Baja Bytes – May 17, 2022
The Third Annual Marina Puerto Escondido Fishing Tournament payout exceeds HALF-MILLION DOLLARS!
During the two-day event, 51 Teams competed for $577,800. The huge sum was awarded to those Teams catching the largest Yellowtail, the largest Dorado, and Releasing the most Billfish each day during the event.
First Place Overall went to Martha Macnab’s Team “Retriever” with 14 Striped Marlin Released, plus the Day Two Jackpots with 12 Marlin Released that day. “Retriever’s” total winnings were $106,800.
Second Place Marlin Release went to Team “Sea Angel” with 11 Marlin Released plus Day One Jackpots with 4 Marlin Released. They won a total of $95,100.
First Place Dorado Division Team “Pink Bullet” received $232,150 for their 42.3-pound Dorado caught by Kent Harrington from San Diego, Calif. Day One Dorado Jackpots (except the $500 option) rolled to Day Two. $232,150 is believed to be the largest sum ever awarded for a Dorado in a fishing tournament anywhere in Baja, or perhaps the world!
The Yellowtail Division scored large with 37 Yellowtail caught by Jon Nickerson, Yuma, Ariz., on boat “Foot N Half” owned by Dave Claborne, earning them $80,150 for their 29-pound and 37.2-pound yellowtail!
The Third Annual Marina Puerto Escondido Fishing Tournament has carved out its niche in the world of Baja Sportfishing Tournaments, underscoring that incorporating a variety of species and techniques to a broad spectrum of anglers should not be overlooked for a successful event.
Tijuana Bull Ring
The usual mix of mostly smaller-sized, mixed red rockfish species, some treefish, and bocaccio rockfish were biting pretty well off the Bull Ring, but there were a few nicer-sized fish. …Fishdope.com
Coronado Islands / Rockpile
The yellowtail action has been hit and miss. There aren’t a lot of yellows around right now, BUT if you stumble on a decent bite, the fish can go stupid. On Saturday, Mission Belle had an excellent day of fishing. They scored 69 yellowtail in the 10 to 15-pound class, and they bit everything – sardines, fly-lined and dropper looped, and surface and yoyo iron.
On Sunday, the bite dried up with only three yellows caught on the Mission Belle, which shows that you need to find the right school, or it can be slow fishing. Still, it’s an excellent sign for the near future.
Private boaters have been scoring some yellows by trolling Rapala X-Raps, and Nomad plugs along the weather side of North Island.
Also, boats were catching yellowtail between North Island and the ridge through the Middle Grounds on yoyo iron.
Add a legal-sized barracuda, or two caught on Sunday at the Ribbon Kelp in less-than-ideal water conditions. Recent reports are the water around South Island is dirty. …Fishdope.com
Yellowtail are showing up in an area two miles inside the south end of Todos Santos. Local pangas score by trolling X-Rap Rapalas and throwing surface iron to breezers.
The water is extremely dirty outside the Island, and the local tuna have bugged out. …Fishdope.com
West of Ensenada / Hidden Bank / Upper 500 / 295 / 238
There are still decent to good bluefin signs in the clean water on the Hidden Bank and the Upper 500.
The “old zone” around the 238 to the Banda Bank dried up with the cold, dirty water.
The best bet is close to, or right on, the color edge with the best odds on the clean, warm side.
Just like areas up to the north, these bluefin are primarily big fish, but there are schools of 20 to 40-pound units around. …Fishdope.com
Two Awesome days with brothers @capt.filletguy @george.catian Ahí viven @bajafishingfamily. …Oscar Catian
A 25-degree wind shift at 7:00-pm drove our temperature from 68 to 88 degrees in an hour here in Ascensión. …Ross Zoerhof
I went fishing with local guys on one of their pangas to learn how they fish – their techniques. They are not guides; they are commercial fishermen. The commercial guys have become more in tune with rod and reel. Their go-to lure is Yozuri surface minnow.
As soon as we left Isla Tortuga, the cabrilla began hitting the bait in a feeding frenzy right offshore. They cast the Yo-Zuri with long rods and great button reels. One guy even had a Shimano Tranx 500hg. We caught many small cabrilla, but a few reds were in the mix. One barely fit in the cooler. One of the biggest cabrilla I have ever seen weighed around 30 pounds. The panga next to us cast into a frenzy of fish and hooked a huge yellowtail. When we returned to the Co-Op scale, it weighed 23.8 kilos (over 52 pounds). We also hooked two decent yellowtail and a 10-pound cabrilla (approximately)…Nathan Burbey
We are still only in the middle of yellowtail season but judging from what I have seen on the returning pangas; people are getting bored with that scene.
