August 27, 2011



August 27, 2011

The later part of August has brought scattered thunder showers on and off throughout the week, lots of tropical cloud cover, this was a relief from the persistent sunny hot days of summer. Some high wind gusts accompanied rain squalls, particularly on Wednesday, when anglers had to return early due to foul conditions. Just as quick as it had formed, the weather settled down and ocean conditions were once again comfortable. Water temperatures have averaged 84 to 86 throughout most of the region. While the East Coast of the United States is now bracing for impact of Hurricane Irene, a category two storm, here in Southern Baja there are no tropical storm system developed at this time. The next several weeks is the period where historically there is the highest percentage of a hurricane making landfall on the Peninsula. Last summer was considered to be mild, with temperatures below normal, that has not been the case this summer, hot and humid temperatures arrived early and never have let up, only in recent days have we felt any relief, with early morning having that first hint of Fall.


Fortunately for La Playita panga anglers the supplies of sardinas have remained plentiful in the vicinity of the rock jetties. This has been the principal bait source used for targeting yellowfin tuna and dorado on the fishing grounds, ranging from La Fortuna, Iman to San Luis Bank. Drift fishing over these high spots while using both live and dead sardinas produced action, ranging from scratchy to wide open at times. The yellowfin were of quality grade, averaging 30 to 50 pounds, with many larger fish mixed in, it is typically the time of year when we see cow sized fish taking up residence on these same fishing grounds.


Last year, at this same time frame, we were starting to catch some yellowfin tuna up to 100 pounds on the Gordo Banks, this season this same bite has yet to develop, even though some tuna have been seen on these grounds, heavy dive boat pressure has also been a factor. The billfish action has been scattered, maybe the blacks are just late to arrive this season? Warmer than average water temperature, reaching near 90 degrees in areas, seems to have put the gamefish down to deeper depths, seeking more favorable currents.


Breaking news on Saturday afternoon, anglers Brice Faulwetter, from San Diego, also a crew member of a sportfisher named “Santana” based out of Puerto Los Cabos Marina was fishing with local pangeros Nico and Agustin on the Outer Gordo Banks when Brice hooked into a monster yellowfin tuna. Using sixty pound tackle and an 80 pound leader Brice single handedly battled and brought the fish to gaff in 3 hours and 40 minutes. The super cow weighed in at 330 pounds.


Dorado action was found spread out throughout the area, no spot where there was an abundance of these gamefish encountered, when smaller sized schools were encountered, these fish would strike on lures as well as bait. Dorado activity in the Los Cabos area has never really got on track this summer, we are optimistic that these fish will make a big presence during the fall season.


Dogtooth snapper were king of the rocky high spots now, found on same fishing grounds where tuna and dorado are schooling, these largest of all snapper, were striking on whole and cuts baits that anglers fly line down into the depths of 50 to 100 feet, hold on when they hit, chances are they will win more battles than the angler will. Of the dogtooth that were subdued, they weighed in the 25 to 50 pound class.


The combined panga fleets launching from La Playita/Puerto Los Cabos sent out approximately 72 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 2 striped marlin, 3 sailfish, 86 dorado, 145 yellowfin tuna, 17 cabrilla, 5 amberjack, 26 dogtooth snapper, and 12 bonito.

Good Fishing, Eric

August 20, 2011


August 20, 2011

Tropical conditions continue to attract moderate crowds to Southern Baja. Hurricane Greg developed off of the Southern mainland Mexican coast and passed some three hundred miles to the southwest of Cabo San Lucas on Thursday afternoon, increased humidity and higher surf conditions were the only impact felt by this latest storm system, no additional rainfall, as the landscape now has had a chance to dry out from last week’s thundershowers. Ocean currents are swift and water temperatures are averaging in the mid 80s, clarity has fluctuated some due to swift currents.

Supplies of sardinas were adequate this past week and were definitely the bait of choice for anglers targeting the yellowfin tuna bite that has been dominating the action from the Iman to San Luis Banks. Drift fishing while chumming with both live and dead bait was enticing the tuna into the feeding mood. The most active time of day for these fish varied from day to day, but there were large schools of tuna in this area and this is where the local fleet has been concentrated. This week there were tuna reportedly seen on the Gordo Banks, but no significant bite has developed on this area at this time. Heavy dive boat pressure has been a main factor, as the yellowfin become spookier with divers in the water. Anglers were landing an average of one or two and at times five to seven tuna per charter. The average size of these fish ranged from 30 to 60 pounds. In recent days there has been even larger yellowfin moving on to these same fishing grounds, one 200 pounder was landed on Wednesday by local famed sportfisher “Fisherman”, this tuna hit on a trolled live skipjack. Everyday the panga fleet is accounting for some tuna that are weighing up to 100 pounds or more. At times these fish proved leader shy and many larger fish were lost after being hooked up on lighter line. A few of these tuna were also hooked on yo-yo jigs. Plenty of skipjack in the same area, they have been used as chunk bait with some success as well.

