Southern California Calico Report May 18 to 20

Figured that some of you guys up in Washington may enjoy looking at some of the fishing that we are doing down in Southern California....good times with the fly rod...any questions about this fishery just let me know....

Decided to update the post and give the back story...thanks for looking


Trip report from a trip to Catalina....May 18, 19 and 20

The Calico Boys – I spent the past three days on Catalina Island doing what I love most….fly fishing for calico bass with my good friends. We laughed all weekend, ate great food in the company of some very special people, and managed to stick some really beautiful calico bass in the process. Fly fishing is an awesome sport that I know I will do for the rest of my life. However that being said, the more time I spend on the water with my friends I have come to realize that the true fulfillment of fly fishing for me is to do it with the people who I enjoy being around the most. Losing a great fish to a crappy knot or from being wrapped in the kelp is still fun if you can laugh it off over a beer with your friends. As always, when you fish hard for three days you learn a lot, and here are few things we took away from our trip: (1) Dave Valadez’s Radioactive Thunderbird fly is an insanely deadly fly (2) YETI Coolers are even better than the hype (3) Seaguar Tatsu is so strong it should be illegal (4) Skinny Tod can drink more beer than you, especially if its Kona Longboard Lager (4) Don’t buy gas on an island if you don’t have to….$6.07 a gallon.

Three straight days of fishing would have been fun with just about anyone, but what made it, and always makes it incredibly great, is because its me, Keith, Bill, Dave and Tod all charging to the majestic island to fish together. Tight Loops & Tight Lines – Adam P.

Catalina_May18_01 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_02 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_09 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_07 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_08 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_11 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_16 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_12 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_14 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_10 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_18 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_06 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_17 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_05 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_04 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_03 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_19 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_15 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr

Catalina_May18_21 by TheCalicoCrew, on Flickr


Active Member
Nice TR. I use to live in So. Calif and fished the kelp for calicos often. A ton of fun to fish for and we always would keep a couple for the BBQ,
Calico fishing is one of the most intense fly fishing I have been involved in. Fishing the boiler rocks with big swells keeps you honest and looking over your shoulder often. But as you mentioned it is lots of fun. The take and the tug of war that results is awesome.

As for calico bass. They are a great tasting fish. I throw pretty much all of them back, but if I do keep one it is normally a small 12 incher. Interesting thing about the calico is that they have an extremely slow growth rate. A 16 inch fish is over 10 years old. About a 2.5 lb fish. This species can reach upto 10 lb fish. Now that is an old fish.