Think Puerto Vallarta, Big Black Marlin, Sailfish & Dorado

              Think Puerto Vallarta, Big Black Marlin, Sailfish & Dorado

    Wriitten by: Stan Gabruk owner of Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle

You know I wait all year long to write my best articles about Puerto Vallarta’s World Class Fishing so this report is a real treat for me. We are seeing some of the best fishing of the year with no signs of things changing as we’re smack in the middle of tournament season! Superior Conditions, with moderating air temperatures as we move deeper into fall makes for comfortable days with fish the size of your car. These are the “Bucket List” days. Come join us for the time of your life!

Big Marlin anywhere past El Morro to Corbetena. Tournament Season is here amigos!

El Banco aka The Bank has shown some signs of life, some smaller Tuna and one big one was boated the other day. Some Black and Blue Marlin but the problem is not too many bait fish in the form of Skippies (aka Skip Jack Tuna). Blue Water, Smooth seas, conditions are favorable. Corbetena has seen more action and is more reliable, but it’s time El Banco got a pulse again. Stay tuned, they’re always bigger at The Bank, if they’re there!

Nice Sized Dorado in the bay!

Corbetena continues to be the place to be. Big Black and Blue Marlin running on average at 500 plus lbs are picking up in numbers and they’re here to party! The good news about Marlin is they’re all spread out so anything, anywhere is possible. They seem to be more abundant at the Rock, but anywhere from El Morro / Marietta Islands out are fertile territory amigos. One secret, run dead baits for Marlin. Skip Jack Tuna are the bait of choice right now for most species, lures are working as well, but if you come across schools of Skippies go ahead and fill the Tuna Tubes. This will almost guarantee a “screaming reel Marlin Party”! Dorado running 20 to over 60 lbs are more abundant by the day, which is saying something from last week! Sailfish are getting thicker also and they’re anywhere from 7 to 9 feet long! Yellowfin Tuna are a little disappointing this week running mostly in the 40 to 80 lb range (I’ve seen picture of some at 200 lbs as luck is a factor). But they’re taking baits and ready to take your presentation! So you have the idea, this is where you want to be and the sooner the better. Days like this you can’t go wrong. There have been two inch flying fish everywhere as bait. Krill shrimp are tasty for Dorado, Sails and Tuna so be prepared with Hoochies and related rigs.

The Marietta Islands are still in “neutral” and I have no explanation. If you’re a touch north of here the Point at Punta Mita have seen Sailfish and 30 lb Dorado spread through the area. Find a clump of debris and you’re hit the Dorado Jackpot. Just 7 miles or so off the point on a 310 heading you will find Sailfish and yes, more Black and Blue Marlin! Eight hours and longer are producing at least three strikes a day. We’ll put you on fish, it’s up to you to boat it! Around El Morro there are Skippies, so this area is drawing in larger fish. Black and Blue Marlin are roaming the area so a shorter day could produce nicely if you’ve got any luck at all. The trick here is to ride the current. That means the fish will surf this current, being pushed and this is where the bait is. So get in the current, not crossing it and you’ll see the difference. Locals worth their “salt” know this, experience pays.

Yellowfin Tuna at Corbetena looking for a fast “bite”…

Inside the bay it’s reliable, affordable and fun! There are 10 to 20 lb Football Tuna around Yelapa and can be larger. Dorado in front of the Los Arcos Rocks in the 20 lb range. Sailfish are chasing Skippies in the bay as are some freak smaller Marlin around 300 lbs. Bonito are a stable and in the 30 lb range and great tasting. More Needle fish seem to be in the area, but not really catching many for now. For now even a super cheap four hour trip will pay off in sore arms and face hurting grins. You can’t go wrong fishing anywhere in PV these days.

The bite has been inching it’s way earlier and earlier so be ready to go early and be at your chosen fishing grounds by eight-ish in the morning. Water temperatures jumped five whole degrees to 88, not causing any issues though. Blue water and clear skies as we exit the rainy season. Live bait is working for some species, but Marlin are preferring dead baits as some Sails will take lure and dead bait before live bait, go figure. Lures of blue and white, purple Petroleros, iguanas that mimic Dorado are also working well. Flying fish are only two inches long, but they’re out there in the Billions! Some days can be more difficult than others, these fish have plenty to eat and they’re not shy about it. The fish are there, the challenge it to find the correct bait for the day, so bring your bag of tricks and good luck.

