Yellowfin Tuna Fifty Miles Out, Blue Water at El Banco / Corbeteña, Great Fishing Now!
Written by Stan Gabruk
I was reading a few of my old articles and it dawned on me I have almost been making excuses why the fishing here in Puerto Vallarta has been less than it´s normal perfect self. Imagine this, Puerto Vallarta has some of the BEST FISHING GROUNDS IN THE ENTIRE WORLD and I am making excuses for unusual conditions that made things ¨less than perfect¨, which is about as spoiled as you can get. With normally perfect conditions your expectations are always elevated. So if somebody isn´t catching Moby Dick at El Banco that doesn´t mean fishing is bad. It just means Moby has not entered the building quite yet, but he´s coming for sure.
One thing that always surprises me is the perception people have about Fishing in Puerto Vallarta and that is there are only four or five species of gamefish worth going after. Strange stuff to me since my Mexican National Friends who don’t have boats, still love fishing and are not targeting Monster Yellowfin Tuna from the shore line. You want to catch fish and the water is dirty, then head to the river mouths where that dirty water is pouring into the bay from the run-off from the seasonal rains in the local mountains. My national friends know Roballo or Snook will be heading to this free meal of seeds, leaves, bugs, all sorts of stuff they just love to chow down on! Yes the water is dirty, but Roballo are looking for this organic sediment in this dirty water and will hit a lure they can see like my ex wife used to hit the Nordstrom’s Half Yearly Sale, they both take no prisoners! Now catching a 30 to 50 pound Snook with its white meat and wonderful flavor is a great alternative than going after Dorado every single time you go fishing… I mean there are other fish in these waters that would be worth of your attention and in four to six hours on a panga if you want to hit this from the sea side of things is cheap and well worth the convenience of being put on fish directly.
At this time of the year we hit the wall when it comes to humidity. For about two weeks before the seasonal rains begin the humidity goes through the roof. Well we finally got the rains and this means all sorts of things to people, primarily the relief from heavy humidity or at least a few hours as it turns to rain. If you live in Vallarta this is a perfect time to be at Brando’s or Chappy’s Bar putting a cold one down as you watch the rain and maybe lightening from you dry perch. To those fishing it means the mixed blessing of the Trash line as we call it. Mentioned earlier this trash line is where the clean water and dirty water from the mountain runoff are divided by a line of sediment type organic materials washing down the rivers, streams and streets. Dorado, Skip Jack Tuna and every Rooster fish will take this free meal and chase the smaller fish that thrive on this free and fast food. The smaller fish will take refuge in the dirty water when larger species looking for a meal are within striking distance. Tossing a three inch Diamond jig, commonly called Iron will produce results if there are any fish in the area. Remember this trash line is not a few hundred feet long, it can stretch all the way to the Marietta Islands so you still have to find these fish. Thank god or even cheap electronics. So don’t be afraid to explore some of the many forms of fishing we have here in Puerto Vallarta and Banderas Bay.
As far as what we’re seeing now is a bit of a mixed bag. There has been some red tide in the bay. Now mixed in with some dirty water this is a challenge. But the red tide is moving out and there are small fish to be had still in the bay. Nothing like the 70lb Sailfish we had very close to shore last week here near Marina Vallarta. The bullets or baby bonito have moved out and the fishing slowed down her for a little bit. Dorado in t he 15 to20 lb ranges in the bay are still looking for your offerings in the clean water or near a trash line. Bonito, Skip Jack Tuna are also south near Cabo Corrientes to the Yelapa area. Basically if you can find the clean water areas you have dinner amigos! Snappers, Pompano in the 25 lb range as well available if you target something different than Dorado.
The Marietta Islands to Punta Mita has turned into Sailfish City. Small to large it’s a Sailfish Bill garden with plenty of bait, perfect water temperatures and improving by the day amigos. Roosters are slacking off here a little, no reason for this. Needle fish are moving in as well, a little late for them. Bonito, Skip Jack tuna, and Snappers with the possibility of Rainbow runners and the list goes on….
Now the deep water locations of Corbeteña and El Banco are still sporting 150 lb Yellowfin Tuna with Crystal Clear Sapphire blue water and abundant bait. Sailfish are also getting thicker by the day as they love this area with the varied terrain and abundant bait come summer time. Marlin are here, but it is a low percentage catch for the moment. We´re still a little early in the Season for Marlin, but I hear Cabo is seeing some Blue Marlin now. They have not as yet given me a confirmation date as when to expect them, but we know they´ll be here shortly with no announcement. At Corbeteña you may need to look a little to the south west about ten to fifteen miles out from the rock to find Yellowfin where the warm currents seem to be bringing in more bait from down south. You´re looking at twelve hour fishing trips for these fish amigos. I am making crazy stupid deals on Magnifico, Andelé and Guanatuna II my super panga just to get the boats moving and my captains in tortillas. No specifics here for my competition to use, but call or Email me and get a deal you would never see unless my guys weren´t sitting idle… you´ll be glad you called.
