Baja Bytes – September 7, 2021
Baja in May is Good – Baja Bytes
Tijuana Bull Ring
To the south of Imperial Beach, boats are picking away primarily at short bass and short barracuda, and they are getting a sample of sand bass on the hard bottom at the IB Kelp and Pipe. Plastics with squid, along with sardine and anchovy, seem to be working…Fish Dope
Cold, dirty water is the story. However, we heard the water temperature has warmed back up to 65 or 66 degrees today, so there is hope fishing will turn on soon as well.
The yellows are still around. Captains say they are metering them, but they are not biting very well, if at all.
The sports boats with huge bait capacity allowing them to chum heavy are doing the best, scoring from around 10 to 25 yellows per day, far above the “per rod” average over the private boaters.
The issue here is that the water got cold and dirty, keeping the yellowtail from wanting to bite anything. So, although there are still a few being caught here and there, there are nowhere near what there were a week ago when the conditions were right and the guys were loading up.
We heard that most of the fish on the private boats were taken on slow-trolled sardine, with a few caught on Rapala and Nomad lures on the troll. The Middle Grounds has been an excellent choice lately, but there are fish around the weather side of North Island and scattered around South Island at the Ribbon Kelp, Lighthouse Kelp, and SKR. You might see some small bluefin popping up if you are fishing the areas below South Island.
Until things warm up and the water cleans up a bit, expect it to stay on the slow side. Hopefully, the fish stick here when that happens.
Rock fishing around the islands has been very good for quality reds and chuckleheads around 250 to 350 feet. Guys are loading up using sardine as well as jigs. Good options if the yellows don’t cooperate. …Fish Dope
Kids day! … SAMMY Susarrey Sportfishing Ensenada
Went to San Quintin for labor day weekend. There was the Vagabundos fishing tournament for biggest fish for 2 days. Dogman619, Leslie Christensen, captain Edy from Garcia’s panga & I entered. I came in 1st with 2 lings weighting a total of 29.5 lbs. Dogman came in 2nd & Les came in 3rd…noslow64
We made bait quickly, mostly mini macs; we downsized our hooks to 1/0 given the bait size, AND we started the day on the 240 High Spot. The yellowtail were on the chew showing a preference for the surface iron (mint) when we arrived, and the bite lasted throughout the morning. After catching plenty of yellowtail and filling out the kill bag with lingcod (it was pretty much a fish for every live mackerel dropped down), the wind came up, and we had to deal with the wind and some quick drifts. However, Christian Catian has excellent boat skills and kept us on top of the fish. We finished filling the kill bag with reds, whitefish, and sheepshead. …Sullyatty
Good fishing, but horrible catching on my last two sessions. My score in about eight hours of fishing: 13 yellowtail hookups with two making it into the boat. Not getting rocked, but just a crazy string of bad luck and a few user errors. The inshore water temperature has taken a 10-degree nosedive in the past four days, and the water is ugly, scummy, and pea soup green. Offshore, the temps hold at 76 to 78 degrees but are too windy for me to get to in the tin boat. I hope things improve over the next few days…Ross Zoerhof
Baja Sur-Que Pasa
The waters north of town are still choked with schools of peanut dorado. Our clients are happy with the 7 am start and back by 11am with fillets for dinner and the freezer. There must be a mobile fish production unit up by San Bruno because the dorado are mostly under 32 inches and there seems to be no end in sight!
It’s a weird year unlike any of the past 5 years. In the past it was not uncommon to strike into a dorado school after a few hours of searching. Looking for birds and weeds while dragging lures was the norm. Strike outs and last inning catches were expected . This season both the captains and the clients are happy with the quick and sure routine. Maybe if there were a few more billfish interruptions it would seem more like ocean adventures.
Hop in the boat, sardina in the bait tank and head north to Punta Colorado. It kinda reminds me of years ago when I would hop in my car, wallet in hand and fetch some Happy Meals for my three little dorado! 2021 in Baja and waiting to see if we can stretch this out until Christmas…Rick Hill, Pinchy Sportfishing
MEXICAN MINUTE LA PAZ FISHING REPORT from Tailhunter Sportfishing for Week of Aug 25-31, 2021
The ups and downs of late summer in Baja were very much in evidence this past week. Due to hurricane Nora, many of our guests with reservations were forced to cancel; but for the ones who made the trip, it was a great time fishing, catching and eating.
