Tuna, dorado, and striped marlin caught by East Cape fishing boats

Mexico Fishing News, April 7, 2003



EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Water temperatures averaging 70 to 73 degrees accompanied continued good action on dorado, yellowfin tuna, and striped marlin for boats out of Bahia de Palmas last week.

Chris Moyers of East Cape Smoke House reported on 60 boats from combined fleets including the Van Wormer resorts of Palmas de Cortez, Playa del Sol, and Punta Colorada with a catch including released fish of: 44 striped marlin, 2 sailfish, 220 dorado, 232 yellowfin tuna, and 8 roosterfish. East Cape weather was occasionally windy in the low-80s, with some afternoon chop. Most of the offshore fishing was south for tuna, dorado, and billfish, Moyers said, and boats had their best catches anywhere from 3 miles to over 30 miles off Punta Arena, Cabo Pulmo, and Los Frailes.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Buena Vista Beach Resort reported on 18 boats with a catch including released fish of: 8 striped marlin, 1 sailfish, 20 dorado, 40 yellowfin tuna, 3 roosterfish, 5 jack crevalle, 7 bonita, 1 skipjack, and 2 sierra. Water temperatures ranged from 73 to 75 degrees. The best dorado action was found about 20 miles offshore between La Ribera and the Punta Arena light.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: At Rancho Buena Vista, Tami Moyeous said 5 boats had a catch including released fish of: 4 striped marlin, 6 dorado, and 11 yellowfin tuna.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Larry Cooper of Los Barriles reported a Pacific barracuda caught while trolling for sierra among the anchored boats, about 100 feet off the beach, and also said that he'd heard a report that the Awesome had landed 2 more albacore, 30 miles due east of town.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: At Rancho Leonero, John Ireland reported variable water temperatures from 70 to 75 degrees, and early week catches of larger yellowfin tuna mixed with large dorado, 15 to 40 miles off the Punta Arena light. "Some striped marlin," Ireland said, "but not wide open. The last half of the week saw a wide-open roosterfish bite." Ireland said Leonero boats were averaging 5 dorado, as large as 55 pounds. Tuna of 20 to 75 pounds were on porpoise about 20 to 35 miles out. The roosterfish, to over 50 pounds, were being caught on live mackerel and sardinas, in large schools, south of the lighthouse.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Bob Cavanaugh and Dave Neil of Costa Mesa fished with Capt. Ramon Montano on the Pez Gallo out of Hotel Punta Colorada for three days and had a catch including released fish of: 45 yellowfin tuna to 40 pounds, 2 marlin to 155 pounds, 1 sailfish, more than 20 dorado to 45 pounds, plus jack crevalle, roosterfish, and sierra. "Alejandro and Eddie Van Wormer and staff did an excellent job and made our stay an enjoyable one," Cavanaugh said. "We fished 20 to 30 miles southeast from Punta Colorado, towards Los Frailes."

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: At Baja On The Fly, Gary Graham said part of the group led by Pudge Klienkauf of Alaska extended its East Cape trip after scoring on dorado, roosterfish, jacks, marlin, and sierra. The inshore action was good from Punta Colorada to the lighthouse, Graham said, with jacks, roosters, and dorado hammering bait schools. Beach fishing was hampered by winds, and the best action was on the partially sheltered stretch around Rincon.

EAST CAPE, MEXICO: Chuck Meredith of Costa Brava reported abundant dorado and tuna 40 miles due east, but a long, wet ride back in his super panga Mr. Chuck if the wind was blowing: "If I see the white caps out at sea coming, I will wait for tomorrow to fish, go to my bodega and make up a lure, or take apart a reel and fix a sticky drag."

Highly experienced inshore expert Peter Langstraat of Holland reported fantastic near shore dorado and roosterfish action during his recent trip, fishing from his 14-foot aluminum boat out of Hotel Punta Colorada with his girlfriend Mieke Schaap:

"During the last week (Feb. 21-27), dorado appeared in the bay near the Hotel Punta Colorada. After losing the first one on 8-pound line, I chased these unbelievable fast-moving fish for the next couple of days without success.

