CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: PISCES FLEET, Cabo San Lucas, October 30, 2000, Tracy Ehrenberg, Reservations Tel 011-52-114-31288; Fax 011-52-114-30588. This year's Bisbee Cabo San Lucas fishing tournament was all set to be special, the 20th tournament, the year 2000 and a record number of entries consisting of 231 teams and 789 anglers.
As usual excitement was high, the night before the contest, with teams scrambling to buy last minute tackle and get final preparations in place. The welcome cocktail party was packed and Wayne Bisbee took questions, regarding tournament rules from anglers. The location this year was different, as for the first time, the whole event took place on the sportfishing dock, also known as the mini cruise ship pier.
Boats were out before dawn on the first day, October 25th, looking for ideal bait, preferably skipjacks, or small yellowfin tuna. The sardine catchers did brisk business, at $20.00 a scoop, but this was of no importance to the anglers, wanting to improve their odds. Local dignitaries joined Bisbee out at the arch, for the start, set at 8.00 am, boats raced back in to be behind the starting line. The line up was impressive, from afar, it looked as if the bay had been transformed and that a strange new reef had popped up overnight, but as you got closer the outline of boats of all different shape and sizes could be discerned. Vessels ranged from humble 26-foot day cruisers, basically outfitted, to incredible yachts, rigged with every kind of electronic imaginable. The largest vessel entered was a beautiful 120 ft luxury yacht, complete with Jacuzzi on the upper deck. A flare shot into the air, signaled the start of the tournament and boats raced out from the starting line, battling for position, bows lifting clear of the water and creating a roller coaster of waves.
A terrified guy in a kayak, who must have been the only person in town not to realize what was happening that morning, was right in the path of the departing vessels and raised his paddle high above his head, either in futile defense, or to make himself visible.
Radio activity among Cabo San Lucas fishing boats was pretty slow the first day, but around 11.00 am it was reported that a vessel had a fish on board and that they were heading back to the scale. By noon Rora II, a boat out of Puerta Vallarta, had hung their fish. We had our first qualifier, a 395 lb blue marlin caught by Rafael Herrera from Leon, Mexico. This news encouraged anglers that the fish were out there, despite rough conditions that produced seas up to 10 feet this first day. Two other boats weighed in fish before the 5.00 pm lines out signal, one by the C-Bandit and one by Grisannel, neither reached the 300 lb weight limit - making team Rora very happy - it was just a question of waiting, as they were entered in all the daily jackpots, of $200.00, $500.00. $1000.00 & $2000.00. Boats starting showing up back in Cabo by 6.00 pm and another three fish were weighed in, again, none made the 300 lb mark, however as darkness began, it was reported that Picante Expresso, had just landed a fish that they had been fighting for seven hours and that they were on the way back to the weigh station. This boat pulled up at around 7.30 and the fish hoisted up, proved to weigh 472 lbs, caught by Dennis Lesinsky from East L.A - these guys were not entered in all the daily jackpots, which meant their winnings would not be as high as Rora II.
Day two the tournament started in the same way as the first, with Cabo San Lucas boats racing out after the 10 second count down, leading up to 8.00 am, Bisbee wished the boats luck and the hunt was on. One boat was called back to port, as they were seen being handed a rod and reel from a panga, which is strictly against the rules and were not permitted to fish this day. There was more action the second day, but no fish came to the scale really early, the first vessel to weigh a fish the second day, was El Vato, but their fish was just shy, at 282 lbs, a couple of other non-qualifiers were weighed, followed by a 340 lb blue taken on Pro Fish Nt. Shortly after Los Companeros, showed up with a very decent 460 lb blue marlin, caught by Wayne Kozlosky from Chicago. Pura Vida followed with a 352 lb black marlin. At 6.00 pm After Midnight, a beautiful 75 ft Mikelson [After Midnight], out of Newport Beach pulled up to the dock, all ears had been tuned to the radio, as their hook up was reported at 11.00 am and it was known, from the rumor among the crews, that this was serious fish. This was apparent to everybody, as they backed up, their fish shrouded, in a protective cover. The rigid dorsal fins, protruding from the cover, left no doubt that this was a black. As is the custom, the crowd called out numbers, of what they thought the fish would weigh. This fish was impressive, with a huge head and shoulders, when finally hung a hush descended on the crowd, as the all clear signal was given and the weight called out at 500 lbs, which produced a lot of whooping and hollering especially by angler Russ Armstrong. This team was looking at a big payday, as they were entered in all the daily jackpots. Only two other fish were due in at the scale and shortly after Dorado I weighed in a 312 lb black marlin. Karina kept us waiting until close to 9.00 pm before showing up with another black, that didn't make it at 276 lbs, making After Midnight the day two winner and current leader in the tournament.
Day Three saw anglers heading off again, into less than ideal conditions, battling rough seas and wind, however, anybody had a shot and energy was high. First fish of the day came in around 11.00 am, by King Fisher, sadly just two pounds short at 298 lbs. An hour later No Problem pulled in with a fair size black that tipped the scales at 371 lbs. This was followed by a non-qualifier and then came Chupacabra, last year's second place team, which put everybody on the alert. Their blue went up on the scale and registered 404 lbs, for Cabo San Lucas angler John Uhr, which definitely put them in the running for a place. Another blue was weighed in shortly afterwards by Tuna Time, barely making it at 301 lbs. Anglers started to get desperate into the final hours of the contest, calling each other on cell phones and radio to get reports on activity from each other. Two other boats were reported has having fish on board and heading back to the scale. As it drew near to 5.00 pm, people from the whole town started drifting towards the scale, setting up for a good look at whoever the winners would be. The 5.00 pm lines out signal was given and boats started racing back to port, all teams exhausted after three, long and rough days at sea. Between 5.00 pm and 6.00 pm the two fish came in, neither making the 300 lb mark.
Though it has been barely noticed, Minerva III had reported a hook-up at 3.35 pm. News started to trickle back and the word around the docks was that they had a very nice fish. This made us sit up and listen; the local crews would never say anything like that, unless there was truth to it. This news caused a ripple of excitement through the locals, Minerva III, is a popular 31 ft Bertram, owned by Bob and Minerva Smith, much loved residents of Cabo San Lucas for 25 years and owners of Minerva's Baja Tackle. The general consensus was, "we hope they get it, it couldn't go to better people".
At around 5:40 the fish was reported to be on board and that the boat was on the way in. They had hooked up six miles out from Salina, near to Punta Gorda, so it would take them a while to get in. The scale was to be closed at 10.00 pm, so they had to be back by then to qualify. As darkness settled on Cabo, the crowd around the scale began to swell, with many well-wishers from the local sportfishing community gathering along with their families.
By 9.00 pm the crowd had grown to close to 1000 people all eager to get a look at what could be the winner. By this time, lights could be seen far off in the ocean, slowly making their way towards Cabo and at 9.30 pm Minerva III backed up to the dock. Everybody could see that the fish was big, but it was hard to guess...anticipation was high and you could of heard a pin drop, as the fish was hoisted high. The weighmaster signaled the all clear and then the clear words rang out into the night 534 lbs! The crowd erupted into cheers, hoots and applause, the local crew had done it, the smaller boat, the little guy beating out the big guy -- the atmosphere was electric. The winner of the 2000 Bisbee was Minerva III, with a team of anglers from Alaska, guided to their victory by a Cabo crew.
A collective contented mood pervaded the docks the following day, as the local boats, got back to their normal day charters, one of "our" crews, had won, meaning the Minerva III's captain, Gil Kakogui and deckhand Hector Romero.
