A Baja Merry Christmas

Baja Bytes –December 21, 2021     

Que Pasa

The Reason for the Season

I was fortunate enough today to join the Second Annual Buena Vista Drive. It’s a food and gift drive, and we get to deliver the goodies to remote families – I hope it’s as much fun for them as it is for us.

I often wonder, even worry, about my impact here and my cultural assimilation. (Please, rest of the world, do not aspire to become the U.S.!) Children provided plenty of looks of confusion, even fear, as this terrestrial regatta of funnily attired gringos invaded their remote homesteads! Jaja!

But – then came the smiles.

Piñata, futbol, marbles, the mystery of a hula-hoop, the shared joy of sinking the first “corn-hole” shot – it doesn’t all make sense; it doesn’t need to. The children themselves ensured that the candy and coins were equally divided, as did their parents and neighbors with the foodstuffs.

THAT made sense.

THAT is the lesson!

I’m not certain that I can or even want to save or change the world.

But the kindness and understanding I witnessed today gave me joy and hope.

Happy Holidays, everyone. – J David LeCompte

BAJA (Norte)

Bahia de Los Angeles

It looks like Wednesday will be a good day for the 20-mile crossing to Isla Angel de la Guarda … 30 miles to where I want to be. We’ve been waiting for over a week for the wind to ease. Nothing certain. It is all part of the tension and adventure – in the hands of the “wind gods.”

On the boat ride over, I decided to leave my hand-pump desalinator behind. So instead, I will be taking 20-gallons of water. That seems more than adequate this time of year, along with another five gallons of fluids. Reckon I can stretch that to at least 30-days’ supply if the wind delays my return.

The desalinator could have made a gallon of drinking water an hour, and I will feel a little naked without it. But it has its limitations. Stormy seas can make it unusable. It needs to be out on the water or bringing clean seawater ashore.

I will have my solar battery chargers and power cells to charge my SPOT satellite device, marine VHF radio, iPhone (for voice-memo function, no phone signal), and cameras.

I am so grateful to Mike and Cindy Essary for letting me prepare and shelter in their lovely beach home a mile south of town in LA Bay. Mike has been a fantastic friend, driving my kayak down to Bahia Gonzaga to begin my paddle to La Paz. And even flying over Guardian Angel Island, surprise parachuting me a keg of Heineken and bags of chocolate treats!

The last five or six of my eBooks would likely never have happened without Casa Essary as a base. Hug’s amigos! Indeed, I’d never have found and rescued Paddy.

When I was on the island last Christmas, I explored a canyon when I heard a rock crashing down from above. I froze! And before I had time to think, “Who will look after my bears?” the rock landed a yard in front of me.

Kimberly Goff, mum of Billy, generously answered the call – offering to give them a loving home together if necessary.

I have been so lucky with the people I have met in Baja, California, for forty years. Kindness, generosity, and friendship have followed me on all my adventures.

And here’s a recent photograph of the adventurers – just in case aliens abduct us – or overwise we disappear! …Graham Mackintosh is with Mike Essary and Kimberly Goff.

Dr. Carlo and his son Olin are fishing with Captain Juan in LA Bay. They caught the fish on a mint Deadhead lure…


Great fishing in between storms with Alejandra Abaroa, Lisbia Ojeda, José Luis Sánchez and Victor Mendez, IGFA Representative for Baja.

Bahía de la Ascensión    

My favorite Captain …Shari Bondy

Coronado Islands
Cranky weather continues. …Fish Dope

Que Pasa    Baja Sur  

Bucket List trip to Magdalena Bay @ Lopez MateosMark Rayor     

I had the pleasure of fishing with Rubin Duran on his 21-foot Mako, “Sofia,” for three days last week out of Lopez Mateos.  Unfortunately, the forecast called for strong winds in the Pacific, so we elected to stay inside the estuary, which is more protected from the elements, rather than going offshore.  

Each morning, motoring a short distance from the launch ramp, we spotted pelicans feeding on Monetary sardines.  Rubin only had to toss his cast net once each day to make all the bait needed to fill the well.

My last couple of trips to Lopez fishing had been tough, and we had worked hard to scratch out a few fish.  However, this time, the stars were aligned, and it was action-packed the entire time on the water.  I not only caught my bucket list snook but landed a limit of snook each day along with a limit of corvina and several grouper.  Unfortunately, we were done by 12:30 in the afternoon on our third day.  I hated for the trip to end and am looking forward to returning.


The streets and stores of Loreto are chocked full of local shoppers and snowbirds in full swing for Christmas. Last week the fishing scene was cut by half with the days too windy to be fun for fishing; this week looks entirely cut by the holidays.Picking your way through the whitecaps of last week has shifted to a more dangerous game of picking your way in and out of store parking lots this week!

Happy Holidays!