"To be able to move faster, I decided to troll a popper which gave me a hookup 3 days before the end of my vacation. I got the 4 foot 1 inch fish after 1 hour and 5 minutes on 14-pound line.

"Every day, somewhere between 8:30 and 11.30 a.m., a few times some part of the bay would explode with dorado, flying bait fish, and various diving birds. You would see some dorado bumping their noses against the beach in their feeding frenzy. Seeing them between 20 and 50 yards from the beach was common. Hooking them from the beach was possible and one Mexican friend did so, but lost it.

"On the last day, everything around us exploded, and roosters, dorado and big jacks were literally bumping heads to get to the baitfish first.

"After an initial, not very impressive run, our roosterfish was pumped towards the boat without putting up very much resistance. He couldn't, because 2 other big roosters pressed themselves against the left and right sides of his body, so our fish could not turn! The scenery was big roosters, big jacks, and dorado, showering bait fish along the beach over a stretch 2 miles long. It lasted no less than half an hour.

"The 'additional' roosters turned away after not less than 5 minutes, and our rooster started to drag us away from shore. My girlfriend grabbed my leader. Being pounded by 3-foot waves, holding on with 4 hands, we could see that from the corner of my boat his tail would at least reach the paddle holder on my boat, before the leader broke. A painful technical release, knowing that your fish is at least 4 feet 6 inches long. Three hours and 40 minutes on 14-pound line."

In other mainland Mexico and Baja fishing action this week:



ENSENADA, MEXICO: Ivan Villarino of Vonny's Fleet said pangas at the tip of Punta Banda found continued good action on rockcod and lingcod in partly cloudy, very cool conditions, and water temperatures of about 59 degrees.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Sammy Susarrey of Lily Fleet said the Lily found a surface school of yellowtail of 12 to 15 pounds, chasing bait 2 miles from Todos Santos Island. Seven yellowtail were caught on lures, and medium barracuda were also caught north of the island.

The Tamara caught large lingcod and good-sized calico bass at Maximino Reef, in water temperatures of about 60 degrees. Inside Bahia Todos Santos, water temperatures were about 60 degrees, Susarrey said.

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Earlier, Steve Ross reported on a mixed day on his boat Bad Dog, out of Marina Coral:

"We decided to go to Juan Lu's secret numbers on the Soledad Bank. As we arrived, we had the company of 6 other boats who also had the secret numbers. We caught one fish in almost an hour.

"We reeled them up and went for the numbers I have for the north end of the Banda Bank, and that's where we found the rockcod hanging out. We caught red vermilions, lingcod and boccacios. We did not catch anything exceptional.

"At 5.2 miles from Marina Coral there was a wind line as if someone had drawn it with a pencil. It was rough. The wind was gusting pretty good, maybe close to 30 in some cases.

"When I got into the marina it was awful, so I called Fito for support and two Mexican security men came to help. As I approached the aisle to our slip, the boat picked up speed in a current going down the aisle and it had 'Boat Accident' written all over it.

"I had to use a lot of changing gears, and Dorothy and Mike helped fend me off my neighbor as the bow ran away. This was the closest I have come to out-of-control. I got her in with no incident, but my blood pressure was definitely elevated from some pretty rare and difficult conditions. It was hairy and not one I'll forget for a while."

ENSENADA, MEXICO: Rod Lewis of Newport Beach reported constant winds and poor conditions while ferrying the 54-foot Offshore north from Cabo San Lucas. "Water on all the offshore banks were cold and off-color," Lewis said. "The Thetis had 62-degree water with no life. The wind blew all the way back until we reached Ensenada. Wind speeds of 15 to 25 knots and a swell of 8 to 10 feet. Not a pleasant ride. The only highlight was a catch of three, 30-pound tuna at the Golden Gate Bank, by a boat coming north behind us. It took us 5 days to come home, with stops in Turtle Bay and Santa Maria Bay."



SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Pete Hillis of Pedro's Pangas said winds and rough seas kept everybody but the die-hards inside the bay, but those who ventured out got nice limits of rockfish and lingcod.

"Jim Nolan from Buena Park brought down a large group that included some first-time lady anglers," Hillis said. "San Quintin's legendary winds whipped up some rough waters that left the ladies and a few of their male counterparts longing for land. Our captain Hector, and of course, Jim, decided to bring the boat in early."

On Sunday afternoon, the weather appeared to be turning, with abating winds and warming air temperatures in the low-70s, "but still real chilly in the evening," Hillis said.

SAN QUINTIN, MEXICO: Earlier, Julio Meza of San Quintin had a good catch of yellowtail to over 20 pounds at the 15 Spot, and many large lingcod at the 6 Spot, in calm but green water at about 60 degrees. Meza also said Larry Biedebach and Norm of Campo Lorenzo fished El Socorro, at 85 feet deep, for a good score on sandbass, Johnny bass, reds, and lingcod.

Meza also reported the recovery on March 29 of the body of local panguero Rogelio Vanlo Luna, who drowned on March 15 after a boating accident while fishing near shore about 3 miles north of the boca. "Rogelio was found just a few yards south of the place of the accident," Meza said. "To be honest, I never thought that Rogelio could be found because of the very bad weather and fast drift in the days after the accident. He has been given a proper burial."



MAGDALENA BAY, MEXICO: Gary Graham of Baja On The Fly reported San Carlos weather in the low-70s, and water temperatures of 65 to 70 degrees. Quantities of pelagic red crabs were at the entrada, Graham said, and the fish were not interested in bait or lures. "Everything seems to be plugged," he said. "Slow week in the esteros, with few trips being made. One I heard of came back with nary a fish." Smaller dorado and yellowfin tuna were reported 15 to 20 miles west of the entrada.



CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Striped marlin counts recovered a couple of notches in fishing action that remained generally sluggish. Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters said, "The bite picked up considerably this week, although angler activity was fairly slow." Edwards said 50 percent of Gaviota Fleet boats caught marlin during the week, and the overall catch including released fish was: 13 striped marlin, 23 yellowfin tuna, and 25 dorado. The dorado ran to 45 pounds, and the tuna to 60 pounds, Edwards said, and Gaviota Fleet boats also baited several broadbill swordfish, although none were hooked.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Picante Fleet reported on 4 boats fishing Thursday, with a catch including released fish of: 6 striped marlin, 14 dorado, and 12 yellowfin tuna.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Solmar Fleet reported a catch including released fish of: 12 striped marlin, 18 dorado, 50 yellowfin tuna, 2 mako shark, 14 sierra, 2 yellowtail, and 7 skipjack.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Tracy Ehrenberg of Pisces Fleet said, "Nothing really spectacular to report, but the fishing is coming along, we did see a slight increase on marlin catches." Pisces boats also saw quantities of 2 to 10-pound squid, Ehrenberg said, and the marlin appear to be stuffed with this food. Dorado were also full of pelagic red crab.

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: George Landrum of Fly Hooker Sport Fishing said Cabo weather was mostly cloudy, with some light sprinkles, winds to 20 knots on some afternoons, and daily highs in the mid-80s. Water temperatures ranged from as high as 74 degrees at the Cabrillo Seamount, to as low as 68 degrees on the Pacific side.

"The marlin bite picked up this week and the fish are closer to home," Landrum said. "The action moved down from the Gordo Banks area and the fish are now being found at the 95 Spot and just to the southeast of the Cape."

CABO SAN LUCAS, MEXICO: Wayne Bisbee announced dates for the four Baja Sur Bisbee's tournaments this year: East Cape, Aug. 5-9; La Paz, Sept. 11-14; Los Cabos, Oct. 17-19; and Black & Blue, Oct. 21-25.



