Warming Conditions, Variety of Options, Spring Break ~ March 29, 2014


March 29, 2014
Anglers –

Vacationing tourists continue to arrive in soaring numbers, as spring break season is now in full swing. Weather has been very pleasant, prevalent winds were gusting early in the week, with ocean conditions being quite comfortable late week. Ocean water temperatures were ranging in the upper 70s towards the Gordo Banks and further north, while currents were in the lower 70s on the Pacific grounds. Day time highs were in the low 80s, feeling a bit more like summer than spring. Whales are vanishing from the area rapidly, headed on their long migration towards the rich feeding grounds of the Bering Sea.

The striped marlin action off of the San Jose del Cabo area started back up with a flurry, feeding marlin were seen in concentrations, anywhere from 2 to 8 miles from shore, moving quickly at times, seen free jumping and tailing on the surface as well. Striking on lures as well as live caballito or rigged ballyhoo, many charters reported having multiple chances for stripers per outing. With inshore and bottom action being sporadic, much of the week anglers found that there was actually a better chance at finding marlin than any of the other smaller gamefish closer to shore.

There was a variety of other species now in local water, though it seemed that none of them were really abundant, or consistently biting on a day to day basis. Yellowtail were occasionally being hooked into on the various rocky high spots, some of these jacks were found close to shore on the ordinary roosterfish and sierra grounds. Yellows were holding on the Outer Gordo Bank, though only handful of people are landing them, all nicer sized 30 to 35 lb. fish, just no consistent action and many hammerhead sharks to sort through. Rounding out the fish counts were, cabrilla, pargo, amberjack, bonito, dorado, sierra and wahoo, all being reported daily in limited numbers.

Wahoo are being seen in schools off of Punta Gordo and to La Fortuna, though are finicky, striking baits, yo-yo’s and trolled jigs when they became aggressively in the mood for striking, strange do even have these fish hanging around at this time of year, this is a result of the warmer than usual water temperatures. Dorado are being encountered in smaller sized schools, the majority of this action closer to shore, rather than on the offshore grounds, sizes averaged 5 to 20 pounds.

Bottom action has never really turned into a steady productive option this season, the action for surface species proved more consistent than were the reef dwellers. We would normally expect to see a trend develop in the coming weeks, of less wind, warming days and more options for anglers off the structure and inshore stretches. Nice time of year coming, ideal weather, not too warm and not too cool.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 91 charters for this past week, with anglers accounting for a fish count of: 33 striped marlin, 17 wahoo, 3 mako shark, 4 yellowfin tuna, 12 yellowtail, 15 amberjack, 84 dorado, 15 jack crevalle, 28 sierra, 42 roosterfish, 95 bonito, 18 cabrilla and 14 hammerhead sharks (released).

Good fishing, Eric

Spring Starts with Slower Action as Weather Patterns Prove Unpredictable ~ March 22, 2014


March 22, 2014
Anglers –

The Spring season has now officially begun, weather conditions have been hard to beat, warm and sunny skies, with high temperatures near 80 degrees. Winds have been swirling now for the past week, first from the north and then out of the south, this has created some choppy ocean conditions at times. Ocean temperatures have averaged from 71 on the Pacific, up to 74 degrees off of San Jose del Cabo.

This is now peak time for spring break vacations, scores of families and hundreds are college students are arriving in the Los Cabos area, though this past week we did not see as many anglers, of course windy conditions certainly convinced some people to change plans. With the passing of the latest full moon we saw the offshore action for striped marlin slow way down, these fish were now more scattered and not being seen in any numbers.

The majority of the dorado being encountered recently were found closer to shore, this is where concentrations of half beaks (ballyhoo) were schooling. Trolling various baitfish was the most successful for these gamefish, though some anglers did report catching dorado on lures as well. Sizes were averaging 5 to 15 pounds, with a handful of larger specimens accounted for. Most charters were fortunate to average about one dorado per day.

No action on yellowfin tuna being reported, only a few fish reported, mixed in with bonito off the high spots from Iman to San Luis Banks, Yellowfin have been holding in this region through the winter, though with the lack of sardinas to entice them, we have not seen any consistent action on these tuna since the Fall. The only live baitfish that has been plentiful has been caballito, rigging fresh dead ballyhoo has been another option.

Off of the high spots, where anglers were jigging over the structure, bonito was the most common species being landed; these feisty fighters were running in the 4 to 8 pound class. Only an occasional amberjack or yellowtail is being hooked into, most of these striking on yo-yo style jigs and ranged from 20 to 35 pounds. There are big yellowtails now on the Outer Gordo Banks, lots of bonito on these same grounds, striking on the iron jigs, drifting live caballito down deep can be productive for the big yellows, though a problem has been there are many hammerhead sharks lurking down deep on these grounds, hard to stay away from them while trying for the jacks. These rock piles also produced some cabrilla and snapper, though that massive red snapper run during the red crab bloom of previous week has not redeveloped, need these winds to reside for that to happen. We are in transition time now, still unpredictable as to what can happen with the weather conditions from day to day.

