Check out the Fish you might just catch off Loreto!
Homex First Yellowtail & more Tournament March 27
Homeowners Gene Setka & Lew Clark walked away $2000 in prize money!!!
Additional Homeowners Mike Casey, Steve Giovenco & Kaz went home with $500 bucks.
March 15 2011 Fish report!!!
Gene & Janie got yellows!
Janie and I went out fishing with Pauncho today – caught eight yellowtail, two about 35 lbs. We started at the north end of Carmen and then went south along Carmen maybe only about a quarter of the way down Carmen. I think Pauncho called it Parrot point or something like that. We caught our bait off Coronado (south east side) – probably 30 mackeral. No wind at all – quite hot at +30C. Off to the gigglin dolphin for dinner.
Dec.1 Fish repot by Bill Loreto Fishing is ON for 2011!!!!
Laurie and I have been living in Loreto full time for over 5 years now. We walk the beach with the dogs every day, starting just before sunrise. We are very attuned to water temps, air temps, seasonal changes, birds, bait, etc..
That said, it looks like the fishing will be WAY better here this year than last.
Last year was the worst in 15 years, almost exclusively due to weird water temps. We had a very mild winter (warm air, little wind) and the water was 5-10 degrees warmer than usual... then we had a very mild summer (less hot, less humid) and the water was 10 degrees cooler than usual. The seasonal bait never really arrived, and neither did the birds or the fish.
For this year, air temps have been dropping more rapidly than usual, and the winds started early. Water temp is already below 70F, which is perfect for early December. The winds help to "turn over" the water column, mixing the warm surface with the cooler deeps. If all goes well, we will have 62F water by the end of the month.
We have been seeing more and more birds over the last 3 weeks, but today (1 December) it was off the chart. HUGE bird piles, over 1,000 birds, less than 100 meters from shore. In particular, the migratory birds we call "All Togethers" are already here in force... they follow the bait, and the bait is here! The 25#-40# Yellowtail are already here in good numbers down deep, and all of this bodes well for an off the chart surface run in March and April.
If you are unfamiliar with Loreto waters, this area is a "hinge" area for water temps. South of Loreto=warmer water, North of Loreto=cooler water. You all know you are looking for temperature gradients to find the bait and the feeding fish. This area has the best gradients north of Cabo (where Pacific and Sea of Cortez meet), and this is why the fishing is usually so amazing in this area.
It is already good, I predict an off-the-chart Yellowtail season. Hopefully this will lead to normal temps for summer and a return of the famous Loreto Dorado fishing. Airfares are available from LA for under $200, or just drive on down. It is a great drive down the Baja, just 14 hours south of San Diego.
Oct.30 The fishing is beginning to taper off more than it was. Last week we caught 6 Dorado 20-30lb.8 Sailfish and 2 Marlin.
This week 3 smaller Dorado and 1 Sailfish. This was all at the 28 spot north east of Loreto. A few Wahoo ,south end of Catlina. One boat got 6 and we got 0 ,hit and miss on them. The Yellowtail are still here, as always, but no Cabria.
If you are coming you had better hurry as it is fading fast. Mark Jacobs
May 22 Windy and nothing around, but we perservered! Needle fish swared the waters! Will try again on May25-27. Caught 1 small Pargo on the backside of Coranado.
May 20 Saw Steve Rand in AV 064 & Kaz in the Blue Whale out in front of the Inn & Rock
catching big triggerfish & a few lonely puffers. Caught on old shrimp & frozen sardines.
April 10 Killer day fishing today. Pancho Romero is a pangero that we’ve fished with before. Really nice person and speaks reasonable English. Michele has fished with Pancho solo years ago and caught 21 fish with assistance. This guy has patience! We targeted cabrilla today and caught ~ 35 fish. Had a blast fishing Punta Lobos close to the rocks. Saw two ‘golden’ cabrilla jumping. This is a sub-species or race of cabrilla that is a beautiful yellow-gold. Doug says they look like goldfish. Guess so. Most people let them go as there are not many. Punta Lobo(s) is at the northern tip of Isla Carmen. We were fishing inshore close to the rocks with live bait, sardines. Spinning gear worked best for placing your casts. Lots of action in the early morning before the sun came up over Carmen, and then tapered off as the sun cleared away the cabrilla’s hiding places. They were hitting the surface hard after the live bait (no swivel, no weight, just hook tied to line with sardine). The cabrilla averaged in the 5-15lb range. Great fun.We’ve fished with Pancho on-and-off for years. He’s highly recommended if you’re interested in trying another pangero. The smoker fires off Tuesday after brining tomorrow.
