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Old 08-11-2013, 02:41 PM
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boswell boswell is offline
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Default boswell's 2013 Cedros report



(Apparently, talented anglers caught bass. This was over 10 pounds! Nice shootin', Duke!)

I basically stopped working by noon Thursday. I had already gone (twice) to tackle stores to load up on 6 ½ inch swimbaits, 7/0 and 8/0 circle hooks, Sabikis and assorted hard baits for the trip. I also bought a Lexa 300 (which ended up being used to make bait, see below) and a Super Seeker from Wahoodad (which performed flawlessly, see below).

After a number of mishaps (including forgetting the Costco carrier), I finally left town around 1:30 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. The drive down was utterly uneventful and traffic-free. I checked in to the Official Sr. Tuna Border motel (the Best Western Americana) in San Ysidro and shot over to my future pangero mates, Khammy and Hazman. We did show and tell until George and Mikey showed up. Unfortunately, we didn’t hook up with Trianglist/Jerry, who also checked in.

Khammy, Larry, Mikey, George and I left at around 6 for Phil’s Barbecue, where we encountered a wait of nearly two hours. I get the attraction – the portions are gigantic. Frankly, the sauce was a little too sweet for my taste. That didn't stop me from eating all of it, anyway.
So much for my vow to try to stay as pescatarian as possible during the trip (see below again).

At around 7 a.m., we made the haj to the parking lot at the border, where we met up with the rest of the crew – Mark T and his son Kevin; Lloyd/Southpaw; Jerry/Trianglist; Alex/Zhaljave; and The Flying Barto’s replacement "Stefan," who turned out to be – Barto. This year, rather than one Sprinter, we had two vans. We hopped in, went through Mexican immigration and customs (where we purchased out tourist visa and changed money) and made the bee-line to Ensenada. We stopped at La Salina to pick up Duke and I met his lovely wife and his equally beautiful daughters. We made another stop in Ensenada for tacos and made it to the military airport. While there, we got hit with varying fees depending on the weight. While my luggage was less than 35 lbs. (and theoretically, not subject to any charge), I paid 150 pesos for the luggage. Bienvenidos a Mexico.

We got to the Island at around 3, checked in, met Orquidea and Jose, and were fishing by 4. Khammy, Larry and I decided to try for calico a little north of town for no takers. George and crew wisely decided to make bait and hit the yellowtail. They landed limits (or near limits) of the biggest yellowtail of the trip - over 50 lbs! We returned to dinner of pozole (hominy) and pork. As I was starving, I added to my sins of beef rib/chicken the night before by digging in. Of course, I finished it with the equally non-vegan (and delicious) rice pudding.

First, let me thank everyone that came; it was a really great trip. I didn't take a lot of photos, but here are some:

Khammy getting ready:


Barto, Jerry and Mikey saving up their strength:



George, Mikey and Duke on the water:



Alexis, our pangero:



My biggest yellowtail; maybe 42 lbs:



Larry's biggest yt: more like 46 lbs:



The view from our room:



On Tuesday, we decided to try to head out to San Augustin for calico. We didn’t get more than a few miles past the bait grounds – the wind was horrible (and stayed that way throughout the trip, other than around town). We hit a couple of kelp paddies for nothing. While we were out there, our pangero Alexis (all of 18) noticed a couple of guys from the "cooperativo" fishing conch. Alexis’ dad is a remember and Alexis apparently knows them all. The conch fishing consists of a diver down below (the water couldn’t have been deeper than 20 feet) attached to an air hose that transports the conch up. The two guys that remain on the panga shell the conch and throw the shells out. The shells are an effective calico chum. We limited out on calico in about 15 minutes. I also hooked the diver.



After what would be the only successful calico fishing of the trip, we made bait and had spectacular yellowtail fishing, like everyone else. The afternoon bite was a little slower, but we still did o.k. The first day’s total – 6 yellowtail (2 each) between 38 and 44 lbs. In the p.m., we took Barto up to his panga, where Barto and I got hammered on the hour and half drive straight uphill into the wind chop. The calicos weren’t biting for me. Dinner on night two was yellowtail mojo de ajo and it was delicious. The gang engaged in imbibing various tasty adult beverages; I hit the hay by 8:30.

We decided on Wednesday to stick to yellowtail fishing, which was en fuego. I believe our boat count was 7, and I think Larry got his trophy fish that day. We had to move from the south end by the mines to north of town as the seal lions were getting pretty active. By the way, all of our yellowtail were caught on bait (massive mackerels) that we jigged up). I used a JX two speed with 65 lb spectra nad a 50 top shot and I was glad for it. I didn’t use fluoro at all on the trip and I don’t think it mattered. Dinner was a delicious chicken en mole and more frivolities ensued.

