Early season dorado also show up
as Loreto fishing boats pound spring yellowtail run at San Bruno

Mexico Fishing News, April 6, 2009



LORETO, MEXICO: As local fishing boats continued to score good counts of yellowtail on the San Bruno bajo north of town last week, Bill Erhardt of Loreto reported a catch of 9 peanut dorado to about 10 pounds during 2 offshore runs for marlin. "The surface sea temperature where the dorado were caught was around 69 degrees," Erhardt said. "The dorado hit marlin feathers.

The little floating structure I did encounter was not holding fish. The dorado were in free swimming schools and not under seaweed or any other structure, which is normal for early dorado around Loreto. But usually it is mid-April before the schoolie dorado appear in large numbers. This year they arrived in late March."

Loreto boats found very good yellowtail action on the San Bruno reef about 7 miles north of town, as Erhardt's boat Soledad landed as many as 10 fish by noon.

"Thirty to 50 boats plied the reef on days that the wind was down," Erhardt said. "The fish were spread over a large enough area that boats were not bumping into each other. Most of the time there were some bent rods to be seen and double hookups were common as schools of voracious 'tails cruised the area.

"The epic bite drew not only the Loreto fleet but also boats from Puerto Escondido that normally would be fishing south around Isla Catalana for the generally larger yellowtail that are usually caught there this time of year."

LORETO, MEXICO: Patty Zapata of Loreto's Hotel Oasis reported on a 3-angler group that fished with Capt. Francisco Martinez Castro for 3 days at the San Bruno bajo, with a catch of 34 yellowtail of 25 to 38 pounds. Loreto fishing area weather was calm on 2 days and moderately windy on the third. Fishing with Capt. Martinez were anglers: Jesus Marinez, Enrique Marinez and Ricardo Marinez.

LORETO, MEXICO: Pam Bolles of Loreto's Baja Big Fish Company reported several consecutive days of wind, but with conditions improving. "We're going fishing at San Bruno tomorrow," Bolles said. "This wind is weird, with lots of westerlies and dry air, but that's normal for this time of year."

In other mainland Mexico and Baja fishing action this week:



ENSENADA, MEXICO: Ivan Villarino of Vonny's Fleet reported clear fishing weather and good sea conditions for his charter pangas fishing at the tip of Ensenada's Punta Banda, with steady Mexico fishing limits of mixed bottom fish, plus a flurry of bonita to 9 pounds and 2 yellowtail at 28 pounds for angler Jay Johnson, who when out on Monday with Capt. Beto. "On the way in, the bonita erupted on the surface," Villarino said. "They tossed the aluminum jigs with 40-pound line and got the yellowtail and bonito."

Ensenada fishing area weather was partly cloudy in the mid-60s, with 3 m.p.h. breezes, ocean swells at 3 feet, and the water temperatures at Punta Banda averaging 58 degrees.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Steve Ross of the Ensenada boat Bad Dog at Marina Coral reported on a 117-mile outing in some wind and swell for a day's catch in 57.8-degree water of 2 Humboldt giant squid on a pair of spots about 1,500 feet deep outside the Peanut Bank, plus about 20 mixed bottom fish just off Punta Cabra.

"Hats off to Jeff Gammon and his Terrafin SST charts," Ross said. "With his new software I was able to mark each waypoint and calculate distances from each spot with water temps posted as well."

About 40 miles outside the Peanut Bank, the Bad Dog made 2 deep drops of over 1,000 feet, but scored just 2 squid. "The 80-pound Berkley Braid cut through the swells and I immediately got heavy," Ross said. "A Humboldt squid had sucked up the sinker, ganion, and all the line up to the cyalume light. I presume that was his vitamins for the day."

Off Punta Cabra, the Bad Dog caught bottom fish about 170 feet deep in 55-degree water while fishing near the Castro's Camp boats Don Vicente and Castros 3. "The fishing was slow and we had to move around to manage 20 various rockfish in the 2 to 4-pound variety," Ross said. "We fished alongside of the friendly Castro's boats for several hours until we decided to head on back to Marina Coral."



PUERTO SANTO TOMAS, MEXICO: Sam Saenz of Puerto Santo Tomas Resort reported no anglers present for the last 3 weeks, but 4 pangas going out over the weekend for good results on lingcod, rockcods, and whitefish. "The lingcod bite was dominant for all sport fishermen in and around Bahia de Soledad," Saenz said. "The weather at Puerto Santo Tomas was ideal, no wind and sunny, plus no swells." Anglers fishing during the week included Ken Jones of Long Beach, Calif., and Tony Allen and his son Andy of San Diego, Calif.

