East Cape Fishing Report! 12/1/10
For this month’s fishing report, we’ll focus on some specific numbers that illustrate the AMAZING fishery we are blessed with here in East Cape waters, as well as the ongoing benefits of ‘catch-and-release’ for topline predators such as marlin and sailfish. Most of the fish we target in the Sea of Cortez are adult, spawning fish in the 6-10 year age range, and are quite literally the future of the big game fishery. When loads of dorado, yellowfin tuna, and wahoo can be caught for delicious table fare, it’s better to let the billfish swim.
Here are some stats from recent ‘fun’ tournaments organized by repeat guests (with 100% release policy on all billfish), to add more thrills to their East Cape vacations:
East Cape Classic (37 boats, three days’ fishing): 134 sailfish, 72 striped marlin, 19 blue marlin, and one black marlin;
Dove Island Picklefest (6 boats, 3 days): 128 billfish;
Dark of the Moon (5 boats, 2 days): 50 sailfish, 26 striped marlin, 46 dorado, 11 tuna;
Salt Patrol (20 boats, 3 days): NEW ALL-TIME RECORD for 20 or fewer boats fishing out of our hotels in a tournament!! 221 sailfish, 112 striped marlin, 4 blue marlin, and one black marlin.
Suffice it to say, if you seek great big game fishing, East Cape Resorts is the place to be. Hope to see you down our way soon for some fishing and relaxation!
East Cape Fishing Report! 11/1/10
The remarkable stretch of amazing and excellent fishing we have enjoyed on the East Cape this year continues. Leading the way in the past month was an incredible run on big blue marlin, enhanced by hot action for striped marlin and some huge Pacific sailfish averaging 100 pounds.
Many blue marlin were caught and released in the 250-500 pound range by anglers in our fleet. Down in Cabo, the annual Bisbee’s Black & Blue Marlin Tournament had some monster fish caught, as well as some real brutes that shed the hooks during the protracted battles. Fish to 700 pounds were on the hook, and a spectacular 890 pound blue marlin that would have secured the top cash prize of $2.7 million was bumped from the winner’s circle due to the boat returning to the scales late by eight minutes.
In a mini ‘fun’ tournament enjoyed by some of our Hotel Palmas de Cortez guests, six boats tallied 128 billfish caught and released in three fishing days! The mixed bag of sailfish and striped marlin kept the anglers busy, and numerous dorado, yellowfin tuna, and wahoo were included in catches as well. The best individual boat caught and released seventeen sailfish in one day.
Dorado fishing was up and down all month, but showed a resurgence in the past week with some huge bulls to 55 pounds being weighed. Some boats were catching as many as six of these big dorado in addition to releasing 6-10 billfish per day. Talk about hot fishing!
Angling for yellowfin tuna continues to be remarkable as well. As absence of live bait to the south has been confining our fleet to the north fishing grounds, with two key areas holding most fish. The typical fishing day involves the fleet running north to Ensenada for buckets-full of sardines to add to the live mackerel and dead ballyhoo available from bait boats adjacent to our hotels. These baits work as pitched baits for the billfish, and the sardines are for chumming dorado, tuna, and even more billfish that are invariably following hooked fish looking for morsels. Boats also are catching and bridle-rigging small live bonitos for billfish and big dorado.
Punta Pescadero offers anglers shots at 40-60 pound wahoo as well as roosterfish to 20 pounds. Further north, the 88 Reef (Ocho-Ocho) is congregating numbers of sailfish, striped marlin, dorado, and schools of tuna. Multiple hookups on sailfish are common. Last week, a huge school of tuna with fish ranging from football-size up to 150 pounds was circulating. Boats hooked numerous 50-70 pound tuna and had shots at the bigger brutes. Thousands of porpoises and seabirds added to the feeding frenzy taking place on the surface.
The continued effects of an El Nino weather year are making 2010 a fishing year to remember here on the East Cape. Sea surface temps in the mid-80’s, and daytime highs in the low 90’s, are making for some HOT fishing. Make plans to experience Baja’s East Cape soon!
East Cape Fishing Report! 9/30/10
Fishing continues to be tremendous here on the East Cape as we turn the page and enter one of our most popular and high-demand months of the year’October. While we typically see few ‘events’ each year in terms of hurricanes or tropical storms, it seems our peak season has passed without any disruptions. We did have a very minor storm (35-45 mph winds) graze us two weeks ago, interrupting our fishing rhythm for a single day, and now we are out of the warning zone for another year!
