Bob Vanian's 976-Bite Hot Bite

White seabass starting to bite
I am reporting to you live from my 976-Bite Fish Reports booth at the Fred Hall Show in Del Mar. It is Friday afternoon and there are a lot of people here enjoying the show. It is not the huge and sometimes fast paced show that is the Fred Show in Long Beach but it is a very large show with plenty of things to do and see. There are a lot of people out and about enjoying the show which runs through Sunday. Information about the show is available at

Even though I have been at the show I have been keeping track of the fishing as best as I can while away from my normal work station. Bluefin tuna have stayed with us throughout the winter months and have been biting out at the Cortes Bank and have been biting along with a mix of yellowtail, bonito and rockfish.

There has been a change in the pattern of the bluefin fishing to report in recent days. The Tribute out of Seaforth Sportfishing has been making regular trips out to fish the bluefin at the Cortes Bank during the winter season and in talking with Mark Larson and some of the Captains at the Seaforth Sportfishing booth the word is that the most recent trip on the Tribute that fished out at the Cortes Bank caught a mix of yellowtail and rockfish but did not connect with bluefin tuna. The information was that the water conditions had changed a bit on the bank and that they saw some schools of bluefin tuna that did not want to bite while fishing in deep water areas off the bank. The good news is that the bluefin are still in the area and hopefully they will start biting again be it in the deep water or back on the bank.

The bluefin have been running from 15 to 30 pounds and the yellowtail have been mixed size fish that have been running from 4 to 20+ pounds. The bonito out at the Cortes Bank have been mostly the good sized 8 to 14 pound fish.

The best bet for bluefin tuna during the winter season was to be fishing in the 20 to 50 fathom depths to the down current side of the 9 Fathom Spot at the Cortes Bank. Also look for yellowtail meter marks or sonar marks to stop on in the 18 to 30 fathom depths while fishing around the 9 Fathom Spot at the Cortes Bank and while fishing in similar depths in the Buoy/Bishop Rock area.

There are some improving numbers of yellowtail reported to be biting along the coast. Pat McDonell of Western Outdoor News passed along a report received from private boaters Chris and Suzanne Casillas. They are a husband and wife team that fished out at the 150 Spot below the Horseshoe Kelp on Wednesday and got into a bite that produced 2 large yellowtail. Their technique was to meter fish, anchor over the meter marks and then chum with chunks of sardines. They hooked their fish on live sardines that were fished about 60 feet below the surface. They caught their 2 nice yellows and that was enough to make them happy and they headed for home and were back by noon.

There are also some coastal yellowtail biting off La Jolla. Captain Tony of Team New Dippy was at the Fred Hall on Thursday and reported that his friend Bob McMurray of the Wet Dream caught a 20-pound yellowtail on Wednesday while fishing with a flylined mackerel. The fish was initially grabbed by a seal but they were able to get it away from the seal and make the catch.

There is information from a reliable source that some white seabass are starting to bite on mackerel and sardines for boats fishing coastal kelp bed spots between Salt Creek and Oceanside. It has been a relatively slow spring seabass season to date without much in the way of squid around but things appear to be on the upswing with the seabass fishing.

The Coronado Islands continue to produce good numbers of yellowtail. The fish have been spread out and are being found in several areas. It has often been changing from day to day but productive areas have been the hard bottom to the northeast of North Island, the Middle Grounds, the Ribbon Kelp, the South Kelp, the South Kelp Ridge and the Rockpile. There have also been reports of yellowtail bird schools found between the Rockpile and the upper end of the Upper Finger Bank, outside of Punta Salsipuedes and at the Flats between the Bull Ring and Rosarito Beach. The yellows have been located by finding spots of working birds, spots of puddling fish, sonar marks and meter marks.

A variety of methods have been working once yellowtail are located with surface iron, yo-yo iron, flylined sardines and sardines fished on a dropper loop all producing action. The Coronado Islands yellowtail have been mixed size fish that have ranged from 6 to 25 pounds.

