East Cape charter boats find offshore and inshore sportfishing action

Mexico Fishing News, June 17, 2002



EAST CAPE, MEXICO: With Cabo San Lucas sluggish on all species, the East Cape area provided Baja Sur's best action last week, on striped marlin, dorado, and large roosterfish, plus another unusual run of bonefish at La Ribera, reported Sunday by Gary Graham of BAJA ON THE FLY.

Graham caught bonefish near the same spot last September, just before Hurricane Juliette blasted the beaches and blew out the boca of the La Ribera estuary, presumably ruining that very special spot. Apparently, however, whatever it is that attracts bonefish to that particular beach is still in effect. Said Baja IGFA representative Graham: "I and my partner caught more than a dozen during a Father's Day outing, before we moved down to Punta Arena for roosterfish.

"Here at East Cape, it is the best roosterfishing I have seen for the larger fish. I can safely say there have been more roosters caught from the beach on fly this year than ever before. I am sure the removal of the nets has something to do with it."

Graham said clients caught jack crevalle, pargo--and roosterfish up to 40 pounds--from the beach last week, in addition to offshore catches of dorado, tuna, and black skipjack. Generally, Graham said the near shore and beach fishing action looks to be even better than it has for the past couple of months. "Dorado, sailfish, and wahoo have moved in on the color line near Punta Arena. While fishing the beach yesterday, I could see large dorado, I mean 45 pounds plus, chasing bait about 50 feet outside my casting range. The day before, we saw a sailfish doing the same thing."

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Chris Moyers of EAST CAPE SMOKEHOUSE, reporting for the Van Wormer resorts of HOTELS PALMAS DE CORTEZ, PLAYA DEL SOL, PUNTA COLORADA, and for other combined fleets, said 497 boats chartered last week had a combined catch including released fish of: 22 blue marlin, 491 striped marlin, 1 black marlin, 1 sailfish, 359 dorado, 32 yellowfin tuna, 28 pargo, 1 snapper, 4 wahoo, 13 amberjack, 4 pompano, 1 cabrilla, 39 roosterfish, and 2 sierra.

Moyers reported East Cape weather in the high-90s, and water temperatures of 80 to 84 degrees. Winds were light with generally calm seas.

Last week, Moyers said, the largest fish caught out of Palmas de Cortez was a 426-pound blue marlin. The season's first black marlin, weighing 232 pounds, was also caught.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: John Ireland of RANCHO LEONERO said 61 boats chartered last week had a combined catch including released fish of: 3 blue marlin to 450 pounds, 41 striped marlin to 150 pounds, 45 dorado to 50 pounds, 12 amberjack to 60 pounds, 16 roosterfish to 65 pounds, 2 yellowfin tuna to 25 pounds, 15 pompano to 20 pounds, and 10 pargo to 25 pounds.

Ireland said boats are seeing lots of jumpers and tailers concentrated to the north, about 5 to 8 miles off Punta Pescadero. The dorado were being found in both directions, he said, both off Punta Pescadero and south off Cabo Pulmo.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: At Rancho Buena Vista, Tami Moyeous said 19 boats chartered during the week had a combined catch including released fish of: 23 striped marlin (18 released), 1 blue marlin, 6 dorado, 1 pargo, 9 mako shark, and "a big fat grouper."

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: VISTA SEA SPORT'S Mark Rayor rated diving conditions at Cabo Pulmo a solid "ten," with blue clear water and 77 degrees at depth. "Huge schools of bigeye jacks are trying to steal the show," Rayor said. "It gets dark when thousands of them pass over you. Look in another direction, and you see grouper in excess of 200 pounds, schools of bat rays, giant sting rays, and clouds of reef fish."

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: To the north, at EL CARDONAL'S HIDEAWAY, Eddy Beaulne said hotel guests are cleaning up on dorado, and striped marlin, and roosterfish caught right in front of the hotel. "In the last 33 days, 30 striped marlin were hooked," Beaulne said.

