San Felipe, Mexico



Aug. 25, 2006, Adrian Sosa, Puertecitos and Islas Encantadas (Enchanted Islands), San Felipe fishing, Baja California, Mexico:

On our trip down to the Islas Encantadas, my dad, Luis Sosa, and I took our 26-foot Skipjack, Panacea, down to launch out of Puertecitos.

Road conditions to Puertecitos were very nice until the last 30 kilometers or so, then pretty rough. Word of warning. They were laying out gravel and dirt for road improvement on the last stretch of road before Puertecitos. Much of the dirt being laid was not getting leveled right away which left 3 to 3 1/2 foot dirt embankments to cross, not an easy task when you're towing. Four wheel drive and a small shovel may be in order until they finish the improvements. On the positive side, it looks like they are setting up to lay new pavement for long distances where the now potholed road runs.

The fishing was great. We fished from Aug. 20 to 23rd. There were good schools of sierras running around the northern Enchanted Islands. We got a few in the 5 pound class.

Isla San Luis showed us the best spotted bay bass fishing we'd ever seen, some in the 14-15 inch variety.

We also did some nice bottom fishing around the numerous pinnacles and rock formations in about 50 feet of water. My dad pulled out a nice Pargo of about 8 pounds.

We also trolled around the Enchanted Islands and north back to Puertecitos, which put 2 nice Dorados in the cooler. Both about 20 pounds. Those were fun.

Oh yeah, and the triggerfish were everywhere. It was a trigger a cast if you wanted them, some reaching the 10 pound class! Tough customers.

Overall, we managed about 15 different species and came home with some of the best fillets imaginable. It was a great fishing trip.

We caught the Dorados on Zuker feathers in Mexican Flag, always a favorite color for them.

The Sierras were caught while we casted Krocodiles into diving birds on the lee side of Isla Miramar. It looked like the fish were working the bait from below and the birds bombed from above. Quite a sight. We also used the Krocs to catch many of the Spotted Bay Bass along the rocky shores.

Most of the bottom fish were caught using whole squid bait we brought with us. We tried to make bait, but most of what we found were not catchable on Sabiki's. We also tossed a cast net at some bait balls. This bait looked like small Mullets, in a small cove off Isla San Luis, but they proved hard to catch with a shallow rocky bottom that inhibited the net from functioning as intended. I guess that's what keeps the seiners away, so I won't complain!

We stayed on the boat for the 3 nights were there. The 26 foot Skipjack has a stove, refrigerator, sleeps 4 and, most importantly, has a shower! Those evening showers were very welcomed after a long day in the Baja sun!

Water temperatures in the shallower areas were in the mid to high 80's. Even out 10 miles in open water was in the mid 80's, very warm waters.

The weather was very nice by Baja summer standards with highs in the high 90's to low 100's during the day and "cooling" off to the high 80's at night. There was no significant wind to speak of during the night. We kinda wished we had a breeze blowing to cool us off more. There was a light offshore breeze of maybe 5 knots each day starting around 1 p.m. and steady until 6 p.m. or so. The seas were small, usually 1-3 feet. Occasional rockers came in as we fished the sea mounts off San Luis and trolled the open waters, but we had generally calm conditions.

Our approximate overall fish count by species was:

Dorado, 2 to 20 pounds.

Pargo, 3 to 8 pounds.

Sierras, 3 to 5 pounds, and we lost several more. Those teeth are razors and wire leaders weren't getting bit.

Triggerfish, I can't count that high. Every stop we made had a pile. We filled the cooler with these.

Spotted Bay Bass, we kept about 20 of the better sized ones. We probably released three times that many.

Corvina, 1. Only about 12 inches long. Released. It could have been a Corbina or a Croaker. I didn't try to make the distinction.

Various grunts and porgies, 20. We used many of these as large baits trying to entice a big Leopard Grouper out at the sea mounts, but the Groupers weren't cooperating. We theorized the waters may be too warm and they headed for deeper waters.

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