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Stories by Daniel Powell

The larger fish are coming

Long-range season ends with a slow bite

It’s been an odd week in the blue with a humpback whale taking a tour of Ventura Harbor, and great whites posting up just out of the lineup as might the one surfer too far ...

Lake Dixon clean-up — do it for Dottie

The most famous largemouth bass in history

Dixon Lake is a smallish, 70-acre reservoir outside of Escondido on the skirts of the Daley Ranch. Even though the lake doesn’t cover much surface area, the dam, completed in 1971, holds up to 80-feet-deep ...

Disabled sailboat removed from cruise ship path; stoned stowaway stowed in county jail

The latest happenings of the Harbor Patrol

May 12 — HP impounded a vessel that was illegally anchored in Glorietta Bay without a valid permit. This vessel was recently impounded for the same violation. May 9 — HP were dispatched to the ...

Yellowtail going off between blows; CNR calico fishing heating up

The week in San Diego fishing

Rough seas and high winds kept the counts low early in the week as not many boats ventured out. By Wednesday, the wind started laying down, boats got out and the yellowtail went on the ...

Famosa Slough Nature and Bird Walk

Fed by San Diego River culvert, protected since the 1970s

Though it is estimated that 95 percent of California’s historical wetlands have been lost to development, one slough in that has survived human encroachment, albeit nearly completely surrounded by it, is Famosa Slough. Other than ...

Another opah caught

And the first local yellowfin tuna of 2017 hits the deck

Yellowfin tuna have moved into the overnight range within 80 miles of Point Loma. Though they just caught a scratch, a few good sized schools were sighted and metered. The bluefin tuna bite picked up ...

Surf Pups of San Diego classes

Paddling next to Liberty Station with your best friend

Samantha Lee of SUP Pups of San Diego came to town from Arizona, and like most folks that find the beach from the desert, she hit the water and stand up paddle-boarding became her favorite ...

Opah on the overnight

Bluefin brutish on anglers

The angler count fell off by nearly half as strong winds kept most of the boats in the slips midweek. Other than that, the fishing stayed about the same as the week before when the ...

Self Shape Surf Competition in at Seaside Reef in Cardiff

Cam Richards, Andrew Doheny, Nathan Strom, Leah Dawson will be competing on their self-made boards

Just off El Cajon Boulevard and 30th Street, there is a surf shop that has a mandatory day off to surf every Monday and you don’t even have to work there to work there. You ...

Three sots on a barge, petty theft, and drifting dingies

Plus a collision during the Red Bull races

April 22 — HP issued a citation to the owner of an illegally anchored vessel in the A1 anchorage (La Playa Cove). April 21 — HP issued a citation to the owner of an illegally ...

Larger yellows, smaller blues, and smokin’ bonito

Fun to catch, and excellent eating

The yellowtail bite slowed down substantially as over 500 of the 702 yellows caught this past week were caught last Sunday. That said, the average size went up to a more normal 15 to 20 ...

Free casting clinic by San Diego Fly Fishers at Lake Murray

What flies to use in San Diego tidal beds and shallow water

There are areas in San Diego for fly fishing where wading or float tubing access is easy and there are plenty of tidal beds and shallow water. Flies that resemble the prey of bass, halibut, ...

A look at what the Harbor Patrol has been up to this month

Calls to respond

April 15 — HP contacted subject aboard vessel adrift in N. Bay. After assisting boater with contacting commercial assistance, subject was also served with a temporary restraining order that was previously unserved. April 14 — ...

Bluefin tuna weighing 209.8 pounds caught

Largemouth bass heating up the tapwater

Saltwater Though there were a thousand less yellowtail caught this past week and the bluefin count was down a bit, several boats got limits or near limits on yellowtail and some of the bluefin tuna ...

Start at 4:00 a.m. for Mission Bay halibut

Classic kayak fishing tournament this Saturday

The first two tournaments I fished in were the first two organized kayak-fishing tournaments in San Diego; one off La Jolla and one in Mission Bay. Both are still going on, and though over time ...

Harbor Patrol investigates and responds

From observations to citations

April 1 — HP arrested subject with outstanding warrants aboard illegally moored vessel at Pepper Park dinghy dock. Vessel towed. March 29 — HP located an abandoned vessel that was dragging anchor in the main ...

Kayaker catches 68-pound white seabass off La Jolla

Corbina at night in the bay?

