Baja February yields wahoo, dorado and yellows

Discussion in 'Baja Bytes By Gary Graham' started by Baja Bytes, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. Baja Bytes

    Baja Bytes Baja Editor BD Writer

    Lake Elsinore, CA USA
    Gary Graham
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    Baja Bytes Weekly Overview
    Friday, February 19, 2016
    Gary Graham

    Que Pasa


    Great seminars and plenty of Baja folks to visit with. I will be in the IGFA (201) booth all weekend. Stop by and say hello.

    Coronado Island

    The Malihini and Mission Belle both posted nice counts for yesterday, so it seems like this bite might have some legs. Unfortunately, we’re supposed to have some weather roll in later this week, so hopefully we can reacquire these fish when it passes.

    Yellowtail continue to show on the Finger Bank below the Rockpile. Fish begin to show on the sonar at about the Rockpile but not in any volume until you get to about 32.08 x 117.04 – 117.05 and then the meat of the fish is spread from there down the .04 – .05 line to about 32.01 x 117.04.
    The Yellows are running about 120 to 130 feet down in area of working birds which are feeding on a mix of Anchovy and Red Crab.
    There are some smaller Yellows at the Islands. Some in the lee of South Island and a few at North Island but by far and away the volume is down on the Finger Bank.
    Water around the Islands isn’t all that good either. It is improving but is not the quality of the water down on the Finger Bank.
    Yoyo iron is the ticket for these big quality Yellows. The fish are holding steady in the 18 to 25lb class with a handful per boat over 30 and pushing the 40lb mark.
    Scrambled Egg is hot followed by Blue/White and Green/White.
    The Bait Wraps Red Squid is smoking hot too.
    The 6xjr is working just fine but the Tady 4/0, the Salas 6x heavy and the 7x heavy are all working as well.
    Might want to give the Rockfish a try as well…



    Big yellows show up again north to san Miguel reef, they been hit Rapala 30 deep trolling… Sammy Susarrey Amador

    Weekend with great weather & several reports of yellow tail sightings off course more than what they can catch, Again seals everywhere !!! a nightmare for anglers this season.

    The " Reel Adventure " between Friday and Saturday caught 11 yellows all on Salas 6X lures 200 ft. range depth at the south point of island Todos Santos ., " Gamefisher " report that at north of san Miguel Reef at same depth range 13 yellows all keepers and full of bait. Using blue and white 7X Salas .

    Whale watching season did start for us, with hundreds of whales at our beautiful coast !! Something not miss while you are visiting …Coral Marine Store


    Boats are running for this area on the weekends and finding good Yellowtail action when the weather allows it. There is a large volume of 18-25lb Yellowtail in the area
    Last weekend the Wind blew so some boats really struggled but they all saw tonnage of Yellowtail.
    It is all yoyo iron fish. You need the BIG jigs like the Salas 7X Heavy or the Bait Wraps Kraken XXL to get down to the

    San Quintín

    After the nice weather last week. We fished with old clients Pete, Jeff and Gary. Huge swell came in with a little wind on it. We went 7 for 11 yellowtail and limits of white fish.

    Bahía de Los Angeles

    No Report

    Gonzaga Bay


    But we had a panga for Sunday and a room for Saturday and Sunday nights, and that was enough for us! Without a solid plan, we ran over to Papa Fernandez and ended up hitching a ride with the guys there. We had good weather but they didn't exactly run us to the secret spots. They also didn't want to go to the islands. Alex

    Laguna Ojo de Liebre


    It has been a spectacular week in the lagoon with friendly whale encounters on nearly every trip I have guided. The mothers are pushing their calves up to the boat and the older calves are coming over to the boats on their own. The lagoon is thick with whales now with over 2,000 here. We had wonderful calm weather and usually we were the only boat in our area so we had the whales all to ourselves.

    The calves are growing and maturing quickly and becoming very curious about humans and spending more time playing with the pangas.

    We have been enjoying the sunrises and sunsets here at the lagoon as well as the great food at the restaurant and the wicked margaritas! It has been like summer so we have been swimming in the lovely water of the lagoon.

    Here are a few photo highlights from the week. I am now living at the Whale Magic base camp in Palapa #1 so am not online and only go to town every few days to file reports and check emails. If you want to come out on a trip, tell the young man at the gate to the lagoon…not the salt works gate….Shari Bondy

    Bahía Ascensión

    No Report…Shari Bondy

    La Bocana

    Captain Ali Hussainy and Captain Rush Maltz of Local Knowledge Fishing TV Show continue their exploration of Baja Mexico in Episode 2 Part 2. They sample the diverse inshore nursery grounds of the Estero La Bocana and learn how the locals are preserving these waters.


    A picture is worth a thousand words…Juanchys Aguilar




    Tony and "Gali" (of "Everybody Knows Gali") helping out Craig and Ann Whitson with their four Coronado yellowtail.

    We got a great break in the weather this week with the winds backing off to almost zero for a few midweek days.

    Variety is also part of the good news with all sizes of yellowtail, cabrilla barred pargo and some big members of the hard to spell snapper family; huachinango.

    One huachinango hit the fillet table and I did a double take it was so big. Most of the ones we see are deep fried whole and the size of a dinner plate! This one looked like an 8 pound pargo not a Baja panfish!

    The south side of Coronado Island fizzled out after a good three week run of good yellowtail fishing. By Wednesday the action was outside of Carmen's "Lobo" at the "50" spot.

