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Monterey Bay Fishing

Monterey Bay Fishing

Located in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of California, Monterey Bay is a diverse ecosystem. From the rocky coastline to the Monterey Canyon, one of the largest underwater canyons in the world, Monterey Bay is a unique fishing destination. The history of Monterey Bay, California dates back to the indigenous Ohlone people, who lived in the area for thousands of years before the arrival of Spanish explorers in the late 18th century. Spanish colonial rule was established in Monterey in 1770, and it became the capital of Alta California. In 1848, following the Mexican-American War, California became a part of the United States, and Monterey Bay became a hub for the booming maritime and fishing industries. During World War II, the area was a center for military activity and was later transformed into a popular tourist destination, known for its scenic beauty, rich history, and diverse wildlife. Today, Monterey Bay remains a popular destination for visitors and a center for environmental conservation efforts.

Monterey Bay fishing offers a plethora of popular species for all depths of fishing. Types of fish you could catch while inshore fishing include Albacore Tuna. Bluefin Tuna, Cabezon, Halibut, Lingcod, and Rockfish (Pacific snapper). King Salmon (Chinook Salmon) is a popular species that you have a chance catching nearshore. You can also catch Silver Salmon (Coho Salmon) in some of the same areas. Several record fish have been caught at Monterey Bay, including a 78-pound White Sea Bass and a 220-pound Bluefin Tuna.



Monterey Bay Fishing Forecast

Target Species of Fish

Based on historical data for fishing Monterey Bay, you should target one of the following species for this time of year:
  1. Shortbelly Rockfish

  2. Shortbelly Rockfish

    There is a 43.59% catch rate for Shortbelly Rockfish, based on 10785 Shortbelly Rockfish counted.

    Monterey Bay Shortbelly Rockfish Counts Chart
    Shortbelly

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY SHORTBELLY ROCKFISH COUNTS CHART


  3. Lingcod

  4. Lingcod

    There is a 8.09% catch rate for Lingcod, based on 2003 Lingcod counted.

    Monterey Bay Lingcod Counts Chart
    Lingcod

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY LINGCOD COUNTS CHART


  5. Cabezon

  6. Cabezon

    There is a 4.18% catch rate for Cabezon, based on 1034 Cabezon counted.

    Monterey Bay Cabezon Counts Chart
    Cabezon

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY CABEZON COUNTS CHART


  7. Rex Sole

  8. Rex Sole

    There is a 3.33% catch rate for Rex Sole, based on 824 Rex Sole counted.

    Monterey Bay Rex Sole Counts Chart
    Rex

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY REX SOLE COUNTS CHART


  9. Starry Flounder

  10. Starry Flounder

    There is a 3.09% catch rate for Starry Flounder, based on 765 Starry Flounder counted.

    Monterey Bay Starry Flounder Counts Chart
    Starry

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY STARRY FLOUNDER COUNTS CHART


  11. Chub Mackerel

  12. Chub Mackerel

    There is a 3.06% catch rate for Chub Mackerel, based on 758 Chub Mackerel counted.

    Monterey Bay Chub Mackerel Counts Chart
    Chub

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY CHUB MACKEREL COUNTS CHART


  13. Chinook Salmon

  14. Chinook Salmon

    There is a 3.04% catch rate for Chinook Salmon, based on 753 Chinook Salmon counted.

    Monterey Bay Chinook Salmon Counts Chart
    Chinook

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY CHINOOK SALMON COUNTS CHART


  15. Arrowtooth Flounder

  16. Arrowtooth Flounder

    There is a 3.04% catch rate for Arrowtooth Flounder, based on 752 Arrowtooth Flounder counted.

    Monterey Bay Arrowtooth Flounder Counts Chart
    Arrowtooth

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY ARROWTOOTH FLOUNDER COUNTS CHART


  17. Coho Salmon

  18. Coho Salmon

    There is a 3.04% catch rate for Coho Salmon, based on 752 Coho Salmon counted.

    Monterey Bay Coho Salmon Counts Chart
    Coho

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY COHO SALMON COUNTS CHART


  19. Sharpchin Rockfish

  20. Sharpchin Rockfish

    There is a 3.04% catch rate for Sharpchin Rockfish, based on 752 Sharpchin Rockfish counted.

