Fishing Report! 12-11-06
Striped marlin and dorado continue to lead the way in terms of the offshore species here on the East Cape. Good numbers of stripers are around and susceptible to both trolled lures and pitched live bait. Primarily mackerel are available as bait. Average size for the mahi-mahi have dropped a bit from the huge fish we were seeing earlier in the fall (some 60-pounders were being caught!). Dorado now are in the 25-35 pound range, still a nice size. The yellowfin tuna schools have moved out of our area, which is typical for this time of year as the water temperatures cool from their 90-degree summer range into the low-70’s. Our water temps are ranging from 72-78 degrees now. A few nice wahoo are being caught in the 40-pound range, and our biggest blue marlin of the fall weighed in at over 500 pounds.
Inshore, some sierra mackerel are in the vicinity of La Ribera, and a few roosterfish are still being caught, although the fish are small. Pargo and cabrilla snappers round out the inshore opportunities.
The resorts are gearing up for the holidays, at full capacity, with lots of guests enjoying the serenity of the East Cape during holiday vacation time, and fewer people traveling to our hotels specifically for the fishing. This gives us an opportunity to pull some of our fleet from the water in shifts for regular maintenance, equipment upgrades, and hull paintings. We’re very excited for 2007, when we’ll be putting the biggest sportfishing fleet in Mexico back in the water at fulll throttle (78 boats), with many of our most popular boats as clean and freshly painted as they have ever been! Cummins Marine, our power plant provider, really likes us since we’ve been ordering so many new engines for our fleet. This means faster boats, cleaner-burning engines, and more fishing fun than ever before will be in store for our guests in 2007!
Fishing Report! 11-9-06
The craziness of October is now behind us. October traditionally is our busiest month of the year, with several large groups participating in ï¿½funï¿½ tournaments taking up large blocks of rooms. It wraps up a busy summer where we are fishing ï¿½wide openï¿½ every single day with the entire fleet on the water most days. We are so blessed with the tremendous bounty on the Sea of Cortez, and with the catch-and-release ethic entrenched with so many of our guests, the billfish populations remain incredibly consistent from season to season.
Striped marlin continue to lead the way with both numbers and tremendous average size. This has been a very good year for the stripers, and some days are still providing multiple hookups for some of the boats. More than a dozen striped marlin over 200# have been released in just the past few weeks, with many more from the 100-200# class also in the mix. Sailfish numbers have started to dwindle somewhat with cooling water temperatures, which are ranging from 74-80 degrees on our fishing grounds. Trolled lures are taking most of the fish, but with an abundance of mackeral, caballitos, and sardines available, a lot of bait-and-switch is going on with marlin and sails coming into the lure spread and then biting on a pitched live bait.
Several yellowfin tuna schools have been congregating in our waters as well, including a sizeable school just four miles north of Palmas de Cortez located just offshore from the ï¿½Tuna Slidesï¿½. Most of the fish are 10-30 pound size, but a few over 50 pounds also are being caught. Some good-sized bonita (blackfin) are mixed in, and the boats have scaled back to 20# test line for light tackle fun. Boats primarily are drift-fishing with live sardines and caballitos for most hookups.
The dorado fishing also has been very steady, and the fish are running big. A number have topped the scale at 60 pounds, but most are 30ï¿½40 pound fish. Dandy mahi mahi nonetheless! Trolled lures, fishing with live bait around flotsam, and sight-fishing for roaming fish are the productive methods for dorado right now.
Some smaller roosterfish, plenty of pargo (dogtooth snapper), and some cabrilla snapper round out the inshore fishing opportunities. The last blue marlin was caught and released a few days ago and estimated at 275 pounds. Black marlin have been absent this season, with just a few fish being spotted in the lure spreads during the past month.
