Ahh, August! Personally, one of my favorite months. Some complain that it’s too hot! I don’t disagree. However, fishing from the border to the tip of Baja right now is as good as it gets!
Imperial Beach Pier
The sand bass bite has really improved. Drive around looking for a big pile of bass on the sonar and then stop and chum lots of crushed sardine/anchovy mix, toss in a few live ones and add squid bits to the chum mix. Lime green plastic is the bomb on spawning sand bass with squid strips added.
Coronado Islands / Rockpile
Barracuda action is wide open in the lee of South Island. Some guys are saying they are getting them every cast, literally every cast! Yellowtail are mixed in, but the barracuda beat them to the bait or jig almost 100% of the time.
Yellows are also showing along the weather side of North Island from Pukey to the Keyhole, or Middle Islands area at the Gun Site, Middle Grounds, and at Ribbon Kelp.
Barracuda are showing best at the north end of South Island, Ribbon Kelp, Lighthouse Kelp, 5 Minute Kelp, South Kelp, and the Rockpile.
Calico bass are biting well around the boiler rocks in the Middle Islands area. Cast swimbait toward the rocks and retrieve them at a slow to medium speed. Set a tight drag, and be prepared to pull the fish out from the rocks.
On a side note… The Mexican Navy is back to checking boats, so be sure you have all your stuff in order before coming to the Islands. Keep everybody’s permits and IDs in ONE ziplock bag so you have it all ready to go when they ask. Quick and easy! They’ll let you go in just a couple of minutes.
Local fishing is excellent right now, with samples showing 8 to 15-pound yellowtail, lots of big 5 to 10-pound barracuda, and lots of large 8 to 15-pound bonito. They are all over the place – Salsipuedes, the lee of Todo Santos, Punta Banda, and just about anywhere else.
Local pangas dragging Rapalas and DTX minnows are loading up. Yellowtail/barracuda/bonito mixes are found as jumpers, under birds, and around anchovy bait balls. There are also yellows on kelp just to the west of the Island.
While the bluefin continues to be an item, inshore action for white seabass seems to have overshadowed them recently. Add some nice-sized calico bass, grouper, and halibut, which underscores summer’s arrival.
After a July to remember, with excellent surface and bottom fish action, August will surely deliver a hot Baja summer action for visitors and locals alike.
Bahía de Los Ángeles
Summertime heat underscores fishing as an ideal way to cool off. This group caught limits of red snapper, one nice gulf grouper, and a couple of yellowtail.
With some cool mornings at the fishing grounds south of the island, the busy season is on its way to becoming very successful. Catches have been varied, focusing mainly on yellowtail, halibut, sheepshead, and catch-and-release calico. Occasionally, a white seabass bite, along with some barracuda putting up a good fight before sending them back.
Magdalena Bay (López Mateos)
Left the dock at 5:40 am and ran out to Thetis Bank in the Parker. Got there at 7:40 am and had the first 10-kilo yellowfin tuna on board by 8 am. Fished for three more hours with the birds, seals, and jumping marlin. Had the limit of yellowfin tuna – seven at 10 kilos, eight at 5 to 7 kilos, and one pesky dorado. The water was 77.9 to 78 degrees.
All were caught on treble hook short pink lures. 1One was a Nomad diver for 8 meters, and the other was not a diver and had no brand or identifying marks on it.
Lots of fun. Wait all year for this time of great fishing in Lopez.
Cabo San Lucas
Swordfish, blue marlin, and gobs of striped marlin for the big-game hunters, as well as trophy-sized dorado, yellowfin tuna, and roosterfish closer to shore, are in store for visitors this month.
Puerto Los Cabos
The highlight is the bottom fishing for dogtooth snapper, leopard grouper, amberjack, and yellowtail. Some roosterfish are still along the shoreline, with a few over 40 pounds.
The Bisbee 24th Annual “East Cape Offshore” is expected to attract over 100 Teams worldwide to compete for cash prizes near to or over a million dollars for giant billfish with a minimum weight of 300 pounds.
Recent catches of trophy-sized dorado in 50-pound-class plus a 72-pound wahoo caught aboard the boat of Felipe Valdez, a member of the f Buenavista Hotel family, hosting the ECO event for the 24th year.
Dorado are still 90% of the catch! It seems they are everywhere, and it is impossible to get away from them, but they are a lot of fun. Also got bonito, pargo, snapper, cabrilla, jack crevalle, roosters, pompano, trevally, and triggerfish. Plus, there are some tuna outside.
Recently, the dorado has been overshadowed by an excellent roosterfish bite inside and striped marlin farther offshore.
Mulegé and Conception Bay
With trophy-sized dorado just outside the entrance to the bay, it’s a tin boat owner’s paradise with easy access to the Sea of Cortez! Great camping spots are offered on the beaches of Conception Bay in an ideal location.
That Baja Guy
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.