Bottomfish and everything else, including the shallow water-loving triggerfish, are hitting the ice.
I have even seen some old-school spinning rigs mixed in with the standard weapons. Not the new, high-tech spinning stuff, the old “coffee grinders” made for 10-pound test and 2-pound trout!
I can’t imagine the hardship caused to this gear when a 20-pound yellowtail suddenly attacks! So pin a piece of squid on that 2/0 hook and hope for a gentle dinner guest.
Yes, it’s tournament time for yellowtail! It’s another month or so, and it’s dorado tournament time. How can it be dorado season when I have sinkers that have yet to see saltwater?
Put away the circle hooks and the 12 torpedoes and dust off the tuna feathers! …Rick Hill, Click Here
THE MEXICAN MINUTE LA PAZ FISHING REPORT from Tailhunter Sportfishing for the Week of May 3-9, 2022
Rude Boy scores dinner, and we aren’t talking about chicken! …Anibal Miranda
Puerto Los Cabos
There was a substantial crowd of visitors, but again, included were scores of wedding ceremonies, bachelor celebrations, reunions, etc. We did see a more significant number of anglers arriving. The weather patterns warmed up during this period, feeling like summer was right around the corner. There have been mostly sunny skies with high temperatures around 85 degrees. May is an ideal time of year with pleasant, warm conditions and afternoon breezes that keep things comfortable yet not too scorching.
Ocean water temperature quickly warmed up accordingly, and now it is in the 74 to 78 degrees range throughout the areas from Cabo San Luis north towards the East Cape. Water clarity improved, with clean blue currents pushing in. There were increased swells from the south sweeping in. The wind was a bit unpredictable, picking up early in the day from the north and switching from the southern directions over the weekend. But overall, there were excellent ocean conditions.
Bait sources included sardina, anchoveta, caballito, ballyhoo, and squid slabs. Although limited on sardina, it is encouraging that we even see some again. In addition, this season’s first schools of mullet are spearing along coastal stretches; this annual migration of these hardy baitfish also brings in more gamefish such as roosterfish, jack crevalle, dogtooth snapper, amberjack, and other species.
The majority of the local sportfishing fleets are fishing from La Fortuna, Iman, San Luis, and Vinorama. In addition, a smaller percentage of charters are heading towards Red Hill and the 1150 areas where they encountered sporadic striped marlin and dorado action on some days, and on other days not so much. It is still a transition period, changing daily.
The sportfishing fleet also reported a handful of scattered wahoo.
The week’s highlight was the yellowfin tuna, encountered near the 25 Spot, but later through the weekend, it was closer to Vinorama. These tuna were striking on drifted and slow-trolled live bait — anchoveta, sardina, and caballito. Sizes on these yellowfin averaged from 15 to 35-pounds, but anglers also landed fish to 35 pounds. There were no significant numbers, though many boats did return with two or three tuna, and a few more fortunate anglers accounted for up to ten fish!
The rock piles 80 to 200 feet continue to produce mixed action for yellow snapper, red snapper, rose snapper, leopard grouper, amberjack, yellowtail, jack crevalle, bonito, triggerfish, white fish, and an unusual number of the juvenile-sized tiger shark. More anglers are now targeting surface species since this action has just started showing more consistent opportunities.
Closer to shore, there were some schooling mullet appearing. In addition, we heard of some quality roosterfish, the first run of these popular gamefish this season. Roosters usually peak later in June and July. Spotty action for sierra and some hog-sized jack crevalle rounded out the inshore activity. …Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas
Cabo San Lucas
With May’s arrival, the fishing has returned to normal! EXCELLENT!!! Wahoo are back in the count, and some anglers are catching nice-sized fish up to 60 pounds.
However, the big news is the yellowfin tuna have returned, and limits are common. In addition, there are some cow-sized tuna in the mix weighing just under the 200-pound mark.
Not to be outdone, the anglers targeting striped marlin are releasing them in respectable numbers.
Then throw in an impressive lineup of inshore critters, including yellowtail, grouper, snapper, sierra mackerel, jack crevalle, and you have quite an excellent fishing package.
LOCATION: The best fishing locations have been Herradura, Migrino, 25 miles, 170 degrees, in front of Puerto Los Cabos, and the 95 Spot.
WEATHER CONDITIONS: The sea temps run from 69 to 72-degrees, with clear skies. The ocean has been calm, with three to five-foot swells and 6 to 9-knot winds. Air temps have been from 71 to 81-degrees.
BEST LURES: The best bait has been alive or dead mackerel, flying fish, sardina, ballyhoo, caballito, and various lures, in addition to surface and deep-running plugs, like Rapalas and Marauders. … Pisces Sportfishing Fleet
That Baja Guy-Gary Graham