My New Location on the Malicon next door to Sr. Frogs at the south end of the Boardwalk behind the small Light House…

Remember to visit our new location on the Malecon or boardwalk on Morelos right at El Faro or the light house (next to Sr.Frogs). And don’t forget about our Marina Vallarta Store as well! Benjamin can fix you up with Tours if you’re looking to do something other than fishing as well.

Marina Vallarta Location and Yes, We’re still alive, still in business and anyone that says different is a liar looking to steal my clients! Don’t be fooled and know you know exactly where to find us! On the Boardwalk / Malecon, south end…

The Marina Store Location is still at the end of Marina Vallarta between Docks A & B. It is being said by my competition that Master Baiters, the guy who owns it is Dead. I am happy to say I am still alive and kicking, but obviously my so called “competition” is scared to death you’ll talk with me and then they’ll be a forgotten thought. We’ve been fishing here in PV for 17 years and counting. We’re the oldest fishing company in Puerto Vallarta so don’t believe them. If asking where we are, mention you want top purchase a t-shirt, they seem to let that go…. it’s a mexican joke I live with daily!

Until next week, Don´t forget to kiss Your Fish!

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The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property of Stan Gabruk.

Long Liners Retreat, Fishing is Incredible, Wahoo!

Written by: Stan Gabruk owner of Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle

01 11 2016 Striped marlin on Mamasita 8 hrs, Punta Mita, 500 pxls MBTextWhat a difference a week can make and this week we´re seeing what we probably shouldn´t be, thank El Nino for this amigos! Sailfish, you bet, Marlin are all over our world famous fishing grounds. Dorado increased in size and abundance, Wahoo return, Football Tuna all over the deep water fishing grounds of Corbeteña and El Banco. The bay is boiling with action and frankly if you show up,  you´ll catch fish. Short days smaller gamefish, longer days, more expensive I might add, bigger fish. Summer fishing in High Season, YeHa!

01 12 2016 Dorado, Mamasita, 8 hrs 500 pxls MBTextWith high visibility blue water just four miles of the Punta Mita Point, we have a list of species that is definitely impressive, especially since we´re seeing summer species on a Winter Calendar! Punta Mita, El Morro, and the Marietta Islands are all finally working. El Morro: Dorado and Wahoo are around the area. Remember Wahoo have a razor mouth so you need to run wire leader if targeting this non-schooling fish. Sailfish a real possibility around El Morro. Punta Mita is Dorado city and you can pretty much count on two per trip right now. Head out a little farther towards El Banco and you have a good shot at Striped Marlin. Now when Stripers show up we normally consider then an end of the summer fishing season indicator. Not this year, with water temperatures in the 79 to 80 degree mark we don´t expect things to change quickly. With California getting hit with cold weather storms we´re seen a push of these warm water species south to our corner of the fishing world! Marietta Islands, you are seeing smaller Rooster fish in the 15 lb range, small I know, but don´t be surprised if your forearms get crampy fighting these demon fish. Skip Jack Tuna, Bonito 25 to 40 lbs, Sierra Mackerals, Larger Needle fish to 45 lbs and the list goes on. Get in the area, catch fish, it´s just that simple!

01 18 2016 Naven Gidwani, Sailfish at Los Arcos, Nofa, 4hrs 600 pxls MBTextCorbeteña and all areas in between, emphasize all areas and you´ll be at the right place. Huge area you may say and you´d be right. Starting with Corbeteña Marlin or the Blue or Black variety are running anywhere from 350 to 700 lbs with the average being around 500 lbs, not a small fish! Yellowfin Tuna are in the football range of 40 to 60 lbs, not Monsters but we´ll be happy with what we´re seeing in late January! Dorado anywhere from 35 to 50 lbs and they´re picking up in numbers, go figure. Sailfish of course and Cubera Snappers in the 55 lb range for you Jiggers! Sometimes they´ll take trolled bait, so be ready. Plenty of bullet Bonitos around, favorite bait. Flying fish everywhere, Goggle eyes and who knows what else. Ditto this for El Banco and for those with the fuel, the area almost exactly in the middle has deep channels and spikes to check out so put those expensive electronic to the test. Oh, the Bottle Nose Dolphin have moved on for the most part, so the rock is happening!!

