Few coastal angling destinations hold more mystery and awe than jetties. They are literally the gateway to the ocean and the home to some of the most-prized gamefish in the state.
The Iceberg Effect
Remember that for the most part, jetties are not a trail of rocks, but are actually more like an iceberg. The rocks that we see on the surface can taper out surprisingly far from the basic form above the surface. Additionally, storms and severe wave action can actually move rocks, and those odd edges and points are where the angling magic really happens. Work your baits all along the below-waterline taper when locating fish. They will likely be on the ragged edges of structure.
The uneven and slippery rocks of a jetty can be an unforgiving terrain for even the most-intrepid angler. When pursuing a winter bite, remember that the term “rock-hopping” speaks to the occasional need to actually do some rock hopping. A light backpack or well-positioned and balanced wading belt can provide all you need when working through the alpine-like perils of the winter rocks and still have you prepared for all of your angling needs.
Not unlike a traditional bay or flats fishing setting, look for fish signs when fishing any given spot on the jetties. All of the normal clues apply – baitfish, fish slicks, surface and diving birds, and color changes. Remember that the jetty provides a maze of intricate structure for predators and prey so use your eyes to give you an advantage in accurately tracking your target.