San Clemente Island has also been producing yellowtail action with a mix of yellowtail, bonito, bass and rockfish biting. The yellowtail have been mixed sized fish that have ranged from 5 to 20+ pounds. Flylined sardines, sardines fished on a dropper loop rig and yo-yoed iron have been working best for the yellowtail. There have been a few productive areas around San Clemente Island. Try the ridges off Pyramid Cove while fishing in the 18 to 26 fathom depths. Also try fishing for yellows off the boiler rocks inside Pyramid Cove. The West End of San Clemente Island has been a productive area for boats fishing around the 9 Fathom Spot and along the front side of the Island, try for yellowtail at the Purse Seine Rock and White Rock areas.

It is shaping up to be a great spring fishing season. I hope you get a chance to get out on the water and do some fishing real soon!

* * *

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 . 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.

Chris Dunn - The Fishing Weatherman

The Fishing Weatherman Report for March 26, 2015
Here's this week's coastal weather forecast...

Gary Graham's Blog

Baja, Del Mar-style
If you missed out at the Fred Hall Long Beach Show, many of the same Baja folks – from Ensenada to the tip of Baja – will be in colorful display booths eager to share the latest news about their respective locations.

I will be at the show all four days. Stop by the International Game Fish Association (IGFA) booth next to Bill Boyce's booth by the front door and say hello.

THE DEL MAR SHOW will have its usual Baja flavor at some pretty fun booths, over four days, March 26-29. WON PHOTOS BY GARY GRAHAM

The Mexican Tourism Board will be represented by:

Marina Coral from Ensenada, BCS, MX, Fito Espinoza;

Marina Puerto Los Cabos from San Jose del Cabo, BCS, MX, Enrique Fernandez;

Marina La Paz, BCS, MX, Malcolm Shroyer;

Marina Puerto Escondido, BCS, MX, Enrique Salcedo;

Marina El Cid, Mazatlan, MX, Geronimo Cevallos;

Marina Riviera Nayarit, Nayarit, MX, Rafael Alcantara;

Marina Vallarta and Opequimar, Jalisco, MX, Carlos Verjan.

Secretaria de Pesca y Acuacultura de B.C:

Clark’s Outdoor Sporting Adventures

Clark’s Outdoor Sporting Adventures represents only hand-picked premier lodges in the best destinations in Baja … visited and endorsed by Roy Clark himself. Those include the Van Wormer Resorts and Pueblo Bonita in Los Cabos. Additionally, Clark hosts or co-hosts several tournaments. Visit their booth to learn about their 2015 Events.

Hotel Coral and Marina Discover an exclusive getaway in Baja California at Hotel Coral & Marina, only 75 miles south of San Diego. A 10-minute drive from Baja’s famous wine country, beautiful San Miguel Beach and vibrant downtown Ensenada, it is an oceanfront escape of unparalleled luxury, with Ensenada’s only World-Class Marina boasting 353 slips and shared access to the hotel’s five-star amenities. Cedros Adventures

Cedros Adventures, the first fishing resort established on Cedros Island, was founded by two tuna-spotting pilots, Adrian Ojeda and Tom Greene. Their vision created an American-style resort with attention to detail that has always been at the forefront.

Cedros Adventures offers three pangas modified with center-consoles, flat-surfaced platforms plus a 25-foot Mako center console boat, guided by professional captains with excellent knowledge of the local fishery. Cedros Adventures trips are all-inclusive (excluding gratuities and alcohol).

Cedros Outdoor Adventures

Cedros Outdoor Adventures U.S. Inc. is affiliated with Baja Islands Outfitters of Mexico. They offer the best of Baja with the highest service standards for the safe enjoyment of outdoor adventures.

Guests can enjoy the opportunity of visiting an exotic destination while pursuing a variety of outdoor activities: snorkeling, photography, hiking, mountain biking, animal and bird watching, fishing and eco tours; providing jobs for locals whenever possible, and helping to promote a diversified economy based on sustainable activities.

Cedros Outdoor Adventures offers $50 discounts to those who bring or pay their $600 deposits for the Cedros Island fishing trips of 2015. This is in addition to the $100 off on the regular price that they are offering to those who sign up before March 31. There are a limited number of these discounts.

