Good Fishing Conditions This Weekend

Santa Cruz

Bowen Call and father Dan. Nothin' but Doubles on Stagnaro’s Velocity! Captain Mike Baxter found the spot. Deckhand BJ Sack worked overtime to keep up with all the blue rockfish coming over the rails.
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Stagnaros Charters

by Allen Bushnell

Expect some good fishing conditions over the weekend, with generally light winds over a small to medium swell. It's shaping up as a really good summer on the Monterey Bay for fishing. Salmon are still hanging around, halibut are here in numbers and you'd have to work at not limiting out on rockfish. 

Captain Mike Baxter was at the helm of Stagnaro's Velocity last Friday and found a giant school of willing blues in 110 feet of water near South Rock. Anglers aboard were pulling up nothing but doubles on their shrimp fly rigs for about an hour. The fish were biting from five to 15 feet below the boat, and free swimmers were a common sight. The boat quickly limited and was back at the dock around 10am. Stagnaro’s also reported rockfish limits plus 22 lingcod on Sunday’s north coast trip, and rockfish limits for the half-day trip on Monday,

The smaller six-pack charters out of Santa Cruz are racking up impressive numbers as well, with multiple specie limits. Tom Dolan from Mega-Bite Charters reported, “(We made a) meat run today and what a day it was! Our best trip EVER on the Mega-Bite. Caught our bait, then caught our limits-plus of lingcod (to 16 pounds), then caught our rockcod then caught our six salmon (to 17.5 pounds). Great group and a whole lot of fun and 250 pounds of fish came home. Perfect day.” Beth Norton from Go Fish Santa Cruz shared a similar report on Monday, saying, ““What a great day of fishing. Our repeat customers had early limits of a variety of quality rock fish while being entertained by whales putting on a show. Heading back toward Santa Cruz, deckhand JP noticed the water was suspicious of salmon. They dropped a line and before getting another one in the water – bang! Fish On! They hooked 20 kings, lost two to sea lions and threw back two shakers. Others were lost at the boat but they landed seven nice king salmon.”

Salmon are also on the bite close to the Santa Cruz Harbor and near Soldier’s Club in Monterey. Todd Fraser from Bayside Marine reported, “Salmon fishing was great today straight out of Santa Cruz in 160-200 feet of water. There were some early limits caught today down 120-180 feet trolling bait. The halibut fishing is still going good for the anglers working up the coast early and in Capitola. The halibut are still biting near Capitola, Mile Buoy, and Pajaro. There have been some big Halibut caught near 3-Mile.” Halibut are also a big item on the menu in Monterey. Chris Arcoleo at Chris’ Fishing Trips reported last week, saying “They are all over the place.” Anglers are hooking up the big flatfish from the surfline out to 80 feet of water along the entire shoreline of the bay. Hot spots include Del Monte Beach, Sand City, Fort Ord, Pajaro, New Brighton and the Capitola-Santa Cruz area.

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