Despite the threatening weather, it was a very good week of fishing. With the water temps cooling off a few degrees, more fish were around for our anglers’ delight. It was a productive week for tuna, marlin, dorado, and roosterfish with bottom fishing off the charts! Sardines and ballyhoo again were the go-to bait for tuna and mahi. Billfish chased a variety of colorful lures along with ballyhoo, while our roosterfish were grabbing sardines…Axel Valdez, BUENA VISTA Oceanfront & Hot Springs Resort
Puerto Los Cabos
After an active summer season in the Eastern Pacific, the weather patterns have stabilized, and at present, we have no new storms threatening. Though the rest of this month is historically when Southern Baja can be most vulnerable to hurricane strikes, there are light crowds of tourists, which is typical for this final month of summer. There are scattered clouds and humid tropical conditions now, though we have begun to feel that slight cooling off as the first signs of fall season are just around the corner in the early mornings.
Recently, local sportfishing fleets have found the best all-around action from San Luis to Vinorama. Ocean water temperatures still range in the upper 80s, at peak, possibly the warmest levels for the year. As a result, schools of sardina shifted from where they had been for months near the Marina Jetty. However, anglers find these baitfish along the beaches from San Luis to Vinorama; caballito are more limited, and slabs of squid are the other main option.
Strong currents have been running, and anglers have mixed up the action with drift fishing and trolling. Yellowfin tuna have been the highlight, striking on sardina, strip bait, and some larger bait. Sizes averaged 30 to 50-pounds; at least two yellowfin were landed in the 130 to 170-pound range, and some larger fish are finally showing.
The overall bite was tough. Tons of black skipjack were found on the same grounds as yellowfin tuna breezing the surface but getting the tuna to strike instead of only the aggressive skipjack proved to be a challenge. Nevertheless, anglers were doing well to land a couple of these tuna. Though at least we saw the tuna regularly. They remain finicky as they see boat pressure on these same grounds every day from fleets as far as away as Los Barriles.
There were more dorado, from both directions, sizes to 20-pounds. There was also one 30-pound wahoo. Billfish action was slow, though striped marlin and sailfish were hooked and released in the same areas where boats targeted the tuna and dorado. Not many charters are explicitly looking to target the black or blue marlin. This is the time of year for the larger marlin, though also something that requires a lot of patience and is more of a “hit or miss” deal.
Not much inshore or bottom action now; actually, there are more triggerfish, bonito, and smaller pargo. Though there is still a fair chance of hooking into a giant dogtooth snapper while drift fishing for yellowfin, as these snappers hang on the same high spots this time of year. …Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas
Cabo San Lucas
After Hurricane Nora threatened the peninsula, it made a hard right turn into the Sea of Cortez and faded into obscurity as no more than a hard rainstorm.
It left Cabo San Lucas anglers to enjoy some of the best dorado fishing days this summer. While they respected catch limits and sizes, a few boats from the Pisces Fleet caught 135 dorado in two days, with 49 of those released.
Not only were dorado plentiful, but there were also a few large bulls in the 40 to 50-pound class as well. In addition, anglers released a handful of striped marlin.
The cow-sized yellowfin tuna were in the count. The charter fleet and private boats found some smaller yellowfin tuna a bit farther offshore, leading into September, which shaped up to be a hot month for fishing.
LOCATION: The best fishing locations have been 36 miles, 130 degrees, 40 miles south, 30 miles 150, 32 miles to 130, outside Horseshoe.
WEATHER CONDITIONS: The sea temps have been from 81 to 86 degrees, clear and calm with two to three-foot swells and light breezes in the afternoons. The air temps have been from 74 to 86 degrees.
BEST LURES: The best bait or lures were alive or dead caballito, mackerel, ballyhoo, sardina, and various large pushers in multiple colors, along with cedar plugs, plastic squid, and Rapala-style lures…Pisces Sportfishing Fleet
That Baja Guy-Gary Graham