Fishing Report! 10-5-06
Weï¿½ve taken a brief hiatus from the fishing reports in order to get caught up on some bigger issues in the past month! But weï¿½re happy to report: fishing is fantastic here on the East Cape. Leading the way are excellent numbers of both yellowfin tuna and dorado, with anglers catching numbers of fish in all directions out from the resorts. Dorado probably are leading the way, with a stretch in the past few weeks where boats were catching a dozen or more fish per day. Average size is good as well, with many fish 20-40 pounds and some of the biggest bulls pushing the scales at 60+ pounds! These are huge mahi mahi! Fish are susceptible to trolled lures as well as live sardines chummed and presented on bait hooks. A lot of fish are being caught just a few miles offshore.
Yellowfin tuna numbers are steady and strong. Fish are ranging from schoolie size 10-pounders up to some 80+ pound bruisers. Trolled cedar plugs, hootchies, and feathers, along with some live bait tactics, are catching most of the tuna. Most of the tuna schools are being located around 20 miles offshore.
Marlin action is down somewhat from the mid-summer boom. Striped marlin are still available, but not in consistent numbers, and from week to week the sailfish and stripers flipflop their catch rates. One week it seems the stripers are more prevalent; the following week the sailfish numbers exceed the marlin. A couple of blue marlin have started to show up, likely chasing tuna and other baitfish schools in our warm waters. Surface temperatures are in the mid-80ï¿½s right now. A few wahoo are around as well. Bait availability includes sardines, caballitos, and mackerel.
With excellent fishing for yellowfin tuna and dorado, and a few marlin thrown into the mix for good measure, itï¿½s a fine time to be in the East Cape!
Fishing Report! 8-31-06
With water temperatures from 80-90 degrees, and air temps from the mid-70’s at night to highs of close to 100 degrees during the daytime, it’s a glorious time to be fishing on the East Cape. Mild offshore breezes and perfectly tropical conditions are making for yet another wonderful summer season here in the Baja!
Overall, fishing is excellent. It’s hard to imagine, but catch rates for both yellowfin tuna and dorado have INCREASED in the past 7-10 days. We were already enjoying a phenomenal year for yellowfin numbers, and dorado have been exceptional as well, and now the fishing is even better. Huge schools of tuna are being located to the south off Cabo Pulmo and down to Los Frailes, 8-18 miles offshore. 20-50 pound fish are common, with boats experiencing multiple hookups on trolled hootchies and cedar plugs trolled through the school. Every rod pops at once! Occasional brutes in the 80-100 pound class are being caught as well. With so much action for numbers, no boats are venturing further into the Sea of Cortez to locate possible additional schools of tuna that might hold even bigger fish. We’re still waiting for those 200-pound-plus monsters!
Dorado hookups are excellent. Numerous fish are in the area, sometimes in small schools of 3-5 fish but more typically individual adult fish that are coming into the spread to attack marlin lures. 25-45 pound fish are common, with a few over 50# being reported. Pitching live mackerel to fish spotted on the surface remains a favorite technique for the dorado also.
Striped marlin numbers are consistent, but we’re starting to see signs of adult fish dispersing. Tagging studies prove that stripers from our region of the Pacific are wide roamers, covering many thousands of miles in the Pacific, and although thousands upon thousands of striped marlin congregate near the Baja Peninsula in spring to spawn, and some fish are around our area year-round, many adults disperse as well. Over 100 stripers were caught last week in the fleet, with the overwhelming majority of them being released. Many hundreds more were spotted on the surface tailing or jumping, or spit the hooks during the fight.
Sailfish numbers are down a little bit from earlier in August. We often don’t see huge numbers of sails in the East Cape anyway; this year the fish are around but not overwhelming. A few blue marlin are being reported, and no black marlin have been hooked up in the past several weeks.
Little inshore action is being reported, but virtually no boats are targeting roosterfish, snapper, sierra, or other inshore species since the tuna bite is so wide open, along with the strong numbers of big dorado and plenty of striped marlin around.
