La Paz, Mexico



June 9, 2005, Dana Allen, La Ventana, La Paz, Mexico Fishing Report:

I took a fishing trip to La Ventana, staying at Baja Joe's, for 1 week. The trip was based it a lot on the book The Baja Catch and I had 4 cousins and a friend with me, Mark Morris, Caara Shayne, Scott Warner, Steve French and Dave French.

The first fishing day and fourth day, on a 12-foot inflatable, we ran up the coast to Punta Gorda, trolling Rebels and similar. The best reef according to The Baja Catch still is. We got and mostly released 1 pound Leopard Grouper, about 30 of them. Only 1 was 2 pounds. All the fish were very close to shore, like 20 feet. Fishing 100 to 500 feet from the beach got zero fish, surprising.

On our second fishing day we went out with local resident Dos. Mark caught 35 pound Yellowfin Tuna and we both got 2 small dorados each, at the 88 spot buoys. The dorados only would hit trolled marlin lures; they ignored sardines. We had a marlin tail, looking at bait, but not hungry. We saw 5 sailfish jumping without being hooked. The comments about cold water are very true. Even on shallow beaches, the water temperature is maybe 75 degrees, and one night air temperatures went into 50s.

On our third fishing day, I got a 70-pound class Wahoo, early at the Wahoo 30 spot south of Isla Cerralvo, on a Marauder, and we got some Skipjack on live bait.

On our fifth day, Mark, Steve, Dave and I went out with panguero Yoyo and had lots of action on live bait, south of Isla Cerralvo. We caught Skipjack and Bonito and then later I hooked a 155 pound Striped Marlin on a Sardine with 5/0 circle hook. The battle lasted 40 minutes. It only jumped once, fighting very smart and pulling extra strong. Then, the 50 lb. line broke near the fish from abrasion on its bill and gill plates.

Even the beach at Ventana had water temperatures about 75 degrees. It was 72-75 degrees south of Cerralvo. Air temperatures were wonderful but cool for June at 77-85 degrees during day. Last Saturday when I got the Marlin, it was plain cold with very strong west wind in the morning. People put on jackets. Only half the normal boats went south of Cerralvo due to the wind and waves. But by 11 a.m. it was quiet and 85 degrees. That is when got the Marlin.

The rest of week was very moderate and wind mild. I was surprised at the lack of fish 100-500 feet off the beach north and south in Ventana bay. We saw pangueros but no gill nets. They did circle netting. We got no Cabrilla at all off Gordo the day we tried it.

We must have had 150 needlefish hits on sardines trolling for Roosterfish on Cerralvo beaches for 1 hour. Caught 3! Lower catch rate than Rebels. Some sardines survived 15 hits. It was fun with 3 of 4 baits being hit at the same time more than once.

They had much less bones than normal, just big ones not the little ones? No worse than a trout. Like a special Needlefish for humans in the area. At Pulmo they were loaded with tiny bones.

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