Beaulne said "tin boat" anglers, Bill and Len, fished from the hotel's 14-foot aluminum rental boat for a month, 10 to 12 hours a day, and released over 20 marlin, many dorado, and a "wahoo that could have been a world record" on 20-pound line. Another hotel guest had a school of mullet jump over his kayak, followed by the roosterfish that was chasing them, Beaulne said.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: On a darker note, a reliable source who wished to remain anonymous reported that at least one panga has been gill netting the East Cape beaches illegally at night. This is in violation of the recent banning of gill nets in this area.

This illegal panga, a beat-up older boat with a 65-horsepower OMC motor, was not known to local residents of La Ribera. It was observed pulling its nets in the morning at least five times during the last few weeks just north of Punta Arena. Anyone observing this panga is requested to get its "MAT" number, if it has one, the exact time and place it is observed, and report it to Baja Beat at gene@bajadestinations.com. This information, when confirmed, will be sent directly to the proper official at PROFEPA in Mexico City.

In other mainland Mexico and Baja fishing action this week:



ENSENADA, MEXICO: Albacore were found within 30 miles of Punta Banda last week, and local yellowtail and bottom fishing remained good to excellent.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Sammy Susarrey of LILY FLEET said the Tamara fished at the end of the week, 30 miles off Isla Todos Santos on a heading of 250 degrees, and found 28 albacore. Nineteen fish hit zucchini, purple, and orange feathers, and 9 were caught on live bait.

Inside, Lily Fleet boats were limiting out on red rockfish, cow cod to 12 pounds, salmon grouper, sand bass, calico bass, barracuda, and continued big lingcod to 19 pounds. Yellowtail to 20 pounds were also caught about 140 feet deep, Susarrey said.

Note: Susarrey said his old email address is being discontinued by Telnor, and asked all W.O.N. readers to use his new address: lilyssportfishing@hotmail.com.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: At SERGIO'S ENSENADA SPORTFISHING CENTER, Sergio Susarrey said the Ensenada Clipper checked in Sunday afternoon with 20 passengers and a catch of: 45 albacore, 5 yellowtail, and 25 bonito.

On Saturday, the Ensenada Clipper with 30 passengers caught 85 albacore. El Cazador with 10 passengers caught: 45 albacore, and 1 yellowtail. The Shir Lee with 8 passengers caught: 47 albacore.

On Friday, El Cazador with 12 passengers caught: 65 albacore, 5 yellowtail, and 30 bonito.

Susarrey said local fishing remained good for lingcod, barracuda, and sandbass. Sergio's Sport Fishing Center is now offering daily departures to the outer banks, with boats leaving at 2 a.m. and returning at 6 p.m. Reservations are recommended, Susarrey said.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Tecate trailer boat angler BARNEY PHILLIPS fished his boat Mako out of Marina Coral on Friday with his son Lance, and daughter-in-law Paula, finding limits of albacore on a windy day.

"We spent the night inside the harbor," Phillips said. "We told Mike at the bait receiver that we would see him about 4:30 a.m., but woke up earlier and picked up bait at 3:30.

"Outside the island by 4:30, we were seeing white caps, not good. By daylight there was a northwest wind and heavy seas. Our first jig stop was at 8:50 a.m. in 57.9-degree temperature, at 117 degrees 12 minutes, and 31 degrees 41 minutes, for 3 albies. They were small, 15 to 18 pounds.

"Then we found water at 60.4 degrees which was holding fish. The best numbers were 117:19 to 117:15, by 31:39 to 31:37.

"We limited out by 11 a.m. and headed in. The water was rough but the color was nice. We had 3 nice fish that were 25 to 27 pounds, and one wet boat ride."



PUERTO SANTO TOMAS, MEXICO: Sam Saenz of the PUERTO SANTO TOMAS RESORT said both surface and bottom fishing picked up last week in warming weather and water temperatures. "We're catching yellowtail, bonita, and barracuda within 5 miles of the village," Saenz said. "Some fish are being caught a quarter-mile from shore, near the kelp beds. Some of the yellowtail are going to 25 pounds, and the bottom fishing has been great for lingcod, whitefish, and rockcod."



SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Gene Allshouse of SAN QUINTIN SPORTFISHING said the albacore are only 18 to 25 miles outside the bay, but were finicky on the bite last week. Few boats were running outside. Allshouse said, "I expect that to change this coming weekend. I have some real hardcore tuna fishermen coming in, and I expect the albacore report to improve dramatically."

SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Jim Harer of the Old Mill Hotel said some boats stayed inside the bay at midweek, due to windy conditions. Roy Wilson and friend Chuck fished for halibut with Kelly Catian's EL CAPITAN SPORTFISHING.

SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: On Saturday, the winds calmed down, Harer said, and El Capitan and PEDRO'S PANGAS boats got outside for easy limits on lingcod, red rockfish, and ocean whitefish. The catch of the week was a 25-pound lingcod by Old Mill regular, Mike Dowdell of San Diego.



MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: Air and water temperatures remained cool in windy conditions last week. Gary Graham of BAJA ON THE FLY reported San Carlos weather between 60 and 72 degrees, and water temperatures of 60 to 66 degrees. Some yellowtail were reported at the entrada, and some corvina were also being caught in the mangrove channels.



CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Fishing at the tip of Baja California was slow last week, in unusually low water temperatures, and windy conditions on the Pacific side.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Tommy Garcia of CABO MAGIC commented, "Many skunks this past week, and many seasick passengers and guests." Garcia reported on 31 boats chartered during the week with a combined catch including released fish of: 9 striped marlin, 5 dorado, 14 yellowfin tuna, 2 skipjack, 9 roosterfish (including a 40-pounder), 2 sierra, 1 jack crevalle, 1 manta ray (released), and 1 mako shark.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of CORTEZ YACHT CHARTERS said GAVIOTA FLEET boats found their best action by punching upwind to the Jaime Bank and beyond on the Pacific side. "The wind has been making the trek a bit difficult," Edwards said. Overall, Gaviota Fleet boats had a combined catch including released fish of: 40 striped marlin (35 released), 1 mako shark, 10 yellowfin tuna, 17 dorado, and 7 roosterfish.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Capt. George Landrum of FLY HOOKER SPORT FISHING said the unseasonably cool and windy weather was in the mid-80s last week, and water temperatures near Cabo San Lucas were down in the low to mid-60s.

"Early in the week, the marlin fishing was so poor as to be almost non-existent," Landrum said. "I would have to say the percentage of successful boats was around 10 percent. Most of the fish found were on the Sea of Cortez side, up past the Gorda banks area, but a few boats that were willing to go the distance and get beat up found fair results on the Pacific."

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Other fleet and independent reports, totaling about 150 boats, reported a combined catch of about: 48 striped marlin, 1 blue marlin, 55 black skipjack, 3 amberjack, 52 dorado, 22 jack crevalle, and 11 roosterfish.



SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Water temperatures averaged about 68 to 70 degrees, and most boats were finding their best action to the northeast toward Los Frailes, Eric Brictson of GORDO BANKS PANGAS reported.

"Due to rougher offshore conditions anglers opted to fish closer to shore and had good results on roosterfish while slow trolling with live mullet," Brictson said. "Though several anglers reported the release of as many as 8 roosters, the average was more like 2, 3, or 4 fish, with most fish being in the 15 to 25-pound class."

Brictson said local La Playita panga fleets reported good numbers of amberjack on the Inner Gordo Bank. "The fish were line shy though," Brictson said. "The most affective way to hook them was drifting a live mullet on light tackle of 20 to 30-pound test. Pangas reported from 2 to 7 fish per day, most 20 to 30 pounds, but including one impressive 76-pounder skillfully landed on 20-pound tackle by Sherry Bravo of the San Diego area."

SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: BOB GRIMES reported a new outbreak of gill nets near San Jose del Cabo, saying that he had counted 5 nets in a 6-mile stretch of beach between La Playita and Punta Gorda recently. "Other Mexican pangueros who are trying to make a living from constantly diminishing resources have told me that they are cutting some of the gill nets," Grimes said. "They say that now that it is prime roosterfish season, the nets are killing a lot of pez gallo, most of which are then discarded as bycatch."



LA PAZ, MEXICO: Mino Shiba of MOSQUITO FLEET said some dorado were being caught last week, from 15 to 45 pounds, with some bigger ones caught on trolled feathers. Good numbers of pargo to 10 pounds are being caught from the rocks and a few marlin are being seen. Shiba said fishing was generally improved last week, which had some windy mornings, but with calm afternoons.

LA PAZ, MEXICO: Jonathan Roldan of TAIL HUNTER INTERNATIONAL said the fishing has been up-and-down. "One boat can get 5 dorado and the boat right next to it might get skunked," he said. "The majority of the bite has been dorado and most of them are nice-sized fish from 15 to 40 pounds."

LA PAZ, MEXICO: At HOTEL LAS ARENAS, Linda Glassman-Davis said over 100 medium dorado were caught by hotel pangas last week, "right off the end of Cerralvo Island." The hotel was also announcing a new website featuring real-time reservations, plus a monthly sweepstakes drawing, at www.lasarenas.com. She said work has also begun on paving the hotel's 6,000-foot runway.



LORETO, MEXICO: Arturo Susarrey of ARTURO'S SPORT FISHING reported windy and cloudy conditions last week with air temperatures peaking at about 87 degrees. Dorado action was generally slow until the weekend when Capt. Marcelo caught a 45-pounder and Capt. Antonio caught 3 fish to 35 pounds, about 10 miles outside Isla Coronado. Some cabrilla and sailfish were also being caught around Isla Carmen, Susarrey said.



MULEGE, MEXICO: Tin boat angler CHARLIE HILLMAN of Ventura just got back from 6 weeks at Punta Chivato, where work is proceeding on his new ramada. Hillman fished from his 15-foot Gregor, and had good action on dorado, giant squid, barracuda, goldspotted bass, triggerfish, black skipjack, yellowtail, and "lots of miscellaneous" fish in water temperatures up to 80 degrees. The best dorado action was between Isla San Marcos and Isla Tortuga, Hillman said, and the weather was outstanding. Winds kept him off the water only one day.



BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: GEORGE LOWE of Vista, CA took a kayak fishing trip to Bahia de las Animas and San Francisquito, and just missed meeting the famous "Naked Girls of Las Animas" annual high school group by one day.

At San Francisquito, Lowe and his partner camped near the resort palapas for a week and found fair fishing for inshore species, including a big yellowtail that straightened the hooks on a Rebel Fastrac lure and got away.

Switching to pangas, they found good yellowtail action 10 miles south, and later had a blast catching 5-pound yellowtail from the beach on 6-pound test line. Lowe said they caught yellowtail right in front of the palapas, and there was "mucho small bait and sand crabs" in the area. The road from L.A. Bay was in good shape, except for a "large metal bar sticking out of the road about 10 miles south."

BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: At CAMP GECKO in Bahia de los Angeles, Abraham Vazquez said weather was nice and cool, in the mid-80s. Water temperatures were 65 to 69 degrees in the outer channels and 70 to 74 degrees in the bay. Vazquez reported good yellowtail fishing in the bay, although down just a bit from the previous week. "Lots of fish on the surface feeding and lots of bait balls and boils, with thousands of sea gulls feeding," Vazquez said. Most of the yellowtail were from 12 to 20 pounds, and they were being caught by casting iron to the boils.



SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: GORDON BYRNE reported on a 6-day Midriff Islands trip by the panga mothership, Captain Villegas, with charter master Steve Shook, returning to San Felipe on June 14 with a catch of: 1 black seabass of 265 pounds (kept after an attempted release failed), 383 cabrilla to 15 pounds, yellowtail to 30 pounds, 36 pargo to 10 pounds, 29 white seabass to 25 pounds, 2 grouper to 50 pounds, and over 120 giant squid to 40 pounds. The Captain Villegas fished at San Francisquito, Isla San Esteban, and the Enchanted Islands.

SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Tony Reyes of TONY REYES FISHING TOURS reported on a 6-day Midriff Islands trip by the panga mothership, Jose Andres, returning to San Felipe on June 14 with a catch of: 281 spotted bass; 215 cabrilla, 10 to 27 pounds; 159 yellowtail, 18 to 30 pounds; 59 squid, 15 to 34 pounds; 37 red snapper, 8 to 12 pounds; 7 sheephead, 8 to 10 pounds; 2 grouper, 44 pounds; and 21 white seabass, 18 to 25 pounds. Water temperatures averaged 70 degrees.

SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Gustavo Velez of BAJA SPORTFISHING, INC., reported on a 6-day Midriff Islands trip by the panga mothership, Erik, returning to San Felipe on June 14 with a catch of: 470 cabrilla in "good sizes"; 117 yellowtail, 35 to 40 pounds; 12 white seabass; 8 grouper to 85 pounds; 80 goldspotted bass; and 130 squid to 50 pounds. The Erik fished in good weather at Isla San Esteban, Isla San Lorenzo, Isla Partida, San Francisquito, Isla la Raza, Refugio, and the Golden Reef. Velez said the boat saw "very plentiful" dorado south of San Francisquito, but anglers elected to fish for yellowtail instead.



MAZATLAN, MEXICO: Nora Alonzo Rice of ARIES SPORTFISHING FLEET at Marina el Cid, reported on 26 boats chartered during the week with a combined catch including released fish of: 55 sailfish, 1 striped marlin, 13 dorado, and 1 blue marlin. The dorado were caught to 55 pounds, Alonzo Rice said. "Yesterday I went fishing on the boat La Gloria. We went to the buoy located at 220 degrees and 15 miles from the harbor. We caught some bonitas and used them as live bait, trolling around the buoy. We caught 4 big dorados, around 45 pounds each."



IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Stan Lushinsky of IXTAPA SPORTFISHING CHARTERS said winds closed the port early last week, but boats resumed fishing as conditions improved. Catches included a 250-pound blue marlin, bonito, amberjack, roosterfish, and sailfish. Three sailfish were tagged by clients fishing with Capt. Chico Garcia on the super panga Llamarada. Ixtapa weather was in the 90s, with plenty of humidity, and the best fishing area was about 10 miles offshore, Lushinsky reported.

IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Ed Kunze of MAR Y TIERRA SPORTFISHING said very few anglers were in town. "I counted only 4 boats leaving the dock this morning," he said at week's end. Kunze called the sailfish action fairly good, and tuna and roosterfish excellent. "Brian Berny of New Mexico fished with Luis Marcial on the Gringo Loco and had a typical 2 days of fishing," Kunze said. "On the first day, they got 6 tuna to 100 pounds and 3 sailfish. The second day had them with 4 roosterfish to 45 pounds. The tuna are about 22 miles out on a 180-degree heading, and the sailfish are 8 to 10 miles out in any direction."

IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Paul Phillips of the FINTASTIC TOTAL CATCH & RELEASE TOURNAMENT said boats are hooking an average of about 3 sailfish per day, and Capt. Arturo of the Whisky III reported dorado, "which haven't been in the area for over a month, and it is nice to see some."

Fish Photo 1

Gary Graham of East Cape's Baja On The Fly, with another rare Baja bonefish, caught from the beach at La Ribera. Graham caught bonefish at the same spot just before last September's Hurricane Juliette, and repeated on Sunday.

Fish Photo 1

Sherry Bravo of San Diego, landed this 76-pound amberjack on 20-pound tackle off San Jose del Cabo last week, baiting a live mullet with Gordo Banks Pangas.

Fish Photo 1

Oliver and Carolina Mason caught some nice dorado to 45 pounds with Alfredo's Sport Fishing at Loreto last week.

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