Ixtapa Zihuatanejo, Mexico



July 14, 2006, Ed Kunze, Baja On The Fly, Good fishing but few anglers at Ixtapa Zihuatanejo:

The Ixtapa fishing area is really enjoying some very good sportfishing with great weather and the only thing missing is a few more people here to take advantage of it. The 82 to 84-degree blue water is only a couple of miles off the beach and the fish are biting. The rain, as normal, has only been coming in the late evenings.

The blue water sport fleet, consisting of 4 to 5 boats, is averaging 2 to 3 sailfish per day each. The 2 or 3 charter boats fishing inshore are averaging 3 or 4 roosterfish per day, and several large jack crevalle.

Yesterday, Capt. Adolpho on the Dos Hermanos got lucky and found porpoise, birds and game fish herding a large school of small flying fish only about a quarter-mile off the beach. They had already caught 4 roosterfish by the time they pulled up on the feeding frenzy. Before it was over, they were able to catch several large jacks, and 7 more roosterfish off the spot. Eleven roosters in one day is a very memorable event.

My 11-year-old son, Ken, and I fished with Capt. Adolpho today. We caught 4 roosterfish from 25 to 50 pounds, plus 4 large jacks from 18 to 25 pounds. This was all before 11 a.m. As we headed back Adolpho spotted a feeding school of more jacks and roosterfish. The roosters did not cooperate but we released another 6 jacks in the 14 to 17-pound range.

There were a total of three boats fishing the roosters yesterday. All three of us went south and fished from the river outlet Valentine, pronounced with a "B," at 13 miles from Zihuatanejo Bay, on down past the antenna at 22 miles.

Valentine is where we came up on the feeding school when we were on our way back at 11 a.m. As we pulled in on the fish, we also got on the cell phones and called in Capt. Santiago on the Gitana, and Capt. Cheva on the Dos Hermanos II.

The antenna is a microwave tower sitting about 2 miles inland, but a very visible landmark from the ocean.

The bite, possibly from the moon phase, was a little later than normal, and our Capt. Adolpho continued on south to La Barrita at about 30 miles.

It was there we really got into the action. We actually left feeding fish, because Ken was wiped out. One of the roosterfish chasing my popper was huge, and we estimated him at about 70 pounds. Even though he came to within 20 feet of the boat, he never ate the popper. He just slashed at it. It was awesome.

Even though we slow trolled live bait the whole time we were fishing, all but one of the fish was taken on surface poppers. The one fish taken on live bait was when I had about 5 huge jacks chasing my popper and Adolpho threw a live bait at them. It was eaten immediately, for a double hookup.

The beach from Valentine down to La Barrita is just sand with no visible structure. But the fresh water from small rivers all along this stretch seem to attract bait.

At La Barrita there is also a small river. You can see eddies and glassed-out water where there is some rock structure near the bottom. The rocks are not visible, nor are they a hazard to a motor's lower unit, but they sure are a fish attracting magnet.

Ixtapa water temperature 78-84; Air temperature 82-91; Scattered Clouds.

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