Fish Report

December 10, 2018 Edition
BY: GARY GRAHAM

Numbers at a glance: Billfish 72%, tuna 7%, dorado 82%, other species 7%.

The Finger Banks are still producing marlin in the double digits, including a personal, record-breaking60 striped marlin and released on November 27 by32-foot Bill Collector owner Mark Chiavetta aboard. (He also caught and released two silky sharks landed a few).

However, the marlin aren’t just at the Finger Banks. There are strong marlin numbers closer to Cabo, from the Old Lighthouse to the Las Margaritas area. Double-digits of dorado have also been common with the boats in the area respecting the catch limits and releasing. Tuna are still around as well, although anglers have been targeting the other species.

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Fish Killer Of The Week

Manny Garrison poses with one of his ‘hoo. Two others got off. Photo by: Jonathan Roldan.

 

Cabo Climate: The good news is the forecast is for mostly sunny to partly cloudy skies with little rain. Winds are expected in the gentle 7 to 8 mph range. Humidity is expected to run in the mid-60s.

Sea Conditions: Seas have been calm in the mornings with some swells in the afternoons.Sea temps are running from 77- to 80 (Pacific side) to 79- to 81 around the inside corner to the Gordas. There are reports of a plume of warmer water running from the Golden Gate down to the San Jamie which has been productive.

Best Fishing Areas: Good counts of marlin are showing up around Cabo Falso, the Lighthouse and out to the San Jamie and Golden Gate Banks. Sailfish and striped marlin counts are good from the Lighthouse north along Migrino and quality dorado have moved north on the Pacific side along Migrino as well. The yellowfin tuna are being found 15 to 25 miles out from the Herradura west to the San Jamie Bank. The Finger Bank has been producing double-digit striped marlin counts with a few boats reporting over 20 fish per day.

Best Bait & Lures: Feathers and cedar plugs have been the favorite for the tuna and trolled smoke trail lures the favorite for the blue and black marlin. Live bait tossed to tailing stripers was also successful. Soaking live bait around the Finger Bank produced multiple striper counts.

Bait Supply: Live bait is available at $3.00 per bait upon exit from the harbor. With recent tournament action and an increase in seasonal traffic, live bait has become scarce at times.

Puerto Los Cabos

Though north winds have prevailed making for rougher conditions, ocean temperatures have been in the 77- to 79-degree range throughout most of the region. Caballito, ballyhoo and slabs of squid are the main bait available. Local fleets were fishing the grounds from Red Hill to Gordo Banks, Iman, San Luis and as far north as Vinorama. On these grounds the main species being found are yellowfin tuna, dorado or wahoo. Not much going on off the bottom besides triggerfish and a few early morning snapper and cabrilla.

Every day we hear of one or two larger-sized tuna being hooked, most taken off the Gordo Banks -- one yellowfin around 220 pounds, another 145-pounder and several other big fish lost. Slow-trolling larger bait or drift fishing strips of squid produced hook ups. Tuna, mostly in the 10 to 70 pound class, were found from Iman to Vinorama, but they were few and far between.

Dorado action was very good, especially off Red Hill area, but then it became more spread out. Trolling ballyhoo or caballito seemed the best bet for finding these schooling 20-pound dorado.

There are a lot of wahoo in the area but getting them to bite has been difficult. Many are striking while anglers are drifting with squid for tuna. They have not been striking trolled lures, but best chances seem to be on slow-trolled bait, such as caballito or chihuil.

With spear fishing season open, the divers are out in force. There are far more spear fishermen congregating on the same grounds with the rod and reel anglers which makes the fish much more spooky and elusive. Inshore areas are fragile and cannot sustain such pressure.

Along the shoreline there have been mostly smaller roosterfish and jack crevalle, but we have heard of an occasional larger rooster caught and released.amount to a handful of stripers being seen around the Iman and the Gordo Banks.

Cape

Here we are in December and it looks like summer will never end.Water temperature is still almost 80 degrees and there are as many calm days as windy. The game fish are still providing loads of action.

Striped marlin, sailfish, dorado and yellowfin tuna are on the prowl.Typically, this is not the season and conditions limit the ability for anglers to get off shore without rattling their teeth out.

Striped marlin and dorado reside here year ‘round, but it’s late for sailfish and tuna.I have never seen tuna in December; considering the bite started in March and has not stopped, this has been quite a streak!

La Paz

Wahoo showed up close to shore again in and near Bahia de los Muertos just south of La Paz.Manny Garrison caught two wahoo (see photo) and two others got off. Also caught some schoolie dorado as well.

It’s better fishing than we have had in a while. As is usually the case, weather has a lot to do with the fishing. With mostly sunny skies, the winter north winds gave us a break for the most part, allowing us to get out there and not make it just an exercise in staying dry and in the boat in the big waves -- but it also allowed us to get to some spots that are often difficult when it’s windy.

With daytime temps in the mid-80s and nighttime in the high-60s, it’s a pleasant time to be in La Paz and the influx of snowbirds is a sure indicator. But, as I’ve said in the past, they usually don’t fish or only fish a day so … there just aren’t that many folks fishing this time of year.

But we did get some folks out and the catches were rather surprising.

Out of Bahia Muertos, a good snap of 20 to 50 pound wahoo showed up just off the rocks with some nice fish hitting the box, but others getting lost.

There have been small bands of schoolie-dorado as well. Nothing spectacular, but great fun action with fish running 8- to 12-pounds with the occasional 20-pounder. A bit unusual given the cooler water temps.

Other days, there was decent action on bonito, big jack crevalle, pargo and cabrilla. A sure indicator of cooler conditions was the appearance of good bites of sierra that made for great eating and fun on light tackle. In fact, several days we had more sierra than I’ve seen in a long time.

The outlook shows some spikes of wind as the northerns return, but most of the wind won’t hit until later in the month.

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.