Monthly Fishing Report by Gary Graham
Welcome to Los Cabos! The sportfishing, along with our spring-like weather, are world famous and this month allows them both to show strut their “stuff”. While late winter storms raged throughout the U. S., our daytime temperatures averaged somewhere in the mid- to high-70s.
There are numerous catches to pursue this month – whether trophy, personal best or bucket list – the desired species can often be located just a few miles outside of the IGY Marina. Whether one favors quantity or quality, many days the goal can be achieved close enough for the luxury hotels dotting Land’s End to be clearly visible.
The variety is stunning. Roosterfish are often spotted on the surface following their next meal and when successful, joining in the feeding frenzy are several different species in the jack family including pompano, yellowfin tuna, skipjack, bonito, as well as the toothy sierra mackerel and other fish that travel in packs.
When fishing for these predators, live bait – caballito, mackerel or sardina – all work as well as do the many different lures trolled or even cast-and-retrieved rapidly when the fish are gorging on the surface. The sierra is an essential ingredient for the fresh ceviche that most restaurants are willing to prepare.
Another early-April option is bottom fishing around some of the pinnacles that jut up toward the surface, many several hundred feet from the bottom below. Just a handful of miles to the north, on the Pacific side below Cabo Falso, the pinnacles are easy to spot in the waters below the famous lighthouse.
This is where a host of species can be found, tough as the terrain they call home. Assorted rockfish, snapper, grouper, yellowtail, and amberjack are just some of the fish you can expect to catch. Just understand, they are all big and tough competitors that won’t come to the boat without an epic fight.
Farther offshore are many different banks where billfish, larger tuna, wahoo and dorado can be found. However, so far this month, the conditions haven’t been quite right and unless an angler is into long boat rides, the inshore fishery offers more variety and volume.
If you’re looking for a “big, bad, rough and tough” challenge, heading left out of the marina up towards the Gordo Banks is the best choice; this is where the larger yellowfin tuna lurk. Recent reports are of 20- to 50-pounders, as well as an occasional 100-pounder being caught. Plus, there is always a chance for a wahoo, one of the fastest swimming fish in the ocean and a popular favorite at the table. Although it’s a 20-mile boat ride, there are almost always a few whales, porpoise schools and other marine wildlife to view along the way.
Farther up into the Sea of Cortez near East Cape and La Paz, seasonal north winds can be a nuisance this time of year. Many days they prevent the local fleet from being able to leave the dock; however, when the winds back off, boats have been returning with flags fluttering from their outriggers, signifying catches and in some cases, catch and releases of billfish, tuna, and wahoo as well as a few dorado.
One other option available at both East Cape and Cabo San Lucas is a guided trip fishing from shore with spin or fly tackle. Catches can be impressive, as demonstrated by Stephen Jansen, local tackle shop owner and guide, who caught a chunky African pompano from the shore.