Hotel Zam-Mar

Zam-Mar Cedros Fishing Destination Adventures can fly an individual traveler and groups to the island and have them fishing the same day. They offer fishing aboard 27- to 30-foot super pangas with lodging in the Hotel Zam-Mar. All meals included.

Rancho Leonero

In this land where mega-hotels with many rooms and much acreage are the benchmark by which hotels are judged, Rancho Leonero is an anomaly with its mere 34 rooms. Each is unique, in character with its own special view of surrounding rugged Baja Desert or shimmering Sea of Cortez; this hotel offers you a taste of Baja that you cannot experience in the hustle and bustle of larger hotels, where you become lost in the numbers. Here you can find your Baja home … a place you can return to year after year where you are treated as family.

Just far enough from Baja's tip inside the Sea of Cortez to offer you much calmer waters with little surf and limitless fishing opportunities that have intrigued visitors for years, Rancho boats target billfish and other offshore exotics. Dorado, roosterfish, sierra, bonito, skipjack and other middleweight species can often be hooked-up within minutes of departure from their pier. Drop by for their show specials.

Van Wormer Properties

Located in the East Cape region of Baja California Sur, and situated on Baja’s world-renowned Sea of Cortez, Hotels Palmas de Cortez, Playa del Sol and Villas de Cortez are known as some of the premier vacation and big game fishing spots in the world that consistently produce huge numbers of blue and striped marlin, sailfish, dorado, wahoo, yellowfin tuna, roosterfish and more.

A private dock is located in front of each resort, providing a quick and convenient way to board and depart on your fishing adventure. If phenomenal fishing, spectacular diving, kayaking, golfing or just relaxing poolside in the sunshine is for you, then you deserve the best the East Cape has to offer, which can be found at the Van Wormer Resorts.

They will be offering show specials that are the lowest rates of the year with up to 20% off on fishing packages. Visit their booth #223 during the show for more information.

Baja Bay of Dreams

Located at the pristine, practically undeveloped Bahia De Los Sueños, 35 miles Southeast of La Paz, B.C.S. They provide the ultimate aquatic-oriented outdoor adventure experience.

Guided by renowned fishermen Mike "Oso" McClune and Captain Adam Cargill, their 31-foot Ocean Master and 30-foot Ocean Runner center consoles with 35-plus-knot cruising speeds will get you to the south end of the island or anywhere else offshore, in minutes.

They also offer kayak rentals and guided kayak fishing excursions. Stand-up paddleboards, ATVs, camping gear and snorkeling equipment are also available to rent.

Accommodations are currently available in Agua Amarga, Las Ventanas and La Paz. Construction of the Baja Bay of Dreams Hotel and Muertos Sportfishing Center will be completed in 2016.

Baja Pirates Fishing Fleet

Baja Pirates boasts not only the largest fleet of owner/operated fishing boats in La Paz, but the only fleet of ALL-American-style fishing boats. They offer three-day to one-month vacations designed to satisfy every family member. Whether you are looking for conventional fishing, fly-fishing, spear fishing, snorkeling, diving, kayaking, golf or day tours in La Paz, Baja Pirates can arrange the perfect vacation package for your entire family.

Tailhunter International

Jonathan and Jill Roldan always draw a crowd looking for a quickie Baja fix to their festive palapa-covered booth. If you haven't visited them at the show before, you are in for a treat. They make it seem more like a party than a fishing show.

If you're looking for a Mexican vacation getaway alone, with someone special, or you just need to feel the warm sand underfoot and a bent rod in your hand, Tailhunter International is your answer. They will be on the main aisle just about in the middle of the middle! In a corner booth!

Pat McDonell's Blog

DFW discussion from Hall show on Vimeo
Del Mar show opens Thursday 


The Del Mar Fred Hall show begins tomorrow, March 26 Thursday, for a four-day run at the Fairgrounds. You can get all the details at and be sure to get the show program at the door as you enter. It is the biggest Del Mar show ever with 300 booths and more boats than in six or seven years, plus seminar and great shows. Look online for all the activities, seminars and exhibitor list.

