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Fish Bite Going Into Windy Weekend

The bluefin are still biting. So are the yellowtail at the Channel Islands. Oh, and the calicos at Clemente and the sand bass on the beach. Overall, the fish bite this week has been pretty damned good by January standards, but that’s about to change.

This image shows the wind forecast for midday Saturday. The yellow stuff between the coast and Catalina shows 22-knots. The red stuff between Catalina and San Clemente is calling for 28-knots. That’s some serious wind and it’s blowing out of the direction that usually causes the water to roll over.

Things look a lot better on Sunday morning, but some damage will definitely have been done on the offshore scene. Things stay somewhat calm for the inner waters through next week but Clemente has a forecast of steady 15 to 20-knots through Friday. If I had to guess, that’s going to have a seriously negative effect on the bluefin bite down south. The extremely long range forecast can be hit or miss but right now they’re calling for strong offshore winds by next weekend.

There are a lot of yellowtail at the Channel Islands right now but they aren’t biting that well. My friend Captain Mitch Christensen took a day off from running the City of Long Beach to fish aboard the Aloha Spirit on Wednesday and was lucky enough to catch two of the six fish boated for the trip. Both fish were in the 25-pound class and were caught on the surface iron. According to a report the fish were up boiling around all morning and eleven fish were hooked. The area that the fish are biting in is about as protected as you can get up that way but the wind is probably going to put the bite off for a couple days. The weather looks a little more fishable up there by early next week so if you’re thinking about heading up, I’d keep an eye on the forecast and check with the landing to make sure they’ve got a boat online.

If you do want to take a shot at fishing on Sunday, I’d jump on a local 1/2 or 3/4-day trip. The Spitfire out of Marina Del Rey Sportfishing has been getting good scores on bass, sculpin and the occasional triggerfish all week and the bay is somewhat protected from the strong northwest wind that is going to blow on Saturday. As for me, I’m going to stay home and do battle with the tackle hoard that’s threatening to burst out of my garage.

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Erik Landesfeind is BD's Southern California Editor and has over 30 years of experience saltwater fishing for a range of species in both California and Mexican waters. Erik is also an active freelance writer and the author of the weekly column So Cal Scene, which BD publishes every Friday. In So Cal Scene, Erik keeps all of the BD readers up to date on what's biting in Southern California. Erik divides his fishing time on local boats, long-range trips and Mexico excursions. For the past eight years, Erik has been competing in the SWBA (Saltwater Bass Anglers) tournament series and has multiple tournament victories to his credit. His sponsors include Batson Enterprises / Rainshadow Rods, Robalo Boats, Tilly's Marine, Abu/Garcia, Penn Reels, Navionics, Raymarine, MC Swimbaits, Uni-Butter Fishing Scent and Bladerunner Tackle.