WEATHER: I almost put on a heavy long-sleeved shirt yesterday morning as it was 68 degrees outside! That is the coldest I have seen it so far this season and it felt great. As the day went on it warmed to 88 degrees and if that’s not great weather, I don’t know what is! We had a few clouds over us early in the week but then it cleared and we have had blue skies from Tuesday on through the weekend. The winds have been variable with a few gusty days starting the week, but things leveled out into the normal days flow with calm mornings and breezy conditions starting about noon. Most of the wind has been from northerly directions.
WATER: There were no temperature breaks out there again, the water was a pretty even 81-84 degrees from up on the Pacific all the way to the East Cape, and it was clean, blue water as well. On the Pacific side the surface conditions were great in the mornings once we went past Tuesday, earlier in the week than that and it was a bit bumpy in the mornings due to the winds. The swells were coming in at 2-5 feet and spaced well apart, making it a smooth ride. On the Cortez side the winds were lighter and had little effect on the fishing between here and San Jose, I heard that the wind had more effect the farther up the coastline you went. The swells on this side of the Cape were small and insignificant at 1-3 feet.
BAIT: The water has cooled a few degrees, down from the 86 degree water we were seeing a month ago and as a result there are a few Mackerel showing up as bait. Buying Mackerel or Caballito from the bait boats sets you back about $3 per bait and there have been very few Sardines this week here, but there have been a limited availability if you travel north to San Jose.
BILLFISH: With the water still warm enough there are still Blue and Black Marlin around, but no large ones that I heard of, and no great numbers either. The best results I know of in the past week on these larger fish came from the Pacific side as one of our clients had a double hook-up on small Blue Marlin. He was fishing solo and one fish came off right away, the other was released at the side of the boat after about an hour of fighting time, with plenty of pictures as it was held in the water. The fish looked to be about 225 to 250 pounds. Other boats reported hooking one now and then with almost all of them released or lost, I only heard of one that was brought in. As far as the Striped Marlin go, things are starting to pick up. This is nice to hear since things have been a bit slow. The cooler water bringing in the Mackerel has the Striped Marlin following them, and as most of the bait has been deep, the best results on Striped Marlin have been had by boats that are hooking up live bait and dropping it down to where the bait is. The usual areas such as the ledge off of the lighthouse, the point at Los Arcos and the mouth of Migraino Canyon, areas where the bait tends to stack up, have played host to many of the local fleet boats giving this method a try. Some boats have been working on the Golden Gate Bank as this is often the first area within easy reach for the fleet that these fish stack up on. A few more boats have been traveling as far as 50 miles up the coastline to the Finger Banks in the hope of getting into these fish early, before the pressure intensifies. Many of these fish have been small, between 50 and 90 pounds, but there have been a few large ones of over 200 pounds caught as well. While the fishing is picking up, it is still not a wide open bite, perhaps that will happen withing the next several months as the water cools even more and the Mackerel appear in force. We are really hoping to see large numbers of big Sardines as well, that was the major feed when we had the great fishing several years ago. Folks, if you are going to be Marlin fishing, remember that catch and release will ensure we have these fish for our children to catch!
YELLOWFIN TUNA: The fantastic action that happened several weeks at the Gordo Banks continues to slow down. There were a few fish reported every day the week before last, this past week it was even slower with only a few large Tuna taken. Other than that, there were only a few reports of any Yellowfin being caught. One boat with our clients found a stump with the roots in the air about 25 miles out and caught a large number of football size tuna off of it, but the porpoise pods that have been found have been empty of fish life. Once in a while a Yellowfin has been caught by boats chumming heavily along the coast in front of the Cabo Del Sol area, but most of the fish coming in to these chum lines have been big Bonito.
DORADO: I wasn’t sure if I should call Dorado “fish of the week” again or not, since the bite dropped off, but they are still the most common catch. Again, most of the action has been on the Pacific side of the Cape and finding feeding Frigate Birds, being the first one there and slow trolling live bait has been the key to consistent catches. It’s either that, or trolling lures until you hook a fish then keeping him in the water as a decoy, dropping back live bait or cut strip baits to any fish that come in to follow him. Both methods worked well for boats that only wanted Dorado. Quite a few fish were caught by boats dropping bait for Striped Marlin, a nice break when the bite on the big fish was slow, and putting something in the boat that was good to eat.
WAHOO: As we approach the full moon the bite on Wahoo has improved a bit. I have heard reports from boats traveling to the Punta Gordo area and past there that they have been getting bit on a regular basis. Once that happened almost every one of them put out a trolling plug on wire leader and worked the area where they got bit. About half of them managed to get a fish in the boat. On the Pacific side the same thing has happened up the coastline toward Cerritos beach. There have been no big numbers of fish, there never are any great catches except by a few people who specialize in these speedsters, but the bite has improved, and hopefully they will remain around for the next month or so.
INSHORE: Inshore fishing remains slow with most boats working outside the beach area for Dorado. Those we have had out, mostly fly fishing, have reported occasional Dorado, small Roosterfish, plenty of Needle fish and green Jacks and loads of Bonito. Working the bottom has produced a few nice snapper and a couple of grouper as well.
FISH RECIPE: Check the blog for this months recipe!
NOTES: Thanksgiving is over and we had a really great time with 30 people attending, lots of food and drink. The only downside was no football! Our TV system (at home)has been having problems for several months and we thought it was finally fixed as the TELMEX tech. Came Thanksgiving at noon, did a quick check and said he would be back in an hour after doing some switch work downtown to improve our service. 30 minutes later, no TV, no Phone Line, no Internet, nada. He finally returned the next day and we still have no TV, sigh. Everyone had a great time anyway, so all is good. Until next week, tight lines!
And as always, George writes this report
and posts it on Sunday morning. So if you
can’t wait, click the “FOLLOW” on the top of the
page! You will know whenever something new is posted!