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PACIFICA BEACH FISHING PIER

Early Development

Pacifica Fishing Pier, located in Pacifica, California, is one of the most popular fishing spots on the West Coast. Constructed in 1973, the pier was initially designed as a wastewater discharge pipe extension. However, due to the significant interest in recreational fishing, it was repurposed into a public fishing pier, becoming a central attraction for local anglers and tourists.

Construction and Enhancements

The pier stretches approximately 1,140 feet into the Pacific Ocean, providing ample space for fishing activities. The initial construction utilized reinforced concrete to withstand the harsh ocean conditions, ensuring durability and longevity. Over the years, the pier has seen several renovations to maintain its structural integrity and improve the visitor experience.

Environmental and Structural Challenges

Pacifica Fishing Pier has faced numerous environmental challenges, including powerful ocean waves, storms, and natural wear and tear. The pier was temporarily closed in 2019 for extensive repairs, addressing damage caused by years of exposure to the elements. These repairs included reinforcing the structure, replacing damaged sections, and upgrading safety features to ensure the pier’s longevity and safety for visitors.

Recent Improvements

Recent improvements to Pacifica Fishing Pier have focused on enhancing accessibility and convenience for visitors. These enhancements include better lighting for night fishing, new benches, upgraded fish cleaning stations, and improved restroom facilities. Additionally, the surrounding area has been developed to include picnic spots and scenic viewpoints, making it a comprehensive recreational destination.

Pier Specifics and Amenities

  • Length: Approximately 1,140 feet into the Pacific Ocean.
  • Lighting: Enhanced lighting for night fishing.
  • Fish Cleaning Stations: Equipped with running water.
  • Benches: Numerous benches for relaxation.
  • Parking: Ample parking space available near the pier.
  • Restrooms: Upgraded facilities available for visitors.
  • Accessibility: Improved features for better accessibility.
  • Additional Amenities: Picnic areas, scenic viewpoints, and nearby cafes and shops.

Fish Species and Fishing Techniques

The waters around Pacifica Fishing Pier are rich with a variety of fish species. Here are some of the most common species and effective techniques for catching them from the pier:

1. Striped Bass

Techniques: Use live bait such as anchovies or sardines, or artificial lures like swimbaits and topwater plugs. Fish during tidal changes near the pier.

Best Months: May to November.

2. Salmon

Techniques: Use lures like spinners and spoons, or bait like anchovies and herring. Fish during the salmon run in deeper water off the end of the pier.

Best Months: July to October.

3. Halibut

Techniques: Use live bait such as anchovies or sardines, or artificial lures like swimbaits. Fish near sandy bottoms and around the pier pilings during tidal changes.

Best Months: April to September.

4. Dungeness Crab

Techniques: Use crab traps or snares with bait like chicken or fish heads. Drop traps near the end of the pier and wait for crabs to enter.

Best Months: November to June.

5. Perch

Techniques: Use small pieces of shrimp or squid on small hooks. Fish near the pilings and along the surf line.

Best Months: Year-round, with peaks in spring and summer.

6. Lingcod

Techniques: Use live bait such as sardines or mackerel, or artificial lures like jigs and swimbaits. Fish near rocky areas and drop-offs.

Best Months: May to October.

7. Rockfish

Techniques: Use bait like squid or anchovies, or artificial lures like jigs. Fish near rocky structures and kelp beds.

Best Months: May to October.

8. Smelt

Techniques: Use small hooks with pieces of shrimp or squid. Fish near the surface in schools.

Best Months: Year-round.

9. Sturgeon

Techniques: Use bait like shrimp, anchovies, or herring on the bottom. Fish during incoming tides and in deeper waters.

Best Months: January to March, November to December.

10. Bat Ray

Techniques: Use bait like squid or mackerel on the bottom. Fish near the end of the pier during tidal changes.

Best Months: Year-round.

Fishing Calendar

Month Striped Bass Salmon Halibut Dungeness Crab Perch Lingcod Rockfish Smelt Sturgeon Bat Ray
January Bad Bad Bad Great OK Bad Bad Bad OK Great OK
February Bad Bad Bad Great OK Bad Bad OK Great OK
March OK Bad Bad Great Great OK Bad OK Great OK
April Great OK Great Great Great Great OK Great OK Great
May Great Great Great OK Great Great Great Great Bad Great
June Great Great Great OK Great Great Great Great Bad Great
July Great Great Great OK Great Great Great Great Bad Great
August Great Great Great OK Great Great Great Great Bad Great
September Great Great Great OK Great Great Great Great Bad Great
October Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great OK Great
November Great Bad OK Great Great OK OK Great OK Great
December OK Bad Bad Great OK Bad Bad OK Great OK

Address

Pacific Municipal Pier, Pacifica, CA 94044, USA

Website

https://www.cityofpacifica.org/departments/public-works/field-services/pacifica-pier#:~:text=Although%20fishing%20can%20be%20good,at%20the%20Pacifica%20Municipal%20Pier.

Operating Hours

OPEN DAILY: 4:00 AM – 10:00 PM

Admission & Pricing

FREE ADMISSION

Rod Rentals

There is a fishing store with limited supplies at the end of the pier such as cut bait and snares.

Bait Option

Available at restaurant at the beginning of the pier

Amenities

  • Length: Approximately 1,140 feet into the Pacific Ocean.
  • Lighting: Enhanced lighting for night fishing.
  • Fish Cleaning Stations: Equipped with running water.
  • Benches: Numerous benches for relaxation.
  • Parking: Ample parking space available near the pier.
  • Restrooms: Upgraded facilities available for visitors.
  • Accessibility: Improved features for better accessibility.
  • Additional Amenities: Picnic areas, scenic viewpoints, and nearby cafes and shops.

Fish Caught

King Salmon, Perch, Kingfish, Starry Flounder, Pacific Tomcod, Lingcod, Stripped Bass, Rock Crabs, Jacksmelt, Stripers,

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Pacific Municipal Pier, Pacifica, CA 94044, USA

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