PUERTO SANTO TOMAS, MEXICO: Ken Jones of Long Beach, Calif., reported on his run down Baja's Highway Mex 1 for 2 days of panga fishing with Capt. Marcos of Puerto Santo Tomas Resort, and a catch in very good early spring sea conditions of "the usual suspects," including mixed rockfish, lingcod, cabazon, treefish, calico bass, whitefish, bocaccio including a fish of about 8 to 10 pounds caught by Capt. Marcos, and various assorted species.

Jones noted especially good fishing on his second day. "The sea was standing still," Jones said. "Short sleeves and warm afternoon weather fishing is just too rare there to pass up. We caught far more in a few hours at basically one drop near the resort than the previous entire day."

Puerto Santo Tomas fishing area weather was at about 70 degrees, with very light winds the entire weekend, small ocean swells, and no whitecaps. No surface action was observed.

Baja road conditions into Puerto Santo Tomas were good until the Punta China turnoff, and washboard the rest of the way into Puerto Santo Tomas. "Slow down or air down!" Jones said.

Jones noted no problems during his drive from the U.S. border.

"As to the media assault on Mexico, I found no problems or anything out of the ordinary," Ross said. The toll booths to Ensenada seem to be more and more mini-checkpoints, but as to the actual military checkpoints, I was waved through at both Maneadero and The Guadalupe Valley going north.

"Until I hear that the Mexican drug cartels are targeting old farts in beat up Toyota trucks, I will continue my adventures in Baja with the usual caution and respect for the locals."



SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Jorge Rosales of the CICESE research center in Ensenada reported on a sportfishing catch survey conducted at San Quintin on March 20-21, 2009, with a total of 6 outings by the 4 boats Coyote, Cucajuan, Marinero, and Fanny I monitored at the Old Mill launch ramp and a catch count for 10 anglers of: 164 vermilion rockfish, 38 whitefish, 29 bocaccio, 17 lingcod, 14 brown rockfish, 11 flag rockfish, 11 starry rockfish, 8 greenspotted rockfish, and a few cowcod, sugar bass, olive rockfish, barred sandbass, sheephead, mackerel, and 1 bonito.

San Quintin fishing area water temperatures were at 57.0 degrees as boats fished mostly at the 240 spot, and 1 boat fished at the 160 spot. San Quintin weather was good, with no rain or strong winds.

Assisting Rosales with fish measuring and otolith extraction were CICESE students Abigail Dominguez, Maria Fernanda Hernandez, and Cesar Guerrero.

Rosales' group stayed at Nancy and Jim Harer's Old Mill Motel, and diversions during the trip included dining at the nearby Jardines Baja Restaurant.

Side trips included a drive down Mex 1 to the amazing La Lobera rock-enclosed bluff crater south of San Quintin with an interior beach that is connected to the sea through a cave and that has a resident sea lion population.

"On Saturday morning, we also visited the oyster farms at Bahía Falsa, and Tiburon’s pangas invited us to have manta ray cooked with a sea turtle recipe," Rosales said. CICESE's next survey trip to San Quintin was scheduled for April.



MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly reported Magdalena Bay fishing area weather as partly cloudy in the low-80s, with water temperatures of 67 to 73 degrees and some dorado and small tuna still present offshore. "Regardless of the cool water temperature, the dorado remain just a few miles out," Graham said. "There are also some football-sized tuna and skipjack mixed in."

Just a few anglers fished the Magdalena Bay mangrove channels for spotty catches of grouper, bass, sierra, and corvina.



CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: For the week ending March 25, 2009, Tracy Ehrenberg of Pisces Fleet Sportfishing at Cabo San Lucas reported very poor striped marlin action, as just 22 percent of charters released marlin, 25 percent caught dorado, and very few boats when out. "The was the poorest week in a long time for marlin," Ehrenberg said. "When marlin were found, it was hard to interest them. They would nudge the bait and disappear."

Ehrenberg also noted very few anglers fishing at Cabo San Lucas. "Charter business was the slowest we have seen in many years for this period," she said.

Inshore yellowtail fishing led the counts for Pisces boats during the week as 84 yellowtail of 12 to 45 pounds were caught. Sierra mackerel were also present in good quantity as boats landed up to 15 per outing, plus a mix of cabrilla, bonita, skipjack, and both hammerhead and mako shark released.