It really doesn’t matter what species you target right now’fishing is excellent for most of our available gamefish species. In the past few weeks, blue marlin catches have actually matched the numbers of striped marlin, which is quite remarkable. While all billfish are apex predators, it’s unusual to see so many nice blues around, and actually experience fishing for blue marlin that tops that of striped marlin or sailfish. Many of the blues are awesome size as well, with many fish being reported from 250-550 pounds. Many of these topline predators are being released by our angling guests’good job!
The yellowfin tuna bite continues to be off the charts in terms of both overall numbers and average size. Our fleet is averaging over 600 tunas boated per week right now, and while many of the fish are football-size, we are also seeing numerous specimens exceeding 100 pounds. Fish over 200 pounds continue to appear also. The East Cape is one of the world’s finest destinations for multi-species big game fishing, but we like to think our yellowfin fishing is second-to-none.
Even more remarkable is how close the fishing is to our hotels. Some of the best fishing is just a few miles offshore, with the seamounts out from Punta Colorada really producing a lot of fish. Numerous distinct schools are scattered far and wide across our fishing area, so it really doesn’t matter which way you point the boat’you’ll catch fish.
‘Dorado catching’ is also excellent. Let’s call it ‘catching’ instead of ‘fishing’, since the mahi mahi action is so wide open right now. As with the tuna, fish across the size spectrum are being hooked, with many nice bulls of 30-40 pounds available. Tremendous stuff! Fresh fish is most definitely on the menu at our hotel bars right now! Over 300 dorado per week are being caught by anglers fishing with our crews.
The list continues: loads of wahoo, pompano, cabrilla, amberjack, some beautiful cubera snapper, lots of triggerfish, nice numbers of roosterfish, and even some black marlin are rounding out angler action here on the East Cape.
If you’ve not been down our way recently, or are considering a visit to Baja’s East Cape for the first time, you owe it to yourself to get down this way!
East Cape Fishing Report! 8/31/10
Fishing is running at full throttle right now on the East Cape. Virtually all of the big gamefish species are available for anglers to pursue. Just in the past two weeks we’ve had blue marlin caught approaching 600 pounds, yellowfin tuna across all size ranges with many fish exceeding 100 pounds and the largest at 246 pounds, and boatloads of huge bull dorado 35-45 pounds with the biggest weighed at 62 pounds. Most of our charter boats are limiting out on tuna with fish of above-average size. Nice wahoo averaging 40-50 pounds also are in abundance, with lots of nice striped marlin and big Pacific sailfish rounding out the offshore bite. With our sea surface temperatures in the high 80’s, lots of the offshore action is actually happening close to shore right now. Some of the tuna schools are only 3-6 miles out, with some of the nicest fish about ten miles out from Punta Arena. The most consistent blue marlin action has been 6-12 miles straight east of Punta Pescadero and 8-12 miles offshore from Cabo Pulmo on the perimeter of the canyons.
Inshore, roosterfish are going crazy with lots of 50-60 pound fish available; a monster 88-pounder was weighed last week. Big jack crevalle averaging 30 pounds, and abundant 15-20# pargo in similar sizes ranges also are being caught. A giant 40-pound dogtooth snapper was brought to the docks recently, among the biggest we’ve ever seen from these waters.
The tuna action has been going strong for three months with virtually no let-up. A number of distinct schools are available, ranging across our fishing grounds, with some of the larger specimens coming from the edge of our fleet’s range. Anglers are using chunk squid to catch many fish, but trolled hootchies, cedar plugs, and feathers, as well as ballyhoo and sardines, also catch fish.
The best fishing of the year is happening right now on Baja’s East Cape!
East Cape Fishing Report! 8/20/10
Fishing is running at full throttle right now on the East Cape. Virtually all of the big gamefish species are available for anglers to pursue. Just in the past two weeks we’ve had blue marlin caught approaching 600 pounds, yellowfin tuna across all size ranges with many fish exceeding 100 pounds and the largest at 246 pounds, and boatloads of huge bull dorado 40-50 pounds with the biggest weighed at 62 pounds. Nice wahoo averaging 40-50 pounds also are in abundance, with lots of nice striped marlin and big Pacific sailfish rounding out the offshore bite. Inshore, roosterfish are going crazy with lots of 50-60 pound fish available; a monster 88-pounder was weighed last week. Big jack crevalle averaging 30 pounds, and pargo in similar sizes ranges also are being caught.
