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Dora looms

Capt. Gary Graham
July 22, 2011
Baja Sur - Saltwater Fishing Report

Endless Season Update July 21, 2011
REPORT #1261 "Below the Border"
Saltwater Fly-Fishing reports since 1996

While Dora pounds its way north, most locals are cautiously looking over their shoulders.

http://www.allaboutbaja.com/webcams.html East Cape webcam for current live view
Summer action continues, however, with billfish dominating the catches as more and more anglers attention turns to the upcoming East Cape Offshore that begins next week. Hopefully it will not be a repeat of last week's Dorado Shootout when the target fish became scarce. Speaking of scarce, the cow-sized tuna are scattered in Las Palmas Bay with little or no concentration. Mark Rayor did manage to corral a couple, but he was the exception to the rule. Most of the fleet had to be content with the smaller football variety.
Inshore, the roosters and jacks are in the house…smaller versions only; the larger versions are not.

Current East Cape Weather http://tiny.cc/EastCapeWeather303
Magdalena Bay, Baja Mexico

Rumblings out of Magdalena indicate that there is a decent yellowtail bite on the ridge while locals are reporting dorado and striped marlin outside of Cabo Lazaro. This seems backwards to the way it should be in a normal year.
In the Esteros the action remains consistent for the usual suspects but since many locals are currently clamming, it is difficult to figure out how bad or how good it is.

Current Magdalena Bay Weather http://tiny.cc/MagBayWeather150
Zihuatanejo, Mainland Mexico
We are enjoying a great month! Francisco, on the super panga Huntress, fished three days in the nearby blue water and caught seven sailfish, dorado, lots of ocianicos (skipjack), and even yellowfin tuna. Plus, his clients from Denmark, Niels Theirs and his daughter, also fished the inshore for several days, catching numerous roosters and jack crevalle.

The roosterfish action is still blazing hot for us here in Ixtapa /Zihuatanejo. Early in the week, I had already been booked in advance by David Yoder of Seattle to fly fish for roosters when Henry Huskins of Houston, Texas called me the night before wanting to conventional gear fish for roosters. I called Adolfo and we put Henry with Cheva on the panga Dos Hermanos (Adolfo's boat), and because Cheva's boat, the Dos Hermanos II is more fly-fishing-friendly, David and I went with Adolfo on Cheva's boat.
The action was incredible. We fished the clean water south of Valentin and on down past the antennas. With Adolfo, we brought at least 12 roosters to the boat, and David caught and released one along with a medium-sized jack crevalle. This was David's first experience for roosters on the fly and he soon learned 12 roosters teased to the boat with a hookless teaser e 12 caught fish when you have hooks in the surface popper and a live bait to back it up. But that one fish on the fly is so much more rewarding when you do hook up, especially when using a fly you had tied yourself.
Meanwhile, Henry was with Cheva and had not handicapped himself with the fly rod. He released eight nice roosters.

Plus, when David went back with Adolfo the next day, with memories of those 50 pound and Fly Fishing World Record 70 pound class fish that had followed his fly, but did not eat it, he quickly got over his learning curve. On the first day the cast was sometimes a bit early, but usually a bit too late. By the second day he was able to get the timing down of having the fly hit the water just in front of the hookless surface teaser popper, and about 50 feet out. Did he do well? He got SIX roosters on the fly! I would say he is a veteran now….Ed Kunze

Current Zihuatanejo Weather http://tiny.cc/zihuatanejo582

Cabo San Lucas
Though there are still some to be found, the striped marlin bite has fallen off as we expect when the water gets over 80 degrees. I have not seen very many boats flying multiple flags, two at the most, and my guess is there is a success rate of about 35%. In addition, the fish have been scattered. Best results have been from the area of cool water on the Pacific side close to the beach. There have been more frequent attacks on lures from the larger marlin! Reports of blues up to 500 pounds taking yellowfin tuna as they are being reeled in gives you a reason to get out there, but they haven't arrived in any numbers…just an occasional fish or so. Smaller blue marlin and possibly a few black marlin have been reported attacking lures pulled around the tuna schools. Maybe it's time to down-rig a few tuna on the banks?

A bright star this week was the yellowfin tuna action. As is normal with these fish, first boats to the action had the best luck, and finding the fish for the most part consisted of finding porpoise. The yellowfin averaged 15 pounds and once in a while jumped over the 40 pound mark. I did hear reports of a few larger fish coming from the area outside of Punta Gorda, fish that went over the 100 pound mark. Almost anyone that wanted tuna this week were able to get a few, with some anglers limiting out. On a worry note: the purse seiners nave started to show up, but that means that there are more fish on the way, just hope they don't get them all before we have a chance at some!

Another bright spot this week was the number of dorado we have been seeing…an average of 12 pounds. There have been a few really small ones that bode well for the next few months as they get larger, and of course the 40 pound fish that get everyone all excited. The majority of the larger dorado are being found on the Cortez side in the warmer water and the smaller fish are being found close to the beach.

Inshore fishing was a repeat of last week with the inclusion of a few more dorado showing up… roosterfish to 60 pounds, amberjack, jack crevalle, bonito, grouper, snapper; all the inshore fish are showing in the reports this week. Slow trolling live bait is the key to getting most of the fish except the bottom species, and those were biting on butterfly jigs.…George and Mary Landrum

Current Cabo Weather http://tiny.cc/cabo191

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