January 29, 2017
Visitors to Southern Baja are enjoying warm sunshine, with high temperature of around 75 degrees. Much of this past week there were strong northern winds that made for some rougher days on the water for anglers, early morning there as the wind chill factor to deal with until the rising sun helped warm the day up. Fortunately there were still some yellowfin tuna fond close to shore off of Punta Gorda, this was the highlight of catches in recent days.
The schools of sardinas which had just recently appeared in local waters for the first time in over a year, are already starting to vanish, recently the commercial bait netters are working hard to find minimal quantities and anglers were waiting for an hour or more to sometimes not even get the sardinas. So this is a bit discouraging to see this resource collapsing so quickly, we will hope that more schools of these preferred baitfish will move into the region soon. Other bait options have included sardineta, mackerel, caballito and slabs of squid. Just not much action being found by trolling lures, so bait has been the better choice to find action.
Anglers were drift fishing for the yellowfin tuna, using various baits, but sardinas were the favorite if you were able to obtain them. The tuna were ranging in size from 15 to 40 lb., average catches being one or two or up to six or more, depending if you were at the right place at the right time. These yellowfin were hanging close to shore over rocky structure where anglers were also catching a mix of bottom species, though no significant number, except for possible triggerfish. A few nicer sized amberjack were accounted for, in the 50 to 60 lb. class, also a handful of red snapper and leopard grouper.
Ocean clarity actually improved in recent days, as greenish current were pushed aside by bluer water within a mile of shore. Water temperatures now averaged 70 to 71 degrees, which is back to around normal for this time of year. We are hoping to see more yellowtail start to move in, there were increased numbers of striped marlin being seen off of the normal fishing grounds out of San Jose del Cabo, though still only a handful were actually hooked into.
Sierra are dominating the inshore activity, moderate numbers of fish averaging 2 to 4 lb. A few roosterfish were also accounted for, up to 15 lb. Not the normal season that we find many roosterfish, normally the ones we do see are smaller juvenile sized fish. The north winds have limited where charters could reasonably have a chance to fish in comfort, need some calmer days in order to work the grounds of Iman to San Luis, this is where there can be more bottomfish opportunities during the winter season.
Whales continue to entertain viewers, as they are now in peak season. Also some sea lions hanging around the fishing grounds taking their share of the catch.
The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 62 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 7 striped marlin,120 yellowfin tuna, 7 dorado, 11 bonito, 21 yellow snapper, 18 leopard grouper, 34 huachinango,124 sierra, 5 roosterfish, 5 pompano, 12 mojara, 6 amberjack and 85 triggerfish.
Good fishing, Eric