If you like big fish, and lots of variety and nonstop action, pack a bag and get down to the East Cape for an awesome fishing vacation! There are some super deals on airfares right now.
East Cape Fishing Report! 7/31/10
Fantastic action for yellowfin tuna continues to lead the way in terms of our fishing reports. Many fish in the 50-100 pound class are coming to the docks daily, along with occasional bruisers of 150-200+ pounds. The action has been steady now for almost two months. Many schools are available, ranging across our fishing grounds, with some of the larger specimens coming from the edge of our fleet’s range. Anglers are using chunk squid to catch many fish, but trolled hootchies, cedar plugs, and feathers, as well as ballyhoo and sardines, also catch fish.
Big blue marlin having been showing up consistently. The average weight of the larger blues has been in the 400-pound range, and plenty of 200-300 pound fish also are swimming in East Cape waters. Additionally, numerous sailfish are in the area, and plenty of striped marlin action is keeping anglers busy when they aren’t fighting multiple hookups in the tuna schools. Trolled lures and ballyhoo are hooking the billfish.
Dorado action remains consistent, with ongoing variations in the average size of the fish. Some days produce many big bulls in the 35-45 pound range, and others we see average catches in the 15-20 pound range. These size fluctuations are normal when the water is so warm. The top three dorado weighed in the annual Dorado Shootout tournament at the Hotels on July 17th were 53.3, 50.1, and 49.1 pounds. Plenty of action for mahi mahi is keeping our anglers smiling!
Inshore, large roosterfish remain abundant, and big jack crevalle and pargo also are mixed into catches. Nice wahoo averaging 50 pounds also are being hooked on Rapalas.
Sea surface temperatures are in the mid- to high-80 degree range, and plenty of squid, ballyhoo, sardines, and jurelito are available for bait.
Fishing is awesome right now on the East Cape!
East Cape Fishing Report! 5/28/10
The quality of the overall fishing and the variety of species has spiked dramatically in the past two weeks! Big numbers of striped marlin have invaded the Sea of Cortez and our East Cape fishing grounds, with many boats in our fleet that are targeting marlin specifically catching and releasing as many as 6-8 fish per day. The stripers are ranging from 120-200 pounds and are biting on both trolled marlin lures as well as live bait. Plenty of live mackerel are available for bait.
The best news so far of the late Spring is the arrival of numbers of tuna as well as some bigger bruisers in the school. The biggest yellowfin hooked so far topped the scales at 187 pounds. This is a great fish for so early in the peak season for tuna. The fish hit a trolled cedar plug and managed to snap the angler’s rod during the fight! Numbers of 15-35# tuna also are being caught, with some boats enjoying limits. Several distinct schools are being contacted by our skilled captains’one major school is 40-50 miles offshore, while another is only 20 miles out. Easy access for great yellowfin tuna fishing! Trolling hootchies and cedar plugs through the schools is catching tuna.
Roosterfish have really accelerated in the past few weeks. Numerous 20-35 pound fish are being caught and released inshore, and some 50-pound class roosters have also been giving anglers quite a battle. A current absence of sardines for live bait is adding to the challenge of catching roosters in great numbers.
Dorado fishing has been steady but not spectacular. 15-35 pound do-do are in the mix, and a lone fish exceeding the whopping 50-pound mark was brought in recently. Trolled marlin lures are triggering most of the dorado strikes for anglers fishing striped marlin, and some fish are being spotted on the surface and being caught on live bait, just like many of the marlin.
Additional offshore action is being delivered by wahoo and a few blue marlin that are showing up in angler catches this week; inshore, opportunities exist for cabrilla, pompano, and some nice-sized pargo.
Rounding out the catch are an abnormally high number of hammerhead and mako sharks, species that we usually see only infrequently in the East Cape.
As you can see from this fishing report, fishing action has really exploded in the Sea of Cortez! It’s an excellent time to visit the East Cape to enjoy so awesome multi-species action. Sea surface temperatures have already zipped past 80 degrees, and some of our fishing grounds are boasting 83 degree water temps. With daytime highs of 90, and evening breezes cooling onshore to the low 70’s, it’s a fantastic time to sip a cool drink down our way!
