Fish Report

July 24, 2017
BY: GARY GRAHAM

Cabo San Lucas

Fishing still seems to be sputtering along. There’s an occasional slow day followed by a few days when the boats return with flags flying. Some yellowfin tuna in the mid 200-pound class certainly brightened the day for some anglers recently.

The usual array of summer species are beginning to filter into the area. A Pacific shortbill spearfish was taken recently, confirming that their rarity in these waters is a myth. However, seldom are there more than two or three caught in an entire year.

fish-killer.JPGAs the sea temps begin to climb into summer, confirmed by the arrival of sailfish offshore, there was also a number of blue and striped marlin caught, as well as at least one swordfish (they usually arrive a bit earlier in late May or early June). There have also been a few very large dorado, plus yellowfin tuna, wahoo and grouper.

Cabo Climate: Daytime temps have averaged in the mid to high 80s and the nights averaged around 75 to 80 degrees.

Sea Conditions: The Pacific side has been mostly rough and bumpy, with surface breezes blowing in from the westerly directions. From the Finger Bank and southerly to the 1000 fathom curve, down across the Golden Gate Bank and the Jaime Bank, water temps have all been around 78 to 81 degrees. Cabo Falso and out to the inner-Gordo Bank averaged 73 degrees. The 95 Fathom Spot and the 1150 Fathom Spot and on up to Las Frailes, was all at 78 degrees.

Best Fishing Area: Golden Gate Bank and the 1150 Fathom Spot produced equal numbers of billfish. The Herradura produced the most dorado, and the yellowfin tuna were scattered on both sides of the peninsula.

Best Bait/Lure: The billfish were continuously being stubborn and those that were caught were primarily on live bait.

Live Bait Supply: A very good bait supply was/is available at the $3.00 per bait rate, paid direct to the bait vendor at time of receipt.

Puerto Los Cabos

Inshore fishing action has slowed with the higher surf conditions; there was just a scattering of roosterfish and jack crevalle. Most fleets are working the grounds from Iman to the San Luis Banks; this is where the most productive all-around action was encountered.

With the warming currents, the fast action for huachinango has slowed down, though there were still some to be caught. They were all caught on yo-yo jigs, off of Iman and San Luis Banks, along with a mix of Eastern Pacific bonito coming in at up to 10 pounds. These were the same grounds where good sized yellowfin tuna were schooling, not in huge numbers, but tuna in the 30 to 80-pound range were being hooked into on a daily basis.

These yellowfin were also striking the yo-yo jigs well this past week, not something they commonly do. Usually they prefer various whole or cut baits. Besides striking on yo-yo jigs, these tuna were also hitting while drift fishing or slow-trolling baits.

Most charters were having chances at least for one or two tuna. Others landed as many as three or four. Many fish were lost as well, because these yellowfin were a bit line shy; most anglers were using 40 to 50-pound leaders in order to have better chances at hooking up, resulting in a greater percentage of lost fish as well.

We have seen a couple of nice-sized amberjack recently. This is the time of year when we see the largest of these ambers of the season; it’s not uncommon to see fish up to 80 pounds now.

Ocean temperatures have warmed up into the 82 degree range on the Sea of Cortez side, but the Pacific is still slightly cooler.

Live bait options consisted of caballito and mullet, along with some chihuil and bolito which were being found and used for trolling on the offshore grounds.

East Cape

Conditions remained excellent for fishing – hot days with light midday breezes helping cool things down a bit. The most productive water was measured at 82 degrees with quite a variation in temps.

Jack Duval, from Houston, might be up for some kind of “Angler of the Year Iron Man” award. Duval fished on his own boat out of Leonero for seven straight days, focusing on billfish only. He boated (and tagged and released) 21 striped marlin, one sailfish and one blue marlin estimated to be in excess of 500 pounds. Jack worked the area about 10 miles off Cabo Pulmo.

But he was not the only one catching billfish. Other anglers cashed in on the local billfish blitz, primarily boating stripers.

The huge roosterfish bite continues to challenge anglers.

Anglers aiming for meat have been able to fill their coolers with smaller tuna. Fish are being picked off on the troll between the lighthouse and Pulmo. Hoochies and Cedar Plugs did the trick. Some bigger tuna were also snagged while slow-trolling for roosters. Always expect the unexpected around the lighthouse!

As for filling coolers and freezers, good-sized snapper were taken on the reefs including the odd monster dog tooth.

Fly fishers had numerous great opportunities on the good-sized roosters patrolling the beaches. Unless you want to kiss your line and backing adios, use a 12-weight outfit for these roosters; pick your spot and take a shot.

And we can’t forget about the Dorado Shoot Out! The biggest fish was a bruiser of 61.4 pounds, caught by Sean Feeney on the Don Julio, captained by Lucia Vargas. Second place came in at 57.3 pounds, caught by Harry Rogers on the El Regalo, captained by Arturo Silva. The third place fish was 52.5 pounds, caught by John Jenson on the Amante. Winners were caught between Punta Colorado and the lighthouse.

La Paz

Fisherman found wahoo every day on the high spots, along with jigging up some huachinango and pargo. There were lots of small dorado inshore and around the buoys, and several jumping and sleeper marlin were spotted as well. Anyone fishing La Paz/Las Arenas in the near future is going to score.

Cabo San Lucas

Tracy Ehrenberg www.piscessportfishing.com

Larry Edwards www.cortezcharters.com

San Jose del Cabo

Gordo Bank Pangas www.gordobanks.com

East Cape

Rancho Leonero Hotel www.rancholeonero.com

Jen Wren Sportfishing www.thejenwren.com

Cindy Kirkwood www.eastcapetackle.com

La Paz

Jonathan Roldan's Tailhunter International www.tailhunter-international.com