Winter Gamefish Explode at the Marietta Islands, Rooster Fish Dominate, Laundry List Fishing!
Written by Stan Gabruk of Master Baiter ´s Sportfishing and Tackle
It seems that every year we just dread the end of Summer Fishing as the water temperatures drop and the Whales arrive. The Whales are PV`s friend, but the fish in the bay think they could be lunch for these monster sized Mammals! If you´re a Yellowfin Football in the bay, you look like a Google Eye to a Whale, or so the fish think. In reality they are more interested in the Krill squids than the fish. But for this reason the boils of Football Yellowfin Tuna have moved out of the bay, yet the bait balls are springing up in everywhere. As El Morro and the Marietta Explode with a laundry list of winter gamefish we have to accept that winter fishing is here. This means smaller fish, closer in, abundant and equipped with a bad attitude for sure. For the Hard Core, you can still have larger Yellowfin Tuna if you´re willing to take the risk and pay the price in dinero and time! So, what are you going to do now amigo? Welcome to Puerto Vallarta´s World Famous Fishing Grounds.
From this point forward I am afraid El Banco or The Bank in English is going to be something to think about come June when the warmer currents return. For now there are some reports from private boats of Marlin, Stripped I suspect, have been boated on multiday trips in the 300lb range. I was told it was larger, but we´re all fisherman so we understand! Spinner Dolphin are 8 to10 miles before you reach the high spots, which of course means smaller Yellowfin Footballs of forty pounds or so. Cubera Snappers and Bonito as well, but these species are no real reason to venture out and burn fuel when you can find better fishing closer in.
Hardcore Yellowfin Fanatics still have the Tres Maria Islands with Yellowfin Tuna to 250lbs. But don´t let your testosterone get the best of you amigo. The Tres Maria Islands are prision islands and getting closer than 15 miles is not permitted. There are some Drug Lord types out there now and there have been some escape attempts lately where believe it or not fishing boats picked up the escaped prisoners. There have been several boats that will tell you they have permits, insurance and fishing licenses, most don´t! One boat in particular was so careless this past year and pushed this envelope too many times. The Captain was finally brought to the islands under armed security guards confiscated the boat with clients who had to find their way back to Marina Vallarta and had a horrible day. Nobody knows about if the clients got their money back! This has happened more than a couple of times yet you will not hear about that from those who got busted and write articles blowing their horns. I Could tell you who and what boat, but I don´t like being a finger pointer, especially when you have three pointing back at you! Yet they´re charging enough for sure with no accountability?? I wonder if they will list these incident on their bloody decks site someday. For a group of finger pointers and nasty assholes, they seem to have forgotten to write this about themselves here. So don´t look to Bloody Decks for anything other than self promotion absent of responsibility and accountability as you lose your money and wonder if you are going to wind up in Jail.
Corbeteña is also slowing down, but there are still signs of Summer Fishing here for the moment. The bite has been all over the place and while there are Yellowfin Tuna from 40 to 150 lbs, you better be there when they`re in the mood. And like our female counter parts, reading their minds is impossible! My suggestion is for now to hit it early around sun-up at the Rock to take a s hot at Yellowfin, Sails, Cubera Snappers, Dorado to 40lbs, Bonito, and more. Water temperatures hit 72 degrees here this week so whatever warm currents they can find out there is where you`ll find these finned fantasies. But you better get out there quick while the iron is still hot so to speak!
The place to be t his week was once again the area around El Morro and the Marietta Islands. The primary players once again are Rooster fish! Running anywhere from 25 to 50 lbs these quill headed demons ar e thick around the reefs and upwelling’s at El Morro. They are aggressive and hungry, poppers, Google Eyes, Diamond Jigs, Rapallas, take your pick, they´ll hit it! Snappers to from 10 to 20 lbs are perfect for the blue plate special, Dorado, Amber Jacks, Pompano, Jack Crevalls you even have a shot (30%) of hitting a Sailfish out there. So the laundry list of fish available is constantly changing, yet plentiful in this area. Since we are looking at mirror weather conditions from last year we have no reason to think this sort of action at the Islands will change in the near future. It is hard to complain about having fish, I mean really… but I will. Just a reminder, the islands and the reefs are protected areas so respect the regulations even if there isn`t anyone to enforce them!
