ENSENADA, MEXICO: Ivan Villarino of Vonny's Fleet at Ensenada said his beach-launched pangas got into a very strong spring surface bite for yellowtail at Punta Banda last week, mostly on the Ensenada-made aluminum surface jigs, for steady double-digit catches of fish running 12 to 24 pounds.
Jay Johnson of Ensenada went out with Capt. Beto on the Vonny I for 11 yellowtail including released fish on the same morning that Capt. Hector on the Vonny IV also scored 11 yellowtail hookups with angler Mateo Butto.
The week's top tally including released fish was for 22 yellowtail to 24 pounds by Bob and Ron Garrett with Capt. Beto. "All their fish were caught on the aluminum jigs," Villarino said. "They caught the yellowtail by casting on boils. On Thursday, Jay came in and said fishing was 'terrible' because he only landed 11 yellowtail, and then Mateo had the same story because he 'only' caught 11 too. Very funny. Then the next day Beto got 22 yellowtail. How's that for wide-open?"
Other anglers scoring their Mexican sportfishing limits of yellowtail with Capt. Hector during the week also including Jeff Shoe and Jeff Swuartz of Saratoga, Calif.
Ensenada fishing area weather was partly cloudy in the high-60s, with calm winds, ocean swells at 3 feet, and the water temperature at Punta Banda averaging 58 degrees.
ENSENADA, MEXICO: Steve Ross of the sportfishing boat Bad Dog out of Ensenada's Marina Coral reported on a run with Juan Lu aboard last week to a spot 35 miles to the northwest at 450 fathoms, or about 2,700 feet deep, for targeted blackgill rockfish, actually dropping to 1,739 feet with lighted ganions but finding just a couple of Humboldt giant squid. Several other drops of between 400 and 800 feet deep also produced no fish. Shallower fishing at Bajo San Miguel, the Isla Todos Santos kelp, the Ensenada tuna pens, and finally, a local "secret" spot also came up dry.
"At the end of the day, we were back at Marina Coral with lots of wind and 3 Humboldt squid," Ross said. Ensenada offshore fishing area weather was cold and blowing 15 knots, with a 5-foot swell and the water green at 56.9 degrees.
Ross described his very deep water fishing rig, saying, "The ganion had a Gulp 3-inch squid on every hook with an additional whole squid for a dual presentation. A small 4.5 red Cyalume light was attached to the top. After about 2 minutes we got our first strike. There was a constant pulling on our Berkley Braid 80-pound main line and I decided it was time to bring up the Mother Lode. It was 2 Humboldt squid."
Ross also noted that after returning to Marina Coral, the Bad Dog did manage to add a few more fish to the day's count. "Upon cleaning up, about 2 dozen mackerel showed up next to my boat," Ross said. "I began heavy chumming with cat food. They began to love it so we opened our live bait receiver and loaded 6 live ones before they got smart. So you can add 6 mackerel to our total count for the day. I once again confirmed that the way to catch blackgill rockfish is either to get lucky and drop bait on their heads, or soak a long line with hundreds of hooks over night."
ERENDIRA, MEXICO: Tere Castro of Castro's Camp at Erendira south of Ensenada reported on 27 boats fishing during the week for good counts of rockcod to 5 pounds, lingcod to about 14 pounds, and yellowtail being seen on the surface but still not biting. "The yellowtail have been very slow, but we have been able to see them," Castro said. Baja coastal fishing weather was good, with the water temperature at 57 degrees in the main fishing area about 6 miles out. Anglers fishing out of Castro's Camp included Balvina Olivas of Vista, Calif., and her son Ryan Olivas.
MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly said Capt. Enrique Soto of San Carlos reported larger yellowtail under birds outside the bay between the San Carlos entrada and Bahia Santa Maria. "They are under birds chasing sardines driven to the surface," Graham said. Some sierra mixed with smaller yellowtail were also feeding at the entrada. At Puerto Lopez Mateos, Bob Hoyt of Mag Bay Outfitters reported water temperatures rising, both on the open Pacific and inside the Magdalena Bay mangrove channels, but fishing inside was limited to a few grouper and pargo deep and some corvina on the surface. Magdalena Bay fishing area weather was clear in the low-90s, with water temperatures of 60 to 66 degrees.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported on 40 outings by Gaviota Fleet and the Cabo charter boats Fish Cabo, Fish Cabo I, and Tuna Time, with a catch including released fish of: 45 striped marlin, 28 dorado, 1 yellowfin tuna, and 1 roosterfish. "Stripers are all over the Cabo fishing area in good numbers, but it's difficult to get them to bite," Edwards said. "Early in the week the Fish Cabo had 8 stripers released for 3 fishing days." Cabo San Lucas sportfishing area weather was in the low-90s, with water temperatures averaging 75 degrees on the Pacific side and about 78 degrees on the Cortez side. Fleet boats found their best action on the Cortez side off Destiladeras and about 2 to 3 miles off Chileno. "Live bait was a must," Edwards said. "Very little was taken on lures."
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: For the week ending May 31, 2008, Tracy Ehrenberg of Pisces Fleet Sportfishing reported big seasonable swings in Cabo San Lucas fishing area weather and sea conditions and fish counts also variable, as 62 percent of charters landed a total of 120 striped marlin and sailfish, with all but 4 fish released. Eighty percent of charters landed all species combined. "Cabo fishing weather teetered between spring and summer," Ehrenberg said. "Most of the week was blustery, but when the wind died the fishing turned good. For the first time in as long as I can remember at this time of year, the port of Cabo San Lucas was closed, on May 22nd. In fact, sea conditions had been worse the day before so it seemed pretty pointless to close it when they did."
Inshore fishing up the Cortez side was productive for species including pompano, roosterfish, jack crevalle, skipjack tuna, a few cabrilla, and 1 yellowtail.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Tommy Garcia of Cabo Magic Sportfishing reported on 56 charters, with a catch including released fish of: 46 striped marlin, 33 dorado, 4 wahoo, 17 roosterfish, 16 sierra, 7 yellowfin tuna, 6 yellowtail, 2 snapper, 6 bonita, and 7 jack crevalle.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Jim Dillon of Salvador's Sportfishing reported on 9 outings by the Cabo San Lucas charter boats El Budster, El Budster I, and El Budster II, with a catch including released fish of: 8 striped marlin, 1 sailfish, 3 dorado of 30 to 35 pounds pounds, and 1 jack crevalle of 15 pounds.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Ramon Druck of the Cabo San Lucas charter sportfishing super panga Cheer's reported on 1 outing with anglers Jesus Montes and Fidencio Miguel Hernandez of Mexico City, for a catch including released fish of: 15 bonito of 5 to 6 pounds, and 1 marlin lost after a fight lasting about 10 minutes. The Cheer's fished inshore along Cabo's Pacific side beaches and farther out for marlin and dorado in water temperatures of 70 to 71 degrees and some mixed sea conditions. Druck noted that few anglers were present in the Cabo San Lucas area. "In these days, there aren't many people going out," he said. "This week, I had just this one day of fishing."
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Mike Connolly of the Pisces Fleet Sportfishing charter boat Falcon reported on 3 outings with Capt. Manuel during the week, for a combined catch including released fish of: 4 striped marlin, and 2 large dorado.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Durance Lowendick of Marlin Masters Sportfishing at Cabo San Lucas reported good numbers of striped marlin present on the Sea of Cortez side and most boats with 1 to 3 releases per outing. Fishing conditions on Cabo's Pacific side were also improving. "A recent band of warm water has pushed into the Pacific around Cabo's land's end which should generate renewed action on the Jaime Bank and Golden Gate seamounts," Lowendick said. Inshore fishing was solid for roosterfish, sierra mackerel, and yellowtail, plus some large jack crevalle into the 50-pound class caught while chasing bait fish just off the beach.
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Grant Hartman of the Baja Anglers Cabo San Lucas fly fishing service reported Cabo inshore action with some slow periods but roosterfish catches averaging about 9 gallos on the fly per outing plus a mix of jack crevalle, sierra, and lots of ladyfish. Cabo San Lucas offshore fishing was spotty for tuna and dorado, but steady on striped marlin in a week that saw Baja Anglers with an unusual double release of 2 boated marlin by Hartman and angler Don Anderson as they jumped into the water and swam with the fish. "Don Anderson and his girlfriend Lauren Streckrus from Baltimore had a fun morning catching roosterfish, jacks, and sierra on the fly, but after a while we decided to head out for marlin," Hartman said. "We hooked 2 marlin on spinning and conventional tackle. We landed Don's fish and both jumped in the water and released it. Back on the boat it was Lauren's turn to land her fish, so in the water we go again and we released it."
CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: George Landrum of Fly Hooker Sportfishing at said Cabo San Lucas fishing area weather and water conditions were recovering rapidly from being churned by strong winds early in the month. "Cabo experienced a rapid improvement this week with a major push of warm water from the north," Landrum said. "This warm water displaced much of the cold green water around the cape." Water temperatures were found up to 78 degrees to the south of Cabo, 84 degrees on the Cortez side, and 86 degrees up toward East Cape. Striped marlin and dorado counts were steady, but yellowfin tuna were not caught in significant numbers. "Quite a few boats have been looking specifically for tuna but results have been very poor," Landrum said. "Wahoo were the big surprise this week as they followed the warm water. I am really looking forward to some blue and black marlin this summer."
SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Eric Brictson of Gordo Banks Pangas reported on 76 combined La Playita fleet pangas fishing out of San Jose del Cabo, with a catch including released fish of: 205 mostly juvenile roosterfish, 204 various snappers, 38 striped marlin, 61 dorado, 11 yellowfin tuna, 8 wahoo, 98 sierra, 8 yellowtail, 7 amberjack, 14 bonito, and 18 jack crevalle. "The annual Los Cabos run of larger roosterfish during the first part of June has yet to develop," Brictson said. "There are only a scattering of larger roosterfish being encountered by trolling the inshore surf zone with their preferred live mullet bait. Perhaps by next week we will have better reports in this department." On June 1st, the annual La Playita dorado tournament had about 35 pangas and cruisers competing, with about 15 larger fish weighed and the top prize going to angler Gary Weiss of Santa Monica, Calif., for a 45.5-pound dorado caught with Gordo Banks Pangas Capt. Chame Pino on the panga Killer. "It was caught on a bolito bait at the San Luis Bank," Brictson said. San Jose del Cabo fishing area weather was clear and pleasant at 90 degrees, with water clarity fluctuating daily and the water temperature at 74 to 78 degrees.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Ana Lizeth Velazquez of Buena Vista Beach Resort reported on 69 boats, with 242 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 28 striped marlin, 2 sailfish, 88 dorado, 5 tuna, 33 roosterfish, 6 snappers, 1 jack crevalle, 22 bonito, 1 pompano, 10 triggerfish, and 36 cabrilla. East Cape fishing area weather was in the high-80s, with water temperatures of 76 to 84 degrees. "The striped marlin and dorado are close, from La Ribera to Los Frailes," Velazquez said. "Inshore, there are plenty of the roosterfish reaching 50 pounds."
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: John Ireland of Rancho Leonero said East Cape fish counts picked up during the week as Leonero fleet boats caught 1 to 5 billfish per day plus steady dorado including some into the 50-pound class. Inshore boats found roosterfish up into the 50-pound class plus pompano and pargo biting southwards from the hotel. "Dorado were mostly in the 25 to 45-pound range and very spread out between Cerralvo Island and Los Frailes," Ireland said. "The larger bulls are taking trolled marlin lures. Inshore, a dog snapper taken this week weighed 62 pounds, and pompano in the 5 to 7-pound range are schooling at the Las Arenas lighthouse." East Cape fishing area weather was in the low-90s, with some windy days and the water clear at 79 to 82 degrees.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Marisol Verdugo of Martin Verdugo's Beach Resort said hotel cruisers and super pangas fished daily for about 1 to 2 striped marlin per boat, some nice dorado to 40 pounds, about 7 yellowfin tuna caught at midweek, and 1 blue marlin landed at 220 pounds. "The fishing has been busy," Verdugo said. "We have been doing some bottom fishing too." Guests at Verdugo's during the week included olde tyme Baja hand Don Mason of Valley Center, Calif., and his group.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Andy Atchley of Imperial Beach, Calif., reported on 3 days of mixed offshore and inshore fishing by his group aboard the boats Mahi Mahi and Pez Gallo out of Hotel Punta Colorada for a catch including released fish of: 1 sailfish, 5 marlin, 5 dorado, 4 jacks, 4 sierra, 3 ladyfish, 1 cornetfish, 3 perch, and 1 flounder. "Wildlife sightings included 2 species of whales, spinner dolphins, and more mantas than any of us had seen before," Atchley said. Also at East Cape with Atchley's group were: John Kovarovic, Kit Kyburg, Mike O'Keefe, Amanda Huff, and David Richards. Atchley also noted a visit to La Trinidad RV Park in La Ribera, saying, "The beautiful new La Trinidad RV Park Restaurant and Bar is now open for business in La Ribera on the beach near the new Pemex station. The food was good and the Pacificos were cold!"
