Seasonal Transition Fishing, Conditions Improve Slightly
Written by: Stan Gabruk owner of Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle
Compared to what the fishing was like last week, we´ve improved. Not greatly, but we´ll take it an inch at a time if we have to. Fish are still in a transition period between summer and winter where breeding in spring takes precedence over feeding. Which of course means it can be frustrating when you see the fish, you know they´re there, but they just won´t pay a speck of attention to your trolled master piece (bait). Along with the change in seasons come water temperature swings. The summer currents don´t just take over, they mix in with winter currents and this creates a swirling affect which can make experienced captains pull their hair out. This is where even cheap electronics will tell you the water you´re in is either warmer or cold. When you can´t see or find fish, trolling in the warm streaks and currents greatly improve your chances. Cheap boats, no equipment, no fish, it´s that easy. This is nothing new, having an experienced captain with a full bag of tricks (lures and baits) as well as a radio and electronics to me are basics clients should not have to ask about or for. Better boats will already have them in an effort to win your future business. Fly by the seat of their pants type boats and owners will find fish, but it´s luck so keep this in mind, it will ultimately help your cause.
On the positive side water temperature are up slightly, clear green water conditions are still present, not a bad thing. Bait has started to return, especially near the point of Punta Mita in the form of Sardines. Rooster fish are still chasing these Sardines so you´ll find Roosters near the reef of Anclote off Sayulita. With the chilled waters, Dorado have not shown any signs, but Snappers to 35 lbs are coming up and taking trolled baits. Pompano in the 45 lb range and of course Rooster fish over 35 lbs are not exactly abundant, but they are around. For now, no Sailfish, but this will change soo, Sailfish normally move into the area around late April to mid May.
The Marietta Islands are still seeing sketchy fishing. Some days plenty of fish, other days will make you pull your hair out. Mackerals of the Sierra variety, Bonito, Skip Jack Tuna, Snappers in the 35 lb range coming to the surface, Amber Jacks in the 40 lb range, Rooster fish if Sardines are in the area and of course Jack Crevalls, the standard day saver fish. All and all, nothing too spectacular, but for the visiting angler it´s the place to be to catch fish.
Those of you interested in off season fishing for Yellowfin Tuna can find satisfaction at the Tres Maria Islands. Again, these are protected fisheries, breeding grounds that surround a prison island that holds hardened criminals here in Mexico. As long as you stay outside of the restricted area, many call this the ¨buffer zone¨, you won´t have problems with the Federalies or other local authorities. Inside, well you´ll be chased like all the other guys ¨cheating¨ the boundaries. Yellowfin Tuna are running anywhere from 125 to 275 lbs right now. Bait swarming around the rocky areas makes this heaven for Yellowfin Tuna. It´s a long haul and an overnight trip is what makes the most sense, double the opportunities for double the price. The travel time is what kills you so get up with the bite and hook into a finned fantasy. Again, respect the boundaries and You´ll have fun.
Inside the bay is still on the short side. Skip Jack Tuna, Bonito, Jack Crevalls, Sierra Mackeral and that is about it. Naturally you´ll find all kinds of species around structure and a skilled captain with experience will always have his own secret spots.
With the full moon phase out of the way, you´ll remember the red moon, the bite is inching it´s way to mid morning. My suggestion is leave Marina Vallarta at or about 7:00 a.m. and you´ll be right on time. As far as bait goes, most of the natural bait has moved out of the bay for the moment, but again as stated earlier Sardines are coming back slowly so I expect things to pick up nicely by the time you read this article. Water temperatures are still chilly, but the sun is higher in the sky daily as summer gets closer by the day. So don´t be discouraged, you´ll catch fish, but it´s going to be work amigo. For now your best bet is still in the Punta Mita / Marietta Island areas until the deep water locations of El Banco and Corbeteña begin firing again.
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: CatchFish@MasterBaiters.com.mx Web page: www.MasterBaiters.com.mx , Local Phone at: (044) 322 779 75 71 or if roaming: 011 52 1 322 779 75 71 cell phone direct