For those who would like to get details and info before the show, the Hall show website and the program are online. The 24-page program produced by WON is at this link and has been set up so that anyone can view it digitally, not just WON print and digital edition subscribers who get it for free.

The link:


One aspect of the Long Beach show that was held March 4-8 was the DFW panel discussion, the second year the department brass has been on the Q&A firing line at the Hall show. If you missed it, and many of you did because 200 were there and tens of thousands attended the show, Angler Chronicles TV show (Fox Sports) and radio show producer and videographer – and a good friend of mine, Danny Jackson recorded and just posted a 30-minute video of the panel discussion at the request of show producer Bart Hall. It is very, very interesting to watch. And the drone footage of the outside and interior of the show as the video opens is just plan fantastic. Here is the link:

See you at the show in Del Mar. WON will have subscription booth with great gifts at the usual place just at your immediately left as you enter the Tackle Hall. I would suggest arriving early and staying until it closes each day. The hours are noon to 8 p.m, the first two days, and on Saturday it goes 10 to 8, and on Sunday 10 to 6 p.m.

Here is the link to the 24-page program we at WON produced for the show, and again, they are free at the door.

As a anorther reminder….

Author and WON Surf Fishing Editor Bill Varney will be giving his popular surf fishing seminars at the upcoming Fred Hall Show in Del Mar.  Bill's seminars will be located at the Mammoth Lakes Seminar stage on Thursday and Friday at 6pm and Saturday at 4pm.  Bill will be covering rod and reel combo's, rigging, baits and how to find fish at the beach.  Visit Bill in his booth near the stage where you can check out this year's newest surf fishing equipment.  As a show bonus, Bill will be offering his updated 3rd Edition ofSurf Fishing, The Light-Line Revolution for only $10 in his booth.



Catalina White Sea Bass

Preview: Catalina offers free Yamaha entry
$75 Early Bird Entry is also a deal this year ISLAND FEVER: Catalina White Seabass Championship May 16-17

To see the online 16-page flip-page preview tot he event (cover above) click on this link. Enjoy!

PREVIEW: Two-fish weigh-in new this year, with more time to fish, great prizes, paydowns to fifth, nine optionals and a great venue at Two Harbors



TWO HARBORS, Catalina Island — Get it on the calendar! The annual WON/Yamaha Catalina White Seabass Tournament at Two Harbors is slated for May 16-17 and there are no changes in schedule from last year when we had an earlier check-in and release, a flare gun start on both sides of the Isthmus and an all-islands format. More time to fish was appreciated, and the earlier release for teams after the short meeting was more relaxed and the flare gun start was exciting to be in and see from the start boat.

This year there are two exciting format changes, however. After always having a one-fish weigh-in for the overall, paying down to fifth place, you can weigh in TWO fish — any of the three eligible species of WSB, yellowtail and halibut. The nine optionals, $100, $200 and $300 for all three species for a total of 9 payouts) remains a one-fish weigh-in, with the usual 90 percent payback. There was more than $15,000 in those nine optional pots last year.

The flare gun start: Will again be an exciting start to the fishing!

What has also been added for 2015 along with the 2-fish weigh-in is the Yamaha $1,000 Big Fish Payout. You may not win the tourney with your big fish, but it will win the optional money (if you are entered there) and you’ll get that $1,000, and a beautiful Cousins rod, one of six to be given away that weekend.

And, there is a special early bird sign-up reduced fee. Any anglers who sign up by May 1 pay only $75. After May 1, the regular $100 per angler fee kicks in.

Why the 2-fish weigh-in this year? Why not? The minimum number of anglers on a team is two (no limit on how many anglers per team as always), and the limit on white seabass is one fish that time of year, so it is within the 1-WSB per person limit. It makes the tourney more of a skill game.

