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Mission Bay is a large, relatively shallow, manmade bay built for the purpose of recreation as the centerpiece of Mission Bay Park, the largest of its kind in the United States at 4,235 acres. It is located just north of downtown San Diego next to Mission Beach. The bay features 27 miles of shoreline, almost all of which is accessible for fishermen. 

Shore fishing locations are abundant with parking lots on just about every point within the bay. The shoreline is mostly comprised of soft sand, and the bottom is relatively featureless. The max depth is about 20′ in areas of the Mission Bay Channel, Mariner’s Basin and Quivera Basin. But most areas of the bay are around 12′ feet deep at high tide. Patches of eelgrass and manmade structures like bridge pilings and boat docks stand out as primary fish habitat on the otherwise sandy and flat bottom.

Spotted bay bass are abundant, and while typically not caught in as many numbers as San Diego Bay, the bass here are typically a little larger. Because Mission Bay is considerably shallower than San Diego Bay, there are not as many barred sand bass or calico bass available.

In addition to the spotted bay bass, halibut and corvina are popularly targeted species of fish for anglers. Bat rays, leopard sharks, and other sand dwelling species are common as well.


Mission Bay Park is bordered by the San Diego River to the south, Pacific Beach to the north, Interstate 5 to the east, and Mission Beach to the west. The park is well mapped out with signs directing you to most areas of the bay