Yellowfin Tuna, Marlin, Sailfish, Cubera Snappers, Corbeteña Explodes!
Written by Stan Gabruk, owner Master Baiter´s Sportfishing and Tackle
We wait all year for August to bring with it Monster Yellowfin Tuna, Marlin, Sailfish and more. Those that have the money, the time and the inclination will find everything they are looking for when it comes to Trophy Gamefish here in Puerto Vallarta´s world famous fishing grounds. For the last three years we have been stuck with unusual weather conditions due to El Nino and the following year, last year, buy El Nina. Extreme water temperature fluctuations have subsided finally this year. As a result we are seeing places like Corbeteña, one of the hot spots for sure, explode with what serious Deep Sea or Sports fisherman are looking for. If you were asked to describe the perfect conditions you would hope to experience while going after huge Game Fish, then this is the time to be here in Puerto Vallarta! The only thing missing at our fishing grounds is you! High season for fishing has taken a great leap forward this week, so hang tight, the fishing just got great!
This week we have seen sleepy Corbeteña wake up and Roar! Thirty five miles out from Marina Vallarta is Corbeteña, also referred to as the rock. With a rock in the middle, deep Chanels and volcanic structure Corbeteña is the most versatile fishing site we have in Puerto Vallarta. We have been seeing large numbers of Yellowfin Tuna in the 25 to 200lb range for weeks now, but getting them to take your bait was not easy. Changing baits every twenty minutes hoping to tease these elusive Yellowfin Tuna was work and no two baits would work twice in a row. Frustrating for sure, but this has changed. One good thing about fishing, it won´t be bad for long. My glass is always half full when it comes to fishing! Right now Yellowfin are finally taking Skippies. Skippies refer to Skip Jack Tuna or small Yellowfin Tuna and right now that is about all they want. Now for some reason Dead bait (Skippies) are working well, in fact to be exact, fresh dead bullet Skippies of about five pounds and dead Google Eyes are your best option. Now lures are working also, but if you come across a boil a surface popper or surface Iron like a diamond jig will all work. So try those first before you go to kites and other methods of getting Yellowfin Tuna to come!
There is also larger Black and Blue Marlin hitting baits, but not exactly hitting every bait. Lots of Black Marlin strikes, but few being boated for some reason, we´ll blame the angler here. Once they are on the line, it is normally slack that is the reason they get away. So remember, tight lines are a common term, but a line with slack in it will result in spit hooks! And who goes out to lose Moby Dick? So keep the pressure on amigos, it will make the difference. Oh, Marlin are in the 450 t o 650 lb. range right now and will gradually increase in size as we sink deeper into the summer season. Stay tuned!
Sailfish, yes I said Sailfish are getting more abundant by the day. Corbeteña is full of them and they are running in the 95 to about 120lb range, large for Sailfish for sure! They are a lot late, but we`ll count our blessings and be glad we have them around. Same goes for bait with them, as with the Marlin and Yellowfin Tuna.
An unexpected surprise is the abundance of Cubera Snappers in the 60 to 80lb range. Now they love the volcanic structure around Corbeteña but will school and attack surface baits. They fight like a Sailfish, but taste much, much better. You bring some of that fish to Victors Café Te Cuba in Marina Vallarta, tell them Master Baiter´s Stan sent you and sit back, You will have a meal cooked four or five different ways fresh off the boat . It doesn’t get any better than that amigos! Me, I would rather have Cubera Snapper for dinner, Sails, they need to be released for sure!
Noticeably absent is Dorado, why, who knows. Fish come and they go, but for now they are not hanging around the Rock. Now this will change twenty minutes after this article is written, but that is fishing for you. Keep your ears on and it won´t be but a few days and it will all change for the better on these species. If you are looking for these great tasting fish, I suggest in the bay and the 20 to 30 pounders if you are lucky enough to find them. Look for floating logs or anything smaller fish can hide and you will find Dorado… this will change soon so stay tuned.
The Marietta islands are being ignored. With Corbeteña, Punta Mita and the bay firing on all cylinders, there is little need to take a chance when there are some hot locations you don´t have to guess about. It all comes down to the fuel dollar and what you are willing to spend to find that finned fantasy of a life time! Decisions, decisions, but don´t ask the wife what you should spend your fuel money on, she`ll tell you a new purse for her!! Been there, done that, got the T-shirt!
I know I just spent some time discussing Corbeteña, but no mention of El Banco. The reason for that is I have no reports from El Banco! It may be every bit as good as Corbeteña, but it is farther out by 15 miles or so and with the cost of fuel getting more expensive by the day, 15 miles in and then double that for a round trip, you just saved yourself some dinero amigo! Always a concern in these days of shrinking fun money…. Or if you prefer, disposable income.