    Down south the good news was that our bait seller has found a good stash of mackerel that will hopefully put an end to the live bait drought. It's been a tough challenge for over a year and we will have to wait and see if "Antonio" from Juncalito has found the magic formula.

    The yellowtail season is just getting started and it seems that every boat that returns has spotted marlin and scores of flying fish.

    Whales are here and moving around the islands. Also the scenery has been including dolphin, big manta rays jumping all over and a resurgence of the sea turtle population.

    When the water is calm like glass you can see all the attending sea creatures!

    This coming week looks to have another mid-week of calm days. More of the further rock piles will be checked out looking for the 40 pound yellows…Rick Hill, Pinchy Sportfishing

    Magdalena Bay

    No Report

    La Paz


    Not a bad day of fishing, but more incredible because these wahoo and yellowtail caught by Ken Gragg and Carl Lange from Bakersfield CA were caught in FEBRUARY! Captain Pancho on the left helps out!

    Another hard-to-believe fish ,but take a look at Gary Wagner standing outside his place in Bahia de los Muertos with a nice bull dorado. Last year, this would have been one of the largest bull dorado of the year when there were so many dinks! But, again…this is WINTER and dorado time is summer and fall! Gary is the owner of the famous Giggling Marlin Bar in Cabo San Lucas.…Jonathan Roldan, Tailhunter

    East Cape


    Finally a few calm days…Van Wormer Resorts

    San José del Cab0

    Crazy season, even the whale migration seems off, not as many being seen off of the San Jose del Cabo area as would be normal for this time of year. Plenty of sea lions on the fishing grounds, awaiting their opportunity at an easy meal, grabbing fish that are hooked on angler’s lines. The bait situation remains the same, sardineta continue to school offshore and can be caught on sabiki rigs early in the morning, caballito, cocinero, squid strips and ballyhoo are also available, though we heard of no reports at all of any sardina being found.

    Ocean clarity became a bit more greenish close to shore, north to Los Frailes, water temperature was also coolest closer to shore, about 72/74 degrees on the average, while five or more miles offshore there was 75/76 degree water reported.

    All around the fishing action was more scattered this past week. Yellowfin tuna, dorado and wahoo action became very limited. A few tuna were being hooked, most of these found from La Fortuna to the Iman Bank, and best chances were early in the day, also getting a hooked yellowfin actually in the boat was a challenge with the ever present sea lions lurking nearby.

    Most of these tuna were in the 15 to 25 lb. range and anglers were fortunate to land one or two of these fish. Dorado were almost nonexistent, who knows where they have gone, wahoo were still around, but fewer were being hooked up, more action early in the week, with very few of these speedsters being reported later in the week. Water temperature cooled off where these wahoo had been schooling off of Punta Gorda, also a bit off colored, with winds settling down these fish could decide to become more active again as conditions improve.

    Bottom action was spotty, most common catches being triggerfish and smaller sized snapper/pargo species, with a handful of cabrilla (leopard grouper) in the mix. More hammerhead moving in on the structure, where we commonly bottom fish, makes for an additional challenge. On at least a couple of occasions, anglers reported that something very large grabbed on to their hooked up tuna, only to head for the rocks and break the line, sounds like some grouper or dogtooth snapper are moving in.

    The action for striped marlin continues off of San Jose del Cabo, mostly centered from 3 to 5 miles offshore, changing daily, most charters targeting these billfish are having chances, some several per day, majority of hook ups came while drift fishing with the available larger baits, sizes on the marlin ranged from 70 lb. to 120 lb.

    Inshore there was some roosterfish and sierra action, a few nicer sized roosterfish were accounted for, up to 25 lb., impressive for this time of year. There was a reported 25 lb. class snook landed from a panga charter while trolling close to shore for roosterfish, off of the Estuary area, definitely an unusual catch.

    A few more sierra in recent days, the lack of sardinas has really hurt the sierra season, fun fish on light tackle, scrappy and very fast fighters.

    Just no big numbers of any particular species at this time, though spring is now right around the corner, transition time can be like this, but things can also change very fast...Eric Brictson, Gordo Banks Pangas.

    Los Cabos
    Nice job Jay and Thomas from Richmond, Virginia! They caught 15 yellowfin tunas (10-15-20 lbs) aboard 31ft Ruthless with Beto and Martin Sr. close to Todos Santos!

    It has been another very slow week of catching for the Cabo San Lucas sportfishers and even though the water temperatures and clarity remains good in most of the regular "hot spots", the fish have been considerably un-cooperative for another week. There has been plenty of mackerel available for bait just a mile out front of Pedregal but the billfish that were mixed in with the bait have seemed to vanish, at least temporarily.

    Cabo Climate: Air Temps varied from 64 nights to 88 daytime highs and an average 45.5% humidity level. A mostly sunny week with a couple of partly cloudy days but overall, excellent weather conditions.

    Sea Conditions: Sea surface flow mostly from the westerly directions and varied from near calm mornings to about 15 mph in the afternoons. Water temperatures varied from 73-75 degrees from the Pacific side to the Sea of Cortez side and overall, good water clarity for fishing.

    Best Fishing Area: There was no specified good fishing area this past week and the various fleets fished in all outbound areas with very little successes for the anglers…Larry Edwards
  2. Tunahead

    Tunahead Long Time Tuna Abused Member

    Costa Mesa
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    Awesome Report Gary, lot of nice fish and smiles!
    Hope that mass of yellows hangs around down south! LOL
    Man I'm foamin', trip on Condor now next Friday the 26th
    to Colonet. We are GO. ROCK THE BAJA!
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2016

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