I actually caught a legal flat fish!?!?

Discussion in 'Surf, Piers, & Jetties' started by Egorham, Apr 25, 2021.

  1. Egorham

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    I've known about the surf halibut fishery for a while now, but never had much success. I lucked into a legal once early on when a buddy called me in to a bite, but had yet to get one on my own. I never really committed to it, but have put in a ton of casual hours at different north county beaches.

    Last week I made plans to meet my dad at the beach to do some old school, high low, bait and wait fishing. Immediately upon arrival I noticed some holes and structure that I've never seen before. Crazy how much different the beaches are after all the winter storms.

    I still baited up a blood worm and squid strip and cast into the deepest hole I could see. No immediate nibbles which is never a great sign. Then I got snagged (extremely rare for this beach) and broke off my whole rig.

    Then I noticed an older gentlemen who was clearly fishing for halibut. Bait caster, working a hole patiently, he seemed like he knew what he was doing. So I went to talk to him. Tried to walk that fine line asking for some tips/advice without being like TELL ME YOUR SPOTS AND SECRETS. He was generous though and passed a couple gems of knowledge my way.

    A bit later I notice he caught a fish! It was a leopard shark, but for me, catching anything on the LC is a win, so I was happy for him. Maybe 5 minutes later I see him catch a halibut. He's 100 yards down the beach or so but I could clearly see it was a decent sized flat fish. Okay, now I really need to try. I had my 9' steelhead rod with a LC tied on with me, so I picked it up and fired a cast up the longest hole.

    I began a slow and steady retrieve and my rod loaded up? I was in disbelief, I help the tip high for a second to confirm and felt a head shake. Holy crap I hooked a fish! As the case with my other surf halibut, it didn't really put up much of a fight. I was in disbelief when I saw it in the shallows for the first time, it wasn't a dink!

    I slid it up on the sand and was in total disbelief. I work on a 6-pack and we've been catching a lot of lings lately, so I knew right away this thing should be over 22". I busted out my tape measure I always bring and never use and he was 24"!

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    So thank you to everyone who posts the halibut they catch. If I wasn't getting constant reminders it was possible I may have given up long ago.

    I went back the next day at the same tide and didn't get a bite. That's okay though, had to go and see if I could get another. I'll be chasing these things this year with more confidence than ever, but am ready for another 10 skunk sessions in a row as well.
     
  2. perch killer

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    Lesson learned. Nicely done !
     
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  3. Shawn H

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    10 skunks in a row is definitely the truth. But man is it worth it lol
     
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  4. SandyPheet

    SandyPheet Active Member

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    Beautiful! Envious!
     
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  5. David J. Davey

    David J. Davey Well-Known Member

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    Gotta kiss a lot of frogs before that Prince comes along! Congrats.
     
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  6. tjthegreat1

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    Excellent! Good work and thank you for posting!
     
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  7. torykian

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    yeah dawg!
     
  8. dj thrillz

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    Great catch!
     
  9. Bassnbeans

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    Fantastic, brother!
    I know that beach! I recognize that pattern of stones behind you. Pretty sure Ive seen you kick *** there before. LOL!
     
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  10. Easy619

    Easy619 Tug Addict
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    Nice catch man! It's definitely rewarding to catch legal halibut in the surf
     
  11. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach ..RIP my friends
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    If anyone deserves it, you do...
     
  12. Egorham

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    Thanks everyone. Grunion run this week, one of you will be the next lucky *******.

    Thanks Coach. I've definitely put in some time out there. If it wasn't for everyone else reminding me it's possible now and then I woulda moved on.


    AHH crap, do I need to blur out the background too? JK. It's north county, I fish oceanside, carlsbad, and encinitas. I honestly feel the beaches up here are fine but there's no reason to drive here if it's not the closest beach to you. I feel like people have a lot more success at TP, MB, etc., but maybe that's just cause I suck at this still.
     
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