BIG BARRACUDA SCHOOL HITS SOUTHLAND WATERS
Malibu Pier Opened to Public for First Time
Bass Fishing Good Off Point Dume
BY FRANK M. BOCKWAY
A run of exceptionally big barracuda is giving salt-water anglers a run for their tackle this week off the Santa Monica coast and along the south coast, the fish in many instances weighing up to fifteen pounds.
The big scooters and the opening to the public for the first time of the Malibu pier provided the big events found in the Times’ weekly survey of salt-water fishing conditions.
The Malibu pier, located about twelve miles north of Santa Monica, was opened on July 1, a barge being anchored a short distance away and two live-bait boats leaving the pier on a daily schedule, one boat making half-day trips.
The pier is close to the great kelp beds that lie along the Malibu shore beds and offer excellent bass and halibut angling.
A small fee is assessed anglers who wish to fish from the pier. Last Sunday found the pier quite crowded and many halibut being caught. The two boats carried capacity loads, likewise the barge. Barracuda constituted the big catches made from the live-bait boats.
Boats making the trip to Point Dume continued to find good bass fishing off that well know location. The big barracuda were being caught at a number of places in Santa Monica Bay.
We’ll say this for the anglers this summer – they’re getting out in larger crowds than ever known before, and for a majority of the days have not been going out in vain. It has been one of the best fishing seasons in ten years.
In Catalina Island waters, the big barracuda were taking live bait with a will, anglers trolling with jigs not having near the success as those using sardines and anchovies.
Only a few yellowtail were taken in the island waters, but farther south, down around Newport, more success at yellowtail fishing was had.
Due to heavy ground swells, surf fishing was poor at a number of favourite locations, but good, despite the swells at other beaches. In the surf south of Belmont Pier, Long Beach, catches of croaker were made. Rock worms proved to be the best bait. Croakers were also taken by surf casters in the vicinity of Hermosa Beach.
The report from San Diego declared that yellowtail fishing improved considerably over last weekend, particularly in the Coronado Islands area.
For the benefit of the strangers here wanting to go after yellowtail, we’ll again give a brief outline of the fish and one method of hooking up. The fish inhabit the Pacific, from Point Conception southward to the Galapagos Islands, the majority of them concentrated between San Diego and the Galapagos the year around. They belong to the jack family and attain a weight up to sixty pounds, the average caught off the local shores being around fifteen pounds. Best fishing is during the summer months.
Next to tuna and swordfish, yellowtail are esteemed highly by Southern Californian sport fishermen. They strike with a ferocity and strength astounding for their size.
At the present time, light wire leaders are being used by the more experienced yellowtail fishermen. Light tackle and light line are also used. The more invisible a line and leader are the more chance of a strike. Use 4-0 to 6-0 short shank tined hook.
Light wire leaders are faulty to the extent that they are more apt to kink than a heaver one, but this is answered by changing leaders every so often.
Some real big news in a last minute report from San Diego. A great school of bluefin tuna was located early this week by a San Diego live-bait boat about a mile off La Jolla.
Several of the big fish were landed, sardines being the bait used. At one time, the report declared, ten tuna were being worked by the anglers on the boat, but most of the fish got away, due to the inexperience of the anglers and broken tackle.
If the bluefins are in Southern Californian waters, it is the opinion of the veteran anglers that the yellowfin are not far away.
The San Diego report advises angles to be sure their tackle is the right kind and in first-class shape for tuna isn’t fooling when he hits a horse sardine.
Honor of landing the first tuna of the season in San Diego waters goes to Walter Johnson of El Centro. The fish was a twenty-pounder. W. H. Anderson, Jr., of Los Angeles and C. W. Burkett of Inglewood landed a tuna each.
A yellowtail weighing twenty-eight and one-half pounds, caught last Tuesday off Coronado Islands, is believed to be the biggest yellowtail caught this season.
The San Diego report also stated that surf angling along the beach at Ensenada and at Point Banda had been producing some good catches of corbina and croakers.