Went out last Sunday and caught 8 big yellowtail (35-35#), a really large cabrilla (15-20#), and 2 amber jacks (first for me). The small AJ was ~35-40# and the big boy was weighed at 59#! Went out yesterday again with a slow start catching bait, then slow fishing between Carmen and Coronado Islands. Eventually joined boats out at Punta Lobos and ended up with 11 yellowtail averaging 30-40#. Susan has now put a moratorium on yellowtail. I’m driving into Loreto this morning with filets to sell/trade to the fish vendor. If this works, I can keep fishing! Bruce Henderson
Feb. 17 We fished out of Puerto Escondido and had to really work to catch fish - but it was a fun day on the water. The trip cost a base price of $200.00 plus tip and bait. There was no bait being caught down south - so Manuel Torres left Juncalito at 4:15am for Loreto marina to buy bait and was back at Puerto Escondido to pick us up at 6:15. How many guides do you know that would do that? His panga is 25ft ( I think) with a 150 - 4 stroke that is fast when needed. Had a great time fishing with Bruce. We not only caught fish - but had plenty of laughs and watched a whale giving birth to her young. I jigged a lot. As a group we caught 5 nice yellowtail, 4 cabrilla and one nice pinyo bass. I think Bruce really enjoyed Manuel Torres. Your ears must have been burning - we mentioned you often!!!
We went fishing yesterday - Lowell and my brother in law, and I went out with Gabriel. EPIC DAY!!! 8 BIG yellowtail - up to the mid 30s and a large cabrilla - and through by 11:00. We hooked several more - but were broken off. All the fish were caught off the reef at the north end of Coronado. Did not even travel to San Bruno.
Feb.3 Went to San Bruno on a rough day windy & large swells but caught some nice yellows 22-28 pounds & lost 6. Then took them into town to be smoked!!! Picked them up two days later, yum!!! Big mackeral and a late start but also a long time between fish.
Jan.31, 2010 I went out Sunday with Chuck Miller on his 18 ft boat. We bought sardines - but everyone with mackeral were catching fish. No fish on sardines. I switched to a butterfly jig and caught a nice cabrilla and a 25+ pound yellowtail. YES - the big fish are definately in. Mike Casey AV15
Jan 26, 2010 Ok so a group of 4 of us hit the water, got sardines and headed out for some little Yellows. We lost 2 at the first stop, regrouped and to the south side of Coronado got 5 there. Then went back to the north side between the mainland and Coronado and hit 15! Every bait was a fish and we threw some back. Done by 10:30! All under 10 pounds. Took some over to LaPalapa for a great dinner. For 60 pesos a person they will prepare it any way you want.
2010 Fishing will be good just waitting for the weather & a boat and that will happen soon!
I tryied to get a fishing license and they don't have them to issue yet! Iwas told to come back Monday. If you have the pink day passes you will need to get the new 2010 pink day passes & they are dated & they are 25 pesos now. Happy fishing.
Dec. 30 Ramon took clients out last week and they are still catching 8-10lb. yellow tail and even a few late-season dorado!
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - Sept. 1 Eliisa Stowell FN 136
Back side of Coronado, 2 sailfish and one Dorado, medium size, with dead bait.
We started out catching bait easily this morning. Then we headed out to Dorado grounds and on the way started seeing Sailfish tails - we pulled up to two tails, tossed a big bait toward them and off it went - 1/2 hour later I boated a 140 lb. Sailfish. My first billfish of any kind.
Then we searched for the seaweed patches and couldn't find a thing. We motored for over an hour and the north wind came up and it got a little rough.
