Santa Rosalia, Mexico:
Wide-Open Fishing For Yellowtail At Isla San Marcos

Jan. 22, 2005, Mike Kanzler, Isla San Marcos, Santa Rosalia, Baja fishing, Mexico:

Santa Rosalia just had another wide-open fishing week on yellowtail, once the wind stopped blowing. The wind started at Santa Rosalia on Wednesday and blew all the way until this Wednesday, seven solid days of sitting around going stir crazy with no fishing. I did keep busy on the heavy metal site, Dark Lair.

Thursday was the first calm day, with still a little lump on the fishing water but doable, and up to today, Santa Rosalia had nice windless conditions.

Santa Rosalia air temperatures are in the low-50s in the mornings and nights, with mid-70s for the days. Sea water temperatures are 63-65 degrees, with very poor visibility of maybe 15 feet or so. The reason for this is it's rich with all sorts of plankton and whale food, stuff so thick it literally comes up on the line making it brownish green. Yes, there are many finback whales feeding in the channel between Isla San Marcos and the peninsula of Baja.

The fishing is good at Santa Rosalia.

I fished the last three days, with Alan Lewis on my boat every day. He would meet me at my dock in his boat, and then get in mine to go fishing.

Here's how our fishing week went:

On Thursday, after not fishing for a straight week, I took a guess that the bait would still be at the same place and it was, nice big platinos (Spanish jack mackerel) off the cliffs north of San Lucas. To make it easy, we started fishing at the good old 110 bajo, where we met up with a few other boats coming from the San Lucas Cove trailer park, mostly tin boats. We made some drifts and got a few bites here and there putting 50% of hooked yellowtail in the box as did most on this day. The yellowtail were somewhat closer to the bottom and where cutting everyone off in the rocks. It was still a good enough day after such a long down time. Alan and I got 6 out of about 10 or more hooked fish.

On our second day, Friday, and with a great sunrise at the Santa Rosalia bait grounds, we headed out to see if maybe the fishing had improved overnight. It took about a second to see it had birds and yellowtail chasing bait across the surface, out over the outer bajos in deep water 180-260 feet deep. In the next 20 or so minutes we put 5 yellowtail in the box, some on the surface iron and others on flylined bait. After a fashion, the surface thing died out. However this was when it really got going. Just by soaking live bait with no weight on drift after drift, we got double hook up after double hook up. It was outrageous fishing, too easy, and to top it off yellowtail in the high-20s with many in the mid-30 pound class. We caught 18 yellowtail and only lost one fish all day! I was one tired pup and my gut still hurts. I don't wear a fighting belt EVER!

Today, Saturday, it was the same fishing story at Santa Rosalia. We fished a little longer than the last two days and had a somewhat slower bite, but still got 10 fish. I'll take it any day of the week. The other boats that fished out of San Lucas Cove that caught the same bait we did caught good numbers of yellowtail too. The commercial panga which stayed out past 3 p.m. came in with 25 to 30 yellowtail as reported to me by Alan back at the trailer park.

For the boats up from Punta Chivato and Mulege, it was not so good. They had mackerel and bigeyes caught in shallow water, and those don't act the same as the deep water baits we're using. A lot of the boats got the skunk, I'm sorry to say.

All in all, it was another great fishing week at Santa Rosalia.

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