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Wahoo go on the Bite, Tuna Action Slow ~ March 18, 2017


Anglers –
March 18, 2017

A steady flow of spring break vacationers continue to arrive in Los Cabos, also this is the big week for the annual San Jose del Cabo traditional as well, so the town is very busy. The weather is progressively warming up, already feeling like late spring, winds were light in recent days, skies were clear and high temperatures were in the mid-80s, ideal climate now. Still lots of whales being sighted, we expect with this warming trend, that these mammals will start heading north soon.

Schools of sardinas are being found near Palmilla, on most days sufficient supplies were being netted, other bait options included ballyhoo and strips of squid. Most of the local action has now been found from off of Palmilla, to Punta Gorda, La Fortuna and to the Iman Bank. Not much at all being found further offshore for the charters that did scout that out, lack of billfish action at this time, most charters are fishing closer to shore and over the normal rocky structure areas until reports offshore improve

Yellowfin tuna action was very spotty, the tuna were seen at times on the surface, but were very finicky in striking baits, not hitting on lures either. Best chances were found while drift fishing or slow trolling with live sardinas over the grounds of La Fortuna and the Iman Bank, we were only seeing a handful of yellowfin landed each day, anglers were fortunate to land one of them, of the fish we saw, they averaged 20 to 30 lb, though we did see one 60 lb. fish brought in mid-week. There were more black skipjack than anything else.

Off the bottom, on these same grounds, we saw a mix of species such as yellow snapper, island jack, amherjack, cabrilla, red snapper, pargo and triggerfish. Not a lot of larger fish, mostly in the 4 to 10 lb. range, no big quantities either, but all very good eating. Strong currents have been running, this never helps anything, especially when fishing the bottom. Inshore the main action was for sierra while using sardinas, we saw a few nicer sized fish up to eight pounds accounted for.

We have not seen any dorado recently, though we did have big surprise with a wahoo bite developing off of Punta Gorda, this is something we normally would see in December. Even though the water temperature is in the lower 70s, there were sizable schools of wahoo holding in this area, which is less than a mile from shore. Sizes ranging from 15 lb. to 60 lb. Fish were a bit finicky, coming up on baits, most often not striking, other times they would hit sardinas or rigged ballyhoo and many also hit on yo-yo jigs. A few of the local skippers tried other techniques normally used only while trying to snag baitfish such as mullet, not an approved method, but wahoo are very elusive and open game. Of course the word got out of this action by later in the week and then we saw free divers with spears working the same spot, this is always a quick way to spook the fish out of the area. With the ongoing warming trend anything can happen and this wahoo action in recent days has been a prime example of this, as March is not the normal season when we find these prized sought after gamefish.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 72 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 24 yellowfin tuna, 7 amberjack, 2 island jacks, 1 sheepshead, 33 wahoo, 25 yellow snapper, 14 flag cabrilla, 19 leopard grouper, 62 huachinango, 75 sierra, 60 black skipjack and 110 triggerfish.

Good fishing, Eric

Tuna Slow, Mix of Structure Species Biting ~ March 11, 2017


Anglers –
March 11, 2017

We noticed more spring break vacationers now starting to arrive in town. Also San Jose del Cabo is busy preparing for the large annual traditional fiesta which will be held in the next week as well. Will be eventful times, crowds of people and lots of shut down streets to deal with as well. We felt a heat wave build mid-week, feels like spring already, clear sunny skies with high temperatures in the mid 80’s. Ocean water temperature was averaging from 70 to 73 degrees. In most areas clean blue water was being found within several miles of shore. North winds early in the week, then the later part wind moderate, strong currents did not help anglers though..

The action that was going on for yellowfin tuna off the Cabo San Lucas arches faded out over last weekend and we did not see any rebound this week. A handful of tuna were landed off of the La Fortuna and Iman Banks, most of these in the 30 lb. class, though numbers were very limited, more skipjack than anything else. Supplies of schooling sardinas were still being found off the rocky beach stretches from Regina to Cabo Real. Sardinetas are on the bait grounds off of the San Jose del Cabo Hotel Zone, though not many mackerel at all being reported, some people are using strips of squid as another bait option as well.

Not much billfish action being reported in any direction, on the Pacific or in the direction of the Sea of Cortez. Who knows what is going on with the striped marlin, should be the time we see more numbers of these fish showing up, definitely behind schedule.