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly said East Cape offshore boats fished mostly northwards from Punta Pescadero to the 88 Bank east of Isla Cerralvo, but with marlin still not on the bite. "There are plenty of marlin around but bites are tough to come by," Graham said. "A bonus this week was a few yellowfin tuna from 10 to 40 pounds that were scratched out from under porpoise before the Mexican commercial seiners came steaming over the horizon." Inshore water was turbid after a blow at midweek but produced 3 first-ever roosterfish for angler Barbara Pierre of Seattle, Wash., during action at El Cardonal with Mark Rayor's Vista Sea Sport diving and fishing service. "The beach got thrashed pretty good by wind," Graham said. "It may take several days before the water clears up from the wind waves." East Cape fishing area weather was clear in the high-90s, with water temperatures of 70 to 82 degrees.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: East Cape tin boat angler Torrance Eddy reported on several outings including a run with Larry Jennings of Williamsburg, Mich., for a catch of: 4 dorado to 15 pounds, 1 yellow snapper, 1 skipjack, and 1 cabrilla. "All the dorado were caught near a sargasso paddy," Eddy said. "Larry really had fun with his $20 Walmart freshwater spinning rig. He was casting a Rapala popper lure. Two days later, he caught a 35-pound bull dorado from the Splash II super panga." Another run aboard Eddie's boat produced a 7-pound dorado for Jaime Cruz of Alameda, Calif., who was on his first-ever ocean fishing trip. "I bled it and put it on ice right away and that evening the restaurant cooked it perfectly, feeding all 6 of us," Eddy said. "There are good numbers of small to medium-sized dorado within a mile or 2 of shore. And over the last week I have had 2 mako shark incidents off Buenos Aires. I had 1 certain mako strike on Saturday, and on Tuesday, a 7 footer jumped high into the air only 30 feet in front of my boat."
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: John More of Minneapolis, Minn., reported a first-ever striped marlin release plus 9 big roosterfish released near shore while fishing with his group on the charter super panga La Paloma out of East Cape's Hotel Punta Colorada. "We were trolling striper jigs about 10 miles east of the Punta Arena lighthouse," More said. "The roosters were caught mostly in shallow water on live mullet in the Cabo Pulmo area. The marlin and all the roosterfish were released." Also fishing in More's group were his brother Ray More from Oklahoma and father Dick More from Colorado.
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the week ending May 29, 2008, Chris Moyers of East Cape Smoke House reported on 204 charter boats from combined fleets including Hotels Palmas de Cortez, Playa del Sol, Punta Colorada, Buena Vista Beach Resort, Rancho Leonero, and Martin Verdugo's Beach Resort, with 594 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 175 striped marlin, 50 sailfish, 316 dorado, 11 yellowfin tuna, 1 pargo, 2 wahoo, 2 pompano, 1 cabrilla, 8 roosterfish, 1 sierra, and 1 mako shark. East Cape fishing area weather was in the low-90s, with water temperatures of 70 to 82 degrees. "East Cape is currently in the midst of a real nice dorado bite and a pretty decent striped marlin bite," Moyers said. "There's still plenty of squid in the water which means it's a bit tougher to find the hungry fish."
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the previous week ending May 22, 2008, Moyers reported on 210 boats with 601 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 129 striped marlin, 48 sailfish, 119 dorado, 1 wahoo, 6 yellowtail, 22 roosterfish, 10 triggerfish, and 2 mako shark. East Cape fishing area weather was in the mid-90s, with water temperatures of 73 to 83 degrees. "We're just seeing some dismal fishing numbers," Moyers said. "Anglers are finding fish but they're just not all that hungry because there is still quite a bit of squid in the water."
