By the time “Little Larry” was 11 years old, he was out fishing with his father, Captain Larry Fortado, Sr. That was the early 1970s, and he’s still at it.
Captain Larry Fortado, Jr. has spent almost four decades on the water, trawling for halibut, rockfish, and sole, fishing for herring with trammel nets, trolling for salmon and albacore, and trapping Dungeness crab. He also helped his uncle, Jim Fortado, fishing for sardines in Monterey Bay, and longlined for Ahi in Hawaii.
In 2007, the F/V Lyndie J was retired through The Nature Conservancy’s Ocean Habitat Protection Program, the Fortado family’s way of helping preserve the resources which provided for them for so many years.
Captain Fortado has two children, but neither has shown any interest in fishing, and so it appears that he will be the last commercial fisherman in the family.
Today Captain Fortado trawls with the 60-foot steel F/V Phyllis J, targeting rockfish, sole and halibut. Look for the Phyllis J at the head of “E” Dock, on your left as you walk out Johnson Pier at Pillar Point Harbor on Half Moon Bay. Look for Captain Fortado’s fresh-caught Petrale, California halibut and other delicacies at Three Captains’ Seafood, at the end of the Pier.