Puerto Vallarta, Mexico



Sept. 4, 2006, Mark Tamim, Puerto Vallarta, Mexico:

I just got back from Puerto Vallarta. I went on 3 fishing trips.

Day 1: My father and I signed up for some inshore fishing aboard the "Dream Catcher" with Captain Jose Cruz. We cruised over to the rocky points just beyond Punta de Mita and started the day by slow trolling live bait fish while casting poppers as well. Fishing was a bit slow. Four hours produced a couple Needlefish, 1 Jack Crevalle, and 1 Barred Pargo. We saw some small Roosterfish, but couldn't get them to bite.

Afterwards, we cruised over to a nearby reef for some bottom fishing. We were nailing small grouper left and right using metal jigs. Two hours produced 20 grouper and 1 red snapper. We saw a Marlin go crazy on a feeding frenzy of Jacks nearby. By the time we got to where he was feeding, the Marlin was gone. Even though we didn't get a shot at him, it was one of the coolest things I have ever seen.

Day 2: My father and I went aboard the "Marla II" with Captain Danny Osuna for offshore fishing at Corbeteña. This is a day I'll never forget. We had heard fishing for the big cows had been slow as of late, so I requested to Danny that he target fish that would definitely bite. Danny definitely came through for us.

We started the day with a 40 pound Pargo. That damn fish tugged like hell and I had the drag set to the max so he wouldn't cut us off at the rocks. Then we spent the day targeting a mixed bag of fish, primarily rainbow runners. We would cast live bait at feeding frenzies and were nailing rainbow runners like crazy. We ended up with a dozen. We also nailed Bonito left and right by trolling and casting metal spoons. We used them as bait for the Pargo and for slow trolling in case something big would come our way. Finally, we caught some of the biggest damn triggerfish I have ever seen. Usually, I don't get all excited about triggers, but these were huge and we got plenty of them, a dozen total.

The pargo were hitting bonito cut in half. The rainbow runners were hitting small live bait fish. We would throw them in front of feeding bonito and the rainbow runners would take them on the skirts of the feeding frenzy. We would set the reel in free spool and let them swallow the bait before setting the hook.

After a 10 hour day, we were absolutely pooped and headed home. Danny is by far one of the most talented fishermen and captains I have been associated with. And I have fished a lot all of over the world. I highly recommend this dude. There were a dozen boats out there that day and they weren't catching squat except us. Every time a boat passed us, other clients were pissed off watching us with bent rods practically the whole day!

Day 3: A couple days after hurricane John left town, we wanted one more shot at Corbeteña. Unfortunately, Danny was all booked up, so we tried a super panga, the "Mini Baiter," with Capitan Armando. I knew we were in for a rough day the minute we left the marina. The sea was really really rough. It took us around 2 hours to make it to Corbeteña and our boat was flopping around like crazy. Though the conditions were rough, we immediately hooked up with 2 Bonitos and slow trolled them for large tuna or Marlin. After around 3 hours of no action at all, and feeling sea sick, we decided to head back to shore for some inshore action. The long trip inshore was definitely worth it. We immediately got into action with a rooster, the largest needlefish I have ever seen, bonito and jacks. Looking back, we wished we had stuck inshore fishing all day. In 2 hours, we hooked up with just over a dozen fish.

Overall, I was very pleased with the fishing that Puerto Vallarta has to offer. My only disappointment was that the cow class tuna were no shows. This time last year yielded big time action on the tunas, so it was a little bit of a bummer to find out that they were not around. Other than that, we had a lovely time.

(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from Puerto Vallarta and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for Puerto Vallarta may be found at Mexfish.com's main Puerto Vallarta page.