Most of the crews that staff Cabo's day charter boats, which number over 100 vessels, are related in some way, so everybody felt they had a part in the victory.
This mood was maintained throughout the day until just about one hour before the awards dinner began. The word began to circulate that Minerva III, was not going to get the prize.
There was unbelief, everyone knew the crew on Minerva III were straight up guys and Minerva Smith, the owner and local I.G.F.A rep, is known to be a person of ethics and good moral character who wouldn't have anything to do with any "funny business".
I hooked up with the glum looking Minerva III team at the just before the awards banquet began. Only two of the team were present, Tim Worthington from Homer, Alaska and Bob Hunt from California, they told me that angler Jim Grimes was back at the hotel throwing up, being consoled by team captain Chuck Hagen, as they had been told that they would not be receiving any prizes and then went on to explain.
Tim Worthington told me that Jim Grimes had been subjected to a polygraph test, as all money winners are supposed to be. The state trooper from Anchorage, with 20 years in the service, was the novice angler on the team, never having caught a marlin in his life. The other guys had fished the tournament seven times before, with this being their fourth year on Minvera III.
It was Jim's turn in the chair when they got their strike on a 15 lb yellowfin tuna. They followed their carefully practiced sequence, with Jim lifting the rod from the holder, waiting 5 seconds, as instructed before moving the lever and setting the hook. The fish was firmly on before he sat down in the chair. Next followed the fight, which was to last four muscle wearying hours, with Jim not knowing his right from his left "he would tell us move the chair to the left" stated Worthington, "when he actually went the right, -- he was so tired" said Worthington.
They tried to leader the fish three times, with the rest of the team alert and doing everything they could to make this come out right. By now it was getting dark and Hector, the deckhand crouched on the deck eyes riveted on the line, looking for the swivel to come up , so that he could grab the leader". " A few times Jim called out, Don't touch my line", commented Bob Hunt, fellow team member " and Hector jumped back, raising his hands if under arrest, saying, I'm not touching your line".
On the third attempt they gaffed the fish and boated it. Jim Grimes was asked by the Polygraph tester "Is there anything at all that you were uncomfortable with", and Grimes replied "well, I think the deckhand did touch the line 3 or 4 times". The Polygraph examiner, replied " that everything seemed to be in order" and went off to confer with Wayne Bisbee, who returned to the room and told Grimes and the rest of the team, as quoted by Tim Worthington "I'd rather have you guys cheat and win, that to tell the truth and get disqualified for an infraction".
However Jim believing that he was doing nothing wrong just stated what he believed happened, in which case, Bisbee asked them to "respectively withdraw", that the deckhand touching the line was against the rules.
The team protested loudly and asked that they all be given a Polygraph test, along with the deckhand in question, which was refused, with Bisbee saying "I've got all I need".
I questioned Hector Romero and Gil Kakogui, who told me" we've done nothing wrong, we have a lot of experience and know what we are doing, we would not risk breaking off a fish of this size by touching the line". Romero added " the line did touch the back of my glove on one occasion, but this was an accidental brush, there was never any intent to help the angler", not only are they disappointed they also lost around $50,000.00 a life changing amount for these guys.
Worthington and Hunt, explained that Grimes was a rookie angler and could not clearly see what was going on at the transom, whilst he was sitting in the chair, they claim that what he saw was Hector handle the leader three times and that what he told the Polygraphier was not correct.
The dinner proceeded with raffles and auctions and then came the part everybody waited for, the pay out of prize money: Wayne Bisbee made a small speech, saying "This is a very difficult thing for me to do, I do not want to imply by any means, that there was any cheating on the part of the team of Minerva III, however, the integrity of one of the anglers has led us to disqualify their fish".
At this Minerva stood and stepped up onto the stage, but was refused the microphone by Bisbee, she introduced herself as loudly as she could and advised everybody, that her team had won fairly, they had won the tournament and had lodged a formal complaint with Bisbee, she then called upon the authorities to intervene to rectify the situation and that she wanted justice. The prizes were awarded by the amount of money won, starting with the smallest check:
3rd place in tournament: Los Companeros 460 lb blue, $96,525.00.
2nd place in tournament: $200 & $500.00 day one jackpot winners, Picante Expresso, 472 lb blue,$279,765.00.
5th place in tournament: $1000 & $2000 day one jackpot winners, Rora II 395 lb blue, $445,140.00.
4th place in tournament: all four daily jackpots, day three, Chupacabra, 404 lb blue, $574,560.00.
1st place in tournament: and all four daily jackpots, day two, After Midnight, 500 lb black, $989,910.00.
The atmosphere was very subdued after the incident with Minerva and a lot people were angered with what appeared to be an injustice. Minerva told me that she was very upset, as the rest of the team had not had a chance to be interviewed by the Polygrapher and she stated that there was no committee no further investigation and that Wayne was the sole person that decided the fate of her team. Jim Grimes when asked could he say that he was 100% sure, that the mate had touched the line, replied "no". When asked if he felt they had won fairly replied "yes".
This has left a bad taste in everyone's mouth and we hope this situation will be cleared up soon. We appreciate all that Bisbee brings to our town, but the feeling among the locals is that their people have been robbed.
Last minute update: there is a video in possession of local Cabo people, which will be shown to Wayne Bisbee, where the team of After Midnight can be seen aiding the angler in a way that is against the rules and would disqualify the boat from earning any monies. Federal authorities are being urged to stop payment on all monies until an investigation takes place.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: PICANTE FLEET, Cabo San Lucas, October 31, 2000, Sergio Cortes, Reservations Tel 011-52-114-32474; Fax 011-52-114-35969. 2000 Bisbee's Black and Blue Cabo San Lucas Fishing Tournament "2nd Place winner!" Captain Jaime "Hook" Gonzalez (below) and first mate Fernando Rodriguez made Dennis Lesinsky's dream come true by bringing in a 472 lb. blue marlin after an 8 hour fight that began early around 10:30 a.m. This fish won Bisbee's first day jackpot and Tournament 2nd place.
October 31, 2000. Fish available: Blue & Black Marlin, Dorado & Yellowfin Tuna. Water Temperature: Approximately 83 - 86 F. Air temperature: hi 90 / low 61. Humidity: 64 %. Wind: 9-12 Knots per hr. Pacific, 8-10 Knots per hr. Sea of Cortes.
Yesterday's Luckiest: "Knot 2 Worry" 35' CABO. Captain: Jesus "Moro" Zenteno. Angler: Austin Smith. Production: 1 Black Marlin 325 lbs. ( released ); 3 Dorado 30-55 lbs. Hot Spots: Golden Gate ( Pacific Ocean ). Fleet Production (6 boats): 2 Blue Marlin, 1 Black Marlin, 5 Sailfish, 9 Dorado & 11 Yellowfin Tuna.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: FLY HOOKER SPORT FISHING, Cabo San Lucas, October 22-29, 2000, Capt. George & Mary Landrum, Reservations Tel 011-52-117-01271; 011-52-114-87452. WEATHER: It just keeps getting better as we approach the end of the year. No more need of air-conditioning while sleeping at night and daytime exertion does not cause us to break out in a heavy sweat. Night temperatures have been in the mid 60's to low 70's and daytime it has run between low 70's to high 80's. Steady breezes with gusts during the middle of the week kept us feeling cool even when we were in the high 80's! Humidity has averaged in the mid 60 % range for the week. A partly cloudy sky with a few light sprinkles here in Cabo has kept the dust down and the vegetation green.
