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Marina Vallarta Las Palmas I Local 3

As I’ve been saying all along, this is an El Nino year and we’ll have to wait and see what Mother Nature dishes out to us. For the last couple of weeks the fishing has been “fair”, but that’s reversed itself and we’re seeing warmer water than we like and a lack of bait in our deep water fishing grounds. I’m sure you can see the direction this report is going. I look forward all year to write incredible and exciting fishing reports, but I’m reminded by the present conditions, that maybe I’m putting the “Cart before the horse”. Having said that, it’s not a “doom and gloom” scenario by any means. But for now if you’re targeting Marlin at the deep water fishing grounds of Corbetena and El Banco, you’ll need “bait insurance” in the form of tuna tubes!

The tourism has been slow at best. With warm weather, high humidity and a lack of people heading out fishing, North Americans I should say. For the most part the Mexican Nationals don’t head out fishing for these long distance, long duration day trips. So I’m depending on the mostly private boats and their crews for information other than what my boats provide. Being connected to all the old school Captains and now their sons and daughters, I have a wide range of information providers. But right now there isn’t much information to share. The deep water locations of Corbetena and El Banco have seen better days. You may ask the obvious question: Why? Since Marlin and the like don’t exactly grant “interviews”, it means we have to make our best guesses. We move forward until we can verify or disprove these guesses and develop a revised game plan. But the last ten days or so has shown us water temperatures in the 89 degree mark. To give you a point of reference, the warmest I’ve ever seen the water at Corbetena is 91 degrees. So 89 degrees is right there and this is causing havoc. Yellowfin Tuna are around the rock. If you have bait you can catch them and there lies the rub. As we’ve seen many times, when the bait gets sparse, the fishing sucks (that’s a highly technical fishing term). So you have to bring your own bait to the rock in Tuna Tubes or your chances of boating a Marlin in the 300 lb range or a Yellowfin Tuna are pretty slim at best. But there are also other challenges, the bite for tuna is very late, just around sunset, but this isn’t weird at all. Tuna during a full moon will feed very early or just at sundown. That’s pretty much normal. What isn’t normal is there has been an early bite, a mid-day bite and then there’s the late bite which for Yellowfin Tuna is the strongest bite. So my first suggestion is, if targeting Yellowfin Tuna, is head out later in the day! Bring Skipjack Tuna as bait in your tuna tubes. If you don’t have this bait, your day is doomed before you even start. So you have to make bait in the bay where the Skip Jack Tuna are huge at 15 lb right now. If you can find “bullet Bonito” aka baby Bonito, this bait is working even better. There still are Marlin and Sailfish in the area, but the simple fact is they’re super spread out. This all comes down to the simple fact, fishing in this area has gone in reverse. Stay tuned, this won’t last long.

The area around El Morro to Punta Mita is a short story. Dorado are in the area if you can find a mature trash line or buoy. And what you’ll find will be small at around 10 lbs. Sailfish are also roaming the area, but if you’re out more than ten miles, you won’t find a Sailfish for nothing! You can still find Jack Crevalles, Bonito and with some luck Rooster fish. Other than that, not too much else to say.

Inside the bay was great, but things are going in reverse here as well. The good news is you can still have a great day in the bay. With an outside chance of Sailfish, there are still smaller Dorado at Los Arcos, Jack Crevalles in the middle of the bay, huge Skipjack Tuna at 15 lbs, Bonito to 20 lbs and lots of smaller species hanging around the trash line in the bay. The good news is there are no bait issues inside the bay. So for now, a six hour fishing trip would be your best bang for your fishing dollar. This could change in a heartbeat so stay positive.

The bite right now is still about 08:00, but if you’re targeting Yellowfin Tuna, and they’re out there. You need to be at the rock before sunrise to have a shot at Tuna or just before sunset. Nothing new with Tuna, but it’s good to be reminded. Water temperatures as mentioned earlier is 89 degrees. If targeting Tuna and it’s not at the bite times, remember to run downriggers at 140 feet to start. Tuna regulate their body temperature by heading deep. This is when Tuna Tubes and electronics are your best friends. Live Skipjack Tuna are essential if targeting larger species. But I’d bring along dead bait and squid, who knows, it could be the secret!  

Until next week, don’t forget to kiss your fish!

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