January 27, 2018
Through December and the first half of January the weather patterns in the Los Cabos area was very ideal, warmer than usual, with the normally very persistent north winds being much lighter and not even much of a factor, this in turn also contributed to the ocean water temperatures holding several degrees warmer than normal, all this was good news for keeping the pelagic gamefish such as dorado, yellowfin tuna and wahoo on local fishing grounds. This past week light crowds of visitors were greeted with stronger gusting winds from the north, starting last Sunday and finally tapering off by later in the week. Water temperatures were down in the 70 to 75 degree range, with the coldest currents now pushing south from Los Frailes in the direction of the Gordo Banks.
The bait supply remained steady for sardinas, with the main concentrations of these preferred bait now centered near Cabo Real, other options being used are caballito, mackerel and strips of squid. The highlight for action recently has been on the Gordo Banks for quality sized yellowfin tuna, with fish in the 50 to 150 lb. range being hooked into while drift fishing. Finicky action, where with the wind made it even much tougher, but fish were still being hooked into, some lost and a percentage landed, basically if you did accountant for one or two of these tuna you were fortunate. A lot of factors were involved, first the fish were hitting best on leader not heavier than 50 or 60 lb., which resulted in many of the larger fish breaking off, then there were sea lions and sharks that taking their share as well. Heavy pressure was on these grounds now, as this was one of the better options available. Late in the week the action was progressively slowing down as compared to last week and the first few days of this week. Other tuna action for a smaller grade of fish was found off of Santa Maria, but there were no big numbers there either and that bite was on one day and then off the other, very hit or miss, but was a decent option since it was close to shore in more protected waters.
Dorado action is tapering off as well, which would be normal for this time of year, some fish were found on the same grounds as were the tuna and other found close to shore, best chances were on various baits and sizes ranged up to 15 lb. Average catches for dorado were now less than one per charter. No wahoo to report, though chances are there are still a few them hanging around.
Not a whole lot of bottom action going on, particularly with the stiffer winds creating choppy seas and swift currents. Closer to shore off of shallow rock piles there were some pargo, red snapper, amberjack, leopard grouper, bonito and triggerfish found, but this action was limited. Close to shore there were smaller sized roosterfish off of the San Jose del Cabo hotel zone and around on the Pacific there was better action reported for sierra, hopefully this is a favorable sign that these fish are heading in the direction of the Sea of Cortez as well.
Billfish activity increased some out of San Jose del Cabo, still no big numbers, but everyday anglers are reportedly spotting a few striped marlin on the local grounds and some were hooked on trolled lures, as well as on various larger baitfish. Early week there was a black marlin, estimated close to 50 lb. brought in to Puerto Los Cabos Marina off of a cruiser, definitely out of season, but just proves that you really never know what can happen on a given day.
Peak season now for whale activity, some of the best viewing can be found on the same regular fishing grounds, no need to take a specific trip looking for them, you can see plenty of these mammals as you are also fishing.
The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 69 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 1 black marlin, 1 spearfish, 11 striped marlin, 11 sierra, 55 yellowfin tuna, 62 dorado, 12 amberjack, 17 yellow snapper, 6 barred pargo, 15 Eastern Pacific bonito, 18 roosterfish, 18 cabrilla (leopard grouper), 3 broom tail grouper, 25 huachinango (red snapper) and 65 triggerfish.
Good fishing, Eric