WATER: The beginning of the week and the end of the week were flat-water days on both the Pacific and the Sea of Cortez. Temperatures remained above 80 degrees for the Sea of Cortez side of Cabo San Lucas with some spots reaching as high as 85 degrees. On the Pacific side we had a small temperature break running out from the cape to the southwest. The range was from 79 on the Pacific side to 81 on the Sea of Cortez side. Strong winds during the middle of the week forced the temperature break to the east and caused very choppy waters during the Bisbee Black and Blue Tournament.
BAIT: There was no problem getting live bait for the last week and we did not see the usual increase in price for Cavallito that normally happens during tournament time. Large bait prices were steady at $2 per piece and Sardines were available at $20 per scoop. I did hear of some of the boats paying as much as $50 per scoop for Sardines but I have to assume that it was because they looked like they could afford it!
BILLFISH: News of the week on this species was the Bisbee Black and Blue Fishing Tournament on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. There were not as many large Blues and Black caught this year as last year. Plenty of Striped Marlin were caught and released along with small Blue Marlin and a few Sailfish. The hotspots appeared to be the Gordo Banks, the 95 Spot and due south of the Cape using live tuna for the larger fish. Concentrations of Striped Marlin were found along the temperature break on the Pacific side and there were still Sailfish among the Dorado inshore. Cavallito was the bait of choice this week for the smaller Marlin because there were not many Mackerel available. Lure selections were as varied as the fishermen themselves but Bleeding Mackerel and Dorado colors were among the choices most fishermen placed in the spread which produced interest from the larger Marlin.
YELLOWFIN TUNA: There were some football fish caught this past week off Gordo and San Jaime Banks but the larger fish were once again found mixed with the Dolphin. Best luck with the football fish was found among the boats using live Sardines as both bait and chum. The larger fish among the Dolphin were striking Marlin lures and a few were caught on the larger live bait dropped down by boats looking for a big Blue or Black Marlin. Most of the Dolphin pods were found approximately 30 miles to the south of the Cape.
DORADO: The Dorado catch is starting to taper off just a little bit from the fast and furious action that we have had for the past month. There are still a large number of fish being found and caught but the numbers have dropped just a bit. From the coast out to a distance of about 5 miles on the Pacific side there have been good sized schools of Dorado found but the fish have not been the large ones, most of these have been between 10 and 20 pounds. Larger ones were found further offshore under drifting debris and these fish were in the 30-50 pound range. These fish bit well on live bait but were difficult to fool with artificials towards the end of the week.
WAHOO: Gordo, San Jaime and Golden Gate Banks have been producing an occasional Wahoo but the majority of strikes this week have come from the open water. With over 200 boats working the deeps looking for a winning Marlin it is no surprise that this is the case. Most of the fish have been in the 20-30 pound range but a few have been 40-50 pounds. Marlin lures have hooked the majority and there was no discernible difference shown by the Wahoo as to color.
INSHORE: Action has been good for Dorado, Skipjack and Bonito. The usual shoreside species have not been abundant except for small Roosterfish in the 5-10 pound range. Until next week, Tight Lines!
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: FLY HOOKER SPECIAL REPORT FOR BISBEE TOURNAMENT OCT. 25-27, 2000
Five great guys with high expectations have booked the "Fly Hooker" for the Bisbee Black and Blue Tournament. This is the richest fishing tournament in the world with a total payoff expected to reach over $2,300,000! With a team entry fee of $5,000 and entry into all of the jackpots costing an additional $11,100 plus the cost to charter a boat and hotel expenses, it takes people with an extreme fishing habit to try this one!
These guys have the habit! Team #104 consists of Ed Clark, Todd Martin, Brad Graves, Jim Wills and Steve Wills. Only four anglers are allowed to fish each day so these guys are working on a rotating basis. As participants in the World Billfish Series and tournament contenders for the past 20 years there is a lot of expertise and experience at work here.
On the morning of the 25th the guys showed up at the dock ready to go and catch the tournament winner! Early to bed the night before (most of them) they arrived at 6:45. We placed their two Penn International 80 2-speed reels on our Calstar rods and moved two of our Shimano 50WLRS reels to our standby rods. With all the heavy tackle set out we used the chantillion scale to set the drags at 28 pounds of pressure at strike position. The next move was to cast off and Mary and I saw the team and the "Fly Hooker" on their way with shouts of "Buena Suerte" following after them.
As related to us later, they used the color sea surface printouts, combined with the local knowledge of Capt. Manuel and Capt. Juan to decide to head out to the Pacific side and work a temperature break that was in the area. Hopefully it held good concentrations of bait that in turn would attract a large Marlin to the area. They worked their way up to the north, battling some fairly choppy sea conditions before they swung out into the ridge area between Golden Gate and San Jaime Banks. This was also the area the temperature break had appeared at on the charts, possibly forced into existence by the underwater ridge there. The results were disappointing with only a small Wahoo and two Dorado striking the lures and hooking up. They did sight two Striped Marlin tailing but were not interested in these smaller Billfish. They were back in the Marina at 6:15, taking an hour and fifteen minutes to return after the 5 p.m. "lines out!" call.
Thursday the 26th was again a day of optimism. Yesterday was history and this was a new shot at big money! Deciding not to second-guess their reasons for working the area that they had yesterday, they again headed out to the Pacific side. The winds had not quieted down during the night and as a result the water was a real mess out there. Later I was told that there had been several swells that the team had felt would have turned a large Hatteras 180 degrees, but the 31 Bertram was pushed only slightly off her path. There were more signs of fish in the area than there had been yesterday but they only had two into the lures. They managed to catch and release a Striped Marlin and later had a medium sized Blue Marlin strike the lure run from the bridge rod. That lure was a Bleeding Mackerel Zuker and the fish became airborne several times before landing on the line and breaking off. Later they found some debris in the water and took a break to catch a limit of Dorado. Once again there were no large fish seen by the team, but they had a good dinner.
October 27th was the last day of the tournament and so far the largest fish weighed in had been a 500-pound Black Marlin. Positive that the area they had been fishing would hold a large Marlin they again went out to the area. The water had calmed a little from the previous day and there were great signs of life in the area! Whales, Dolphin, birds and fish! All right! Totally concentrated on the fishing they soon were able to find Marlin. Unfortunately they were all Striped Marlin. Two of these managed to hook themselves on the large lures and were brought to the boat and released in fairly short order. Six other fish were sighted tailing down swell but there were no small live baits on board to offer these fish, even if the team had wanted to catch them. Slightly disappointed in not catching a large Blue or Black Marlin, but experienced enough to know that luck often plays a large part in a tournament and in day to day fishing, they returned to port happy at being able to go and compete in a tournament that most fishermen are only able to dream about. Thanks guys, and we hope that your next tournament competition results in more cash and prestige for your team, because you deserve it!
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: FLY HOOKER SPECIAL REPORT FOR 28 OCTOBER 2000
Today the Rochetti Party has booked the "Fly Hooker" and these guys are fishermen! They are going again on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday so you will have to wait until next week to find out their luck then. Today they arrived on time and Mary and I were there to greet them. A small problem delayed leaving dockside until about 6:50 but it was time spent getting to know these guys better, and time spent that way is never wasted! All they want to do today is have fun and catch fish, there are three more days ahead to get serious about just one species if they want.
