PLEASE BE ADVISED:
THE RED ABALONE RECREATIONAL FISHERY IS CLOSED.
Your Source for Diving and Fishing in Sea Ranch/Mendonoma Area
Diving and fishing in Sea Ranch is the reason we bought Abalone Bay. Are you planning a diving and fishing vacation?
Well then, you’ve come to the right spot! Abalone Bay is your perfect location.
Of course you’ll want to save this page because it’s chock full of information for the Sea Ranch diving and fishing enthusiast.
Divers and Fishermen are welcome to stay at Abalone Bay
Diving and fishing in Sea Ranch! What could be better?
You wake up early in the morning, look out the window to discover the water is flat, the tide low, while the fish and abalone just wait patiently for you to finish your first cup of coffee before you come out and play.
If this sounds like your kind of morning, or you know of someone who fits this bill, then by all means…
PLEASE BE ADVISED:
THE RED ABALONE RECREATIONAL FISHERY IS CLOSED.
THERE IS NO PERMITTED TAKING OF ANY ABALONE FROM THE CALIFORNIA COAST.
BUT THERE IS PLENTY TO DO BESIDES ABALONE…SO PLEASE READ ON.
Before you go diving and fishing in Sea Ranch…
- Be absolutely certain you have your California sports and fishing tags on your person and that you follow all current regulations.
- EQUALLY IMPORTANT – KNOW where the marine sanctuaries are located. Use our trail maps to point them out.
- DO NOT dive, fish, or otherwise disturb the wildlife in any marine reserve or habitat sanctuary.
- Only the person(s) on Abalone Bay’s booking contract and no more than four (4) other guests may dive.
- You may access the ocean bluff trail by crossing through our property only. Please stay on our path to the bluff trail. Do Not cut across our neighbor’s property.
- Use the hoses to rinse off your dive gear and yourself. DO NOT USE THE HOT TUB TO RINSE EQUIPMENT OR YOURSELF- it was not meant for that! But by all means, enjoy it afterward.
Diving and Fishing Amenities at Abalone Bay
As abalone divers and fishers of the sea ourselves, Abalone Bay was designed to be perfect for those who enjoy the sport. You’ll love that we are just a short walk to Smugglers Cove (easy staircase access) or Pebble Beach. Not only is a wetsuit drying rack available, but we also have a fish cleaning station with added pegs for our diving and fishing enthusiasts!
There’ll be no need to worry about the messes afterward because in the garage you will find extra towels to help with the clean-up. We just ask that you please wash them prior to departure to avoid added housekeeping charges.
When diving and fishing in Sea Ranch there is one very important rule to take note of. All equipment MUST be stored inside our courtyard for safety and compliance of Sea Ranch HOA rules. Do not hang it across the fence or outside of the courtyard.
NOTE- 2018 RED ABALONE SEASON IS CLOSED. NO ABALONE MAY BE TAKEN FROM CALIFORNIA COASTS
DIVING AND FISHING RESOURCES
Sea Ranch Tides
How great is this chart? When you click on the link below you’ll be taken to a site that shows you current water conditions just outside of Abalone Bay!
Here is another option for Tides Checking courtesy of TidesChart.com
Links to information on diving and fishing the Mendonoma coast
Before you go diving or fishing make sure you know current regulations for the area in which you will be fishing or diving! You can be certain that there will be changes each year that will affect where and how you dive or fish, as well as how many you may pull out of the water – no matter the species.
Hot Spots for Fishing
Wanting more hot fishing spots? Then click the portion of the California coast where you plan to fish, and you will access a printer-friendly summary of current Sport Fishing Regulations for that area
- Oregon Border to the 40°10′ Line
- The 40°10′ Line to Point Arena
- Point Arena to Pigeon Point
- Pigeon Point to Point Conception
- San Francisco Bay District
- Point Conception to the Mexico Border
Pier Fishing at Point Arena Cove
The pier sits in the Point Arena Cove. Though small (only 330-feet long), Point Arena’s Pier in the Point Arena Cove is one of the best fishing piers in the state. Anglers looking to hook rocky-area species like striped seaperch, kelp greenling, rock greenling and cabezon are likely to bring home generally good quality fish. In fact, many are prize pier specimens. It is also the best pier to catch lingcod and a fair pier to catch salmon.
About Point Arena Pier
Point Arena itself juts out to the west (and is, in fact, the closest point in the continental United States to Hawaii). Offshore of the concrete pier sits the world’s deepest waters in the Mendocino Trench, and the underwater Arena Canyon and Navarro Canyon begin directly out from the Point.
The pier has a boat launch and a hoist, open 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day, depending on the weather. Also on the pier are fish-cleaning tables, outdoor showers, and restrooms.
A wide variety of rock-area species are hauled out of the pier. They include:
- kelp and rock greenling,
- white and (a few) calico percalico perch,
- walleye and silver surfperch,
- grass, black and blue rockfish,
- small bocaccio,
- Pacific tomcod,
- starry flounder
- the occasional salmon.
Unusual species include large buffalo sculpin and wolf eels.
The rocky bottom cove itself is 20-100 feet deep, sits southeast of the point and is protected somewhat from northwest winds and storms. A small stream feeds into the ocean at the left of the pier, and there are reefs to both the south and north of the pier.
