Baja Bytes – June 22, 2021
Tijuana Bull Ring
Bird schools continue to be the best bet outside the kelp. There has not been any word on yellowtail, but they did pop up under birds a few times last week.
Inshore, calico bass have remained a consistent bite. Small plastics and anchovies on light lines have been the best bait but sardines are getting bit as well. They are biting straight through the day into the twilight hours – the afternoon bite has been the best on some days, mornings on other days.
Also showing under the birds are big bonito and barracuda and they are feeding on the anchovy schools. The barracuda have been scattered from along the kelp line in front of the Bull Ring while the bonito are being found from 3- to 4-miles out towards North Island.
The majority of these bird schools are on mackerel, but if you keep checking them out, you’re bound to come across one holding game fish. …Fish Dope
What we last heard was that there were barracuda spread out all over South Island with SKR and Ribbon Kelp seeing the most under schools of birds and mixed in with the barracuda was a few yellowtail. Slow trolling sardines might be the best choice right now as the sea lion issue is bad if you anchor up in any one spot.
Good bass fishing here too, mainly in the kelp but some also happening on the boiler rocks in the Middle Islands area. …Fish Dope
Coronado Canyon / 226-302 / 230 / 371 / 425 / 475 Knuckle / Above 32 00
The big mass of bluefin have set up shop here and they don’t seem to be moving with the fleet again. After getting into some great fishing today with most of the catch coming in on 20- to over 60-pound bluefin on flylined sardines. The best signs seemed to be just a few miles south of where they were yesterday, still between the Upper Hidden and the 371. We heard a few different sports boats describe it as “good as it gets” for local bluefin fishing based on the volume they are seeing. However, that’s not to say it’s wide-open fishing. It sounded like a lot of private boaters spent their mornings metering plenty of fish, but not getting much play from them on the fly line, sinker rigs, and jigs. The sport boats have the chumming capacity to get the reaction from these fish despite the extremely high boat traffic in this area. Most private boats don’t have that capacity. There were a a few reports of guys getting a good response from chumming chunked sardine yesterday, which wouldn’t be a bad idea to get an extra half scoop or full scoop in a bucket to use as chum if you have limited capacity in your bait tank.
There are good signs of fish out below the 425 and to the southeast of it a few miles and there are certainly fewer boats. One report that there were foamers all over the place yesterday in this zone with no boats around and they had wide-open fishing by casting surface jigs into the fish pushing 60 pounds.
The bluefin are all mixed up in size, but for the past two days, the vast majority of the fish have been in the 20- to 60-pound range. There are still fish pushing 100-pounds around but not as many as we had seen earlier in the week. The big ones that are being caught are mostly coming at night on the jigs and sinker rigs and then during the day it’s mostly fly-lined bait and sinker rigs on the 20- to 60-pound stuff. It sounded like a lot of the fish in the past two days were caught on 30-pound fly line which is still a risky game to play with big fish but it’s been necessary to get bites. …Fish Dope
There was some secondhand dope regarding the panga fleet seeing signs of big bluefin off Ensenada yesterday. There are reports of lots of puddlers and jumpers and some spots of big foamers, and although there are no specifics on the location, these fish are most likely within 15- to 20-miles off Todos Santos due to their limited range. Somewhere between the 475 Knuckle and Banda Bank would be a likely area for them to be fishing.
No firsthand reports, but secondhand reports for the second day with the big volume of fish to the north.
On Thursday, it was similar fishing to the section above, just farther south.
There was one exception here: there is a small number of 30- to 40-pound yellowfin beginning to filter in mixed with the bluefin.