The "Fly Hooker" headed out towards the Pacific side again as that was the area that that been holding the Dorado, but it was not until they got out about 28 miles that they found anything resembling a concentration of fish. They did catch a couple of Dorado on the way out but the fish were scattered. Eventually they found some drifting debris and were lucky enough to be the only boat in the area. The guys proceeded to have a blast with the Dorado, having the beautiful fish come charging in on the baits from a long distance, gray-hounding in and out of the ocean, racing to see who would be lucky enough to get to the bait first! Eventually they caught enough fish to supply supper and a few bags of fillets to freeze up and then it turned into a catch and release party. Actually for John it was a release party all day long and the other guys were not hesitant to remind him of it. Poor John too some severe ribbing about loosing the large Wahoo after three runs, loosing the 35+lb. Dorado and all the smaller ones. Declaring that he would only be able to eat fish that he had brought into the boat, they figured that he would loose a lot of weight this trip! It's all right John, this is only the first day and you never know, often he who is first laughed at has the last laugh. Until tomorrow, Tight Lines from Mary, George and the "Fly Hooker" crew!
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: FLY HOOKER SPECIAL REPORT FOR 29 OCTOBER 2000
Today Roger Salyer, his wife and their young son Canyon were the anglers aboard the "Fly Hooker". Roger stated that they had caught plenty of Dorado on another boat the day before so today he would like to catch a Marlin. As a special request he wondered if it would be possible for his son Canyon to catch a Roosterfish, since that would be the perfect size fish for him. Last year Roger fished with us on Nov. 17th and we only had four strikes on lures. Hopefully we would be able to fulfill his request today! Mary and I saw them off at 6:30 this morning and wished them luck. As we found out on their return, it had been just what they had been looking for! Several Dorado were found and ended up in the box for the crew, then Roger was able to capture a Striped Marlin! Canyon told us that he had been needed to assist his dad with the fish but that was O.K., he didn't mind a bit! Later Roger decided that a replica of the fish would look good on the wall and ordered a mount made. His wife sighed and said he had ordered a mount of a Dorado the day before and that now she supposed she would have to redecorate the house with fish! With the Marlin caught it was time to head toward shore and try to hook Canyon up to a Roosterfish. On the way in they caught two football sized 15-20 pound Yellowfin Tuna. All right, grilled Tuna steaks for dinner! Getting in close to the beach they began the search for a Roosterfish. In short order Canyon was hooked up, but it took him several hookups before he was able to bring his first fish to the boat. Eventually Canyon was able to bring two Roosterfish to the boat, both in the 10 pound range. He was happy about that, and the chance to assist his dad with the Marlin, but what was he holding in his hand when he had left the "Fly Hooker" and was walking down the Malecon? Yep, a little bitty, perfectly formed 3-inch flying fish! All right Roger, get a mount ordered! Thanks folks, we are glad you had such a successful trip and had such a good time. We look forward to seeing you again next year aboard the "Fly Hooker". Until then, Tight Lines from Mary, George and the "Fly Hooker" crew.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: HOTEL SOLMAR SUITES, Cabo San Lucas, October 27, 2000, Renee Santa Cruz, Reservations Tel 800-344-3349. If previous weeks experienced "explosions" of dorado fishing, this week should qualify as "atomic"in dorado fishing at Cabo - at least by anglers on Solmar Sport- fishing Fleet boats. Even with windy and choppy sea conditions the first 2 days of the week, they recorded an astonishing 960 of the colorful dorado caught, and some anglers quitting the fishing grounds because of arms and shoulders too weary to fight more fish.
Weather conditions for the remainder of the week included very calm waters, air temperatures of 90 degrees, and water surface temps holding at 85. Fleet manager Rene Santa Cruz reported that most anglers fishing the Pacific side were 6 to 8 miles out, ranging up past Magrino. Boats cruising farther up to Golden Gate caught fish, but eventually found better success by cruising back closer to Cabo.
Dorado are still schooling, Santa Cruz said, and most anglers are keeping only 3 to 4 fish per boat and releasing any additional catches. "Boats are coming in early because the clients just can't fight any more fish," he said. Orange and yellow lures were most successful.
The fleet's catch this period included 1 black marlin, 14 blue marlin, 28 striped marlin, 14 sailfish, 960 dorado, 43 tuna, 2 wahoo, and 2 roosterfish. Thirty-nine billfish were released.
Solmar's "Anglers of the Week" included 9 year-old Simon Diaz, Jr., Las Vegas, NV, who fished on a 28' Solmar boat with his dad, and fought a 250 pound blue marlin for an hour, and raised 9 dorado. Greg Prutch, Englewood, CO, raised 5 blue marlin, 1 sailfish, and 4 dorado on day on Solmar VI.
Richard and Barbara Bennet, Phoenix, AZ, hooked a 300 pound blue marlin for 1 hour and 45 minutes, with a whale circling the the boat all the while as spectator, and all other lines hooked up to dorado to add to the show.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: JEFF KLASSEN SPORT FISHING, Cabo San Lucas, October 30, 2000, Jeff Klassen, Reservations Tel 360-402-3474. Trick or treat, smell my feet & Hola muchachos y muchachas! Hey, I was all excited about Halloween, until my mom just called from England and told me that at 38 I was to old to go "trick or treating". Apparently, I was supposed to give it up at 12 or 13. Now she tells me. That explains some of the comments I've been receiving over the last few years.
Let's get to the fishing!
Both sides of the point are providing anglers with fish these days, as we get to our peak time in Los Cabos. The 95 bank has been somewhat of a hot bed with a lot of boats fishing that area. Other than that though, almost all areas are potential good spots. Water temperatures have dropped a degree or two with averages being between 80 and 83 degrees. This may explain the prominence of Striped marlin in the area at the moment. It is kind of early for them but they are currently the best bet, when targeting billfish. They are averaging the typical 125 pounds, but reach about 180. The best lure color for Stripers now is the bleeding mackerel (red/orange/yellow), which is also a typical winter color. Petrolero and purple/black are also popular choices at the moment, although those two usually are. There are still pretty good schools of tuna around. Pangas are getting smaller fish, 10 to pounders in tighter to shore. Those venturing offshore have been finding them to almost 80 pounders. No real biggies caught this past week, that I heard of anyway. There are sardines around at the moment, which make the best bait, and chum, for these fish, especially the smaller ones. There is still plenty of Dorado present, with most fish being between 15 and 20 pounds, although several were caught up to 60 pounds. The wahoo bite has picked up a little with a number of them being caught lately. They tend to be smaller fish though between 30 and 40 pounds. Sailfish catches are also up from last week's report and are smaller fish too. Several 40 pounders were caught and most averaged 80 pounds. Inshore, there is still no great numbers of Sierra mackerel yet, but it is picking up. These fish too are smaller ones with 3 to 5 pounders being average. There are still some decent roosterfish in the area, particularly along the Pacific-side, north of Los Arcos, up to 35 pounds.
Surf fishermen are still fishing the rocky areas, and should be for the winter, looking for Leopard grouper and snappers. There are quite a few 5 to 10 pound snappers and 10 to 15 pound grouper around, especially along the Gulf-side shorelines. There would be larger fish along the Pacific, just fewer of them, and harder to land. Use top-waters amongst the rocks.
During the tournament it was kind of windy, with choppy seas and pretty big swells, but things have calmed right down now and the water conditions are near perfect again. Guess what folks, that's the Comment for this week, Happy Haloween andI am outa here!