The week's single catch of yellowfin tuna was for 10 fish by the charter boat Bill Collector with angler Dan Monks.

Cabo San Lucas fishing area weather was very windy and rough on the Pacific side and fair to calm on the Cortez side, with water temperatures averaging 67 degrees.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Jim Dillon of Salvador's Sportfishing reported on 6 outings by the Cabo San Lucas charter boats El Budster, El Budster I, and El Budster II, with a catch including released fish of: 2 striped marlin, 2 dorado of 30 pounds, 32 yellowtail of 12 to 16 pounds, and 1 other boat with Mexico fishing limits of yellowtail. Salvador's Sportfishing boats targeted yellowtail near the Cabo San Lucas arch.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: For the fishing week ending March 29, 2009, George Landrum of Fly Hooker Sportfishing at Cabo San Lucas reported just a few striped marlin caught, mostly at the Jaime Bank on the Pacific side. "Not many of the fish were hungry," Landrum said. "Maybe a quarter of Cabo San Lucas fishing boats returned this week with a marlin flag." Yellowfin tuna were also slow, but decent numbers of dorado to about 12 pounds were caught by Cabo boats running up the Cortez side.

Local Cabo San Lucas inshore fishing produced good counts of sierra and yellowtail on both sides of the arch. "Inshore was where it was happening and that is what many Cabo boats ended up doing," Landrum said.



SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Eric Brictson of Gordo Banks Pangas reported on 53 combined La Playita fleet charter pangas fishing out of San Jose del Cabo's Puerto Los Cabos marina, with a catch including released fish of: 305 sierra, 94 dorado, 47 pargo, 26 roosterfish, 23 bonito, 18 cabrilla, 16 amberjack, 15 jack crevalle, 13 pompano, 8 golden jack, 7 yellowfin tuna, 5 mako shark, 4 yellowtail, and 3 striped marlin.

San Jose del Cabo fishing area weather was clear in the 80s, with moderate afternoon winds and water temperatures at 70 to 74 degrees.

Tourist crowds continued lighter than normal at Los Cabos as local anglers waited for the traditional spring rising of pelagic red crabs off the tip of Baja and the excellent surface bite for huachinango or true red snapper that sometimes accompanies it.

"There is still no sign of red crabs swarming on the surface," Brictson said. "This can really get the huachinango into a feeding frenzy. Last year, we never did see much activity for the crabs. It can be very exciting to catch the snapper on the surface with light tackle and these small baits."

SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Bob Grimes of San Jose del Cabo reported changes in local fishing practices as a result of a recent increase in enforcement of regulations and limits.

"The recent enforcement of sportfishing regulation continues, and gringos better be sure to have their Mexican fishing license," Grimes said.

"Don't fillet the fish before they get to the tables, and don't exceed the possession limits. The enforcement of possession limits is working.

"Many of the Mexican sportfishing pangueros used to completely ignore the possession limits, and a lot of their customers were ignorant of them. Now the pangueros are afraid of heavy fines, and most of them are telling their clients to release fish.

"There are new strict rules about spear fishing. The pangueros have never liked it when gringos spear fish, but now there are restricted areas and other restrictions, so divers should make careful inquiry before they spear fish, even with a Hawaiian sling.

"This is overdue, as the bottom fish in the entire Los Cabos region were long ago decimated by overfishing, particularly by the commercial interests. The penalties can be harsh.

"The Mexican oyster divers often illegally take lobsters and fish with spear guns and Hawaiian slings. One of them had all of his equipment confiscated, including his panga, when caught with a bunch of fish he had speared in a restricted area."



EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly reported variable spring fishing at East Cape as Mark Rayor of Vista Sea Sport checked in with 2 marlin releases and many jumpers seen about 15 miles straight out. "Our second marlin was only 4.5 miles from the house," Rayor said. "There was also a wide-open dorado bite to the north of us."

Along East Cape beaches, roosterfish, jacks, and ladyfish were feeding on numerous small schools of sardina bait fish.

East Cape fishing area weather was clear in the mid-80s, with water temperatures at 67 to 73 degrees.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the fishing week ending March 26, 2009, Hotel Buena Vista Beach Resort reported on 5 boats, with 12 anglers and a catch including released fish of: 1 striped marlin, 32 dorado, and 13 sierra. East Cape fishing area weather was in the mid-70s, with water temperatures of 71 to 74 degrees, as 2 days of fishing were missed due to wind. Dorado continued abundant but reluctant to bite as they fed on plentiful of squid in the water.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: For the East Cape fishing week ending March 28, 2009, John Ireland of Rancho Leonero reported steady striped marlin at about 1 fish per outing, as boats picked through good numbers of marlin sluggish on the baits. "All boats targeting billfish are releasing at least one per day," Ireland said, "but just one in ten marlin are taking live mackerel. There are lots of tailers and some very sleepy marlin in the Cortez."

