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Ocean Peir Fishing


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I am going to the san fran area next week and we are going to go pier fishing. what kind of gear do i need for that? can i do that with light northern gear or do i need special stuff.

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Don't use anything that can't be used in salt water.

I've used everything from 8lb test on ML action rods to 100lb mono main line on a bigger penn senator and beefy tarpon/shark rod from the same pier in florida and had success. Lighter gear gets shrimp for bait. Heavier gear gets cutbait or whole fish.

Just don't put a 6oz chunk of cut bait on a 9/0 circle hook and fish it with 120 yards of 8lb test. That's asking for trouble.

A long MH rod for long casts, a big spool of 30lb braid, sinkers, and circle hooks of various sizes will let you target anything up to 20lbs with a variety of bait. I sometimes also like using large floats if I've been seeing sharks or other fish around near the surface.

I have no experience with fishing piers on the pacific however, but I can't imagine that the technique is any different than what I employ in the gulf.

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I fish the Pacific about 40 days per year or more. Mostly offshore. Well, you can use a freshwater rod you'd use for Muskies of Northerns. As advised by the other answer, use common sense with line. Wash the odd immediately after use. Put it the shower and wash it down. I have a freshwater rod rated 12-25 I often take just to play with fish that are in the 12-25 category when offshore.

Reels. A fair amount of people use Mitchell 5500 and 6500s. Again, the key is washing well with freshwater and, if you now how dissemble and clean it out. Do not wash it by putting it under a heavy stream of water--this just drives salt into the reels deeper. I use Calcuttas for light saltwater and they take it well.

Remember, on a pier landing the fish can be an issue. If you hook a 20lb fish, most liley a shark, how will you get it 10-20 feet up to you?

There are also charters located right at the piers in SF. Mostly salmon. These are located near fisherman's wharf.

Have fun--you never know what might come up when in th salt.

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I grew up peir/surf fishing in NC. different coast but the same plays. Like the others said for gear, just wash it well and you will be fine. Any medium to medium/heavy pole will work for the most part. We used to cath 20-50lb nurse/sand sharks all the time, just need to beach them and have another person go grab them rather than try to lift them to the peir. You should be able to rent a surf pole for under $20 or $30 a day. For bait, we used to catch spots with an ugly stick, big white bluegill lookin guys with a black spot on the gill plate. and use them for bait on the surf rod. Or most peir shops should sell things like mullet you can use for bait. We have caught everything from makerel to bonitos to sharks on mullet.

Or just walk around and cast northern/musky rigs. In Akumal last year i got a tiny tiny puffer on a black and blue booyaa pitchin jig for some bonefish. The surf is a different game, pretty much anything and everything can be used to catch pretty much anything and everything lol

also, in the san fran area, if you can find anchovies schooling near shore chances are the stripers are near by.

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