May 24, 2024

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The Angler’s Guide to Marlin Fishing at Cabo San Lucas

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Are you looking for an exciting offshore adventure in a tropical setting? If your heart started pumping just thinking about that then you may want to look into Marlin fishing in Cabo San Lucas. Anglers from near and far make their way here almost every day, aiming to have the vacation of a lifetime. And for the locals, well, let’s just say they have their own slice of paradise.

Photo courtesy of Cabo Sportfishing Crew – Blue Tail

Cabo boasts a beautiful oasis of pristine blue waters and massive rock structures. Pair that with deep offshore waters and you have a beautiful, productive location to fish in. Many tourists come from all around the world to have their shot at Marlin fishing in Cabo, blending in with the locals.

When you fish the deep waters around Cabo, you’ll come across areas reaching great depths where there are plenty of undertows, currents, changing tides, and even wavy conditions. These are hotspots for Marlin.

On another good note, you won’t have to worry about any tourists or locals swimming around! These waters are too dangerous for them to travel through. In calm conditions you may have kayakers and smaller crafts nearby so be sure to keep an eye out for them. But all in all, you can sit back and focus on fishing.

There are plenty of opportunities and a variety of places to fish for Marlin when you’re in Cabo, so stay tuned throughout this complete guide!

Why is Cabo a great Marlin fishing spot?

Cabo is known as the “Marlin Capital of the World,” as it holds many schools of these tough fighting fish. A variety of Marlin species call Cabo their home, such as Blue, White, Black, and Striped Marlin. These species all look pretty similar, but their colors and varying fin shapes act as key features to help tell them apart. While some may be a bit smaller than others, they all are still monstrous creatures and put up intense fights.

A closeup of an elderly angler in a blue sweater and green baseball cap holding a large Marlin while sitting on a fishing charter in front of Los Arcos, Cabo San Lucas, on a clear day
Photo courtesy of BlueSea Sportfishing

The largest species of the Billfish family is the Blue Marlin. These fish can grow up to 15 feet long and can weigh up to 1,800 pounds. For anyone that gets out there on a small craft, the fish may be even bigger than their vessel! And for anyone looking to hook the fish of a lifetime, you’re in luck. Cabo is home to many Blue Marlin.

With large fish, you need a big space to hold them, especially if there are a lot involved. That’s why Cabo is a hotspot for Marlin, as the waters provide long stretches of open water. When you get offshore and make your way into the drop-off areas, the depths can reach up to 1,200 feet, perfect for traveling Marlin.

Not only do the deep waters allow for big parties of feisty beasts, but the surrounding waters are very rich in nutrients as well. This is due to the strong currents that stir them up from the bottom constantly. Rich nutrients means diversity, and many organisms are around, boosting the status of the food web. It also shows there are plenty of species around that will attract predators.

With varying species traveling amongst the same waters as Marlin, they, in turn, come across more sources of food and will continue to hang around the area. Especially with large supplies of bait fish, Marlin easily populate Cabo’s waters.

Why do anglers like to target Marlin?

So I’ve talked about their size, but why else do anglers like to target Marlin? Well, for one, it’s fun! Marlin are strong fighters that put up hardy battles, giving anglers a true fishing experience. That may sound vague but you’ll know when you have a Marlin on your line!

A view from behind of three anglers, trying to reel in a Marlin, as it leaps out of the water right next to the boat, with the deep blue waters visible all the way to the horizon on a clear day
Photo courtesy of Wahoo 33′

Not only that but Marlin provide some entertainment too as they make big splashes and leap out of the water, thrashing around. Anglers also get the sense of connecting with the ocean. To target Marlin, you’ll need to spend time on the open blue waters, taking in the surrounding beauty.

Besides the excitement a Marlin fight provides, it’s also a source of delicious meat. Marlin is meat loved by foodies restaurants across the world. And Cabo is no exception. There are a variety of ways to cook it up too, which makes it extra fun to mix up recipes with. If you’re in Cabo and you catch and filet your Marlin, some restaurants may also be able to whip up your meal for you!

Not only is it a tasty meal, but it has numerous health benefits too. Marlin is rich in protein as well as omega three fatty acids, providing for a healthier meal choice. Keep in mind they do contain mercury though and high consumption of that may cause some issues.

How to Go Marlin Fishing in Cabo

As I’ve already mentioned, deeper waters hold the most Marlin but you may find some closer to shore. A couple of key areas in the deeper waters of Cabo are the Gordo Banks, the Golden Gate Bank, Finger Bank, and El Arco. Any area of open water with deeper depths and a strong and quick current may also produce good numbers.