East Cape fishing area weather was clear in the low-80s, with light winds, flat seas, and water temperatures in the mid-70s, as boats also caught Mexico fishing limits of dorado, and inshore fishing produced roosterfish mixed with jacks.

Some very good action for dorado to about 8 pounds was found on debris. "A large piece of mooring line floating off the lighthouse produced limits for all," Ireland said.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Simon Cazaly of the Vista Sea Sport diving service at East Cape reported good numbers of humpback whales seen during runs to the Cabo Pulmo coral reef. "Humpback whales have been sighted every day and we have managed to get some great snapshots of them breaching," Cazaly said. "A pod of dolphins also joined us for a while, and we marveled as they playfully swam alongside the bow of the panga. One day, we saw the humpbacks on no less than 6 occasions."

Other East Cape sea life sightings included hundreds of leaping manta rays, sharks feeding on surface bait balls, and many mixed reef dwellers.

Water temperatures at depth on the Cabo Pulmo reef were at 70 degrees, with visibility dropping to 20 to 30 feet. "But that's not a problem when you are inundated with so many fish you almost have to push them aside to make any headway!" Cazaly said.



LA PAZ, MEXICO: Jonathan Roldan of Tailhunter International reported variable early spring season fish counts but some Mexico fishing limits of quality yellowtail at 20 to 45 pounds for pangas fishing on the La Paz side, and more yellowtail plus a nice mix of big cabrilla, lots of sierra, jack crevalle, skipjack, snappers, bonito, amberjack, and even some dorado for anglers on the Las Arenas side south of town.

Boats fishing northwards out of the city dealt with some windy days. "Conditions are very transitional right now as we move from winter to spring-time fishing," Roldan said. "But it's been a fairly solid week of fishing. The problem was that fishing straight out of La Paz sometimes meant rough windy and wet conditions during all or part of the day. If you were willing to take that chance, the rewards were evident."

On the Las Arenas side, pangas fished in sheltered near-shore waters for a good mix of species. "Fishing on this side was definitely the place to go for the most consistent action and closer, calmer waters, or for light tackle fishing," Roldan said.

La Paz fishing area weather was cool in the early mornings, but clear in the mid-80s during the day.

LA PAZ, MEXICO: Gerardo Hernandez of Tortuga Sportfishing at La Paz reported generally good fishing for his charter pangas on the Las Arenas side, with some winds offshore hampering runs to Isla Cerralvo, but good action for dorado at buoys closer to the Baja shoreline. "Our anglers prefer the dorado," Hernandez said. "We're getting small squid for bait, and sardina for yellowtail, cabrilla, and pargo that we're catching around Punta Perico. We have plenty of bait."

LA PAZ, MEXICO: Mike Carter of Todos Santos reported on an outing at La Paz with Capt. Felipe of Agua Amarga for a catch at Isla Cerralvo of: 3 large yellowtail, 2 sierra, 1 yellow snapper, and 1 small roosterfish. "It was a great Sea of Cortez fishing day," Carter said. "One surprise was that out at the fishing grounds we were inundated with 'bobos'! We almost had to wear masks so as not to inhale them. But when you're catching bruisers, who cares?"



SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Richard Hollo of Bloomington, Calif., reported on an exploratory Baja overland trip with his wife Monica to visit the area around Puertecitos on the Sea of Cortez coast south of San Felipe.

"I wanted to look for some productive fishing areas," Hollo said. "We purchased Zack Thomas’ “Trailerboating Baja” this spring, and between that and the “Baja Catch," we decided that Puertecitos sounded promising.

Hollo noted the paved road from the U.S. Border to San Felipe in generally good condition, but with some dirt bypasses due to the ongoing widening of the road from 2 to 4 lanes. Local gas was found at the equivalent of $2.02 per gallon.

The road running from San Felipe southwards to Puertecitos was found to be completely paved, but still with the well-known dips north of town. "There are several vados the last 10 miles just before you get into Puertecitos, but I thought that only 4 or 5 of them were really ugly," Hollo said. "Puertecitos is still a small village."

