Saturday, August 23, 2008

Another great week of surf fishing with clear water, little wind and a small South swell.

This week produced another good week of surf fishing up and down the coast. We had some great reports from San Diego's Mission Bay, Solano Beach and Carlsbad of legal halibut and corbina caught on sand crabs, ghost shrimp and 2"plastic grubs.

In Orange and Los Angeles County the corbina fishing remained good with a decent number of fish being caught and many more seen. Orange County this week produced some nice corbina, yellowfin croaker, perch and a few big spotfin croaker.

The only negative being the large amount of kelp in the surf line. Other than that nuisance, the water has been very clear, with temps in the 70-73degree range. The winds have been light with a very small swell. Beginning yesterday we saw an increase in the swell from the South. This should build through the weekend and bring in more clear warm water and build some inshore holes that will help to improve fishing.

One thing I notice every year is how corbina, at this time in their season, begin to eat less sand crabs and begin to concentrate on other baits. This past week the best baits have been ghost shrimp and mussel. I've seen great success in just the last few days with these baits. They are best fished on the carolina rig 20-80 feet from shore. Use a 3/4 to 1 ounce sliding sinker to keep your bait on the bottom. These baits also seem to work best when cast out and allowed to rest on the bottom. Keep your line tight to the sinker and retrieve your line as it begins to become slack.

You can find fresh mussel on most rock areas and docks that are near moving water. You'll only need to collect about 20. Place them in a bucket overnight and they'll open slightly and be a lot easier to open once you get to the beach. Ghost shrimp can be harvested on your own, although few do this, or they can be purchased at a local tackle shop like Big Fish Tackle, in Seal Beach. Both work great for bait and will give you the chance to catch a corbina, perch or spotfin croaker.

This week I concentrated on collecting sand worms. These worms live 12" -36" below sand and about 10 feet below the high tide mark. Dig them up at low tide making a hole about the diameter of a trash can lid. Once you see one, as they move quickly through the sand, grab its tail lightly and dig around the body. They are about the length of a pencil and look a lot like a bloodworm. Both green and peach in color they work great on the carolina rig for surf fish.

Well, next week looks like another great surf fishing week as the summer now begins to wind down. The sand crabs are beginning to leave the beach so now is your last chance to catch them for bait. By the end of September or beginning of Oct. most will be gone for the winter. I would suggest using an assortment of baits this upcoming week and you'll have the best chance of catching fish.

We have some great tides coming up this week and now that we are past the full moon fishing should get better every day. With calm winds, warm water and a small swell forecast for this upcoming week I'm really looking forward to getting down there and doing some damage!

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