Fishing’s wide open, the action’s fast and furious, and the weather’s fantastic here on the East Cape!
Fishing Report! 8-26-06
One of the most consistent and memorable fishing years in recent memory continues here on the East Cape. Leading the way are the excellent number of yellowfin tuna, with huge schools of fish being located just a few miles offshore of Cabo Pulmo and points further south. Although the vast majority of fish are running 25-50 pounds, a number of fish over 100 pounds are being hooked as well. The action is steady, with most boats reporting multiple hookups throughout the morning (when the bite is a little better). Limits are common. The fish aren’t really showing a preference for one bait over another–the tuna are biting on live sardines and mackerel, as well as trolled lures, feathers, and of course cedar plugs. Quadruple and quintuple hookups are common when passing through the school.
Likewise, dorado fishing remains excellent. Average size has come down a bit in recent weeks, with most fish in the 20-40 pound range. Every so often, a bruiser of 40- or even 50-pounds plus is showing up, but not with the regularity of a few weeks ago. Again, the fish are being found close-in, and are susceptible to trolled lures as well as pitched live baits mackerel and sardines. Many fish are being spotted roaming the surface and are being sight-fished.
Billfish also are consistent. Leading the pack (as usual) are good numbers of striped marlin 100-180 pounds as well as quite a few sailfish in the 100-pound-plus class. Trolled lures and live mackerel are taking most fish. Blue marlin are running small, at around 250-350 pounds, and less than fifty fish are being contacted by the fleet per week, but hookup percentage is excellent. Black marlin remain a rare species in the area indeed. Two reported blacks were seen in lure spreads last week. Anglers are enjoying short morning runs to all fish species, with many of the blue water species being contacted just a few miles out from traditional shore markers such as Punta Arena, La Rivera, Las Barracas, and Los Frailes to the south, and Punta Pescadero, Punta Perico, and Cerralvo Island to the north. Straight east right into the Sea of Cortez is just as productive.
Hurricane Ileana is 350 miles to the southeast and spinning out into the Pacific to the west northwest. Seas remain flat calm except for light afternoon heat breezes kicking up a 1-3 foot chop, and no high seas from Ileana are expected within 150 miles of our area. Water temperatures range from 80-90 degrees. We remain rainfree and HOT! Lovely summertime fishing weather, awesome cool drinks, an incredible fishing are here on the East Cape!
Fishing Report! 8-7-06
First and foremost, an apology. We like to get these reports published at least every other week, but July has been one of those crazy months! Besides, fishing has been so incredibly consistent, the fishing report might start to sound like a broken record. Fishing has been nothing short of excellent on the East Cape this summer. Mid-July, we had some periodic heavy rains brought on by a tropical depression to our south and west. This low eventually spun off towards Hawaii, but we we brushed by several days of heavy seas and some downpours which made things slow down a bit.
Prior to the weather interruption all species were going gangbusters. Fishing has since picked up the pace again and appears to be just as good as before. Striped marlin continue to lead the way in billfish catches, with significant numbers of fish in the area. Boats are averaging several shots per day. Sailfish have cooled a bit, with frequency of sightings down around levels more typical of May or earlier. Blue marlin are appearing regularly, with about 50% hookup success ratio on these big bruisers. Black marlin are absent.
Dorado (mahi-mahi) fishing is excellent. Fish are numerous, and lots of big dorado are available. Some bulls 50-65 pounds are being caught, as well as numerous fish 20-35 pounds. Anglers are sight-fishing the mahi, spotting fish on the surface and pitching live bait to the fish. Since the rains, the number of fish hooking up on lures is lower than most anglers are accustomed to. It’s safe to say only about half the fish seen and baited actually take the hook. Live-baiting dorado normally produces a much higher ratio of hookups to fish seen. Some dorado also are taking smaller trolled marlin lures and feathers in the lure spread. In the past few days, the dorado seem to be gathering steam again and eating in a frenzy like they were in earlier July. It’s possible cooler water temps slowed fish metabolism a bit to put a hiccup in the hookup ratio.