Update 12/21/2011: El Morro, The Marietta Islands, and Punta Mita have all come to an almost dead stop when it comes to Rooster fish. Why, who knows, the bite was happening between 10 and 12 in the day. Many Rooster out there, few are taking bait. There are these tiny, tiny sardines that are like caviar to these fish and getting them to hit one right now is like getting your kids to eat peas! Dorado are all but gone, El Banco has some on the south side off the high spots. No news from Corbeteña
Four and six hour trips in the bay are fo r light tackle gamefish like Snappers, Sierra Mackerals, Bonito, Jack Crevalls, and the list goes on… Like I mentioned earlier the Whales have pretty much scared the Yellowfin Footballs out of the bay along with Dorado. The bay for now is the most affordable option, but not your best option. For those with kids, the bay is perfect for them right now. Fly fisherman fare is all over the bay and if you are a ¨fly guy¨ bring the 10 wt poles, they`ll be tested!
Since you are here on my web page report, I had some folks come in the shop the other evening talking about the great time they had with another company that they had fished with. As I asked them some light questions they told me they were hooking into Rooster fish like crazy, but for some reason the line broke (9 times) under stress. I did not share the following information with these folks after the fact and don´t like stepping on peoples fun time memories with the negatives. For the record amigos, if you have line that is breaking under stress for a Rooster fish, several times, then you are fishing with OLD LINE. This guy lost nine fish because of this one little and easy to correct thing, fresh fishing line! This is one of the most basic expectations you should have for any fishing company. But you don´t know this will happen until you find yourself losing the fish you paid to boat! With the double expense for everything fishing in Mexico, this is a 30 dollar fix, once a year. So remember discount boats are slow and should come with NO expectations. All you have to do is look at the line, if it looks yellowed, salty, or just bad, you know what you are not getting. Don´t even get me started about drags when you have a reel full of stressed and ancient line. Make sure you know what you are getting or more importantly paying for and not getting. For those of you out there thinking this sounds like ¨sour grapes¨ I can see how you may think that. But Master Baiter´s is the oldest and most respected fishing company in Puerto Vallarta and has been for twelve years now. I provide business for every reputable fishing boat there is in Marina Vallarta with my overflow business. I will be here when and if there is only one fishing company in PV it will be Master Baiters. We´ve weathered the storms, we´re still here and our primary interest is getting you on fish. I will tell you if another company or boat is good, and there are several. The same holds true on the downside amigos. Once you find a person or company you feel you can trust, build some history with them and share your positive and negative opinions of who you are fishing with. It only builds the business of the good and lets the lower quality boats rely on selling their products at going broke prices. One step ahead of bankruptcy! Remember you are paying for wet line time, not getting there and back time. Fast boats cost more, it´s a fuel issue. So ask how long it will take to get to the fishing grounds and base your tips on what they deliver.
As we come to another New Year I would like to thank everyone who reads my weekly articles. I enjoy writing them, but never really know how many readers I have. So who ever or where ever you are, I appreciate your support and hope to continue writing for years to come. So Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from all of us at Master Baiter´s Sportfishing and Tackle in Marina Vallarta!
While you are in town don`t forget to visit Marina Vallarta with the ¨other Malicon¨ in Puerto Vallarta! It`s the second most popular tourist attraction in Puerto Vallarta with Restaurant row and 150 shops of all kinds… I´ll keep an eye out for you!
Until next time, don´t forget to kiss your fish!
Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle is located in Marina Vallarta on the Boardwalk between the light house and Porto Bellos restaurant. Come by and say hello! Remember, at Master Baiter´s Sportfishing and Tackle, We Won´t Jerk You Around! If you have any questions on any subject regarding fishing or Puerto Vallarta, feel free to ask at my email: CatchFish@MasterBaiters.com.mx
The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property of Stan Gabruk.