Simplicity On The Sand – Surf Fishing Report

Depending on what kind of mood I’m in, I look for and get different things out of going fishing.  Sometimes I want loud and crazy.  Sometimes I get a kick out of the competitive aspect with my buddies on the boat.

The last couple weeks, I’ve been dealing with some family health issues.  I’ve never been one to do well dealing with medical stuff anyway…

So I’ve been self medicating with small doses of saltiness

WTG Daniel!

I got invited on a free 2-day tuna trip this weekend, but I passed.  Too much going on and I didn’t want to be out-of-pocket that long.

Instead, I rode a few halfies where I could sneak them in.  I rode a double on the Dolphin and got into a some good calico fishing with a few buddies.  My friend Brian’s son Daniel (right) fish shamed me with a couple nice black and red sheephead which was good fun to see.

I jumped on the City of Long Beach for a PM ride with cuda and calico on the menu.

And I’ve been doing some surf fishing here and there.

I happened to be up early on Saturday morning and decided to visit a spot I hadn’t been to in awhile, but has hosted some memorable moments for me like the Instant Karma story and my first ever corbina.

I’ve been really trying to target halibut lately, but I just wanted to have some fun and pull on a few fish.  I decided to see what was biting near shore and go basic.

I setup up at my car…Carolina rig, half ounce of weight, about a 16-inch leader of 4# fluorocarbon, and terminated with a small circle hook.  I put on a red Gulp worm to start.  I got to the shoreline with about 3 hours of incoming tide on the clock.  First spot I picked was loaded with crab, but I fished the worm anyway.  Then I saw it, a corbina in the water that took a sniff on the worm and passed.

I got something for you

You didn’t even need to look for sand crabs.  They were so thick I could feel them under my feet.

Corbina are the ultimate stealth setup fish.  Some guys will use just a splitshot (or even fly-line) when sight hunting them, so I dropped down to a 1/4 ounce slider, and pinned on a fat sand crab.  I casted to the side, out of my shadow, and it wasn’t long before I coaxed a bite.  It was a nice one.  So much fun to encounter a fish on the beach that can pull drag and put a bend in your line.

After that first one, it got really good for awhile.  At the height of the action, I was mesmerized by the number of “beans” I saw in the water.  Wolf packs charged up the beach with each wave surge.  I have yet to catch a redfish, but I’ve watched a bunch of videos of guys sight fishing them in Florida and the Gulf Coast.  Seeing all the corbs tailing in the water, sometimes within inches from where I stood, reminded me of that kind of fishing and was absolutely thrilling.

surf fishingI fished until just after high tide peaked…

“Yeah, this is dying out…just one more cast.”

I emptied my pocket of the crabs I’d collected and watched them burrow back in the sand.  Good karma.  I pinned on one more.  I’m glad I did.  Ended the day with my first ever shovelnosed shark aka guitarfish.  What a fun day!  Time alone and some biters on the sand was just the ticket to clear my head and put a smile on my face.  I highly recommend it.

Good luck if you get out there.

Shovelnose shark, aka guitarfish
Joe Sarmiento is the founder and primary writer of the So Cal Salty blog. The blog covers saltwater fishing, primarily aboard the many sportfishing boats of Southern California. In addition to writing his blog, Joe's writing has appeared in Western Outdoor News, The Log and Griffin Media. Joe is ...