Tuna Action off Vinorama ~ August 27, 2023

August 27, 2023

This week local weather did stabilize, after the close call last week with Hurricane Hilary, presently there are a couple of tropical depressions developing off of the Southern Mexican coast, though we are not expecting them to impact the Southern Baja region. Weather has been hot and humid as is normal for this time of year, early morning there is a slight cooling trend, but minimal and hardly noticeable.

Light crowds of visiting anglers, though quite a few locals are taking advantage of the good tuna action which has been going on off of Vinorama. Yellowfin tuna ranging in sizes from small footballs up to 80 lb. are schooling on these grounds. Striking best while drift fishing with strips of squid. Early in the day has been the better bite, though some days they are striking at different hours, as well as later in the afternoon for the few that tried that time frame.

Currents and water clarity have been a factor as well, as has been boat pressure on this relatively small area. This has been the one spot where the fishing area has been more productive, boats are arriving from various directions to work these grounds.

Average catches per boat for these yellowfins were ranging from one or two fish, up to five or six. An occasional wahoo was hooked into and same with dorado, a few in the mix as well, but most were small juvenile sized fish. Not much billfish action reported either, as most anglers have been targeting the tuna bite.

Off the bottom there were more triggerfish than anything else, though surprisingly there were some of the normally colder water species, white bonito be hooked into, as well as a few leopard grouper, snapper and the highlight off the rock piles were a couple of dogtooth snapper up to 30 lb. We heard reports of some commercial activity from local pangas on the Gordo Banks that accounted for a couple of nice home guard yellowtail, they supposedly dealt with shark action as well.

Nothing to report along the beach stretches now and this time of year that action fades out.

Good Fishing, Eric

Hurricane Hilary Close Call, More Tuna ~ August 20, 2023


August 20, 2023

This week started out with normal, summer conditions, hot and humid weather greeting light crowds of visiting anglers. We were all following extended weather forecasts, which is always what we do during this peak season time frame for tropical storm development, we were particularly tuned in to the rapid development and strengthening of Hurricane Hilary off Mainland Mexico.

This system rapidly intensified to a category four storm, passing within a couple hundred miles west of Southern Baja, fortunately the eye of the storm was just far enough away from the Los Cabos area to keep disastrous effects to a minimal, of course on the Todo Santos side of the Peninsula and at Guerrero Negro they did receive more of the blunt force from Hilary.

Local Port authorities shut down all activities from Friday and through the weekend, we are hoping to reopen operations on Monday. This will mean hauling all of the boats back into the marina, since there was a mandatory haul out order given for our panga area. Scattered power blackouts were another thing local interests were having to deal with.

Before the latest storm developed, local fleets were busy working near Vinorama, this was the main center of activity the past couple of weeks. This is where the yellowfin tuna bite has been centered, best bet was to arrive early as possible, before heavy pressure came and made the tuna even that much more finicky. Drift fishing with strips of squid was what these fish were striking on. Sizes ranged from footballs, to up to over 80 lb. You had to work hard but many boats were landing up to four or five yellowfin. As the week progressed the winds from the south increased and made conditions that much tougher.

Not much going off the bottom now besides a handful of triggerfish and a few dogtooth snapper. Billfish bite was spread out, though there was 300 plus lb. black marlin landed from a small panga after a 4 hour battle, a few striped marlin in the mix as well.

A bunch of mostly smaller sized dorado found off the marina area and towards Palmilla. Also a couple of wahoo were seen for the first time in a while, including one monster specimen that weighed in at 72 lb., hit on a trolled lure in open water, while returning from the tuna grounds.

Good Fishing, Eric

Tuna Bite at Vinorama ~ August 13, 2023

August 13, 2023

We continue to get deeper into the tropical storm season now, up until now we have had a series of storms passing just far enough off to the southwest that they have not made any major impact on Southern Baja. The latest systems were Dora, Eugene and now Fernanda. Last Sunday morning there were some scattered rain showers, quickly passing and the rest of the week was mostly clear, just scattered cloud cover, building over the mountain ranges in the afternoon, the typical late summer patterns. Quite warm now, with high humidity, heat index ranging up to 106 degrees. Light crowds of anglers as well, even though this past week the all around fishing action was much improved.

Anglers were now using mostly strips of squid, especially for the chances at yellowfin tuna near Vinorama. There have been limited supplies of caballito and sardinas available on some days, ballyhoo  has been another option. Currents have been swift some days, before slacking on others, ocean temperatures now in the upper 80 degree range, no signs of cooling off at all yet.

The main concentration of boats now has been off of Vinorama, boats from the East Cape are also motoring south to these same grounds, as well as all of the San Jose del Cabo charters. Small area with a larger mass of boats everyday, usually somewhere between 30 and 60 boats, puts a lot of pressure on these already finicky yellowfin tuna. This is the main action now, that is why everyone is targeting this area. Average catches ranged up to five tuna per boat and sizes were from 10 to 70 plus pounds. All of these yellowfin were striking on the strips of squid and early in the day before the heavy crowds arrived proved to be the best time to hook up.

There was another bite going on for mostly smaller sized dorado straight offshore of the Puerto Los Cabos Marina, trolling small lures, hoochies and ballyhoo. Rare to find any dorado now over ten pounds though. A handful of charters tried bottom action, more triggerfish than anything else, a few pompano and the highlight were a few dogtooth snapper up to 25 pounds.

Not much being reported along the shoreline, late in the season now for roosterfish. Billfish action was very spread out, heard better reports from the Pacific grounds, not many many charters on our grounds were even trying for marlin, since the tuna bite finally improved and everyone was hot after this bite, heavy pressure was on. It is the time of year we usually see the season’s first black marlin showing up around the Gordo Banks, though supposedly their favorite food fish, the football sized yellowfin tuna have yet to show on these grounds.

Good Fishing, Eric–