    Monterey Bay Sharpchin Rockfish Counts Chart
    Sharpchin

    ENLARGE MONTEREY BAY SHARPCHIN ROCKFISH COUNTS CHART


Recommendations above based on 35 species of fish and 24744 fish counted for May around Monterey Bay.

To date, there are 69 species of fish and a total of 107768 fish counted for Monterey Bay and within a 30 mile (48 km) radius since 1/1/1860 (164 years).

Last Update: 5/24/2024 2:47:03 PM

*** PLEASE NOTE ***
Please check local, state/province, and federal laws before fishing for any species found on this site. All data is based on historical data found for this area, and in some cases as far back as the year 1600.

View full Monterey Bay Fishing Forecast to see all species.

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Top Monterey Bay Fishing Spots

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The Top 10 Fishing Spots for Monterey Bay are the following:

  1. Soquel Hole
    Soquel Hole 36.52.00 / 121.57.00 Popular King Salmon and Silver Salmon hole for trolling and drifting. 


  2. Mulligan Hill
    Mulligan Hill 36.44.98 / 121.52.


  3. Soldier’s Club
    Soldier’s Club 36.41.14 / 121.52.28


  4. 601 South Rock
    601 South Rock 36.55.00 / 122.01.00


  5. Adams Reef


  6. Three Trees


  7. Manresa State Beach


  8. Three Trees


  9. Moonglow Point


  10. Park Reef Kelp


View more Top Monterey Bay Fishing Spots


Latest Monterey Bay Fishing Reports

  • May 18 – Afternoon trip
    Water settled down from this morning’s trip and the fish were ready to bite! Loaded up the boat with good sized reds blues browns and olive rockcod. Real fun trip and a lot o


  • May 18 – Morning trip
    Headed out for a local rockcod trip and the water wasn’t very comfortable. Fish didn’t bite much but we came home with some rockcod. Great family and fun. The post May 18 – M


  • May 11
    Up the coast for Jurassic Park trip today. Fog was thick! Got up a ways and dropped in. Slow bite with the south swell but we managed to find rockcod and lings. The post May


  • May 10
    Halibut trip today. Water was calm and no breeze. Fun group. The post May 10 appeared first on Monterey Bay and Santa Cruz Fishing Charters.


  • May 6
    What a difference a day makes! We set out again for a local potluck trip and things went a lot better than yesterday. We managed to pick up some live bait then after motoring


  • May 5
    Our first trip out this season for local potluck. With the storm that just passed winds were big and seas were uncomfortable. Our group worked real hard to get the fish to bi


  • February 5
    We’re still waiting for the official word when fishing season will open. I expect May 1st we can fishing for everything except salmon. Salmon will probably remain closed for


  • 2023
    That’s a wrap folks! We had a wonderful year of fishing and meeting up with both old and new friends. Lot’s of fish caught and lot’s of fun. Tyler Greg Rodney and I appreciat


  • November 21
    Big water today and big fish too for grandpa Tom and eight year-old grandson Tom (aka Hook). Great time. Lots of fish for the holiday. The post November 21 appeared first on


  • October 11
    Out to the deep for lings and things today. Got our bait then tried for lingcod but they weren’t biting. Ran up the coast for rockcod and did okay. Water was a wee bit bUmPy


View Monterey Bay Fishing Reports

Top Monterey Bay Bait & Tackle Stores

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Top Monterey Bay Fishing Charters & Guides

  1. Monterey Bay Charters
    MEGA-BITE is the premier 6-pack charter boat located in the Santa Cruz Yacht Harbor and we fish the Monterey Bay. We provide all types of charters aboard our spacious 32x12 foot 630 horsepower Sport Sedan. We can take up to six people fishing for sa

  2. Capitola and Santa Cruz Boat Rentals
    Santa Cruz Boat Rentals and Capitola Boat and Bait have the only motorized ocean skiffs for rent on Monterey Bay, so if you want to get out there, you want to come here! Our shops are located on the Santa Cruz and Capitola wharves, making them the pe

  3. Fish Taxi Sportfishing Oceanside CA
    Fish Taxi 6-pack private deep sea fishing charter all-inclusive 1/2 day, full day and overnight excursions available. From sportfishing tournaments to kid-friendly outings, we've got you covered. Gear and refreshments provided.

View more Monterey Bay Charters & Guides

Top Monterey Bay Marinas

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