Eventually we saw some boats on a weed patch with every body hooked on Dorado. The bite was wide open and we must have hooked more than 15 fish. I caught two on my fly rod and luckily they were under 15 lbs because I don't think I could have boated a bigger
one on that light rod.
We fished until the bite cooled and started trolling feathers to see if we could hook another Sailfish. We got a call on the radio and another school of Dorado had been located up ahead. When we arrived there were fish all over the place and we must have hooked and released 10 more fish.
Finally we moved on to find Sailfish but every time we put the feathers in the water two Dorado would hook up. We couldn't get away from them!!
This was a quite a morning on the water - we were done before noon and headed back in.
We're going back tomorrow to target Sailfish exclusively because the freezer is full of filets. Steve Gilmore
Big eye mackerel were the choice of bait today as we were after the
early-returning dorado. Fortunately, we found plenty of bait just outside
of the marina. Loaded up our tank and headed east into the sunrise. We
motored past Isla Carmen which is about 17 miles north-northeast of the
marina, plus another 3 miles or so until Ramon's internal GPS said to troll.
He had heard that another boat caught several dorado in this location
yesterday. So, we hooked up our first bait and started to troll. It's at
that point, just as our lines first hit the water, that Ramon's mental
checklist did not come up with an essential, our gaff. It was likely
hanging comfortably back in the bodega with the other fishing supplies. So,
as we cast around the panga for anything that would help bring in our
forthcoming and so-lively dorado, my daughter Michele and Ramon hit upon the
creative land-'em or bust idea of sacrificing our mop for its handle and
strapping on one of my trusty 'cedar' lures for its large hook.
Naturally as mopzilla was being created, its Alive!, both trolling lines
went taught and started to sing. With his final mop windings tightened,
Ramon grabbed one of the singing rods and I the other as we both had the
live-wire feeling of dorado on the line. Our lines sizzled and snapped out
of the water as the dorado jumped and tail-walked across the sea's surface.
After a good fight, Ramon's dorado was ready to land. I left mine
well-hooked but in the water as dorado are curious and one potentially
feeding attracts others.
Now was the real test for the mopzilla gaff. Ramon's fish was in the
25-30lb range, decent sized for an early season dorado. With consummate
skill, Ramon brought the dorado near our panga to gaff, and admittedly with
more than a single try, was able to gaff and land our first fish of the day.
Mopzilla proved its worth and saved the day!
Leaving my fish in the sea, we were able to attract and land three other
dorado. Finally, when we attracted no other dorado it was time for my fish
to come aboard. Or so I thought. As I put pressure on the line, out goes
the line singing the song that every fisherman loves to hear. However,
after a good fight, a solid 35lbs of dorado was gaffed by mopzilla and
landed. Our fifth dorado in less than an hour on location! Beautiful.
Well, the limit is two dorado per person, and we had five. We needed only
one more for a full boat, but even with ice dorado are more delicate and
sensitive to heat than other fish so we started to troll home. Three other
dorado were hooked on the way and expertly released at a distance. We were
back in the marina before 11AM with our fish, our story of mopzilla, and a
mental note to get the @#&^%* gaff before our next adventure in the Sea of
Cortez. Bruce and Michele Henderson
May 16, Talked with two groups at the new pool this afternoon who respectively fished yesterday and today. Both groups caught 5+ dorado near Isla Carmen (not out s far anymore), all fish in the 25-35lb range. Michele and I are going out with Ramon Thursday. Will let you how it goes. Bruce A. Henderson
April 7, I think we were about 35 miles south - I thought the island was Catalina;
we came around the east end of the island and exited on the west side. The bait
was a lot easier; we probably had 25 mackerel in 20 minutes. The water was
about 80 feet deep, we stayed off the island 400 - 500 yards - we didn't
anchor but the wind was blowing one way and the currant was going the
opposite direction and we just sat in the same spot for hours. I would say
the yellowtail were 25 - 40 lbs (more bigger than small). We have a few pics
but we had to go and eat one of the fish last night in town (it only cost
270 pesos for four at Tio Lupe).
