I'm Jim Root, one of the most published anglers on the topic of fish behavior as it relates to weather conditions. If you have questions let me know!
By: Jim Root , 3:49 PM GMT on March 11, 2014
I just got back from a trip to the sunny shores of Southern California and I already want to go back, especially after having been to Seal Beach. Not only was the sun warm and the sand soft, but the pier offers some excellent fishing!
I was fortunate enough to meet not only experienced local anglers who frequent this particular location often, but I also spent some time talking to a woman from Ontario, Canada, who was there visiting family and came to spend a little time pitching squid into the surf. This fellow Northeastern Native was, like myself, just happy to be out of the frigid temperatures we've had back home and makes the trip to this part of California annually.
Two friends who were more experienced anglers told me that they've seemed to have better fishing at night. I asked them why they felt that was and they couldn't really tell me. I told them that if they started keeping track of some very simple information (tides, moon phase, temperature) that they might be able to find a pattern and increase their success. They also noted that it seemed that the people on the north side of the pier were catching 10:1 more fish than they were. I told them it was my opinion that the cause of that was three things: bait, presentation, and shade.
The first was the bait. These two guys, like my new friend from Ontario, were using squid, and fishing on the bottom. The two guys who were catching fish well were, as it turns out, using very small jigs. They were also moving the bait much quicker, lifting and letting it fall at a rate of about 1 or 2 lifts per second.
Last but not least, the sun was very bright that day, and the fish that were biting were under the pier. By setting up on the north side, the waves were able to bring the bait under it and into range of the fish. Apparently my years of dock fishing for largemouth allowed me to help them a bit. Within five minutes of switching sides and using much smaller pieces of their squid the friends were able to each hook up with decent Mackerel.
When I go back I'll try to hit the pier at high tide.
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