Last year, Team 17 on the Freeloader III, with buddies Jim Jameson and Nate Chisholm taking a 36.5-pound WSB and 19.6-pound yellowtail claimed the title and top money of $7,740. Six teams out of 38 participating shared over $20,000 and then there was the $15,000 in drawing prizes.

Some changes were made last year and will remain. In previous years check-in was three-hours later, the captains meeting was longer with lunch, and teams could leave as soon as they got to their boats. Last year check-in was two hours earlier, there was a half-hour meeting and a “shotgun” start on both sides of the island. The teams appreciated the extra time and the exciting start that was more fair.

This year the prize packages and gifts will be considerable. When teams arrive at Two Harbors they will be given events shirts and sponsor hats, a spool of fluorocarbon, Gamakatsu hooks, a team number, a set of Big Hammer plastics and a drawing tickets for a ton of items, ranging from Cousins rods, Avet (10) reels, Plano tackle boxes, two Options trips, Costa sunglasses and more. Much more.

Two Furuno combo units will be given away, one in the final drawing, the other in a Furuno Retail Drawing among those who bring receipts from WON supporting retailers. See the list in the related story. Also, there is also the annual Avet/Cousins Casting Contest during check-in. The winner at 10 a.m. before the quick Captains’ Meeting before the teams head off will receive a Cousins rod and Avet reel.

When the dust settles the next day and the weigh-ins are conducted and results tabulated before the BBQ awards ceremony, there will be some serious money doled out. The payouts are first place through fifth, starting with $5,000 for first, and then $1,500, $500, $300 and $200 for a total $7,500 payout, based on 225 anglers which is what usually attract if the weather and fishing at the islands is decent.

Let’s be clear about one thing: Unless Catalina slips into the sea, we will not postpone, move or cancel the event. So don’t call us if the weather kicks up. Catalina is a sort of marine weather eddy anyway, and projected weather patterns for the SoCal Bight and outer islands are often no applicable. Plus, there is the lee side of the island.

Anyway, there’s some serious money up for grabs with the overall money, $7,500, and $15,000 to $20,000i n the optionals. Then there are the drawings both days (most on Sunday at the awards
BBQ, the Avet/Cousins Casting Contest Saturday morning, and the barbecue on Sunday.


An abbreviated version of the entry form. Mail it or fax it. Information is below.

To download a full size entry form CLICK HERE.

2015 White Seabass Championship Schedule


Check-in 7 a.m. to 10:30 a.m,:Teams receive wristbands, welcome bags with product, drawing tickets, team numbers at two Harbors Avet/Costa/Cousins Casting Contest 7 a.m, to 10. Finals begin at 9:45. No exceptions, so cast early.

Captains meeting: Rules and four high-end drawings starts at 10 a.m, Teams. Coffee and bagels will be available. After half-hour meeting 10-10:30 a.m., teams are released for start area at 10:30. Important:

Flare Gun Start: At 10:30, all teams head to outside the marina areas to official start boats with teams holding up those numbers as they go by the official start boat to check in. Do Not fish yet: Theflare gun start is willbe between 11and 11:30 a.m.To weigh in fish, you must check in at start boat by showing that number.

Boundaries: Note: all islands and coast are open to fishing


Weigh-in: 10 to noon. Two fish (any combination of WSB, YT or Halibut) can be weighed in for aggregate weigh for overall standings. Biggest single fish in the optionals.

Awards:BBQ begins at noon or at beach after weigh-in.Awards starts at 1 p.m, or as soon as we tabulate results.

Note: 90 percent of the drawings will be conducted on Sunday.


How to sign up, deadlines, contacts

It’s the same as any year. There are three ways, but be aware of the free Yamaha entry deal, and the May 1 early bird deadline, and the April 17 deadline for personal checks, and this important part: No optionals can be paid by credit card at any time, only team entry.

1)Online at under the WON Events tab on the home page. Click, scroll down to the WSB area. You cannot sign up for optionals by credit card. Just your entry. If you sign up by May 1, it’s $75 a person. $100 after that. If you have a Yamaha powered boat in the event, cut your entry fee by one person’s fee, $75 or $100. If you enter by credit card online at, you must fill out and fax your team entry info, attention Denise, at (949) 366-0804.