Tres Maria Islands have been on the quiet side. Not many boats heading out this way with lower tourism and Yellowfin Tuna at El Banco. The fuel expense doesn´t make sense when it´s a gamble there as well for triple the fuel expense!
As I mentioned earlier, Fishing on any given day poses its own challenges which a competent crew and captain will see and know how to deal with. With our normal challenges of Dirty water from the mountains, strange currents, seas, bait and water conditions, nothing is ever exact or go as we would like. The primary challenge of fishing is still Man against Fish in what would be considered the equivalent of Elephant or Lyon Hunting in Hemmingway’s days. Big Game, Deep Sea or World Class Sportfishing are three different terms for the same thing. It has never been cheap and is getting more expensive every day. Remember what you´re paying for, the first thing being the truth from the people you are dealing with. Everyone in Marina Vallarta these days except three of us are all selling ¨cheap¨ with the added benefit of a timeshare presentation. Please remember if you are dealing with anyone or any company make sure you can go back to them if there is an issue. Some guy walking on the boardwalk or coming up to you in a restaurant trying to sell tours, timeshare or fishing is not the people you want to deal with. The boats these guys push are NOT INSURED HAVE NO LEGAL LICENSES and too cheap to have top notch equipment and tackle that is maintained. In reality they are expensive for what they offer, except for a cheap price on a boat that doesn´t look like its photo or may not even be the same boat you expected. There are lists of things that are different than better quality boats, service being the main factor. Having said that, if you are looking for price, I can put you on the best of the economy boats in Marina Vallarta. Most are charging ¨ putting myself out of business¨ prices, and then let me put you on the best of those Mexican hand crafted boats. Your professional expectations should be lowered with fewer baits, older equipment (fine working), not a beautiful or overly well maintained boat, but they will have insurance and licensed captains. Not that guy in the restaurants third cousin on his mother’s side for a captain who works once month fishing would be a bad thing?! There are some decent guys out there, but if you are not in the game here in PV, then you are the game…. Like being played?
For now, we have no delusions for what the Fishing Tourism holds for us this year. We know the press is putting out as much as they can against all of Mexico and lets face it they are giving the American and International Press plenty to write about. For those who know Mexico and Places like Cabo or Puerto Vallarta these fears are unfounded in fact on any level. The big surprise is people suddenly realize there is crime in Mexico, well DA! With 150 million people in the country things are going to happen. The numbers they quote as Americans passing away in Mexico include Heart Attacks, Strokes, Car Accidents, and some crime. Houston last year had more Americans die from drug related incidents than all of Mexico. Does that mean the USA is Dangerous, maybe. Does it mean if you put all the heart attacks, etc in the death count that you will have a problem or incident, hardly! But with this false press, the hotels are empty, the restaurants are running deals, the peso is as favorable to exchange rates as I have ever seen them to the dollar and these World Famous Fishing Grounds we just spoke of are as empty as you will ever see them. To have El Banco and the High Spots to your self is an unexpected luxury and when things turn around will return to being crowded. For the guy who can think for himself and has the facts he needs in hand, he knows this is an opportunity that should be taken advantage of if the inclination is there.
I just want to say thanks for reading my ramblings and as always you can expect to get Straight Talk about the fishing and conditions here in Puerto Vallarta. Please tell your friends of my articles and sign up to my blog and web site for instant updates. Master Baiter´s is the only in depth and accurate fishing report you will find on the internet where I am not talking about how cool we are as a company, everyone already knows who we are. So what you hear in real time is useable information now if you are heading out fishing. Your expectations should be in line with the reports here and you will find yourself happier and spending money on fuel when you get the best Bang for your Buck…..
Until next time, don´t forget to kiss your fish….
Master Baiter´s has changed its location to a larger shop located directly in front of Dock D in the shops behind the grassy area in the Puesta Del Sol complex half way between the Oxxo and Las Palomas Restaurant. Come in and get your PV Mirror there and say hello to Stan. Please tell your friends where they can find the Mirror and of course Master Baiter´s.
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That´s about it for now from PV… Until next time, don´t forget to kiss your fish!
Master Baiter´s Sportfishing & Tackle is located in Marina Vallarta on the Boardwalk in front of Dock D. Facing the water turn to your right and we´re down four doors or so from Las Palomas the 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 Web page: http://www.MasterBaiters.com.mx
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