Big Dorado are back

Baja Bytes Fishing – Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Que Pasa Baja California

Non-essential travel extended to Oct. 21

The Mexico Secretary of Foreign Affairs announced on Thursday that the border shared with the United States will remain closed for another month to further prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The border closure was initially due to expire on Sept. 21.

The Mexican spokesperson said that the two countries would continue the terms of that closure, which have been in place since March until at least Oct. 21.
More info

Tijuana Bull Ring

Short bass and bonito are showing well in the upper La Jolla area. You can’t miss the area as there are a ton of skiffs and kayaks on it.
Trolling for bonito, away from the crowds, is working well and red/white, blue/white, black/purple, green/yellow are all great color choices.
There are plenty of bonito in the south from outside Hill Street to the Whistler, as well… Fish Dope

Coronado Islands / Rockpile

Got to the North Island around 7:30 a.m.
The water was green and there was only 30-feet of visibility. The four “spearos” spent two hours on the lee side of Pukey Point but they saw no yellowtail or bonito. They then moved to the Keyhole where it was the same visibility. There was one school of 100 five-pound bonito. They shot two and one got away. That was it. The water temp was 65 to 66 degrees… Fish Dope

226-302 / Coronado Canyon / 371 / 425 / 390

This location is still the best by far to find and score “local” yellowfin.
Yellowfin tuna are the primary catch in this zone now, although there is a sampling of bluefin, skipjack, dorado, and yellowtail around as well. It is still hit or miss but some big hits are happening.
TROLL feathers and plugs! Most of the yellowfin are coming off jig stops and sonar schools. The kelps have been mostly dry lately with maybe a dorado or two and some mini-yellows on them if you are lucky. We say “mostly” but it seems somebody finds kelp just about every day that is loaded with yellows and dorado but again most are dry or just have a handful of fish on them.
The yellowfin for the most part are in the 8- to 12-pound class but there are a few bigger units in the 20- to nearly 50-pound class too. It depends on the school.
The dorado are running from four to about 12- to 15-pounds and most of the yellowtail are running 2- to 4-pounds with maybe around 5% in the 8- to 15-pound class.
The skipjack are running from 8-12-pounds.
The small number of bluefin are mostly in the 20-pound class but there are some bigger units around. Just no volume of these tuna.
In general, it appears the best two zones are in the lower part of the Canyon below the 302 and just above the 371, as well as the 425 including the area near the 425 in the vicinity of where the tuna pens are located.

The 425 area is still holding good numbers of dorado, plus some yellowfin and small yellowtail on kelps near the tuna pens but with the weekend crowds, the bite has been tough.

A lot of the dorado are fairly small, from 3- to 5-pounds, but there are a few bigger ones in the 10- to 12-pound range in the mix. Some of the kelps are also holding 2- to 12-pound yellowtail.

There have also been enough open-water schools of dorado (and some yellowfin) that we highly recommend you troll while paddy hunting. Cedar plugs, feathers, daisy chains, and jet heads are all working fine. Zucchini, pink, green/yellow, black/purple, and blue/white are good choices for your feathers.

Dorado also love bigger, brightly-colored marlin lures – and so do marlin – which you also might find around. The good fishing continues although the SE wind has made it uncomfortable. By far most of the kelp paddy yellowtail, dorado, and yellowfin are coming from this zone – not just on kelps either, as they are in open-water schools too…Fish Dope

421 / 390 / Upper Cross

A few boats ventured out this way today and they found a few schools of willing yellowfin. The kelps had some signs of dorado and small yellowtail.Fish Dope.



Another successful inshore day at Maras Sportfishing

West of Ensenada / Upper 500 / 238

This zone is turning back on after a few weeks of slow fishing. Some kelps are loaded with dorado. Some have a few yellowtail and/or yellowfin on them too. Overall the boats that ran down here saw very good fishing.Fish Dope.

