The seabass bite that happened on this week’s full moon reassured me that no matter how strange the fishing has been over the last few years, some things are happening on a normal schedule. As to those seabass, they bit really well in multiple areas for a couple of days and while the bite has dropped off a bit with the waning of the moon, there are still fish to be caught. The most consistent bites have been coming from Ventura County where both overnight and full day trips have been scoring both seabass and yellowtail.
There are some fish biting close to home and they are likely to get a lot of pressure over the weekend, so if you want to fish seabass in uncrowded waters, I’d suggest jumping on an overnight trip. The bite isn’t wide open but you’ll have a legitimate shot at catching a fish. Even if you don’t the big rockfish are biting so the fall back option isn’t all that bad. Speaking of legitimate shots at catching fish, overnight boats out of LA and Orange County landings have been catching seabass and yellows as well. The areas these boats are fishing have been varying by day due to weather, boat traffic and other factors, so my advice is to just jump on a boat and go fishing instead of worrying about who’s fishing where.
There’s a good bite happening on quality rockfish up and down the coast right now for boats that can get live squid. I fished out of Long Beach on Sunday and had good fishing, including this big sheephead. You can read my full report here. We’ve got decent weather forecast for the weekend, so private boaters should grab some squid from the receiver and go catch some rockfish.
Sportboats have been getting in on the rockfish action as well. I spoke to Captain Mitch Christensen of the Southern Cal, who recently began running half day trips out of Long Beach Sportfishing. He reported excellent fishing for a mix of big reds, sheephead and lingcod on his half day trips this week. On some trips, the boat has been fishing shallower part of the day and catching quality sand bass and calicos. The boat is running 10 to 4 during the week and double half day trips on the weekends. The boat recently moved from Pierpoint Landing to their new home, so please pay them a visit and help them establish their new run.
The early season bluefin bite continued this week with fish to 200-pounds caught.
There were several fish over the 100-pound mark caught by 3/4-day and overnight boats this week, but the largest one this season was this 209-pound monster caught aboard the Oceanside 95 on Wednesday. This fish, along with most of the bigger fish that have been caught this year, came on a flat fall jig fished deep on heavy tackle. Captains are recommending rigging the 250-gram Flat Fall jigs with 100-pound fluorocarbon leader and fishing them on at least 60-pound test main line. This may sound like overkill considering most of the tuna being caught are less than 30-pounds, but if you’re lucky enough to hang one of the big boys you’ll be glad you have it. A lot of these fish are coming off sonar schools so private boaters may be better off leaving their boat at home and jumping on a sport boat for now as the schools can be tough to find without proper electronics.