Yellowfin tuna action has been steady and productive. Many, many schoolie fish are available 10-50 pounds, and lots of hookups on fish 50-90 pounds also are being reported. Some of the bigger tuna brought in this year are of the 150-pound class. Dandy yellowfin! August, September, and october usually bring the biggest yellowfin of the year to the Sea of Cortez, with some fish topping 300 pounds! Trolled cedar plugs and hootchies, as well as live sardines, are taking most of the fish. The average run to the tuna schools is 25 miles, while dorado, striped marlin, and other gamefish species are much closer in (2-17 miles). Some of the blue marlin are being seen on the fringes of the tuna schools.
Roosterfishing really has picked up after an abnormally slow June. Fish to 50 pounds are being taken in the surf up and down the beach from Punta Colorada, near Las Barracas to the south of Punta Arena (Lighthouse Point), and at Los Frailes. Jacks and various snapper species, especially red snapper, also are common inshore. Lastly, wahoo action is agreeably consistent, especially for boats running south of the resorts. Trolled Rapalas and Mauraders are fooling the wahoo.
Water temperatures range from 80-90 degrees in most of our fishing waters off the East Cape.
Fishing Report! 7-3-06
What a tremendous fishery we have here in the East Cape! Weï¿½re so blessed with consistency and a huge variety of species available to novice and expert anglers alike. Weï¿½re in the midst of our hot summertime temperatures, with a few days over 100 degrees, and the water temperature varies from 75-88 degrees depending on which direction you go and how the Sea of Cortez currents are swirling. Fishing action is excellent in all directions out from our hotels, with some good fishing being found literally on our doorsteps!
Right now, striped marlin are leading the billfish action by a wide margin. The fleet is averaging slightly less than 200 fish per week, with the vast majority being released by savvy anglers. A few are being lost to hooking mortality. Both ballyhoo for bait and trolled lures are taking fish. Sailfish are showing up close to shore, within a few miles of the hotels, as well. Blue marlin have started showing up, with most contact occurring 30 miles-plus offshore. This is the same region where the yellowfin tuna schools are being located, and despite the vast majority of the tuna being 10-40 pound schoolie size, the action is fast and furious. Hootchies, cedar plugs, and live bait (sardines) are catching most of the tuna. Weï¿½re expecting our bruiser summertime tuna (and fish 100-200 pounds) any day now. In addition to the stripers, blues, and sailfish, a swordfish and a spearfish (both relatively rare in our waters) were caught recently. The spearfish was hooked and released on ï¿½Miss Coronaï¿½ with Capt. Chuy and mate Pedro; the swordfish was a 200-pounder.
The dorado fishing is consistently good and seems to be getting better every day. Fish are being caught in numbers now, and the best news is the tremendous size available. Fish 50-pound-plus, and even a few topping 60 pounds, are starting to show up in angler catches. Tremendous mahi mahi action! Trolled lures and pitched baits are fooling the majority of the dorado.
A few mako sharks and wahoo are also being contacted offshore, while inshore action for roosterfish, sierra mackerel, and pargo, plus a few amberjack, and cool drinks in the hot sun are rounding out the fishing action on the East Cape. Our fishing just seems to be getting better every year in the Sea of Cortez!
Fishing Report! 5-31-06
The striped marlin fishing is absolutely incredible in the Sea of Cortez right now. The fish are everywhere, from points north to east to south, and are feeding aggressively. Boats are hooked up in all directions, and multiple hookups per boat are common. Many of the fish are being released, with only a few lost to hooking mortality. Catch-and-release for all billfish species is strongly encouraged at East Cape Resorts. Snap some photos, ask your captain and mate to bring the fish up on the transom for close-ups before release if you wish, but let ’em go!
