Fish Report

September 21, 2015
BY: GARY GRAHAM

So far this season, all of the storms have passed well to the west or north of the tip of Baja with the outer bands delivering more rain than wind, which is a good thing. Surfers are savoring the high surf from these passing storms that have pounded the West Coast of Baja recently. This is the time of year that the rugged Baja terrain is going to be as green as it ever gets, so enjoy. Gary Graham, gary@garycgraham.com

Fishing off the Punta Arenas Lighthouse, Roger Thompson from Long Beach, Calif., captured the yellowtail, an unusual summertime catch.Cabo San Lucas

After Hurricane Linda whizzed by out west, the outer bands and the swell was enough to close the port for two days which caused concerns that the after-storm conditions would have an unsettling effect on the fishing.

Not to worry. The billfishing snapped right back and has been as hot as the weather has been humid. Blue marlin as well as a few black marlin, striped marlin and sailfish have kept the offshore anglers occupied; the blue billfish flags and red release flags that are seen flapping from the outriggers of the returning boats are quite a sight.

Those interested in catching something they could eat were not disappointed either. There are plenty of football-sized yellowfin tuna, as well as some 100-plus pound models, that worked over the anglers either lucky or unlucky enough to hook into one.

Dorado action is still slower than normal this time of year — more smaller ones than normal. More exciting is the ongoing wahoo bite that continues from the Baja tip all the way up to the border along the West Coast.

Inshore, in addition to the above, roosterfish have been putting on a pretty good show and there are always jacks, skipjack and bonito to mess with for fun.

Air temperatures varied from 74 nights to 92 daytime highs with a 94% humidity level — a mostly cloudy week with a few days of rain. Sea temperatures remained favorable at 84 to 86 degrees on both sides of the peninsula from the Finger Bank all the way around to Los Frailes.

San Jose

Red Hill had been a hot spot for the schooling tuna with lots of fish up to 20 pounds, although this action then shifted south towards Santa Maria. Before the storm, the water was clean and the wahoo action was good, especially to the north of Punta Gorda; many fish to 30 pounds were landed as anglers trolled lures and baitfish.

The larger-grade of yellowfin tuna are still holding around the Gordo Banks; first day out after the storm there was a 145-pound and a 294-pound tuna brought in to La Playita, Puerto Los Cabos.

Plus a blue marlin estimated to weigh over 700 pounds was taken on a large, live bait at the Iman Bank aboard a 23-foot panga based out of Puerto Los Cabos Marina. There was also a 300-pound black marlin and a number of sailfish and striped marlin landed, so definitely some variety is available.

Strong currents made it tough to fish the bottom structure, though a handful of snapper and pargo species were landed, both on baits and yo-yo jigs; as currents slack, these fish should become more active. Dorado were once again few and far between, after a flurry of action the past couple of weeks; as water cleans back up, we should see more of these dorado in the fish counts.

East Cape

Normal summer conditions, with days in the low 90s, water temps in the high 80s and stable. You can expect to get rained on occasionally — lots of small storms around. Good bait is freely available … caballito, ballyhoo and dead sardina.

Billfish continue to provide good sport for those targeting them — mostly sailfish action at the moment. Blue marlin and stripers are also available, mostly close to La Ribera.

While tuna action continues to offer mostly football-size fish mixed in with a lot of skipjack.

The best bet for dorado was trolling.

Wahoo were around with practically all fish taken on Rapalas. Rigged with Fluorocarbon – there were no fish hitting baits rigged with wire.

Inshore and bottom fishing has been good again. Still picking up yellowtail! The trick here is to jig mackerel down deep. Also amberjacks, pargo, cabrilla, etc., are on the rampage; fishing for roosters has been slow again.

La Paz

Las Arenas had one day when everyone caught limits or near limits of dorado, but had to rush back to the beach a tad early when one of our tropical rainstorms came rushing in. It didn’t affect the fishing, however. The next day, because the waters were turned over and the road to the beach was a mud track, everyone elected to fish La Paz where they all caught dorado anyway. But other than that, the dorado have been fairly cooperative — a steady bite as the area gets more active than it has been this past summer.

Commercial guys caught an occasional tuna, but none of the sport boats seemed to locate them. However, we did find the roosterfish willing to bite. Some nice ones in the 20- to 50-pound class and some anglers with light tackle and bass rods, throwing top-water lures had a hoot … plus there were jack crevalle and bonito close to shore as well.

If you want action and you want to catch a fish, you can spend almost all day around La Paz catching dink 5- to 10-pound dorado. The larger ones are scarcer, but they’re out there. Anglers lost a number of larger fish when the larger variety would show up and they were fishing with lighter tackle and would be under-gunned.

There has also been a few sailfish, jack crevalle, big bonito and some smaller roosterfish. Interestingly, they’ve also hooked a few sierra as well which is strange since they are cooler water fish that we normally catch in the winter. Maybe it means the waters are cooling.

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.