FLY HOOKER SPORTFISHING
Captain George Landrum
Cabo Fish Report
Jan. 27 – Feb. 2, 2014
WEATHER: We had mostly sunny skies this week with the highs in the mid 80’s and lows in the low 60’s. I heard that in a few spots it reached the mid 50’s but not at the marina or at our house. We did have a bit of rain this week. Last week I mentioned that it had felt humid at the end of the week and we had seen some low black clouds that made it feel as if it would rain. We didn’t have any of those low black clouds on Monday, just cloudy skies, but in the evening we did get rain, steady enough to get everything wet but not strong enough to wash the cars! Winds were from the north-north-east at the end of the week.
WATER: We did have great water conditions once again with the exception of early in the week on the Pacific side in the afternoons. During that time frame for the first three days the winds blew fairly strong causing some very choppy conditions up past the lighthouse and offshore. Of course the afternoons are when most boats were coming back to the marina so it was a downhill, downwind run and not to uncomfortable. The rest of the time the seas on the Pacific side were in the 1-4 foot range and water temperatures were 74 early in the week, slowly dropping to 70-71 degrees by the end of the week. On the Cortez side of the Cape the water was smooth, almost like a pool most of the week with swells 1-2 feet and wind riffles in the afternoons. The water temperature dropped on this side as well with water toward the shore from the 95 spot and the 1150 going from 74 degrees to 72-71 degrees, and the water on the Gorda Bank dropping from 76 degrees at the start of the week to 74 at the end of the week.
BAIT: There was no lack of bait this week and you could buy as many Mackerel and Caballito as you wanted for the usual $3 each. Still no Sardinas that I was aware of.
BILLFISH: I was a bit surprised this week that the action on Striped Marlin slowed down a bit, I was sure that the new moon phase would help the bite. Instead, we were seeing between 65-70% of our anglers getting hooked into and releasing a Striped Marlin. The fish have also started to appear in areas other than on the Pacific side at the high spots, we were finding them on the Cortez side as well, not in any great numbers, but a stronger showing than we had been seeing the week before. The cooling water may have something to do with this as Striped Marlin seem to prefer water in the 70-72 degree range. With the fish scattered out a bit more, trolling became the preferred method of finding a Marlin. Spotting a tailing fish then running to it and tossing a bait in front worked better than sitting on the high spots drifting a live bait, and much better than slow trolling a live bait. The fish also were not shy about slamming a trolled lure!
YELLOWFIN TUNA: Inside one day and outside the next, you were never sure where the Tuna would appear on a daily basis. The only sure thing was the more water you covered the better chance you had of getting into a good tuna bite. Boats found these fish from a mile off the beach up by Los Arcos to 35 miles out at 210 degrees, and almost all of them were associated with Porpoise. Cedar plugs and dark colored hootchies worked well, and I had a client bring down some cedar plug shapes made from clear acrylic with plenty of silver flash in them and they were amazing, caught so many Tuna on these things that they ended up releasing all the fish under 15 pounds and still limited out in 90 minutes. Of course with the action that hot and heavy mistakes were made. They were using light 30 pound leader and they ended up loosing all three lures when the leader chaffed through. They reported that almost 80% of the bites were on these three lures, guess I will have to get some of these!
DORADO: Dorado continued to be the mainstay of the charter fleet this week as both the offshore cruisers and the inshore fishermen were getting Dorado in the fish box. Most of the fish were off the beach between ½ mile and three miles on the Pacific side, but there were many of them caught on the Cortez side off the beach the same distance. My guess would be that 40% of the boats that got into Dorado managed to catch the legal limit of two fish per angler, the rest of the boats managed to get at least a few, even if they were not looking for them. None of the fish I saw were large with their weight running between 6 and 10 pounds with a few fish in the 15 pound category. Light colored lures and live bait were the key to the Dorado, and of course if you saw Frigate birds working it was either over Dorado (most common) or on Striped Marlin.
WAHOO: To tell the truth I did not see any wahoo this week, but did hear of some decent ones caught on the Cortez side of the Cape. Boats working the rocks in front of Gray Rock and the drop-off along the cliffs between Santa Maria and Chileano Bay as well as the 30 fathom line off of Palmilla were getting an occasional bite from fish that were reported to be as large as 45 pounds. There were a few smaller fish reported from the Pacific side but I am not sure which area they were found.
INSHORE: Sierra are still the fish of the week for the inshore fishermen as well as the surf fishermen tossing lures from the beach. The fish are mostly between 4 and 6 pounds with a few in the 10 pound class. The favorite areas have been off the de-sal plant just to the north of the lighthouse and the beach off of Playa Grande. A few boats are still running up to Migraino for the Sierra, getting lots of fish and then working three miles out for Marlin, Dorado and Tuna on the downhill return. Fishing for the Snapper in amongst the rocks has been an on-off experience with early in the week being “off” due to the slightly larger seas encountered. Perhaps the coming full moon will bring more fish in. If it does, please remember to limit your catch, don’t catch your limit. In the spring during the full moon the heavy concentrations of Snapper (and Grouper)you encounter are spawning aggregations, and while your crew may want to catch every fish they can, remember that it’s your charter and your call as when to stop.
FISH RECIPE: This week we did a spicy fish dish that I adapted from a recipe for General Tso’s Chicken. Start with 2 pounds of any boneless fish fillet and cube it into 1 ½ inch cubes. Marinate it for four hours in a mix of the white of 1 egg, a dash of salt and pepper, 1 teaspoon of minced fresh ginger (frozen will work if that’s all you have, just grate it instead of mincing it) and one teaspoon of corn starch. I put all the ingredients in a gallon zip-lock and shake it around for a few minutes then put the fish in and shake it again, then place it in the fridge. While it is marinating I made a sauce of 1 ½ tablespoon of soy sauce, 3 table spoons of sugar, 2 table spoons of rice-wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 tablespoon of hoisin sauce, 1 tablespoon of chicken broth and 1 tablespoon of sherry (I used tawny port instead). Once the fish has marinated put four or five cups of fresh oil in a large pot and heat it until its smoking, then dip in the fish pieces three or four at a time and cook for 1 minute, then remove to some paper towels to drain. Once all the fish is cooked take some of the oil and put it in a large skillet, then place about two tablespoons of minced ginger, one green onion white section thinly sliced, two minced garlic cloves and about three tablespoons of dried red chile flakes in the oil and saute for about 1 minute. Next add the sauce, then the fish and toss and stir until the fish is well coated. Serve this on a bed of freshly cooked rice! Just in case you don’t know, rice is simple. Boil 2 cups of lightly salted water. When it comes to a boil add 1 cup of rice and stir quickly. When it returns to a boil turn it down to a simmer and cover. Let simmer for 20 minutes then remove from the heat. After five minutes off the heat remove the lid and stir the rice, then replace the lid. Easy peasy.
NOTES: Fish, Sun, Dolphin, Whales, Beaches and Booze! Cabo San Lucas! Oh and since it’s Super Bowl Sunday, GO SEAHAWKS!!!!!
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