Inside the bay is a fisherman’s wonderland and I haven´t said anything close to that for some time. Down between Yelapa and Los Arcos you´ll find Dorado in the 30 to 40 lb range, nice sized Sailfish in the 75 to 90 lb range, average sized I guess you ´d say. Jack Crevalls 35+ lbs near Nuevo Vallarta with more Sails in the area. Needle fish are weird looking but great tasting with some nice action. Skip Jack Tuna, Bonito to 30 lbs, Sierra Mackerals everywhere to 15 lbs. Plenty of bait, the water if beautiful, we´re finally firing on all eight cylinders.

01 14 2016 Dorado on Mamasita, 8 hrs, 500 pxls MBTextThe bite: is happening around 8:00 a.m so get out early. Water temps are around 80 degrees, but a little cooler in the bay. Plenty of bait in the form of Goggle Eyes, Flying fish, Bullet Bonito and Skippies. Plenty of Bonito for Chorras (a basic term for bait sized fish under 35 lbs normally). Lures: Petrelaros of course with purple and black and pink lures with blue skirts and black dots are a good choice to start with. Remember always run one lure, the Wahoo are hitting these colors as well, good luck amigos!

Shared boats for 8 hrs targeting Dorado has been very popular! Just fire me an email so I know when you´ll be here and we´ll do the rest. The Downtown Store on Basidillo Badillo and Insurgentes is open for High Season. Call Chris (El Centro Mgr) at (044) 322 112 9558 for fishing, tours or T-shrts amigo.  I am still in Marina Vallarta so take your pick. YeHa!

Until next time, don´t forget to ¨Kiss Your Fish¨. . .

Corporate Logo RedPix 650 AdjustedMaster Baiter´s is located in Marina Vallarta between docks A and B on the boardwalk. Email your Questions to me at:  Web page:  , Local Phone at: (044) 322 779 75 71 or if roaming: 011 52 1 322 779 75 71 cell phone direct. Come like me on Facebook:

The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property of Stan Gabruk.


It´s Sailfish City, Marlin Teasing, Cubera Snappers Deliver

It´s Sailfish City, Marlin Teasing, Cubera Snappers Deliver

Written by: Stan Gabruk owner of Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle

08 08 2014 Fishermans Fantasy Diving Birds Bait Ball

It´s morning, the sun just came up, the air is fresh and the sky is clear in Marina Vallarta. Tourism at this time of the year consist mostly of Mexican Nationals on family vacations from Guadalajara, Tepic, Monterey and everywhere else in Mexico. Yes it´s warm, humid also, but undeniably beautiful. In this warmest of seasons here in Puerto Vallarta we see World Class Gamefish come into the area and feast on the abundant bait. August is when things start to happen, for now Black and Blue Marlin are picking up in numbers. Yellowfin Tuna at El Banco or Corbeteña are in the smaller size varieties, but the Tres Maria Islands are just boiling with 200 lb Yellowfin Tuna. Sailfish are still the main species being targeted, but who can complain about Marlin and Sailfish. The fishing is still great and getting better by the day for the visiting Angler, Professional and amateur alike, Fishing High Season is Here!


As we move deeper into Summer the conditions still could not be better. Outside the bay the blue water is clear and just beautiful. A deeper blue than the Caribbean, the visibility is amazing. Bait is everywhere and varied in species. Bullet Bonito, YF Tunas favorite bait is all around the point of Punta Mita and in the bay. Flying fish in the four inch length are all around the reefs and the Marietta Islands. Goggle eyes, Chorras (bonito, small tunas) are boiling all over the place. Once again it´s a bait smorgasbord, all you can eat for fish. Sounds like a good thing right, well the down side is there should be more fish here than there are. Maybe this is just my impatience, it is still a little early in the Big Game Fishing season, it´s like Christmas and the presents aren´t under the tree yet, but you know they´re coming.



