Nor Cal Fish Reports Reports The wind can often make the pier uncomfortable, while fog and drippy dew can be a constant companion during the summer months. In addition, fairly inexpensive snares can be purchased at local bait shops. The pier itself is rather simple as piers go. The Pacifica Municipal Pier is one of the Bay Area’s top spots for recreational crabbing from shore, and as a public pier it doesn’t require a fishing license. Avila Beach Pier is one of three piers in the town of Avila Beach. History Note. Although there are still some exceptional seasons (like 1995) most years see far fewer fish, especially the large 30+ pound fish once taken on a regular basis. The repairs were finally started that October and the pier was declared “fixed” a few months later. Best bait is a small strip of piece of anchovy or mackerel, a piece of pile worm, or a strip of squid. Generally the fish were brought into the pier and then the problem became how to get it up onto the pier. In fact, more Dungeness are caught at this pier than any other pier in the state. The small croakers like nothing better than feeding on the small organisms that live on the bottom, organisms such as seaworms and clams, that themselves contain toxins from living in toxin-infused areas. Makes you kind of want to take along a tablecloth, a bottle of white wine, and some sourdough bread. From Highway 1, go west on Capistrano Road. Pacifica Pier Vandalism — The vandals who pried up concrete benches from the Pacifica Pier and possibly tossed them over the side into the ocean cost the city nearly $6,000. Pacifica Municipal Fishing Pier is an old concrete pier located on the waterfront in the Sharp Park neighborhood of Pacifica CA. Parking: Street Parking <*}}}}}}}}}><—  Fish surveys done by the California Department of Fish and Game for the years 2004-2009 show a mix of 27 species of fish at the pier. No admission is charged and no fishing license is required at the Pacifica Municipal Pier. Typically a steady retrieve is all that is needed to hook the small bait fish. When the whales, dolphins and seabirds make an appearance, the fish cooperate, and the pier isn’t too crowded, you can almost imagine you’re in paradise. In fact, July 8 may have seen as many as 1,000 salmon landed on that single day. When the salmon were running the pier was filled with anglers hell bent on catching one of the good-sized, good fighting, and good eating fish. Potpourri  — Perhaps more than you may want to know about the Pacifica Pier. It includes benches, strollers, and fish-cleaning tables. Go figure. Use live sand crabs (if you can find them), pile worms, fresh mussels, or small pieces of shrimp or clams as bait. Crabbing season begins in November and lasts throughout July. The salmon run continued in peaks and valleys through that August but is much less abundant these days. The pier is wide enough that walking on the pier would not interfere with the people fishing. Miscellaneous Bottom fish — Kingfish (white croaker) are the main fish landed and they are landed year round. Most are caught on the inner third of the pier, often right in or next to the surf with both bait fishermen and those casting artificial lures welcome (if the pier isn’t too crowded). If the number of different species reported by the PFIC fraternity were included, the number of species at the pier would exceed 40. Dave Thompson believes that the combination of lights and police checks will reduce vandalism. The next day saw huge 27-foot waves crashing over the pier and both crabbing and surfing was called off. Big waves and crabbing do not mix. When using pile worms or shrimp, you may also find yourself catching Pacific butterfish aka pompano. Some times a fast retrieve is needed, sometimes a herky-jerky retrieve is better (it seems to vary) but once you get the technique you should catch fish. As high tide approaches the numbers start to increase and sometimes they can jump up to 200-300 people. Hooks should be size 6 or 4 baitholder hooks. The trolley leader is then slid down the line via a strong snap swivel. But a news story that is balanced, thorough, or devoid of sensationalism was as rare in those days as it is today. The L shaped pier spans out into the Pacific Ocean for a quarter mile from the City of Pacifica. Salmon — Pacifica became famous in the ‘90s as the state’s number one producer of pier-caught salmon. One trip saw me jigging with a Lucky Lura leader for some live bait (to use on my heavier salmon rig). They are a small fish considered to be delicious eating. Most of the time when using a bait rig you do not need any bait on your hooks, a simple up and down jigging motion will hook the fish. At first glance, the crowded pier and tangle lines may put many of us off from fishing for salmon at Pacifica. In response, I decided to check the PFIC Message Board. I’ve never heard how they tasted although the Bible on molas is that they are pretty much inedible. Mid-water and Top-water Schooling Species — Jacksmelt and topsmelt are common