Posted by: socalsalty | November 6, 2011

Trip Report: Fall Rockfishing on the Spitfire

Sunrise over Santa Monica Bay

Saturday I fished locally and rode the Spitfire out of MDR Sportfishing.  My buddy Manny met me at Dock 52 to get onboard.  We were joined by a bunch of the regulars from the Tradition, out of Redondo Sportfishing, so I got to finally meet Jimmy Bass who’s family operates that boat.  The Tradition is currently being repowered, but will be back online soon.

I hadn’t been on the boat since the giant squid encounter in September.  It was nice to see the crew, especially Capt. Jeremy who I hadn’t fished with in a long time (Capt. John was helming on the squid trip).  Jeremy was joined by lead deckhand John, Andrew, Mike in the galley, and pinhead Julian.  Forty anglers were out for the trip.

Jimmy with a jig caught salmon grouper

Beautiful conditions out there…it was cold when we started, but after the sun came up it was warm, sunny and pretty calm on the water.  There was live squid and sardines for bait.  No surprises this day, we were going rockfishing.  As we headed out, I rigged my 30lb setup, tying it up with 2 dropper loops.  I put an orange shrimp fly on the top loop and a 3/0 light line circle hook on the bottom with a glow bead in front of the hook.  I started with 10 oz. of weight on the bottom.  At the first stop, we were in 200+ feet of water.  We started with a drift on the spot but eventually anchored up it.  A few smaller bocaccio at this stop.  I managed to get one of them.  Jimmy caught a nicer one jig fishing with a silver diamond jig on the bottom and a dropper loop tied above.

The ling wasn't hitchiking on Tom 😉

When it slowed down, we made a short move and anchored up on another spot not too far away.  More salmon grouper, but things got a little more interesting when a legal ling was caught.  Nothing fancy, but a ling is a ling.  It was taken on live squid.  Some variety of rockfish were taken here too…several nice belindas that could be had fairly easily if you fished up off the bottom with small hooks and strips of squid.  I saw a chucklehead, a couple barberpoles, and a handful of reds, some of which were quality 3-4 lb’ers.  At one point on this stop, I was fishing on the starboard side, up by the bow.  I heard some excitement on the other side and put my pole down to see what was up.  When I rounded the corner, I found Tom, one of the Tradition regulars with this nice ling!  Jimmy later weighed it out to see that it was a 13lb’er.  Tom ended up winning jackpot with this fish.  I was chatting with him later when we were in the filet line and funny thing is, he’d rather eat sculpin than ling and gave all his meat away.

Manny doubles up on sculpin

Well Tom would get his wish.  Jeremy always likes to end the day on a good note and makes sure people go home with fish.  He has some sculpin spots dialed in and he didn’t disappoint.  In about 180 ft, right in front of LAX, everyone limited up on sculpin.  The first few that came over the rail were a really nice size too!  Only guessing, but the biggest one was at least 2 lbs!

Another nice day on the water.  I took home a limit of sculpin and almost there on rockfish.  Great to fish with Manny and Jimmy and to meet some new friends on the boat.  Everyone had at least a limit of sculpin and grouper to take home.  The 2 lings that were taken vied for jackpot.  Here’s the official count. 

As always, thanks to Capt. Jeremy and his crew, and MDR Sportfishing.  Tight lines!

John with battling lings for the jackpot weigh in



  1. “Limit” of sculpin again, eh?! Good job, Salty! If you have extra, I can take one off of your hand 😉

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: