Celebrating 70 years of Western Outdoor News – Five new features for 2023

HAVE YOUR SAY on various topics in the all-new Soundings section on page 4.

Your new-look Western Outdoor News features several new sections, offering more information and a wider scope than ever before. Here’s what to look out for as we celebrate 70 years of publishing the West Coast’s best fishing and hunting resource.

Truck Tracker ­– making trout fishing even easier

Trout season is in full swing in California and those stocking trucks are a welcome sight as they seed thousands of pounds of trout in lakes throughout every corner of the state, ensuring great fishing and plenty of meat in the freezer.

But, until now, keeping track of the various stockings has required a James Bond-level of sleuthing and guesswork. So, let us introduce the Truck Tracker which features a comprehensive list of trout stockings over the coming weeks. Planning your next trout slaying session and getting your limit has never been easier.


Surf Fishing Report ­– now covers 840 miles of coastline

Our new and improved surf reports will now cover almost the entire West Coast; from the Mexican border right up to the Northern most areas of the Golden State and beyond, massively expanding the section’s footprint from the original Santa-Barbara-to-San-Diego scope.

We want to give Central and North coast surf anglers the same level of information we offer SoCal beach casters, with added insight from our team of local experts to help you catch more fish next time you hit the shore. We’re also featuring tide times and tables for the two-week period when the edition is on-sale, making it easier to plan a session around those peak times and tidal swings.

Whether you’re chasing corbina in Carlsbad, stripers in San Francisco or calico perch in Crescent City, we’ve got it covered. Send us epic surf catches and handy local tips on editors@wonews.com for a shot at featuring on the page, too.

Tackle Box & The Armory – reviews of the latest outdoor products

Mixing deep dives into new equipment, detailed expert reviews and news of the best fishing kit available, Tackle Box is a new section of the newspaper dedicated to West Coast tackle fans. Let’s face it, most anglers nerd out on new tackle like a kid at Christmas, except this Santa is delivering the goods all year round in the form of the newest and greatest fishing-related products.

Written by experts and featuring products with real-world usability, we want to help our readers with honest opinions and detailed information on items like rods, reels and baits that you regularly purchase. Look out for the first reviews in the Jan 20 issue of WON.

As well as more fishing tackle-related features, we’re also covering hunting-related products in detail through our team of expert outdoor writers and hunters in The Armory section. Starting this week with Steve Comus’ review of the sleek Savage 110 Ultralight rifle complete with carbon-wrapped barrel, we’re covering the newest and best equipment available to West Coast hunters.


Baja Report – maps and detailed reports

The new-style Baja Report section now features a map for reference and detailed information to help anglers dial in the bite across this large and varied region. Written by local experts with decades of experience covering every inch of the Baja peninsula, you’ll be able to tell at a glance where the hot bites are and how to get on them.

Key areas include San Quintin, Bay of LA, Cedros, Lorteo, Mag Bay, La Paz and, of course, Cabo San Lucas, home of the famous WON Cabo Tuna Jackpot. If you live, fish or holiday on the Pacific coast of Mexico, this is your go-to resource for getting into the best fishing.

Tide times and analysis

As any saltwater angler will tell you, the tides and moon phases form a large part of working out the puzzle when it comes to targeting certain species. Get these wrong and you’ll be some way off the bite, in all likelihood. To help our readers catch more, we’ll be running two weeks’ worth of tide times in every issue, starting on page 16 and 17 in this week’s edition.

You’ll be able to see the times and swing between high and low plus moon phases and tide heights, so you can plan a session in the surf or offshore easily. Alongside this, we’re also offering analysis of each week’s tides, highlighting prime days and periods to get out there.

Tides and moon phases can be complex to understand and, let’s be honest, who wants to sit there staring at tables of numbers trying to work out what’s happening and when? Nobody. The Tide Guide is your one-stop shop for session planning.

Plus a bonus sixth!

Soundings – rants, witticisms and anecdotes welcome

You know the one hunting or fishing thing that really bugs you… maybe it’s those smelly socks in the blind, the one annoying local regulation you’ve fallen foul of, or your buddy’s inability to not cast over your line repeatedly on that last paddy hopping trip.

Whatever’s bothering you, get that rant off your chest in our new reader-orientated section, Soundings, as seen on page 4 in every issue. Every week, we’re offering a prize for the best letter, so not only are we doing you a favor by helping you let off some steam, we’re also offering a bribe for the pleasure of doing so. You’re welcome. Email us on letters@wonews.com for your free dose of therapy.