EAST CAPE — Roosterfishing at the East Cape was the stuff of legends last week, and that bite was the tip of the mountain when it comes to the outstanding action the region has been enjoying.
John Ireland at Hotel Ranch Leonero reported to WON the bite has been off the charts.
“Anglers targeting (pez) gallos are having a poor day if they don't release at least one 50 pounder daily,” he said. “They are finding them both north and south, with the bigger fish coming in around the light house. We’ve had extraordinary fishing for gallos.”
“Two large schools of porpoise were holding bigger tuna this past week,” Ireland said. “There were some footballs to 30 pounds and limits for all anglers but much lighter pressure than the previous week. The schools have been about 20 miles off La Ribera and we’ve had very consistent tuna fishing on cedar plugs and hoochies.”
Ireland said ranch guests also had good bill fishing.
“We have enjoyed a very consistent, strong striped marlin bite all season and this past week was no exception.” Ireland said they have been very close to the hotel, at the most a 10-minute boat ride. “They have been just two to three miles off the hotel and La Ribera. Most boats were releasing at least two a day. The marlin love the frozen ballyhoo and it’s definitely been the bait of choice.”
“Dorado were not as predictable as some of the other species,” Ireland said. “Boats running into the right floating structure in the Cortez were scoring some nice dorado in the 15- to 30-pound range. The big bulls were being taken on trolled marlin lures.”
“This past week the tuna seemed to disappear early in the week,” Ed Dalmau from the Van Wormer Resorts said. “We did however see some nice dorado up to 45 pounds and some really nice roosters up to 60 pounds. Then, like we have seen in weeks past, the end of the week came and the tuna came back. Boats were coming in with limits of mostly footballs, with some tuna up to 50 pounds.”
“We are still seeing some nice dorado, although most have been in the 10- to 20-pound range,” Dalmau said. “The marlin bite picked up a bit as well, with some boats landing two or three a day. But most haven’t been too interested in the billfish because there has been plenty of tuna, dorado and roosters around. Some of the other species landed this past week include jacks, triggerfish, pargo and bonito.”
“All week our East Cape weather has been about as nice as it gets,” said Mark Rayor of Jen Wren Sportfishing. “The seas have been calm with daytime temperatures between 85 and 90 degrees and the water temperature has risen to above 80 degrees. Inshore it is still a bit off color but offshore we are starting to see that beautiful purple-blue color.” “Inshore the outstanding roosterfish bite continues,” Rayor said. “Rincon, Punta Arena and La Ribera have been hot spots. Drifting green jacks has been most effective for the larger fish and slow trolling live baits have provided constant action.
” Rayor said just a few miles offshore striped marlin have been very cooperative. “Most boats targeting billfish are releasing multiple fish,” he said. “It is a bit surprising not many blue marlin have shown up yet. Small skipjack, yellowfin and dorado are here in big numbers and are the main food source for the blues. With that said, it is my hope the big marlin won't be far behind.”
“Offshore 15 to 30 miles, most boats looking for yellowfin are scoring limits of football-sized fish,” Rayor said. “These fish are not on porpoise but are being sighted breezing on the surface feeding on red crabs and squid. Our secret weapon for these fish has been Halco lures. Cedar plugs are also working well but the Halcos are attracting a little better grade of fish. We stopped trolling hoochies because they are attracting more skipjack than tuna.”
“Quality yellowfin to 100 pounds have been found with porpoise schools,” Rayor said. “But getting them to bite has not been easy. Positioning the boat in front of the porpoise school and pitching in a live bait has been the most effective method. We have been metering a lot of fish at 40 to 60 feet but they just haven't decided to come up and bite yet.”
“With lots of boats out this past week, anglers at our resort raked up the numbers for marlin and roosterfish releases; not to mention a lot of released jacks, tuna and dorado,” Axel Valdez from Buena Vista Beach Resort said. “And there were also a lot of released jacks, tuna and dorado. But the action has been non-stop for our guests on tuna and dorado, as they have all been limiting out, although most were small.”
“We had 18 striped marlin and 7 sailfish this past week,” Valdez said. “They were found only 2 to 4 miles offshore from Punta Colorado to the lighthouse on both lures and baits. Dorado were found from Los Frailes out to the shark buoys and the tuna on cedar plugs out from Cabo Pulmo.” Valdez said the largest rooster weighted about 75 pounds, while the larger dorado weighed 40 and the tuna were going to 40 pounds.
PENDING RECORD ROOSTER — Jack Kautz landed this monster 101-pound, 2-ounce roosterfish on just 20-pound test at Las Arenas. The fish will be a line class record if approved by IGFA. PHOTO COURTESY OF JACK KAUTZ
In other Baja fishing action:
— BAHIA ASUNCION (Just south of Guerrero Negro): Yellowtail fever has returned to Bahia Asuncion with fish being caught all week long in different areas by both trolling and jigging.
Shari Bondy of Campo Sirena said some nice big tails are coming in around the 25- to 35-pound range. “The calico fishery continues to be excellent as well from the shore,” Bondy said. “The weather has been absolutely gorgeous and there’s not too much swell.”
— BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES & SEA OF CORTEZ MIDRIFF: The Padre Lucas Tournament had wide open yellowtail action as the area enjoys some of the best fishing in years.
Reporting on a recent tourney here, Jay Hammer sent the following report in. “After a few years of minimal tourism despite good fishing; Bahia de Los Angles is now bustling with anglers as the fishing has been off the charts this year,” Hammer said. “Chubasco Diaz, of Casa Diaz said it is without a doubt the best fishing we have had in years and the hotel business is way up from the last few years, reservations are now needed here again.”
Hammer said the bay is full of yellowtail and the island trips in 27-foot pangas to Angel a La Guarda are producing the big boys. “This also has turned out to be a banner year for leopard grouper and cabrilla,” he said. “Big grouper also were on the move, as fishing guide Igor nailed a 120-pound black seabass; unfortunately his client was not in the tournament. We just missed the moon for the white seabass bite, which also had been producing record numbers.”
“This year Sammy Diaz’s Gordo I took top honors for the second time in tournament history,” Hammer said. “Capt. Cacahuate, who had suffered a stroke just a few weeks prior to the event, came out to captain for his friends JB Hardy and Gary Wagner. Wagner had won the first Copa in 2009 with Cacahuate on Gordo I. Hardy brought home the cup this year. Gordo I is the only boat and captain to win the cup twice. Alfredo’s Pangas and private boat Aquaholic won previous years.”
“Hardy also brought boxes of medical supplies for the clinic again this year as we try to improve the clinic,” Hammer said. “At the awards dinners the cup was passed for donations for Cacahuate, who has not been fishing for weeks because of the stroke he suffered, of which he is still not totally recovered. On another sad note, was the news that Lucy from Guillermo’s had come down with heart problems and after a stint in Ensenada was going to Arizona for better treatment.”
— CABO SAN LUCAS: A full moon is great for honeymooners, but not for anglers and the opportunity for fish to feed 24/7 impacted the fishing both inshore and offshore.
“We want the moon gone so we can catch a bunch of fish,” Tracy Ehrenberg from Pisces Sportfishing said. “Still, we had some nice catches. The Rebecca released a striped marlin and a pacific sailfish estimated at 130 pounds. For a pacific sailfish, that is a very nice size since they usually weigh between 75 and 90 pounds.”
“The Andrea released 2 sailfish and landed 3 dorado but the catch of the week goes to Bill Collector, landing 7 yellowfin tuna and releasing a swordfish estimated at 200 pounds,” Ehrenberg said. A total of 27 billfish were caught this past week by Pisces anglers and 26 were released. The billfish success rate was 60 percent.
Ehrenberg said small game catch rates suffered as well with the full moon. “With all the fish feeding at night it gets harder to catch them in the morning. La Brisa landed 8 dorado the rest of the catches were between 2 and 4 dorado.
“Until last week, we were catching tuna and dorado around the same spot as the marlin,” Ehrenberg said. “The dorado is still at Destiladers, along the marlin but the yellowfin tuna moved and most of the catches were closer to Cabo; around the 1150 spot. So we are figuring out where to get them again, however, most clients have been more interested in the marlin so we have not really chased after the tuna.”
“Fishing from Cabo San Lucas has required some serious effort on the part of the crews and anglers as sea conditions have been changing rapidly, almost on a daily basis and continues to do so, plus we had the full moon,” Larry Edwards said, reporting for the Gaviota Sportfishing and Fish Cabo fleets.
“The skippers have to stay on top of the sea temperatures readings every morning before leaving the dock just to provide them with a minimal edge for the day,” Edwards said. “During the past 14 days and 35 charters we’ve had 22 stripers with 20 releases, 56 dorado with about half released due to small sizes, 1 mako shark, 22 yellowfin tuna, 6 red snapper and 5 sierra. High billfish boat was the Tuna Time, with 5 releases for three days fished.”
WATER’S BEGIN TO CLEAR IN CABO — It’s been a long transition for Baja Sur water’s this year but it looks like things may be turning around. Shown here are Matthew and Jane Kovacs from Austin, TX with two of their 3 dorado. They also released 2 sailfish that day on the Andrea. PHOTO COURTESY OF PISCES SPORTFISHING
— CEDROS ISLAND: Jose Angel Sanchez-Pacheco of Cedros OUTDOOR Adventures was back at it again this past week, this time with a fun group of nine visiting the island.
“They were rewarded with very busy days, pulling yellowtail that averaged 20 pounds,” Angel said. “Most fish were caught on the lee side of the island because the wind was stronger on the south side. The fish seemed to prefer blue on white jigs over live bait this past week, although we were able to witness some of the long range boats in the area getting 35-plus-pound yellowtail with live mackerel next to the town of El Morro.”
“The time to fish the yellowtail and the calico was very early in the morning (6-10 a.m.) and late in the afternoon right before sunset, while in-between (11-3 p.m.) there were no catches and a good time for siestas,” Angel said.
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