The big bluefin tuna to over 100 pounds within ¾ day range have a lot of boats out looking for them with mixed results, though the schools of yellowtail are still being found under kelp ...

Day at the Docks – Sunday, April 9 in Point Loma

Tie a knot, dunk a captain, fillet a fish

Every spring the Day at the Docks takes over the sportfishing landings at Scott and Emerald streets in Point Loma. In the normal migration patterns, this is usually the slow time of year, especially for ...

Reds, yellows, and the blues

Weekly fishing report

The rockfish bite locally and south of the line is heating up with lots of reds and vermilions coming over the rail. The lingcod numbers, along with whitefish, dropped off a little even though they ...

Santee Lakes catfish opener April 1 and 2

Take the carp — we don’t want them

The seven small lakes called Santee Lakes began as part of a recycling plant. In 1960, the district started recycling wastewater for irrigation and commercial uses. The seven lakes were at the end of that ...

Bluefin tuna close to home

Get some sashimi-grade yellowtail and possibly get in on a good bluefin bite.

There were whisperings not long after the Excel and the Eclipse each picked up a bluefin tuna in mid-February. They were here again, and within a day or two of Point Loma. A few schools ...

Every wharf has a rat

Happenings on and off the water

The week held nice weather and decent seas for the most part, and the anglers showed up to fish. The landings sent out the largest number of boats and anglers aboard so far this year. ...

San Diego State hosts Marine Science Day at their Pt. Loma lab

Hear hourly lectures, get your hands on sea squirts on starfish

San Diego State’s Coastal and Marine Institute Laboratory is located on a strip between Lindbergh’s terminal 2 parking lot and the channel that separates the airport from Liberty Station. The acre-and-a-quarter property boasts outdoor aquaria, ...

Last week to hoop up some bugs

Lobster season ends March 22

A decent weather week brought more anglers to the landings and private boaters to the local spots, resulting in mixed counts depending on who was targeting what. The yellowtail bite along the coast of northern ...

Partially intoxicated, couple argues while boat circles

Harbor Patrol highlights from January and February

February 7 — HP responded to an adrift dinghy near the Shelter Island Launch Ramp. The dinghy was taken to the HPD impound dock. February 6 — HP issued a citation to a boater who ...

After Greenough

Who will claim the title of Kneeboard Surfing USA champ this year?

Kneeboard surfing has a devout but small fraction of the surfing population keeping the sport alive. The kneeboard came along in the early 1950s as post-war economic success made waterskiing popular. By the turn of ...

Hooker heaven

Good weather and rockfish opening equals higher passenger and fish count for San Diego fleet

As mostly decent weather and doable seas coincided with the week of the March 1 rockfish opener, the passenger numbers and fish counts nearly doubled over previous weeks, even though nobody got out the last ...

Dorms closest to the surf

Did you know colleges have surf teams?

In 1997, I returned to San Diego to work on a couple university projects; a new parking garage at USD and then the new Commons building at Point Loma Nazarene. The Point Loma job was ...

Yellowtail at Colonet still biting between storms

Groundfish season reopens March 1

As the weather continues to bounce, seemingly weekly, between warm and storm, the local boats have been getting out as they can between gales and scoring well on sand bass, sculpin and a decent halibut ...

Bass fishing not the same

Try your tricks at Lower Otay Reservoir this Saturday

Since the advent of the plastic sit-on-top kayak and the internet, anglers have posted shots of their catches, forgetting that the background might hold secrets. Plus, there’s the explosion of information on rigging, technique, and ...

Lucifer keeps them in the slips

Lowest weekly angler count in years

The strongest so far in a series of Pacific storms, aptly named Lucifer, slammed into southern California Friday, shutting down the sportfishing fleet and keeping local anglers on not-so-dry land. High winds built seas up ...

Outrigger canoes for newbies

This is a watersport.

That I haven’t been in an outrigger canoe doesn’t mean I haven’t wished for one. I remember when my first two-piece paddle snapped while “digging in” (paddling hard) a couple miles off La Jolla in ...

413-pound yellowfin tuna caught

Could world record be beaten this year?

A 413-pound yellowfin tuna was caught by angler Kevin Boyle of West Hills about 15 miles off Tres Marias Islands aboard the Constitution during a three-and-half-day trip out of Puerto Vallarta. Several other large fish ...

San Salvador for lovers

Sweetheart of a cruise

In 1542 from a 100-foot Spanish galleon carrying officers, crew, slaves, a priest, and the ship’s captain, explorer Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, landed in San Diego Bay near Point Loma. They were the first Europeans to ...

