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The Hearst State Park Fishing Pier, commonly referred to as the San Simeon Pier, stands as a historic edifice of the fishing community in California. Originally built in 1878, it has served multiple purposes, from a vital point of maritime trade to a charming destination for recreational fishing. With a length of 850 feet, it offers breathtaking seascapes and has been a fertile ground for fishing, particularly from late spring to fall when migratory species visit and enrich the local marine diversity.The pier’s enduring popularity among anglers stems from the variety of fish that can be caught here. The peak fishing seasons witness a blend of resident and migratory species, making it an exciting fishing spot for both seasoned and novice anglers. The San Simeon Pier, rebuilt in 1957 and lengthened in 1969 after storm damage, now ranks as the 25th longest pier in California and continues to be a cherished spot for anglers and families alike.Fish commonly caught off the pier include:Barred Surfperch and Calico Surfperch: Known to frequent the surf area, they can be effectively caught using live sand crabs or bloodworms.White Croaker: These fish are often caught throughout the year on various parts of the pier using small pieces of anchovy or squid.Walleye and Silver Surfperch: Typically found from the surf zone to mid-pier, anglers catch them using multi-hook rigs baited with anchovy or squid.Flatfish: Species like the English sole and starry flounder are often hooked near the inshore cleaning station using ghost shrimp or pieces of anchovy.Pacific Mackerel, Jack Mackerel, and Jacksmelt: These pelagic fish are caught during summer and fall using multi-hook bait rigs or small pieces of squid or salted anchovy.Red Snapper (Juvenile Bocaccio): Mostly caught on artificial bait rigs near the bottom or mid-depth, they are subject to specific limits to ensure sustainable fishing practices.Additionally, striped seaperch, rubberlip seaperch, and buttermouth perch are also found in the pier waters, especially in the fall. Anglers can utilize bloodworms or fresh mussel around the mussel-covered pilings to attract these species. A variety of rockfish, cabezon, lingcod, sharks, and rays also grace the waters around the pier, providing anglers with a rich fishing experience.The pier falls within the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, signifying its ecological importance and the need for conservation. The Coastal Discovery Center at the base of the pier operates collaboratively with the sanctuary to enhance visitors’ understanding of the local marine environment and its historical context.Fishing at San Simeon Pier requires no license, and the pier is equipped with cleaning stations and benches, contributing to a convenient and enjoyable fishing day. As always, anglers should stay informed of local fishing restrictions, including marine conservation areas and marine reserves, to ensure a responsible fishing practice.The area surrounding the pier is rich in history and culture, with Hearst Castle, a former Hearst warehouse now operating as the Hearst Ranch Winery, and Sebastian’s General Store adding to the charm and legacy of San Simeon. The presence of zebras, descendants of those once part of Hearst’s private zoo, grazing alongside cattle is a surreal and enchanting sight that continues to fascinate visitors.For those looking to explore beyond the pier, the San Simeon Point trail offers hikers picturesque views and varied wildlife, including elephant seal rookeries. The trail encapsulates the beauty and tranquility of the area, adding another layer to the enriching experience that San Simeon provides.This combination of rich fishing, historical significance, and natural beauty makes the Hearst State Park Fishing Pier an invaluable asset to the California coast and a must-visit destination for anyone seeking a blend of adventure and serenity​


750 Hearst Castle Rd, San Simeon, CA 93452, USA


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The San Simeon Pier is currently closed due to structural damage. According to California State Parks officials, it may take some time before it reopens. Located within Hearst San Simeon State Park, a portion of the end of the pier was already closed due to damage sustained by storms in 2021

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Lingcod, Surfperch, Sablefish, Red Snapper, California Halibut, Flatfish, Starry Flounder, Speckled Sanddabs, Cabezon, Salmon , Steelhead Trout

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750 Hearst Castle Rd, San Simeon, CA 93452, USA

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