ENSENADA, MEXICO: LILY FLEET, Ensenada, October 28, 2000, Sammy Susarrey, Reservations Tel/Fax, 5 to 9 p.m., 011-52-617-46747; Cell 011-52-618-67485. Today the Amigo fished locally at Ensenada with 2 anglers, reporting 5 bonitos to 4 pounds, 8 lingcod 8-10 pounds, 7 red snapper, 10 whitefish, and 13 miscellaneous. Water temperature was 65 degrees. Today was flat and calm, overcast with no wind or swells. Today's bait was sardines, 4 inches. All fish were caught on the reef at the island. Yesterday, the Tamara fished locally with 4 anglers, reporting 3 yellowtail to 12 pounds, 4 big bonitos to 8 pounds, 5 lingcod, 2 red snapper.
Ensenada, October 25, 2000. Today, we brought in a nice white seabass 15-20 pounds, and yellowtails to 15 pounds, 5 anglers fishing at Todos Santos Island. Water temperature fishing at Ensenada was 65 degrees and the day was nice and flat.
MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: BAJA ON THE FLY, San Carlos, November 1, 2000, Gary Graham, Reservations Tel 800-919-2252; Fax 760-746-7260. Temperatures: 77-degree high; Low 63 with some wind in the afternoons. Water temperature: 76 degrees in the mangroves and 74-77 offshore. STRIPED MARLIN - A large volume of fish has moved into the area, particularly up toward the Thetis Bank. DORADO - Mostly around the shark buoys. TUNA - Scattered near the entrada. CORVINA - Several larger fish near the Power Plant. SNOOK - A few smaller fish up towards Devil's Curve. YELLOWTAIL - Not too many on the surface, mostly down deep. QUICK COMMENT - Rough sea conditions slowed the action somewhat. When the boats have gotten out, the reports have been excellent. Up in the mangroves, fishing at Magdalena Bay has been fair to good for corvina, grouper and a few smaller snook.
San Carlos, October 28, 2000. Temperatures: 78-degree high; low 66. Water temperature: 77 degrees in the mangroves and 74-77 offshore. STRIPED MARLIN - Great!. DORADO - Mostly around the shark buoys.. TUNA - Scattered near the entrada.. CORVINA - Several larger fish near Devil's Curve.. SNOOK - A few smaller fish up towards Devil's Curve.. YELLOWTAIL - Not too many on the surface, mostly down deep.. QUICK COMMENT - There reports of good catches of white sea bass outside the entrada and close to Magdalena Island all the way up to the entrance to Santa Maria Bay. Seven miles west of the entrance to Santa Maria bay produced good marlin fishing this week. Further up toward the Thetis Bank and just a few miles above the bank several boats reported excellent marlin fishing with almost non-stop action.
MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: MAG BAY TOURS, Punta Hughes, October 28, 2000, Brian Freitag, Reservations 800-599-8676. What's Biting: Striped Marlin, Dorado,- offshore Grouper, Bass - inshore. Red Hot! Marlin & Dorado from the 100 fathom line to the Thetis bank. This week's fish count at Magdalena Bay: 96 Striped marlin to 175#; 150+ Dorado (20 over 60#, and 1 over 75#, it was 5' 8" long!), 2 Broomtail Grouper.
The Jurgen and Erich Dominik headed the "Baja Rangers" and all had a dream trip, 8 anglers in 3 boats (2 trailer boats, and 1 of our pangas) were astounded by "the best marlin fishing in the world" (their words, not ours).
Surf Who cares when the fishing is that good!?!
SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: GORDO BANKS PANGAS, San Jose del Cabo, October 29, 2000, Eric Brictson, Reservations 800-408-1199; Fax 619-447-4098; 011-52-114-21147. Anglers at San Jose del Cabo this week were treated to typical fall season weather patterns, ideal temperatures with plenty of sunshine, a couple rain squalls and last but not least the persistent wind from out of the northeast. It was not so breezy that you could not reach the further fishing grounds, it was just to the point that it made overall efforts that much more difficult.
This past week the prestigious Bisbee Marlin Fishing Tournament took place and proved to be the largest event yet but also added that much more fishing pressure on the local hot spots, one of which is the Gordo Banks, where the second day jackpot fish, a 500 pound black marlin, was taken on a live trolled skipjack.
The local panga fleet continued to concentrate mainly between the Iman Bank and the Gordo Banks, the bite did improve for them in recent days, despite all of the tournament boats cruising around, they found excellent action on yellowfin tuna, good numbers of dorado, along with a handful of wahoo and sailfish. Live sardinas remained abundant off of the San Jose Estuary and offshore on the Banks there were chihuil, bolito and skipjack that could be caught for additional bait.
The hot bite for the week was definitely for the yellowfin tuna on the Inner Gordo Bank. Average fish taken was between 50 and 70 pounds, with daily boat catches ranging from 2 or 3 on up to 6 or 8 fish, they were all quality sized and anglers were quickly filling up their ice chests with fresh fillets. The tuna were striking on the live sardinas, caballitos, chihuil and chunk bait, with the sardinas being the most productive.
Anglers at San Jose del Cabo were using tackle ranging from 25 pound to 80 pound, and with the way the fish were fighting it was wise to use gear on the heavy side, because many anglers were loosing fish while using too light of gear. The yellowfin were not particularly line shy and anglers using the 80 pound line had almost the same amount of hook ups as the people using lighter gear, the only difference was that their percentage of fish landed was a lot higher and they were in much better position if they did get hook into a gorilla tuna.
Dorado were being found throughout the region, hitting on lures and then on bait once the schools were located. Most of the fish were weighing 8 to 12 pounds but there were some bulls much larger accounted for. The area of Iman proved to be one of the better spots for the dorado and there were also plenty of football sized tuna there as well. The Iman Bank is also where a few wahoo have been taken by anglers fishing with live chihuil, sardinas and by trolling skirted lures or Marauders, most of them were in the 20 to 40 pound class, but they are still only be found in very limited numbers and it is now time that they normally should be more plentiful, hopefully they are just showing up a little late the fall season. Billfish action was way down, except for sailfish, which were being found daily by the panga fleets, hitting on the same rigs as the tuna and dorado and in the same general areas, weighing in the 40 to 100 pound range and adding more excellent sport for the light tackle enthusiasts. Good Fishing, Eric.
SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: JIG STOP TOURS, San Jose del Cabo, October 30, 2000, Larry Burson, Victor's Fleet, Reservations Tel 949-496-0960; 800-521-2281; Fax 949-496-1384. Victor Gutierrez has left the area! He sold his agency office to Luis Duhart, who will continue to operate as "Victor's Sportfishing", which has been operating for 18 years.
Luis is a retired Mexicana Airlines pilot who has other successful businesses renting construction equipment. He brings his business sense, his intelligence, and enthusiasm to make investments and improvements in the Victor's operation.
I have met with him and his staff, as well as the other boat operators in the fleet. I believe we are united in an effort to give the best service and keep the equipment and the service at a superior level.
Victor's Sportfishing office will remain at the beachfront Hotel Posada Real in San Jose del Cabo. Office hours will be 9:00 am to 9:00 pm. Upon arrival in Los Cabos, you may telephone the office direct at 21092 to verify your reservation.
The operation of the Super Pangas is clearly the best in Baja. They routinely fish very aggressive, sometimes using 4 or 5 tanks of gas, running 30 miles or more to reach the best fishing. The boats are fast, with large engines. Most have the new 105 HP Evinrude outboards. All the Panga Captains are very experienced and talented. They know how to work a big fish and have landed Marlin over 900 lbs, and Tuna over 300 lbs.
Jig Stop Tours will continue as the exclusive booking agent in the U.S. to handle all world wide reservations for clients outside of Mexico. U.S. reservations can be made by calling Toll Free, Monday through Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, at 800-521-2281. We offer both Super Pangas and Cruisers.