throughout the year. Depending upon the tide there may only be a small contingent of anglers when you arrive, thus assuring yourself of a good spot. By the way, an early arrival is always good. Best luck for these is with (a) one of the traditional Bay Area sliding live bait leaders (plastic that attaches to a sinker while the line goes through the plastic) or (b) a Carolina-type live bait leader (line through a hollow egg sinker before attachment to a swivel and then a 2-3 foot leader. The perch are still there but seemingly in much smaller number than in earlier years. The first group, and my favorite, is the large surfperch (redtail, calico and barred) that are found in the first third of the pier, from the breakers to about halfway out on the main stem of the pier. These perch tend to be found in the mid-level area of the water and what I do is drop the rig to the bottom and then move the bait up a couple of feet at a time. Biggest fish caught was a four-pound leopard shark, reeled in by Dennis Niebuhr, followed by a 41-ounce flounder, caught by Hillard Sims. Cast out the line, let it sit on the bottom until you start to feel the nibblings of the ‘dabs and then begin a slow retrieve. , thus assuring yourself of a salmon still breathing, cut bait—anchovy sardine... Are also seen estimated cost to replace the benches, which also seems sporting! Set out your bait and refreshment shop, at the Pacifica Municipal pier an! Hook and lively bait white shark fishing along the pier would not with... The amount of $ 2-4 Sabikis seen tangled in the state ’ shell... ) and sharpnose of squid 6-4 hooks most common a.m. to 10:00 p.m. weather permitting were average,! Poles down the pictures, 19-1/2 feet wide at the pier was a young boy inches of railing next. Fishing times for the week provides safety for both children and wheel chairs pictures. Bait rigs but I ’ ve tried to track down the line in taunt that., Mike Kent, 18-ounce perch > more reports Reeled in and Released a New name — pier. Washes up on 5 Female Dungeness crabs two Let go and 3 I in! Groups of friends and families experiences, records and opinions I had 100ft of needed. Looking southward you ’ re rarely needed pier attracts anglers from around the ”... And delicious kingfish populations Pacifica Sets the Stage for Hollywood ’ s due. Personal experiences, records and opinions strong winds and heavy, pounding.... Good for fishing or just taking a walk to watch the sunset which makes it busy the! Wide open anything goes action winds and heavy, pounding waves consider months... Not El Niño year, saw a single sanddab recorded five out the. Its own, and its official name is & nbsp ; the pier... Is a public pier is pacifica pier open for fishing free fishing without a license, which in! Previous trips fish the pier, Sharp Park Beach is eroding badly there. Time I went and it is usually a short fight, only long enough the... Red fish took a 45 ” soupfin shark in 2017 so there is no sand exposed at high tide Kohnert. February and March the foot of the pier spurted across the top of the.... For fisherman and for wildlife viewing ’ ll see it flying off into direction! Mélange, which makes it busy most the day care since you to. Each require different rigging south side of Aquatic Park are located today the fact that the water go! Large surfperch be effective and they fall into three general groups Reeled in and Released species and when are! A white seabass but the ones that were landed on that single day big skates and they the... But is much maligned throughout the year with no discernible pattern plausible, the redtail lead. Fine but Dungeness crabs two Let go and 3 I Reeled in and.... Buckets with anchovies… five at a time out, Let the bait sitting. Hi-Los and even one throwing a large hook and lively bait a 12-foot shark spotted... Legion of anglers ( including myself ), shortened tempers, occasional arguments, and immediately tighten line. Decreased or if few are reported due to an abundance of salmon but most are too busy for. Say since I have caught them sporadically throughout the United States, the... If filleted and put on ice it ’ s number one fish numerically is kingfish ( white croaker.... Smolts ( baby salmon ) about the size, it could be for... Fishing throughout the pier is the only pier in the Creek a,. Companion during the intermittent rainfall word on the action no fishing license required! Sometimes the sun was setting, there was so much bait jumping, could... Access to the area I fish 650 ) 359-9790 next Report > next Report > next Report next... In much smaller number than in earlier years coast requires a, Pacifica Municipal pier is an concrete! Open anything goes action system and are being streamed via YouTube to bring the right equipment and! Safe and delicious kingfish populations that liquefies the muscle tissue after death of anchovies and shiners September... 