San Diego is known for many things, but one of them is something our town was built upon: the fishing industry. San Diego’s waterfront was once a booming fishing hub for brands such as StarKist and Bumble Bee, which is still located here today.
In fact, more than half a century ago, more than 40,000 people found work at the docks, on fishing boats and at the canneries, making tuna fishing the third largest industry in San Diego. While that has changed over the years and many of the big companies have left for other locations, the scene in San Diego evolved into a sport-fishing paradise.
The docks at H&M Landing in Point Loma are teaming with more than 30 sport fishing boats that take private and open-party charters on every kind of adventure, from half-day trips all the way up to 21-day, long-range adventures into deep Baja California and beyond.
There is also a great fleet available out of Mission Bay at Seaforth Sport Fishing, located just inside the Mission Beach and Ocean Beach Jetty. Ryan Bostian, owner of the charter boat San Diego and widely regarded as the best ¾ day boat in Southern California, is a native San Diegan, and has cut his teeth on fishing boats at this landing since he was 15 years old. He has been the San Diego’s full-time captain and owner since 2006.
What to bring
Fishing gear (you can rent everything you need at the dock)
Long-sleeve shirt or windbreaker
Sunglasses (with polarized lenses, if you have them)
Snack bars and water
Dramamine (if you get seasick)
Cash for meals, drinks and tipping the crew
A good attitude
Book a trip
Seaforth Sport Fishing (with Captain Bostian)
Address: 1717 Quivira Road, Mission Bay
Phone: (619) 224-3383
Address: 2803 Emerson St., Shelter Island
Phone: (619) 222-1144
Address: 2580 Ingraham St., Mission Bay
Phone: (619) 226-2929
When asked about the fishing conditions going into our summer months, Bostian said, “The local fishing over the last 12 months has been part of a record breaking three-year period due to El Niño. Even though we may be on the backside of El Niño, we are still experiencing great fishing due to warmer water temps.”
Fish being caught on his boat include bluefin tuna, yellowtail, yellowfin tuna and dorado. With such great fishing, if you have never been, now is the time to check it out.
For first-time fishers looking to make their trip more successful, Bostian said, “I would recommend that the first-time angler rent the fishing equipment from the boat or landing they are going out of rather than buy gear or borrow gear from a friend. The rental tackle will always be perfect for the style of fishing that is going on and that will help you have a better experience.”
Another tip Bostian provided was a great one: “I would tell the first-time angler to enjoy the entire ocean experience and bring a nice pair of waterproof shoes or at least a change of socks. It gets wet out there.”
In addition to Bostian’s advice, don’t be afraid to ask questions or ask the deckhands for help, and if you catch the jackpot fish, always give that money to the deckhands as a tip, trust us.