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Scattered Action, Changing Conditions ~ Oct. 25, 2020

October 25, 2020

With the resurgence of corona virus cases in areas throughout the U.S. and with the upcoming election we are seeing fluctuating numbers of visitors, less than half the amount than we would expect for this time frame. Though locally the tourist industry is following strict health protocols and the situation seems under control, people are just nervous about dealing with airport travel and worried about the whole deal. The richest marlin tournament in the world was held this week, with some 129 teams battling for a record sum of 4.6 million dollars. The event ran for three days and there ended up not being any qualifying fish over 300 lb. landed, so there were no huge pay outs this year, though there were several stories of huge fish being lost, which if landed would have been worth millions. We will hope for better results next year.

With ocean temperatures in the upper 80s conditions seemed unusually wam, though presently we are feeling a cooling trend and the coming week is forecast to bring more north wind and cooler temperatures, so we should also see water cool off and are hoping the all-around action improves. Anglers were using sardinas, slabs of squid mainly for bait, with some larger baitfish found on the fishing grounds as well. Schooling sardinas were now more abundant along beach stretches near Chileno.

The highlight this week was a 311 lb. yellowfin tuna that was weighed in on Saturday, taken by a group of anglers on the local sportfisher “Bacco” out of Puerto Los Cabos after a 3 1/2 hour battle on the Gordo Banks. The overall tuna bite was very slow this week, another 110 lb. tuna was brought in from a super panga mid-week and a scattering of a few other yellowfin in the 30 to 70 lb. class, but limited numbers. Most of these fish were taken near the San Luis Bank. One factor on the slower action seems to be the added pressure of all of the Ease Cape charters also traveling long distances to congregate and fish on our local grounds.

Wahoo were becoming more active, still spotty, but a couple of charters ended up with between 3 and 5 wahoo per morning. Most of this action near Iman Bank and further north while trolling Rapalas, sizes ranged to over 40 lb. We expect this wahoo bite to improve in coming weeks as water cools some. Dorado action was sporadic as well, some days we were seeing decent numbers of fish up to 15 lb., while other days we would only see a fish or two.

Not much reported off the bottom, a handful of various pargo species, bonito and even some out of season roosterfish caught near shallow rock outcroppings, a couple of these over 40 lb.

A few sierra were starting to show up as well, as their season will just be getting underway.

Good fishing, Eric

Busy Times, Fish Finicky ~ October 18, 2020

GORDO BANKS PANGAS

October 18, 2020

We continue to see larger crowds of anglers arriving, as this is always one of the busiest times for sportfishing fleets in the Los Cabos area. Also this is big tournament time, with the Los Cabos Billfish and Bisbee Offshore just finishing and this next week there will be the largest and richest of all, the Bisbee’s Black and Blue event, followed early next month by the WON Tuna Jackpot. Overall this season will be remembered as the year of unpresented numbers of changes and cancellations, all this due to the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.

Weather patterns were again increasingly tropical, as mornings had started to be a little chilly, not anymore, as lows were back in the upper 70’s and highs about 90 degrees, but combined with humidity factor the heat index was more like 99 degrees. This change all happened at the start of this past week, as a tropical low pressure system developed off to the west of the Southern Peninsula. On Tuesday morning we received about one inch of rain, more than what was originally forecast, though we did still have charters fishing that day, as weather front passed through by mid-morning. The rest of the week has been clear with slight swells and little wind. Ocean water temperature actually warmed back up, as it had been on a cooling trend, but now it was back into the 87 degree range.

Local fleets were mostly fishing the grounds from the Gordo Banks and north towards Vinorama, main bait source has been sardinas, with slabs of squid also being used. Despite ideal ocean conditions most days, the all-around action was more hit or miss. Perhaps the sudden warmer water put the fish off the bite, hard to say, also added pressure. Main catch we saw was for dorado, with the majority of these fish taken while trolling and they were weighing in the 5 to 15 lb. range. Very few wahoo landed, but we did see a handful of them brought in, most of these hit on trolled Rapalas and were in the 20 to 40 lb. class. As water temperature drops back near 80 degrees we expect to see much better activity on these sought after gamefish.

We did see a few nice yellowfin tuna brought to the scales, topping 130 lb. and a couple of cows over 200 lb. were taken during recent tournaments. Most of the tuna we are seeing are more in the 50 to 70 lb. class, though even these became more elusive in recent days. Most of the tuna were taken on sardinas, though larger baits were also used for chance at the cows. The Gordo Banks produced a few of the larger tuna, though more charters are trying their luck on the Iman, San Luis and Vinorama grounds where action had been more consistent.

Off the bottom a handful of nice dogtooth snapper, cabrilla and amberjack were accounted for, though no consistent action to speak of and numbers were limited. Billfish action was spread out, we saw more sailfish than anything else, but a few much larger blue and black marlin were in the area, as we saw a few of them weighed in during recent tournaments, the largest being the 593 lb. black marlin taken by legendary La Playita pangero Hugo Pino, who also caught the winning yellowfin tuna of 236 lb. during the same event.

Good fishing, Eric

Fall Season, More Anglers Arrive, Scattered Action ~ October 11, 2020

GORDO BANKS PANGAS

October 11, 2020

We are now seeing more numbers of anglers arriving, as the start of the busy fall season has officially begun. Weather patterns are ideal, mornings are starting to chill off slightly, had lows down to 73 degrees, though by mid-day temperatures are still quite warm, around 90 degrees. No storms seen developing on the forecasts now and ocean conditions have remained very calm for the most part, though we did see some wind picking up later in the day. Water temperature still averaging about 85 degrees.

Anglers are mainly relying on sardinas for bait, which are found along the beach stretches near the Marina entrance, other options have been strips of squid and ballyhoo. Larger baitfish such as chihuil and skipjack are being found on the fishing grounds, but have not been a guarantee for finding them each morning. Local fleets this past week were fishing from off of Palmilla Point, Gordo Banks, La Fortuna, Iman, and as far north as Vinorama. The all-around action was more sporadic this past week, changing daily as for where the better bite was found.

Mid-week there was good action found close to shore off of Palmilla Point for both wahoo and dorado, then as the word spread more boats showed up and this action faded out. Wahoo to up to 40 lb. were reported and dorado to 25 lb., many charters limiting out. Later in the week the action slowed and most boats were heading towards the north, yellowfin tuna were harder to find, though they were seen, getting them to bite was another story, of the tuna found, they ranged from 10 to 70 lb., though larger fish to 150 lb. were hooked into, but lost. Anglers were doing well to land one or tuna in their overall catch.

Not much bottom action, though a handful of dogtooth snapper were landed, earlier in the week mainly, also a few amberjack and grouper, but nothing consistent now going off the bottom. Billfish were limited as well, a few sailfish were landed, as well as blue and black marlin hook ups, one estimated 500 lb. black was lost after a battle from a super panga and one blue marlin or about 200 lb. landed. The problem is if the marlin strike while anglers are using lighter leaders intended for line shy tuna, they did not stand much of a chance. Big marlin are in the area, just have to put in some serious time specially targeting them.

Good fishing, Eric