November 10, 2018
This is the week of the WON Los Cabos Tuna Jackpot Tournament, a record 163 teams are in the hunt for some $800,000 of prize money. Large crowds of anglers are filling sportfishing fleets to capacity. Weather patterns have been typical for fall, sunny days with high temperatures in the 80s and variable winds, mainly from the north. Ocean swells were minimal and water temperatures averaged 82 to 83 degrees
Bait suppliers were working overtime trying their best to find enough resources for all of the fishing charters. Sardinas have been scarce the past few weeks, schools of these baitfish are now being found off of the Chileno area in limited quantities, though they are smaller than average size. Supplies of giant squid slabs have run completely out in recent days, waiting for new shipments to arrive. Caballito are being netted inside of the PLC marina channel and numbers seem to be holding up okay, ballyhoo is another bait being offered, rig for surface trolling, special for dorado, wahoo and billfish.. Small sized skipjack on the offshore grounds have been used for the larger gamefish, also some chihuil are being found on high spots, time consuming to try and catch these candy baits.
The majority of charters from Puerto Los Cabos Marina are now concentrated on the Iman, San Luis and Vinorama Banks, though there has been a percentage searching out the waters off of Santa Maria and Red Hill. The highlight for most common catches has been the yellowfin tuna. Though overall action has been hit and miss, lots of pressure day in and day out, at times bait shortages as well, best chances seemed to be early morning on the San Luis Bank, drift fishing squid, slow troll skipjack, caballito or chihuil, produced a quality grade of fish, no big numbers, but fish in the 10 to 80 lb. class were most common. The largest fish of the week was caught aboard the super panga “Killer II”, with skipper Chame Pino, anglers Craig Kojima and Steve Terp teamed up to battle the super cow which was weighed in at 302.5 lb. The largest tuna we have seen weighed at our dock area this season. At least one tuna in the 250 lb. class landed off of the Gordo Banks during recent tournament. Encouraging to finally see the cows moving in, we have not seen any of these giant tuna on these grounds yet this season. Warm water temperatures should help keep these fish in the region later in the year. The overall action for yellowfin seemed to have been more consistent early in the week, progressively tougher as the week progressed. Heavy pressure on these local fishing grounds can make fish that much more spookier.
We saw many more dorado being landed, later in the week. These fish were found closer to shore, such as off Palmilla Point or Punta Gorda, once schools were located they would readily hit various bait, especially the small caballito. We saw a handful of larger specimens up around 25 lb. Wahoo action was hit and miss, though these fish are definitely still in the area and we are seeing some of them caught every day, some days many more than others. These fish seem to be the most wary of heavy boat and angler pressure. Wahoo were striking on lures and bait, but bait seemed to produce greater chances, sizes up to 45 lb. Anglers were doing well to land a couple of wahoo, they are an elusive species and highly sought after. Minimal bottom action recently, bonito and triggerfish being the main catch, tough earlier in the week there was one 65 lb. amberjack landed, a few nice cabrilla and snapper.
Warm currents have kept some sailfish in the area, also there was a 200 lb. black marlin landed as well as a scattering of striped marlin. Off of the Pacific side of Cabo San Lucas the striped marlin action was breaking wide open off of the light house, feeders, tailers and free jumping marlin in good numbers.
The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 228 charters for the week. Anglers reported a fish count of: 1 black marlin, 14 striped marlin, 12 sailfish, 84 dorado, 44 wahoo, 290 yellowfin tuna, 150 bonito, 90 white skipjack, red snapper, 12 amberjack, 16 barred pargo, 8 yellow snapper, 4 dogtooth snapper, 18 cabrilla, 10 sierra, 15 roosterfish, 12 jack crevalle and 200 triggerfish.
Good fishing, Eric