The fleet is getting busy now with the Fall season started. Be sure to call for a reservation or you may not get a boat on the beach.
October 30, 2000. The Inner Gordo Bank is producing good Yellowfin Tuna action daily for San Jose del Cabo fishing boats. The Tuna range in size from 30 lbs to over 100 lbs. Live Sardinas are readily available from the commercial cast net operators at San Jose del Cabo. You get a good portion for $20.00. They are great bait and will produce action on all species. The problem is when using a small hook for a Sardina, such as a #2 or #1, it is the wrong hook to land a larger Tuna. Chances are the small hook will pull out of the fish after being hooked up for more than 30 minutes. Many of the big Tuna are being lost because of this. I recommend you use a #4 Circle hook when using live sardinas. It will survive a much longer because they tend to hook the fish in the bone of the corner of the mouth.
Another way to get the larger Tuna is to use larger bait , such as Chihuil, which can be used with a larger circle hook. But, the Chihuiles are difficult to catch. We use a hand line of 4 lb test with a tiny hook baited with cut bait. Every Chihuil you catch can get you a prized fish. Right now they are the hot bait on the banks! A live Chihuil will likely get you hooked up to a big Yellowfin Tuna, a Sailfish, or a large Dorado.
Dorado are somewhat on and off in each area. One day the Gordo will produce 12 to 18 Dorado per boat, then it will drop to 2 to 4 per boat. As of Wednesday, the best catches of the larger Dorado came from the boats that fished towards Cabo San Lucas. They were mostly 18 to 30 lbs. A few Wahoo are coming. We are seeing 1 to 3 a day at the fillet table.
We had some periods of heavy tropical rain last week in warm weather and warm water.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: BAJA ON THE FLY, Buena Vista, November 1, 2000, Gary Graham, Reservations Tel 800-919-2252; Fax 760-746-7260. TEMPERATURES: High of 86 with a low of 63; with the water temperatures in the mid-80's. Cloudy with some north wind in the afternoon. BLUE MARLIN - Only a few this week. STRIPED MARLIN - No volume to speak of. YELLOWFIN TUNA - Good catches at East Cape close to shore for fish up 25 pounds with a few larger fish to 100 pounds. DORADO - Mostly scattered fish with a few schools close to the lighthouse at Punta Arena and the shark buoys near Punta Pescadero. SAILFISH - Number reported slowed considerably this week. ROOSTERFISH - Good catches of smaller fish. JACK CREVALLE - Plenty of jacks chasing sardines along the shore. BARRILLETE OR MEXICAN SKIPJACK - Good catches from the lighthouse to Punta Pescadero. PARGO AND CABRILLA - none caught this week. OFFSHORE: Weather change and more wind created unsettled conditions offshore. INSHORE: Tuna, skipjack and a few dorado continue to dominate the inshore. BEACH: Good catches of smaller roosters and jacks along the beach from La Capilla to Rooster Alley. QUICK COMMENT - Gary Meyers, Albuquerque, New Mexico spent his last East Cape day fishing from a cruiser seeking his first sailfish on the fly, but had to settle for tuna to 18 pounds instead. Marlene White, from Radford, Virginia, put her brand new Orvis 9-weight outfit through its paces landing a 10-pound skipjack as well as a 15-pound yellowfin tuna on her first day of saltwater fly-fishing.
Buena Vista, October 28, 2000. TEMPERATURES: High of 88 with a low of 64; with the water temperatures in the mid-80's. Some wind in the afternoon. BLUE MARLIN - Mostly smaller fish to 300 pounds. STRIPED MARLIN - A few more this week. YELLOWFIN TUNA - Good catches close to shore for fish up 25 pounds with one caught over 200 pounds. DORADO - Mostly scattered fish with a few schools close to the lighthouse at Punta Arena and the shark buoys near Punta Pescadero. SAILFISH - Continues to be the best billfish opportunity for East Cape fishing boats . ROOSTERFISH - Good catches with several larger fish lost. JACK CREVALLE - Plenty of jacks in front of La Ribera. BARRILLETE OR MEXICAN SKIPJACK - Good catches at the lighthouse and Punta Pescadero. PARGO AND CABRILLA - A few fish at Punta Colorada. OFFSHORE: Wind offshore caused rougher than usual sea conditions this week. INSHORE: Tuna continue to be the best bet with a few dorado as well. BEACH: Good catches of smaller roosters and jacks at Punta Ignaticio mid day.
QUICK COMMENT - Gary Meyers, Albuquerque, New Mexico, fishing at East Cape on the pontoon boat with Ray Barker Smith, a frequent guest who just came in from England, had an exciting day fishing tuna. The yellowfin stayed up around the pontoon boat just a half mile out front of actor Scott Glenn's house for over two hours. They landed several black skipjack in the 15 pound class that were potential IGFA records if they had not released them. Back near shore, Ray hooked what he described as his personal best rooster only to have the 15-pound leader part after a few minutes. Jeff Littlejohn, fishing from a panga, had a spectacular day catching a number of dorado and tuna on his 8-weight before a large dorado turned his 4-piece rod into a 7-piece rod. Snap, crackle and pop!
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: EL CARDONAL'S HIDEAWAY, El Cardonal, October 30, 2000, Eddy, Reservations 011-52-114-10040. This week we had "Bill" a returning guest and one of our hard fishermen. So far, in three days, 4 dorado 20-40 pound, lots of tuna, barriletes and other fish. He's in pursuit of big marlin today.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: BUENA VISTA BEACH RESORT, Buena Vista, October 23-29, Axel Valdez, Reservations 800-752-3555. October 23rd to 29th , 2000 Boats out: 72. Weather: Low 80's -High 80's. Water Temperature: 71- 80. It has been cool in the mornings. Up north has been good for blue marlin and sailfish, also close to shore in front of Punta Pescadero it has been good for small tuna. To the south it has been good also for tuna and dorado Successful lures: Chivato (orange/yellow), Purpuras (purple/black), green/black and they are also trying the petrolero (black/orange) hoochies and rapalas. Bait Used: Sardine is what is bringing the tuna and dorado up to bite, but our captains are also getting a lot of the little jacks because of the sails in the area.
Fishing results (kept/released): Blue Marlin 1/0; Striped Marlin 0/0; Sailfish 11/0; Dorado 49/29; Shark 0/1; Tuna 144/4; Roosterfish 0/12; Wahoo 0/0; Skip Jack 0/41; Bass/Grouper 10/0; Jack Crevalle 0/22; Red Snapper 10/6; Needlefish 0/15; Pompano 0/0; Triggerfish 24/0
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: RANCHO LEONERO, Bahia de Palmas, October 28, 2000, John Ireland and Roy Baldwin, Reservations 800-646-2252; Hotel 011-52-114-10216. Great conditions continue, with daytime highs about 85, evening lows in the mid 60's, calm seas (2 windy days early in the week) with cooling water temp in the low 80's. Extraordinary fishing continues, with yellowfin tuna, big dorado, sailfish, striped and blue marlin dominating the action. Fly and light tackle inshore fishing remains wide open. The strong dorado bite continues, with schools of larger fish up to 55 lbs under shark buoys or floating debris taking live sardinas and marlin lures. The tuna bite continues on, with easy limits of schooling fish averaging 10 lbs (largest 35 lbs) inside mixed in with skipjack, taking mostly live sardinas. Lots of sailfish were taken, from 1 to 6 miles offshore, exclusively taking live caballitos and big sardinas. The striped and blue marlin bite at East Cape remains consistent, with fish taken daily on small live tuna, or green/black or bleeding mackerel pattern trolled lures. Lots of roosterfish and pargo to 30 lbs, sierra and jacks were taken inshore, taking hoochies and live sardinas.