With the water temperatures holding a bit warmer than normal, baitfish migrations are off and so are typically gamefish patterns. Wahoo have been found though the winter, they are still being hooked into practically daily, though a bit sporadic, most of this action was reported on the inshore grounds from Punta Gorda to La Fortuna, water depths from 100 to 150 ft., strong winds last week turned over this water some and anglers found varied success.

We are still seeing numerous whales, though surely these will be the final weeks of this activity, many of these mammals have already begun their northern migration.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 78 charters for this past week, with anglers accounting for a fish count of: 8 striped marlin, 5 wahoo, 2 yellowfin tuna, 9 yellowtail, 16 amberjack, 395 bonito, 6 jack crevalle, 7 sierra, 42 dorado, 24 roosterfish, 18 cabrilla and 12 hammerhead sharks (released).

Good fishing, Eric

Striped Marlin Breaks Wide Open near the Gordo Banks ~ March 15, 2014


March 15, 2014
Anglers –

Another wave of Spring Break vacationers are arriving in Los Cabos and everyone is enjoying perfect weather conditions, lows in the 60, highs in the low 80s, clear sunny skies, moderate swells and warming ocean temperatures, what else could a person ask for? Past weekend there was a heavy south blow, pushed in cooler waters from the Pacific, but these conditions quickly rebound as winds subsided and average ocean temperatures are now in the 70/72 degree range on the Pacific side of Cabo San Lucas and in the direction of San Jose del Cabo we are seeing warmer 74/76 degree currents.

This big southern blow last Sunday contributed to the large concentrations of striped marlin moving from the Pacific grounds to area just outside the Gordo Banks. Previously the billfish action had been very scattered in this area, but all of sudden the bite broke wide open, fleets from all local ports were congregating on these grounds. Striped marlin were found in big numbers, many charters having more than a half dozen strikes per trip, Multiple marlin per boat was common. The stripers were readily striking trolled lures, ballyhoo, others were seen tailing on the surface and would take live caballito, also anglers did well drift fishing deeper baits. Quite a few thrasher sharks in this area, many were hooked while drifting baits, most of these were lost, very powerful fish, they head straight down and use their extended long tail to their advantage.

Doardo numbers were limited, though some of these gamefish are being encountered each day, at times very close to shore, sizes range 5 to 20 lb. No particular hot spot to find these fish now. Wahoo were sighted free swimming on the popular local grounds, though only a handful were actually hooked into. One wahoo in the 80 lb. class was landed, hooked into on the same grounds as were the striped marlin. Yellowfin tuna were seen breezing at times near Iman to San Luis Banks, but only a few of these 15 to 25 pound tuna were hooked into, either on live caballito or on yo-yo jigs while jigging off of the rocky structure, where the main catch has been for Eastern Pacific Bonito.

The much talked about red snapper bite that occurred last red, as a result of the red crab bloom, this action dissipated quickly as the red crustaceans no longer were found drifting to the surface in masses, as during the previous week. So snapper catches were spotty, an occasional amberjack, cabrilla, grouper or yellowtail were accounted for off the various rocky high spots. The San Luis Banks, as well as times on the Gordo Banks, produced great action for the local good eating variety of bonito, ranging 4 to 10 pounds, these toothy speedsters are fun sport on light tackle.

Along the inshore beach stretches, sierra, jack crevalle were found in certain areas. Good numbers of roosterfish, up to about 12 pounds, were being found the first couple of miles towards the north of Puerto Los Cabos Marina jetty entrance. Sierra were more scattered, still no sardinas being found locally, caballito has been the steady bait source recently.

Getting to be late season now, though there are still lots of a whales being sighted in larger sized pods, these mammals are going to be starting their northerly migration soon. Sea lions are becoming more of a nuisance on the local snapper grounds, wanting to catch their share of the tasty red snapper, always easier grab hold of when the fish is trapped on a fishing line.

The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 104 charters for this past week, with anglers accounting for a fish count of: 2 thrasher shark, 82 striped marlin, 4 wahoo, 6 yellowfin tuna, 4 yellowtail, 26 amberjack, 480 bonito, 14 jack crevalle, 12 sierra, 26 dorado, 110 roosterfish, 14 cabrilla, 72 red snapper (huachinango) and misc. pargo..

Good fishing, Eric