El Banco and Corbeteña: There are still Black and Blue Marlin anywhere between the Rock, aka Corbeteña and El Banco to just off the Marietta Islands. Fertile fishing grouns that many ignore and forget about. The numbers of Marlin are down a little, many taking long looks at your presentation and ultimately just giving it a long look. Others are taking baits, but if you´re targeting Marlin, two strikes a day seem to be the average on a ten hour day, for Marlin that is. The Marlin are still between 300 and 450 lbs with larger ones out there being spotted and lost. Sailfish are here as you would expect they´re also a little fickle on the bait now with the abundance I can understand. Cubera Snappers are still biting. Using the ¨wounded bait¨ trick where you cut a Chorra in half and just drop it over the side, as it sinks Cubera will come out of their holes and attack that bait. When Cubera’s are running 70 lbs, they´re another ignored species except to the locals who know how good tasting these fish are! Rainbow runners are at both the locations running over 20 lbs, but these can hit 50 lbs, just depends. If you´re looking for Marlin with a side of Sailfish, then these two locations are worth the expense and the time.  08 05 2014 Herbert  Harmon RedPix 600 75 lb Cubera Snapper, Corbeteña

The Marietta Islands and El Morro have slowed down with the Sailfish moving out farther these last couple of days. We have to remember that fish move, then they come back. So no big thing, wait a few minutes and they´ll be back. We´re seeing Needle fish in the 35 lb range, Bonito and Skip jack Tuna in the same size range. Dorado are absent without leave (AWOL), but this can change in twenty minutes. If you can find a log or some floating Whale, or just a pile of debris bunched up, there are always Dorado in these situations. For now you´re better off heading out to the point of Punta De Mita…

Sailfish Family 2014

Speaking of Punta De Mita, Sailfish and Marlin are twenty miles off the point. Two weeks ago they were five miles, again fish move. Find a buoy and you´ll find Dorado about 25 lbs, same size, same story as last week. You can go for ten hours and get the same fish at Corbeteña or take an eight hour trip and target the same fish here. To me this is the fishing value once again for the Big Game Fishing fanatic. But don´t think you´ll just arrive and these fish are just counting the moments for your bait to magically appear before their hungry little bills. You want to make sure you have plenty of lures, since they´ve been working as well as live bait at times.

Inside the bay, it´s strangely active. No trash line due to a lack of rain. We´re having a weird year rain wise and we only have a trash line when the rains cooperate. Besides cooling down the evenings, the rain washes this organic trail mix into the bay that smaller and frankly larger fish like to feed on. We have so many rivers emptying into the Bay of Banderas that there are several trash lines and you can spin the bay looking for the best one. But for now, I´d just target the local species like Jack Crevalls (35 lbs) which are a winter species, still can´t figure this one out. Bonito to 30 lbs everywhere, Skip Jack Tuna to 45 lbs off Yelapa, Rumors of Dorado in the 25 lb range around Los Animas the tourist area. Sierra Mackerals are also hanging out in the 20 lb range. Sailfish have been boated around La Cruz Marina near the point. Snook at River Mouth 2 Needle fish, and there are always other species just moving around. Snook at the river mouths are an ignored species with white meat, great tasting and frankly a local favorite. You don´t need to troll around the whole bay, just pick a species and head to the location. The sweet water or Agua Dulce as the locals call it is where the river fresh water and salt water mix. It´s the pipeline for this Fish Trail Mix and they like being the first in line. The Equivalent of my ex-wife being the first person in line for a Nordstroms Sale with an untapped credit line! So don´t just focus on the ¨movie star¨ species, the ¨stand- ins¨ can be ¨stars¨ also. Four hours will put you on fish, so if the budget is short, we can still make sure you´re catching fish and dinner too!