San Quintin

Wow! What a great day of “catching” with Cap’n Juan Cook. There are a good number of awesome captains here in San Quintin but if you have a chance book a day with him. He never disappoints!

On the boat by 6:15 a.m. and headed out into the bay to make bait. After loading up with awesome sardine, it was a rough ass, victory-at-sea, ride out. I mean rough! From 4’ to 6′ swells at eight seconds or sooner interval. We got out to the grounds and all we could manage were 10 or so good-sized bonito. They are fun to catch but I don’t like to eat them so … Juan decided to try for some reds and lings. That was a great call!  We all hooked up and landed a lot of quality-sized fish. We called it a day around 2 p.m. and headed in.

Reed Jackson, Richard Parzonko, and I were all exhausted! It was time for some drinks and dinner. Damn, I love Baja! Christina Campbell

Bahía Asunción


It was my daughter Sirena’s turn to haul in (& lose) some yellowtail…Shari Bondy

Nice haul of yellowtail in Bahia Asunción. Our guest and Rossman enjoyed the day with Capt. Juan Arce Marrón and Domingo all doing what they love…bending rods! Great day on the pond…Shari Bondy

Bahía de Los Ángeles


Fishermen from the Bahía de Los Ángeles Municipality of Ensenada delegation are concerned and upset at the illegal and illegal overfishing of the San Felipe fishermen.


During May of this year, fellow fishermen from the San Felipe delegation arrived at our delegation. They were in need of providing for their families and extended their fishing to our seas. That was not a problem because as brothers of the sea we are here to support each other. The problem arose from the attitude they had when they arrived.

They began to loot our seas, fishing for EXTINCT SPECIES and also OUT OF SEASON SPECIES such as totoaba, cucumber, turtle, octopus, and lobster, thereby carrying out acts of ILLEGAL AND FURTIVE FISHING as established by the legal fishing regulations in Mexico; when they launched their nets they took all kinds of marine species, thus affecting the flora and fauna.

The second illegal act was that Bahia de Los Angeles fishermen condemned the foreign fishermen for bringing firearms and using narcotics, thus causing the local fishermen and population to fear so that they would not fish where the San Felipe delegation was looting marine products. The foreign delegation also used strategies that broke the nets of the local fishermen to prevent them from working and so that they could not obstruct their illegal acts.

A third problem is that the fishermen of San Felipe rented houses and apartments in the town of Bahia, creating a social problem with their high volume of music late at night, their drinking of too much alcohol, their use of drugs, and the fact that they were armed. Thus, they generated fear among the settlers, keeping them intimidated; also, our young people were being harmed by inciting vice.

Therefore, the presence of the corresponding authorities is being requested and required from CONAPESCA, GUARDIA COSTERA DE LA MARINA, GUARDIA NACIONAL, SEMAR, PROFEPA, SAGARPA, SEMARNAT, GENERAL LAW OF SUSTAINABLE FISHING AND AQUACULTURE, among others.

Without a doubt, deep cooperation, coordination and responsibility are required on the part of these government institutions to help control this problem and to take care of the oceans and those who live on them in an ethical, honorable and legal way.”

Punta Chivato

Photo Craig Cove

Rick Rhodes caught his first snook at the launch ramp off his kayak.

Baja Sur-Que Pasa Losing a Baja Legend:

Don Johnson owner of Hotel Serenidad in Mulegé

Don Johnson, co-owner of Hotel Serenidad in Mulegé since 1968, died at age 94 on September 15, 2020. A true Baja legend, his name is synonymous with Hotel Serenidad where his hospitality welcomed everyone from the Hollywood elite to Baja road trippers for more than five decades.

Johnson was a true ambassador for Baja, and he will be missed.  More


First Golden Fishing Tournament was Successfully Held – “THE NEW NORMALITY IN LORETO”

· The winner was Frank Armenta of the Dolche or Dolce Vite team, with a gold of 15.8 pounds, becoming credited to a bag in more than 40 thousand pesos.