March 30,Out on a reef about 10/12 miles north of the island; there were 35 boats fishing in this very small area. Yes it was for the boat – Janie was burning her nose on the bow, Pancho was untangling the birdsnest in Carter’s reel and I was losing them in the rocks. Actually Rob and I lost maybe 10 in the rocks – it was our form of catch and release.
March 16, Captain Mark, Eugene, Eric and Kaz got 2 yellows south of Porto Escondido. Bait was scarce but the 24 pounders were around, we just needed more bait,
July 5 - 8, 2009
Our 21st Dorado Tournament returns to beautiful Loreto.
The Desert Inn again will be our headquarters. For reservations contact them directly at 011-52-613-135-0025. Mention you are with Vagabundos and you will receive a room discount. Boat rental contacts are Loreto Fishing Coop, for which contact Alejandro Magana directly, he speaks English, at 011-52-613-135-1664. Also, Arturo’s Sportfishing, 011-52-613-135-0022, email: email@example.com, website. Registration will be on Sunday, July 5, the three-day tournament on Monday, July 6 to Wednesday, July 8 and the Awards Banquet the last night. Grand prizes this year will equal the great prizes awarded last year. For those guys/ladies who are not fishing or fishing every day, we would appreciate your help at the weigh-in, or with tickets at the registration, photos or other tasks. Contact Leader Paulette Gochie in advance, if possible. If you are interested in traveling down with a buddy or group, check with Vag HQ (800) 474-2252. Registration fees will be determined. Call Vag HQ to sign up and pay the fee.
Early lodging reservations are a must, and you are on your own for them. A list of hotels, phone and fax numbers is below. Panga reservations are on your own, also.
Tournament Reservations can be made by calling HQVDM at (800) 474-BAJA (2252).
March 10, saw 2 boats go out, one being the Mark & Eugene dream team boat, going south out of Puerto Escondito! They got a few mackerel and saw a calm sea but were skunked. Others earlier in the week were shut out as well. The Ponga team of Kaz & son Ryan had a great experience just out of Loreto. We started out at 6:30 from the marina. Got a few mackerel outside the jetty mixed with some crazy croaker looking thing and some barracudas. So then we went in between Carmen & Coronado and caught lots of macks and orange cod. Then we went about 12 miles north and 10 out. There were some commercial long-liners that our captain used his radio to contact and 25 other pongas joined in the hunt. It was a later bite, our first being about noon. Then we were rewarded by 3 lovely yellows about 44 inches long and 31,32 & 33 pounders. Great weather & a slight wind! Ramon has his own boat & brothers & cousins who fish as well cell 613-100-2937.
March 1, many often wonder what can you catch off the rocks or down the coast a bit. We I have a 3 man inflatable kayak and I catch Cabrilla (sea bass), Pargo (trigger fish) both fun to catch and larger ones good to eat! I freeze sardines left over from a real fishing trip!
This week we had 5 days with good weather conditions, the temperatures going from 57 to 83 F. In the last 3 to 4 weeks we had a big yellow fish slowly, since last Tuesday we had a yellow biting at the water surface in the northern part of the island Carmen couple miles on the reef name 50, here are some of the captured, and weighing between 20 to 28 pounds. Also today we had yellowtails catches on the reef of San Bruno, 15 and 20 miles north of Loreto and the weight of 20 to 28 pounds. Most of the fishing boats went to the Coronado Island today where they captured small yellow, weighing between 10 to 15 pounds. On the eastern side of the island is where they have captured, Lobos, Lajas and Lagrimas. The bait used for catching Yellowtail at the Coronado Island is the sardine and for the other yellowtail spots are used mackerel and we are catching on the east of lighthouse of Lagrimas on Coronado Island. We show a picture with Juvencio a fishing guide from us, with two yellows from Coronado Island. Cabrilla and Snappers, is being captured so occasionally some pieces in the same areas of Yellowtail. Mackerels and Spanish Mackerels, few miles out from the port of Loreto and out side of Coronado Island few, miles from the light house on the east. Or you can buy on the bait boat, 10 pieces for 15 usd, 15 for 20 and 20 for 25. Loreto news, Very soon we will have in Loreto hotels, tour operators and trailer park licenses available every day of the week. Truthful Fishing Report in Loreto Baja, Mexico. Arturo’s Sport Fishing Fleet Licensed dealer at Hotel La Pinta, at Inn Loreto Bay Hotel. www.arturosport.com firstname.lastname@example.org Phone 011-52-613 - 135 - 07 - 66 Fax 011-52-613 - 135 - 00 - 22
Feb.6. We were out about 1/4 mile from shore towards the north end of Coroando Is where all the boat from all of the guides gathered on this particular day. We used live sardines and either still fish or trolled. It has been windy every afternoon and fishing times have been short and early. Yellowtail 7, barracuda 2, bonita 1. What are we going to do with all of these fish.. ho hum-----freezer stuffed as are we. Yo seester and D. la reina de las pascadores.
