Baja – a grand place to celebrate your holiday season! November and December in Cabo? There are few places in the world as beautiful where families can celebrate the holidays and enjoy a wide variety of activities in a festive location. At the same time, family members who fish can spend their holidays catching exciting saltwater species. Not fond of fishing from boats? Remain on dry land for a guided trip on a remote beach for small-to-medium roosterfish, jack crevalle, sierra, and possibly a stray dorado.
If exploring local waters by boat is appealing, choices range from pangas (open outboard skiffs) to larger vessels – specially equipped sportfishing yachts that can be chartered at the various officea located on the Malecon surrounding the Harbor. Offshore, many of the same fish caught during peak season are still around – dorado, yellowfin, wahoo, skipjack, and bonito, along with a fascinating array of bottom fish (depending on conditions) – including grouper, cabrilla, pargo, and yellowtail. In addition, billfish, striped marlin, and sailfish wait for the angler wishing to tick their personal ‘catch and release’ billfish box.
Twenty or so, miles north is San Jose del Cabo, the Marina offers a fleet of pangas and cruisers to access the world-famous Gordo Banks, where giant black marlin and yellowfin tuna lurk, plus many of the species mentioned above.Then moving farther up into the Sea of Cortez to the East Cape, surrounding the towns of La Ribera and Los Barriles, accommodations from lodges to 5-star hotels offer fleets with pangas and cruisers for full or half-day fishing trips. During the November/December months, the North Winds can be a factor along the Sea of Cortez coastline. Although intermittent, when they back off, fishing can be productive for sierra, jacks, ladyfish, or bonito, or if bottom fishing, cabrilla, and pargo.By January, the kiteboarders and windsurfers will be enjoying the weather at East Cape, even if it’s not great for fishing.At Las Arenas/Muertos Bay, the north wind is not as large a factor because of the natural protection of the peninsula. Therefore, depending on sea temps, the fishing here can be exceptional. The fleet consists of pangas, and on milder days, they offer wahoo and yellowfin offshore at the island. The boats stay inshore for dorado, cabrilla, snapper, bonito, and jack crevalle on rougher days.At La Paz, the fishing activity is in La Paz Bay or around Isla Espirito Santo. The north winds can hamper the fishing, though early morning until late-morning can be great for sierra, small jacks, bonito, and perhaps small dorado. And around the Isla, cabrilla, triggerfish, pompano, or maybe yellowtail
The late fall season in Loreto should be one of the best in a decade. All summer long, anglers have been catching the larger 60-pound-dorado frequently, just as it used to be in the old days. Plus, now is the prime season for the yellowtail that are known for their stubbornness and strength.Our final spot is Loreto. Try fishing along the shoreline or around the islands of Loreto Bay National Marine Park. A favorite fishing spot is off the tip of Carmen Island from the “Lobo” out to the area known as the “50,” where a string of boulders often holds yellowtail up to 25 pounds as well as grouper. Anglers often use live mackerel, circle hooks on long leaders, and enough weight to deal with the current when fishing these waters. Iron lures in the old standby “blue and white” color are a good choice. Snapper, pinto, and triggerfish are in most catches. It is enough fun to be memorable!While Thanksgiving is more of a traditional U.S. holiday, almost any hotel or restaurant in Baja will recognize a traditional Thanksgiving.On the other hand, Christmas in Baja Sur is a huge deal that will probably exceed anything your family has experienced. Plus, there will be time to wet a line and tick a few boxes on your catch list.Happy Holidays