The Puertecitos paved launch ramp at the east end of the village was found to be in good condition and usable except for about the bottom 2 hours of the tide, which left the end of the ramp dry. Launching was included with a $10 parking fee near the ramp.

"If you rent one of the palapas for $20 per day, or stay in one of the hotel rooms for $45 per night, the boat ramp is also free," Hollo said. "The rooms were on par with the Old Mill in San Quintin except there were no curtains or doors on the bathroom so you might want to take along a sheet for some privacy if necessary. The area is gaited and very well guarded."

Driving south out of Puertecitos found the pavement extending for another 5 miles out of town.

"There are signs indicating that the road is being extended all the way to meet up with Mexico 1 in Laguna Chapala and they are busy at it," Hollo said. "There is a lot of cutting and filling going on and there was a lot of heavy equipment moving earth."

Shore fishing at a spot called "Chocolate Mountain' produced no action except for one nibbled swim bait, with the Islas Encantadas seen on the horizon.

Fishing with Sabiki rigs near the Puertecitos launch ramp produced just a few small spotted bay bass.

"We met Myron and Bernice who live in the house overlooking the ramp and learned that Bernice holds a woman’s record for a 59-pound white seabass she caught there," Hollo said. "There is a picture of her with the fish in the little restaurant by the hotel.

"Myron told us that they had been coming to Puertecitos since 1967 but had seen the fishery collapse in the past 10 years. He painted a bleak picture of fishing even at the islands. Regardless, the hotel and palapas are very nice and the ocean is close and warm for the kids. When the tide is down, they can capture mud suckers and crabs and glass shrimp among the rocks in the bottom of the bay.

"The islands look just too good to not hold some fish, so we will definitely make a trip down with the boat to try our luck."

SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: John Tillander, of Punta Bufeo and Henderson, Nev., reported good weather along Baja's northern Sea of Cortez coast, with air temperatures in the 70s, no wind, and water temperatures in the high-60s.

Fishing results included sierra caught on a reef southeast of Isla San Luis and big yellowtail at the same spot on the following day. "They were some of the largest we have caught in the upper Cortez," Tillander said. "This reef is real prominent. It goes straight south of San Luis and is above sea level for several miles at low tide. The reef we fish goes southeast and is under about 40 feet with drop-offs to 120 feet on either side.

Good-sized goldspotted bass were also caught on a high spot located about 3 miles north-northeast of Isla San Luis.

SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Catalina Meders of the Title Company Bookstore at San Felipe said the town was bracing for big crowds expected during Semana Santa following a slow Spring Break period. "They are painting the street markers for Semana Santa and the two carnivals are setting up their equipment," Meders said. "Let's hope that it brings at least some business to San Felipe."

San Felipe weather along the northern Sea of Cortez was in the high-70s, with calmer conditions after several days of wind. A whale of about 50-foot length was reported on the beach. "It is black with a white belly, 40 grooves, and a mouth that comes right up to below its eyes," Meders said. "The consensus is that it's a Bryde's whale, but nobody is certain."

For the week ending March 26, 2009, Meders reported some spring breakers in town despite unfavorable publicity in the U.S. news media about the safety of travel to Mexico. "There are a few brave independent spring breakers here in San Felipe," Meders said. "They seem to having a wonderful time. Many people are swimming in the sea and various pools around town, and tourists with skimpy clothes abound. My hat is off to them for trusting their own judgment and not following the herd. Let's hope more people decide to think for themselves." Northern Baja weather along the Sea of Cortez was in the high-70s, with light breezes.



SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Bryan Replogle of San Carlos reported slower fishing during the week, as water temperatures declined, water color was off, and the spring spawn approached. "I did see a panguero filling a truck bed to the brim with yellowtail," Replogle said. "Netted?"

Some smaller yellowtail were caught in the bay, and a run to Isla Tortuga by Replogle produced 6 quality yellowtail tight to the island. "There were over a dozen pangas clearing out the cabrilla and pargos," he said. "The water is warming and we may see big 'tails by the end of the week."

SAN CARLOS, MEXICO: Jon Jen Charters of San Carlos reported water temperatures down 6 degrees in 2 days as strong northwest winds kept most boats from running offshore. Two boats fishing in calming conditions on Thursday caught mixed bottom fish.



MAZATLAN, MEXICO: For the Mazatlan fishing week ending March 26, 2009, Tadeo Hernandez of Flota Bibi Fleet reported improved action on striped marlin, shark, and the season's first sailfish after a 10-day slump.