Bottom action was not all that consistent, but mid week there were several days when fair numbers of dogtooth snapper, gulf and leopard grouper were accounted for. Some of these were hooked on yo-yo jigs, but more were taken on chunk bait from fresh skipjack. Drift fishing over the rocky structure with no weight, backing down into the current was the most productive technique, but anglers had to be on the ready, no slack here, turning these powerful fish way from the rocks proved to be major challenge.

Dorado numbers less than normal for summer time, but most charters were catching one or more in their combined catch, most of them were juvenile sized fish of 15 pounds or less. Most of the smaller schools of dorado were found near where the tuna were holding.

Not many reports of billfish on the local grounds lately, though panga charters have not really specifically targeted them recently, preferring to go after the more abundant yellowfin tuna.

Surf fishermen did report more snook activity off of the San Jose Estuary, everyday hook ups were reported by persons casting various lures or on mullet. Persistence was the key to landing one of these elusive prized eating fish, the month of August has always been one of the best times to find these inshore gamefish.

The combined panga fleets launching from La Playita/Puerto Los Cabos sent out approximately 60 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 2 sailfish, 86 dorado, 205 yellowfin tuna, 15 dogtooth snapper, 19 cabrilla, 3 grouper, 88 mixed pargo species, 6 amberjack and 14 bonito.

Good Fishing, Eric

August 13, 2011



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August 13, 2011

Considering the time of year there have been fair sized crowds visiting the Los Cabos area. Tropical conditions have continued, no named storms on the horizon now, but earlier in the week there were couple of days when local squalls developed and there were thundershowers that brought enough rainfall to soak the parched desert landscape. This moisture will certainly turn the landscape green in the coming weeks.

Strong currents have been running, swells were moderate and ocean water temperature are averaging 84 degrees of higher throughout the area. With the exception of when rain squalls developed, there has not been much wind at all, anglers found calm and very warm conditions on the fishing grounds.

There continued to be good supplies of sardinas schooling around the rock jetties off of Puerto Los Cabos Marina, they are starting to grow in size, but still are not as large as what fleets are finding towards the East Cape and La Paz. Other baits available are mullet, caballito and jurelito.

Billfish action has been scattered, there are reports of blue marlin striking on trolled lures in blue water ten miles or more offshore, but this is a deal where you have to put a patient effort in and cover a lot of water, sizes ranged in the 150 to 250 pound class. Some numbers of sailfish and striped marlin as well. The action for blacks and blues around the Gordo Banks has not been as red hot as it was last summer, at least up until this point it has not really developed yet, still early in the season though.

Local panga fleets have found the most consistent action on the areas from the Iman to San Luis Banks. Most common targeted species has been yellowfin tuna and dorado. The yellowfin have been striking mainly while drift fishing with both live and dead baits while chumming, lots of fish could be seen at times coming up on the surface, but these yellowfin were gorging on the abundant small sized squid on the fishing grounds and have proved to be a bit finicky striking other baits. The best producer has been sardinas used on lighter leaders. The tuna were averaging 25 to 50 pounds, with one 135 pound specimen accounted for by a commercial pangeros. There was heavy pressure on this bite since it was the main option happening at this time, making the fish somewhat spooky, most charter boats averaged anywhere from one or two, up to four,five or six of the tuna per day.

Dorado were found spread out, most of the time in smaller schools, mixed sizes, they were encountered on the same grounds as were the tuna, but with all of the skipjack now, it was hard for them to compete. The numbers were up and down from day to day, trolling larger live baits seemed to account for more dorado hook ups.

Dogtooth snapper were now present on all of the high spots, everyday there are a handful of hook ups on various whole and cut baits, though these fish are extremely powerful and hard to turn before cutting even the heaviest of lines off on the reefs. With the strong current flow, it has not been easy fishing the bottom.

Surf anglers did not have much to report, except for a group of local anglers who have been fish off the docks in the evening and catching quite a few quality sized triple tail, locally named roncador platiado, these prized eating fish are hitting on cut bait and are weighing from 15 to 30 pounds.

The local panga fleets launching out of La Playita/Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 58charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of, 2 striped marlin, 3 sailfish, 136 yellowfin tuna, 33 dorado, 18 dogtooth snapper, 13 cabrilla, 10 amberjack, 5 roosterfish, 9 barred pargo and 12 bonito.

Good fishing, Eric