· 44 teams participated in the search for heavier gold, under an organization strictly attached to the protocols issued by COEPRIS

Official newsletter:

With the participation of 44 teams and with strict adherence to the protocols issued by the State Commission for the Protection of Health Risks (COEPRIS), this Saturday, September 19th was held in the municipality of Loreto, the First Golden Fishing Tournament of the New Normal, with which the Hunting, Shooting and Fishing Club of the Santo Domingo Valley celebrated 28 years of organizing this type of events.

The Secretary of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Agricultural Development (SEPADA), Andrés Córdova Urrutia, led the exit shot in the dock of the Loretan boardwalk, in which he made public recognition to the organizing committee for punctually seizing protective measures to prevent contagion by COVID-19.

In this sense, he emphasized that the registrations were carried out via the Internet, avoiding the development of convivios (social gatherings) and holding the closing ceremony so as not to generate crowds. Similarly, the organizing committee recognized the importance to the participants of maintaining the maximum capacity of three fishermen per boat, keeping a healthy distance, in addition to the constant cleaning of hands.

Accompanied by the Municipal Director of Tourism, Felipe de Jesús Silva, and the representative of the State Government in this municipality, Alvaro Murillo, Córdova Urrutia understood the value and the importance of sport fishing tournaments being reactivated; in addition to benefiting service providers, it also generates economic spills in the hotel sector, restaurant, self-service shops, fuel stations, and hardware stores, among others.

Finally, it was reported that this first edition of the New Normal Golden Fishing Tournament, was won by Frank Armenta, of the Dolche Vite team, with a dorado of 15.8 pounds, which earned more than 40 thousand pesos… Gonzalo Alamea Camacho

All the boats are reporting the same story regarding the summer of 2020 in Baja.  Baitfish are everywhere and small dorado are in between the schools. Roosterfish have been found on the south tip of Carmen Island and the west side of Danzante.

Trips returning from north of Loreto are bringing back cabrilla and snapper in the 5-pound range. Sardina and hard bait are working for this bunch along the coast. The high spot at San Bruno has been good for red and yellow snapper plus a few yellowtail just under 20 pounds.

No big changes to report. The marina parking lots have been full; the beaches remain closed. Hotels and restaurants are open and conforming to the 40% rules. The days are still hot but getting noticeably shorter.

Autumn and the holidays are just around the corner. It will be interesting to see how long the little dorado will stick around and how soon they change into big dorado…Rick Hill, Pinchy Sportfishing

La Paz

MEXICAN MINUTE LA PAZ FISHING REPORT from Tailhunter Sportfishing for Week of Sept. 10-17, 2020

East Cape

East Cape   Van wormer YFT

Nice tuna on the way to the Bay View Restaurant at Palmas de Cortez. Angler Carlos Van Wormer aboard the MARLINTINI with Captain Chicho and deckhand Adan Tamayo!! Buen trabajo…Annibal Miranda

It was nice to get out of the smoke with a trip back to the East Cape.
United flight from SFO, ~30% full, plenty of room.
Playa del Sol was near empty, with the daily census ranging from 9 to 14.
I fished the 14th and 15th with Abraham/Paco on the Mako, then the last day with Paco/Pancho on the Thresher. Both boats were set up sweet, and they are both nice guys to fish with.
Fortunately, there were a lot of porpoise, and most had tuna. Depending on the school, sizes ranged from 10- to 25-pounds. I did get one ~ 45 pounds and one ~ 70 pounds. Rude Boy 2 got a 200-pound tuna on the 16th.
What made the tuna fun, was catching nearly all of them (and from 1 to 3 white bonito each day) while working a hoochie. Initially, Abraham did not think they would work because ” hoochies haven’t caught tuna in weeks!” MMA

This is the 8th Annual Van Wormer Resort Tuna Shoot Out.  Registration in the East Cape will be on Friday, October 23rd at hotel Palmas De Cortez from 4 p.m. -8 p.m. in the conference room.

