Calm Seas, Quality Fishing ~ September 20, 2020

GORDO BANKS PANGAS

September 20, 2020

Entering the fall season now, for the Los Cabos region this is the most tropical period, high humidity, scattered very tropical cloud cover and always a chance at isolated rain showers. Not many tourists now, as this is normally a slack time for travelers, even more so this year due to Covid 19, in another few weeks the area will become much busier, high stakes tournament time. The entire month has been very quiet in the Eastern Pacific for tropical storms, though the Atlantic has been a different story. Almost eerie, how it is so quiet now, there is a distance low pressure system, developing far to the south, forecast to strengthen some as it heads off to the west. With local ocean temperatures now as high as 88 degrees, still high possibilities that if conditions become favorable, powerful storms can develop quickly and in close proximity.

For the few anglers that were in town, they enjoyed mostly flat calm seas with minimal breeze, with the exception over the weekend when passing storm clouds kicked up winds, creating choppy seas, but as clouds passed through, seas calmed down again, no rain was reported, higher mountain areas had some isolated rain squalls. Extended forecast say that these calm tropical conditions will remain similar for next ten days, hopefully they are right.

Main bait now be offered are sardinas and slabs of squid. This is what the better action was found on. Yellowfin tuna has been the most common gamefish being targeted, the tuna have been found from the Gordo Banks, north to Vinorama, Iman Bank was one of the more popular areas this week. Boats from the north, East Cape, are arriving on these same grounds, adding to the concentrated pressure. Early bite was particularly good for yellowfin, which have been in the 10 to 80 lb. range, average fish 40 to 60 lb. Larger cow size tuna were seen, proved to be finicky, quickly disappearing, though they are in the area and with these calm conditions, the ocean is becoming riper for wide open action to break loose. Boats now were averaged one or two tuna, or sometimes up to five or six, depending exactly where you happened to be.

Not as many dorado or wahoo being found, though they are in the area and some were accoutered for, most of the dorado were small fish, have not seen any large bulls recently, the few wahoo we have seen were in the 20 to 35 lb. class. Minimal bottom action, mixed species, a few quality fish, amberjack to 45 lb., one 65 lb. dogtooth snapper, barred pargo, bonito, pargo cororado and one black sea bass by local commercial pangeros, about 70 lb.

Last weekend and the first part of this past week, there were a handful of black marlin hooked into, most of these from the vicinity of the Gordo Banks and while trolling skipjack or bolito baits. At least three blacks were landed and brought in, they ranged in sizes from 340 lb. to close to 500 lb. Several sailfish and striped marlin also were reported.

Light crowds, good fishing, Eric

Yellowfin Tuna Bite, Calm Waters ~ September 13, 2020

GORDO BANKS PANGAS

September 13, 2020

We are seeing light numbers of tourists now, for the few that are here they have been enjoying calm weather patterns for the past week now, scattered tropical cloud cover, high humidity and light afternoon breezes. The early mornings are just starting to feel fall like, slightly cooler, but still not much needed besides shorts and t-shirts now. There is a Tropical Storm Karina lurking about 250 miles off to the west of Todo Santos, we are not feeling much from this at all, besides humidity, perhaps some isolated rain showers, but limited. Forecast looks favorable for another week, this is now the sixth anniversary of the devastating Hurricane Odile, which caused catastrophic damage to the Los Cabos region. Weather can develop rapidly this time of year, so we will be monitoring reports closely.

Ocean is now averaging 80 to 84 degrees, cleaner blue water found within a couple miles of shore. Some scattered schools of sardinas are now congregating around the marina jetties, as well as some caballito, though in recent days the more consistent action was found while using sardina, as well as strips of squid, which are also available through local bait vendors. There were reports of chihuil being chummed up on the high spots, also some skipjack and bolito being used for larger trolled baits.

The hot wahoo bite from the week before has now fading out, perhaps wahoo are sluggish in the warmer currents, as they can become, also back side of full moon and put them off, though surely they are still in the area and certain conditions could trigger activity again. Yellowfin tuna are now the main gamefish species being found. Some scattered dorado as well, found while trolling lures and drift fishing baits.