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the week ending May 30, 2008, Eddie Dalmau of Van Wormer Resorts reported on 289 East Cape charter fishing boats from Hotels Palmas de Cortez, Playa del Sol, and Punta Colorada, with a catch including released fish of: 228 striped marlin, 48 sailfish, 206 dorado, 14 yellowfin tuna, 55 roosterfish, 7 wahoo, 22 cabrilla, 18 pargo, 14 triggerfish, 29 bonito, 35 skipjack, and 2 mako shark. East Cape fishing area weather was at 90 degrees, with water temperatures of 75 to 80 degrees. Good concentrations of roosterfish continued along East Cape beaches. "Big roosters are to be found around the lighthouse and Rincon," Dalmau said. "The Paloma found a good concentration of big roosters around Los Frailes bay on Thursday and Lance Peterson confirmed the report with action along the beach for the grandes. The water is teeming with mullet and ballyhoo right now."
EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Simon Cazaly of the Vista Sea Sport East Cape diving service reported bottom temperatures up at 77 degrees with visibility of 60 to 70 week on the Cabo Pulmo coral reef last week. "Diving has really been a pleasure," Cazaly said. "Sunlight filtering down from the surface has been making the reef appear more vibrant than ever, illuminating the corals and sea fans." Sea life sightings during Vista Sea Sport dive trips included golden cownose rays, hawksbill sea turtles, Panamic green morays, and schools of burrito grunt, graybar grunt, and Panamic porkfish. "A rare sighting of a zebra moray also made my week whilst my divers enthused about a huge diamond stingray that allowed them to creep up on it before slowly moving away," Cazaly said.
LA PAZ, MEXICO: Gerardo Hernandez of Tortuga Sportfishing at La Paz said some strong north winds kept his pangas fishing close to Ensenada de los Muertos but with good results on pargo lisa and mixed inshore species, plus very good results on offshore dorado of 35 to 45 pounds at the buoys on mornings when the wind permitted pangas to run out. "Those anglers that arrived at the buoys had very good fishing," Hernandez said. Sailfish and marlin were also caught and released by offshore pangas at the buoys, but out at the 88 Bank mostly small dorado were caught. La Paz fishing area weather was at 90 degrees. Good quantities of sardina baits continued to be available along the Baja shore at Punta Perico and also at Isla Cerralvo.
LA PAZ, MEXICO: Jonathan Roldan of Tailhunter International said his La Paz pangas caught their first yellowfin tuna of the season last week. "It was a one-day flurry of 2 fish," Roldan said, "but it seems like summer here and things are finally warming up." Larger bull dorado in the 30 and 40-pound class were caught off Ensenada de los Muertos and at Isla Cerralvo. "Bulls in this size range are not unusual, but these are large fish for this early in the year," Roldan said. "We are also getting the trophy-sized roosterfish around the Las Arenas lighthouse."
LORETO, MEXICO: Thomas Cox of Brawley, Calif., reported on 2 days of fishing out of Loreto with Capt. Pablo that included a wide-open dorado bite about 30 miles straight east of town and a dead boat marlin strike during a stop with 3 swimmers in the water. Describing the dorado action, Cox said, "After running for what seemed like hours we came across a huge section of kelp and got on a line of several patties about the size of a truck that were holding big fish. We were in very cool 70-degree water. After about 30 minutes of wide-open fishing and several quadruple hookups other pangas showed up and the fish got spooked and would not eat." On the second day of fishing, Cox got his marlin hookup as 3 members of his group were going for a swim. "As they were swimming behind the boat my reel started screaming and a 200-pound class marlin started to dance behind the boat," Cox said. "The 3 that were swimming seemed to run on water and were in the boat in a hurry. The marlin broke off and that was the end to our spectacular trip." Fishing with Cox at Loreto were Larry Cox, Tina Cox, Tyler Brandt and his son Carson.
LORETO, MEXICO: Don Bear of Loreto reported a very good session for unlimited dorado found on a free-floating buoy about 32 miles out from town during an outing on Kent Baker's boat, with Jerry and Martha Baker also aboard. "In perfect weather we found a huge school of good-sized dorado just southwest of the Mercenarios bajo," Bear said. "After we had caught our 2-per-person Mexican sportfishing limit we lost count of the number of releases, but I estimate at least 20 dorado were caught in an hour's time. The larger fish seemed to come on mackerel that we caught earlier within a mile of town. When the big ones were gone, sardinas netted at the marina were generally hit by smaller fish. By the time we left the buoy with tired arms, 7 other pangas had arrived. We were back at the Loreto marina shortly before noon."
