Well, here we are again, another week of changing currents, changing water temperatures and massive amounts of bait and whale food! Yes folks this is the transition period where you never really know what conditions you’ll be dealing with and for the last three weeks now, things have pretty much been the same. Of course this is no surprise and my articles are meant to limit the frustration and save on the fuel expenses. And like I’ve been telling everyone for the last few weeks, you have two real fishing options, six hours in the bay or twelve hours, more would be better. Where Dorado, Sailfish and Striped Marlin can be found. Maybe not boated, again, that depends on the level of bait in the water and how hungry the fish are. Are you getting a “feel” for conditions? We’re transitioning from not only a La Nina year, but from winter species and water temperatures to summer species and hopefully warm water.
Focusing on Fishing in Puerto Vallarta, I like to look at what’s happening in the surrounding areas of Barra Navidad and Manzanillo, both to the north and south respectively. I had been getting report that the Dorado fishing and Striped Marlin were lined up waiting for your bait. And here we are in Puerto Vallarta struggling to get a strike, things have changed. The Whales are moving out and that could be part of it, but the real news is Sailfish are back and they’re taking baits. Striped Marlin are also in the beginning stages of taking baits as well. Dorado are full of eggs and the Jack Crevalles that were full of eggs are now taking baits as well. So there have been some nice changes for the positive. And the locations of Barra and Manzanillo, as I understand it, their water has turned cold like it should be. As 0ur water currents are swirling. This means we still have warmer water in the area, which of course helps keep warm water species in the area.
Right now your best bang for your fishing dollar is six hours in the bay. Bonito averaging 20 lbs, Jack Crevalles to 50 lbs, Sierra Mackerals are the equivalent of Ocean Trout, plentiful but no larger than 10 lbs. We’re still seeing the occasional Dorado, but with thirty boats heading out, maybe 2 Dorado boated. Which means they’re out there, but it probably won’t be you catching it! A couple of tricks you might want to try is using a downrigger, which seems to be working. The other is use light leader. Many of these guys, local Captains use heavy fluorocarbon leader of 80 to 125 lbs. When fishing for smaller gamefish, it’s like connecting a minnow to T.V. Cable! Drop your leader to 40 or 50 lbs and you’ll have better results. Keep these secrets to yourself.
We’ve come into a time of the year where we just don’t really know what to expect when talking about fishing in Puerto Vallarta. The title isn’t code, it’s a recipe of ingredients. It’s a mixed bag where if you have all the ingredients measured out in the right mix will make your day on the water memorable. We’re in a “La Nina” year and what’s happening is unpredictable and confusing at best when trying to predict the near term “fishing” conditions. We’re in a transition period where summer species if not already gone like Dorado, Blue Marlin and Sailfish, for the most part soon will be. Normally, once we get ready to enter February we have an “Indian summer” of fishing. Late season Dorado normally come down from California. But this year, who knows. The fact of the matter is we know what we have right now. Predicting the future when it comes to fishing is easy if your crystal ball doesn’t have a crack in it like mine!
Every year about this time we start to see the currents change, water temperature drop and now the types of bait have changed. We get periods of time where we get Squid and tiny Shrimps in the water which can be frustrating. Then we get these Red Crabs. We call them the Tuna Crabs, they float and travel with the currents and when they’re around, you have a major challenge. Right now we have both so it’s a double whammy. But it’s not just about bait, water temperatures are in a “free fall” right now, but we still have warm areas and that’s the real story this week!
So here we go again, transitional season, pull your hair out trying to figure out what we “have” here in Puerto Vallarta’s fishing grounds. As you should expect with dropping water temperatures in mid-January things can get confusing. Dorado are still in the area, but that’s not saying much. We are still seeing Blue Marlin, but nothing automatic. Sailfish have bugged out, but now Wahoo are starting to make an appearance. I told people all last week to forget about Dorado in the bay and then Wham! Dorado are in the bay. The only thing I can say for sure is Corbetena and El Banco are hardly showing a pulse!
Fishing in Puerto Vallarta continues to be world class this week with all the most popular species. Marlin are picking up in numbers and size. Sailfish, Dorado and even Yellowfin Tuna are all at our world famous deep water fishing grounds with blue water everywhere and plenty of varied baits. Water temperatures are holding steady and of course the climate here in Puerto Vallarta is nicer every day as we enter high season in Puerto Vallarta.
It’s a “life is a box of Chocolates” sort of situation now when it comes to fishing in Puerto Vallarta. It can be hot and then cold, then hot again. We need to remember that fish move and you need to be prepared to chase the birds. If you’re stuck on a boat that won’t use fuel, then you picked the wrong company to fish with. The fact of the matter is you will catch fish, right here, right now! Dorado are averaging over 20 lbs, Sailfish are picking daily in numbers, Marlin, Tuna, maybe even Rooster Fish. With plenty of varied bait there isn’t any problems making bait. Water Temperatures are a bit lower than we like at this time of the year, but still in the “normal” range. Blue water and smooth seas. What more could you want?
For the locals in Puerto Vallarta we all know that no matter how good things were yesterday, it’s no promise for tomorrow. Don’t take that as a suggesting that fishing has taken a turn for the worse, quite the opposite. We’re finally heading into the time of the year when the fishing is about as good as it’s going to get. From this point forward Marlin, Sailfish, Dorado, Tuna, you name it will be on the increase. But like always there is a “monkey wrench” that will soon be affecting our fishing both here and up the coast into the states!
After years, if you’ve been reading my articles, then you know what happened last week or even yesterday is no guarantee of what will happen tomorrow! But if this week is any indication of what is to come, then we’re going to have a great fishing season! With Black Marlin finally making an appearance, Yellowfin Tuna are right there with them. Now fishing this early in the season is always hard to call, but we have fish! If you’re thinking about coming to go fishing in Puerto Vallarta, world class fishing awaits you now.