Pisces Fish Report March 1 – 7, 2024

Overall Catch Success Rate, All Species Combined 95.45%

Billfish Catch Success Rate, Billfish, 59.09%% Dorado 45.45% Tuna 33.33% Other Species 28.79%

As the week began, it had the characteristics of preceding weeks with cookie-cutter weather and similar sea temperatures. According to the Captain and crew reports, the banks that had been holding good-sized schools of striped marlin. They seemed to have lost their allure (primarily baitfish) that had accounted for the stripers’ presence in the various areas in prior weeks.

The double-digit scores of billfish releases that some of the fleet had posted during the past two months were no longer the norm. The striped marlin, sailfish, and dorado were still around – just not in the volume that the crews had grown accustomed to; however, our crews were resourceful and patient.

“TRACY ANN,” a 31’ Bertram, with Captain Julio Castro and Mate Tracy Ann Raul Leal took their anglers to the Cerrito Del Golden Bank where they caught and released not one, but two striped marlin estimated to weigh 100 and 140 pounds that they hooked on caballitos. When the billfish action quieted down, they changed to lighter tackle and caught 15 toothy and scrappy Sierra, considered a delicacy for Ceviche (raw fish).  Charles McGee and Laura from Giroir, Texas, could not hide their excitement as they shared their day’s story later.

Captain Abel and Mate Ninja took their clients, David Green and Zachary Heffernan, from Fair Oaks Ranch in Texas, aboard the “RIPPER” a 35’ Cabo Flybridge, to the La Brecha Bank which had been very productive for billfish in late February.

Sure enough, the baitfish had returnedas confirmed by the various sea birdsfilling the sky overhead with their noisy chatter as they searched for a meal.

Upon spotting the sea birds on the bait, Mate Ninja flew off the bridge to the cockpit to rig fresh dead Ballyhoo on the bait rods, and he dropped them back several boat links into the wake as the Captain slowed the boat down to trolling speed.

It didn’t take long before a striper, with its dorsal fin and half its tailfin exposed, appeared behind one of the skipping Ballyhoo.  The rod bent, the clicker wailed, and the fight was on for the first billfish of the day for the guys. Thirty minutes later, the anglers removed the hook from the 100+ pound striped marlin and it swam away.

The morning flew by and before lunchtime, the two anglers had caught and released three marlin plus two dorado that weighed 18 and 25 pounds when landed.

In addition, there were a couple of skipjacks to add to the catch list for the day. “Just another day in paradise,” they agreed.

Throughout the rest of the week variety dominated the trips. Whatever seemed more attractive than riding around for hours trying to make something bite that wasn’t in the mood.

 If the stripers or sailfish wouldn’t cooperate, how about a dorado? Or a yellowfin tuna? Roosterfish, yellowtail, silky shark, Sierra, skipjack, ladyfish, cabrilla, pargo, or grouper?

The bountiful waters surrounding Lands’ End offer extraordinary opportunities to add to one’s personal lifetime catch list, which is always a fun project.

The last week of March, 2023, Cory and Lana Pardon and Scott Wolf from Minot, North Dakota, enjoyed a hectic day releasing 30 roosterfish — from 5 to 8 pounds — on cuchi at Margaritas. They also encountered a jack crevalle, pound-for-pound one of the toughest fighters found in Baja. …Gary Graham

Cory and Lana Pardon, Minot, North Dakota, returned this last week and had another equally exciting trip on “TRACY ANN,” a 31’ Bertram with Captain Julio Castro and Mate Tracy Ann Raul Leal.

They caught: (and released) one striped marlin weighing around 100 pounds, on caballito at Pozo Cota; one dorado weighing seven pounds on cuchi at Orilla del Golden; 25 Sierra from three to four pounds on cuchi also at Orilla del Golden.