Nothing has really developed with the yellowtail either, a few fish here and there, but no numbers at all. A handful of yellowtail up to 25 lb. were reported off of the Palmilla Point, hitting on yo-yo jigs and larger baits, but only one or two per day for the whole fleet and then the next day none. No consistent bite on these prized jacks, though we are still optimistic that something might happen soon.

Charters are not finding much at all further offshore or inshore for that matter, besides some sporadic action on sierra. Most charters are starting to work the various rock piles within a few miles of shore for a mix of snapper, pargo, amberjack, cabrilla, triggerfish and others. Spotty action for the most part, sometimes up to a dozen fish, other times only several. All good eating though, except for the black skipjack, which at times were very plentiful on same grounds where anglers were trying to get the yellowfin tuna to bite. Just not the time we are catching many really trophy sized fish, though with the weather now warming up with each passing day, things can change fast, also coming off a bright full moon, so as night time skies darken we hope to see the daytime action improve.

Still lots of whale activity being seen, though usually by the end of this month these mammals will start back on their northern migration. Plenty of sea lions in the area as well, always following the fishermen around trying to get an easy meal.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 61 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 14 yellowfin tuna, 6 yellowtail, 8 amberjack, 36 yellow snapper, 15 flag cabrilla, 15 leopard grouper, 8 mojarra, 44 huachinango, 62 sierra, 150 black skipjack and 130 triggerfish.

Good fishing, Eric

Yellowfin Tuna Action off Cabo San Lucas Arches ~ March 4, 2017


Anglers –
March 4, 2017

Similar pattern continues, many tourists arriving from northern territories to enjoy the ideal Southern Baja winter time climate. Not a large percentage of these visitors are serious hard core anglers, though many are deciding to give sportfishing a try as one of their many activity options to choose from. Scores of whales, as well as manta rays, sea lions and sea turtles are an added attraction for sightseeing. As we now transition towards the late winter season, low temperatures early in the morning are much milder, clear sunny skies have prevailed and daytime highs are near 80 degrees and this next week is forecast to be even warmer. Ideal time now to visit this resort area, surely the first waves of spring breakers will be arriving soon.

Ocean swells are moderate, water temperature is now on a slight warming trend, now averaging in the 71 to 73 degree range. Winds were predominately from the north, coming in cycles of two or three days, then diminishing for a period before returning, but for the most part the conditions were favorable for anglers to target what available options there have been. The red snapper bite had slowed over last weekend on the Outer Gordo Banks, but picked back up to start this week, the rare run of larger sized crabs were again present and were being netted and used for baits to drop down for the huachinango action, limits of these true Pacific red snapper were the rule, early in the day these fish were also readily striking on yo-yo style jigs, one California sheepshead weighing close to 30 lb. was also accounted for. This action for the snapper faded out again later in the week, north winds contributed to this and the crabs became very scarce as well, hard to say how this action will pan out in the coming weeks. Not much else going on for a variety of bottom species, a mix of yellow snapper, a few amberjack, cabrilla and the ever present triggerfish off rock piles closer to shore. No yellowtail action be reported this past week.

Sardinas have continued to found schooling close to shoe along stretches from the Regina Resort to Chileno and this was the bait of choice, with squid strips as a backup. The yellowfin tuna action has starting back up off of the Cabo San Lucas Arches, picked up strong mid-week for fish ranging 20 to 40 lb., quality sized yellowfin within a stones through of the shoreline. Wind was not a factor on these grounds, very calm, though once the word got out on this bite developing again the crowds swarmed, of course the sea lions and sea gulls were all in on this action as well. Anglers were doing best while slow trolling the live sardinas, but had to deal with the birds and sea lions taking their baits and then once actually hooking a tuna had to be fortunate to escape from having a sea lion grab the battling fish. Overall charters were accounted for an average of three to six tuna per morning trip, with many black skipjack in the mix.

With very limited billfish action being found throughout the area and no dorado or wahoo to speak of, this bite for the yellowfin was definitely the best option presently. During this transition period a lot can happen from week to week, still hoping to see some yellowtail of decent size show up, have not seen any numbers of them now for several years, with water temperatures starting to rise hard to say what will develop.

Limited action close to shore now for mainly sierra, along the beach stretches from Palmilla towards Cabo San Lucas, no word of roosterfish recently, though warming water should start to bring in more roosters.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 72 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 1 sheepshead, 1 wahoo,170 yellowfin tuna, 8 bonito, 11 yellow snapper, 8 leopard grouper, 124 huachinango, 15 sierra, 4 amberjack and 80 triggerfish.

Good fishing, Eric