Today, I had some business that took me down to the Naval Seabee Base in Port Hueneme, CA so while I was in the town, I visited the fishing pier at Port Hueneme Beach thinking that I may try fishing there again someday.
To say that it is quirky is an understatement.
I have not fished there in probably 25 years so I forgot all of its eccentricities. The biggest of these is that easily half the pier is over the beach and, no, you cannot fish for Sand Sharks there. The water line doesn’t start until after the next biggest eccentricity, the zig zag that is maybe half way up the pier. The Ventura Pier and the Goleta Pier both bend a little, but neither zig zag. I can’t say that I have been on any other pier that does.
Along with these oddities is the parking: You have to pay for the privilege in advance. The cost is two dollars an hour and if you lose track of the time, your excursion could get pricey if you are hit with a fine. Since there is no gated entrance or exit, I have to assume that the police come around every so often to check your parking ticket that you must display on your dashboard. This seems like a waste of police manpower to me but then I don’t live in the town and I cannot say for sure who enforces the parking limit. Maybe no one does.
Once you get over the water, it gets very crowded. The amount of people fishing there today would rate as a slow day on either of the other piers I mentioned above but in Port Hueneme, it looked like they were having a convention. The pier is only about 15 feet wide which makes the fishing even more claustrophobic. I didn’t see any signs forbidding overhead casting but then I didn’t see anyone doing it either and I can see why not; if you tried it, most likely you’d hook an angler before a fish.
I talked to three old boys encamped out on the end of the pier who looked like they’d been living there for a while but, as fishermen usually are, they were nice and talked fishing to me. Their opinion was mixed regarding how good or bad the fishing is on the pier, but it seemed like it always that way among these friends. One man did point out a Mackerel laying on a very messy bait cutting board that was much larger than the ones that I get at my home pier but then again, that was only fish I saw among those many anglers.
There were also a lot of “fishermen” jigging for small fish. These are the guys that are too lazy to actually fish and I do not like being around people like that especially in close quarters.
Right now, I’ll say I won’t fish there again, but then I may change my mind and try it for an hour or two.
If nothing else, Port Hueneme Beach is a beautiful place.