Feb.4, Went out with "Dubis". His Boat is "Polar Bear" with canvas top and covered motor etc. Met him at 6. He was cleaning his boat with a mop. I liked that sign, Went into harbor to have sardine man jump on our boat and give us 2 batches with net, then we headed out on a beautiful calm morning. Next three days are supposed to be calm. About 10 other boats came to the same spot off of Coranado close to main land shore 300 yards out. We could see the bottom, And THEN I caught the first yellowtail and then another. Dennis one then me and it was 4 to 1. Then 4 to 3 , then me 6 to 4 then he caught a sea bass and then a trigger fish which they use for ceveche and in the meantime I caught 3 birds and Dennis 1 bird. (pollo de mar) We caught 2 yellowtail more for Dubis family and headed back at 10:30. It was more fun than ever but they fight so much and were so heavy I could barely, barely reel in but I did. Only lost one. We were so excited and are going again tomorrow at 6--same place. They were all bet 12-16 lbs and so strong. I am glad I had been going to fitness class. We followed him to his fathers house where he cleaned the fish for us in the back by the laundry. We met mama and papa who had been a fishing captain for 30 years. We also met Ramon this morning but he was taking 2 others out. Best part was that "Dubis" only charged us $150 for both of us in that we will go tomorrow and maybe another day. But fish today weighed about 30 lbs of meat and we can only take 50lbs on plane back but will obviously fill your freezer too unless I eat it all.
So So Fun. Still smiling.
Jan 17, Saw beautiful skies welcome us on Saturday morning. We trolled for mackerel bait near the marina but found nothing, so we moved out to deeper water and jigged for Bigeye. After 45 minutes we had 30 nice baits and sped to the reef between the islands. The sea was calm with a small swell and no wind.
When we arrived we noticed several boats hooked up on big Yellowtail. We dropped our first baits and within minutes we had a double hook up. All around us boats had doubles and even triples . . the Yellowtail bite was wide open and it was in a frenzy.
The bite continued for hours!! All the fish were over 30 lbs with several exceeding 35 up to 40 lbs. Extremely hard fighters a few pulled us into the rocks and cut the line. No matter - just drop another bait and hold on, you knew what was coming soon.
We could barely get a rest between fish and our arms and backs were aching. At 11:00 the we had two 5 fish limits in the boat and we headed in. Eveyone else had limits too. Unbelievable fishing. Steve Gilmore
Jan.7 2009 Water temp was 65F and winds were calm. Seas were smooth and easy. We went out just offshore of the old whorehouse north of town to catch big-eye mackerel for bait. Got a late start and only caught 9 mackeral (they are easiest to catch just as the sun rises), but went off to one of the yellowtail (jurel) hot spots. One of the ‘hot spots’ for yellowtail is between Carmen Island and Coronado Island. South of Coronado lining up with the north of Carmen and triangulating between these and Danzante Island to the south. Caught 4 yellowtail on both iron (#5 blue/white) and mackerel with 8-ounce weights and 80# leader on light to medium gear. Our largest was 40#’s! Al caught 2 large cabrilla and Bill landed the largest bonita we have ever seen here. Bait expended, enough fish in the cooler, and back in the marina by noon!