LORETO, MEXICO: Ken Clifton of Tacoma, Wash., reported on a good day with Loreto panga Capt. Francisco, fishing out of the downtown marina aboard the charter panga Pajaro together with Clifton's father at the north tip of Isla Carmen for a 50-pound amberjack, and then running about 20 miles northeast for 8 dorado released and 3 kept, including 2 nice bulls, all by 11 a.m. in good sea conditions. "Francisco is one of the captains that Coco Cabanas uses on a regular basis," Clifton said. "We went out for yellowtail off Carmen early in the morning using live bait about 10 feet off the bottom. My father hooked up and Francisco kept telling him to keep it out of the rocks and my father struggled with it for about 30 minutes. Little did we expect to catch a 50-pound amberjack. After that we went out and hooked up the dorado."
MULEGE, MEXICO: Bill Coffman of Ojai, Calif., reported good cabrilla fishing during a trip to his place at Bahia Coyote south of Mulege inside Bahia Concepción. "Adrian Osuna, my old fishing buddy, hauled in a 10-kilo grandpa cabrilla and I caught 3 in the 4-kilo range," Coffman said. "Plenty for dinner and I brought a few bags home." Bahia Coyote resident Roger Pramus reported dorado being caught 15 miles off Punta Concepción, but Coffman said, "Too much work for me." Mulege fishing area weather was seasonable, with about 2 days of wind for each day of calm seas.
MULEGE, MEXICO: After his recent trip to the Hotel Serenidad in Mulege, fly-in angler Ron Grant of Crestline, Calif., commented on the overall slow tourism business in Baja California this season caused by problems with the U.S. economy and real estate meltdown combined with bad publicity about crime and drug cartel violence. "Don Johnson of the Hotel Serenidad is doing very well, but of course, he is not happy about the lack of business," Grant said. "Since the crackdown on the drug trafficking and the airplane hijacking on the Serenidad airstrip the hotel business is really bad. He's hoping for a turnaround in October. They told me they are getting a lot of cancelations on longtime customers since all the problems on the border in northern Baja. The roads, at this time, are not really safe and border crossings are down as much as 80 percent. Just for what it's worth, my flight down and border crossings were uneventful and seeing a lot more federal police and military around the area I feel safe. There is a Mexican gunboat just outside the mouth of Conception Bay, 24/7. I understand if you don't have fishing poles and rubber boots in a panga they will stop you. I had no problems in my Skipjack boat and most American boats don't have any problems as well. They wave and we wave back."
BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: Abraham Vazquez of Camp Gecko at Bahia de los Angeles said last week's weather was in the high-80s, with low humidity and some strong winds from the west. Fishing inside the bay produced some yellowtail at Islas Smith and Piojo, and sometimes at Isla Horse Head. "They are boiling and breezing on the surface and most boats have been catching Mexican limits of 8 to 12-pound fish," Vazquez said. "There is lots of food in the water. Some grouper were also caught by trolling near shore." Vazquez noted that the local population of pelicans had begun returning to the Pacific side of Baja for the summer.
BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: John Aman of Lake Arrowhead, Calif., reported on a Baja run to San Francisquito south of Bahia de los Angeles, finding the fishing area still with very cool water at 58 degrees during 2 outings aboard his boat, but with lots of bait present and 2 yellowtail caught at 25 and 40 pounds. "We got on one good boil but they wouldn't eat the iron," Aman said. "It should really turn on in 2 to 3 weeks. There are tons of squid present." Also fishing at San Francisquito in Aman's group were Dave Phillips of Las Vegas, Nev., and Bruno Palmieri of Anaheim, Calif.
Aman noted the present period of transition at the old Baja "San Francisquito Resort" at the south end of the air trip on the point. "General conditions at San Fran are poor," Aman said. "The resort is really run-down, but hopefully the new ownership will be making improvements. It's basically been neglected for years with little or no money going back into the place. It's still a beautiful, remote place in Baja, and still one of the best yellowtail spots when they are passing through.
