Fishing Report: Fishermen, Port San Luis are trying to work things out

Some issues have surfaced at Port San Luis associated with the recent surge of albacore off the Central Coast.

They have to do with the parking of boat trailers and the vehicles that transport them, plus the early lineup awaiting the launch facilities to open.Fishermen have been upset about being harassed by security representatives on these two issues.

For as long as there has been a significant albacore bite off our coast, fishermen have hauled their boats from the San Joaquin Valley, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles as well as many other locales. And they act like fishermen usually do. They are bent on getting an early start to their day.

Traveling fisherman have been accustomed to arriving at Port San Luis the evening before embarking on their quest for tuna. For many years, they have slept in their vehicles prior to launching.

Marty Codorniz and his staff have begun launching as early as 4 a.m. this year.

Harbor Master Steve McGrath was out of town but responded to some e-mails sent to him concerning the aforementioned issues. He seemed amenable to setting a meeting with fishermen to discuss the matters.

McGrath posted the following on the fishreports.net Web site: “An option might be for a get-together in the new meeting room so we can figure this all out. Are you all up to participating in some constructive dialog so all can use and enjoy our port?”

Drew Brandy, president of the Port San Luis Harbor Commission, assured in a phone interview that “a meeting will happen. I’m a fisherman myself and we want to work with the fishermen. It seems obvious that we need a new policy. It appears that security did not use discretion in dealing with some boat owners but followed the letter of the law.”


Albacore forecast

 While on the subject of albacore, this weekend does not look to be one that tuna fishermen will find to their liking.

“The forecast is horrible,” said Harrell Kimball, who monitors conditions offshore and is the guru as far as albacore fishermen hereabouts are concerned.

“Thirty-knot winds with 10-foot swells at 6-second intervals are forecast for Saturday and it doesn’t look much better for Sunday,” Kimball continued Monday and Tuesday may be fishable. And that’s a maybe.”

He called Sept. 27 “the second-best day of the albacore season off the Central Coast. We had a better harvest several weeks ago.”

Patriot Sportfishing’s first albacore run of the season Monday saw 14 passengers land 20 albacore. The catches aboard the Pacific Horizon were made 58 miles out of port. Jackpot honors with a 17-pound longfin went to Joe Torres of Santa Maria.

The Pacific Horizon was scheduled to leave Wednesday night in search of tuna today.

Trips are priced at $225 per person. For reservations and more information call 595-7200.

Virg’s Landing

Last week 113 albacore, 4 bluefin tuna and six skipjack were caught on seven trips aboard the Princess, Admiral and the Pacific Queen, a vessel up from Southern California for the current albacore frenzy. For reservations and more information call 772-1222. Tuna trips depart at 11 p.m. with fishing the next day. The fare is $235.

Jackpot winners were: Dave Woodward, Templeton, 28-pound albacore; Dale Bunting, Cambria, 26-pound albacore; Dan Gilmore, San Luis Obispo, and Ken Ross, Long Beach, both 25-pound albacore; and Dick Van Dam, Tipton, 14-pound albacore.

On rockcod trips last week, the catch included: 13 lingcod, 208 red rockcod, 1,027 assorted rockfish, 149 coppers and 22 bocaccio.

Jackpot winners were: Crystal Wall, Porterville, and Brian Demark, Bakersfield, both 7-0ound lings, Tommy Avila, Pismo Beach, 6-pound red rockcod, and crystal Kiser, Maricopa, 5-pound whitebelly. Central Coast Sportfishing

On a 12-hour tuna run Sept. 24 with three anglers onboard the Rita G, three albacore were harvested. The big one was a 20-pounder caught by Charlie Powell.

Patriot Sportfishing

A 33-pound thresher shark was the heavyweight winner for anglers out of the Port San Luis landing last week. Cam Perez made the catch aboard the Patriot Sept. 25.

Two hundred thirty-two on rockcod anglers caught: 35 lingcod, 217 red rockcod, 835 assorted rockfish, 628 bolina, 1 halibut and 10 cabezon.

Jackpot winners included: Lorton Clowal, Santa Barbara, 13-pound ling; Mark Cabatuan, Santa Maria, 11-6 ling, Dennis Gummerman, Santa Maria, 9-pound ling; Raul Espinosa, Visalia, 7-pound ling; Josh Metzler, Tehachapi, 6-pound ling; Adolph Olivernipp, Santa Maria, 4-pound vermillion; and Anthony Castillo, Kingman, Ariz., 3-pound olive rockcod.

Port San Luis Boatyard

Fifty-one of the 69 boats launched last week were dispatched over the weekend — 30 on Saturday and 21 on Sunday.

The Whopper of the Week for the second week in a row was a 35-pound white sea bass. Orcutt’s Charlie Ussery made the catch Saturday.

Albacore brought in numbered 155, with 105 logged Sunday. Thirteen lingcod and 14 halibut were landed.

 Santa Margarita Lake

A swap weet focused on camping, boating, fishing tackle is scheduled for Oct. 24. There are 30 spaces available. The fee is $15 per space with the funds generated going to trout plant purchases. A barbecue will be part of the festivities. For more information, call marina operator Don Lopez at 438-1522.

Using an anchovy for bait, Santa Maria’s Jaime Lopez reeled in a 20-pound, 6-ounce catfish while fishing across from the marina on Sept. 24.

 Lopez Lake

The Scott Tinley Triathlon is scheduled for Friday through Sunday at the lake. For more information, visit www.tricalifornia.com.

Few anglers showed up last week, but Ahralysa Duenrostero of Oceano did catch two largemouth bass fishing from the F dock. A 15-pound catfish was caught by Glen Gatewood of Rialto on Sept. 24. His bait was mackerel.

Cachuma Lake

Crankbaits are the best way to join in an impressive smallmouth bass bite, marina staffer Dustin Farnum said. Catfish also are active with shore fishermen connecting from Loop Trail and the Mohawk Area using anchovy or mackerel for bait.

Boaters are carching catfish in the back of The Narrows and Santa Cruz Bay. Trout fishing is slow. The fish are down 35 feet to 65 feet by the dam and in Johnson’s Bay. Trollers are dragging red Rapalas or Needlefish while drift fishermen are jigging nightcrawlers. A few crappie are being taken on mini crankbaits and white or chartreuse crappie jigs.

 Whale Rock

One small catfish was caught and released. But the four anglers who tried did not catch any trout for the seventh consecutive open period.