The tournament format will be the same as the Dorado Shoot Out except this time it’s the biggest yellowfin tuna that will win. The largest tuna caught on October 24, 2020, will win approximately $35,000 (based on 100 teams entering).  This is a one-day tournament, so anyone can win.  If you are entered in the tournament and you catch the heaviest yellowfin tuna on October 24, 2020, you will walk away with the cash.  There will be over $100,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs including great raffle prizes, return trips including fishing, and much more. The entry fee is only $500 per team and includes dinner at the awards ceremony. Terrific prizes for the top three teams that catch the largest tuna. Optional Cash Jackpots of $300, $500, $1,000, and $2,000 jackpots with an 85% return rate.

Puerto Los Cabos

The main bait being offered are sardina and slabs of squid. This is what the better action has been on. Yellowfin tuna has been the most common gamefish being targeted, and the tuna have been found from the Gordo Banks, north to Vinorama, with the Iman Bank being one of the more popular areas. Boats from the north, East Cape, are arriving on these same grounds, adding to the concentrated pressure. The early bite was particularly good for yellowfin, which were in the 10- to 80-pound range with the average fish from 40- to 60-pounds. Although larger cow-sized tuna was seen, they proved to be finicky, quickly disappearing, though they are still in the area, and with these calm conditions, the ocean is becoming riper for wide-open action to break loose. Boats are averaging one or two tuna, or sometimes up to five or six, depending on exactly where you happened to be.

Not as many dorado or wahoo are being found, though they are in the area and some were accounted for; most of the dorado were small fish and anglers have not reported seeing any large bulls recently.  The few wahoo seen were in the 20- to 35-pound class. Minimal bottom action for mixed species – a few quality fish – Almaco jacks to 45 pounds and one 65-pound dogtooth snapper, barred pargo, bonito, pargo colorado, and one black sea bass by local commercial pangeros weighing about 70-pounds.

Last weekend, there were a handful of black marlin hooked into, most from the vicinity of the Gordo Banks, and while trolling skipjack or bolito bait. At least three blacks were landed and brought in.  They ranged in sizes from 340 pounds to close to 500 pounds. Several sailfish and striped marlin also were reported.… Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas

Cabo San Lucas


Recently, fishing has been closer to our typical summer season, with some inconsistencies. The water temperature has changed (with temps on the Sea of Cortez reported of up to 88 Degrees F) and the fish are moving quickly. However, lately, the dorado picked up with almost 30% of the boats landing them, compared to only 5% last week.

This helped pick up success rates and catches for anglers. Tuna numbers dropped slightly, but probably because the dorado showed up and were easier targets than heading out far for tuna. A few more billfish were taken as well, although not in large numbers. However, blue marlin catches have steadily risen, with an outstanding catch and release of an approximate 600-pounder on Pisces 37-foot Reel Cast. That same day the guys also landed two yellowfin and lost another two blues! All in all, this weekend was one of our most impressively productive fishing days of the year so far. Just on Saturday for example, we had 81 fish caught (catch limits were respected with releases; all billfish were released). 

LOCATION: San Jaime, Los Arcos, Migrino, Punta Gorda, and Golden Gate.

WEATHER CONDITIONS:  Sunny, and hot days mostly; partially cloudy on others. Calm water overall, no swell.

AVERAGE WATER TEMP: 82 to 87 Degrees F.

BEST LURES: Caballito bait, cedar plugs, feathers, guacamayo lures, hoochis, Rapala…Rebecca Ehrenberg, Pisces Sportfishing

That Baja Guy-Gary Graham


Cellular (760) 522 3710

Published by That Baja Guy - Gary Graham

That Baja Guy...Gary Graham Gary Graham turned his passion for all things fishing into a profession. Whether its boats, destination travel, adventure experiences, vehicles, tackle, methods or just the spinning of a good outdoors tale, Graham has evolved into the go-to guy.

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