First bluefin tuna of the season reported off Colonet

Fish are biting off the Baja coast.

On February 4, the first bluefin tuna of the year was landed aboard the Eclipse at Colonet. It was reported as a small 15-pounder though signs are good for another epic season for the hard-fighting ...

Check-box blacksmiths and the Black Smiths

Either way, rest assured, contemporary blacksmithing is a thing.

Dear Hipster: I was reading that column you did a while back about hipster baby names, and I had an idea. You know how some names are basically supergeneric white-guy names? I mean, here’s looking ...

Mission Bay marsh opens the chain-link fence — for a day

Love your wetlands on February 4

What is now the Kendall-Frost marsh reserve at the northeast corner of Mission Bay Park was acquired by the city and set aside in 1965. Since then, the De Anza Cove trailer park, Campland on ...

January Harbor Patrol highlights

Fishy fisherman arrested, hostage situation at Kona Kai

January 1 HP responded to a subject who had a dizzy spell and crashed his bicycle into the bay next to the Star of India Ship. A HP diver and vessel unit retrieved him from ...

A tough day of bass fishing

"It was murder trying to get a biter over fourteen inches long."

Dock Totals January 25-28: 293 anglers aboard 19 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 36 yellowtail, 39 calico bass, 73 sand bass, 145 rockfish, 122 sanddab, 2 halfmoon, 3 halibut, 43 ...

Where surfing pros come from

The next Rachel Tilly could emerge from Scholastic Surf Series

Southern California’s Scholastic Surf league is divided into three areas: San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles to Santa Barbara. Each high school team consists of six to nine shortboard men, three longboard men, two ...

Weather puts a damper on fishing

See the top boats of the week

Dock Totals 1/15 -1/21 675 anglers aboard31 boats out of San Diego landings this past week caught 72 yellowtail, 22 calico bass, 65 sand bass, 10 bonito, 1 barracuda, 1,779 rockfish, 1 sheephead, 3 sanddab, ...

Children's Pool was just for kids

Seals' Occupy Children’s Pool movement holding strong

Ask an adult who grew up in the San Diego area about his hometown and he’ll say something akin to, “It’s a great place to be a kid.” Our weather, beaches, and the ocean provide ...

Colinet producing decent yellowtail and lingcod

Weekly fishing report for Baja and So Cal

Inshore: The half-day boats have been fishing the midcolumn off the kelp for sculpin and calico bass, and the flats for sand bass and halibut with mixed success. The closure on rockfishing and the weather ...

Lord of the wind

Windsurfers and kitesurfers head south for annual competition

Los Barriles sits on the Sea of Cortez halfway between La Paz and Cabo San Lucas. Known mostly for its fishery, this area enjoys wintertime winds that funnel down the Gulf of California from the ...

One of those fish that would not give up

It's hard to land a big tuna

Inshore: With the water temp just below 60 degrees and rockfishing closed in U.S. waters until March 1, the local boats have been concentrating their efforts toward sculpin and sand bass. A few flurries of ...

Allegedly drunk sailor collides with several moored vessels on Christmas Day

How the Harbor Patrol spent the holidays

December 26 HP was contacted regarding two vessels that were not permitted and illegally anchored in the A-5 Anchorage, Glorietta Bay. Both owners were contacted and issued citations. December 25 HP were dispatched to the ...

Beach volleyball — a San Diego thing

Find a 2x2 or 4x4 game at Mission Bay Park

One gray winter morning in 1997, about this time of year, I was working on the old Federal Building in Balboa Park. We were beginning the demo for the new Hall of Champions project. As ...

Plane down in La Jolla Cove? What plane?

December's emergency calls — or lack thereof

December 18 10:40 Swimmer: Sunset Cliffs Call Box Call, check the welfare on a surfer possibly tired and cold at Osprey. Lifeguard, Jet unit and a lifeguard rescue vessel respond, surfer clear lifeguards clear. 14:38 ...

Last week of rockfishing

Full gunnysacks for the holidays

Inshore: The local boats took advantage of some decent weather between fronts and found some decent bottom fishing for the anglers aboard. Entering into the last few days of rockfishing before that fishery closes on ...

A New Year without El Niño

Recreational groundfish season comes to an end

On New Year’s Eve, local groundfish might have a reason to celebrate. In the angling community over the past couple winters, our lucky New Year’s baby has been the El Niño conditions that kept yellowtail ...

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