Fishing in San Francisco: Your Complete Guide

Studying Time: 9 minutes

The great thing about the Golden Metropolis, the place nature and civilization co-exist in ease, is one thing to be witnessed. Cradled by the prolific San Francisco Bay, with the Pacific Ocean however a brief boat experience away, this metropolis was constructed on its immense fishing alternatives from the get-go. As of late, fishing in San Francisco is as fashionable as ever, and the way may it not be?

The climate is attractive year-round, and let’s be sincere, so are the fish. Anglers from all around the nation might come for the sights, however they’ll keep for the fishing motion. It doesn’t matter when you want pier fishing, surf casts, or going off with a constitution – San Francisco gives all that and a lot extra.

Prime Catches in San Francisco

San Franciscans love the number of fish species they’ve at their disposal and so they’re huge on seafood. Not solely are many of the fish tremendous enjoyable to catch, however they’re additionally tremendous tasty, and that makes every single day on the water doubly superior.

Something from fly fishing for Striped Bass to deep sea fishing for Tuna is on the menu. Is there that one particular fish that everybody desires? Probably. Do you may have good possibilities of hooking a trophy? Undoubtedly! Learn on for our quick overview of high catches in San Francisco.

It All Begins With Striped Bass

If ever there was “a fish of the individuals,” it should be Striped Bass! You generally is a newbie, a professional, or on the water along with your children, and also you’ll get pleasure from going after Stripers. Fishing for this species is open all 12 months, but it surely’s essential to maintain their spawning runs in thoughts.

Head to town in the summertime and fall, when Stripers come again to the bay after their spawning season. Bass love brackish waters and wherever a river or a stream flows into the bay, they’ll be there too.

Drift fishing with dwell bait is a foolproof method to get the eye of those feisty fighters, particularly when you use anchovies, shad, or shiner perch. Locals suggest holding your bait near the underside and punctiliously selecting a sinker to match the currents. You possibly can land Stripers from seashores and piers, however you’ll discover the most effective chunk when you solid your line from a ship.

Chinook Salmon – Everybody’s Favourite

Bear in mind how we talked about SF’s favourite fish? Properly, it’s no secret that Chinook, aka the “King” of all Salmon, is essentially the most prized catch right here. In reality, the entire Bay Space is thought for its beautiful wild Chinook, which is open for fishing from Might–October.

You possibly can go after Salmon within the bay or head into the open ocean waters. The selection is yours. In the beginning of the season, it’s typically higher to go additional out and search for patches of “soiled water,” as a result of that’s the place the fish congregate and feed. Within the warmth of the summer time, you don’t must go additional than the bay – the chunk is excellent, and you possibly can simply land a trophy.

Trolling is the secret in the case of Salmon fishing in San Francisco, although each angler has their very own philosophy in the case of selecting and presenting the bait. Chinook depend on their sense of scent once they’re searching, so utilizing useless bait like herring and anchovy will definitely get their consideration.

And while you get that King on the road, you’d higher be prepared for a struggle. Don’t fear, the reward will probably be effectively well worth the effort!

Halibut – the Flatty of Our Hearts

If we’re speaking concerning the well-known fish of San Francisco, we’ve got to say Halibut. They’re enjoyable to reel in, they’re tasty, and they are often big – all of the indicators of an excellent catch. You possibly can goal each California and Pacific Halibut in these waters, simply keep in mind that their seasonalities differ.

California Halibut (extra intently associated to Flounder than Halibut) is offered for fishing year-round. Their Pacific relations could be caught from Might–November, however there are normally a number of closed durations throughout the season, so you should definitely double-check the laws earlier than you hit the waves.

In the event you keep throughout the San Francisco Bay, you’ll be chasing California Halibut. These guys are typically smaller than Pacific Halis, however lots of people declare they style higher. Often known as “rooster” Halibut, they’ll weigh anyplace from 10–50 kilos, and you’ll find them all around the bay. The height season is normally from April–September when giant Halis come nearer to shore to spawn and hand around in heat waters.