SAN JOSE DEL CABO, MEXICO: Eric Brictson of Gordo Banks Pangas reported variable conditions and water temperatures ranging from 67 to 70 degrees off San Jose del Cabo. Near shore dorado and yellowfin tuna catches were slow for panga fleets, although there was a hot tuna bite at Destiladeras earlier in the week, Brictson said. Sierra numbers dropped, but some good catches of huachinango and pargos were made with pelagic red crab bait. Numbers of humpback whales were present, in addition to large schools of porpoise, a few turtles, manta rays, and sea lions.



LA PAZ, MEXICO: Mino Shiba of Mosquito Fleet said yellowtail action was "really good" at El Bajo, with fish to about 35 pounds landed in water temperatures of 68 to 72 degrees. Larger yellowtail, mixed with dorado, were also caught at Isla Espiritu Santo on trolled live bait.

LA PAZ, MEXICO: Jonathan Roldan of Tail Hunter International reported water temperatures of 71 to 76 degrees on the Las Arenas side. "We had more wind than we would have liked this week, but we still got fish," Roldan said. On the Las Arenas side, dorado counts dropped, but some were still caught, in addition to yellowtail, cabrilla, and sierra.

LA PAZ, MEXICO: David Jones of Fisherman's Fleet said the pargo liso haven't started schooling, but he's seen some nice fish, including one of 35 pounds that he caught at Las Pilis.



LORETO, MEXICO: Yellowtail fishing was in a holding pattern last week, with fish scattered and not being caught in great numbers.

Bill Sumner stayed at the recently re-opened Hotel Oasis and fished with Capt. Ismael Murillo: "I can report the Hotel Oasis is indeed back in business. Overall the yellowtail fishing was pretty scratchy. There were very good quality fish, 28 to 35 pounds, but scattered over a wide area. They were also a little line shy. We caught fish both fly lining and down deep. The most successful setup was a very long leader, 10 to 12 feet, so the weights and swivels were far from the bait. I did all my fishing with my new ringed and swiveled Owner 5/0 circle hooks made by Guy at www.ringedhooks.com. Not one yellowtail farmed. I am now a convert for custom circle hooks with swivels.

LORETO, MEXICO: Don Bear of Loreto fished with Capt. Paulino Martinez and had a so-so day: "We caught 2 large yellowtail, clearly over 20 pounds, and 1 cabrilla. All fish were caught in the area between Islas Coronado and Carmen known as Bajo Alfonso. A ship by that name burned and sank there many years ago. We tried other spots, La Cholla, Candelero and Piedra Blanca, without success. There were at least 15 pangas at Alfonso with most of them, I'm happy to say, carrying paying customers. I think our luck was fairly typical.

"The real action apparently was down south at what the locals call the Bajo de Seco, 7 miles south of Isla Catalana. Fabrizio Marangoni, a part time resident of Nopolo, and his group, fishing with Manuel Torres of Juncalito, caught 16 yellowtail to 40 pounds and 3 cabrilla."

LORETO, MEXICO: Arturo Sussarey of Arturo's Sportfishing reported Loreto weather as sometimes windy in the high-70s, with water temperatures of 71 to 72 degrees. Yellowtail were caught at San Bruno and Baja Alfonso, including fish to 35 pounds caught by Richard Castaneda's group of 13 pangas. Mackerel baits, plus squid of 2 to 10 pounds, were available at Pulpito, in front of town, or at Isla Coronado.

LORETO, MEXICO: Pam Bolles of Baja Big Fish Company said, "After the very nasty winds last week, we've finally gotten a break, only to find that the fish are not feeding like we'd expect. This is perhaps because they're starting to go into spawn, and is part of the normal, healthy cycle of life right in front of us in the Sea of Cortez."