Ensenada pangas have been reporting a few of these tuna for a couple of weeks and now the Polaris Supreme caught one too. …Fish Dope
Well, there is always ling cod…Garcia’s Pangas
Headed out with the boat this morning in sort of squirrely conditions – cold water, thick marine layer, and a choppy wind chop. We hit a few spots looking for some early-season yellows with no luck and then went fishing for calico bass at Isla San Roque. I had a nice pick on the colored-up checkers. I released about 15 of them before I remembered that someone had requested some calicos for the family. I couldn’t remember who, but I started to keep a few, knowing I could find a home for them. Few people talk about the bass fishery in this area, but it truly is the best I’ve ever seen. And yes, I’ve been to Cedros Island! …Ross Zoerhof
Jeff just ran our first group down at Cedros Island Fishing Charters/Cedros Kayak Fishing
GREAT fishing with the crew from Hook Up Baits for yellowtail, calico bass, white fish, sheepshead & even some Bonita & barracuda. Average for each day was 400 fish days. Katie Schmidt, Cedros Island Fishing Charters
Bahia de Los Angeles
Did the trip with my girlfriend, but I managed to fish for a couple of days. Great drive down via the 5; I’m done with traveling the 1.
Conditions were good, so I did the long paddle across the channel to kayak fish the north end of Smith. Scored a couple of small yellowtail that were fun to catch on the kayak. Satisfying to make plans and then execute them.
A big thanks to Cosmo Goss on this board for finding a spot for me on Joel, Jr’s boat. Wide-open for YT, with dozens caught and released after the cooler was full. We also caught a couple of cabrilla and a red snapper.
It was a great drive home on Friday. Got to the Mexicali east crossing at 1:15 pm before the 2 pm closing. There was a short line, took 15 minutes to cross via the non-SENTRI lane.
Thanks for all the recent reports from everyone, hope to get down there again soon…Joe
Baja Sur-Que Pasa
Hi Gary, We just got off the water. Nineteen boats entered. Slow day, however, enough fish were caught in the rough water to have a winner. And enough were brought in for the fish taco dinner!
The winner on Awards’ night on Sunday is a secret till Sunday at 5 pm. We will update you tomorrow evening. Craig and Theresa Cove. P. . As tournament control, we did not compete. We were on scene, offshore.
Punta Chivato Bulls only. Tournament
The event was a great success! Craig Cove
We got some cranky south winds this week that is a sure sign of the summer season. It’s too early to tell if the wind pushed warmer waters from Cabo into our area. The as of yet unknown issue with the south wind would be if hoards of dorado and billfish came along for the ride or if the dorado we have been pecking at locally have been pushed up the coast to Punta Chivato!
Our scuba divers confirm the disruption of the water temperatures. Still “comfortable at the surface but 60-degrees COLD at 40 feet”.
Dorado that are closest to town are just north of Coronado Island. Also, Coronado is a hotspot for roosterfish along the coastline. Outside of Carmen Island’s Punta Lobo dorado are hanging at the same sargasso patches (or their latest updated versions).
Down south the fishing continues to whack at cabrilla and yellowtail at the 6 Mile high spot and south along the rock wall.
Dorado have yet to move in close to the “Danzante triangle”. The southern boats wanting dodo action have a long haul to find gold.
For the poor folks that are stuck fishing down south don’t cry about the golden jumpers. Roosterfish are thick and ready to bust your spirits and stretch a few muscles all along the coastline.
Sardina have been the most popular bait and I think a small part of the popularity is you have to have some daylight in order to put them in your bait tank. (no need to wake up at 4am to catch mackerel – that makes me happy!)
Just about everything in the waters around Baja loves sardina for lunch…Rick Hill, Pinchy Sportfishing
La Paz\Muertos Bay
MEXICAN MINUTE LA PAZ FISHING REPORT from Tailhunter Sportfishing for Week of June 8-15, 2021
East Cape – June 20, 2021
Water has been very flat, clear, and warm in the 82- to 83-degree range.
The air has been warming, with cool mornings, hot midday, and cooling afternoon breezes.
Another week of stellar fishing! Six straight weeks of nonstop wide-open yellowfin bites. All anglers targeting are limiting every day! The striped marlin fishing is particularly good with most anglers targeting marlin releasing multiples. The big roosterfish are back into lots of 50 plus pounders inshore with light pressure. Big pompano nice pargo and grouper are coming to the cleaning table daily. Lots of big sardina are available.
Multiple pods of porpoise are holding yellowfin tuna from 7- to 40-miles offshore. Limits for all anglers. Fish from 5- to 60-pounds. Because the pods are so spread out and numerous, there are not many boats on them. The fish are staying up and biting everything thrown at them. GREAT tuna fishing for the past six weeks!
