Fish Report

February 8th, 2016 Edition
BY: GARY GRAHAM

Sometimes the fishing gets tough and when that happens the excuses begin to fly — sea temps are too hot or too cold, the moon is too bright – these are just a few of the favorite excuses. Fortunately, January has gone and prospects are becoming more favorable in February. Inshore and offshore the bite is on the mend according to our anglers in the field. Good luck, Gary Graham, gary@garycgraham.com

fish2112.jpgCabo San Lucas

While the striped marlin slowed as January came to a close, more bait was being spotted recently and the number of fish being seen and caught was on an upward trend, and several boats reported multiple releases. There was also an encouraging report of a blue marlin estimated to weigh 400 pounds in the count.

For those looking for something they could eat, a long ride out thirty miles there seem to be plenty of yellowfin tuna on the smallish side with an occasional fatty mixed in.

Dorado, a favorite for visiting anglers, were in short supply with only a handful of boats being able to catch one or two. However, the wahoo seem never to have left and are still being caught frequently.

Those who preferred to remain in sight of land contented themselves with a variety of species including triggerfish by the dozen, some ladyfish, skipjacks, yellowtail, sheepshead, grouper and snappers for the table.

Cooler mornings have arrived and the temps have varied from 57 nights to 78 daytime highs and a 55% humidity average but it has been mostly sunny with a few partly cloudy days.

Sea Conditions: The Pacific side is cooling down. A few spots remain at 76 degrees but for the most part, it’s holding at 74, including the Golden Gate down to the Jaime Bank and around the corner from Cabo San Lucas to Chileno. Palmilla Point and heading into the Sea of Cortez is holding at 75 to 76 degrees. Surface breezes flowing mostly from the westerly directions and ranges from nearly calm mornings to 13 mph.

San Jose

Yellowfin action was reported on the more distant Pacific Banks for a larger grade of yellowfin. The Iman Bank was producing tuna to over 30-pounds, though with the northern winds and sea lion presence, this has been a tough bite recently.

Wahoo have been playing hide and seek games as usual, though recently they became more and more active close to shore; trolling lures and baits are your best bet early in the morning, but there are chances at all hours of the day. You just have to be in the right place at the precise time when these finicky feeders decide to strike. The wahoo now being landed have been in the 15- to 40-pound range. Anglers reported wahoo action off of Santa Maria, Palmilla, Punta Gorda and Iman Bank. Last season some of our best wahoo action was found in mid-February.

Striped marlin action has been improving, found straight outside the Puerto Los Cabos Marina, anywhere from one to four miles from shore; most strikes were on caballito, soaking down deep, or slow-trolling baits on the surface, or even occasionally gun and run to feeding fish.

Not much going on for sierra or roosterfish — sporadic action found, though some dorado were caught very close to shore, attracted by available baitfish. More dorado available all the time with sizes ranging up to 20-pounds. Anglers were fortunate to find one or two recently . . . no big numbers of any particular species now.

Bottom action was tough, mainly due to the windy days. It has been hard to reach the more productive areas to the north; closer inshore, where it was more protected from gusty winds, most common catches were for triggerfish, a handful of snapper, bonito and cabrilla.

East Cape

While much of the attention in January centered around wind surfing, on the days that the wind failed to blow, the locals found remarkable action. Out in front of La Ribera the striped marlin made an unseasonable appearance. Not too far offshore, boats were reporting several releases per day. Adding to the exciting discovery was the more surprising catch of a few wahoo in the same area. Farther north Bernie Bathgate hooked a wahoo trolling a ballyhoo, south of the Palmas Hotel; they also had a nice dorado on the same day

Others were reluctant to risk going out because of the threatening winds and spent their time exploring the beaches with mixed results. While several lamented that they had caught nothing at all, others complained of having to brave temperatures in the 30s early in the morning on some beaches. That was rewarded with jacks and a few nice-sized roosters as the sun warmed the chilly surroundings.

La Paz

When the wind quits, the bait comes up and the fish charge in. It was exciting for the few on the beach who watched the wahoo, yellowtail, sailfish and marlin ripping it off just a few hundred yards off the beach at Los Arenas recently.

Then the winds came back and for the most part, fishing got stinky again. On the upside, not many fishermen were around this time of year, anyway. Some sierra, cabrilla, bonito and jack crevalle were caught — more typical of this time of year. Two marlin were hooked and lost. It’s crazy to even see marlin in the middle of winter!

Hopefully the wind will allow anglers to get back out for a day or two. As the north wind continues to do its winter thing for another month or two. Not great…but fishable. Air temps are really nice. High 70s to high 50s. Sun is out. Nice time to be in town!

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.