Mark Ross & Ron Humphries of Anglers Edge Tackle of Lakeside, CA, while fishing 1 day on a cruiser, took a 160 lb sail, dorado to 45 lbs, and limits of tuna.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: EAST CAPE SPORT FISHING, Los Barriles, October 27, 2000, Dave Dixon and Gil Mendiaz, Reservations 800-837-1556; Fax 805-493-5446. North winds have started blowing in the East Cape, currently being reported at 15 knots. Coupled to this is a drop in water temperature, now averaging below 85 degrees and falling. Still, fishing remains excellent for those willing to brave the winds. Football tuna are being found in abundance on the outside of La Ribera and Punta Pescadero. This same region is also producing 15 to 30-lb dorado on the troll. The shark buoys to the north are pumping out lots of BIG dorado, to 50+ pounds. A few sailfish and marlin are being taken, but billfish have slowed overall.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: HOTELS PALMAS DE CORTEZ, PLAYA DEL SOL, PUNTA COLORADA, East Cape, October 24-26, 2000, reported by Dave "Smokey" Manuel, East Cape Smokehouse, Hotel Reservations, 800-368-4334. I haven't had to say this for a long time, but after the last three days it's time...fishing was lousy! Not that there weren't fish caught, there were of course, but the counts were down, way down, and all because of "El Norte". He's back! (gender neutral) We had our first taste of the winter phenomenon here on the East Cape referred to as "El Norte", which is when we receive winds out of the North for periods of 2 to 4 days and sometimes longer. These winds generally develop late morning and blow through mid to late afternoon, then subside by sunset, only to regenerate again the next day. Sometimes it blows a little, sometimes it blows a lot. Sometimes it's a little rough, sometimes it's down right nasty. The past few days was somewhere in the middle. It has been unsettled and windy since last week, but Tuesday was the first day the wind started and continued out of the North, generating small rollers. Those swells ran all night and sure enough Wednesday we got it full blast. Many charters returned to the dock after only a few hours, others toughed it out and fished, but few had much to show for it, except for soaked T-shirts and wobbly legs. Thursday was an improvement, with only light North winds, so I'll take that as a sign it's going to be a great weekend weather wise. Water temps remain warm, with readings off the dock all week right at 83 degrees, but I expect temps to begin dropping. In addition to the North winds which cool the water, our daytime and nighttime temps are becoming fall like. We've had low to mid 80's in daytime and readings as low as 73 degrees at night, so all this should reflect in cooler water soon. As far as fishing goes, the only consistent thing to mention the last few days is the Tuna bite just North of Los Barriles, near Punta Pescadero. We call it the Tuna Hole, the Pyramids or the Slides and it's just off shore, only a short trip from the hook. Most of what I'm seeing from this bite are small Tuna under 15 lbs taken on Sardines, but an occasional lunker has come out also. One on Thursday was over 60 lbs, another over the 100 lb mark. Other than that, fishing has been scattered and spotty.
LA PAZ, MEXICO: JONATHAN ROLDAN'S ADVENTURE SERVICES, La Paz, October 30, 2000,Jonathan Roldan, Tel 626-333-3355; Fax 626-333-0115; Pager 323-349-8111; Message Pager 877-310-7734. We had kind of a slow week here this week. I think it's the slump before we get all the vacation anglers for Thanksgiving. It's kind of too bad because the fish are certainly willing to go at La Paz. However, it all depends on where you're fishing. Some of the usual La Paz hot spots went cold this week, but other spots were still kicking. I didn't have any boats out of La Paz this week, but monitoring the action, I know that some private boaters fishing the east side of Espiritu Santo got blanked except for some stray football tuna. On the West side, however, a spot of dorado showed up for two days, then went off the radar screen. Over at Arenas, on the other hand, there's still a great jag of late season sailfish going on. Some days, it's hard NOT to get bit at least once by a billfish. Again, not so many dorado as the ocean seems to be cooling a bit, but tuna from 10-50 pounds can still be found at Punta Sur, Punta Perrico and straight out from Arenas to the drop-off. Wahoo are definitely here. Nothing made it back to the beach, but several guys got zinged on the Marauders and purple and black Rapalas but nothing stuck.
October 25, 2000. Got a bunch of bits and pieces reports to tell you about. They may sound a bit conflicting, but I'll tell you what it means to me. It says that the seasons are changing, that's all. There are some awesome days of fishing still ahead, but now and again, there's gonna be a down day or two or perhaps a bit more wind. Consequently, the fish might also move off a spot and it may take a day or two to find them. All in all, still pretty good if you know where to go and what you're doing.
First, had some reports that the fishing straight out of La Paz was a big fat goose-egg last week and smelled about like an old cracked one! Those weren't the exact words, but you get the idea. Those were from some private boaters working the west side of the Espiritu Santo Island. On the other hand, I had a few clients working the east side and while they didn't limit out on dorado, they got enough fish including a 40 pounder to fill the chest and topped it off with some nice butterball punk tuna. Also, there's a spot in the channel up north of Isolotes that are holding alot of sailfish, but most day boats can't make it up that far unless they have some serious guns in the horsepower.
Speaking of sailfish, however, got a sailfish rodeo going on off Las Arenas/ Cerralvo. Like everything else, I don't know how long it will last, but as of my writing this, I'd bet my favorite fishing hat to you that you'd get a sailfish hookup right now trolling either a lure or live bait fishing south end of the island or drifting about midway through the channel. Nothing big, mind you, but fun fish on light tackle. As for other species, dorado bite slacked a bit. Still a fish or two per boat, but not the madness that we had the past 3 weeks with schools of dodos tearing into the fleet like German fighter planes jumping a squad of bombers, but you're still going to rack some fillets for the freezer. Best bet at La Paz are the tuna which have been in the spotlight all season for the area. Big ones, small ones, medium ones. . ..sounds like Cheech Marin in the movie "Dusk Before Dawn." It's the same old story. Small fish on top. Fish the flyline sardine. Big fish down low. .. tie on a rubbercore sinker. It's Huck Finn fishing and as uncomplicated as that! Below is an excerpt from my Hawaii friend, Pat Rose who goes with her husband, Dr. Nat Rose to fish Las Arenas area all the time and knows it as well as anyone. Kinda shows you the variety of what's happening right now.
Get the idea, amigos? Good! By the way, if anyone is interested, I'm putting together a group to go tangle with cabrilla, pargo and yellowtail in April. If you'd like details, fire me back and e-mail! Tight lines! Jonathan
LA PAZ, MEXICO: HOTEL LAS ARENAS, Punta Arena de la Ventana, October 1, 2000, Linda Glassman-Davis, Reservations 888-644-7376. Captain's: Jorge, Roman (Romeo), Ramon Lucero, Ramiro, Johnny, Tolon, Fidel, Luciano, Guicho, Cachorra, M. Salvador, Chuy, Buho, Israel, Efren, Daniel, Loreto, Israel, Valente and Beto. Fishing still hot and the weather's been great with light wind. Fishing results this week: 135 Tuna, 108 Dorado-56 pound bull, 2 Pargo-8 pounds, 2 Marlin-largest-striped 176 pounds, 4 Amberjack-24 pounds.
LORETO, MEXICO: VILLAS DE LORETO, Loreto, November 1, 2000, Wendy Wilchynski, Reservations Tel/Fax 011-52-113-50586. Dear Gene. Just talked with a couple of fellows that told me the fishing is great! Lots of hook ups and catching too. Cabrilla, grouper, and dorado to name a few! Let everyone know! Wendy.
