event with all the FMM business. The fish are CLOSE. So, there’s less fuel, and great fishing just a few miles off the coast. This year, every team has a shot at winning.”

There’s another thing to consider. Big boats and teams are on a level playing field. Those big bluefin under the pens last year? Forget it. That fishery is off-limits, even though people are still fishing for them. But we will enforce that bluefin fishery closure if it it still in effect. We are still awaiting written confirmation as of Aug. 22." 

So let’s look at the tourney, and some reasons why you should fish it out of Dana Landing in Mission Bay/San Diego on  Sept. 5-6.


— No. 1, it’s very inexpensive to enter, just $50 a person, and that’s fully half of what it costs for the white seabass event in Catalina, and even better for Yamaha owners. Why, if you fish on a Yamaha powered boat, the first two individual entries are free. It costs nothing for a two-person to enter.”


—Why enter it? Aside from the great tuna and yellowtail fishing just outside Mission Bay, why should a bunch of people enter the event? Well, if you are going to fish anyway, this a helluva tourney to participate in for a number of reasons. Keep in mind, we are not penalizing anglers who do not have a Yamaha powered boat. We are just rewarding those who do.


— That $50 fee per person is cheap, if you have to pay it because you are not fishing on a Yamaha powered boat, yet there is a guaranteed first place payout of $2,000. Second place pays $300, third $200, but those amounts are bulked up by some great sponsors prizes for second and third.


— As mentioned, if you are fishing on a Yamaha powered boat, the entry is free for up to two anglers on the team. Any additional team members pay the usual $50.


— There is no limit on the number of anglers on a boat, but all people on the boat must enter at $50, even if it is a chartered boat. Last year three charterboats competed at the last minute. A fun added value for the passengers on the charter. We don’t care. The tourney can be fished on a cattle boat, but everyone must be entered, including crew. No exceptions.


— Tourney add-ons: If you are fishing another tourney, any tourney, you can fish this tournament concurrently. "I don't know of any, however," said McDonell. 


— S.D. Bay or Mission Bay. Your choice. Teams can check in at Dana Landing Market and fuel dock in Mission Bay, or Shelter Island in San Diego Bay at the launch ramp the night before so they don’t have to backtrack to Mission Bay,” said tourney director McDonell. “I would caution the window to check-in at Shelter Island basin at the launch ramp is much shorter than Mission Bay, 8-9 p.m. on Friday and 5 to 6 a.m. on Saturday. “Of course, the weigh-in and awards are both at Dana Landing Fuel Dock and Market. Figure out which is best for you to start from. If you fishing on a trailerboat, I would leave from Dana Landing in Mission Bay. If your boat is in a slip in S.D. Bay, it depends on where you are fishing. Come north, check in, get supplies and head offshore to La Jolla.


By far, Dana Landing Market and Fuel Dock is the best one-stop trailerboat facility on the coast,” said McDonell. “Fuel, food, free launching and parking, all right next to a great bayfront hotel. You just can’t beat it. Teams from S.D. Bay who weigh-in on Saturday afternoon and stay for the awards will have some dock room, but it’s first come-first served basis. Unless we have a ton of boats from S.D. Bay looking for a slip or tie-up, I see no big issues. The weigh-in and awards will be quick, a few hours.”


— Optional Money: At this time, there are $100 tuna and $100 yellowtail optionals for biggest individual fish.


— The weigh-in held over two hours at Dana Landing in late afternoon. is for yellowtail or tuna, in a three fish aggregate, so you can weigh all 3 tuna, all 3 yellows or a combination of two yellows and a tuna or two tuna and a yellowtail. If you are in the optional for tuna or yellowtail or both, that biggest fish is your entry. Simple.


— Exciting weigh-in: This year, instead of using the dock, teams will bring fish up the ramp in carts to where the crowd awaits in front of the Dana Landing Market. “What a great venue for the weigh-in. I am building a temporary weigh scale and people can watch the whole weigh-in unfold, and hear the teams being interviewed on a microphone, just like at the Cabo Tuna Jackpot. We expect a fun crowd as the fish are brought up. The market is right there, with food, beer, seating and more, so kick back and wait for the winners to weigh in.”


