Marlin Fishing on the Baja Peninsular in Mexico
At the point of Baja Peninsular, nestled between the Pacific Ocean on the West and about 200 miles across from mainland Mexico over the Sea of Cortez on the East, lies the tropical desert paradise of Cabo San Lucas
The fishing in the fertile waters off of Cabo is truly spectacular all year round. Here Pacific Ocean meets the Sea of Cortez and the massive depth of water just off shore and myriad underwater canyons and seamounts ensure a hugely diverse marine habit. This upwelling of nutrients brings in enormous shoals of Sardines , Herring and small bait fish , pursuing these come Bonito and Skipjacks up to 30 lbs , and hunting them are our quarry , the Marlin, Sailfish , Tuna , Dorados and the Razor gang.
The striped marlin population is incredibly abundant all year round and has earned Cabo the title of Marlin Capital of the World. These hard fighting speedsters come close inshore, allowing them to be targeted with the smaller Panga boats, making Cabo a very economical place to fish, by comparison to some venues. February, March and April are the best months for these fish. Dorado, tuna and Wahoo are also available at that time. In the summer months when the water warms the Dorado and tuna action increases and peaks in the months of August, September, October, and November. The first two weeks of December can also be very good. Every year yellowfin tuna over 200 lbs and Dorado over 80 lbs are tagged and released.
Big blue and black marlin migrate in at this time to feed on the smaller dorado and tuna and landing one of these fish in the 400-600 lb class is not unusual. Cabo is famous for its autumn marlin tournaments where total prize money can be over one million dollars! Clients are encouraged to release their Billfish. We appreciate your cooperation in this matter in order to preserve the quality of the sportfishing in Cabo area.
Baja offers some of the best Surf fishing in the world, with Cubera Snapper, Roosterfish, Spanish mackerel and sharks all offering a diversion from the excitement of the Bluewater. We can organize guided beach fishing days, giving you the chance to experience the great sport available with the head start of an experienced beach guide. Tackle can be provided for a small fee.
Boats in General
Mexican fishing boats are divided into four general types: Panga, Super Panga, Cruiser, and Yacht. Pangas are the least expensive and are generally a smaller (20-24 foot) open boat with some type of bimini roof/cover and powered by a hand-controlled outboard with the captain sitting in the stern. Pangas can accommodate up to two anglers plus the captain.
Super Pangas are a little larger than the Panga, still outboard powered, but are generally center-console operated and sometimes have twin engines. Passengers are usually limited to three on a Super Panga.
Cruisers are mostly vintage fiberglass boats such as Uniflites, La Paz-built Californians, Bertram 31’s and similar ones built by other manufacturers, in the 25-32 foot range. Cruisers generally have a flying bridge and small salon below, outriggers, one or two fighting chairs in the cockpit, and single or twin diesels. Most Cruisers will not exceed something the size of a Bertram 31. Passengers are limited to four on smaller (28 foot) cruisers and six on the larger cruisers, though most Mexican skippers will tell you any more than four on a fishing boat are a crowd.
Do you guarantee a catch? Fishing is fishing, catching is another subject, it is very different. But your chances to catch a Marlin in Cabo are the amongst the highest anywhere in the world.
What’s the fishing all about then? Marlin fishing is like hunting, you have to search in the sea surface for the tell tale signs of Marlin feeding. The most common method involves teasing a fish to the surface using a set of plastic lures , once you see the fish, all the lines are recovered and a live bait is cast to where the fish has been seen , once the bait is taken you can expect up to an hour of sheer exhilaration. Although this method is the most effective, drifting with live baits, trolling a fish strip and fly fishing will also account for their share of fish.
Is there bottom fishing, my kids enjoy that? Super pangas are the choice for bottom fishing, and you may expect to catch red snapper, sea bass, sierra, toro and rooster fish among other species.
Do they have tackle and is it included? I guess you can get food and drink close by? Prices are per boat, and includes 8 hours fishing , fishing gear (Shimano and Peen International reels and rods), lures, licenses, ice chest with ice, experienced captain and mate (do not expect fluent English), and complementary cleaning of catch.
What else is there to do when where not fishing? Cabo boasts a wide range of activities , which include Motorcycle tours ,Scuba diving , Cycling , Hiking ,Climbing , Off road excursions , Golf , Whale watching , Water sports , Pony trekking and of course fabulous golden beaches.
What about the Weather? Cabo san Lucas is set in a desert, so a maximum of 10 days rain per year is average. Temperatures are normally in the mid 30s.
Tackle & Things
We recommend a 9 or 10-weight for Sierra (also known as cero or Spanish mackerel), 12-weights for everything else — except marlin. On them, you’ll need a 14-weight rod. Winds here make 10-wt rods too light for most fishing. Also, you never know what lurking monster is going to hit your fly. “Never be-under-gunned” is sort of our Motto around here, and we strongly suggest you follow our advice. We suggest and use all-sinking-lines on our fly reels (from intermediate to fast sink).
Be sure to bring along Clouser minnows, sizes #4 through 2/0. The small Clousers will pick up tuna, often when nothing else will. Try the Abel Big Fish Fly or Abel Holy Mackerel. Edgewater brand poppers are great for Dorado. Blue & white and green & white anchovy and sardine patterns are the ticket for success. Do not forget wire trace leaders for Sierra. Trey Combs’ Sea Habits, in all sizes, are some of my favorites, including his billfish flies. Ray Beadle’s billfish flies work incredibly well. Lefty’s Deceivers and Abel Anchovies are standard.
AVAILABLE RODS, REELS & LINES
We use 30-lb. test line while trolling lures and 20-pound test line when we cast live baits. All our rods are Loomis light-tackle rods. They’re fitted with Shimano TLD 20, 25, or Shimano 400’s and Penn Internationals.
From £2895 per person
Includes: 7 nights AC Room Only Accommodation at the Mar de Cortez Hotel, American Airways Economy flight via Dallas or Houston, 5 days Bluewater and Inshore fishing aboard one of our 22ft Super Pangas, All prices are based on 2 persons sharing Room and Boat