Dec. 20 Al Graichen, Bruce Henderson & Kaz tried there luck against high winds and a nice size swell. Captain Ramon said to rough to go to Carmen or to go north so we settled for a nice couple of spots on the south side of Coranado. We caught Cabrilla, Pargo & 1 small Yellowtail. It was still a great day, except for popping a tire on the trailer hauling the boat out.
Dec.13 saw the Kazman, Bruce Henderson and Michelle having a smorgasbord of fish. We were joined by a bait netter that in 2 throws had our bait tank filled with sardines. Then we headed north to Doctors point, then went to the northwest spot on Coronado and work over to the northeast. We caught small yellowtail, pargo, snapper, barracuda, greenling, and the largest fish of the day was a cabrilla. Every cast was a hit and you never knew what you were bringing up! We brought home 14 fish drop of 4 at La Palapa for a great meal of fish tacos, pan fried filets cooked in garlic & butter, beans & rice, and of coarse margaritas & beer. What a grand day indeed. I will put some pictures up in the photo gallery. Thank you Bruce for a grand day in your ponga on the Sea of Cortez!!!
Went out fishing with a buddy on Thursday Nov.27, caught 4 nice pargo on a submerged pinnacle south of Isla Danzante, outside the Marine Park… all over 20#, caught between 50’-100’ deep using live sardines on a dropper loop with a 3’ steel leader.
A friend of ours caught (6) yellowtail on Monday Nov.24, all over 30#, on the reef between Punta Pulpito and Isla Idelfonse (30 miles north of Loreto)… all caught at 160’ deep, using a dropper loop on 50# test mono with a #5 hook and live mackerel. Bill Doyle
Nov.6 Fishing trip!
We launched with Ramon and his cousin Jose. Two quick casts of the throw net outside the harbor and we had more than enough bait (sardinas) for the day. We went north of Coronado Island. Winds were up a little, but a beautiful sunrise and the promise of a calming day were ahead of us. After a 30-minute quick run to the west side of Coronado, we had some quick hits but nothing on as we trolled north along the shore in about 30-feet of water. After a troll up and back, we ran to the mainland side just off of Doctor’s Point. A reef extends far into the Sea of Cortez here, reaching for Coronado Island. It shallowed up quickly from well over 150 feet to less than 30 feet. Another panga was already on troll and hooking up! We had great success here with the sardinas. We could see water boiling as the bait fish were taken from below, with some surface action and the occasional jumping of our target fish… dorado, yellow tail, and sierra. A bass or two also joined the catch. We filled a large cooler by noon and ran back to the marina.
We found out last week that one of the best things after a morning’s fishing was to drop off fish for dinner at one of the local restaurants. So, again we stopped by La Palapa and gave Carmen some dorado filets for fish tacos and a small sierra for ceviche that evening. Home, a shower and nap, then a Cuban sunrise (I invented this fabulous drink!), perhaps a game of cards, then off to La Palapa that evening for another outstanding meal! We provide the fish and they do the cooking with all sides and trimmings for $5 per person. Margaritas cost (again) more than the meal for all of us! Great fun!
Went out yesterday Oct 19… Sierra & Dorado were going wild up at San Bruno, had a great day, stopped early because no more space to store fish. Bait wise it depends on what you are fishing for… we were fishing for Sierra, using sardines for chum and shiny lures for catching fish. Bait is available for sale at the marina every morning, both mackerel and sardines. There are a number of known “bait holes” where you can catch your own mackerel using “Sabiki” rigs… these you need to learn. Lures are also very good, again depending on what you are fishing for and when. Fishing here has been incredible all this year. Come and get it! Bill Doyle Fisherman
Nov. 30 Went out fishing with a buddy on Thursday… caught 4 nice pargo on a submerged pinnacle south of Isla Danzante, outside the Marine Park… all over 20#, caught between 50’-100’ deep using live sardines on a dropper loop with a 3’ steel leader.
· A friend of ours caught (6) yellowtail on Monday, all over 30#, on the reef between Punta Pulpito and Isla Idelfonse (30 miles north of Loreto)… all caught at 160’ deep, using a dropper loop on 50# test mono with a #5 hook and live mackerel.