The stripers are attacking trolled lures in the bait spreads and also being caught on pitched live baits–primarily mackerel–when spotted “tailing” on the surface. Some fish hitting light in the spread are also being caught via live bait.
Dorado and yellowfin tuna are plentiful to help fill your coolers. The dorado are nice-sized; some fish in excess of 40 pounds are starting to show up. Good fishing success for the mahi mahi is being reported to the North, and also to the South.
Straight east puts anglers in the heart of the primary tuna schools in the East Cape area right now. Although many of the fish are 10-40 pound size, some fish to 80 pounds are being caught as well. Best success is being had by the first boats arriving on the porpoise/tuna schools in the morning.
Quite a few roosterfish, small sierra mackerel, and cabrilla are available inshore, but the striped marlin fishing is so fantastic now, most boats are heading offshore for full days of nonstop fishing action for stripeys, with some dorado and tuna success mixed in. As an added bonus, numerous BIG sailfish are in the area, adding to the mixed bag of species available in the Sea of Cortez right now. The hot summer fishing season is in full swing on the East Cape!
Fishing Report! 4-30-06
An uncharacteristic mid-April lull in the billfishing success has run its course, and now the catch rates for sailfish and especially striped marlin have dramatically improved. There are literally thousands of striped marlin in the area, from the waters south to Gordo Banks all the way to Cerralvo Island to the North and the famed “Ocho-Ocho” (88) Reef. Numerous marlin are congregating off Punta Pescadero to the North and out from Punta Arena to the South and east. Some marlin are even being spotted just 3-4 miles offshore in the mornings as boats are en route to the fishing grounds. Multiple hookups are being reported.
Speculation abounds as to the reason for the drop-off in overall marlin catch rates for about ten days in April. Usually the fish are aggressively feeding daily in preparation for the spawn and catching 4-8 stripers per day is the norm. During the full moon phase in April, huge amounts of squid were in the waters off the East Cape, and there was a noticeable absence of mackerel baitfish. Although boats were seeing many marlin in a day’s fishing, most fish were turning up their noses at both trolled lures and rigged ballyhoo tossed as dead bait to marlin spotted on the surface. Anglers also reported seeing many more marlin during the morning hours each day versus afternoons. Boats hooking and releasing three marlin in a day were considered lucky. Most boats presented baits to perhaps a dozen or more marlin, and some days as many as 20-30 fish, and hooked just one or two. What’s more, marlin that did bite on trolled lures invariably spit the hooks after just a few jumps. Whereas a 50% catch rate on lures is considered good, perhaps 9 out of 10 stripers were throwing the hooks. At least there was plenty of action on billfish regardless!
It’s agreed that the marlin were gorging on squid under the full moon and hence plump full during the day when anglers saw fish. Unavailability of live mackerel for bait added to hookup woes. Since that mid-April lull, however, marlin and sailfish action has picked up considerably. 4-8 releases per day–more akin to the East Cape’s usual fishing success–are now common. Dorado (mahi mahi) fishing remains very consistent as well, and the fish are big, ranging in size from 25-40 pounds. Every day it seems more dorado are in the area.
Tuna fishing, which was excellent and March and early April but died off during the April moon phase, has returned, with action reported 22-26 miles offshore and schools of yellowfin ranging in size from 15-65 pounds. Trolled lures, hootchies, and cedar plugs are taking most of the fish.
Roosterfish have started showing up in the surf off Punta Colorada and La Rivera to the South, all the way down past Las Barracas to Los Frailes. Punta Perico to the North also has a wide-ranging school of roosters averaging 25 pounds. Fly anglers were taking spooky fish at Punta Colorada in mid-April, and now greater numbers of fish are in the area and biting on flies and bait. As usual, morning fishing for the roosters has been most productive. Also inshore, many (delicious!) sierra mackerel are available right in front of La Rivera, and are especially susceptible to trolled Rapalas. There are a few jack crevalle in the area, as well as plenty of snapper species.
