California Boating Card


Southern CA Saltwater

Local bass spring into action, bluefin snap too

BY MERIT McCREA/WON Staff WriterPublished: May 16, 2018

Bluefin from big to bigger to too big,
top fish a 181 pounder

SAN DIEGO — The best news of the week was the local bite transition to bass, as the local weeds went on the snap for the 1/2-day fleet. Offshore the bite, as expected, lit off with the weekend's better water.

Saturday the crew of the Tribute reported, "Lots and lots of action today on good sized bluefin, unfortunately the majority found their freedom going 8 for probably 40 on these slugs."

killetechniqueKILLER TECHNIQUE — Putting the rail wood to a straight up and down bluefin aboard the Pacific Queen.

However, some folks were either a little better prepared for the action than others or simply connected with less ornery fish.

Capt. Drew Card on the Pacific Queen had this to say Saturday, "What a great way to start off our 2018 offshore campaign. We ended up with 20 quality bluefin tuna, including one that weighed in at 181 pounds. We are a definite go again tonight with just a few passengers signed up. We’ll see you on the boat!" The 181 pounder came on a Flat-Fall.

And aboard the New Lo-An, "6.5 hour drift yesterday on this 40- to 80-pound bluefin. Our biggest fish was 71 pounds dressed. We gill and gut every tuna to ensure sashimi quality. And don't forget to ask about Five Star Fish Processing for the best end product. Thanks again guys, and excellent work! We leave again tonight for another 1.5 day with a light load."

They wrapped it up with 19 beautiful bluefin in the hold. The day prior yellowtail were the fish at the top of the list, with limits for 19.

killerresultsKILLER RESULTS — A big gear bluefin on the PQ's deck.

Daily Double owner, Capt. Fred Huber called in to report on the great local bass bite that popped over last few days, starting Wednesday when just 12 anglers caught nearly 100 bass, with 23 over the 14-inch mark. There were lots of small barracuda around in the local weeds too. Huber said "the (count) really reflects how fast the action is."

Most of the bite came on fly-lined baits, anchovy and sardine, on 15- to 20-pound mono and no. 2 live bait hooks.

Looking down towards the Coronado Islands and Rock Pile area the yellowtail bite was on. Wednesday the Mission Belle turned in 61 yellows and 3 barracuda for 17 fishing that day. Most of that bite was on bait.

WON writer Pat McDonell reported WFO bird schools and an iron bite down there Monday, belting limits and into C&R mode inside of an hour while fishing from a private boat. He noted no other boaters in the area at the time, just him, a friend and wide open yellows on the iron.

Of course the offshore yellowtail bite continued strong, with the standout score being on the San Diego when 33 anglers pulled 159 and a pair of bonito. That impressive score was the result of having enough people aboard to sack that many fish. The Tribute had 60 fish for 12 anglers or limits, and added 3 bluefin tuna too.

BENT ON THE bow of the Tribute, of 40 or so hookups, only 8 would see the steel and deck.

DEAD ON DECK — This was one bluefin that made it aboard the boat Tribute Saturday.

DAILY DOUBLE CALICO on tap in the local kelps as waters warmed. The San Diego 1/2-day fleet transitioned from the deeps to shallows this past week.

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