Fish Report

December 25, 2017 Edition
BY: GARY GRAHAM

Cabo San Lucas

The billfish catching has slowed down recently due to variable water temperature changes. Considerable cloudy conditions over the entire area plus windy conditions have caused a port closure day. The yellowfin tuna being caught were mostly in the 50 to 55 pound range in a couple of areas. They were caught using the drifting method along with weighted live bait.

fishkiller_4.JPGCabo Climate: Daytime temps averaged 78.1 degrees with nights at 66.1 degrees. The average humidity ratio has been at 69.1%. It has been mostly cloudy at Land's End.

Sea Temps: Sea temps from the Finger Bank and southerly to the upper end of the Golden Gate Bank were all at 76 to 77 degrees. The Golden Gate Bank, down across the Jaime Bank and out across the 1,000 Fathom Curve, are all at 77 to 79 degrees. San Cristobal and around to San Jose have been at 79.5 degrees, (including the Herradura, Cabo Falso, the 95 Fathom Spot, the 1150 Fathom Spot, as well as the Cabrillo Sea Mount). From the Gorda Banks to Los Frailes, temperatures were at 78.5 degrees.

Sea Conditions: Sea surface breezes flowing in mostly from the southwest direction averaged 6.1 mph. Overall, there have been no difficulties in traveling in any directions, although the port was closed for a day or two due to windy conditions.

Best Fishing Areas: There have been no regular hot spots for the billfish action, as billfish has been scattered about recently. Two of the billfish were caught and released in the Migrino area and the tuna were mostly a ‘time of day’ bite in the areas near Cabo Falso and on the bank close to the Gray Rock area, Cabeza de Ballena.

Best Bait/Lures: Live bait drifting was best for the yellowfin tuna and most of the dorado were taken on a mixture of artificials and rigged bait. The sierra were mostly taken on small shiny spoons and feathers in tight to the beaches.

Live Bait Supply: There was a good, live bait supply for caballito at the $3.00 per bait rate paid direct to the bait vendors at time of receipt.

Puerto Los Cabos

This is now late in the season for warmer water gamefish such as yellowfin tuna, dorado and wahoo, although the sea temps still remain in the 70s. The wahoo action has slowed way down, with only a handful of these fish being landed recently.

Dorado showed up in greater numbers. It’s still varying from day to day, although many anglers have been able to catch their two-fish limit. Most of these fish were in the 5 to 15 pound range with an occasional fish at 20 pounds. Remember to release juvenile female dorado whenever you have the opportunity; this is beneficial for the future fishery in order to maintain sustainable numbers.

Yellowfin tuna were one of the more common fish being caught on most days, though numbers were fewer. Tuna were being found off the Arches near Cabo, to Santa Maria, Palmilla, Punta Gorda, La Fortuna and Iman Bank.

Sardina were slightly harder to find in recent days, with Palmilla Point being the area where the schooling baitfish were being netted. These were definitely needed for a chance at catching the yellowfin, as very few were striking on squid strips or on trolled lures. Sizes of the tuna averaged 10 to 15 pounds, though a few larger ones up to 40 pounds were caught on the Iman Bank. Mixed in with the schools of yellowfin tuna were white skipjack. They were bit smaller than most of the tuna but good eating, not like the black skipjack which are normally only used for cut bait.

Some early sierra are coming from near shore grounds, though no big quantities yet. Also, there were handfuls of smaller roosterfish caught.

Bottom fishing produced a variety off the shallower rock piles, with wind being a factor farther to the north. Leopard grouper, pompano, island jack, bonito, yellow snapper, barred pargo and triggerfish were caught in limited numbers. Using sardina and chunk bait produced, but not many on lures at this time.

East Cape

Much to the windsurfers’ delight, the North Winds have already made their presence known.

Before the winds roared in, there were still a few billfish and yellowfin tuna along with a wahoo or two.

For the sportfishing gang, it’s the time of year to take one day at a time. There has been no wind in the morning.

There are still a few of the dink dorado to play with not too far offshore, along with a few keepers for the lucky ones.

Closer to shore, with weather permitting, the sierra are beginning to show. Just in time to provide ceviche, a Baja Christmas holiday favorite, coupled with fresh tortilla chips.

Winter has been settling in as air temps bounce between a low of 59 and high of 74 degrees, along with about the same 74 degree sea temperature.

La Paz

It’s a good time for snowbirds to enjoy some beach time or shopping or hanging out in a restaurant watching the ocean because it wasn’t the greatest time to be on the water. The strong winds that plagued firefighters in Southern California with Santa Ana ferocity blew down the Baja Peninsula and Sea of Cortez as well. Borders don’t stop winds! These winds had enough strength to kick up waves, chop and big swells, even in the normal calm waters inside La Paz Bay.

So, the window of opportunity for any fishing lately was limited to either hearty (crazy) souls who probably got beat up out there. However, there’s still fish out there.

Not much fishing north of town because the winds are from the north, so almost all the fishing is out of Muertos Bay/Las Arenas/Punta Perrico and Cerralvo Island where there’s some limited protection.

Some yellowfin tuna are still hanging out, but live bait is hard to come by. Dorado up to about 15 pounds are still in the area and there have also been some wahoo chasing the Rapalas closer to the island. Some of the wahoo ran 20 to 40 pounds or larger. The wind should be diminishing a bit according to the forecast. And town should start getting a bit more crowded as folks come in for the holidays.

 

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

East Cape Tackle Cindy Kirkwood, www.eastcapetackle.com

La Paz

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