LORETO, MEXICO: ARTURO'S SPORT FISHING, Loreto, October 24, 2000, Arturo Susarrey, Reservations Tel 011-52-113-50766; Fax 011-52-113-50022. WEATHER:The weather is starting to change and we will not have more south winds for the rest of this season. The last 3 days in Loreto we have been west breezes, this means that the north wind season will start in any moment. DORADO: With this report we say goodbye to this fish for this year, because there are some of them in the area but only little ones. YELLOWTAIL: These arrived here early in a good number but no big ones yet, 12 lbs. more or less and there are in San Bruno and El Pulpito. CABRILLA & RED SNAPPER: Same yellowtail places, some days good fishing but some days not too much. ROOSTERFISH: Trolling with mackerel close to the beach in El Mangle or San Juanico north to Loreto size, 25 lbs. BAIT: It is available to buy for $1.00 each or to catch it in the morning at Coronado Island.
LORETO, MEXICO: EL FUERTE SPORT FISHING, Puerto Escondido, October 25, 2000, Ty Miller, Reservations Tel 714-775-6658; Fax: 714-755-3501; Loreto 011-52-113-30863. Hola Amigos. Water temperature, 80. Air temperature, 85. Winds northerly at 10 mph. Seastate: Mild. We are back once again and ready to kick off the Fall/Winter season. Returned this past weekend from the Tuna Jackpot Tournament in Cabo San Lucas with empty pockets but had a blast! Western Outdoors put a great tournament together this year and we look forward to the next!
Well, we just got off the water today and Loreto fishing is looking very promising for an early season on the Yellowtail, Amberjack, Cabrilla and the hopes of these Tuna that are just to the South of us in La Paz to make a showing. Water temperature dropped SEVEN degrees in the past week to between 80 and 81 degrees. This could be the makings of an awesome Fall/Winter bite. Water clarity is good and everywhere you look you will find bait up on top ranging from the little guys all the way up to Sardinitas, Flyers and Bullet Tuna.
Okay, here's the scoop at our end! There are still some peanut size Dorado hanging around off the backside of Isla Carmen between White Cliffs and Punta Perico and lately some decent size (16 to 20) pound fish hanging around the Wash Rock area off Isla Monzerate. If you still have Dorado fever, plan on working most of the day to get your limits, fish are few and far between.
The Yellowtail bite (firecrackers) off of Isla Danzante has fizzled but there have been some "homeguard toad Yellowtail" being plucked off our local reefs, Six Mile, Secret Spot and Punta Baja. There also has been a very early showing of Skipjack this season which is great news because the Skippys typically mingle with the migrating Yellowtail. With the temperature dropping the Cabrilla have started to pick up the pace a bit with some nice fish scored today on both the bait and the iron.
A few Billfish have been showing their faces around these parts with Ron and Chris Pearson (Fuel Pusher) picking up a Sailfish this morning off of Wash Rock, and Van Pomeroy (Orca) doubling up on a Striper and a Sail just the other day.
Bait is back to a no-brainer just around the corner from Punta Coyote and out anywhere in the 175 to 200 ft. range. Mostly Green Macks are being made and you couldn't ask for a more perfect size bait to boot.
So, we are in somewhat of a transition period at this moment so let's hope for the best because all the right signs are here and if I can remember correctly the last time I mentioned that back in May we ended up with an awesome Summer season. So let's keep the streak going! Hasta Luego!
LORETO, MEXICO: BAJA BIG FISH COMPANY, Loreto, October 29, 2000, Pam Bolles, Reservations Tel/Fax 011-52-113-50448. The weather has definitely been changing. The final transition into winter at Loreto will probably take place in a few weeks. Until then, we will continue to transition and experience unpredictable weather. We have been having nice, warm days which cool considerably as soon as the sun sets. Typical desert-like weather. Daytime highs have been in the mid to high 80's (F) and early morning lows in the low 70's (F). Evenings are sweater weather, and early mornings out on the water will require a jacket and perhaps long pants to keep the comfort level up there. Dress in layers if you're headed out to fish these days. The skies have been partly cloudy the past week, with the exception of Friday (10/27) which was completely overcast and cold (well, for us anyway). We're seeing North winds now and we had pure "Nortes" all day on Friday. Today (Saturday 10/28) is very pleasant in the wind department. Most of the week though, we've been seeing West winds changing to North winds (that's pure transition weather). The water surface has been calm in the mornings but only if you're referring to the marina up to the Islands (Carmen and Coronado). Beyond the islands the swells have been sizeable due to the winds we've been getting. Today (Saturday 10/28) has showed a reversal into more calm seas. The surface temps offshore are in the low 80's (F).
We are moving out of the storm season into our winter season. During winter the winds prevail from the North. During the Summer they prevail from the South. That's 180 degrees difference in direction. The prevailing wind direction dosen't change overnight. It takes several weeks to change. During this transitional time. the winds are very unpredictable. They can blow in four different directions in the one day and be completely calm the next. Obviously the best fishing conditions are the latter. We'll let you know when the winter wind patterns set in for the season.
Proposed Marine Park Use Fee: The Loreto Marine Park is proposing a use fee of 50 pesos for every person who will be using the park. What we're told is that every national park in Mexico will be charging a use fee, and our Marine Park is a national park too. Details are still being worked out, but it is supposed to be a one-time fee (users will not be charged daily). This is supposed to come into effect in November (exactly when I'm not sure yet). I will keep you posted on the use fee as the facts come in...
Dorado fishing is clearly thinning out for the season. There are a few fish coming in but they are small and few. The fish have been caught east of Isla Carmen near Punta Perico. Limits are not common and the fish are small weighing in at only 10-15 pounds. Now we're focusing more on the Yellowtail.
I'm not hearing anything about Sailfish. You should know what that means, they're heading South for the winter.
We're continuing to see Yellowtail in pretty good numbers, but with the windy weather and choppy seas we had the past week the quantity has been lower than it should be. The fish are in two major locations: There are small firecrackers in the 12-15 pound range to the North off Las Almejas and San Bruno. To the South a few miles off Punta Baja, much larger fish are coming in with good frequency. I'm talking 37 pounders! That's big for this early in the season. The fish are schooling deep in both locations at about 150-200 feet. Most anglers are fishing with live bait weighted and sent to the bottom. I prefer to fish heavy jigs as they're productive too and I think it beats sitting there waiting for something to strike.
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: TONY REYES FISHING TOURS, 6-day Midriff Islands trip ending October 27, 2000, aboard the San Felipe panga mothership, Jose Andres , Tony Reyes, Exclusive booking agent, The Longfin, 714-538-8010. Water temperatures 80-85. Monday we could not fish due to bad weather. Tuesday we made bait at Morro Blanco and moved to fish Isla San Lorenzo in the morning and Isla Salsipuedes in the afternoon. Wednesday we made bait at San Francisquito and again fished San Lorenzo in the morning and Salsipuedes in the afternoon. Thursday, we made bait and fished at Isla Partida, and in the afternoon we began running north. Friday we fished the Islas Encantadas without bait and returned to San Felipe. Fishing results: 227 yellowtail 25-30 pounds; 119 cabrilla 12-18 pounds; 107 goldspotted bass; 10 sierra 3-4 pounds; 7 dorado 19-35 pounds; 7 pargo 18-20 pounds; 7 sheephead 4-6 pounds; 5 shark 20-25 pounds; 2 broomtail grouper 12-12 pounds; 1 grouper 39 pounds.