Another area I have not talked much about is the point off Punta Mita! Normally by this time of the year this location is a Sailfish machine. Well it has been anything but a machine up until now, but this area has exploded as well. Sailfish are about seven miles off the point and they are abundant. For the guy with 8 hrs to spend, this is a perfect place to target! Same deal with bait, dead Skippies and Google eyes, as well as a few lures will get them striking all over the place. Just remember to release the babies, I don`t need to see any juvenile Sailfish or Marlin on the docks just for a picture, do that out there and release the babies. In case you have not heard diminishing populations of fish are not the result of the Sport fisherman, but we need to do our part and that starts with caring. That means when the captain kills the billfish, even if he knows you want to release the fish, then don´t tip him. He is coming in and planning on selling your fish to make ends meet which means you just subsidized his income and paid for his business day! Remember, it is illegal for sport fishing companies to sell fish commercially.
Sayulita and Guyavitos are seeing Rooster fish, but not in huge numbers. For those in the La Cruz marina or on the beaches in the Punta Mita area, it may be worth your time and effort.
Inside the bay it is still Football season as in Football Yellowfin Tuna to 40lbs. Some days they are around the trash line, other days they are chasing bait around the bay. And still others are in the shallows or near structure like rock jetties. Bonito, Needle fish, Skip Jack Tuna and Dorado are in the bay as well. Anywhere between Cabo Corrientes and Punta Mita is alive with action so listen to the radio on the way out in the morning.
I know this article is on the positive side, but I have been waiting for conditions like this since February! Right now you will find blue water just three miles off the point of Punta Mita all the way to the deep water fishing grounds of Punta Mita and Corbeteña. I mean deep, deep blue! Water temperatures are great if not perfect at 86 degrees. When it rains in the morning or while fishing, the Yellowfin Tuna have been coming up to enjoy the ¨sweet¨ water and freshness of the cooler water on the surface. The rain hitting the water always gets fish excited. You see they think it is bait fish returning back into the water after trying to leap to safety! So they like the freshness, the temperature and they like to be fooled! Casting a surface popper will drive them Crazy to get to your bait. So keep this information handy and to yourself amigo. Rain is the fisherman’s friend so don`t let little things like rain keep you from boating that bucket list fish you always dreamed about!
So conditions are about as good as you will get in summer if you are interested in Big Game or Deep Sea fishing in Puerto Vallarta. Prices on charter boats are doing their best to hold even with the raising fuel cost like in the states. But losing money is no way to stay in business so I suggest making late summer reservations as soon as possible and lock in the better prices before everyone raises prices, including myself.
Master Baiter’s is starting a new fishing program for those who want to go fishing when in Puerto Vallarta, but find it hard to squeeze it in when it comes time to make sure they are all having fun. So what my plan is, is to take payments and apply this money to your fishing trip when you come down, when ever that is. Here is the concept, Fishing is expensive and getting more expensive every day with fuel, maintenance cost, salaries and the list goes on. What I am in the process of now is setting up an investment account where I will deposit your money, in your name, and when you do come down, whatever amount you have in your account will go towards your fishing trip. Send a little, send a lot, don´t send anything. But whatever you send forward by week or month, this money is there so you don ´t have to take the hit to your vacation budget for taking a fishing trip. This way you don`t have to feel guilty if the family doesn´t get that tour in or your wifey doesn´t get that new outfit. This way they get what they want and you as the responsible ¨provider¨ can still go fishing and not even notice the money is gone. So smart planning will always make your life easier… If there is excess money in an account, you can always pull it out or pay it forward to the next trip. Kinda like a lay-away plan for fishing. If you are interested in something of this nature, feel free to contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org and we`ll fix you up…..
For those of you thinking of entering our local tournaments from Barra to Manzanillo, Master Baiter’s Captains are the best in Puerto Vallarta with many being multi-tournament winners. We keep our prices down as much as possible for tournaments because we like to be in the action too! So if saving some money and not paying double the regular price of a charter per day appeals to you, then contact me about the tournament you are interested in and we will fix you up with tried and true captains, boats and crews with fresh line, top notch equipment and tackle and of course English speaking, professional crews of course! So come be part of Team Master Baiter’s and find out for yourself that “We Won’t Jerk You Around!”
That’s about it for now, until next week, don´t forget to kiss your fish!
As the oldest fishing company in Puerto Vallarta and the only company with any World Recognized Fishing Championships like the WBS Billfishing Series Grand Champions (2000 and 2001) under our belt. Nobody, but nobody in Puerto Vallarta can come close to us in quality or price when it comes to world class fishing boats. 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!
For questions or suggestions you can reach me at: CatchFish@MasterBaiters.com.mx
The trade name Master Baiter’s ® Sportfishing and Tackle is protected under trade mark law and is the sole property to Stan Gabruk.