San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos), Mexico



Oct. 3-9, 2005, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, San Jose del Cabo, Mexico Fishing Report:

Hurricane Otis made a close pass by the southern peninsula creating high storm surf at San Jose del Cabo which shut down fishing operations for several days. On Tuesday, San Jose del Cabo skies were clear again and the seas had calmed down, allowing sportfishing fleets to get back into action. The San Jose del Cabo fishing area saw beautiful sunny skies and no more rainfall at all. The surf conditions did pick up some on Saturday and Sunday, but not enough to shut down panga launching off of La Playita.

The bait fish situation off of La Playita has been a problem, with sardinas scattered and this left commercial pangueros working over time to try and find what remaining bait fish they could in order to supply the charter boats. They were able to come up with a few sardinas and mullet, but definitely not enough to chum with.

Fishing water clarity became stirred up as well due to last week’s choppy ocean conditions. It was murky green in some spots, but as the week progressed it became much cleaner and water temperatures were ranging from 80 to 85 degrees.

Despite the limited bait, the sportfishing panga fleets launching out of San Jose del Cabo did find some respectable action for a variety of species.

The most productive area continued to be in the vicinity of the Iman Bank. This spot attracted a large concentration of fishing boats, including pangas and cruisers from the East Cape region.

Yellowfin tuna dominated the bite, but in the same spot anglers also caught dorado, sailfish, rainbow runner, dogtooth snapper, grouper, amberjack, triggerfish, skipjack and bonito.

The East Cape fleet was able to catch giant Humboldt squid off of La Ribera and they were chumming and using strips of these squid to catch good numbers of tuna in the 10 to 20 pound weight range.

San Jose sportfishing fleets also got into the action, but on some days they found that the boats with the cut squid were doing much better than they were with the few sardinas they had.

Overall most boats were ending up catching anywhere from 4 to 10 yellowfin tuna per outing with a handful of other species mixed in. Several dogtooth snapper close to 50 pounds were landed. These were hooked while using larger bait, mainly green jacks, cocineros, that could be caught on sardinas on the same banks.

The billfish action was best off of Cabo San Lucas, with a mix of striped and blue marlin being found. Sailfish were throughout the area, with good numbers being found in the same area of Iman where the tuna bite was going on. Dorado were still very scarce, though about every other boat did have one of them mixed in their catch.

There was no action to report from San Jose del Cabo surf anglers due to the lack of inshore bait fish and higher surf conditions.

The combined San Jose del Cabo panga fleets from La Playita sent out approximately 85 charters for the week with anglers accounting for: 2 striped marlin, 18 sailfish, 420 yellowfin tuna, 42 dorado, 14 dogtooth snapper, 16 amberjack, 18 grouper, 80 barred pargo, 35 rainbow runners, 80 triggerfish and 15 bonito.

(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's main San Jose del Cabo page.