The Pot of Gold Halibut Derby gets rolling at Long Beach Sportfishing on Wednesday January 16 and will run through March 10 with a Fish-Off for the grand prize on Saint Patrick’s Day, March 17. The trips will run Wednesday through Sunday on the Native Sun and cost $60. The $60 fee not only includes passage, bait and crew but it makes you eligible for weekly prizes as well as the final cash prize which in the past has been several thousand dollars.
Last year was one of the best halibut fishing years in a decade. David Akamine form Torrance caught the year’s biggest flatfish with a 39.20-pound beauty. In 2012, there were several multiple flatfish days including Sunday, February 26 when 14 legal halibut were taken on a single trip.
One of the keys to catching halibut may seem obvious but is one that many anglers ignore and that is to keep your bait on the bottom. “If there is a lot of wind and current and you need 8-ounces or more weight; use it,” said Akamine. To get in on this great derby, you can call 562 432 8993 or go to www.LongBeachSportfishing.com .
The clock is ticking on the 2012 rockfish season as the end is in sight. On January 1, the Southern California rockfish season closes for 2-months. This has been one of the best years in recent memory for the tasty bottom dwellers. Both in terms of the size of the fish taken as well as the numbers.
“It has truly been a spectacular year,” said Victory skipper Mike Bleu out of Pierpoint Landing. “We’ve had limits (10 fish per angler) on numerous days and the fish have been fat.” Captain Andy Siratt of the Enterprise out of Long Beach Marina Sportfishing agrees. “We have caught fish locally that you normally see out at San Clemente or San Nicolas Islands,” said Siratt. “Our passengers have been able to catch big beautiful vermilion rockfish, salmon grouper, lingcod and more.”
Art Soriano was on the Enterprise yesterday braving wet and cold weather but it paid off. Soriano took his limit with a combination of nice whitefish, sculpin and other fine eating bottom grabbers with Captain Frank Savino at the helm.
If you are looking for an explanation for what has made 2012 so prolific, Don Ashley from Pierpoint Landing has an answer. “We have had two straight years, prior to this year of extremely cool water,” said Ashley. “Rockfish thrive in these conditions.”
Looking for a new way to cook that tuna? The Long Range vessel Polaris Supreme has just put together a myriad of different recipes so that you can prepare your tuna and other seafood dishes in a different way every day of the year. Just go to http://tinyurl.com/a2tc9t2.
Wintertime surf-fishing action has been excellent recently. As water temperatures cool, barred perch have become the staple. There is still a chance for a halibut, corbina, yellowfin croaker and even a striper if you can imagine that. There have been several striped bass taken this month from the Santa Monica Bay to Huntington Beach.
More times than not you will be catching barred perch and using light line is essential when fishing bait or grubs. Pete Wilkowski from Just Fishing By Pete in Redondo Beach says that 4-6 pound test will catch your more fish. “Anglers fishing lighter line just plain do better,” said Wilkowski.
Philip Friedman Jr. took a nice barred perch on chrome Krocodile off Surfside on Wednesday in windy, rainy conditions. Bob Osborn took a perch that weighed 3-pounds as well as a fat corbina recently also off Surfside.
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