73-5 degree surface temperatures are the norm throughout the Sea of Cortez in our area.
The outrigger flags are flying on the East Cape Resorts fleet, designating the many fish being caught. Blue and red flags for catch-and-release billfish, yellow for dorado, white for tuna, and green for roosterfish are all being flown. It’s a fine time to find yourself on Baja’s East Cape, releasing billfish and filling your cooler with delicious table fare like the dorado, tuna, and sierra. Come on down!
Fishing Report! 4-5-06
Great fishing is here on the East Cape. Current conditions are ideal for striped marlin, and both dorado and yellowfin tuna also are numerous. Anglers are getting 4-10 shots at stripers on most days, and plenty of dorado 15-35 pounds and yellowfin tuna 15-75 pounds are available.
73-74 degree water has brought thousands of striped marlin into the southern Sea of Cortez and the billfish are congregating in huge numbers. Many boats are experiencing multiple hookups. Stripers show a marked preference for this mid-70 degree water, and they have arrived in our area to spawn. Additionally, huge amounts of bait are in the areaï¿½from mackerel to sardines to squid to flying fish. Marlin are being contacted in all directions out from the resortsï¿½to the north, to the east, and to the south. Some boats are spotting marlin only 8 miles out and putting lines in, although the most consistent fishing still is 16-20 miles out for marlin. As a bonus, quite a few big sailfish are in the area, with fish averaging 110-120 pounds. Usually the sailfish donï¿½t show up in big numbers until May.
We’re very excited about the ingrained catch-and-release ethic at our resorts. Very few guests choose to kill marlin, and our captains certainly discourage it. We do lose a few to hooking mortality, but in the past few weeks we are seeing a 12-to-1 up to 15-to-1 release/mortality ratio. The few fish we are losing are bleeding heavily at boatside and the captains have to make the call to take those fish. Remember that bleeding marlin often drop to depths of 100 meters or so very quickly, where the water pressure stems blood flow and allows the fish to recover, so unless the gills are badly damaged it’s worth the effort to release the fish. The reason we have so many marlin is because of catch-and-release! Keep the dorado and tuna, which make far better table fare anyway. Instead of posing for a photo with a dead fish hanging on the chain, instead ask the captain to pull the fish up on the transom for a quick photo before release!
Weï¿½ve had an above-average yellowfin tuna bite throughout the month of March. Fish are of good size, from 15-75 pounds and running in huge schools along with the porpoises 42 miles out. The average tuna is about 30 pounds. Some striped marlin and dorado, along with a few sailfish, are in the same area as the tuna.
Dorado fishing has been excellent. Some boats targeting the mahi-mahi exclusively are hooking up with ten or more fish per day. The average catch is five dorado. Bigger dorado are offshore, in the 25-35 pound range, while closer to shore to the south, and to the north near Punta Pescadero, the mahi are 10-25 pounds.
Inshore fishing remains consistent also. Plenty of snapper species and some sierra mackerel are inshore, as well as some pargo and grouper from the reefs. Roosterfish have started to show up along the beaches of Las Barracas and near La Rivera. A few jack crevalle were seen last week.
Thousands of porpoises are in the Sea of Cortez, and the gray and humpback whales are migrating through our waters as well.
With daytime temps in the 90ï¿½s and calm seas, the hot fishing the East Cape is famous for has arrived. Striped marlin, sailfish, tuna, and dorado are offering consistent and rewarding fishing opportunities now; bigger tuna, blue marlin, and black marlin won’t be far behind.
Fishing Report! 3-23-06
The fishing on Baja’s East Cape has really cranked up in the past couple of weeks. Although the weather has been a little goofy, just like in the U.S., overall conditions are ideal. We’ve been experiencing a few days of north winds and cooler air temperatures–70 degrees–along with fingers of cooler northern Gulf of California waters also at about 70 degrees. This is keeping many of the pelagic gamefish to the south of the resorts, almost as if the water temperature gradients are having a damming effect.
