Posted by: socalsalty | February 4, 2011


A barracuda killed Nemos mom! (picture courtesy of Disney Pixar)

I often ask new anglers on the boats, “What do you want to catch today?”  One of the most mentioned fish is Barracuda.  Maybe its the song by old school Seattle rockers, Heart.  Maybe it’s Finding Nemo.  Maybe it’s the classic 70’s American muscle car.  Whatever it is, the barracuda is definitely a fish that has captured the imagination of the non-angling public.

Here in So Cal, one of the reasons that the barracuda is popular is that they can be caught “throwing iron”.  A well placed jig on a medium to fast retrieve is just the ticket to hook into a ‘cuda.  Try throwing the jig and let it sink to varying depths.  Change up your speed of retrieval to see what works.  My favorite colors are a plain chrome or blue and white.  Popular brands of these jigs are Salas and Tady.  Minimum keeper size is 28 inches. Barracuda start to show up offshore (especially Catalina Island) around April, and can be caught near shore in the Summer and early Fall.

So Cal Iron: smaller one is ideal for the canal

There’s a canal next to the mouth of the Marina del Rey harbor with a bridge over it.  This spot is a fun spot that Jake and I found one day after a slow day at the Venice Beach Pier.  The cool thing about that spot is when the water warms up, you can attract baby ‘cudas throwing iron from the bridge.  Better yet, you can watch them attack your jig on the retrieve because of your vantage point high above the water…not something you normally get to do fishing from a sportboat.

Saltwater flyfishing is something that I’ve been trying to learn about lately.  Today, there’s a story on Earth Sports describing how to catch barracuda on a saltwater fly in Florida.  Sounds like they hit on different colors down there, but as always the rule of thumb is to “Match the Hatch” and throw something that resembles the local diet of your target fish.

Whether saltwater flyfishing in Florida, or throwing iron in SoCal, barracudas are a fish that gets your heart rate up!  That is why they are #8 on the Top 10 Saltwater Fish in So Cal.

Dewey was influenced by Hearts "Barracuda" (Pic courtesy of One Cool Tuna)


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