Los Cabos, Mexico: Spring Fishing Bonanza

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Striped marlin often congregate to feed on bait schools in the waters off Mexico’s Los Cabos region in the spring.
Gary Graham

The Los Cabos region, at the tip of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, is a sport fishing sanctuary that attracts loyal anglers from around the world. The famous tourist destination includes Cabo San Lucas with its sprawling marina and easy access to the merging Pacific Ocean and Sea of ​​Cortez, as well as the Eastern Cape region a few miles north on the sparkling southeast shores from Baja.

These waters are home to an incredible wealth of marine life, including game fish ranging from billfish, mahi and wahoo in the blue offshore waters to inshore roosters and groupers. Here are some of the fishing opportunities you’ll find around Los Cabos in the spring.

striped marlin jump
The acrobatic striped marlin can reach weights over 200 pounds, but most weigh less than 150 pounds. They represent one of the biggest attractions among anglers visiting the Los Cabos area.
Gary Graham

striped marlin mania

Few other fish draw anglers to the Cabo area quite like the striped marlin. Although this species feeds year-round in these waters, the best time to fish for striped marlin is from February to the end of June. While stripers can spawn anywhere, one of the best places to find the acrobatic swordtail in spring is the Golden Gate Bank, 15 miles north of Cabo San Lucas on the Pacific side, where the lifts of water create rich waters that attract sardines and Pacific mackerel. You might find a school of these marlins attacking a dense pack of bait on the surface, and well-placed live bait like mackerel or caballito (Mexican scad) will often attract immediate attention.

school of birds
When discovered offshore, groups of feeding frigatebirds, gannets, gulls, pelicans and terns are a sure sign that striped marlin and other pelagic predators are driving schools of baitfish to the surface.
Gary Graham

bird brain

To be clear, the striped marlin surface feeding activity described above occurs on every trip. On many voyages, crews spend time trolling and, at the same time, searching the horizon for the tell-tale clouds of birds soaring above schools of sardines and other baitfish. brought to the surface by voracious striped marlin and other pelagic fish. When a boat crew finds these birds they swoop to the spot, and once within casting distance the anglers throw live bait into the fray, often producing multiple hookups followed by releases – a tremendous opportunity for anglers to get their best catch of billfish. and release totals.

Free a rooster
The rooster is one of the most prized inshore fish that anglers can catch in the spring along the beaches of the Los Cabos area.
Gary Graham

Other targets

Striped marlin might catch the eye offshore, but there are plenty of other spring fishing opportunities in this area, including dorado, yellowfin and wahoo, often found in the same offshore waters.

Near the sandy beaches of the Sea of ​​Cortez on the Eastern Cape, anglers can also target roosters in the spring. The unique comb-like dorsal fin of this fish slices through the water when the rooster attacks schools of baitfish. Roosters often behave like striped marlin, feeding on the surface.

When roosters don’t show up on the surface, one of the most effective techniques for finding them is to slowly drag live bait such as mullets or sardines along beaches. Other inshore gamefish such as Pacific jack crevalle and sierra mackerel join the feeding frenzies near shore. Both of these species greedily bite anything that moves, including trailing cedar plugs, tuna feathers, and Rapala dive plugs in a variety of colors.

Other species to consider in the spring include California yellowtail, cabrilla (leopard grouper) and pargo (Spanish for various species of snapper). These delicious fish can be found along rocky shoreline areas and will easily strike live bait caught near the bottom.

Cabo San Lucas Marina
The expansive Marina Cabo San Lucas serves as home to a number of sport fishing boat charter operations serving visiting anglers.
Gary Graham

Cabo Launch Points

Los Cabos Airport in San Jose del Cabo serves both Cabo San Lucas and the East Cape, and it’s less than three hours by plane from most major airports in Southern California. A transfer to Cabo San Lucas takes less than an hour, while the drive to Cape East takes about an hour.

Cabo San Lucas has a huge bustling marina; IGY Marina is the largest resident operator with 380 slips, many filled with sport fishing boats to meet the needs of anglers wishing to charter. Hotels ranging from budget properties to 5-star luxury properties surround the marina and make it easy to walk to your charter boat for an early morning departure.

On the other hand, the Eastern Cape has no marinas. Instead, each resort has its own fleet of sport fishing boats that anchor in the generally calm waters in front of the resorts. Some properties build small piers where passengers can embark and disembark, while others use pangas to ferry guests to and from larger boats.

fish release
Marlin anglers who visit the Los Cabos area in the spring often experience phenomenal fishing for striped marlin, dorado (mahi), yellowfin, and wahoo.
Gary Graham

Charter Options

Back in Cabo San Lucas, for more than four decades the Ehrenberg family ran the Pisces Sport Fishing charter operation in Marina San Jose del Cabo. Their boats feature premium rods and reels spooled with fresh line, available in various sizes of trolling outfits from 30 to 80 pounds. They also provide bait fishing gear with a 30 or 50 pound test line, as well as lures, leader, terminal tackle and more.

“Pisces Sport Fishing reached record pace in 2022,” says Rebecca Ehrenberg, Vice President of Fish Conservation, “In January, our fleet released 2,361 marlin, with excellent catches of 315 tuna and 181 dorado ( mahi), combined with 282 wahoo and other coastal species. Our reservations through June are filling up fast. Our spring season should be outstanding.

Read more : Fishing in Cabo San Lucas

Mackerel of the Sierras
The Sierra Mackerel offers excellent lightweight tackle for anglers visiting the Los Cabo area in the spring.
Gary Graham

Few destinations can match the Los Cabos area for the remarkable array of spring fishing opportunities for catching saltwater fish.

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