Fishing Notes / Dan Stanton : Weather Has Been on the Chilly Side, but Sport Fishing Is Still Plenty Hot

The chilly weather has had no effect on excellent catches.

Once again squid seem to have the lead role in fishing success.

Santa Monica Bay continues to be the hot spot for halibut. The Spitfire from Marina del Rey Sportfishing accounted for 57 over the weekend.

The Pacifica and Aztec from Long Beach Sportfishing returned Monday from a 2-day trip to San Nicholas Island to check out the area in preparation for winter rock cod trips.


Both boats had the 15-fish limit that included lings, cows and a variety of bottom dwellers.

The highlight of the trip was the remarkable bluefin tuna showing up alongside the boats.

However, both boat captains said the fish, averaging 500 pounds, could not be caught by any of the anglers.

Catalina Island’s blue perch bite is wide open and anglers can catch limits. Most party boats move so that anglers can catch other species, but the perch attack the squid and anglers have to cast out or go to the bottom fast.


The island’s sea bass bite has slowed, but there have been impressive yellowtail catches.

At Horseshoe Kelp, calico bass that occasionally slump at this time of year have been providing action, with anglers catching six legals per rod. Whitefish and blue perch fill out the limits.

Fishing from their 20-foot boat the Zig Zag, Fred and Irene Barton of San Pedro were anchored near the Rockpile catching sculpin and whitefish.

Using 12-pound test line and live squid, Irene Barton hooked up and said: “It couldn’t be a sculpin. This has to be a big brute. It just won’t move off the bottom.”

Letting out more line as the fish moved toward the bow, she was able to reel in only a few yards of line at a time--when it snapped.

The small boat started to swing and Barton checked the anchor line to see if it had broken loose. She started pulling the anchor and found it was not easy to move; something was wrapped around the rope.

When the anchor came in sight, wrapped around the rope and hook was a white sea bass embedded against the chain. It weighed in at 14 1/2 pounds.

King Harbor Marlin Club anglers have been landing good-sized fish.


Frank Matsuhari on a 2-day trip to Mexican waters returned to his Gardena home with 14 yellowfin tuna, and all weighed more than 100 pounds.

Don Haynes of Hermosa Beach, fishing aboard the Fisherette, checked into the club with a 27-pound, 13-ounce halibut he caught in Santa Monica Bay.

South Bay Catches

Jim Rodman of Lomita, fishing aboard the Outerlimits on a 2-day trip at the Cortez, caught a limit of rockfish and then hooked the whopper of the week, a 34-pound yellowtail.

Ernie Aguilar of Carson, aboard the First String at Catalina, won the jackpot when he brought up a 25-pound halibut from the bottom.

Bill Workman of West Los Angeles, on the Pacer, tossed a squid and landed a 24-pound white sea bass.

Bill Barlane of San Pedro, fishing aboard the half-day boat Matt Walsh, won a jackpot with his 16 1/2-pound sheepshead.

Al Weston of Santa Monica aboard the Spitfire caught a limit of halibut and won the jackpot with a 15-pounder.


Fish Reports

At Marina del Rey Sportfishing: The Spitfire had a limit of halibut with 57 going into the sacks with 6 sand bass.

The Happyman fished the bay and chalked up 55 sand bass and 18 halibut.

The Betty O worked shallow rocks and returned with 175 red rock cod and a cow cod.

At Redondo Sportfishing: The Sea Spray fished Rocky Point and anglers sacked 54 sculpin, 46 bonito and 26 rockfish.

The Redondo Special on an afternoon trip to Torrance Beach chalked up 174 sculpin, 52 sand bass and 11 bonito.

The Blackjack fished Catalina Island for 150 perch, 95 calico bass, 8 sheepshead and 3 whitefish.

The barge Isle of Redondo had a weekend count of 165 bonito, 275 mackerel, 24 rockfish and 20 bass.

At 22nd Street Landing: The First String fished the west end of Catalina and anglers using squid caught 250 blue perch and 53 calico bass, with 1 black sea bass released.

The Freedom fished Catalina and anglers caught 63 calico bass, 95 blue perch and 2 halibut.

At L.A. Harbor Sportfishing: The Sportking limited out with 220 blue perch, 55 calico bass, 10 rockfish and 6 sheepshead to 10 pounds.

The Top Gun returned from Catalina with 250 blue perch, 53 calico bass and 5 sheepshead.

The Outerlimits tried San Clemente Island and chalked up 135 calico bass and 15 sheepshead. Several big yellowtail hooked but broke tackle.

The Annie B barge had a weekend count of 1,541 kingfish, 1,231 queenfish, 300 smelt, 16 sculpin and 3 sand bass.

At Long Beach Sportfishing: The Victory worked Catalina and anglers caught 221 blue perch, 135 bonito, 61 calico bass and 11 sheepshead to 10 pounds.

The Pacifica on a 2-day trip to San Nicholas Island caught a limit of 600 rock cod, plus 50 cows and 40 lingcod.

The Aztec returned from San Nicholas Island with a limit of rock cod plus 15 lingcod but failed to land any of the big tuna.

The Southern Cal on a half-day trip to the oil rigs found the lingcod, with 25 going into the sacks plus 67 calico bass and 11 whitefish.

The El Dorado fished Catalina and anglers sacked 226 blue perch, 45 calico bass and 18 bonito.

Freshwater Notes: Paul Saito of Torrance, fishing Irvine Lake, caught a limit of trout with the largest weighing 9 pounds.

Harold Veda of Gardena fished Castaic Lake using mudsuckers and landed a 9 1/2-pound catfish.