Discover members know that the farther they go south, the fish more readily open their mouths.
Below the Border from the Bullring out to the Coronados, exotics are in short supply as the sea temperatures cool. Bluefin and dorado are becoming fading targets until next spring in this area. The kelp beds along the shore hold a few calico or sand bass from the Border down the west coast of Baja.
In Ensenada, it is “fill the cooler” time. Bottom fishing quickly becomes the dominating choice, according to recent reports. Although there are still some surface opportunities depending on the weather.
Remarkably, bluefin were landed offshore by the local panga fleet in San Quintín. The locals are uncertain how long they will be around, but they are optimistic if the weather holds. Meanwhile, inshore, bottom fish will remain an easy target depending on the weather.
On the Sea of Cortez side, the northern sector from Gonzaga down the east coast of Baja, fishing is already being impacted by the north winds, usually expected during the winter months.
Not so on the Pacific side at Bahía Asunción. Reports of spot-fin croaker, corbina, and halibut caught in the surf on plastics, Rapalas, and sand crabs. On the water inshore, easy limits of yellowtail (25 to 35 pounds, with a few pushing 40 pounds) and big, big calico. Yellows are on every rock in 100′ to 250′ of water with occasional breezers, and everything is coming in on iron or chunk bait!
Farther down the road at La Bocana, grouper, calico bass, and yellowtail are available if you work at finding them. The fishing is not wide open, but there are enough to give it a try if the weather is right.
Back in the Sea of Cortez at Loreto, fishing has been steady for a mix of small dorado, sierra, and roosterfish. Bottom fishing starts with good catches of reds and 8-pound firecrackers.
The two top fish by numbers would be what the locals focus on – sierra and triggerfish. They are easy and plentiful enough to fill the ice chest.
Lopez Mateos action has finally picked up. There are limits of wahoo outside plus striped marlin and dorado. In the Mangroves, black snook lead the charge with plenty of grouper and snapper for a fun day of fishing!
At La Paz, 5-pound dorado were the average, with limits or near limits most days. The fish eat live bait, dead bait, chunked bonito strips, and trolled feathers, but we are not sure how long. A few billfish were being hooked, and plenty of bonito, some jack crevalle, snapper, and cabrilla. However, cooler water fish like sierra, pompano, trevally, and rainbow runner are beginning to arrive.
At East Cape, striped marlin, sailfish, and nice-sized dorado are still in the counts as November rolls in. The big question: Will they last till Thanksgiving?
Puerto Los Cabos, the big news in this area is wahoo, as boats return with multiple catches on many days, with a few dorado and some yellowfin tuna rounding out the numbers caught.
At Cabo San Lucas, several giant tuna weighing in the triple digits are causing excitement! However, the dorado seems to be thinning out as the sea temperature cools.
Gary Graham That Baja Guy
Cellular (760) 522 3710
With more than five decades of fishing experience – from light tackle and fly to offshore billfish – Gary Graham has experienced all aspects of fishing in the Southern California and Baja waters. His observations of species behavior, tackle and techniques are always from his unique perspective, earning him the respect of his peers as well as anglers who eagerly follow his Baja reports and features.
Gary maintained a home at East Cape in Baja Sur for more than 18 years and still spends nearly half of each year exploring the entire peninsula in his self-contained Roadtrek van. He observes everything Baja, from the mysteries of a tide pool on a deserted Baja beach filled with tiny sea creatures to the largest billfish in the sea.