The schooling yellowfin have been found near San Luis, Iman Banks, north to Vinorama and in recent days the tuna became more active on the Inner Gordo Bank. The most successful methods being used were drift fishing with sardinas, dead or live, as well as using strips of squid. The caballito baits have not been as enticing this past week, yellowfin now preferring sardina or squid. Average size tuna was in the 40 to 70 lb. class, charters were landing one, two three and four of these tuna per morning, using 40 to 60 lb. line mainly, the fish a bit finicky at times, fluorocarbon leaders of 50 to 60 lb. being used, strong fish, sometimes taking an hour to land.

A few marlin sightings, hook ups as well, but did not hear of any large marlin being landed. Not much off the bottom besides red snapper, a couple of amberjack and dogtooth snapper. Always a chance at a big grouper this time of year, but not many anglers are specifically targeting those at this time.

Light crowds, good fishing, Eric

Calm Seas, Wahoo & Tuna Keep Anglers Busy ~ September 6, 2020

GORDO BANKS PANGAS

September 6, 2020

We are now into the first week of the most tropical and unpredictable month of the year, always watching forecast closely and seeing light crowds of tourists arriving, never is this the busiest time of the season, though this year things are predictably even slower. This week the weather patterns were more stable though the entire week, giving ocean conditions a chance to recover and the water clarity became much cleaner, blue water found within a few miles of shore. Ocean temperature was now in the 80 to 84 degree range. This is also the most humid time of the year, with recent rainfall and hillside landscape has transformed to lush green, season to have insect repellant handy.

The majority of local charters have now been concentrating efforts on the grounds from the Gordo Banks and north to Vinorama, as these are normally the most productive areas during the summer months. The whole summer season was slow to get on track, lots of dirty currents moving cooler water through, more south wind than normal, but finally this past week weather patterns stabilized and the fishing action improved significantly. Anglers were using caballito and rigged ballyhoo for baits, also a few scattered schools of sardinas are being located near marina jetty. On the fishing grounds themselves there have been some small skipjack and bolito caught and are being used for trolling.

We are now monitoring Tropical Storm Julio, which meteorologists are having a hard time figuring out exactly what it is going to do. Consensus is it will weaken as it passes a couple of hundred miles off on the Pacific side of Cabo San Lucas, though we are expecting scattered rain showers.

The yellowfin tuna bite was more productive around the San Luis Bank, striking mainly on caballito and average size was in the 40 to 70 lb. range, many boats accounted for several of these tuna. Highlight for the week for the season’s first super cow, a 366 ft. yellowfin tuna which was brought in on Friday from a 23 ft. super panga operated by Jesus Banaga of La Playita. They hooked this fish while trolling a medium sized skipjack near the Inner Gordo Banks and it took them 2 1/2 hours to land.

The wahoo went on a great bite this week, striking readily on trolled Rapalas throughout the zone from La Fortuna to Vinorama. Many charters were landing 3 to 5 wahoo, while losing other strikes as well, average sizes ranged from 15 to 35 lb. Nice to see these wahoo, it has been a while since we have seen them in numbers like this. Fast, aggressive and very fun gamefish to catch, as well as being highly sought after and prized for eating.

Dorado were found scattered throughout, no huge numbers, but found while trolling in small schools, sizes ranged to 20 lb., majority were 5 to 12 lb. Not a lot of billfish action, an occasional sailfish reported on the same tuna and wahoo grounds, also a couple of larger blue or black marlin hook ups which were lost, a few striped marlin hanging around in the warm waters as well. We will look to see more of the big marlin to show up the next two months, big tournament season coming soon.

Not much reported off the bottom, as more anglers are now trying for the wahoo and tuna. Nor did we hear anything going on close to shore, again no anglers really trying this, as they were offshore on the banks for other species.

Light crowds, good fishing, Eric