Berkeley Bait and Tackle Shop
2221 San Pablo Ave.
A mapfrom YAHOO!
Berkeley Marina Sportfishing Center
225 University Ave.
A map from YAHOO!
Pier Fishing in California
has a monthly report.
The Berkeley Pier has been in operation since 1959, and is
over 3000 feet in length. Facilities include restrooms, wind breaks, and cleaning
stations. The pier is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
First, I must admit that I've never actually fished from the
Berkeley Pier. So why did I include it as one of my Spots? Mainly because it happens to be one of the most popular places
for the shoreline angler to fish. Not only is it close to a large city-Oakland. It also sits in a direct line from the entrance to the bay.
As a result, it gets a good number of fish passing by during their annual migrations.
My best recommendation is to read Ken Jones' book "Pier Fishing in
California". It's very informative, and well worth the small investment. To top it off, if you order the book
through his website, you can get it signed by the master himself!
Generally, Ken suggests fishing for perch and starry flounder from
January to March. Use a size 4 hook on a high-low rig for the perch, and a
sliding sinker rig baited with shrimp for the flounder. During the summer and fall, the
emphasis switches to jacksmelt, california halibut and striped bass. Fishing for the jacksmelt
is a fairly simple operation. Just tie several size 8 bait hooks to your line between a
small sinker, and a bobber. Bait each hook with a small piece of pileworm (watch out, they
bite!). Since jacksmelt are usually on the small side (12 inches or less), a light
trout rod is all that is needed. Catching a striper or halibut is a much more difficult
proposition. According to Ken Jones, the end of the pier is best for the halibut, while
anywhere along the pier is okay for the stripers. Use a sliding sinker leader with a live
shiner perch, or a better yet, a freshly caught "smallish" jacksmelt.
Take the University Avenue exit off I80, and head west. Parking is free.