"Deep sea fishing at Mazatlan is picking up," Hernandez said. "Catching a sailfish in March is great news. It looks like water temperatures will return to normal this year and many sailfish should be around in the summer and fall."

Inshore fishing continued good for triggerfish, snappers, parrotfish, cabrilla, mojarra, and many mixed species.

A mangrove fishing charter guided by Hernandez and Capt. Victor produced catch-and-release action on mixed snappers and jack crevalle, plus 1 grunt for anglers Eddy Kreutzer, Bob Gray, Gordie McDonald, and Pat MacKinnon. "Our departing port for these trips is Teacapan, Sinaloa," Hernandez said. "Normally, we have our catch grilled, fried, and made into ceviche at a restaurant across the estuary in the state of Nayarit. A feast!"



PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO: Stan Gabruk of Master Baiter's Sportfishing & Tackle at Puerto Vallarta reported good numbers of mixed game fish present in local and nearby waters, but the bite sluggish due to abundant bait available for them to feed on. "The fishing is still mixed," Gabruk said. "There have been tons of requests for 4-hour trips around the bay. But the problem is this huge abundance of bait in the water. The fish in the bay have their pick of food readily available. So you come up on a boil and you can’t get anything to take your bait!"

PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO: For the previous week, Gabruk reported Capt. Manny Ocaranza of the charter boat Pacifico coming in with yellowfin tuna from a fishing location 15 miles outside of the El Banco offshore high spot. Other boats fished outside Islas Marietas.

"Marlin and mahi mahi are there as well," Gabruk said. "But one indication that spring is here are the changing water currents outside of Bahia de Banderas. Dirty water moved into this area. When you see this condition at Puerto Vallarta, and it’s not raining, it’s an indication that currents are changing and stirring up sediment on the ocean floor. You can find dirty water in places that just yesterday had blue water. In spring, everything is subject to change in a heart beat."

Inside Bahia de Banderas, tuna to 40 pounds, bonito, snappers, and assorted fish species were present, but feeding on heavy bait concentrations. "One downside has been the sheer number of tiny squid, sardina, and shrimp in the water," Gabruk said. "That will make fish picky. But don't be discouraged. Small baits can do the trick."



IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Ed Kunze, reporting for Baja On The Fly, said swirling water currents and variable water temperatures averaging about 77 degrees prevailed during the week as Ixtapa fishing boats scored about 1 sailfish per outing. "The blue water can be at 4 miles in the morning and 10 miles that afternoon," Kunze said.

Action was also slow for dorado, yellowfin tuna, and blue marlin. "This is typical for April," Kunze said. "In a few weeks, the private yachts will start arriving, and they will do well on blue marlin and large yellowfin tuna out at the 45 to 50-mile mark. It's a prelude to the good fishing that starts in May."

Jack crevalle, locally called "yellowtail jacks," were active inshore at 18 to 25 pounds.

IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Mike Bulkley of Huntress Sportfishing at Ixtapa Zihuatanejo reported better action at midweek, following a period of cool water currents from the north. "We also experienced a small earthquake on Friday which always puts the fish down for a couple of days," Bulkley said. "But warm water pushed back in this Sunday and the fish bite is picking up."

Capt. Francisco of the charter panga Huntress released 3 sailfish on Monday for the Buckelew family of Arkansas.

FIRST-EVER SAIL--Kelly Buckelew of Arkansas scored her first-ever sailfish release with Ixtapa Zihuatanejo's Capt. Francisco of the charter super panga Huntress. Offshore fishing at Ixtapa was improving during the week after a period of cooler water temperatures. PHOTO COURTESY OF MIKE BULKLEY.

Early season dorado caught offshore of Loreto

EARLY DORADO IN LORETO--One of 9 small dorado caught on large feathers trolled behind Loreto resident Bill Erhardt's boat Soledad during 2 outings last week east of Isla Carmen in search of marlin. PHOTO COURTESY OF BILL ERHARDT.

Three yellowtail caught at Loreto's Bajo San Bruno

LORETO SPRING YELLOWTAIL--Loreto yellowtail are expected to go into their spring spawn slow feeding period soon, but this week they were still very active on the San Bruno bajo north of town. Hotel Oasis anglers, from left, Jesus Marinez, Enrique Marinez, and Ricardo Marinez scored 34 forkies in 3 outings with the hotel's Capt. Francisco Martinez Castro. PHOTO COURTESY OF PATTY ZAPATA.