— Prizes: The $50 entry fee includes a goodie bag of hooks, a Yamaha hat, a Dana Landing shirt, a BBQ dinner after weigh-in and a ticket for drawings for prizes that include 11 Avet reels, Seaguar fluoro coils, four Cousins rods, six pairs of Costas, Terrafin memberships, Plano tackle boxes and Plano travel tubes, and more.


— Be a part of the radio broadcast: Phil Friedman of phillipfriedmanoutdoors.com will be there again to do a live radio web show (http://www.blogtalkradio.com/philipfriedmanoutdoors) at weigh-in and that guy makes everything exciting.


— Early Bird Prize: Teams that sign up a week before by Aug. 29 are eligible for the drawing for the $900 value Furuno 1870 video GPS/Fishfinder with C-Map card for the SoCal coast.


— Make it a long weekend for the family! The Dana Inn is the perfect place to take the family. Parking your rig is NOT an issue. The hotel shares parking with the free launch ramp, right there at tourney headquarters of Steve Pinard’s Dana Landing Market and Fuel Dock.


“Three of the teams last year stayed for two nights by the bay with their family, “ said McDonell, “So while the teams fished for yellows and tuna that Saturday, the rest of the family enjoyed a great weekend mini-vacation.”


To signup on line CLICK HERE or call tourney director Pat McDonell for details at (949) 366-0030 ext. 33 or pat@wonews.com


THE ANGLER MANAGEMENT team that won the inaugural event last year. This year yellowtail and tuna are eligible species for the overall payday, with a three-fish aggregate, and two Big Fish optionals of $100 for yellowtail and tuna. Got a Yami to fish with, the two entries are free for your team!


Schedule for Yamaha Dana Landing Jackpot


When: WON/Yamaha Dana Landing Jackpot is Friday, Sept. 5-6.


Where: Dana Landing Market, Tackle and Fuel Dock , Mission Bay.


Check-in: Shelter Island launch basin in S.D. Bay 8 to 9 p.m. Friday, or Saturday 5 to 6 a.m., or at tourney headquarters at Mission Bay’s Dana Landing Friday 4 to 10 p.m. or Saturday morning 5 to 6 a.m..


Fishing: From check-in (Friday or Saturday, SD or MB) to weigh-in at Dana Landing Market 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday.


Weigh-in: The exciting weigh-in at the Dana Landing Market on Saturday is from 4 to 6 p.m.


Awards and Drawings: Barbecue begins: 6 p.m. Yamaha awards to follow at 6:30.


Here is a direct link for the Yamaha-Dana Landing supplement on our server:

http://forum.wonews.com/3dissue/won2014/201408153dl/index.html


Want to enter the Dana Landing Jackpot?


If you run a Yamaha powered boat, it might cost you nothing to enter;


If we told you could fish in a inshore/offshore yellowtail and tuna tournament, get free goodie bag gifts, have a chance to win $2,000, $300 or $200, get a hats, t-shirt , win a drawing prize, have a BBQ dinner by Mission Bay and it would cost you nothing, would you enter?


You likely couldn’t pass it up. could you? It’s like going fishing with extra benefits. Why not? The second annual WON/Yamaha Dana Landing Jackpot is Sept. 5-6. and to make it even more convenient, you can leave from Shelter Island in S.D. Bay or at tourney headquarters at Mission Bay’s Dana Landing Friday 4 to 10 p.m. or Saturday morning 5 to 6 a.m.. The exciting weigh-in at the Dana Landing Market on Saturday will be for up to three fish, an 3 tuna or yellowtail determines the winner. Awards and drawings and BBQ to follow. There’s also $100 single big fish optionals for tuna and yellowtail if you choose to enter on site. You can pay those optional by cash only on site. No cards, please.


DON’T MISS THE Aug, 29 deadline to be eligible for the drawing for the Furuno unit!


