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By Zach Cavanagh 

Dana Wharf Fish Report

Bass fishing improves as water warms up again

By Zach Cavanagh

Bass fishing has picked up again, and some anglers pulled in a monster 62-pounder for the fleet at Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching.

In his weekly report, Captain Brian Woolley said that the water off the coast had warmed up to 66 degrees from the previous week. Bass fishing was slightly more difficult at the beginning of the week due to murky water and cool temperatures from a swell that came through. However, as the water warmed up, so did the bass fishing, especially for the half-day trips. Those trips were also catching good numbers of sheephead and barracuda. Anglers were getting good action on calico bass with artificial baits such as jerk baits.

There were several notable seabass catches as well, including a 62-pound fish caught on the Current on Saturday, June 26. The big catch was hooked by 7-year-old Regan Udall with live mackerel bait and assisted by her father, Sam Udall. The fish was pulled in along the coast between Dana Point Harbor and San Clemente Pier.

The three-quarter-day trips have seen similar action to the half-day trips. At the start of last week, when the water was cool and murky, these trips fished deep for sculpin, so, as Woolley said, the fleet “could send our fishermen home with some nice fillet bags of taco meat.” The three-quarter-day trips have picked up on the bass as well, along the kelp, using fly-lined live bait and artificial bait.

The longer trips have been finding good areas for yellowtail fishing. The Fury went on a two-day trip that caught nearly 80 yellowtail, with some of the fish hitting 40 pounds. Anglers there found success on dropper-looped sardines and yo-yo irons. On the Clemente, there have been hauls of bonito and some mixed varieties of bottom fish.

This 62-pound seabass catch by 7-year-old Regan Udall was assisted by her father, Sam Udall, while on a trip on the Current on Saturday, June 26. Photo Courtesy of Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching

Here are the latest fish counts from Dana Wharf Sportfishing & Whale Watching:

June 30 – 11 boats, 184 anglers: 10 bluefin tuna, 102 calico bass, 7 sheephead, 8 sand bass, 1 whitefish, 10 rockfish, 2 vermilion rockfish, 2 bocaccio, 5 barracuda, 1 halibut, 1 yellowtail, 434 bass released.

June 29 – 7 boats, 151 anglers: 6 bluefin tuna, 58 calico bass, 6 sheephead, 4 sand bass, 2 sculpin, 1 whitefish, 273 bass released.

June 28 – No counts.

June 27 – 11 boats, 283 anglers: 11 yellowtail, 88 rockfish, 85 barracuda, 60 calico bass, 50 whitefish, 24 vermilion rockfish, 19 sheephead, 14 bonito, 12 bocaccio, 12 sand bass, 1 lingcod, 1 sculpin, 1 treefish, 706 bass released.

June 26 – 10 boats, 240 anglers: 8 yellowtail, 1 white seabass, 78 calico bass, 39 vermilion rockfish, 28 rockfish, 20 sheephead, 16 bonito, 16 sand bass, 8 whitefish, 6 sanddab, 3 sculpin, 1 bocaccio, 1 halibut, 1 blue perch, 648 bass released.

June 25 – 10 boats, 221 anglers: 75 calico bass, 12 sheephead, 5 sanddab, 4 sand bass, 3 barracuda, 1 sculpin, 1 treefish, 828 bass released.

June 24 – 5 boats, 119 anglers: 115 sculpin, 78 whitefish, 48 rockfish, 10 calico bass, 10 bonito, 9 yellowtail, 4 sheephead, 2 sand bass, 1 barracuda, 114 calico bass released.


Zach Cavanagh Zach Cavanagh is the sports editor for Picket Fence Media. Zach is a California Journalism Award winner and has covered sports in Orange County since 2013. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @ZachCav and follow our sports coverage on Twitter @SouthOCSports. Email at

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