How to Catch a Rockfish From Shore With a Lure

by Brenda Priddy
Rockfish, including black bass, swim near rocky and sandy shores.

Rockfish, including black bass, swim near rocky and sandy shores.

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Fishing for rockfish from the shore is the tried and true method for catching rockfish. You are likely to catch the pelagic rockfish, which prefer more shallow waters. You can catch lingcod, black bass, dusky bass, and yellowtails directly from the shore. Using the appropriate lures will tempt the fish to bite.

Items you will need

  • Chrome bar, crippled herring iron or swim bait lures
  • Lightweight spinning rig with 7-foot pole
  • 12- to 20-pound-test fishing line
Step 1

Find rockfish near the shore in winter. This is when the fish come near the shore to breed.

Step 2

Look for an area where rocky reefs or shorelines meet a sandy coast. Areas with a lot of natural kelp islands are best. Choose a fishing time at end of a moderate tide in slow water.

Step 3

Attach an appropriate lure to your fishing line. Chrome bar, swim baits and crippled herring iron lures are all proven to catch medium to large rockfish. Secure the lure to the line just above the hook, or use a lure that has hooks included. Tightly secure the lure to the line, as the rockfish try to dart in fast and eat the lure, which will loosen unsecured lures.

Step 4

Cast the line out as far as you can. Wait a few minutes, then reel back in. If you aren't getting bites, move from place to place on the shore to find the best location. Areas where shallow water suddenly runs into deep water, such as near an ocean shelf, is ideal for catching rockfish.

Step 5

Pull up on the line quickly to hook the fish once you feel a nibble. This will anchor the fish on the line so it cannot dart away. Be prepared for some fighting and hold on tightly to the line.

Photo Credits

  • Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images