If you want to sign up, you can go to wonews.com and go to WON events and sign up with a credit card (if you have to pay any money, as some teams with Yamaha outboards do not) , The easiest way is to pay by mailed personal check and include the entry form that is part of this special preview supplement, and make the check made out to Western Outdoors,. Mail it to WON/Dana Landing Tourney, 901 Calle Amanacer, Suite 300, San Clemente CA 92673.


If you sign up with a credit card, remember two things: You must send in by fax or mail an entry form with team members names whether you pay any money or not. The fax number is (949) 366-0804. Attention Denise C. If you have questions about your entry, call Denise at (949) 366-0256, ext 25. For tourney or schedule questions, call tourney director Pat McDonell at that same number, ext 33. Leave a message and he will call you back right away.


If you have two anglers and fish with Yamaha main power source, all we need is basic angler info. It’s free for the first two teammates, $50 for any more than that. If you are not on a Yamaha boat, it’s $50 an angler. All people on a boat must be a team member and be registered. No exceptions, which includes charterboats.


So, as an example, if you have a Yami on the back of your boat, and you have three people on your team, you pay $50 plus any optional money. If you are on a diesel powered boat, or a six-pack, or any non-Yamaha boat, and you have four anglers, you pay $200. If you are on a charterboat with two crew and six anglers, the fee is $400. Plus optionals.


See you there!


Rules of the Yamaha Dana Landing Jackpot


It is the sole responsibility of the participating anglers, captains and crews to know and abide by the tournament's rules. By entering the 2014 Dana Landing Jackpot they acknowledge such and agree to all rules.


There is no limit to the number of anglers, but there is a minimum, two anglers. All anglers on any competing boat must be signed in, and paid for as an entry.


All participants must possess a valid U.S. and Mexican fishing license. If you do not plan to fish Mexican waters, you do not, obviously, need a Mexican license or FMM.


There is no limit or restriction on bait.


The official channel is 72. There is no obligation to report catches.


No bluefin may be taken in Mexican waters. There is no such recreational restriction in U.S waters.


Any boat deemed operating in an unsafe manner will be disqualified.


Teams must weigh in between 4 and 6 p.m. at Dana landing.You must reach the Dana Landing area and be in line at the ramp with your fish by 6 p.m. to be eligible to weigh-in. We will weigh all fish that are in line by 6 p.m.


The overall winners are determined by a composite of any three tuna or yellowtail. Teams must decide which three fish to bring to the scale. If a team is in a big fish optional, the largest of that species brought to the scale and weighed will be chosen. (As such, if a team is in the yellowtail optional, they could bring in three tuna for the overall, and bring a yellowtail for that $100 Big Fish optional.


It is the responsibility of the team to decide which fish to weigh prior to docking at the weigh area. Under the current weigh rules, the maximum number of fish that can be brought up the ramp to the scale area is four fish, and only if a team is in the optionals. If you are not in the optionals, only three fish can be brought to the scales.


Up to two anglers on a main-Yamaha powered boat do not have to pay the $50 individual entry fee. All others, on boats with Yamahas or not, must pay $50. Six pack and charter captains must pay the entry fee. No exceptions. No fish will be weighed in unless all anglers are registered as team members and have paid their fee.


Any team that has a non-entrant on board and weighs in fish, and is discovered, will be DQ’d.


All teams must check in with tourney staff at S.D. Bay or Mission Bay. They can then begin fishing at any time.


First place overall (3 fish max aggregate) pays $2,000, second $300 and third place $200. Optionals paid in are paid out at 80 percent.


If no one catches a yellowtail or tuna in those optionals, the money, minus 20 percent, is refunded to the teams by check.


In the event of a tie in any overall or optional pool, a coin toss by the tournament director will determine the winner if there are only two teams tied. More than two teams tying will result in a drawing among those eams.


Mutilated fish will not be weighed in. The tournament director will make the final decision, with no protests allowed since it is a visual judgment call.


Any team or individual receiving monetary winnings is required to provide to Western Outdoors Publications a social security number and a current address. A signature will additionally be required for receipt and acknowledgment of winnings. Team captains of teams that win money will be required to meet WON staff at to apply for their winnings which will be sent by check via mail within a week after the event.


