View Full Version : Seacliff & Manressa TR

09-01-2008, 11:10 AM
Early at the 8am opening, we went out on the Cement Ship at Seacliff State Beach. *Hadn't been there in maybe a half dozen years or so and did not have much expectations because on the previous couple of visits we thought it was just another fished out spot. *One reason for a visit is one person of we four didn't have a fishing licence that isn't needed on piers. I'd also heard the ship itself had been long off limits unlike in the old days when it was at the furthest end along the ship that I'd usually had luck. *So we bought a block of frozen squid in the market near the park entry kiosk and hauled out our gear. *

The weather was upper 60s temp, partly overcast with just a quite light breeze. *Over a couple hours, I caught three baby cabezon that I chucked back. *Didn't see anyone else catch anything and each time was mobbed by all the little kids at the pier. * **Well actually I also "caught" a cheap made in China fishing pole/reel tangled in a heavy blob of seaweed, we hauled up from the water to the pier with a rope trebble hook. *Was glad to see the park person in the LG tower didn't bother dog owners with unleashed behaved pups on the pier. Given it was Saturday, the Labor Day weekend, the pier was mobbed. *When we left at 10:30pm the road had become a zoo and the large upper parking lot atop the bluff quickly filling with cars and myriad folks dragging down beach gear. *

We drove further east to Aptos and down to less well known Manressa State Beach where the parking lot at 11am was only about 1/4 full that was probably half surfers. *By that time sun was fully out and a mild breeze atop the water. *Waves were rather large and maybe a reason so many surfers were visiting. * * Out north on the beach, we proceeded to fish surfperch with plastic grubs and live sand crabs. *I use a mesh net to easily catch them. *On each wave I'd find a half to dozen wriggling crab balls in the net as there are zillions along the sandy Monterey Bay shores that supports the considerable perch population. *

The last few years I've just gotten out to fish on the coast, once or twice a summer. * My old strategy was a long 12 foot surf casting rod, heavy disk sinkers or sandbags, and muscels. * But we had caught the advice to use light gear so brought out somewhat lighter gear to do so. *So had Carolina end tackle with plastic oil grubs. *In two hours, I had a few bites and my bro caught a 7 inch barred surf perch. * Another guy nearby using a plastic PB marine worm *had caught several also small ones. * I waded out into the surf to thigh depth to cast on the wave outgoing wanes, then would jump back to knee depth to fish. Twas cold of course. *My line on my Steelhead rod/reel rig was maybe 10# or 12# with a half ounce torpedo sinker, so still too heavy as the surf wave action against that larger surface just dragged it around awkwardly too quickly. *And there was a strong current to the east along the beach that made line work difficult. *When we left at 1pm the small parking lot was only then nearly full with the beach full of sunbathers.

So next time we will bring lighter rod/reels with 4# or 6# test. * Also need to make up some leaders using stiffer straightened line so the surf wave action doesn't easily tangle up the terminal tackle. *And will wear my really old O'Neil long john wet suit bottoms in order to be able to get out to about the average waist deep depth where I might make short casts into the prime perch feeding depth and stay there longer in the chilly water

09-01-2008, 08:50 PM
Sounds like a fun day at the beach. Im still working on my surf perch skills.

09-09-2008, 10:31 AM
Wow, now thatís a report! Very detailed and helpful.

I have encountered the twisted/tangled leader while fishing for perch with a Carolina rig too. The best way to counteract it is with heavier stiffer line. Surf perch arenít real picky so I use 12lb Maxima Ultragreen for leader material, even though my mainline is only 8lb test. I have even used 20lb leader and caught perch.

Next time, try some of the Gulp sandworms on a Carolina rig. Work it just like a grub but slower. And hesitate for a few seconds during the strong receding waves, instead of fighting against it and burying your sinker. I get lots of strikes by doing that.

Another good trick if they arenít hitting the grubs, is to switch up the way you rig it. Instead of threading the grub up the shank of the hook, try to just nose-hook it. Or vice-versa.

Berryessa Kid
09-09-2008, 02:30 PM
Great report!! Thanks for taking the time. I lived in Aptos for a number of years. It's good to hear about my old stomping grounds 8-) 8-)

09-09-2008, 08:24 PM
i hunt perch a lot and the gulp camo sandworm outfishes everything. outfishes morf grubs, outfishes sandcrabs.

find the 2" variety. if you cant, get the 6 inch ones and cut em in 3