View Full Version : Is there such thing as saltwater fishing lessons & are there any in Orange County?

03-19-2014, 08:51 PM
Since this isn't a boating question I didn't feel comfortable asking this in the saltwater forum. After several days debate I decided since I'm located in SoCal this was the best forum.

I live in Costa Mesa so I'm far closer to the ocean than freshwater. (And even the freshwater fishing around here is mostly paid lakes that I understand the fish taste terrible.)

I want to get into saltwater fishing but I find I'm not very good at it.

1: I'm used to only rigging for freshwater.

2: I really don't know what bait to use - I'm used to live bait like worms and night crawlers. I don't ever use lures simply because I've never had luck with them.

3: I can't do it from a boat - I get too violently seasick. And even if I could - well, it's just too expensive. While fishing from the shore, piers, and docks are free.

My oldest brother saltwater fishes, but he works for Disneyland and is simply too busy to teach me.

I thought maybe if there was classes offered or someone who did teaching for a relatively inexpensive price it would help. I learn much, much better seeing and doing than I do from books or videos alone. But my internet searches don't turn up anything except places like Davy's Locker - which is only about boat rental and fishing from boats.

And if there isn't, well, maybe my post would inspire some of you to start a side business teaching newbies in your spare time. That way you get paid to fish.

03-20-2014, 05:45 AM
Many guides offer the type of "on the water training" that you are looking for. Some are very happy to show you rigging and tackle techniques while providing a more informative approach to guiding. Contact a couple who fish the areas and species you are interested in and tell them exactly what you are looking for. You will find the best training $200 can buy with the right guide.

03-20-2014, 06:23 AM
Also, don't be afraid to go down to the piers or jetties and just talk to other people that are fishing there. You'll find that most fishermen are helpful and will provide knowledge. Especially to new guys just trying to get into fishing

03-20-2014, 08:50 PM
$200 is about half a paycheck for me. I work part time at a public library. But I suppose I could ask for my birthday for everyone to go in together - even if it just pays part of it.

I go so early in the morning everyone tends to be super quiet. I just want to catch whatever's legal, though I don't eat shellfish. (The few times I "caught" anything it was crab, which I always threw back.) I cut it out of my diet cause my cholesterol was too high. Been able to keep it well within normal range without any other changes ever since.

Oh, I guess I should point out I'm a female. If you go to my profile and look for my album you'll find a few pictures of me (and of my dad). I don't care for having my photo taken, however, so it's mostly pictures of fish caught by either dad, mom, or me. Mom refuses to be in the photos all together but sometimes she manages to get me into the picture.

03-20-2014, 09:30 PM
What you should consider is pier fishing. It's a good way to get out on the water and get to where some fish are. Don't go alone.

Also you can go to any beach with waves and have a chance with surf perch fishing.
Requires a spinning rod, 6-10 pound test, some weight and some grubs. Google it.
Also don't do that alone.

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03-20-2014, 09:34 PM
I'm learning by reading books, locally-based magazines specific for my region, and talking to tackle shop owners. It's probably best to read before talking to the tackle shop owners, so as to avoid basic newb questions.

03-20-2014, 10:02 PM
The cheapest method to learn new stuff is youtube or fishing sites like this. You can get a lot of information for free. Books can also be a great resource and there will be stacks on whatever species you want to go for.

03-20-2014, 10:11 PM
I don't go alone, dad fishes with me and mom watches. She had back surgery almost 20 years ago and doesn't stand for long, and the dock and pier are really only standing room.

I saw a place in Dana Point where a lot of people were fishing, I might try there.

Like I said, I learn better by seeing and doing than seeing and reading. I have to be hands on when I learn something new.

I'll see about when my birthday rolls around if I can get part of the payment for a guide like AnglingWes suggested. Then I could foot the rest.

Unless I can finally get my older brother to go with me like he's been promising.