Photo Don Busse

The fishing continues to be productive. The commercial guys are hand-lining snapper, pinto bass, whitefish, and an occasional yellowtail. The hardcore yellowtail crew is doing well at San Bruno Reef, landing yellows in the 15-pound range. The tourist-type fishing scene continues to be good along the coast for roosters, sierra, and an odd dorado or two.

Serious fishing will be starting mid-January, as the wind and hangovers allow.

There are tons of yellowtail at Pulpito and Almeja Bay, and when the wind is low, that’s where we will go! (Some 30-pound yellowtail will make 2022 a Happy New Year!). …Rick Hill, Pinchy Sportfishing    

Magdalena Bay

Surprised my dad with his first trip to Mag Bay! Thank you Jimmy Camacho for making it happen….Connie Unmacht

La Paz    

MEXICAN MINUTE LA PAZ FISHING REPORT from Tailhunter Sportfishing for Dec. 6-18, 2021

East Cape      

We found three nice ones the other day. A morning to remember!…Elskel


Puerto Los Cabos   

Well folks another Wahoo Rumble is in the books, we had 54 anglers on the trip Nov. 7 to 11, 2021 fishing 3 days on 21 boats. Once again we stayed at the beautiful beachfront hotel the Barcelo Gran Faro an all-inclusive hotel located on the beach in San Jose del Cabo where all our food and drinks were included.

A big thank you to Eric Brictson of Gordo Banks Pangas who once again did a great job of organizing all our boats for the tournament and was the tournament weight master. We had a couple of boats that had mechanical problems and Eric had to hustle to find replacement boats. Great job Eric!

Fishing this year was very difficult as green water moved into the normally productive banks of the Iman, Vinorama and San Luis, the Tuna were not to be found. Normally this time of year is excellent tuna fishing on these banks and not one tuna was caught by our anglers nor by other anglers fishing out of Puerto Los Cabos Marina. The Dorado bite was okay but was small size up to 15 pounds. The Wahoo bite was extremely slow with only three caught. Even though the fishing was slow our anglers were upbeat and being anglers know that there are good and bad days!

Now for the results of our tournament, Ryan Campbell of Hickory, North Carolina took first place with a 39.6-pound Wahoo caught on the first day, by the way Ryan is my grandson, way to go Ryan. He caught the winner on a trolled X-Rap 40 orange Rapala on the first day of tournament fishing. Ryan’s big brother Stephen should get an assist on the catch as he provided a very nice and thick chum slick due to heavy partying the night before! Second place went to Ben Gregg of Phoenix, Arizona with a 10.2-pound Wahoo also caught on the first day. Since there were no other Wahoo caught, 3rd place went to Travis Nelson of Placentia, Ca. with a 15.2 Dorado caught on the second day, oh and by the way Travis is also my grandson, glad we could keep it in the family. Besides trophies the winners won Okuma reels, first place won a Okuma Cavalla CAV-12II second place a Okuma Tesoro TSR-10S and third place a Okuma Cavalla CAV-5II. Also, in the prize list were some very nice 3-piece travel rods, lures and bags. A special thank you to Dave Brown, Senior Marketing Specialist with Okuma, thank you Dave!

Next year’s Wahoo Rumble dates are set for Oct. 30 to Nov. 3, 2022, we once again will be staying at the Barcelo Gran Faro and our fishing days will be on Oct. 31, Nov. 1 & 2. The tournament package of $1050.00 per person will be include 5 days/4 nights lodging double occupancy, 3 days super panga fishing with two anglers per boat, all meals, drinks, snacks, taxes, tournament entry fee, tournament t-shirt and hat and round-trip transfers from the Cabo Airport to the hotel. Prices are subject to change.

For further information or to reserve your spot on this fun fishing tournament call Roxy at (800)593-6510 x 3 you can also call me a (951) 415-2505. I hope to see you all next year, stay safe…Cass

Cabo San Lucas    

All in a day’s work! 🎣 In just three days this week in Cabo, 165 Marlin Released for the fleet! The marlin fishing is close by, and it’s a wide-open bite. What more could you ask for to end this year? Pisces Sportfishing Fleet

Top boat yesterday: Pisces 31-foot Rebecca had 12 marlin released for two anglers aboard. Others had between 8 and 11 marlin released each!

LOCATION: The best fishing locations have been the Golden Gate Bank, Migrino, 25 to 30 miles, the 150 Spot, Cerro Colorado, 33 miles al Cerro, in front of Chileno, Palmilla, Arcos, and Marquis.

WEATHER CONDITIONS:The sea temps have been from 70 to 75 degrees, with the ocean clear with three-to-five-foot swells and 8-mph winds.  The air temps have been from 70 to 76-degrees.   

BEST LURES:The best bait has been alive or dead caballito, kites, Rapala, sardina, mackerel, “brujita,” and ballyhoo…Pisces Sportfishing Fleet    

That Baja Guy-Gary Graham    

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.

One thought on “A Baja Merry Christmas

  1. Another Great detailed report nice Job..Gary …makes our trip planning much easier!!!!!!!! Craig and Theresa Punta Chivato

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