To land a Pacific Halibut, your greatest wager is the ocean waters, the place you possibly can snatch some actual monsters. We’re speaking a whole lot of kilos, bigger-than-an-average-human, doormat Halibut. In the event you assume you’ve acquired what it takes, then prepare for a hunt of your life.

Lingcod and Rockfish – Two for the Value of One

Each Rockfish and Lingcod dwell in just about the identical locations, they’re not a lot to have a look at, and so they make for fabulous desk fare. That’s why anglers usually goal them as a package deal deal, as a result of while you hook one, the opposite gained’t be far behind. Additionally they share their open season, and also you’re allowed to catch them from March till the tip of the 12 months.

In relation to backside sea fishing in San Francisco, you’ll hardly discover a extra fashionable duo than Lingcod and Rockfish. Though they’re not lookers, they do make for top-notch sparring companions. These fellas stick with the ocean flooring and pulling them up from down there’s a problem as a result of they’re relentless fighters.

The excellent news is that they’re gluttonous, in order that they’ll gobble down absolutely anything you throw at them. Squid, anchovies, and sardines appear to work the most effective and are excellent for engaging your prey. Newbie anglers ought to attempt their luck within the waters which might be 100–150 ft deep, whereas seasoned fishermen can search for these peculiar backside dwellers in as much as 300 ft.

White Sturgeon – the One for the Bucket Record

Fishing in San Francisco has many ranges and when you’re prepared to succeed in new angling heights, then Sturgeon is your fish. There’s no fish that’s more unusual wanting and extra acrobatic than White Surgeon, and while you mix all that with the sheer energy of their chunk, you’ve acquired a worthy opponent.

These fish favored their look a lot that they haven’t modified for a lot of millennia, and simply by it, you’re coping with a distinct type of beast. Sturgeon can develop to be as much as 12 ft lengthy and weigh a number of hundred kilos. Having a monster like that on the road just isn’t for the faint of coronary heart. There are additionally loads of smaller specimens within the bay if you wish to begin off straightforward.

Sturgeon fishing season is open year-round, with the height time from November–March. They like colder waters, and throughout the winter, you possibly can even catch them from some piers. Their food plan adjustments relying on the season, however they’ll at all times go for good squid, smelt, night time crawlers, and sand shrimp.

Keep in mind that Sturgeon fishing is strictly regulated in California, and also you’re allowed to maintain just one per 12 months. In the event you’re focusing on Sturgeon in San Francisco Bay for the primary time, assist from an skilled native is all however needed in an effort to get to the most effective spots.

Kinds of Fishing in San Francisco

Similar to there’s an abundance of fish to chase, there’s loads of methods to do it. If you come to Fog Metropolis, how and the place you’ll solid your line relies upon solely in your preferences. Listed here are a few of the most frequent and productive varieties of fishing to discover.

Surf Fishing in San Francisco

Going to the seashore and spending a day in quiet contemplation with frequent fishing motion is one thing loads of locals dwell for. You possibly can hit the shore any time of 12 months, and there will probably be one thing to catch. That’s why surf fishing is such a giant deal in San Francisco.

There are a great deal of species you possibly can discover on the finish of your line, and the most typical catch is Surf Perch. Fishermen usually exit solely to land their share of this tasty fish, that may be cooked on the grill proper there, on the seashore.

The bay waters may additionally deal with you to good Halibut, Striped Bass, Leopard Sharks, and even Salmon and White Seabass. Surf fly fishing for Stripers is a blast in the summertime months if the place to go.

One other perk of surf fishing is that you just don’t want lots to have an excellent fishing day. Primary spinning gear, quite a lot of lures, a cooler to your catches (and a few chilly drinks), and a few endurance. Then, all it’s a must to do is await the magic to occur.

Pier Fishing in San Francisco

If there’s one factor SF isn’t missing, it’s piers. In reality, town has so many piers, that it’s well-known for it. Comply with Embarcadero Road and you’ll take your decide from over a dozen piers at your disposal. Chances are high, you’ll take a look at Pier 39 and Fisherman’s Wharf first, however don’t overlook about different choices you’ve acquired within the neighborhood.