Yellowtail caught at Loreto

LORETO YELLOWTAIL INTRODUCTION--Ron Beitelspacher mans the gaff aboard his boat Sonrisa on Monday for Janice Wilkins who was visiting Loreto with her husband Rick from Idaho. The Wilkinses received an appropriate introduction to Baja fishing at San Bruno reef north of town where an epic yellowtail bite continues to produce scores of yellowtail for the Loreto fleet on most fishable days. PHOTO COURTESY OF LINDA BEITELSPACHER.

Yellowtail caught at Ensenada

ENSENADA JIG TOSS--Jay Johnson, left, of Ensenada, and Vonny's Fleet Capt. Beto Zamora were on the way in with a load of bottom fish when a school of bonita popped up and they tossed Vonny's Fleet's locally made aluminum surface jigs for a nice catch of bonito and a couple of 28-pound yellowtail. PHOTO COURTESY OF IVAN VILLARINO.

Hotel dog Lobo at Puerto Santo Tomas Resort

DON'T TELL SAM!--Baja dogs being Baja dogs, Lobo gets in some nice indoor cabin time during Ken Jones' trip to fish out of Sam Saenz' always neat and tidy Puerto Santo Tomas Resort just south of Ensenada. Said Jones, "Lobo made himself at home, with the help of a few biscuits. He's thinking, 'Don't tell Sam I'm in the house!'" PHOTO COURTESY OF KEN JONES.

Fish survey crew at San Quintin

SAN QUINTIN FISH COUNT--Abigail Dominguez, Maria Fernanda Hernandez, and Cesar Guerrero of the CICESE research center at Ensenada helped take a sportfishing catch survey at San Quintin conducted by the center's Jorge Rosales. PHOTO COURTESY OF JORGE ROSALES.

Longnosed puffer caught at San Lucas Cove

LONGNOSED PUFFER--The fish reported caught by Dan Wilson while kayak fishing at San Lucas Cove has been identified as a longnosed puffer by San Jose del Cabo species fishing specialist John Snow. Said Snow, "Let it loose in the bottom of the boat with a couple of inches of water and it becomes truly exceptional." PHOTO COURTESY OF DAN WILSON.

Dorado and sierra caught at San Jose del Cabo

INSHORE AT LOS CABOS--Britney Coolidge, left, and her mother Michele Coolidge, both of Seattle, Wash., used live sardina baits for a nice catch of sierra and dorado along the beaches of San Jose del Cabo. They fished with Gordo Banks Pangas Capt. Arturo Castillo aboard the charter panga Ginny out of the Puerto Los Cabos marina. PHOTO COURTESY OF ERIC BRICTSON.

Humback whale breaching at Cabo Pulmo

EAST CAPE SEA ACTION--Leaping humpback whales and friendly porpoise were common sightings this week during Vista Sea Sport diving trips to East Cape's Cabo Pulmo coral reef. A humpback whale, upper photo, breaches at Playa Iguana near Cabo Pulmo, and below, porpoise off Buena Vista. PHOTOS COURTESY OF SIMON CAZALY.

Leopard grouper caught at La Paz

LAS ARENAS SIDE--Dave Negrete and Kerry Smith with a real nice cabrilla caught during panga fishing with Tortuga Sportfishing on the Las Arenas side south of La Paz. They also scored on snapper and dorado with Tortuga's Capt. Nufo Green. PHOTO COURTESY OF GERARDO HERNANDEZ.

Yellowtail caught at Isla Cerralvo

ISLA CERRALVO BRUISERS--Mike Carter, left, fished with Capt. Felipe, right, of Agua Amarga south of La Paz for good action including 3 of these quality yellowtail at Isla Cerralvo. Carter noted plenty of spring "bobos" or gnats present near shore at the island, and said, "...but when you're catching bruisers, who cares?" Also fishing was Dan Binetti. PHOTO COURTESY OF MIKE CARTER.

Puertecitos launch ramp at high tide

Puertecitos launch ramp at low tide

PUERTECITOS BAJA TRIP--Scenes from Richard Hollo's recent exploratory trip to check out the Puertecitos area on the Sea of Cortez south of San Felipe: from top, the Puertecitos launch ramp at high and low tides...

Northern Baja view of the Islas Encantadas

A distant view of the Enchanted Islands chain...

Heavy work underway on the Gonzaga Bay road that will ultimately link to Baja's Highway Mex 1 at Laguna Chapala...

Beach palapas at Puertecitos

Palapas in "downtown" Puertecitos...

Small spotted bay bass caught at Puertecitos

...And a not-quite-ready-for-prime-time spotted bay bass hooked at the launch ramp with a Sabiki bait rig. PHOTOS COURTESY OF RICHARD HOLLO.