"The facility and airstrip are open, contrary to rumors. There were rumors that everyone had to get all of their belongings out of the lockers at the resort and that the place would be shut down for the summer. Juan said this is not the case. According to him, there are no issues. However, the 2 houses that are on PSF property at the south end of the beach are being vacated. They have to be out by the end of the month. I heard that the new owners possibly want the houses for rental purposes to large groups. I don't know if this is true.
"We drove down to San Francisquito and the road conditions are great. There is very little traffic right now and it looks like they are trying to make improvements to the highway in several spots. It even looks like they are attempting to make a passing lane in one area. It looks like they are widening the highway in one small section.
"Beto Lucero was at Caleta San Francisquito and we stayed in his cabana. His rental cabana is in great shape and was a nice change. We are returning in a few weeks and we'll be staying there again.
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Tony Reyes Sr. of Tony Reyes Fishing Tours reported on a 6-day fishing trip to the Cortez Midriff islands aboard the panga mothership Jose Andres, returning to San Felipe on Friday, May 30, 2008, with a fish count reported by crew member File Espinoza Montez of: 54 yellowtail of 18 to 30 pounds, 10 grouper of 55 to 68 pounds; 2 black sea bass of 70 to 286 pounds, 3 white seabass of 20 to 26 pounds, 144 cabrilla of 12 to 18 pounds, 5 red snapper of 15 to 21 pounds, 2 broomtail of 14 to 21 pounds, 13 sheephead of 9 to 12 pounds, Mexican sportfishing limits of spotted bay bass, and 25 miscellaneous fish. Midriff islands fishing area water temperatures averaged 63.7 degrees.
Weekly winners in the season-long Jose Andres fishing tournament were: yellowtail, 30 pounds, Paul Graham, Norwalk, Calif., guide Ruben Orozco; white seabass, 28 pounds, John Hancock, San Clemente, Calif., guide Antonio Sanchez; cabrilla, 18.9 pounds, Jack Preston, Alta Loma, Calif., guide Antonio Sanchez.
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Reyes also reported on a 6-day Midriff islands trip by the panga mothership Tony Reyes, returning to San Felipe on May 30, 2008, with a catch of: 109 yellowtail of 10 to 32 pounds, 96 cabrilla of 10 to 24 pounds, 20 pargos of 10 to 20 pounds, Mexican fishing limits of spotted bay bass, 1 black sea bass of 94 pounds, 4 grouper of 54 to 93 pounds, 70 Humboldt squid, 10 sheephead of 6 to 12 pounds, 174 ocean whitefish of 3 to 6 pounds, and 8 sierra mackerel of 3 to 6 pounds.
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Dana Kerby of Baja Fishing & Diving reported on a 6-day Midriff islands fishing trip by the panga mothership Andrea Lynn, returning to San Felipe on May 29, 2008, with a fish count of: 15 pargo, 115 cabrilla, 287 yellowtail, 5 grouper, 306 bass, 94 miscellaneous fish, 1 white seabass, and 1 black sea bass. "The water is getting warmer and the boat had good weather this trip," Kerby said. Midriff and upper Sea of Cortez fishing locations visited by the Andrea Lynn included San Luis Gonzaga, Punta Final, La Asamblea, Puerto Refugio, Punta Diablo, Ensenada Grande, Golden Reef, and Isla San Luis.
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Dean Mitchell of San Diego reported on a Memorial Day trip with his group down Baja's Sea of Cortez coast to camp and fish out of Puertecitos south of San Felipe on an inflatable boat. Windy conditions prevented fishing outside at the Golden Reef, but at the nearby Islas Encantadas, Mitchell and Matthias Gruber found an 18-pound leopard grouper and a hot catch-and-release session on protected totoaba of 16 to about 45 pounds. "Several buddies and I caravanned to the Motel Puertecitos over Memorial Day weekend," Mitchell said. "Unfortunately, unseasonably cool weather and wind turned us away from the Golden Reef about three-fourths of the way out each fishing day. We were able to fish at the Islas Encantadas one day and Matthias 'Hans Grouper' Gruber and I got into a totoaba bite that was so good we had to leave it."
SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Catalina Meders of San Felipe's Title Company Bookstore reported near gale-force winds calming by midweek with the air temperature at 84 degrees by 9:45 a.m. and the relative humidity a pleasant 25 percent. "It's very, very quiet in San Felipe this week," Meders said. "The last big day was was El Dia de Marinos and there were boat displays and old photos and boat rides and exhibitions. San Felipe was very crowded and lots of fun. But most of the snow birds have flown away north now, and we are settling down for the long hot summer."
SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Larry Gibbons of Tucson, Ariz., reported on 3 days of fishing on the San Carlos boat No Le Hace with Capt. Juan Tirado for a catch with trip partner Randy Marchello of 10 dorado of 12 to 25 pounds, including 7 dorado caught in a hot 7 a.m. session around a dead sea lion. "There were hundreds of dorado near the seal," Gibbons said. "We stopped the boat and fished with light tackle and sardinas, very successful. We also spotted a ton of billfish, but we were unsuccessful in catching any of them."
SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Jon Jen Charters at San Carlos reported confused seas and northwest winds early in the week in the San Carlos fishing area but with some boats scoring on dorado to 25 pounds. "Most of the week was good fishing," Jon Jen said, "but many boats turned around. Saturday we elected to go towards the island and started with a real cluster of dorado. I missed the gaff, then we got 2 nice dorado, and lost another big dorado at the boat, and also had a billfish on but missed her." With 29 boats fishing 2 days in the San Carlos Rescate Yacht Club tournament, the catch was: 7 marlin, 6 sailfish, and 43 dorado. The top 3 boats were, in order, Lucky Ducks with Capt. Sergio Chavez, Kryptonite with Capt. Daniel Grajeda Jr., and Andale II and Capt. Julio Anaya.
MAZATLAN, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported Aries Fleet offshore charter boats out of Mazatlan's Marina El Cid still finding tough fishing conditions, but inshore boats scoring Mexican sportfishing limits of sierra, plus some red snapper and triggerfish. "There has been a hard current pushing up into the Sea of Cortez and moving all of the feed biomass for the bait fish off to the north," Edwards said. "Water clarity is improving and Mazatlan boats are seeing more and more dorado under the buoys. Some boats are catching them on small, fresh squid, slow trolled by the buoys." Mazatlan fishing area weather was sunny in the high-80s, with currents bringing blue water from the south and water temperatures at 82 degrees inshore and 84 degrees offshore.
PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO: Matt Harbour reported on an offshore fishing trip out of Puerto Vallarta by Steve Danziger aboard the sportfisher Boomer with Capt. Josh Temple for a catch including released fish of: 8 pargo, 4 yellowfin tuna to 40 pounds, and a 75-pound class tuna lost on light tackle at deep color. "There are lots of 25 to 50-pound yellowfin tuna and sightings of an occasional 100-pound fish at the offshore banks, but getting the fish to bite has been a challenge on some days," Harbour said. "Hopefully once the conditions improve the fishing will bust wide-open." Puerto Vallarta offshore fishing area water temperatures were at 79 to 84 degrees, with green color.
IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Ed Kunze, reporting for Baja On The Fly, said blue water was about 6 miles outside Zihuatanejo bay as local sportfishing boats averaged about 1 to 3 sailfish per day offshore and also found good roosterfish action near the beach. "The roosterfish action down at Puerto Vicente Guerrero is outstanding," Kunze said. "Capt. Jose Pino, on the panga Angelica, reported 15 roosters in one day and up north Capt. Adolfo on the panga Dos Hermanos is getting very good jack crevalle action." Ixtapa fishing area weather was mostly cloudy in the high-90s, with water temperatures of 80 to 84 degrees.
CANCUN, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters reported rough seas all week in the Cancun fishing area and just 3 outings in clearing weather on Thursday by the El Cid Caribe sportfishing fleet at Puerto Morelos, with a catch including released fish of: 2 sailfish, 6 bonito, 1 dorado, 2 king mackerel, and 2 barracuda. "It appears that once the wind lets up and boats can fish again it will be back to good fishing," Edwards said. "June is typically one of the better fishing months of the year at Cancun. This week was very difficult, with the port closed on all days except today due to windy conditions." Cancun fishing area weather was in the low-90s, with scattered showers, southeast winds at 10 to 15 knots, and the water temperature even at 82 degrees.