Lots of Stripers mixed with a few sails. Close inside from 3- to 7-miles offshore on the drop-offs off La Ribera. Multiple releases. Not a lot of pressure as most anglers are going for the tuna. The best bait by far? Slow-trolled ballyhoo.
Loads of big roosters were back along the beaches this week. Fish over 50-pounds were common. They were taking sardina, and quite a few were released on flies.
Bottom fish: The African and gaff tail pompano are still biting aggressively on the sardina. They are mixed in with some nice pargo and grouper. And drift fishing sardina seems to be the best method. .…John Ireland. Rancho Leonero
Puerto Los Cabos
Bait netters are finding sardina, caballito, and mullet are all near the marina area now. They are also offering slabs of squid and ballyhoo, so bait has remained plentiful. The majority of local sportfishing charters are fishing on the grounds from Cardon, La Fortuna, Iman, San Luis, and north to Vinorama, with offshore billfish action continuing to be found near the 1150 or 95 Spots. Striped marlin were spread out, and were also found within a few miles of shore, depending on currents on a particular day, also a couple of sailfish were caught, as well a small-sized blue marlin; and mid-week there was a swordfish brought in by a trip of commercial pangeros, smaller-sized, about 130 pounds, but impressive anyway. Yellowfin tuna action was hit or miss, continually fluctuating water conditions making the action sporadic. Best chances in recent days have been north near Vinorama, close to shore, in 100 to 200 feet of water. It has been an early bite on sardina or striped squid, a smaller grade of fish from 12 to 25 pounds, though earlier in the week, other schools of tuna encountered had yellowfin to 30 to 70-pounds.
Dorado were even less numerous than were the tuna. Some days we are seeing a few dorado up to 20 pounds, but other days we are not seeing them at all. Once conditions stabilize more, we will be seeing more schooling dorado on local grounds. Not much at all going on with wahoo either. Early in the week, there were reports of wahoo free swimming and a couple of hookups, but as the week progressed nothing more.
The most consistent fishery now continues to be concentrating on the bottom rocky structure, from as shallow as 50 feet to depths of 200 feet. A wide variety of species are being landed, while anglers are using yo-yo style jigs and bait, mainly sardina. A few impressive almaco jack to over 50 pounds, leopard grouper to 20 pounds, yellow snapper, red snapper, rose snapper, pompano, bonito, barred pargo, triggerfish, island jack, and even had a batch of blackfin jack, which are not a very common local catch. All of these fish are excellent eating, including the local Mexican Bonito, which is unlike its California relative.
Along the shoreline, there are more hog-sized jack crevalle than there are roosterfish, as roosters are running a bit later than usual this season. We are still seeing some quality-sized sierra along the shore, though not as many now as the water is warming, and the sierra will eventually move out. Shore anglers have had some impressive catches recently, including snook to over 40 pounds, and tripletail. Anglers know that this is the peak season for better shore action. Good Fishing, Eric. …Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas
Cabo San Lucas
Fillets for days!! Captain Juan, Mate Esteban, and some of our luckiest anglers (always), John Williams aboard Pisces 32’ Bill Collector landed this 172-pound yellowfin.
I had just talked to Juan on the dock the day before about when the big ones would show up, “Any day now” he said, “let’s see if it’s tomorrow!” Juan always knows where to find ‘em, consistently landing big YFT early in the season; this time they landed the first one over 100-pounds for the year so far. Caught with a cedar plug on a 30# set up, it took John about an hour and a half to land it.
But that’s not all, they caught four yellowfin and released three striped marlin…Pisces Sportfishing.
LOCATION: The best locations have been Arriba de la Herradura, the 1150 Spot, Chileno, and Abajo Punta Gordo.
WEATHER CONDITIONS: The sea temps have been from 75- to 78-degrees, clear and calm, with 2 to 3-foot swells and with light winds in the afternoon. The afternoon air temps have been 74- to 82-degrees.
BEST LURES: The best bait or lures were alive or dead caballito, mackerel, ballyhoo, sardina, and a variety of large, brightly-colored pushers, and Rapala-style lures, as well as Hoochies.
That Baja Guy-Gary Graham