Yellowtail caught at Islas Encantadas

Fog bank at Islas Encatadas

ENCHANTED ISLANDS--John Tillander's recent fishing out of his home at Punta Bufeo south of San Felipe produced some nice northern Sea of Cortez yellowtail on a reef near Isla San Luis in the Enchanted Islands group. Below, a very rare fog bank on the Islas Encantadas. Said Tillander, "This is only the second time in 15 years that I have seen fog at Punta Bufeo. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JOHN TILLANDER.

Possile brotula species caught at San Carlos, Sonora

FISH SPECIES ID--Pete Jenista of Grants Pass, Ore., identified this fish caught at San Carlos, Sonora, by Fernando Garza (March 23, 2009, Mexico Fishing News) as a possible brotula. "According to my reference book, Fishes of the Tropical Eastern Pacific, I would venture that it is a Clark's Brotula, Brotula Clakae, since the other brotula species are reported to reach much smaller maximum sizes," Jenista said. PHOTO COURTESY OF LUIS AXEL CAMPILLO.

Mangrove restuarant at Teacapan

Mangrove fishing at Teacapan

MANGROVES-TO-LUNCH-TABLE--Anglers fishing with Flota Bibi Fleet in the Teacapan mangrove system just south of Mazatlan often enjoy having their catch specially prepared at a nearby seafood restaurant just across the estuary. Fishing with Flota Bibi Fleet's Tadeo Hernandez and Capt. Victor on this trip were anglers Eddy Kreutzer, Bob Gray, Gordie McDonald, and Pat MacKinnon, who feasted on a catch of three species of snappers. PHOTOS COURTESY OF TADEO HERNANDEZ.

Two large dorado caught at Puerto Vallarta

DORADO AT SAYULITA--Boats fishing the commercial buoys off Sayulita north of Puerto Vallarta found action on mixed species including this pair of quality dorado landed aboard the Master Baiter's Sportfishing & Tackle charter boat Mamba Negra with Capt. Carlos and first mate Juan. The big dodos hit on goggle-eye baits cast near the buoys. PHOTO COURTESY OF STAN GABRUK.

Large roosterfish caught at Puerto Vallarta

ISLAS MARIETAS FISHING--A day of fishing at Puerto Vallarta's Islas Marietas produced a catch of 7 of these roosterfish, 6 jack crevalle, and some snappers and mixed species aboard the Master Baiter's Sportfishing & Tackle charter boat Magnifico with Capt. Alonso and first mate Carlos. Fishing aboard the Magnifico were anglers Doug Tuffley, Brad Tuffley, and Brad Novak. PHOTO COURTESY OF STAN GABRUK.

Aerial view of La Lobera

La Lobera cllose-up

Sea lions on beach at La Lobera

Fish survey crew at La Lobera

Abalone culture facility at La Lobera

LA LOBERA--The amazing La Lobera bluff-top sea crater between San Quintin and El Rosario is connected to the Pacific Ocean by a cave and hosts a colony of sea lions on its tiny and very sheltered interior beach. Nearby is the Asociacion Pesquera REGASA abalone culture facility. The Mex 1 turnoff to La Lobera is at Km 47 south of San Quintin and the good dirt access road to the beach is about 3 or 4 kilometers long. The facility was recently visited by the sportfishing catch survey team of Jorge Rosales of CICESE in Ensenada. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JORGE ROSALES AND GOOGLE EARTH.

Baja coastal fishing reports and articles.

Ensenada fishing reports and articles.

Puerto Santo Tomas fishing reports and articles.

Erendira fishing reports and articles.

San Quintin fishing reports and articles.

Magdalena Bay fishing reports and articles.

Cabo San Lucas fishing reports and articles.

San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos) fishing reports and articles.

East Cape fishing reports and articles.

La Paz fishing reports and articles.

Loreto fishing reports and articles.

Mulege fishing reports and articles.

Santa Rosalia fishing reports and articles.

Bahia de los Angeles (L.A. Bay) fishing reports and articles.

San Felipe fishing reports and articles.

Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco) fishing reports and articles.

San Carlos (Sonora) fishing reports and articles .

Mazatlan fishing reports and articles .

Puerto Vallarta fishing reports and articles.

Ixtapa Zihuatanejo fishing reports and articles.

Huatulco fishing reports and articles.

Cancun fishing reports and articles.

Mexico coastal fishing reports and articles.

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