It’s about a 25-mile run south to find 73 degree water, and in this area the fish are congregating in huge numbers. Two weeks ago the run was closer to 40 miles. However, the extra drive time is well worth it, since, in the words of our captains, they are finding “mucho marlin royalos y dorado.” Although this translates to “a lot of striped marlin and dorado,” the general reaction from our guests has been “I can’t believe how many fish I saw, there must have been a thousand marlin in just one area!!” The flags tell the tales. Because our boats hoist a variety of flags on the outriggers at day’s end to highlight their catches, the results are obvious. Boats are catching and releasing 4-10 striped marlin per day when focusing on billfish; other boats targeting dorado and tuna are flying 2-10 flags each and bringing in coolers worth of tasty fillets. Each billfish caught is designated a blue flag, and each release a triangular red/white flag, so the marlin boats are flying 8-20 flags apiece–spectacular stuff. The yellow dorado flags and white tuna flags on other boats boasted similar fishing feats.
We’re very excited about the ingrained catch-and-release ethic at our resorts. Very few guests choose to kill marlin, and our captains certainly discourage it. We do lose a few to hooking mortality, but in the past few weeks we are seeing a 12-to-1 up to 15-to-1 release/mortality ratio. The few fish we are losing are bleeding heavily at boatside and the captains have to make the call to take those fish. Remember that bleeding marlin often drop to depths of 100 meters or so very quickly, where the water pressure stems blood flow and allows the fish to recover, so unless the gills are badly damaged it’s worth the effort to release the fish. The reason we have so many marlin is because of catch-and-release! Keep the dorado and tuna, which make far better table fare anyway. Instead of posing for a photo with a dead fish hanging on the chain, instead ask the captain to pull the fish up on the transom for a quick photo befoore release!
Congratulations go out to the Kohlhases from Virginia, Minnesota, first-time visitors to the Baja, who fished on “Don Antonio” and racked up seven striped marlin and one big sailfish on their first-ever big game fishing trip. Great day, folks, you’re now spoiled for life! Wisconsinite Dave Gellatly successfully landed a 90# (yes, NINETY) pound wahoo, a feat made especially impressive since the crew was trolling for marlin hence the lures had no wire leaders attached. And how about Mark Arnesen, Ted Krause, and Steve Soukup, Minnesotans fishing on “El Borracho,” who managed an exciting quadruple hookup of two 40# yellowfin tuna, one 35# dorado, and a 125# striped marlin when trolling through a huge yellowfin tuna school, and successfully landed all four fish (and three species) at the same time!
Tuna fishing has been very consistent in March. The best part is the nice average-size, with fish primarily in the 25-50 pound range. A few 60-pound-plus fish have been caught. Likewise the dorado, which are appearing more and more numerous every day, ranging in size from 20-40 pounds.
Inshore fishing is getting neglected because of the offshore bite, but anglers plying the waters near Punta Pescadero and the Tuna Slides to the North, as well as the region to the South known as Las Barracas, are finding plentiful snapper species, including some dogtooths. A few roosterfish have been reported in the surf near Punta Arena, but have not arrived in catchable numbers as of yet.
Thousands of porpoises are in the Sea of Cortez, and the gray and humpback whales are passing through as well. A significant amount of bait is present, from sardines to mackerel to flying fish to squid.
With daytime temps breaking 85 degrees and calming seas, the hot fishing the East Cape is famous for has arrived. Striped marlin, sailfish, tuna, and dorado are prevalent; bigger tuna, blue marlin, and black marlin won’t be far behind. It’s a fine time to experience Baja’s East Cape!
Fishing Report! 3-1-06
Several days of steady winds kept the windsurfers delighted, but most of the anglers off the water and by the pool for a few days last week. However, all in all, fishing has been very consistent on the East Cape in the past few weeks. Now the weather is beautiful and once again anglers are enjoying the bounty of the Sea of Cortez.
