SIERRA PRESENT AND BITING FOR FISHING BOATS AT PUERTO PENASCO
Aug. 15, 2004, Stuart Burnett, Rocky Point, Mexico Fishing Report:
Fished 8/14 and 8/15 out of Puerto Penasco. Launched Saturday morning about 7:30 a.m from the downtown harbor to find a pretty good wind out of the east. Seas were fairly choppy, but fishable. We decided to head down to the island and troll.
Spotted some birds working on the way down and dropped a couple of lures. Picked up one nice-size sierra. Once at the island, I put out a spread of daisy chain jetheads, one Mirrorlure, and two blue/chrome Yozuri Hydromags (like Rapalas). We looped around the widow maker rocks and trolled the edges of the current breaks as the tide came in. Caught three very large sierra. Also released a large needlefish. There were lots of needlefish in the area and they seemed to be feeding right along with the sierra, but it was easy to tell their strikes since they tend to jerk the lure a few times, giving an interrupted "zing" on the reel clickers. The sierra, however, would strike and run once they took the lure. We had a blast trolling the area and would get a strike on almost every loop we made around the widow makers.
We made a pass up and back in tight to the island to try for leopard grouper, but no takers. By afternoon, the water had layed down and was flat. We pulled lines and decided to run out to blue water to a spot about 35 miles south of the harbor where I caught dorado last year. There were a few sargasso patties in close by the island and I was hoping we'd find some more further out. The water stayed green and about 88 degrees until about 12 miles further out than the island. Very pretty blue water, lots of flying fish, but no sargasso anywhere. We changed directions a few times, but nothing out there but pretty blue water. Never saw any birds working or surface action at all.
About 2:30, we called it quits on the blue water and ran back towards Penasco. We stopped at a reef about 20 miles south and tried bottom fishing for a bit. Using small candy squids, we caught one decent red snapper and an eel (released). Got back into the harbor just before 5:00 p.m.
On Sunday, the water was flat and we figured we'd try for some more sierra. We were at the island in less than an hour and trolling as the tide started to come in. The tide was low enough that all of the widow maker rocks were exposed and we could actually see the ridge that forms along the outer rocks. Again, we trolled the current riffs and the deep channel in between the rocks. A couple of needlefish strikes, but no sierra. The birds were working on and off further south, so we trolled down that way, only to end up in huge feeding frenzy. Birds diving all around us and three lines went off at the same time. This time, however, it was ladyfish that were driving bait right up to the surface. We caught and released several of these and took a couple back for the guys at the dock. Again, a lot of fun, especially with the multiple hookups. These were very large ladyfish and put up a decent fight.
At one point, as I was reeling in a ladyfish, I was looking at the water and we seemed to be surrounded by air bubbles. Upon closer look, it wasn‚t bubbles at all: it was fish scale. The ocean was awash in small silver scale from the feeding frenzy taking place below us. Judging by the scale, the feast was sardines.
After another pass close into the island, we pulled lines and ran out to the Caballo reef to try bottom fishing. The current was flowing pretty strong, and combined with the wind, we never got anchored the way we wanted. We decide to just motor over the reef and use the motor to hold us in place. We tried this several times, but nobody home down there.
All in all, a fun weekend getaway and we got to pull on a few decent fish. The weather was hot and humid, but no storms. We could see some huge thunderheads inland, but sunny on the water. Very few gringos around, but lots of Mexican families on vacation.
(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from Rocky Point and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for Rocky Point may be found at Mexfish.com's main Rocky Point (Puerto Penasco) page.