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Whale Invasion

Capt. Gary Graham
February 9, 2011
Baja Sur - Saltwater Fishing Report

Endless Season Update February 06, 2011
REPORT #1244 "Below the Border"
Saltwater Fly-Fishing reports since 1996
East Cape
The predominate north winds normally associated with Sea of Cortez this time of year continued to blow. Resulting in cooler water temperatures as well as jacket-inducing temps below 50 degrees several mornings.

Few anglers even ventured out of the few hotels that remained open. Kite boarders dominated the inshore water along the beach as the wind came whistling down the gulf.
Buenavista Beach and Resort Hotel reported more Yoga students than anglers. Seems as though Michelle Anderson, Victoria B.C., took advantage of the slow winter season to offer Yoga Instructor Classes. However there were a few anglers who ventured out and cashed in on the short-lived pargo and yellowtail snap that took place on a few of the reefs close to shore.

Even the locals who usually fish regardless of the wind were sitting on the beach cursing the relentless wind, and discussing among themselves when they might get back on the water.

Current East Cape Weather http://tiny.cc/EastCapeWeather303

Magdalena Bay, Baja Mexico

The whales being seen off the Southern California Coast recently have now begun to arrive in mass. Appears that all that was needed was the XVIII International Festival of the Gray Whale held in Puerto Adolfo Lopez Mateos held last weekend it the town.

Good thing too, Very few fishermen visited during January and with the current cooler weather it may be awhile before the trickle of fishing activity becomes a torrent.

Lance Peterson and his buddy Brad are planning a trip this upcoming week to sample the fishing both inside in the Esteros and offshore. I am sure Lance is hoping for a repeat of last year when he managed to add a grouper record to his growing list of records.

Current Magdalena Bay Weather http://tiny.cc/MagBayWeather150
Zihuatanejo, Mainland Mexico
The blue water current, for the predominately 80º water, is shifting so rapidly it is incredible. Yesterday (Wed.), fly fishing with John and Mary Hechk of Bozeman, Montana down at Puerto Vicente Guerrero, we found the clean water at 7.5 miles and exactly where the Terrafin Satellite photos said it would be. We got 4 strikes on sailfish between the 8.5 and 12.5 miles marks, and hooked two sailfish on the fly.
Today I went back with Gary Meger of Toronto, Canada and we went directly to the same areas as the previous day. The water was a warm 80º, but a dingy brown. It was not until the 20 mile mark we found the clean water. We only raised 2 sailfish all day, and nothing else. One followed the teaser to the boat, but had no interest in Gary's fly. Heading back to port, and in a matter of just a few hours, we had clean water almost to the beach…incredible.
Unfortunately, coming back a bit, and at the 15 mile mark, we came across a long line run out of a panga. The panga was from Zihuatanejo, with no name, but had a large dorado chasing bait painted on each side of the bow. I always use Jose Pino when fishing out of Puerto Vicente Guerrero, and when he saw the simbra (long line) and the panga, he was livid. We sat there for about 5 minutes talking to the illegal fishermen; and it wasn't for just pleasantries. Jose told them he has clients with him and can't do anything right now, but if they come back into his territory, he will have "other" people with him and will not be restricted.
This is what needs to be done in Mexico! Jose was not limited as the Zihuatanejo captains are; where the illegal fishermen are a cousin or a brother-in-law. He did not know them, but knew they were illegally killing sailfish, and his future. They got the message.
An interesting note is when we were only about ½ a mile off the point, we spotted two humpback whales. We shut the engine down and got the cameras ready. Just as the cameras were coming out of the bags, one of them went completely air-born about 150 feet away from the panga. It was truly awesome. While waiting for another, the second one breached further away and where we weren't looking. I got off a snap shot…but it is blurred.....Ed Kunze

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

Cabo San Lucas

We still have whales out there folks, as I stood on the first tee at Cabo Real yesterday I saw one just off the beach in full breach mode, she must have jumped and cleared the water at least 5 times, really awesome to watch.
Fishing is improving, however not up to the normal numbers we had become used too. A few boats have been getting bit by striped marlin this week, and some of them were able to release two a day, but most had a hard time finding any marlin at all, and if they did something would go wrong…a reel would freeze up, a line would break or the hook would get thrown. The best action was on live bait and the best area was the warm spots off of the lighthouse and on the 1150. Some fish were being seen elsewhere, but not in any numbers; the listed places supplied the best chance of getting hooked up.
Yellowfin tuna action continues to be a long run for most boats to get to the fish, with the best chances 30 miles or more to the southwest. Most of the fish there were in the 15 to 25 pound class but a few were over 100 pounds. The problem has been the water conditions. Getting that far out wasn't a problem, but coming home was a really rough ride, and the water conditions made it tough to find the porpoise that the tuna were associated with. There were small scattered schools elsewhere, mostly football sized fish, but still nothing consistent. As the water calms down, the fishing for yellowfin should improve.
I would pretty much give up on dorado for the next few months. If any are caught they will be stray fish, the water is just too darn cold to hold them!
Inshore the large swells made for uncomfortable inshore fishing, but at least there was some action taking place. While not there in great numbers, it was not uncommon for a boat to get a dozen or more sierra ranging from three to six pounds. Toss in an occasional yellowtail, a few bonito and once in a while an amberjack and the action was steady. The best action seemed to be on live sardina, and if you did not have any, the action became spotty. The large swells kept most of the boats from going any farther up the Pacific coast...…George and Mary Landrum

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

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