Sitting astride latitude 26 north on the Sea of Cortez, Mexico’s famous Loreto sportfishing area enjoys an enviable geographic position, very close to the northern limit of what you could think of as Baja California’s truly “warm water” fishing zone, while only 80 miles north of Loreto--near Punta Chivato--the fishery changes significantly as water temperatures begin to transition more and more toward the cooler ranges of the Midriff Area.
Loreto’s geographic location, sandwiched between the cooler waters of the Midriff Area to its north and the warmer waters of the southern Sea of Cortez, gives it two very pronounced fishing seasons on two very different and highly-prized game fish: dorado in the summer months, and yellowtail in winter.
In summer, the annual northward dorado migration up the Sea of Cortez gets started off East Cape about mid-May. By mid-June, the main mass of dorado is centered in the remote Juanaloa archipelago north of La Paz, and guess what happens in July?
Loreto’s famous July dorado fishing run is a reliable blast of nearly idiot-proof surface action as the always-hungry, golden-hued predators crowd into the channels and just outside the many islands between Punta San Marcial in the south, and Punta Pulpito in the north.
As the Loreto sportfishing area’s water temperatures climb into the low and middle-80s, many of these dorado will actually be headed farther north, up to the Mulege area, and some even penetrate into the Midriff’s cooler waters, but most years, Loreto gets the lion’s share of the catch. Troll live bait if you must, as is the local tradition, but really, almost any method of surface fishing, with almost any kind of lure, will get you dorado limits at these times. If you really want to catch dorado, you can’t do any better than Loreto in July.
By mid-November, though, the summer dorado have largely abandoned Loreto's sport fishing waters (you’ll still snag a few stragglers), and they are in turn replaced in the local fishing action by cool water-loving, deep-dwelling yellowtail, as water temperatures fall back down into the mid-70s and then the mid-60s by January. This Loreto yellowtail “run” is composed of both “home guard” resident fish, and fish that have migrated south from the Midriff and Mulege areas, and it will persist through the winter and into spring, finally tapering off in mid-April.
LORETO YELLOWTAIL--Fishing for Loreto’s yellowtail is a very different proposition from summer dorado fishing for two reasons: wind and depth. By mid-November, the winter “norte” winds can make getting out to the fishing grounds tough or nearly impossible about three or four days per week, and once you get there, the yellowtail are rarely frolicking on the surface like the “easy” dorado, but are down deep near the rocks, where their short but supremely powerful runs cause a lot of lost tackle and cussing among Americans and Mexicans alike.
Unlike the free-swimming dorado, yellowtail are oriented to rocky underwater structure, so, winds permitting, Loreto’s best yellowtail spots tend to be both north and south of town, and around the rocky points on the north, south, and east sides of large Isla Carmen, about 12 miles straight out from the beach. Some yellowtail are also caught around near shore Islas Coronado and Danzante, but these are less abundant and usually smaller, so they are fished mostly when the wind is blowing too hard for longer runs.
As with the dorado, the northern limit for Loreto’s charter fishing pangas is at about Punta Pulpito, roughly 40 daunting miles up the coast. To the south, few sportfishing boats will run farther than Punta Candeleros, about ten miles past Puerto Escondido.
In addition to its famous summer dorado and winter yellowtail, the Loreto vacation area offers seasonally good fishing for a very wide spectrum of species, including offshore marlin, sailfish, and distant yellowfin tuna, and inshore roosterfish, giant needlefish, sierra, pargos, cabrilla, and a host of miscellaneous fish.
But really, these other fine game fish are not the main event for anglers who travel to Loreto, where dorado and yellowtail are the foundation of a large sportfishing fleet of experienced pangueros, well-equipped pangas, and even a few charter fishing cruisers that operate from town and from nearby Puerto Escondido.
Loreto, setting for the first Spanish mission of the Californias established in 1697, is today a well-developed vacation destination for the traveling angler, with a full range of charter fishing boats, hotels, excellent restaurants, an international airport, and services for vacation activities of all kinds, except for night clubs and such.