Baja California, Mexico



Aug. 26, 2006, Jeff Rumble, Bahia San Nicolas, Baja California Sur, Mexico:

Pete Jenista and I fished the waters around Bahia San Nicolas during the week of August 15-August 20. The roads down Baja were mostly good, with the primary exception being a stretch of serious construction in between Guerrero Negro and San Ignacio.

The weather was quite variable. We have a flat-bottomed inflatable boat, so the Baja wind kept us off the water for the first couple of days. Then we had calm in the morning with sunny skies. After that, we had calm in the morning with cloudy skies and brutal humidity.

We spent a good bit of time both trolling the inshore reefs and casting small lures off the rocks. Annoyingly the dominant fish turned out to be California Scorpionfish. Tasty, but with small fillets and poisonous spines.

We also caught good numbers of triggerfish, Chino Mero, and a couple of oddities including baby yellowtail and an aquarium-sized bonefish for Pete. My Chino Mero at just under 5 pounds was a standout.

As soon as we were able to get offshore, we headed out for the area just outside of Isla San Ildefonso. That was a total bust. We had an entertaining visit from some dolphin, but that was about it. We typically find that area to be offshore heaven, but not this year.

Heading back inside the island, we found smaller dorado hanging around the commercial handliners. We pulled up and drifted the area, seeing many. We then trolled the area with Yo-Zuri Hydro Magnums and caught several fish.

The next day we tried the water just off Punta Pulpito and found it to be loaded. We caught fish on the troll, then pulled up by the pangueros and caught several on live sardinas and on squid. After that, we trolled again and caught a couple more.

The following day, under the clouds, the fishing was much tougher. Just a few fish were caught, mostly on live bait near the pangueros. It was tough getting past the Green Jack to get to the dorado on this day, though we hadn't seen any of the jacks the day before.

On all three days offshore, the dorado were all small, ranging from about 8 pounds to 15 pounds. The exception was the 40+ pound fish that we saw one of the pangueros catch. We cheered. Pete's fish, at just over 15 pounds, was our biggest.

Part of the time near the pangueros was spent fishing the deep reefs with cut squid. We caught a couple of Goldspotted bass, numerous Pacific Creolefish, and one medium sized squid. The squid was followed up to the boat by several of its friends, making for some interesting video and even a bit of laughter, as one of them appeared to be eyeing one of Pete's lures that was hanging a foot and a half above the water.

The other really productive fishing that we enjoyed was casting bait off the beach at night. In between the grunts, moray eels, and stingrays, we also caught quite a few nice pargo of several different species. My Pargo Amarillo of just under 6 pounds was especially nice, but both of us caught pargo almost is big, both Barred and Yellow. The last fish of the trip was caught at night, sand bull shark that ran for at least 75 yards and nearly spooled me.

All in all it was a good Baja trip. It was nice to see the glowing shrimp at the water line again, they bite, by the way, to see so many sea turtles, jumping manta rays, and some quality shooting stars.

And we had a good week of Baja fishing. In just 5 days, two guys fishing from shore and out of an inflatable boat totaled 235 fish of 28 different species. Not bad at all.

(See "Mexico Fishing News" online for current fishing reports, photos, weather, and water temperatures from Baja and other major Mexican sportfishing areas. Vacation travel articles, fishing maps and seasonal calendars, and fishing related information for Baja California may be found at's main Baja page.