Water Temperatures Nose Dive, Striped Marlin at El Banco on Plastics
As news of the frigid weather in the states filters its way down to Mexico we are reminded that we are not immune to cooling temperatures as well. As I have mentioned a thousand times, weather patterns follow water temperatures. If you check Florida land temperatures they are in line with what is happening off the cost in the water. Places like Fort Lauderdale are seeing day time highs in the 20’s. Now we are beginning to see the same conditions here in Puerto Vallarta. Water temperatures are as cool as I can remember, barely in the 70’s as this article is written. This is of course the reason most of the larger game fish have left the area, but that doesn´t mean they all left! Those with the desire still can find Striped Marlin at El Banco or at San Pancho. That’s the good news, the bad news is you´ll be putting in the time and the distance with no guarantees you´ll catch anything. Winter fishing has come to Puerto Vallarta!
When we hit this time of the year we don´t see the fanatics we see in September and October searching for Monster Yellowfin Tuna or Black Marlin. Most folks are looking for shorter days with smaller game fish and if this is you, then you´re in luck. If you´re looking for Moby Dick, he has left the building and will be hanging with Elvis until spring returns!
At El Banco those brave enough with the fuel money have had some success on Striped Marlin in the 250 to 400 lb range. Live bait which is usually king has not been working that well. Now plastic lures of purple are doing the trick better than live bait. This is not normally the case but there are times of the year we see this happen and now would be one of those times. Yellowfin Tuna are actually here as well, but they are fickle and not taking bait or lures, period. Make no doubt about it, La Nina is here in full force and it has nothing to do with global warming or any such nonsense like that. So it´s time for us all to change our game plans and start focusing on what we have and not what fish we wish were here!
Corbeteña, normally a hot spot, if you hit this location right now, you´ll be lucky to get Bonito or Skip Jacks. So don´t spend your time or money hitting this spot, it would be a waste of your fuel dollar.
If you bite the bullet and head north to San Pancho you will find Sailfish, but they are not plentiful. Striped Marlin has come in as well, but then again, they´re not exactly in the mood to take your bait at the moment. You see Sardines have moved in the whole area as is normal as water temps drop, so the fish have plenty to eat and are being fickle to say the least. In fact the Sardines have taken over most places and it will only add to your frustration to see boils and not get the fish to respond with a strike. But if you hang in there, your efforts will be rewarded.
Right now the best bang for your fishing buck is the Marietta Islands, there you´ll find Rooster fish (25 to 45 lbs), the odd Dorado, Snappers like crazy in the 35 lb range, African Pompano up to 35lbs, Sierra Mackerals, Bonito, and Amber Jacks, not to mention Jack Crevalls that don´t mind cold water at all. Again, this is winter fishing and on the up side the fishing is relatively inexpensive.
Rooster Fish are thinning out, but not gone at Sayulita. Any are where you´ll find structure will be productive and you can even get these beauties from the beaches is you have a surf rig. Using poppers or silver diamond jigs, the old reliable, still work fine and they´re cheap. Sometimes it´s better to go with what works and not the expensive option that only hooks you, the angler with his mouth wide open as you’re reeled in at the tackle store! No worries, we’ve all been there and I´ve got a boat full of lures I spent too much money on that don´t work any better than a cedar plug of five bucks! So you don’t need to get fancy, you just need to get there!
Inside the bay you´ll always find Jack Crevalls which many times will save the day when it comes to making sure clients see some action. These fish are real fighters and remember, everything counts in large amounts, so catching a bunch of these will make your day if you don´t have an attitude about them.
Last but not least, there are Monsters at the Tres Maria Islands, also known as the prison Islands. The Tuna are running between 120 to 240 lbs. But be warned, these Monsters are only two miles off the islands and this is where the rub is. They have a 15 mile buffer zone that if you are inside this area you will find your boat being impounded and you may just lose your investment and toy. So if you decide to head out this way, don´t take the chance, hang in the correct areas and have a good time!
Changing gears, many times people will come into the shop and ask if there is anybody that smokes fish? Well until recently I had to tell them NO, I don´t know of anyone, but now I do! There are these two ladies who just moved to Buceras that are smoking fish and if you are interested in having your catch smoked, they have a 30 kilo minimum, about seventy pounds worth. They will come pick it up and deliver after the process is done. I don´t have prices on hand, but if this is something you might be interested in the call Caren or Heather from ¨Made of the Sea LLC¨ at: (044) 322 136 7365 or email them at: madeof the email@example.com for more details.
For all twenty five of my loyal readers, let me take this time to wish you a Merry Xmas and Happiest of New Years for you and your family and may you enjoy good health and worry free days in the following year.
Until next time, don´t forget to kiss your fish!
The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property to Stan Gabruk. Always ask to speak with Stan to insure product quality and to insure you are working with the true Master Baiter´s ® and not an imposter