A large school of tuna, consisting of many fish from 30-70 pounds, is roaming 25-32 miles straight east of the resorts. Although a long run to this school, anglers are finding their efforts well-rewarded with some nice-sized yellowfin. Both cedar plugs and trolling heads are taking fish when trolled right through the school. By mid-day the bite is dropping off and boats are switching gears and searching for striped marlin, a species seemingly scattered far and wide as incoming fish prepare for the spring spawn. Best luck for billfish is to the South, especially in the area north of Gordo Banks. A good bite for stripers 6-10 miles out from Punta Arena was blown away by the North winds, but the fish won’t be long to return…the seamounts off the Point are a renowned spot for congregating schools of marlin gorging on mackerel and preparing to spawn.
Dorado are quite common with fish from 15-35 pounds primarily being taken. Water temperatures vary but 73 degrees seems to be the prevalent surface temp in most of the region’s waters, with a warmer finger curling around the Cape to the South, while cooler waters near 70 degrees are dominating to the north of the Bay of the Palms. Baitfish are plentiful.
The inshore bite seems to be taking a break, with the significant numbers of sierra mackerel that were available near Punta Colorada and La Rivera in January and February vanishing in the past week (uncharacteristically). Maybe due to the wind? A few cabrilla and other snapper species are rounding out the inshore fishing opportunities.
Fishing Report! 1-31-06
Despite January being our traditionally slowest month of the year, fishing has been very consistent on the East Cape. The resorts are always very quiet in January as we retool for the coming year and many of our guests recover from the holidays. The few folks who have been going fishing in the past couple of weeks have enjoyed good catches of dorado, yellowfin tuna, and sierra mackerel, with a few striped marlin thrown in for good measure. We had one week of stiff north winds stirring up the Sea of Cortez and providing most guests a good excuse to lay by the pool all day as opposed to fishing. The 9-hole, par three, chip-and-putt golf course at Palmas de Cortez got some good use, as did Spa Delfin for people wanting some pampering. The beers were cold and the tequila flavorful.
Dorado are averaging 15-25 pounds and are taking trolled lures primarily. Boats heading north enjoyed the best success. The main tuna school is hunkered down in the standard counterclockwise rotation around 22-25 miles offshore. There are excellent numbers of fish, considering January is usually our “off month” for yellowfin, and anglers are enjoying catching fish ranging in size from 10-50 pounds, with many more fish on the smaller end of that range. Inshore, sierra mackerel are numerous and aggressive. One charter caught 15 fish from 6-12 pounds in one morning of fishing near Punta Colorada. Snapper also are prevalent inshore. A number of striped marlin were caught and released in the past few weeks as well. Adult fish are in the area, an indication that the stripeys are en route for the annual spring spawn. Everybody is gearing up for the impending fishing frenzy!
Fishing Report! 1-3-06
The holiday season is wrapping up here on the East Cape. As usual, the hotels were full around Christmastime and also during the New Year’s week, although most guests were just relaxing and enjoying the serenity of the East Cape, rather than fishing. Only a handful of boats have been heading out fishing on a daily basis, although fishing remains very good. The hoards of dorado remain, with fish averaging15-30 pounds, with some bigger ones mixed in.
Yellowfin tuna are still schooled offshore, with a few boats making the run for these fish. Sizes are 10-50 pounds primarily.
Striped marlin are common; boats are finding numbers of fish to the north of Punta Pescadero, which also coincides with the most consistent dorado fishing. A few boats heading south are also contacting fish. A few sailfish still are in the area.
Inshore, sierra mackerel and snappers are numerous. Wahoo reports are coming from near the Gordo Banks to the south as well.
Expect a more comprehensive fishing report in a few weeks as anglers get out on the Sea of Cortez now that the holiday season is over.