WIDE-OPEN WAHOO BITE FOR LA PLAYITA SPORTFISHING PANGAS
Oct. 3, 2004, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, La Playita, San Jose del Cabo, Baja fishing, Mexico:
The panga fleets from San Jose del Cabo encountered possibly the most wide-open bite for wahoo in recent years. For about five days running, San Jose del Cabo pangas were reporting an average of 4 to 8 wahoo in the 25 to 50 pound class each morning, with many other hookups lost, free swimming fish could be seen in all directions as other wahoo were being battled on the line and the normally elusive 'hoo were striking just about anything thrown into the water, including sardinas, chunk bait, yo-yos and of course the normal array of trolling lures.
It is a rare day when there are so many wahoo in the water that the yellowfin tuna or dorado could not even compete with them, but this was actually the case midweek on the Iman Bank, while on other days the Inner Gordo Bank also turned on, as the bite seemed to switch back and forth as where they would bite best on a certain day. Veteran Baja anglers were hard pressed to remember when they had seen such red hot action for wahoo and they were also impressed with the numbers of yellowfin tuna and dorado.
The fall season has now officially started in Los Cabos, the relentless summer heat is over, threats of tropical storms minimal and increased crowds of visitors are being greeted by ideal weather conditions as well as some incredible sportfishing action.
San Jose del Cabo days have been clear and sunny, highs reaching 90 degrees and lows a very comfortable 72 degrees. Ocean swells have been virtually nonexistent and clear blue water is being found within several miles of shore. Average water temperature throughout the San Jose del Cabo area has been 81 degrees and anglers were keeping very busy reeling in billfish, yellowfin tuna, dorado, wahoo, skipjack and a variety of other game fish. Live bait was a bit scattered, although on most mornings there was a mix of sardinas, mullet or caballito available. Fleets were fishing areas on the Pacific and into the Sea of Cortez, with the best San Jose del Cabo fishing action in recent days being found on the fishing grounds between the Gordo Banks and Iman. From the fish counts this past week it appears that anglers are in for very promising action the next couple of months.
Tuna were found throughout the area, mainly schooling on the high spots closer to shore, most of the fish were football sized, 8 to 15 pounds, but mixed in the same schools were a handful of larger specimens up to 60 pounds. The best action was found while chumming the tuna to the surface and then fly-lining live sardinas on light tackle. Over the weekend the San Jose del Cabo wahoo frenzy did subside and tuna were dominating the catches once again, with 10 to 20 fish per boat common.
Dorado action varied everyday, some morning San Jose del Cabo boats averaged 2 or 3, while on other days it was more like 6 to 8 per charter, they were striking on bait and lures in the same areas as were the tuna and wahoo, average dorado weighed 8 to 20 pounds, but several impressive bulls to over 40 pounds were accounted for.
Blue marlin, striped marlin and sailfish dominated the billfish activity, with areas on the Pacific and off of Chileno now reporting increased numbers of striped marlin, sizes ranged from 100 to 160 pounds.
Other miscellaneous San Jose del Cabo fishing catches of bottom species included amberjack, grouper, dogtooth snapper, cabrilla, pargo and bonita. There was no report of much action for shore anglers, besides a good bite for small croakers off of the La Playita beach.
(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.