North & CenCal Saltwater Fish Report
Updated January 10, 2022
North Coast Saltwater
BROOKINGS, ORE. — Anglers caught easy limits of rockfish, a few lingcod and a few keeper crab during the first calm day of the year on Sunday. From beaches around Brookings, fishing has been good for surf perch. Larry Clark at Brookings Bait and Tackle said red tail perch are bring raw shrimp and Gulp Sand Worms at the south jetty of the Chetco, and near Crissy Field at the mouth of the Winchuck River.
CRESCENT CITY — Sport crabbing is open and has been good when the boats can get out. Rough conditions all week kept the boats tied up.
TRINIDAD — Small boats are still crabbing out of Trinidad and finding limits in the harbor of just outside. Ocean conditions were good over the weekend.
EUREKA — Crabbing is still a good option inside Humboldt Bay. The best spots continue to be the south bay and King Salmon. Guys running rings are doing well and getting limits. Squid and chicken seem to be the bait of choice. Rock fishing off the jetties was slow due to rough conditions.
SHELTER COVE — Commercial crabbing remains solid for the small fleet working out of this port.
FORT BRAGG — Crab-only trips are the only game in town other than fishing off of the beaches or the jetty for a variety of species, including bliny eels in the rocks. Crab limits are the rule.
BODEGA BAY — The New Sea Angler will run crab-only trips throughout the month of January, and this week’s trip produced 9 quick limits of Dungeness. The six-pack, Reel Magic, will be operating as much as possible in the coming months with sand dab/crab trips, and although the sand dab fishing was slow on a recent trip, they posted easy limits of crab. Tomales Bay will be a destination of choice for a variety of species during the winter, and there has been some bait located inside the bay. The north and south jetties at Doran Park and Campbell Cove on the west side have been producing a handful of crab with either snares or hoops. The jetties are crowded, particularly on the weekends.
GOLDEN GATE — Crab-only trips will be an option out of San Francisco, Berkeley, and Emeryville in the coming months along with sturgeon ventures into San Pablo Bay. Fish Emeryville is one port running sand dab/crab or crab-only trips in the coming weeks while others focus upon boat maintenance.
SAN FRANCISCO BAY —Sturgeon fishing continues to improve in the south bay with ghost or grass shrimp due to recent inflow, and the improved tides this week should spur the sturgeon bite in San Pablo Bay. Fish Emeryville is one port running sand dab/crab or crab-only trips in the coming weeks while others focus upon boat maintenance. Due to the arrival of herring spawns in the bay, white sturgeon may not be taken in the following described area between January 1 and March 15: That portion of San Francisco Bay included within the following boundaries: A direct line between Pt. Chauncy (National Marine Fisheries Laboratory) and Pt. Richmond, the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge and a direct line between Pt. Lobos and Pt. Bonita.
HALF MOON BAY — Crab-only or crab/sand dab/petrale sole trips will dominate the next three months, but the commercial Dungeness fleet is starting to stack gear as the number of commercial-grade crab is waning. More females are showing up in the pots. Crab/sand dab combination trips are the best bet out of this port. The jetties in Half Moon Bay, San Mateo County beaches, and the Pacifica Pier are the top locations for shore fishermen seeking Dungeness, and limited scores are taken on snares or hoops from the crowded pier or surrounding beaches. The Pacific Pier may or may not be closed during the winter storms and information is available at https://www.cityofpacifica.org/depts/pw/parks/pacifica_pier.asp.
MONTEREY — Surfcasting reports are best from the northern beaches of Monterey County. A few stripers are in the mix along with barred surf perch in the 14- to 15 -inch range. Crabbing is decent.
SANTA CRUZ — Crabbers are doing well using multiple pots and giving long soaks. The depth rage remains 180-220 feet for best Dungeness results. Surfcaster are finding the fish biting better on outgoing high tide, either in town Santa Cruz or much further south towards Moss Landing.
MOSS LANDING — Dungeness crab takes top billing. The crab can be found 180 to 220 feet of water along the canyon edges. Sand dabs and Petrale sole are on the menu.