LORETO, MEXICO: At Alfredo's Sportfishing, Linda Ramirez confirmed that the 2 yellowfin tuna caught near town recently weighed 26 and 28 pounds.



BAHIA DE LOS ANGELES, MEXICO: Abraham Vazquez of Camp Gecko at Bahia de los Angeles said fishing was only fair for local yellowtail of 15 to 20 pounds last week. The best action was still at Guadalupe Reef north of Isla Coronado, with fish hitting iron in midwater. "But definitely, the action is slowing down," Vazquez said. Local fishing was good for sandbass, goldspotted bass, and jawfish. L.A. Bay weather was in the high-80s, with some north and west winds and water temperatures of 60 to 62 degrees.



SAN FELIPE, MEXICO: Catalina Meders of San Felipe's Title Company Bookstore overlooking the bay said the town was windy last week and spring break crowd was very small. "Rumors abound," she said. "Nobody seems to really know. Meanwhile, it continues to 'wind,' as in trees waving their limbs around and white caps on the sea, which is a particularly gorgeous shade of pale turquoise blue this afternoon."



MAZATLAN, MEXICO: Larry Edwards of Cortez Yacht Charters said billfish action was slow, and anglers were concentrating on yellowfin tuna and larger dorado, with many in the 45 to 50-pound range. Aries Fleet boats out of Marina el Cid had an offshore catch including released fish of: 10 striped marlin, 1 sailfish, 39 yellowfin tuna, 2 mako shark, 1 blue shark, and 61 dorado. Inshore pangas were catching jack crevalle, roosterfish, and large sierra in the 8 to 12-pound range. Mazatlan weather was in the mid-80s, with water temperatures in the low-70s.



IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Local guide Ed Kunze said conditions improved greatly last week, as 78-degree water moved to within 8 miles of shore and caused a big jump in yellowfin tuna action. Capt. Poli on the Don Gordo caught a 175-pound yellowfin, Kunze said, and Luis Maciel lost an estimated 300 pounder at the boat, after a 4-hour fight only 10 miles from shore. "All the big fish are being taken on slow trolled large mackerel or black skipjack tuna," Kunze said. "At 18 miles from Zihuatanejo Bay, we counted 5 separate flocks of birds working the tuna schools. At one point, 100-pound-plus tuna were crashing bait only a few yards from the boat."

IXTAPA ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO: Stan Lushinsky of Ixtapa Sportfishing Charters said, "A southwest wind brought in some favorable water and the fishing improved dramatically towards the end of the week. The yellowfin tuna numbers were at times just short of unbelievable."

Fish Photo 1

HOT ZIHUAT TUNA BITE--Shown with a 175-pound yellowfin tuna caught at Zihuatanejo last week are, left to right, Capt. Poli of the Don Gordo, first mate Anibal (kneeling), and deckhand Graciano. The anglers on the boat were Gary and Sean Martin, Dave Bran, and Dennis Skinner of Fontana. Photo courtesy Ed Kunze.

Fish Photo 1 Fish Photo 1

SAN QUINTIN CATCH--Local angler Julio Meza with a nice lingcod and yellowtail caught recently out of Bahia San Quintin. Meza caught yellowtail to over 20 pounds at the 15 Spot.

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HOTEL PUNTA COLORADA CATCH--Bob Cavanaugh and Dave Neil of Costa Mesa fished recently out of Hotel Punta Colorada for a great 3-day catch including released fish of: 45 yellowfin tuna to 40 pounds, 2 marlin to 155 pounds, 1 sailfish, more than 20 dorado to 45 pounds, plus jack crevalle, roosterfish, and sierra

Fish Photo 1

LA PAZ CABRILLA--Charles Chang with some nice leopard grouper headed for the steam pot with ginger, soy, cilantro and garlic! The "cabrilla" were caught by slow-trolling blue mackerel Rapala CD-12s while fishing near La Paz with Tail Hunter International. Photo courtesy Jonathan Roldan.

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