On the “BILL COLLECTOR II,” a 35’ Cabo Flybridge, Captain Juan Carlos Lopez who originally hailed from Acapulco, has been fishing our area for 18 years. He loves to fish for marlin as well as other species. His largest fish to date is an 800-pound black marlin. Captain Lopez fine-tuned his extensive knowledge in Guatemala, Panama and Costa Rica. Assisted by Mate Martinez, the Captain helped Parker Gladwell, Preston Gladwell, Tim Gladwell, Leazeth Gladwell, Colton Gladwell catch the following:

Four striped marlin, weighing from 90 to 130 pounds which they released on Ballyhoo at the Los Arcos Bank,
one dorado weighing 18 pounds also on Ballyhoo at Rancho San Lucas, and two skipjack at 10 pounds on lures at Los Arcos.

“RUTHLESS,” a 31ft’ Bertram with Captain  Beto Lira at the helm and Mate Chuy Romero in the cockpit took Braden Swank, Brenner Bushfield, Jackson Willems, James Ochs, John Mears, Michael Palandri, all from Billings,  Montana, to the Pozo Coto Bank where they caught and released two striped marlin weighing around 100 to 120 pounds oncocinero and a purple lure, and they caught three dorado in the 10 t0 12 pound range on Ballyhoo and lures at the same bank.

“HOT ROD,” a 42’ Cabo Flybridge with Captain Erick Orozco and Mate Hot Rod Jose Ramiro Ramirez, released two striped marlin weighing 110 to 150 pounds on caballito at the Cerro Golden/La Brecha, and caught one dorado at 20 pounds on cocinero at La Antenna. And, they caught four skipjack on caballito at La Brecha.

Captain Carmelo and Mates Omar and David, on the“SEA SEÑORA,” a 42’ Post Sport Fisher, carried Blake Strozdas, Christopher Josephina,  Colin O`Connor, Jason Pfeiffer, Jeff Music, Jill and Jody Keeling, California, to the Cerro del Golden where they released two striped marlin weighing approximately 110 to 120 pounds using caballito for bait.

On the 31’ Bertram, “TIBURON,” Captain Rosendo Gomez and Mate Carlos Santos with guests Gibbons Cornwell and Jeff Hamlin, from Vaughn, Montana, traveled to the Los Arcos area for two released 90-100-pound striped marlin which they took on cocinero, a dorado weighing ten pounds taken on Ballyhoo, and three, three to four-pound skipjack taken on lures.

” KNOT WORKIN,” a 35’ Cabo Flybridge with Captain Israel and Mate Abraham and anglers Alex Mallinas, Alicia Naples, Anthony Naples, David Naples, Julie Naples, Scott Naples,  Tony Naples all from Florida, released one striped marlin weighing approximately 110 to 120 pounds on cocinero at Rancho San Lucas.

“VALERIE” 35ft Bertram Captain Robert Sandez. Mate Salvador Flores drove to La Antenna where they took the following for their clients: One striped marlin weighing around 100 to 120 pounds taken on cocinero at  La Antenna and one dorado about  15 pounds  taken on Ballyhoo at Cerro del Golden,
46 Sierra up to four pounds on cuchi at Cerro del Golden, all caught by Juan Manuel Miranda, Kian Bentton, Noy Kucuk, Rick Walsh, from Cleveland, Ohio.

Photo “TIBURON” 31’ Bertram, Captain Rosendo Gomez and Mate Carlos Santos, along with their fisherman, Gibbons Cornwell from Vaughn, Montana, released one striped marlin, weighing 90 pounds, taken on cocinero at Los Arcos and one dorado about 8 pounds on Ballyhoo on Margaritas Bank. 

Regardless of the species targeted, our crews and clients agreed that the weather cooperated, and most boats returned to the Los Cabos marina with flags flapping from the outriggers and smiles on their faces. 

WEATHER CONDITIONS: Overall calm seas, moderate winds on some days tapering off by midday – between 6 and 10 kts.

AVERAGE WATER TEMP: 71-72

BEST LURES: Mackerel, Ballyhoo and Cocinera, Cedar Plugs. and marlin lures.