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Manhattan Beach Pier, nestled on the Pacific Ocean’s coast in Manhattan Beach, California, stands as a historical and recreational beacon since its establishment on July 5, 1920. Originally stretching 928 feet long, the pier has witnessed significant changes and events that have shaped its current form and function.Historical Development and ChallengesThe pier’s history is marked by both enhancements and natural challenges. In 1928, an interesting proposition by Captain Larsen of Redondo Beach sought to extend the pier by 200 feet, offering to finance the expansion in exchange for rights to operate a shoreboat service to his barge, Georgina. This extension was intended to enhance the pier’s utility and accessibility.However, the pier encountered severe natural adversity in the 1940s. A significant winter storm in 1940 damaged the pier, tearing away a 90-foot section that was never repaired. Following closely in 1941, another devastating event led to the washing away of the remaining extension. These events significantly impacted the structure’s integrity and length.Restoration and Modern FeaturesDespite its tumultuous history, the Manhattan Beach Pier has been preserved and maintained, retaining its charm and utility. The pier, as it stands today, is 928 feet long and features wide sandy beaches that make it a popular spot for both locals and tourists. Its mussel-covered pilings and an artificial reef made of 2,000 tons of quarry rock at the pier’s end enhance the marine ecosystem, providing a habitat for various marine life and improving fishing opportunities.The structure of the pier, while maintaining the aesthetic of an old-fashioned pier, incorporates modern safety features that ensure it remains a secure and enjoyable destination. The combination of historical charm and contemporary safety standards makes the Manhattan Beach Pier a unique and cherished landmark.Common Fish Species and Fishing TipsSurfperch: These are often found close to shore around the pilings. Anglers typically use small hooks baited with worms or soft-shelled crustaceans. Light tackle is preferred for the best sensitivity to subtle bites.Mackerel: These fast-swimming fish are attracted to shiny lures and jigs. Fishing with a sabiki rig can be particularly effective during early mornings or late evenings when mackerel are most active.Halibut: Targeting halibut involves using live bait such as sardines or anchovies, positioned near the sandy bottom. Patience and a strong setup are necessary as halibut can grow quite large and are known for their strength.Leopard Shark: For those aiming to catch leopard sharks, using heavier tackle with squid or mackerel as bait is advisable. These sharks are typically bottom dwellers, so casting your line near the ocean floor is essential.Calico Bass: This species responds well to artificial lures and live bait such as crabs or small fish. Fishing around kelp beds or structured environments provides the best chances, as calico bass use these areas for cover.White Sea Bass: These elusive fish can be caught with live squid or heavy lures. Fishing during dawn or dusk when sea bass are more likely to feed increases success rates.Bonito: Often caught using lures that mimic small fish, bonito can be targeted with fast-retrieval methods. Trolling small, shiny lures can also be effective, especially when these fish are schooling near the surface.Additional Fishing ConsiderationsWhen fishing off Manhattan Beach Pier, it’s important to consider the tides, as they significantly affect fish behavior and accessibility. High tides can bring larger species closer to the pier, while low tides may reveal different species that feed in the shallows. Always ensure you are compliant with local regulations regarding catch limits and size restrictions to help maintain the health of the marine ecosystem.Recreational and Ecological SignificanceManhattan Beach Pier continues to be one of the most popular spots in the city, attracting visitors for fishing, sightseeing, and photography. The artificial reef, in particular, not only aids in marine life conservation but also attracts anglers and marine enthusiasts to the pier, contributing to the area’s biodiversity and the community’s recreational activities.ConclusionDespite the challenges it has faced and the repairs it has undergone, Manhattan Beach Pier remains a testament to the resilience and enduring appeal of historical structures. It offers visitors a picturesque glimpse into California’s coastal life, paired with the opportunity to engage in various recreational activities. The pier’s enduring popularity underscores its significance as a cultural and natural asset to Manhattan Beach and its community.


2 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, USA


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Halibut, Pacific Jack mackerel, Yellowfin Croaker, Walleye surfperch, Shiner perch, Queenfish, California corbina, Barred surfperch, White sea bass and Kelp bass.

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2 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, USA

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