San Jose del Cabo (Los Cabos), Mexico



July 16, 2006, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas, San Jose del Cabo fishing, Baja California Sur, Mexico:

The tropical storm season is becoming more active. This week two hurricanes Bud and Carlotta developed off the coast of mainland Mexico. They passed within 400 to 600 miles of Los Cabos. The main affect was on the ocean, where swells increased up to eight feet and combined with southern wind, created very choppy seas for a couple of days.

The combined San Jose del Cabo sportfishing panga fleet launching from La Playita beach sent out approximately 56 charters for the week with anglers accounting for an overall fish count of: 1 black marlin, 4 sailfish, 8 striped marlin, 52 yellowfin tuna, 44 dorado, 38 bonito and 84 combined pargo species.

With the construction of the Puerto Los Cabos Marina now in its final stages at San Jose del Cabo, this was the first real test. The swell caused some minor damage to the northern jetty, where rocks were washed away due to the heavy surf. There also was high surf that came unscathed right through the middle entrance and shut down panga operations off of La Playita on Friday, July 7.

Maybe this will be a warning to the port contractors that they should pick up their pace on the jetty work before a hurricane strikes directly and causes a major setback to their scheduled opening of marina operations this fall.

The water temperatures in the Los Cabos fishing area dropped into the upper 70s along inshore, but on the fishing grounds from the Gordo Banks to San Luis it remained in the lower 80s. Clarity was stirred up and bait fish were a bit more scattered.

Sportfishing action for yellowfin tuna actually improved and there were fair counts of dorado as well. The Gordo Banks showed more signs of life over the weekend, as yellowfin tuna in the 12 to 20 pound range were found feeding on the surface and would readily strike on sardinas and even fly anglers were doing well on the tuna and dorado. Tuna were more numerous than were the dorado, but some very respectable dorado weighing up to 45 pounds were accounted for.

The fishing areas from La Fortuna to Iman Bank were holding larger tuna, as anglers trolling with sardinas or bolito were hooking into fish that ranged in the 50 to 100 pound class. The tuna were striking best on lighter lines and leaders, so this meant more lost fish, but for the more experienced anglers there was a good chance at landing several nice tuna. One commercial panguero ended up with 27 yellowfin.

There was also a 400-pound class black marlin landed by Capt. Modesto from a La Playita panga.

Not much to report off the bottom or along the shoreline. Now that the weather has settled down this should give the bait fish a chance to congregate closer to the shoreline and in turn attract more game fish along the beaches.

During the first part of the week surf fishermen reported the first significant bite for snook, while fishing with sardinas and mullet near the southern rock jetty in front of the San Jose Estuary. There were at least six snook reportedly landed from this one small area that all weighed in the 25 to 45 pound range.

(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.