All decisions by the tournament directors and advisory board are final.


All monetary winners
will be subject to a lie detector test at the discretion of the tournament directors. If any angler declines to be tested, his team is automatically disqualified from receiving any monetary awards. The lie detector test will be used as one of, but not the sole, determining factor in any decision by the tournament directors and the advisory board.

The tournament director reserves the right to alter starting and finishing times to coincide with weather, tides and probability of better fishing conditions.


All verbal protests and supporting evidence must be presented to the tournament director immediately upon returning to Mission Bay, followed by a written protest no more than 30 minutes after the verbal protest.


Any verbal or physical abuse or threats from entrants toward Jackpot staff is cause for a team's disqualification.


WON reserves the right to deny any teams' or individual's entry. Also note that the above rules are subject to change prior to the event.


Teams which weigh in fish cannot continue to fish that day. All boats that weigh in fish the first day are subject to a thorough boat inspection at the dock by a tournament staffer.


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Big Bear TROUTFEST

Big Bear TroutfesT, Oct. 4-5, 2014
It’ll be here sooner than you think

If this summer is akin to most others, the time will be flying by over the next couple of months, and the tenth annual Big Bear Lake TroutfesT will be upon us in what is seemingly no time at all. And what better way to transition from summer to fall than with perhaps what is the most fun-filled, family-oriented fishing tournament of the year in Southern California?


klamathboatgrandprize

THE GRAND RAFFLE PRIZE, to be raffled off to one lucky angler, will be a Klamath 16 EXW. Boat package, which includes trailer and 40 hp Mercury FourStroke, is valued at $19,500.


Western Outdoor News’ annual Big Bear TroutfesT turns 10 years old this year, marking a terrific run of a decade’s worth of fun and successful trout tournaments that have provided countless smiles and good times for anglers of all ages in the scenic San Bernadino Mountains. The beauty of the TroutfesT is that it simply isn’t your typical true fishing “tournament,” but rather, an opportunity for a few days of family fun, light-hearted competition and a chance to enjoy the many unique things Big Bear has to offer.


Now is the time to ensure you and your friends and family jump on board for this year’s Troutfest by signing up early and locking up your spot in the tourney – and making sure that you’re among the first 600 anglers to sign up in order to secure your free goodie bag stuffed with some great giveaways from many of the event’s sponsors. The maximum number of anglers for the tournament is 1,000, and the event has sold out in the past, so be sure to get in early.


Keeping in tradition with every previous TroutfesT, this year’s event is loaded with droves of great divisional prizes, raffle prizes and blind bogey awards that regular participants of the annual tournament have come to expect. From great divisional prizes, blind bogey prizes and tagged and big fish awards, on up to the always-coveted grand raffle prize of the Klamath boat/Mercury motor package valued at $19,500, there are quite a few ways to end the weekend as a winner at the 2014 Big Bear TroutfesT.


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PANTHER MARTIN AND SEA EAGLE is raffling off a new 285 Frameless Pontoon Boat with MinnKota trolling motor!


As always with the event, Troutfest has proved to be a fantastic event for families and kids. Year after year, countless youngsters have an absolute blast catching trout and being a legitimate part of the friendly competition.


Last year, two elated young anglers emerged victorious in their respective Junior Male and Junior Female divisions. Isaiah Wersky, 6, was impressively able to crack the double-digit mark with his two-day total weight of 10.05 pounds to take first place for the males, while 8-year-old Taylor Donahue of Norco amassed a 7.12-pound bag of six fish over the two days to take top Junior Female honors.


On the adult side, it was Chris Henke taking the male division with a 15.3-pound total weight, while Maureen Treacy’s two full limits of trout added up to 14.5 pounds, conquering her fellow female competitors by a margin of nearly 5 pounds!


