One of the first things I did this year was to beat feet to a local soprting goods store and buy a two-pole, anywater, any species, California Fishing License.
While fishing license fees in CA are now greater than $50 for any waters, any species, I’m not the least bit ashamed to use my status as a disabled combat veteran to snag a discounted rate that saves me about 50 percent over retail pricing.
It’s a pan that works for me and few things relieve my stress more than seeing 20 to 50 yards of monofilament running out from the tip of my rod into any body of water.
My goal in the next three weeks is to hurl some baited hooks into the sandy beach floor up and down the Southern California coast.
My first stop will aboard Camp Pendleton where i’ve almost always been able to put California halibut and surf perch into the five gallon bright orange Home Depot container repurposed as my beach bucket. The two places I fish at Camp Pendleton are Las Pulgas beach and the confluence of Santa Margarita Creek and the Pacific Ocean.
As long as you have the foresense to buy your bait (typically frozen anchovies or quid) before you head to the base’s fishing holes, you can expect moderate success by fishing the tides and slack water.
Natural baits found at nearly all SOuthern California beaches with rocky shores are small crabs,and sand fleas
My beach rig is a nine-foot, two piece pole and medium Shimano spinning reel loaded with 8-pound test. The business end of my tackle includes: four-pound leader, 1.5-ounce pyramid weights and number six or smaller snelled hooks.
I like to get my rig just beyond breaking waves.I always use a sand spike for my rod and tag my line with a small bell. The Beaches of Camp pendleton may be some of the most under fished waters in SOuthern California and they’re worth the time and gas to try (as long as you bring your own bait, tackle, drinks and a valid fishing license).I also recommend a tape measure o check the size of any flat fish you catch.
If you're in doubt, put it back in the ocean.
I regularly take four to six pound California halibut from Las Pulgas Beach and seldom fail to have at least five tasty perch in my bucket when I come home.
There are other under fished venues here in Southern California; the north boundary of Crystal Cove State Park in Orange County and the mouths of any of the many lagoons here in San Diego County.
I didn’t get my lines very wet last year, but by this summer I expect to have fished from San Diego County, north to Zuma Beach in Malibu.
SO if you see a somewhat crazed fisherman in a tie dyed shirt, headphones jammed in his ears and badly singing along with the Brothers Doobie or Allman, don’t be afraid to stop and let me see your catch.
And lest I forget, here's the tastiest flat fish on the Pacific coast-- the very yummy sand dab.
Waiting for tight lines and rod tip bumps in 2015; Jim Forbes