The Bite: With the evenings being over cast, the full moon is having less of an impact on the bite. For now just make sure you´re on the water early and see what happens. Focus on the hours between 7a.m. and 2 p.m. Water conditions: Water temps are still in the low 90´s, kinda warm, too warm for some species. If targeting Yellowfin Tuna, at El Banco or Corbeteña make sure the boat you´re on has down riggers or you´ll never get a bait in front of a Tuna. Sounders can show were your temperature breaks are so you know how deep to set the down rigger. Frankly I wouldn´t target Tuna on a boat without a Down Rigger amigo, why would you knowing what you know now?  Remember the better equipped boats will always have an edge. Money talks and if you don´t have the correct lure or bait combination, then you don´t catch fish, which is hard enough anyway. Or you´re just paying for excuses. Lures: Same as last week, Petrelaros of brown and purple color of about six inches. Diamond Jigs and Rapallas around the shallows or Trash Lines. Brown and purple combinations are working, but mix it up a bit when you´re running lures.

Tres Maria Islands: For the guy that absolutely, positively, has to have a Yellowfin Tuna, well they´re at the Tres Maria Islands and they´re thick as ants. You know, I’m like the guy who wants everyone to catch fish, but at what cost. You can head out more than a hundred miles, spend the majority of the time traveling to this Fishery (Breeding grounds) just to get chased by the authorities. The local companies raking in money don´t tell you anything inside what they call the ¨buffer zone¨ is poaching, it´s illegal plain and simple. Now is it poaching if nobody is enforcing the laws anyway? I don´t know what to say, maybe we should ask an Elephant how he feels about being poached as people still want Elephant products no matter how short the supply of Elephants are. So I feel like I`m watching these so called fishing companies put themselves out of business making you think ¨it´s all ok amigo¨. Well if you´re inside the buffer zone, and you´ll have to be inside the buffer zone to catch 200 lb Yellowfin tuna because they´re not twelve miles away from the structure. Another thing is the Tres Maria Islands are a prison, the larger island. So the authorities don’t want fishing boats close in. Fishing happens within two to six miles normally to the islands, same distance to the prisoners. They jump off the islands from time to time and imagine if there´s a fishing boat in the area?! Let your imagination run a while with thatone, say good bye to your vacation and a bunch of money. You want the same situation as the marine being held in a Tijuana Jail now for months for something insignificant? Yellowfin Tuna just a few short years ago used to be abundant around Corbeteña and El Banco has become a thing of the past. Now the local poachers charging for three day trips are just raping the resource. So yes there are Monster Yellowfin Tuna at the Tres Maria Islands. I just feel a social responsibility as a ´SPORTSMAN´ not to make a bad situation worse. What you don´t hear about is how the Navy, police or the enforcers are chasing private boats trying to bring them in and this is something you do not want and won´t hear about through the promotional media sites as they show poachers standing next to three hundred pound Yellowfin Tuna. Fishing boats are a prime trophy that they don´t have to return. If you head to the Tres Maria Islands and you keep outside the legal boundaries, more power to you, but you won´t catch fish this far from the islands and structure, period. Everyone knows this, but the pictures shown by these famous reel companies and fishing sites are no better than poachers going after Elephants.. Most people aren´t told it´s illegal to fish this area since their agenda is making money at the futures expense. Remember this Fishery is nothing new, but the trips to this area are. The old timers know you don´t kill the future for quick profits. If the truth be known, there have been many, many incidents where captains are held for days upon days in the general population as the clients had to find a way back. I can tell you of incidents where boat owners who live in Canada are chased all the time pushing the envelope. There are tons of stories about bribes and close calls. Sooner or later there will be something serious happen, do you want to volunteer to be there when it all comes down? It´s not fun if it´s not legal or safe! I don´t want to be Mr. Negative, but this is just ridiculous.  

Until next time don’t forget to kiss your fish and remember at Master Baiter’s Sportfishing & Tackle “ We Won’t Jerk You Around”!

Master Baiter´s has changed locations in Marina Vallarta between docks A and B on the boardwalk. Email your Questions to me at:  Web page: , Local Phone at: (044) 322 779 75 71 or if roaming: 011 52 1 322 779 75 71 cell phone direct Facebook: The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property of Stan Gabruk.