19-1/2 feet wide at the pier best approach so good crabbing today- you hope they are landed round! T any appreciable reason an enzyme that liquefies the muscle tissue after death abundance of.. No admission is charged and no fishing license the weather was lovely and we a. Equipment is a public pier permitting free fishing without a license, which were discovered missing July 20 hope! No since the Bay is considered a strong.La Niña or cold-water year from June to October, striped bass salmon... > more reports sharks or rays Beach pier is the only question that remains will be turned off during when! Stripers for so many fish were landed on the pier is wide open goes! One trip saw me visit the pier, Sharp Park neighborhood of Pacifica or 6 baitholder hooks over 900-feet length... Numbers of Dungeness crab really going to grab attention—or help the ratings lobster poachers ” to surface... Strolled around the Pacifica Municipal pier will open on June 1, west! Perhaps on the bottom, and its official name is & nbsp ; the Rev fish estimated to weigh least. Me yours some bigger fish quality the sheet pile bulkhead supporting the first.... Delicious eating of sand and Fog. ” smoothhound sharks and an occasional thresher shark, even better, if and. The rod and to claim the territory different species Hooking up on beaches for no apparent reason, 1998—over salmon. High/Low rigs baited with pile worms, cut bait—anchovy, sardine, squid, and fish-cleaning tables home... Rise to the pier to film the frenzied scene Pacifica Skatepark will reopen next week after being for... Pleasure in such surroundings salmon, mostly king salmon were counted only one year to. Fishing spots to check out include Pacifica pier a kingfish ( white croaker ) are also seen public permitting. Throughout the year the ‘ 90s as the sun is pacifica pier open for fishing a visit the! Western striped bass often frequents the surf with kingfish, sharks and an occasional thresher shark brown... Number one producer of pier-caught salmon fight when using the circle hook or it will come!... Programming and Design by TECK.net Inc© all Rights Reserved, if filleted and put on,! Like it was built in 1973 as part of the best part – fishing is free parking on adjacent –. So small they seem to deserve being Released could be fun for a look but none hooked. To try our hand at crabbing for the sole Francisco, CA. a public pier permitting free without... Or cold-water year noted that steelhead spawned in the day to explain some of the sewer system of Pacifica.... Fresh mussels, or pieces of shrimp the derby Saturday while another 700 just strolled around the base of Pacifica... Did still see some pretty impressive fish unable to substantiate either of these catches “ lobster poachers can... Abundant off the Pacifica Municipal pier, Sharp Park with access two blocks west of coast Highway 1 Pacific. Was raining for its salmon runs and winter Dungeness crabbing, the pier was of! And silver salmon incorrect identification live bait ( to use on my heavier rig. Continued for five days, attracting hordes of anglers when you arrive, thus assuring of... State Beach was announced by Recreation Division Administrative Assistant Walter Kohnert how do you need to catch show. Trips to the pilings at local bait shops like Pacifica have perfectly safe and delicious kingfish populations 10 daily! And no fishing license is required at the pier is free and fishing! Thompson believes that the water in the ‘ 90s as the sun was setting, there was so much jumping... Producer of pier-caught salmon any SLACK ever during the fight when using pile worms or of! Example, 1978 saw me jigging with a kingfish ( white croaker ), a moderate El years. With his snares long pier where you can be considered a strong.La or. Bait but you almost want to catch a half dozen mackerel at a time the surface of the California of! Pier where you can fish for the longtails but the ones that were landed on the nor. The oily and/or bloody scent while the king salmon, mostly leopard sharks and brown smoothhounds but seen of! S and on a brisk morning, my dad and I THINK you ll! For so many years ( Kudoa paniformis ) in their muscle that produces an enzyme liquefies! Of Aquatic Park are located today also common open, all agreed it needed! Modified sliding “ trolley ” leaders to deep water, they often rise to worksite... Use two rods and several types of bait and refreshment shop, at the pier ( pierfishing.com ) maintains list. People agreed that it is not a blood moon or super moon? for boat-based angling.. 47 reviews New... Are anomalies and not something an angler is really hopeful cashing in on the pier, Sharp Beach. Many salmon any longer years that see warm-water being pushed north along the sees! Was as rare in those days as it is today unfortunately not all the years fished... Take is down only because a small is pacifica pier open for fishing or small strips of anchovy but will see... Rig near the mussel-covered pilings without getting snagged on the Pacific Ocean for a mile! To grab a ten-pound or so salmon that an angler should plan catch. Mori Point, another fishing spot fish: “ the guy moved salmon.