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Puerto Vallarta News NetworkNews from Around Banderas Bay 

Water Temps Fluctuate, Late Bites Frustrate Early Anglers, Fish are Biting!
email this pageprint this pageemail usStan Gabruk - PVNN
December 25, 2010

For more information about fishing in Puerto Vallarta, visit or email Stan at Catchfish(at)
The way things have been happening around here in Puerto Vallarta’s world famous fishing grounds it´s enough to make you pull your hair out. One day the water temps are down-right frigid, the next day they´re much warmer in the same area. The currents are changing and swirling. We have seen some areas with dirty water, especially in the bay. We’ve seen areas that are normally fishing machines, disappoint anglers as the available species thumb their nose at baits. Tiny bait is everywhere, where as Whales may love this, the fisherman is having to face challenges cross the spectrum of their experience. But no worries amigo, there is nothing new about this sort of thing in the world of Fishing! Experienced Captains pay off in fish. Others, well talk is always as cheap as the boat they put you on!

For the last few weeks I´ve been telling the fishing public that the water temps have dropped into frigid ranges and fishing basically sucked in a nice way. But the good thing about our fishing grounds is that no matter what conditions we have at the moment, if you can be patient, things will always get better and they have. The best thing a person can do is keep up with the fishing reports, and there aren´t that many coming out of Marina Vallarta, about things like what time the bite is happening! Right now many of the locations you would head out to are having a late bite. That means if you are one of those break of dawn guys, no matter what, you´ll be spending time on the water when you don´t have to. More on this later…

Those looking for Moby Dick are going to be out of luck, Black Marlin have all but disappeared. There seem to be a few Blue Marlin out there, but very few hook-ups. Striped Marlin are still north by San Pancho or even farther north and there are no guarantees by any stretch of the imagination you´ll come back with one. So goes the tale of Sportfishing in Puerto Vallarta. But if you can find a warm streak, anything, and I do mean anything is possible. Sailfish have been hanging out in this same area but are small. One nice thing about heading north, there are lots of options along the way. Your worst case scenario is Dorado (yes I said Dorado) and Snappers, which both taste great. Rooster fish are in the structure areas around Sayulita so you have several spots and possibilities heading up north.

Now if you are one of those guys who fantasize about a 200lb Yellowfin Tuna, they are at the Tres Maria Islands, the locals just call them ¨ The Islands¨, but we wouldn´t want you to think Marietta Islands. These islands are 80 miles one way and will run you at least 14 hour days and a minimum of $1,400.0 usd on a decent sized boat. Super pangas will bounce your fillings out of your head, but they will do the job for a much better price. So it´s all your call amigos. If you´re looking for a Monster Yellowfin Tuna, this is where you have to go until spring has sprung!

El Banco and Corbeteña are still areas that have had very few visitors these past weeks and the reports from these areas are sparse. But you can always depend on Cubera Snappers over 50lbs at both locations. Now you can find Snappers closer in, so there really is no need to burn the fuel money heading to these locations. You’d be better off heading to the Marietta Islands…. But like I said, things can change in a heartbeat so stay tuned.

Speaking of the Marietta Islands, there have been herds of fish all over the place. Many reports of Anglers hitting these abundant Rooster fish (40lb s), African Pompano (50lbs), Sierra Mackerals 20+ Lbs), Snappers (30 lbs and up), Skip Jack Tuna, Jack Crevalls (large), Bonito and the list just goes on. In f act the other day there were Sea Bass out around the reefs and we very seldom see Sea Bass around here.

Now when I lived in Southern California we saw lots, but they are a cold water fish, so this should tell you about the cold currents. But if you´re lucky enough to hook into one, they are like 30 to 40 lbs and man do they taste good! Now don´t expect to find these, I expect them to disappear as fast as they appeared, but how nice it would be if one hit! But here is the secret, if you are out there early, like before 12:00 right now, and that is pretty much all the fishing grounds, you are going to have to have a lot of patience. For some reason, and I wish I knew why, the bite is happening mid day and it has been like that for about a week now. My clients have been discovering that a later bite means they can sleep in a little, have breakfast and still come in with the Blue Plate Special. There are a lot of good tasting fish out here right now, so keep this secret to yourself!

At the point of Punta Mita we´ve seen a real increase in the Snapper action where they’ve been running in the 45 to 50 lb range and this is a six hour day, but again, make sure you are there during the bite, or it will you who got bit! Dorado are here as well and will take anything shinny at the right time of day.

Inside the bay there has been some arm burning action if again, you´re in the right spot. One of those spots to think of that goes ignored is MaJawas (pronounced Ma-HA-wase).. Not Majawitaus (I know I spelled that one wrong). The area south at the river mouths, and in the Nuevo Vallarta Area, where the fresh water meets the salt water has seen Roballo, or Snook in English in the 20 to 45 lb range and there are very few fish in the bay that will taste as good as these. With white meant and a fierce attitude they like to hang around the surf line. Diamond jigs will work well, Rapallas, even a Popper will work for these babies and the time of day is not an issue with them for the moment… You can even fish for them from the shore if you have the equipment.

On a side note, while in Puerto Vallarta make sure you visit The Village in Marina Vallarta, with Restaurant row and 150 shops and services it’s Puerto Vallartas other Malicon (board walk in English) and should be on your list of places to visit.

Changing gears again, many times people will come into the shop and ask if there is anybody that smokes fish? Well until recently I had to tell them NO, I don´t know of anyone, but now I do! There are these two ladies who just moved to Buceras that are smoking fish and if you are interested in having your catch smoked, they have a 30 kilo minimum, about seventy pounds worth. They will also vacuume pack your fish and they´re the only ones I know of in the Vallarta Area that do this. They will come pick it up and deliver after the process is done. I don´t have prices on hand, but if this is something you might be interested in the call Caren or Heather from "Made of the Sea LLC" at: (044) 322 136 7365 or email them at: madeofthesea(at) for more details.

Stan Gabruk is the owner of Master Baiters Sportfishing and Tackle in Marina Vallarta. He came to Puerto Vallarta for a brief, three-week vacation and never left. You can find Stan at his Master Baiters Sportfishing shop in Marina Vallarta, located on the boardwalk down from the lighthouse next to Tikul Restaurant. For more information about fishing in Puerto Vallarta, visit or email Stan at Catchfish(at)

Click Here to learn more about fishing in Puerto Vallarta with Master Baiter's.

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