AN AN­GLER’S PAR­ADISE: CABO COMES THROUGH

HEAD TO LAND’S END ON THE BAJA PENIN­SULA FOR STRIPED MAR­LIN AND MORE

Marlin - - CONTENTS | FEATURES - BY MARK MACKEN­ZIE

Head to Land’s End on the Baja Penin­sula for striped mar­lin and more By Mark MacKen­zie

The ad­ver­tise­ment pro­mot­ing the 2018 sea­son of

Sport Fish­ing Tele­vi­sion was sit­ting on his desk as the show’s pro­ducer (and my boss) Shawn Bean shook his head. “This looks amaz­ing, ex­cept for one small de­tail,” he said. “The main im­age fea­tures a mar­lin, but we’re half­way through film­ing and we haven’t caught one yet. Cabo had bet­ter come through for us.”

As the only mem­ber of the team who had fished out of Cabo San Lu­cas, Mex­ico, I’d con­vinced Bean that the striped mar­lin cap­i­tal of the world was a lock when he was putting to­gether the show’s sched­ule months be­fore. The fall tour­na­ment sea­son in Cabo had pro­duced a stel­lar bite, with an­glers re­leas­ing more than 300 mar­lin dur­ing three weeks in Oc­to­ber. Char­ters were re­port­ing 10 to 15 mar­lin re­leases a day. With the fish­ing that good right be­fore our sched­uled de­par­ture in early Novem­ber, I started get­ting ner­vous that it might not last.

Af­ter an easy day of travel from cen­tral Flor­ida, we landed at the mod­ern Los Ca­bos In­ter­na­tional Air­port in San Jose del Cabo around 4 in the af­ter­noon, where we cleared cus­toms and were greeted with a warm smile and cold cervezas by Ray­mundo “Mundo” Bur­gos. Mundo is an old friend, and owner of Bur­gos Trans­porta­tion; he helped us load our gear as we headed to the Sol­mar Re­sort, our home base for the week. Upon ar­rival, we un­loaded piles of cam­era cases, rod tubes and reel boxes, plugged in enough charg­ers and bat­ter­ies to power a small vil­lage and piled back into Mundo’s Sub­ur­ban. Our first stop was Fish­er­man’s Land­ing, where Jorge Tellez, the restau­rant’s owner and our fish­ing host for the trip, con­firmed the de­tails of the week ahead. Sev­eral hours and sev­eral mar­gar­i­tas later, our plans were set and we headed back to the ho­tel, ready to hit the wa­ter early the next morn­ing.

DAY ONE: SWING AND A MISS

At 6:15 a.m. sharp, we loaded up for the short ride from the Sol­mar Re­sort to the ma­rina, where we boarded the crown of the Gavio­tas char­ter fleet, Tellez’s cus­tom 45-foot Ber­tram, Don Luis. Af­ter a quick stop to pick up some live bait from a panga in the har­bor, Capt. Manuel Ar­ballo had us pointed due east on a course for the Santa Maria Canyon, 9 miles off the coast.

With striped mar­lin be­ing our pri­mary tar­get, we set out a spread of 6- to 10-inch skirted trolling lures on the out­rig­gers and flat lines, and a split-tail mack­erel on the shot­gun line. Two of the most pop­u­lar lure com­bi­na­tions for the Cabo area are the Mean Joe Green, green over black, and petrolero, a com­bi­na­tion of or­ange, red, brown and black. But the skip­ping mack­erel proved to

With Cabo San Lu­cas as a back­drop, one of the Gavio­tas char­ter boats heads to sea for a day of fish­ing (above). Striped mar­lin (right) are the most pro­lific bill­fish species found in these sto­ried wa­ters. They are tar­geted us­ing a wide va­ri­ety of...

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.