2)2) Enter by mail. With a personal check or bank check. Fill out the form, and mail it. The address is on the entry form. Make checks out to Western Outdoors. With a personal or certified bank check, you CAN add optionals and pay us with that check. (Personal checks are no longer accepted after April 17). Add up your team members at $75 or $100 each, add your optional amounts and put that total on the check.

3)Pay at Two Harbors at Catalina at check-in. $100 a person, optionals by cash only. No credit cards. Again, ne free entry for the team if you are fishing on a Yamaha powered boat.

For information: email denise at, or director Pat McDonell at or call him at (949) 366-0256. Yamaha free entry! That’s right


One angler on a Yamaha-powered boat competing in the event gets a free entry, a $75 or $100 discount for being a Yamaha customer

The Western Outdoor News annual Catalina White Seabass Championship is title sponsored by Yamaha, and in addition to providing $3,000 toward the first place prize, and $1,000 for the BIG FISH PRIZE for the biggest overall white seabass, halibut or yellowtail, they are also kicking in a free entry to any owner of a Yamaha powered boat entered in the tourney.


This offer does not include, a kicker engine, but must be the main engines.So what the means is that a two-man team can compete for as little at $75 if they are fishing in a Yamaha powered boat and they sign up early.


Drawings, special awards, casting contest, early bird discount, optional payouts, $1,000 big fish award from Yamaha, overall paydowns to fifth place and more at the new venue

TWO HARBORS -- The ways to win at the WON/YamahaWhite Seabass Championship Catalina kick in the first time you arrive for check-in at Two Harbors on Saturday, May 16 at 7 a.m. and it just keeps getting better the longer the event goes on.

There’s more ways to win money an prizes than every before, a better early bird deal on signing up, a free entry for a Yamaha powered team, a better venue, a better schedule, more freedom to fish the areas you want and some great drawing prizes.

The event boasts an all-islands, all-coast format, with way more fishing time for inshore teams or those heading to islands, an earlier check-in, an exciting flare gun start, a $1,000 Yamaha drawing for the single biggest fish, and paydowns to fifth place plus nine optionals of $100, $200 and $300 for WSB, yellowtail and halibut with a 90 percent payback. Plus there’s prizes, plus a BBQ lunch, an early bird discount on the entry and a tackle shop dealer incentive drawing for a $1,000 Furuno combo unit.

The payouts for top teams participating in the optionals and overall are often $15,000 to $25,000. It could be much higher this year.

So, here’s the ways to win!

-Be the champ! Overall paydowns from first place to fifth for biggest. Two-fish aggregate with WSB, yellowtail or halibut eligible.

-The champions will do some serious damage. They will, walk away with first place money, approximately $5,000. That amount is based on 225 anglers participating.

-Nine optionals, all three eligible species of yellowtail, WSB and halibut, $100, $200 and $300 with a 90 percent payback. Single fish.

-$1,000 Yamaha outboards Big Fish award:Single biggest fish earns a grand. And Cousins is kicking in a beautiful WSB-action rod.

Grand Prize Drawing: In addition to regular drawings for Avet reels,Costa Sunglasses, Promar nets, Cousins rods and much more, there is the fantastic drawing for Furuno's new Chart Plotter/Fish Finder GP1670 F unit worth $1,000. Just bring us a receipt for $25 or more in purchases during the months of April and May before the event from participating tackle shops in SoCal, and you’re are in a drawing for the Furuno unit. The receipt with your name on it is your drawing ticket.

Another unit from Furuno will be the grand prize drawing prize among all anglers!

-- PIER Institute is a sponsor of the tourney once again, and will offering not only free event t-shirts, but a $5,000 award to the first tourney team during the event that brings in a fish that has one of their electronic tags.

- Avet/Cousins Casting Contest. The champ wins the rod/reel combo with about $700 retail. 7 to 9:45 Saturday on the beach. You must cast by 9:45 to be eligible.


