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California Surf Fly Fishing Report

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California Surf Fly Fishing Report

Ben Engle Reports on 12.11.2019

So I had the day off and decided to hit as many beaches as possible.  We started at Baker beach at sunrise and one person in our cohort of 3 ended up catching perch on the south end of the beach.  Fishing was ok but I wasn't quite satisfied with the numbers so I decided to push up north.  

Stinson was absolutely great.  I noticed that since this last big storm the shelf has really moved in close to the shore and the perch are easily accessible.  Also its REDTAIL SEASON! Redtail Perch are some of our favorites because we can't get them year-round.  They also tend to be one of the largest species of perch we can target from our California beaches.  

Remember perch are simple creatures.  Don't worry about what fly you're using! Throw on something orange and flashy and small and they will grab it. If you need surf perch flies get'em here.   Just make sure you cover a lot of water and don't get sedentary.  These fish tend to school up in the most food abundant areas so it's all about finding buckets and troughs.  Sometimes the best-looking spot doesn't hold the fish so if you've made 20 casts without a perch at a spot it's plain and simple, move on down the beach. Soon enough you'll find a school of them!

Comments on this post (1)

  • Jan 06, 2020


    I watched an online video with you surf perch fishing. Like you, I deepened my fly fishing when I spent 4 years at Chico State. The West Branch of the Feather was killer good back then for browns. Butte Creek and Chico Creek were good and so were the sloughs off the Sac. I had a roommate in the Bradley Hall dorm at Chico that introduced me to still water fly fishing at Davis Lake. I have always been interested in catching surf perch and stripers on the fly. I caught a bunch of them on spinning gear around the bay, but just checked “striper-on-a-fly” off my bucket list this last MArch in Lake Havasu AZ. Anyway, thanks for the memory reboot about Chico! Bill Russell, Portland OR

    — Bill B Russell

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