Tons of trout are on tap to be stocked in Big Bear Lake prior to the TroutfesT to ensure there will be plenty of heavy-hitting action, whether you choose to soak bait, troll or toss lures. And another great aspect of the event is that you don’t even need a boat to score both plenty of fish and swag at TroutfesT. Anglers fishing the event can fish from shore or nearly any other type of floating vessel – so long as it’s legally permissible according the official TroutfesT rules.


So scrap any tentative plans you may have for the first weekend of October, get the family or friends together, and get in on the loads of fun sure to be had at the 10th annual Big Bear TroutfesT.


Aside from the free goodies, great chances to win big and a good ol’ fashioned trout fishing weekend, the 2014 TroutfesT is sure provide great moments and memories that will last a lifetime.


Destination Big Bear Cabins - Special TroutfesT 2014 Offer


One (1) FREE entry fee, a $75 value, if you book your cabin for Big Bear Troutfest 2014 with Destination Big Bear for the tournament, plus the chance to win a free stay for next year's Big Bear TroutfesT. One free entry per cabin rental. Click HERE for more details or call (909) 752-0234


For more information or to register for this year’s event, contact Tournament Director Bill Egan at (949) 366-0030, ext. 40, enter online CLICK HERE, or fill out and submit the entry form in the pages of this week’s edition of WON.


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SPORT CHALET WILL be giving away up to $4,250 in gift cards at the TroutfesT! Every angler (up to 1,000) will get a $5 Sport Chalet gift card just for entering the event!


Cousins Surf Fishing Round-Up

Cheap bait in the surf doing the trick
The area north and south of the Goleta Pier continues to kick out halibut and short and just-legal white sea bass according to Hook, Line and Sinker in Santa Barbara. Bait is still plentiful in tight. Krocodiles, Kastmasters, cut anchovy and hard and soft jerk-baits are all getting bites. There have also been reports of smaller thresher sharks smacking around bait off the pier. Bite on smaller perch to a pound and a half very good at East Beach on Gulp! Sandworms in camo or bloody colors.

MALIBU — Ginny at Wylie’s reported good action on corbina south of the Malibu Pier. The fish are biting on the incoming tide and taking sandcrabs, and fresh shucked mussel. With squid showing up offshore, cut squid has been the ticket for a variety of inshore species including calico bass, cabezon, sargo, grass rockfish and mostly short white seabass. Rocky areas with kelp have been the best bet. Places like, Pescador, Coral Beach, Leo Carillo and Big rock have all been kicking out fish.


REDONDO — Pete at Just Fishing reported the corbina bite continues strong on south bay beaches. Torrance and El Segundo beaches have been kicking out fish in the one to three pound class. Softshell sand crabs, if you can find them, and fresh mussel have been the baits of choice. Night anglers scoring big on leopard and smoothhound sharks soaking whole squid. Bonito action still good in and around the harbor.


SEAL BEACH — Big Fish reported lots of small bait has drawn in the predators along 72nd place, Belmont Shores and Long Beach beaches. Anglers are scoring good numbers of halibut and shorter white seabass throwing Berkley Jerk Shad in white and anchovy colors. Lots of bonito have also been chasing bait in and around the Belmont and Seal Beach piers. Spoons and feathered splasher rigs cast on the long rods have been getting some strikes. Corbina action has also been solid along Bolsa Chica and Huntington beaches. Larger sandcrabs, fresh mussel and ghost shrimp have been working well. Night time shark action has been excellent on slab mackerel and whole squid.


NEWPORT BEACH — The corbina bite continues strong off the streets and River Jetties as reported by Jimmy’s Bait and Tackle. Digging sand crabs at the base of the jetties is the key to finding the big nugget crabs that the corbina prefer. With lighter beach traffic, early mornings and late evenings have been the most consistent times. Bonito bite continues good off Newport and Balboa piers. Spoons, splashers and smelt baited trolley rigs all working.


DANA POINT — Hogan’s Bait and Tackle reported corbina action as the best of the year. Anglers are finding biting fish as the summer wanes. Digging deep for better crabs or screening softshells has been the ticket to finding the right bait. Good bite on pound to pound and a half perch at Strands, Salt Creek and Poche beaches. Bonito and fire cracker yellowtail still showing off pier. Diamond jigs and splashers rigged with a large Sabiki feather has been working well. Some big spotfin biting at night with the full moon. Ghostshrimp, and cut squid fished on the long rod has been the key.


