HUGE SCHOOLS OF SARDINA AND MULLET BAIT FISH CLOSE TO SHORE
July 4, 2004, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, San Jose del Cabo fishing, Baja California Sur, Mexico:
The start of summer has brought increased crowds of tourists to San Jose del Cabo, though percentage wise there were not all that many anglers and sportfishing fleets were only moderately busy.
Mostly sunny days at San Jose del Cabo, with temperatures in the 90s, increasing humidity, slight ocean swells and very little wind have all combined to make for great conditions for pursuing outdoor activities. Ocean water temperatures varied from 77 to 82 degrees throughout most of the San Jose del Cabo area and fishing action really broke wide open for a variety of species, with much of the best action being found within five miles of shore and some of the time within one mile.
Huge schools of mullet and sardina congregated close to the shoreline and were attracting gamefish within casting range of the beaches. Daily San Jose del Cabo fishing included dorado, yellowfin tuna, wahoo, sailfish, striped marlin, pargo, roosterfish and jack crevalle. San Jose del Cabo anglers also reported hook ups with larger and more exotic species such as black and blue marlin and the overall prospects for the summer season seem to be excellent.
Dorado was the number one fish being caught at San Jose del Cabo, being found practically everywhere, striking on trolled lures and once the schooling fish were found they would hit on all types of bait. Average size fish was 5 to 15 pounds, but there were also many bull dorado to over 40 pounds mixed in, charter boats were accounting for 5 to 40 dorado hook ups per day, with many fish being released, especially the smaller females. Yellowfin tuna were not nearly as thick around San Jose del Cabo as were the dorado, but they are were being found everyday in limited numbers, mainly hitting on sardinas or smaller hoochie lures and weighing 5 to 20 pounds. Wahoo made a surprise showing in recent days as well, hot spot was in the vicinity of the Gordo Banks and closer off of Punta Gorda, a couple of 'hoo were accounted for by San Jose del Cabo anglers using live sardinas without wire leader, which is lucky, but many other strikes came on trolled rapalas and skirted lead heads, including both triple and quadruple hook ups, though most boats felt lucky to have one or two of these sleek speedsters in their combined catch The wahoo were ranging in size from 20 to 45 pounds. With the abundance of baitfish and the warm blue water now in the San Jose del Cabo area we look for this action to continue to improve.
There was at least one 500 pound class blue marlin reportedly landed off of a Palmilla cruiser, striking on a petrolero lure and taking a couple of hours to land, actually the fish died down deep and was hand lined to the surface. While a super panga out of La Playita reportedly hooked into a black marlin estimated to be over 500 pounds while trolling a live mullet on the Gordo Banks, this fish was fought for close to an hour on the 50 pound line and was brought to the side of the panga before the hook pulled free. The most common billfish continue to be striped marlin and they were found in good numbers throughout the zone, as close as two miles from shore, striking on lures as well as bait. Sailfish were also found in similar areas, but were not as numerous.
San Jose del Cabo beach fishermen accounted for some trophy sized roosterfish to 50 pounds and snook to 30 pounds, but the bite was not wide open and took much local knowledge and dedication to be in the right place at the right time, which the past week was off of La Playita beach and just to the north and south.
(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from San Jose del Cabo and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for San Jose del Cabo may be found at Mexfish.com's main San Jose del Cabo page.