Hubbs-Sea World, PIER Institute again support WSB fishery and tournament

Help the two programs collect more scientific data from wire and electronic tags while fishing in the tourney

Hubbs-Sea World and PIER Institute, leaders in the scientific community in research on the white seabass, will be again sponsors of the Catalina event.

PIER Institute (see their informational ad in this supplement) is providing the event t-shirts to the first 130 anglers to sign up and will pay $5,000 as a reward to the first electronic tag to be turned in at the tourney. So look for them. They are surgically implanted buy are visible.

Hubbs-Sea World will again be at the Pier at Two Harbors, scanning fish brought to the pier by teams. They are looking for the binary wire tags in the gill plate area before being sent to the dozen grow-out facilities.

Also, if teams do not have theior fish heads scanned, they drop off the heads at a number of coastal businesses and they will be checked for the wire tags. This information is critical to the white sea bass hatchery program.


History of the white seabass hatchery and growout system: The OREHP began in 1982 with legislation (Assembly Bill 1414) authored by California Assemblyman Larry Stirling. Initially, research was focused on California halibut and white seabass; however, research eventually focused exclusively on white seabass because of the depressed condition of the stock and its higher value to both the recreational and commercial fisheries.

The OREHP is funded through the sale of ocean enhancement stamps on CDFW sport and commercial fishing licenses. The stamps are required for all saltwater anglers fishing south of Point Arguello, California (Santa Barbara County). Additional funding comes from the Federal Sportfish Restoration Act (SFRA).

It is managed by CDFW with the assistance of an advisory panel consisting of academic and management agency scientists, representatives of both commercial and recreational fishing groups, and the aquaculture industry. Members of the panel provide policy direction, review research proposals, and recommend allocation of funds for OREP. 


-Teams are made up of two or more anglers. No Limit.

-Fishable areas are all islands. The coast is off-limits

-Biggest aggregate weight of 2 fish wins in overall, 1st through 5th place, and biggest single fish counts in each of the 9 optional jackpots. Overall (1st to 5th) eligible fish are white seabass, halibut and yellowtail.

-Single biggest fish among all three species in the tourney wins $1,000 Yamaha Big Fish Contest.

-Bring only two fish to the scale on the beach unless you are in the optionals.

-Fish are weighed only once.

-Weigh-in is from 10 to noon or until all waiting teams have been logged in at the scale.

-Checks will be issued by WON accounting a week to two weeks after the event, the amount for each angler determined by percentages agreed to on those forms at the awards ceremony

-Entries are $100 per angler. $75 before May 2. All signups, additions and optionals must be paid in cash at Catalina. All anglers on all boats MUST be registered and be paid up as a team member -- including charter captains and crew. No exceptions.

-All decisions by the tournament director are final, and he has the right to refuse any signups, and the right to disqualify any team for verbal or physical abuse of staff, or breaking the rules.

-All teams must check in, and show their number to the staff start boat before the 11 a.m. to 11:15 flare gun starts on both harbors (Cat and the Isthmus (Two Harbors).

-No team may have a white seabass aboard their boats unless its fins are clipped.

-All teams who win money are subject to a possible lie detector test after the event, and all monies will be withheld from any affected teams until the results of the test are known.

-All team must sign a waiver, and must be aware that the dangers of fishing in boats are inherent, and that all decisions concerning safety are personal choices. It is up to all teams to adhere to all safety regulations, and to make proper personal choices

-Teams can bring fish to the scale on the beach from 10 to noon Sunday from either harbor. The tournament is not responsible for providing shuttle service at Cat Harbor.

-Teams are responsible for knowing the schedule and all rules.

 This "long version" of the entry form can be found in Western Outdoor News or by going to the home page of this website and clicking on the WON Events tab, and then going to the tourney site. Remember, May 1 is the Early Bird Deadline for the $75 fee, and if you fish with a Yamaha-powered boat, you get one free entry.  For example,  if there are two of you, and you sign up before May 1 and you are on a Yamaha boat, your team entry fee is just $75. After May 1, it is $100. Note that on the entry form, that you are on a Yamaha boat. 

Director, Pat McDonell

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