Torrey Pines North or South Parking Lot?

Discussion in 'Surf, Piers, & Jetties' started by sound_designer, May 10, 2018.

  1. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    Hi guys, I surf fish every week out of Oxnard and Ventura but I'll be down in your waters later this week for work and will be able to get some fishing in, starting Sunday. I have a couple of questions I hope you can help out with.

    1. What do you think is a better place to start at, The North or South parking lot? Are the lots open at sunrise?

    2. I should be getting down to the water about 6:30a so I'll be catching the incoming tide which should top out around 8:37a.

    3. I got a good close-up view from Google maps of lifeguard tower 1 just below the South parking lot. I'm wondering if there is any beach left to stand on when high tide is there? I wear waders and will be wearing a shirt with a big Tarpon on it if you want to say hi.

    4. If you have some alternative suggestions and want to share, I'm open to hear them. Looking forward to seeing some different species down there. I'm assuming TP is a decent place to start as that's where my research led me. Thanks in advance for the answers folks!

    LG_Tower_1.JPG
     
  2. Tmaio123

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    I've fished the south PL area before and didn't even get a bite
     
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  3. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    I just saw all the free street parking on that "Country Hwy S21" so that answers one of my questions if the South Lot area is decent to fish in! :)
     
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  4. spideyjg

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    depends tide and surf height but many place you can run out of land.
     
  5. William Ritchie

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    Both N and S lots have a parking fee, along the road is free . As you travel the beach to the south from tower #1 the structure in the surf is more abundant if your looking to fish up against the rock piles and reefs thats the ticket . North of tower #1 is mainly soft structure as in holes troughs ETC .They have been putting a lot of sand from the estuary on the beach to the north of tower #2 There can be some good areas to the north of the outlet on the Delmar side Dependent on tide and your ability to read the water . Good luck !
     
    #5 William Ritchie, May 10, 2018
    Last edited: May 10, 2018
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  6. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    Tmaio123 - You have any luck going more North on TP? If I park off the street, I can start there at least!

    SpideyJG - Yeah from my picture it does look like the water has worked up there lately...with new found parking option, I may start further up.

    This winter's storms have thrashed the structure where I usually fish and I can't get a good read of what TP has from the arial shots I've looked at. However, I imagine it's been pretty rough too so I'll just have to take a look in person.

    Salad has also been an issue for us up north for the past couple of months where most of last year, I didn't have to deal with any at all.
     
  7. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    Lots of great info in your reply, really appreciate it. Half of the fun for me is reading the water so that Delmar side sounds interesting as well. Thanks a lot William.
     
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  8. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach
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    I like TP, just don't know much about it lately.. I fish elsewhere myself.. I mean, LJ is half the distance for me.. Less maybe.. Lol
     
  9. old_rookie

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    It is free. And the rest of the SD County knows that it is free. I rarely have been able to park there, even at 7am on a Saturday morning.

    If $ is a limitation for you, another option for parking is along the street - Google Maps
    you can park along the street either north, south or east of that intersection in the middle of the map link I provided.
    You should find an open spot at 6:30am - if the Hwy parking doesn't work. Or just pay to park if you are good with that.

    As for fishing, I've caught leopards along the south end. To the north, leopards, smooth hounds, perch.
     
  10. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    Werfless, maybe I'll try LJ before work on M or T. It's actually closer to my hotel as well. Sunday I'll be driving down from Santa Clarita so I'll give TP a shot.

    Old_Rookie, thanks for taking the time to give the map link. I'm hoping Mother's Day will foul up the Country Hwy parking situation you mention but if not, I'll look at the area you pointed to. If there aren't many spaces, I'll go ahead and pay...don't want to take your guys' regular spots and don't mind paying for a day since it probably goes straight to the fund you guys use for stocking the ocean with fish. You do stock the oceans down there, right? :) Hah!
     
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  11. Delorian

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    I fished south last week and liked it. Nice beach with structure. Flat rock was fun. However it’s a bit far for me so I’m probably going to try swamis next time. FWIW I hooked up a 17” halibut at TP last week.
     
  12. spideyjg

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    Swamis can run out of land with about 5 foot tide or surf. Be wary if you walk out in low tide.
     
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  13. Werfless

    Werfless The Coach
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    sound_designer .. Make sure you look at the excellent sticky post by Jenx at the top of the surf fishing section for the boundaries of the LJ mlpas (if you haven't already)..
     
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  14. kmayhugh61

    kmayhugh61 Well-Known Member

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    Welcome to SD! I've never had good luck at Ventura or the Nard, so I might need you to fill me in!

    1. As others have stated parking is free along the road, and if you're getting there at sunrise you should have plenty free parking options.

    2. For medium rising to high tides I've had better luck at the southern end of TP. There's an area called Flat Rock (about a 10-15 min walk from the south lot), and its a great spot to fish from as long as you can safely get on/off it. That area has great structure and holds a variety of species. For falling to low tides I've had better luck at the river mouth and north of it. There seems to be a consistent inshore trough that seems to hold tons of BSPs and beans.