East Cape Fishing Report! 4/30/10
Fishing is great here on the East Cape! Striped marlin and sailfish are available for anglers heading offshore, and some dorado are mixed in as well, although not yet approaching peak summer size and numbers. Anglers are encountering some packs of roving fish, especially schools of sailfish, so multiple hookups are not uncommon. Likewise for the stripers, which are feeding heavily in preparation for the spawn. Trolled marlin lures and live bait presentations are competing for the attention of the fish with deepwater schools of calamari. In addition to these bite-size squid that keep the marlin fat and happy, some Humboldt Squid still remain in our East Cape waters. These four-footers are fun to catch and make for a good chunk bait.
Inshore angling has really picked up. The best action has been to the north near Punta Pescadero, Punta Perico, and Bahia de Los Muertos, where anglers can find commercial bait Pangas selling sardines. Hoards of sierra mackerel are being caught on light tackle, a species that makes delicious table fare. Numbers of juvenile roosterfish also are being caught, but some much larger specimens are available, with some fish topping 40 pounds. We typically don’t see these big bruiser roosters until mid-to-late May, so El Nino really has accelerated the angling timetable so far in 2010. Sea surface temperatures in most of our fishing grounds are already in the 74-78 degree range. Cabrilla and pargo also have been caught in good numbers by inshore anglers.
Another benefit to the above-average water temps for this time of year is an early resurgence of the yellowfin tuna bite. Last year from July to early November we had a gangbusters bite for giant yellowfin (many 100-200 pound fish and some topping 300#), and we’re hoping for another hot bite in 2010 to follow. Currently, tuna from 15-25 pounds are leading the catch reports, but within the schools of porpoises and tuna, some of our captains are seeing some much larger specimens blasting bait on the surface, so anyday now we should start seeing 50-pound plus yellowfin showing up in catches. This is always a good thing!
Rounding out the fishing report are a few mako sharks caught on live bait, and one nice hammerhead shark. The 2010 fishing season is in full swing here on the East Cape!
East Cape Fishing Report! 3/30/10
After mostly calm seas for the first two weeks of March, we had some windy days later in the month that meant fewer boats on the water. Despite that, striped marlin fishing season has begun in earnest here on the East Cape. Lots of marlin are in Sea of Cortez waters, with more fish arriving daily. After a good burst of both dorado and yellowfin tuna numbers early in March, both species tapered for the middle weeks. In the past few days, dorado fishing has seen a resurgence. The dorado are averaging 15-20 pounds. The biggest yellowfin tuna thus far have been in the 60-pound range, which are some dandy ahi for so early in the season! After our awesome tuna bite last fall, with numerous 100-200 pound fish and some even exceeding 300 pounds, seeing yellowfin of 60-pounds-plus in March certainly bodes well for the entire 2010 tuna fishing season.
Striped marlin continue to lead the way, with most boats catching and releasing 1-3 fish per day, with a few sailfish mixed in. Fish are striking trolled marlin lures as well as being hooked on dead ballyhoo and live mackerel. Numerous marlin are seen resting (on calm days) or tailing the wave crests (when breezy) on the surface.
Dorado fishing has picked up, and a few wahoo are starting to show up in catches. Inshore, sierra mackerel fishing is excellent, and a few pargo and cabrilla are being caught as well.
Sea surface temperatures are 71-73 to the north and straight east, with warmer temps of 74-75 degrees to the south. The Spring fishing season is in full swing, and it’s a great time to find yourself on the East Cape!
East Cape Fishing Report! 3/1/10
Fishing has started to ramp up bigtime here on the East Cape! With water temperatures to the east and north running 71-73 degrees, and our fishing grounds to the south reporting sea surface temps as high as 77 degrees, fishing is really cranking up!
The striped marlin have begun their annual Spring migration to the Sea of Cortez in preparation for the spawn. They are feeding heavily on mackerel as well as squid. Good reports are coming from boats trolling artificial lures as well using bait-n-switch techniques with mackerel. With the preferred water temps for stripers in the 74-76 degree range, we are on the verge of our annual season for one of the hottest striped marlin bites in the world!
Dorado also are numerous. Typical of this time of year, the fish are running 10-25 pounds and are being caught on trolled hootchies and feathers as well as live bait.
Inshore, hoards of sierra mackerel are along the entire coastline from Buena Vista to the lighthouse, and points further south. Sardines and trolled Rapala #11 Magnums and also X-Raps are catching most of the sierra. This species makes for delicious table fare.
With the primary fishing season kick-starting, it’s a great time to be planning your trip to Baja’s East Cape!