TOUGH FISHING CONDITIONS FOR
LA PLAYITA FLEET SPORT PANGAS
Nov. 14, 2004, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, La Playita, San Jose del Cabo, Baja sport fishing, Mexico:
This week San Jose del Cabo weather turned a bit more winter like, though the high temperatures still were reaching into the 80s. There were more scattered clouds and persistent winds from the north, but on other days switching to the south.
This has caused unstable rough ocean conditions and declining water temperatures around San Jose del Cabo, now averaging 75 to 78 degrees.
Bait continued to be scattered due to the huge demand. San Jose del Cabo pangueros were searching hard to net adequate amounts each morning. Some days they were only able to find very limited supplies of small sardinas, while on other days the bait was of good size.
Overall San Jose del Cabo fishing was much more difficult this week, though there were some very respectable catches accounted for. The problem was that it has not been consistent from day to day, and the main reason has been the strong gusting winds that has limited where fleets could fish.
San Jose del Cabo charter boats worked the waters from the Pacific to Chileno and north of Punta Gorda, with the most successful action being found off Chileno.
Crowds of tourists continue to travel to Los Cabos in large groups and local businesses have been bustling. In another couple of weeks after the Thanksgiving Holiday there will most certainly be a lull as people start to prepare for Christmas.
The most common species being caught were yellowfin tuna, dorado, and a couple different varieties of skipjack dominating the action.
San Jose del Cabo yellowfin tuna were not as active as they had been, but most boats did land a handful of them, the majority small football size of 8 to 12 pounds. When the weather cooperated, San Jose del Cabo anglers found fair action for larger tuna up to 80 pounds while chumming and chunk bait fishing on the Inner Gordo Banks.
Dorado were found together with the tuna, and boats averaged from 1 or 2, up to a dozen per day. The best bite was on floating debris off Chileno with large schools ranging to 8 to 20 pounds congregating underneath.
Skipjack were the most numerous fish caught recently. The variety the locals call barrilete blanco were number one on the catch list. They are not big, averaging only a few pounds, but the flesh is similar to that of the yellowfin.
Wahoo action continued to be very slow at San Jose del Cabo, though some are being hooked each day. We all hope that there will still be the late November bite on these highly sought after game fish that is so traditional in this region. The wahoo that have been landed came from south of San Jose del Cabo, as well as from the Gordo Banks, on a mix of trolling lures and live bait. They averaging anywhere form 25 to 40 pounds. After such a wide open start to the wahoo season back in late September, catches have been slim and this is the season when they are typically at their peak. All we can do is be optimistic that they come on strong before the water temperature at San Jose del Cabo drops into the lower 70s and they migrate to more southern waters.
Billfish action included a mix of sailfish, striped marlin and black marlin. One of the more impressive catches this past week was taken out of the panga Alicia with skipper Jesus from La Playita beach. The family trio of Forrest, Michele and Steven Packard visiting from San Marcos, Calif., hooked into a black marlin while slow trolling a small skipjack on 40-pound tackle in the vicinity of the Gordo Banks. After a little more than a one-hour strenuous fight, they managed to bring the fish to gaff and haul it aboard the 22-foot panga. At the beach the black was officially weighed at 407 pounds, very remarkable for such light tackle.
Off the beach there was not much action being talked about besides some early and late sierra activity and a few small jacks. Now with the water temperature dipping we do expect more numbers of sierra to move in.
(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.