If you get there, you’ll see anglers lined up and down the piers, all in the hunt for Halibut, Perch, and Striped Bass. Sharks are additionally on the market, and you’ll even do some night-time crabbing for a implausible seafood dinner.

Among the high fishing spots to take a look at embrace Pacifica Pier and Pier 7. The perfect half – fishing is free and also you don’t want a fishing license. And while you’ve had your fill of fishing for sooner or later, head to Pier 39 for some mild buying and to go to the lovely sea lions.

Fishing With a Constitution

Some anglers want hitting the water with professionals who know the native waters just like the again of their hand – it’s a great way to make sure a productive journey. The excellent news is that while you go fishing in San Francisco, there are dozens of charters to select from. That signifies that there’s one thing for each style and urge for food.

Personal journeys with a fishing information are the preferred alternative, particularly amongst first-comers. Half day excursions will maintain you within the bay, focusing on Bass, Halibut, Salmon, and White Seabass. You would additionally e book a spot on a celebration boat and make new associates whereas reeling in your catch.

Full day choices are nice for extra skilled fishermen since you get to transcend the Gate and chase backside dwellers like Lingcod, Rockfish, in addition to large Chinook Salmon. Through the summer time, you possibly can enterprise additional offshore to come back face to gills with Albacore Tuna, the final word catch of the world.

Prime Fishing Spots in San Francisco

Now that we all know what fish we are able to discover and the way we are able to catch them, it’s time to speak about the most effective fishing spots in and across the metropolis. There’s a slew of them to select from, and the place you go will rely upon what you’d prefer to fish for and for a way lengthy.

  • Fisherman’s Wharf. That is most likely the preferred fishing spot in San Francisco, and also you’ll hardly discover higher pier motion anyplace else. Sharks, Striped Bass, Perch, and Flounder are all within the playing cards, and on a very good day, you would possibly actually have a showdown with a Sturgeon.
  • Berkeley Flats. In the event you’d prefer to step away from town middle and check out much less localized fisheries, Berkeley Flats is the place for you. You’ll see a very good share of boats on the water right here, all in the hunt for good-sized Halibut, Striped Bass, and White Seabass.
  • Marin Islands. Come to this Pure Wildlife Refuge, and also you get to mix glorious fishing with bird-watching. Rockfish reign supreme in these waters, however Striped Bass, Lingcod, and Halibut observe shut behind. That is the right spot for a full day fishing journey.
  • Candlestick Park. That is the fishing spot for all outside lovers. The park is definitely an enormous leisure space with mountaineering trails and two fishing piers. The standard suspects you possibly can catch right here embrace Flounder, Perch, Striped Bass, and large Sturgeon.
  • The Farallon Islands. We are able to’t discuss fishing in San Francisco with out mentioning the Farallones. In the event you’re within the temper for premier Lingcod, Rockfish, and Halibut motion, you’ll must journey 30 miles offshore to get to the islands. The chunk is implausible, and the one query is – are you courageous sufficient to fish across the Satan’s Enamel Islands?

Fishing License and Rules

Whether or not you determine to go fishing by yourself or with a constitution, the one factor it’s essential to take into consideration is your fishing license. Any individual that’s 16 and older ought to have a legitimate California fishing license with them always.

In the event you’re fishing from a public pier, you don’t want a license, however you do must abide by the state fishing laws. Anglers seeking to hook and maintain a Sturgeon want to purchase a Sturgeon Report Card together with their fishing license.

Fishing in San Francisco – It Doesn’t Get Higher Than This

If there ever was a spot that completely combines an excellent metropolis trip with even higher fishing instances, it should be San Francisco. The Metropolis By The Bay is a type of locations that you just should have in your bucket checklist, and we promise you, its distinctive allure and fishing abundance will steal your coronary heart without end.

Have you ever ever fished San Francisco’s waters? Do you may have suggestions and tips to share? What’s your favourite spot? Share your impressions within the feedback beneath.

Leave a Comment