Thursday was our last chance at calicos. Unfortunately, the wind never died. We desultorily noodled around and went back to yellowtail fishing, which remained great. I think our count was 5 or 6 for the day. The big dinner was lobster and steak and I ate way too much of both. I was out by 9 p.m. As noted at the beginning of this post, those with talent had no problems catching calicos, and big uns at that. Check out Duke's monster calico at the top of this thread! Awesome fish.

That night, like Amal, I had night visitors. At around 1, I saw shapes (or what the Greeks called "shades"). A 6'4" plus shade (preceded by tobacco fumes) climbed in on the left; a smaller (but equally "relaxed") shade filled in on the right, and a third took a photo. Welcome to La Isla Cedros.


Here's the haul, 485 KG or 1,086 pounds!


The trip back was uneventful (other than the $100 fee for the fish I brought back). Traffic was horrendous going to Mexico, and it took about a half hour after crossing the border to get into the parking lot. We divided fish and split.

I have a handful of quibbles. Please note that these really pale in insignificance to a magnificent job by everyone at the hotel and by the pangeros. First: although we requested collars and bellies, we got none. Moreover, 19 or the 20 or so calico that we caught never made it in our bags. We did, however, receive a handful of bags of fish form George’s panga. It would be nice to make sure that the fish goes where it’s supposed to and in the form requested.

Quibble number two involves lunch. It consisted either of burritos or sandwiches. Period. On one day, even that disappeared from out boat for reasons that we never quite got. I would humbly suggest that in place of the big, hot breakfast, we get cold cereal and/or hard boiled eggs and fruit. In addition to the two burritos or sandwiches for lunch, it would be nice to put out bowls of small packs of Oreos, fruit, hard boiled eggs and/or chips that the guests simply add to the lunch boxes and take with them. This is how most of the La Paz operations handle lunch and it would be great to feel full on the water. On the other hand, breakfasts were really delicious and there was a snack at around 5 at the hotel. In fact, I gained five pounds anyway.

The hotel itself was terrific, even in its 90 percent completed state. Things like handrails, alternate steps, varnishing, etc. need to be (and I am sure, will be) completed. The room was very comfortable and the view is breathtaking.

Let me finish by reiterating how hard Orky, Juana, Fatimah (sp?), Oliver, Jose, Umberto, Ricky, Toro, Jesus y Jesus (aka "Chuy and Dos") worked. The pangeros also worked their tails off for us. I hope I didn't forget anyone as they really made the trip fantastic. George is right: nearly everyone on the Island really acts how I remember Baja was back in the 60s and I was pleased to see that we were equally respectful. I except, of course, Toro's continuing English lessons that Dimitri started last year. Both the teaching methodology and retention by pupil remained unchanged and lessons were constantly given with alacrity.

Let me add a postscript after reading Chuck's post. The yellowtail fishing was the best I've ever encountered in my life. I was so tore up, I was asleep each night by 9. I thought (incorrectly) that I had broken a rib from tucking the road loaded with yellowtail so frequently.

I hope others will chime in with the pieces that I missed. Thanks also to El Jefe de Sr. Tuna for putting this together. I was really sorry to leave and I can hardly wait to return.

Per Duke's request, here's the group photo:



Here's a parting shot taken by Larry of an atomic Cedros sunrise:

Last edited by boswell; 08-25-2013 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 08-11-2013, 03:14 PM
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hazman hazman is offline
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Bos hit it on the head with the report, so I have nothing really to add on the fish part.

The hotel is great but still under minor construction. So I expect it will be excellent by next season. Truly a great place to stay. They do need screens due to the mosquitos but that is planned as part of the final construction.

One minor issue is that don't have bottled water at the hotel, only on the pangas. They do have a 5 gal. dispenser of filtered water in the kitchen but I still would highly encourage them to offer bottled water for sale. There is always the 1% that will get sick from the water.

Great fishing, friends, and accommodations.

Can't wait for next year.

-larry
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Old 08-11-2013, 03:18 PM
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The wind is the only thing that can keep the calicos down at Cedros.

A little kvetching.....what could it hoit...?
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Old 08-11-2013, 04:08 PM
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Mikey Mikey is offline
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A lesson from TB

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Old 08-11-2013, 04:10 PM
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Flying in

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Old 08-11-2013, 04:41 PM
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Dimitri Dimitri is offline
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Looks like George has perfected the "Old guy" technique. Brings a big smile to my face watching both video's. Thanks for the share Mikey.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:14 PM
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Important tip: Don't leave the doors or windows to your room open at night. The mosquitos will eat you (well, Kevin and Larry anyway) alive.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:39 PM
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Thanks to whomever merged the pix with the post!
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkT View Post
Important tip: Don't leave the doors or windows to your room open at night. The mosquitos will eat you (well, Kevin and Larry anyway) alive.
Deet.

I offered it to everyone. I only got bit the first night.
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Old 08-12-2013, 06:21 PM
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What did Bos catch the diver on? Bait, plastic or iron?
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