GORDO BANKS PANGAS FISHING AND PUERTO LOS CABOS REPORT
Feb. 17, 2007, Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas Los Cabos, San Jose del Cabo, Baja California Sur, Mexico:
The San Jose del Cabo charter panga fleets launching at La Playita reported approximately 64 charters for the week, for a fish count of: 42 dorado, 28 pargo, 18 amberjack, 2 sailfish, 9 striped marlin, 134 yellowfin tuna, 16 cabrilla, 22 bonito, 12 hammerhead shark, and 365 black skipjack.
Moderate crowds of vacationing tourists at Los Cabos have been greeted by the typically unpredictable late winter weather, changing daily, a mix of warm sunshine, cool cloud cover, and chilly early mornings, but with overall very pleasant conditions.
On Sunday afternoon the wind really kicked up out of the south, howling to over 20 miles per hour, pushing in cooler and greener Pacific waters. San Jose del Cabo fishing fleets were searching throughout the area for signs of activity.
Striped marlin action moved further offshore where cleaner water was found, so this fishing was primarily for cruisers able to handle rougher ocean conditions.
Water temperatures at this area of Baja California averaged 69 to 71 degrees, about average for this time of year. Bait fish have remained plentiful, mainly a mix of sardinas and mackerel. Most of the time sufficient supplies of bait were available.
Sportfishing fleets at the tip of Mexico's Baja peninsula have been fishing mostly in the direction of the Sea of Cortez where the striped marlin action has shifted and all around offshore action has been most productive.
Local La Playita panga fleets have concentrated their efforts from the Inner Gordo Bank north to the Iman Bank.
The most common catch has been yellowfin tuna in the 20 to 40 pound range. Large schools of tuna have been seen feeding in these two areas, but they have not always been eager to cooperate.
Yellowfin tuna have been striking best on fresh sardina baits, either dead or alive, while chumming and drifting over the high spots. The lighter fluorocarbon leaders have proved to be more successful.
The daily catch for sport anglers has been 1 of 2 yellowfin tuna and possibly a mix of few different bottom fish, including amberjack, pargo, cabrilla, bonita. and grouper.
The Mexican commercial pangueros have reported excellent fishing during afternoon outings for the last several days, with catches averaging 150 to 300 kilos of fish per panga, all sold to local markets in the whole at the rate of about one dollar per pound.
Dorado were still being found throughout the San Jose del Cabo area of Baja, but numbers were limited. This can be expected when the water temperature is near 70 degrees. Surprisingly, most of the dorado boated were 15 pounds or over, including some bulls topping 30 pounds.
Inshore fishing has remained limited, with a scattering of sierra being found by early morning shore anglers, plus some small to medium sized roosterfish. Commercial Mexican shrimp boats have invaded local waters, resting inshore during the daytime and dragging their gear at night.
The Puerto Los Cabos Marina construction project has been regrouped and is now working overtime to be able to actually have the marina open and operational within weeks. It seems almost unbelievable that this seemingly never-ending project will finally be nearing completion.
For the San Jose del Cabo panga fleets still based on the beach of La Playita, operations are becoming more cramped and difficult with each passing day and everyone is hoping for the project to be finished as quickly as possible.
Whale watching continues at its peak off Los Cabos, predominately for humpback whales, but also with some California gray whales mixed in.