03-21-2014, 06:49 AM
If u just want to to catch what ever is out there i recomend trying a sabiki rig tipped with grocery store shrimp. It will
Catch u a variety of fish. (This is if ur pier fishing)

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03-21-2014, 08:00 AM
I lived in SoCal for a couple years for school, and I have to admit that unless you have a boat, you will find that there are not many locations to fish beside beach, piers, and jetties. I think the best way for you to learn is to actually talk to people who are fishing and they will happily teach you their techniques. When I first moved to Socal, I didn't know anything about saltwater fishing. I used Google map to look for jetty (I tend to avoid piers since they were too crowded and too many tourists), then brought my tackles and watched what others were doing. Many time, if they know you are newbie, they will offer to you fish with them and give you bait and tackle :). I started off getting stingray, but I gradually got more experience talking to other people and started getting bass, halibut and even rock fish from Jetty. However, fishing for those species is really going to test your patience. Since I fished mostly for fun and released or gave away all my fish, I would say perch and especially sargo fishing from the jetty were pretty fun since most time that i went, they were consistently biting. Also, fishing for croakers is fun too. If you go at the right time, expect non-stop action. Anyway, if you need to know a few spots, let me know.

03-21-2014, 10:28 AM
Thanks guys. I appreciate all the suggestions and I'm going to try them.

I'm going to the Fred Hall Show iN Corona Del Mar on Saturday the 29th. There's a guy there who I saw part of his lecture at the Long Beach one but I missed the first part and was sitting so close to the speakers when I did get there that I got a massive headache. I'm hoping he'll show how to tie some of those rigs I've seen others using.

I only know how to tie what I guess is called Carolina, which is basically how I do my freshwater, only I use a bobber there instead of a sinker. I'm also planning on going to a store in Dana Point called Jig Stop that has great reviews for customer service. I don't even know the weight of the line on my reel, it's the line that came with it. I figured they could put on what they feel is best for a newbie.

I'm hoping to eventually get good enough that I could justify paying for prescription nausea patches - there was one they put on me during my surgery that is suppose to be super powerful - and get out on a boat eventually. But right now I can't justify the expense cause I'm not good at this like I am with freshwater.

Plus I want to save up for a rifle I got to hold at the Sportman's Show because my oldest brother (I have 3 brothers, all older than me) and I want to go deer hunting with our dad at least once. But that's a subject for another forum.

04-04-2014, 02:51 PM
Take your 7' bass rod and hit the sand. 8-10 lb line works fine.
Use a carolina rig with a #4 hook on an 18-24" 6 lb leader below 1/2 to 3/4 oz egg.
Gulp 3'' camo or blood sand worms or Big Hammer 2-3'' grubs.
Try adding a bright colored bead or two just above the hook on your leader.
Hour or two before high tide or hour after.
Toss just beyond the break and work it back in slowly through the break making sure you keep contact with your weight.
Keep moving up or down the beach til you find the fish.
Remember if you wade out up to your knees there are fish behind you.
It's just that simple.
Fresh soft shell sand crabs are probably the best bait if you can locate and dig them.
Corbina, barred surf perch, walleyed surf perch and leopard sharks can be had using this technique. There are also Halibut to be had in the surf using a Stick bait.
If you plan on keeping and eating your catch make sure you check size limits for halibut and leopard sharks.
Keep at it until you get the hang of reading the surf.
Barred surf perch are good to eat and can run 15-16'' with 12'' fish common. Be prepared to toss back a lot of dinks as there are more fish in the surf than you think even if a lot of them are smaller size.
Like with almost all fishing, success is dependant on how much time you devote and how much attention you pay to what works best and when.

05-31-2014, 08:07 AM
Get on a 2 or 3 day trip out of San Diego right now. Tuna! It'll be a crash course, but thats the best way to learn - trial by fire!

06-01-2014, 06:57 AM
Get on a 2 or 3 day trip out of San Diego right now. Tuna! It'll be a crash course, but thats the best way to learn - trial by fire!

I think she mentioned she gets "mal de mer" on a boat. I recently read somewhere that there is a generic version of dramamine that also does not make you drowsy. It's price is like $10 per 100.

01-29-2015, 02:52 AM
If you get violently seasick then stay off a boat. Party boats with 40-50 heads on board will not turn back to shore to drop you off. So basically you would be paying to make yourself miserable for a day. Pier and surf fishing are gonna be your options. Plenty of perch, sharks, rays, bait fish and a few other fish can be caught from there.

Just remember, everything loves squid!

01-29-2015, 10:41 AM
here is a really cool fishing forum that is dedicated to shore and pier fishing. Lot's of help for you over there. Hope it's ok to post the link, if not remove.