    3. South of the south lot the tide can reach all the way to the bluffs at times. Which can make it a bit treacherous, but since you have waders you can just take your time.

    4. If you feel adventurous further south is Blacks beach. Its clothing optional which makes it "interesting" but also way less busy. There can be great fishing there at times. I was at TP Tuesday afternoon and the salad was pretty thick on every cast. Only got 1 decent BSP on sandworms. Saw plenty of Sandcrab beds but they were all too small.

    Good Luck!
     
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  15. tjthegreat1

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    There is a free lot in the middle of the beach off the highway but you have to get there early in the morning on busy days.
     
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  16. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    Initially, I was a little lost about the various MPA’s down in the SD County area and I had stumbled on the Jenx maps...pure gold! In general, everyone on this board is awesome and appreciate all of you taking the time to help a fellow angler out.

    I had seen you guys post about flat rock in a few other threads and after kmayhugh61 mentioned it here, I finally googled Flat Rock San Diego and can't believe how big and FISHY it looks. If the water level looks safe, I'm there for sure!

    I promise to post a follow-up (skunk or not) tell let you know what I experienced.

    I'll be checking the boards until I drive down so any additional tips are totally welcome!
     
    #16 sound_designer, May 11, 2018
    Last edited: May 11, 2018
  17. torykian

    torykian Well-Known Member

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    Cover lots of ground in either direction. I guarantee you will catch something.
     
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  18. Larry M

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    If you want to fish Black's Beach you can park above at the glider park for free. It's a tricky hike down and back up, especially carrying gear. I've never have fished there, just went surfing there when I was in my 20s.
    I could probably hike down, but would no doubt have a hard time on the return trip. LOL
     
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  19. sound_designer

    sound_designer Well-Known Member

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    As promised....

    SUNDAY: Got there at 6:30p Started just South of the restrooms...where the cliffs start. TONS of salad. Threw my double-dropper rig (squid bottom & sandworm on top) to get under it and hit a couple BSP. Kept working, walking towards Flat Rock. The salad thinned out a bit as I went further South so I started throwing my C-Rig with squid. Only one more BSP for a lot of casts so I switched to a Sandworm. Got two more. I decided not to mess with flat rock. Tide was high by the time I got down there. Salad was still bad the entire time I fished that side of the beach. Decided to call it a day and start walking back. I caught the smallest BSP I've ever landed...looked like it just popped out of momma's belly and would be more at home in a goldfish bowl. Nothing else after that. Got to the restrooms and wow...+1 San Diego! Pivacy stalls and no stainless steel Prison toilets?!?! Good hand-washing stations too? I think I'd get spoiled if I lived down there. :) Didn't see any other fishermen. I got a parking space right off the Torrey Pines Rd in one of those angles spots.

    MONDAY: 10 minute drive from my hotel near the Karl Strauss on Scranton. In my normal life, I drive from Santa Clarita to Oxnard every week to fish (1 hour each way) so this 10 minute thing is just plain awesome. I decided to work the other direction of the beach today. There was still a bunch of salad but it was more of the manageable type. For the most part, I could bring in my line and just wiggle the stuff off, in the air. Lots of little pieces. Started and finished with my double-dropper. I had thrown away all my leftover squid from the previous day (didn't want to stink up my hotel room fridge) and fished all sandworms. Turned out to be a YFC day. I actually like catching them because of the way they hit. I caught five singles and one double. With the heavier weight on my dropper I was able to throw out past a couple breaks and that's where I found a school. These were all in the first 45 minutes or so then it just shut off. Just before leaving after 20 minutes of nothing, I caught a Jack Smelt. About 100 yards north of me was a excavator digging up sand and building a mound in the surf. Anyone know what they were doing? Definitely a lot of construction going around up and down that road.

    TUESDAY: Worse day for catching for me. Very light salad too! Ended up with two BSP and a bat ray that escaped me < 10 feet before I was going to beach him. That was fine with me...I don't really like un-hooking rays. He was small, about dinner plate sized. No excavator today and I saw about three surfishermen a lot further North than myself. Maybe a few hundred yards? This was around 6:30a-7:45a I think. Surf was REALLY rough that day and the intervals between waves pretty relentless.

    Overall, I found the beach to have a super shallow depth. I'd walk way out there and still not see any depth before I threw out my line. There was a lot of soft structure though, really nice troughs and the returns and rips were really easy to read. I also seem to burn through a lot more worms up in Oxnard than I did on this trip. I always get little ones that nip my tails off where at Torrey Pines, they all seem to just grab my bait and end up with a good, solid hook-set. I only grabbed a couple of pictures but attached them anyhow. Thanks to everyone for the advice, I'll probably be down in a month or two so I'll hit up some other areas on the next trip.

    IMG_3763.jpg

    IMG_3761.jpg
     
  20. old_rookie

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    Thanks for the report.
     
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