Mixed Action, More Tuna Seen ~ April 25, 2021

April 25, 2021

The spring season continues to be unpredictable, conditions changing daily, overall climate is great, highs in low 80s, crowds of tourists remain light, slowly transitioning ocean has anglers scattering in all directions searching for productive action. Water temperature has ranged from 70 to 73 degrees, depending where you are, warmest currents being found from the Gordo Banks towards Los Frailes. Ocean clarity is improving, though on and off north winds continued to slow this process. Swells increased some this week, coinciding with the full moon cycle.

Local bait supplies remained steady for caballito, also a mix of sardinas being found, slabs of squid and ballyhoo have been other options. The majority of the limited numbers of charters going out have found the most consistent action working the bottom structures near La Fortuna, Iman and San Luis Banks. Drift fishing over these high spots while using yo-yo jigs and a mix of baits produced a variety of species. Most common catch was the Mexican bonito, though there were some quality red snapper, cabrilla (leopard grouper) and amberjack also being accounted for, average catches per boat was in the 8 to 15 fish range, so overall the bite did improve some over the past week.

There were more yellowfin tuna seen this week, sizes ranged from 15 to 90 lb. These fish were taken off of the similar grounds where bottom action was found, the tuna hit on strips of squid mainly, but also some were taken on the yo-yo style jigs. So this is encouraging news, even though numbers were not great, one boat did have four tuna in one morning, at least we are seeing more than we have recently and this action should only improve as conditions continue to warm, winds settle and water clears.

There have been reports of decent billfish action being found offshore near the 1150 spot, also a few nice dorado being found on the same grounds, where water has been blue and warmer. With the weather still a bit hit or miss and with only being small numbers of anglers in town, we have not had many boats going farther offshore, most opting to fish closer in where numbers and variety were decent.

Inshore action was limited to mainly an on and off sierra bite, depending where the fish happen to be on a certain day, also a few nice sized jack crevalle and an occasional pompano or pargo colorado.

Good fishing, Eric

Great Weather, Limited Anglers in Town ~ April 18, 2021

April 18, 2021

This month started off with us seeing more numbers of tourists and visiting anglers arriving, a little flurry during spring break. Now mid-month we are seeing very limited numbers of anglers showing up, even though we have had more interest with people asking about reservations for the coming fall season. It looks as though this will be a slow spring and summer season for local fishing businesses. As Covid vaccines are becoming more readily available, even to local residents at this time, people seem to still be more hesitant to travel internationally. The weather recently is very pleasant, ideal climate, light scattered early morning marine layer cloud cover, lighter winds and high temperatures of about 85 degrees. Great time to visit, with the lighter crowds and excellent climate.

Ocean conditions have been slow to transition this season, but water temperature is now in the 72/73 degree range and cleaner water is slowly pushing back closer to shore. In the meantime anglers have found the most productive fishing action to be off the bottom rock structure and along the shoreline. Most common species being the Mexican bonito, which has been the case for the past month now. An occasional yellowtail, amberjack, grouper or red snapper mixed in. Main bait source has continued to be caballito, no sardinas to speak of, except some of the softer clear type that are only used as dead bait. We did see one or two tuna through the week, caught off the same areas where anglers were bottom fishing. As temperatures improve, warmer and cleaner water appear in the coming weeks we do anticipate surface activity to break open.

Along the shoreline the main action was for sierra and jack crevalle, as water warms up we should see more roosterfish move in. Normal patterns usually see the end of April as a major turning point for water conditions becoming more attractive to the popular gamefish, so we are anxious to see this happen. We are also optimistic that once anglers see that fish reports are greatly improved that they will decide to visit.

Good fishing, Eric

Spring Break, Changing Conditions, a few Wahoo ~ April 11, 2021

April 11, 2021

With the local Easter vacation week now past, beach crowds have returned to more reasonable levels and most residents are now back to work. We are seeing larger numbers of tourists arriving due to this now being spring break period for many schools in the U.S. Though not a high percentage of these visitors are anglers, so for this reason we have limited numbers of fishing charters. This is now a transition period for ocean conditions, a slow unpredictable process, when northern winds reside and ocean currents stabilize, becoming warmer and bringing in blue water closer to shore. At this time water temperature has been in the 69 to 71 degree range throughout the zone. Daytime highs are reaching the mid-80s and it is also the time when the cool ocean and warm land air currents mix and create a marine layer, resulting in thick fog at times and limited visibility.

Supplies of caballito remain steady in the marina area, though sardinas have been scarce, not being found in close enough proximity for commercial bait netters to find. Some charters were able to jig up some additional larger baitfish such as chihuil, scad and spanish mackerel near the Gordo Banks.

Overall the better fishing action was found close to shore for good numbers of sierra, with the large sized jack crevalle mixed in. Also there was a variety of species being accounted for over the many rocky high spots, with anglers using a mix of yo-yo jigs and bait while drift fishing. Most numerous are the Mexican bonito, these are different than the Californian bonito, the local bonito taste similar to tuna and can be prepared all the same ways, they are feisty fighters, though average in the 4 to 8 lb. range. We did see one 40 lb. yellowfin tuna early in the week, but with currents shifting and becoming a little off colored again these tuna are not on the bite now.

Despite the cooler water we did see a few wahoo starting to bite on the grounds to the north of Punta Gorda, striking on trolled Rapalas and yo-yo jigs, sizes were up to 25 lb., still only a few fish being seen, but this is encouraging for when water conditions improve slightly we should see these fish become more active. Conditions can change rapidly this time of year and we are definitely feeling the weather become a bit warmer every day.

We did see a few nice cabrilla, grouper and amberjack landed, a couple of these were in the fifty pound class. Not as many red snapper as we would normally expect for this time frame, though it is still early in the season, pelagic red crabs were not being seen at this time either.

With limited anglers in town we did not see many reports for offshore action for the striped marlin, last we knew they were seeing the billfish near the 1150 spot.

Good fishing, Eric