Fish Report

BY: GARY GRAHAM

Goodbye, August and hello, September!

fishkiller2101.jpgBaja Sur is anticipating an exciting fall fishing season filled with big game tournaments that will dominate the fishing scene though November and will feature catches that will exceed hundreds of pounds. Let the spectacle begin! Hopefully, the weather gods will be kinder to us this year. Gary Graham, gary@garycgraham.com

Cabo San Lucas

If you are looking for billfish, the gang’s all here — blue, black, striped marlin and sailfish; although, not entirely unexpected with the recent influx of yellowfin tuna — one of the favorite foods of billfish. The yellowfin are ranging from football-sized to grandes exceeding several hundred pounds, real crowd pleasers. However, many anglers are satisfied with the smaller variety — those that don’t turn a “fun day” into a “workday.”

There are still a few wahoo showing up at the cleaning tables and later at local restaurants ready and waiting to prepare those thick steaks into a memorable meal.

Some of the fleet has been targeting sharks with good results if you are interested. Inshore the catch has included skipjack, white bonito and plenty of smaller dorado to 15 pounds.

Good weather and excellent sea conditions have allowed the fleet to fish comfortably on either side of the peninsula.

Cabo Climate: Mostly very hot; sunny days with just a few passing clouds. Air temps varied from 78 nights to 96 daytime highs and a 66% humidity level.

Sea Conditions: Sea temps are warm and ranged from 85 to 88 on the Pacific side and escalated from 89 to 90 from Cabo Falso to Los Frailes on the Sea of Cortez side.

San Jose

Bait supplies near the Marina consisted of sardina and caballito. Fishing offshore grounds there have been chihuil, bolito, skipjack and small-sized yellowfin tuna, all of which can be used for targeting larger gamefish. Strips of giant squid found in some of the local super markets also remained an option.

Yellowfin tuna have been found in a wide range of sizes, from 5 pounds to over 300 pounds. Best chances for the largest yellowfin tuna have been mainly around the Gordo Banks — no big numbers, but this is the best it has been so far this summer, while Iman Bank has produced greater numbers of fish in the football- to 60-pound size. This is also where dorado action came alive recently — mostly small to 15 pounds.

Wahoo action has lit up with a hot spot just to the north of Punta Gorda. Several anglers reported having up to a half-dozen solid wahoo strikes while trolling Rapalas and other favored lures — sizes were in the 20- to 40-pound class. The bite was not only early in the morning, but some days the best action was encountered late in the morning as well.

Anglers found mixed success off the bottom where there were dogtooth up to 55 pounds landed, amberjack to 50 pounds, a few yellowtail to 35 pounds, grouper to 40 pounds, barred pargo to 15 pounds, along with quality yellow snapper, surgeonfish and rainbow runner as well … a nice option if the surface isn’t producing.

Chances for an offshore grand slam are good now with sailfish, striped, blue and black marlin all being hooked into on any given day.

East Cape

August finishes with excellent weather, calm seas and a lot of variety. The water temps seem to have stabilized in the high 80s, a little cooler than a month ago. Good bait on offer — caballito, ballyhoo and dead sardina by the bag.

A solid marlin bite, blues were mostly taken off La Ribera with a few fish reported to the north. Stripers and sails were abundant. Most blues are on plastic and most stripers are on caballito.

The yellowfin tuna bite continues on dead sardina. Good fish up to 50 pounds mostly down off Vinorama. Another bite off La Ribera produced smaller fish that mostly hit hootchies.

Dorado are around in schools in different areas from the Lighthouse to La Ribera. One flyfisher landed a dorado on a fly from the beach near the Lighthouse.

The wahoo are back with most being mixed in with the tuna and again they are south. Others were near Punta Colorada.

The roosterfish continue to be elusive inshore. However, there are very big fish in deeper, cooler water slightly farther offshore.

The bottom fishing is exceptional. Red huachinango, barred pargo, amberjacks, cabrilla, pompano and — believe it or not, yellowtail!!!

La Paz

The La Paz fleet is reporting solid dorado fishing with fish from 5- to 25-pounds. If you hit the spot, they are everywhere. The larger ones are around, but the kids are so thick and hungry, they don’t give the bigger ones a chance to get the baits.

As one of our guys told us, “We released ten before we got a larger one we wanted to keep; it’s sometimes hard to release the small ones because they swallow the baits and then the hooks are hard to get out.”

There are some huge bonito ripping things up as well. These fish fight like 30-pounders although 12 pounds is about the true size. Same with the big jack crevalle schools near the beaches, along with some smaller roosters.

Several striped marlin were hooked and lost; they bit light lines with live baits meant for dorado.

Meanwhile at Los Arenas, roosterfish are the rock star — big roosters in the area if you’ve ever wanted to nail one of these big exotic fish. They are almost all trophy-sized, close and still willing to hit a bait. Rarely are we getting any weighing under 30 pounds and most are 40- to 60-pounders. All are routinely released.

Good to see a few more dorado and other species popping up as well. Bonito, jack crevalle and snapper rounded out the fishing.

Cabo San Lucas

Tracy Ehrenberg www.piscessportfishing.com

Larry Edwards www.cortezcharters.com

San Jose del Cabo

Gordo Bank Pangas www.gordobanks.com

East Cape

Rancho Leonero Hotel www.rancholeonero.com

Jen Wren Sportfishing www.thejenwren.com

East Cape Tackle Cindy Kirkwood, www.eastcapetackle.com

La Paz

Jonathan Roldan’s Tailhunter International www.tailhunter-international.com