Many types of deep-water ocean sport fish are often caught at the end of Santa Monica Pier. The breakwater nearby contributes to the presence of these fish. You can find many species of fish here, including bass (sea, calico, sand), black cod, walleye, rainbow perch, sargo, black croaker, mackerel, halibut, turbot, yellowfin, rays, corbina, and sharks. Sportfishing from Santa Monica Pier, or any other public California pier, doesn’t require a license for sport fishing.
Surfperch fishing peaks from October through June. Striped Bass are commonly caught between April and September. California Halibut peak from May through August. Catching barracuda, white seabass and yellowtail is possible in the deeper waters the end of the pier at the fishing dock. Using the best spinning reels and top fishing line is recommended. Note that if you catch a Black Seabass, which is an endangered species, it must be returned to the water.
You can fish from the pier’s upper level, but to be closer to the water and have better access, use the lower fishing deck, which can be reached from the stairway at the end of the pier.
For beginners or light travelers, the Santa Monica Pier Bait & Tackle Shop, located at the pier’s end, rents fishing equipment during business hours, which are posted on the shop’s website.
Many anglers rely on the Santa Monica pier for a food supply. However, watch for “contamination” signs on the pier which indicate when no fish caught from the pier is safe for consumption. Otherwise, check the California Office of Environmental Health Hazards for a list of fish that are safe to eat.
Santa Monica Pier Fish:
Santa Monica Pier boat ramps:
The following boat ramps provide access to Santa Monica Pier.