January 9, 2016
With the holiday season now coming to a close we are seeing lighter crowds of visitors arriving, we do expect as winter sets in across the United States, more people will be looking to travel south in search of some warm sunshine. We have seen scattered cloud cover, early morning lows in the 50s, with daytime highs reaching into the upper 70s. North winds have been variable, not as strong as during previous weeks, so anglers have been enjoying favorable conditions on the water. The annual migration of whales is now in full swing, after being a little late arriving in such numbers, these mammals can now be seen on a regular basis every day.
The bait situation continues much the same, no new resource for sardinas, nor have we seen any mackerel or sardinetas, we have been relying on slabs of squid, caballito and ballyhoo. Hard to say when we might see sardinas move back within our range. Anglers are finding better action using the available bait, versus trolling artificial lures. San Jose del Cabo fleets are concentrating on the fishing grounds from Red Hill, Gordo Banks and north to Iman Bank. One of the more productive areas in recent days has been La Fortuna, or the 25 spot. This is where yellowfin tuna in the 15 to 30 pound class have been striking on strips of squid. Action has been a bit sporadic from day to day, some days the fish bite early and some days later, the key is to be in the right place at the correct time. This same area is also producing decent catches off the bottom for huachinango (red snapper), some amberjack, cabrilla and bonito.
The action off of Punta Gorda had been good for tuna, but then switched north to La Fortuna, huachinango have been hitting on these grounds early in the morning, and anglers were using strips of squid for these quality snapper, which ranged up to 12 pounds. Dorado were scattered, best chance for these gamefish seemed to be closer to shore, more baitfish close in now to attract these fish, dorado were hitting best on rigged ballyhoo, more often later in the morning, finding circling frigate birds has been the best way to find the dorado. Most of the dorado we have seen were ranging in the 10 to 20 lb. class.
Not much going on with wahoo now, though they are still in the area, some are being seen very close to shore, which is fairly common for this time of year. Actually more anglers were targeting the tuna action, chances are if you did specially target the wahoo with larger trap rigged baits is that you could find one or two of these fish and we do expect to see these elusive fish become more active as we enter the coming favorable moon phase. Ocean water temperatures are now averaging 75 degrees.
There has been inshore opportunities for roosterfish, though the majority of the roosterfish this time of year are smaller sized, not easy to hook with larger baits, these juvenile fish can be fragile to safely catch and release. Sierra action has been slim with the lack of sardinas, though surf anglers have been catching fair numbers of these feisty fish at first light off of the local beaches.
The marlin action off of San Jose del Cabo dissipated, food source must have moved on, now some striped marlin are being found scattered offshore, no particular hot spot and in limited numbers, best bet was to troll lures and look for signs of fish, then try and drop a bait back. With cooling water temperatures we have not heard of any more black marlin hook ups around the Gordo Banks.
The combined panga fleets launching out of La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos Marina sent out approximately 74 charters for the week, with anglers reporting a fish count of: 5 striped marlin, 11 wahoo, 225 yellowfin tuna, 32 dorado, 13 cabrilla, 132 huachinango, 30 yellow snapper, 19 amberjack, 4 sierra, 23 bonito, 16 roosterfish and 65 triggerfish.
Good fishing, Eric