Eat, Drink, Swap Fishing Tales
For the non-fishing members of your party, they’ll enjoy hanging out Point Arena Chowder House or any of the other eateries next to the pier. The family-friendly pier building complex offers a great place to warm up on a cold fog fishing plus great views of the pier and cove’s beaches. Kids can find shells along the cove’s beaches and even watch surfers catch waves into the sheltered fishing pier and boat landing, It is THE place to go for Fourth of July festivities.
The map below shows you the way from Abalone Bay Vacation Rental to Point Arena Pier.
More Mendonoma/Northern California Marine Fishing Spots
Below is a map created by ImHooked.com that shows in great detail fishing hot spots and notes about access and resources in the area. Click on the icon next to the map’s title bar for the map’s key. For more detail about each marker click on the specific pin of interest.
River Fishing Nearby
The Gualala River has a good steelhead trout run. Steelhead is present from late December – April. Steelhead fishing on the Gualala River is primarily a catch and release fishery. Only the rare stray hatchery-reared and marked fish can be kept. Access to the area near the mouth is available off Hwy 1 just north of the river, through Gualala Point Regional Park on the south side of the river, off Old Stage Road immediately south of the town of Gualala on the river’s north side, and at Valley Crossing on Annapolis Road about a 1 east of Hwy 1.
Fishing on the Gualala River is restricted to adequate flows between October 1 through April 30 of each year. Anglers should check the Department’s Low-Flow Hotline at 707-944-5533 before going fishing on the Gualala River.
Maps to the Area
Below are more “ImHooked.com” fishing maps of nearby rivers in Mendonoma. The first is of Gualala River which runs through Sea Ranch. The second map is of Garcia River that runs past Point Arena.
For the key to each map click on the icon next to the map’s title bar. For more detail about each marker click on the specific pin of interest.
Gualala River Fishing Holes and Access:
The Gualala River has a good steelhead trout run. Steelhead is present from late December – April. Steelhead fishing on the Gualala River is primarily a catch and release fishery. The Gualala River has a long history (at least 50 years) of attracting fly fishermen from near and far. Whether you fly fish or use a spinning rod, fishing for Steelhead on the Gualala River is truly a sport.
Only the rare stray hatchery-reared and marked fish can be kept. Access to the area near the mouth is available off Hwy 1 just north of the river, through Gualala Point Regional Park on the south side of the river, off Old Stage Road immediately south of the town of Gualala on the river’s north side, and at Valley Crossing on Annapolis Road about a 1 east of Hwy 1. Fishing on the Gualala River is restricted to adequate flows between October 1 through April 30 of each year. Anglers should check the Department’s Low-Flow Hotline at 707-944-5533 before going fishing on the Gualala River.
Steelhead, a sea-run Rainbow Trout, live and grow for approximately a year in the brackish water of the lagoon before swimming to the ocean. They return to their home river as adult fish after two-three years where they spawn if river conditions are favorable.
Garcia Fishing Holes and Access
Species found in the Gualala River and Garcia Rivers include Steelhead. To learn more about this species we recommend reading Secrets of Steelhead Biology.
Other Recommended Fishing Websites
For further information and current California fishing season reports we recommend the following websites:
- USAFishing.com: includes northern California fishing tips and information
- Nor Cal Fishing News: includes fishing reports of the Bay Area and North Coast
Tips for Diving Sea Ranch And Mendonoma Area
But that doesn’t mean spearfishing is out of the question!
Abalone Harvesting has been suspended through 2021. Should you harvest any abalone in California you will be charged with poaching.
To show you how successful divers use to do it you’ll want to read our Sea Ranch Abalone Bay Blog post: Trophy Abalone Diving at Sea Ranch and Mendonoma Area
Another first-person account is In California, Diving for an Elusive Delicacy by Bonnie Tsui. As above, this first-person account published in October 2013 in the New York Times also describes diving for abalone in Northern California.
Resources for Equipment
A favorite resource of ours is SEALS Watersports. They are a good source for rental and purchase of dive and other water sports equipment. Further, they offer classes too. Be sure to stop there on your way up to Sea Ranch. Their address is: 2112 Armory Dr. Santa Rosa, California 95401
Dive Clubs and Dive Buddies
Are you in need of a dive buddy or looking for a fun group to dive with? Then try NorCal Skin Divers Club. Northern California Skin Divers Club is commonly referred to as NORCAL. They are one of the oldest dive clubs in California.
And of course, you’ll want to bookmark this site: SCUBA Shore Diving Sites- Northern California. Once there, just click on the map to learn more about dive sites in northern California
Northern California Rainbow Divers (NCRD) is a no-take, non-profit SCUBA diving club for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered divers and their friends.
Without a doubt, you’ll want to check out California Diver Magazine. This is both a print as well as the online magazine that provides digital content through their website for free to thousands of divers worldwide.
For a large listing of resources check out Northern California Dive Shops and other Professional Services
Tide Table Information
Click on the areas below to learn of current marine reports:
- The Sea Ranch, CA Extended Tide Forecast
- Sea Ranch, CA Tide Chart – Swellinfo.com
- 2017 Tide Table for Point Arena, California for fishing