November 22, 2014
After a series of late season tropical storm fronts developing, this past week we saw weather patterns return to the more prevalent Fall conditions. Early morning chill, offshore breeze early in the day, shifting to variable winds predominately from the north. Ocean water temperatures were still holding 80/81 degrees, we expect that cooler current will gradually swept into the region. All in all the climate is ideal now, while much of the U.S. has endured record early cold waves, we are still wearing shorts in the warm 80 degree sunshine. Crowds have been lighter than you would expect for this time of year, but actually businesses have been much busier than in previous weeks, so it is nice to see the activity.
Live bait supplies seemed to have rebounded some after recent shortages, sardinas, caballito and some ballyhoo have been available. Skipjack, bolito and chihuil have been other baitfish options, though never a guarantee they will cooperate on the fishing grounds. Fishing action has been spread out from the Pacific to the grounds north of Punta Gorda, no real temperature break being found anywhere. Most San Jose del Cabo charters are now fishing in the direction of the Sea of Cortez, there had been a bite going on for smaller sized tuna, dorado and wahoo off of Santa Maria and Chileno , but this action became more inconsistent through the week and fleets were finding better chances in the vicinity of the Iman Bank.
Anglers found sporadic action for yellowfin tuna, at times in feeding frenzies, other times not biting until later, though other days early action was best, areas close off of La Fortuna and Punta Gorda also were holding the schooling yellowfin tuna. One key was having the sardinas for bait. These tuna averaged 10 to 20 pounds, various skipjack were mixed with them. An occasional much larger tuna, weighing from 60 to over 200 pounds, was being accounted for, no big numbers though, Gordo Banks was the best bet at trying to find the larger grade of yellowfin. These fish were all hitting on various baits, either live, dead or chunk. They were not being taken on lures.
Most of the wahoo were striking on baits, as compared to on lures, you never know with these elusive spooky fish, they are very unpredictable. Many small wahoo under ten pounds were in the area, particularly closer to Cabo San Lucas, though there were quite a few fish in the 20 to 40 pound class and then an occasional larger specimen over 50 pounds also being reported. Most of this wahoo action was from Punta Gorda and further north.
More dorado are now being encountered off of San José del Cabo grounds, though the majority have been smaller sized fish, remember to release these juvenile fish, so that they can mature and reproduce, helping to maintain the future fishery. More sierra now moving inshore, always a sign of cooling currents to come.
Off the bottom rock piles there have been a handful of dogtooth snapper, amberjack, pargo, cabrilla and bonito found, though this has not been consistent and with increasing late morning winds from the north, this has not been a practical option at times. Billfish became even more scattered, probably the best bet would in the direction of the Pacific banks. With the warm ocean temperatures and plentiful schools of skipjack, there are still chances of the black and blue marlin hanging throughout the present year.
The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 205 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 4 striped marlin, 115 wahoo, 590 yellowfin tuna, 310 dorado, 22 bonito, 150 skipjack, 23 cabrilla, 5 amberjack, 28 sierra, 15 jack crevalle, 2 roosterfish, 14 pargo and 6 dogtooth snapper.
Good fishing, Eric