OCEANSIDE — Corbina action continues to be the best bet as the fish have settled in to a good bite according to Pacific Coast. Larger crabs fished on 6-pound fluorocarbon leader has been the way to hook the still sometimes wary fish. Beach traffic has been putting the fish down. Good spotted bay bass bite in the warmer waters of the lagoons. Small swim baits and soft jerk baits are working well for the spunky welter weights. Plenty of yellowfin croaker also in the mix. Bonito and small yellowtail chasing bait around the Oceanside Pier.


SOLANA BEACH — Torrey Pines and Blacks continues to be the hot spot for corbina off North County as reported by Blue Water Tackle. Matching an incoming tide with an early morning or late evening session has been the key to success. Anglers finding larger crabs and many more molting crabs. The good bait has made for more bites.


Compiled by Gundy Gunderson


Grady Istre's Blog

Buying a started dog
With the wild bird season rapidly approaching, many hunters are considering the purchase of a started dog to enhance their hunting experience to help put more birds in the bag this year. I know this because of the many confused hunters who have called me asking what skills a started dog should possess. Unfortunately, there is no governing body in the gun dog world to measure the level of competence of any hunting dog world to set a standard of performance or skill level by which you can gauge a potential candidate when considering purchasing a started dog. So when you’re considering purchasing a started dog, you’re on your own.

The term “started dog” is used for any dog with any amount of training under his belt. It can mean anything from a puppy that has had a mild course of obedience to a well-trained dog that take hand signals — I know, it’s crazy, but that’s the dilemma faced by sportsmen today.


It’s okay to have a preconceived idea as to the talent level of the prospective dog you would like to purchase. However, when talking to a seller it’s best to do most of the listening. If you are a novice hunter, you might consider hiring someone knowledgeable to help you assess the quality and training level of a dog you are considering purchasing. So you’re better educated, I have compiled a list of questions that should help anyone who is having trouble deciding.


# 1. How old is the dog? Keep in mind that the older the dog the more training he has — generally speaking of course.


# 2. Is the dog genetically sound and clear of ( EIC) exercise induced collapse? Not only the parents but grandparents should have OFA certificates for hips dysplasia.


# 3. What is his training level? Your decision, how well trained a dog do you want.


# 4. What is his pedigree? It’s always a good idea to purchase a dog with good blood lines, showing hunt titles and /or field trial titles in the near background.


# 5. If the dog is a bird dog, does he dog hold point and is he steady to shot. Does he quarter at a desired distance and does he retrieve downed birds? These skills are important gauges as to his training level.


If purchasing this started dog from a professional trainer, ask if there are any free lessons included with the purchase. Most trainers want you to be happy with your dog and will be willing to do so.


In my experience, many hunters expect too much. They want the animal to have all the skills of a field champion, and he only one year old. I often have to bring up that point to a prospective buyer’s attention and that it takes time to train a dog to become proficient at his job.


Fellow hunters, In my opinion, the best possible scenario is to purchase a dog that not only has learned his skills, but has at least one season of hunting under his belt; be advised, that dog will cost more.


Buying a 3- or 4-year old dog should be considered even though it's tempting to think, “I want to get as many years out of this dog as possible.” The joy of hunting over a well-trained dog cannot be measured in age or dollars and cents. Owning a well-trained, seasoned dog will elevate your hunting experience to a level that will bring you a sense of pride that you probably didn’t even know existed.


Still, one important factor remains when considering any individual dog. And it’s an intangible necessity, you’ve got to like the dog. If you don’t, do not purchase the dog. It won’t work. Although rare, the personality of a dog and man sometimes clash. So, if you don’t feel a genuine connection with the animal, it’s best to walk away, no matter how good the deal.


Good Hunting!


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Grady’s column appears in WON every other week and he can be reached at reibar.com


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