A woman in a red bikini holding a large, heavy-duty fishing rod aboard a charter in the clear waters of the Pacific Ocean on a sunny day, with a rocky shoreline visible in the distance
Photo courtesy of BlueSea Sportfishing

Popular food sources of Marlin include various fish species and squid. If you troll your bait off the back of the boat, whether alive or dead, you’ll probably manage to hook into a Marlin. You can also use artificial lures to try and hook into one.

You’ll increase your chances if you use something large that’s flashy, bright, bold, jiggly, etc. You want to catch the attention of a Marlin that may be lurking deep below. So, if they’re farther away, you’ll need something they can see.

As these are gigantic fish, be sure to have a strong setup. These aren’t your typical saltwater game fish. We’re talking big guys, with some being way larger than any human! The strength of these fish can easily break lines and even rods, so you’ll need one that’s heavy-duty. Most charters will provide this for you so don’t worry. But if you’re planning on bringing your own boat or you want to have your own gear, ensure you have a set-up you can rely on.

Cabo Marlin Fishing Seasons

A group of anglers posing on the deck of a sportfishing boat whiole back on deck in Cabo San Lucas behind a Marlin on a sunny day
Photo courtesy of Marlin Hunter I

Marlin fishing in Cabo is something that can be successfully done year-round. Striped Marlin are always present in Cabo, while other species may come and go. So, no matter the time of the year, you’re sure to be able to locate some, even if the quantity may not be as much. But July through December is prime time, as most Marlin species will be present.

While the exact time of year may vary depending on the Marlin species, most prefer the summer months when the water temperatures are warmer. Yet, Striped Marlin are often more present in winter, as they tend to prefer cooler temperatures.

For all species, you’ll find that morning trips provide better chances, while varying tides don’t really play a significant role. As long as the current is strong, the fish are almost always present. Marlin are also active at night, so you can definitely try it out and see if you have any luck under darkness.

Marlin Fishing Regulations in Cabo

In Mexico, especially Cabo, fishing regulations are a bit different. First, even if you have a valid fishing license in the United States, you’ll have to secure a Mexican fishing license if you plan on fishing in Cabo’s waters. Be sure to gather all the needed certifications before you head to Cabo to avoid any issues.

An infographic featuring the flag of Mexico along with text that says "Mexico Marlin Fishing Regulations: What You Need to Know" against a dark blue background

If you’re using a charter boat to take you Marlin fishing in Cabo, then check with them if they provide fishing licenses. A good number do, so you may not have an issue. But you don’t want to face any difficulties if you aren’t covered.

Something important to note if want to keep your deep sea catch: no matter the species, you can only keep 10 fish per day when deep sea fishing in Cabo. The maximum amount per species is five, however, not all species are allowed to reach this amount. For example, you can only keep one Marlin per boat, no matter the size.

Rules also limit the equipment used to catch your fish and you are prohibited from selling or trading meat. Even when you take your fish in, you’ll be subject to authority checks, even if you have already fileted it. Locals say to keep a strip of skin for identification in case you’re asked for proof of your species.

A lot of these regulations are in place because, despite the larger numbers of Marlin roaming around, there’s still a substantial number of fishermen in the waters. With that many individuals on the hunt, if everyone were allowed to take whatever they wanted, it could easily hurt the Marlin supply and disrupt the marine food web.

Certain species of Marlin, such as Blue and White, are already endangered, so extra precautions are in place to ensure their populations don’t drop too far. All of these regulations are put in place to maintain good fisheries and ensure healthy populations of Marlin and their surrounding marine life.

Marlin Fishing in Cabo: The Ultimate Thrill

An aerial view of a fishing charter in front of Los Arcos, Cabo San Lucas, at sunset on a cloudy day with the sun setting behind clouds in the distance behind the arch
Photo courtesy of Joceline’s Sport Fishing

Well, there you have it, the ultimate guide to Marlin fishing in Cabo. Come here and cast your line, and you’re sure to have the trip of a lifetime. That’s something you’ll truly believe once you hook into one of those monsters! Targeting these monsters can provide fun for all ages, and you’ll find many other activities to engage in while roaming the town as well.

FishingBooker can help pair you up with experienced guides who can get you out on the waters of Cabo. You’ll have no problem having an enjoyable time on the beautiful ocean, with many sightseeing opportunities for nature’s finest monuments and a variety of marine life. The icing on top will be once you get to hook into a crazy, feisty beast. Yes, that’s Marlin fishing in Cabo!

Have you ever gone fishing in Cabo? Did you land a Marlin? Let us know all about your experience in the comments below!

The post How to Go Marlin Fishing in Cabo San Lucas: An Angler’s Guide  appeared first on FishingBooker Blog.

By: Caitlyn Gatrell
Title: How to Go Marlin Fishing in Cabo San Lucas: An Angler’s Guide 
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Published Date: Sun, 06 Aug 2023 11:53:57 +0000

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