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Well, I’ll preface this by saying the fishing part of this trip didn’t go as planned. But, I’m never going to complain about spending time in Baja!
My parents and I, along with some close family friends, headed down to San Felipe, Baja for a little over a week. Mostly the plan was to relax and spend some time with family and close friends. But, I loaded my fishing gear, along with my new Jackson Coosa FD and my Kraken 13.5, and we headed south. My hope was to get at least a couple days of fishing in near the Puertocitos area or possibly down by Gonzaga Bay, and put my new FD through some tests!
The weather wasn’t very cooperative during the days I planned to fish. What were supposed to be 3-8mph winds, ended up actually being more like 10-20mph winds a couple of the days! The first day, while fishing near Puertocitos, the wind became too difficult to fight! I was able to get an hour or so of fishing in, slowly cruising near the rocky points, and casting my plugs to shore, hoping for a grouper. What I liked about the Flex Drive was that I could cruise along with my rod in one hand, ready to make a cast once I found some structure I liked. I’m by no means a “patient” fisherman, I like to cover lots of water, and the Coosa FD makes it easy for me to do that. However, the wind continued to build and build, causing the waves to get bigger as well. Surprisingly, these conditions didn’t bother me nearly as much as they would normally. I was able to maintain my position while casting and later on jigging some deeper water. Another thing I’ve found impressive with the Coosa FD was the stability. I never felt uncomfortable while in the rougher seas, I’m just not sure how things would have went if I had hooked something big! Unfortunately, with the conditions getting progressively worse, we decided to call things early and head back to the launch. I wasn’t too disappointed though, since I figured we’d get some more opportunities on the water. On the way back, I did get one little Sand Bass while jigging, which would be the only fish on the trip.
My second day of fishing, I launched directly out of the beach houses in San Felipe. We had just got back from breakfast and I noticed some dolphins out directly in front of the houses. It looked as though they were chasing around a school of fish! This particular area isn’t exactly known for the best fishing, being its all sand flats and gets lots of pressure. It does get some roving schools of Corvina, on occasion. So, I decided to launch and try to get out to where the dolphins were and steal a fish or two from them. But, by the time I got out to where they were at, they were long gone. As well as no signs of the fish they were chasing! I trolled around though, covering as much water as I could, but only ended up with one brief hookup. Trolling is another area that the Coosa FD makes easy. I only had one rod out, that I chose to hold while cruising the flats. I like having the ability to hold the rod and give it a “rip” every now and then to impart a little more action on the lure. Time flew by while I was trolling and I soon realized the tide was going out! In this area, the tide goes out a half mile or so and I was worried about getting stranded way out there! I made a speedy run back to the beach and only had a short drag back to the house.
Things lined up to where my last day of fishing would be spent down in Gonzaga Bay, an area I’ve really grown to love! Conditions were epic, the fishing not so much…. Just as I was getting ready to launch, one of the local fisherman gave me some good intel on a Yellowtail bite he had been getting into the last couple days. But, I didn’t listen. He had suggested going outside the bay, but being I was fishing alone, I opted to be on the safe side and fish in the protected area of the bay. Plus, there were some other people out and about to keep an eye on me. After launching, right away I was marking lots of bait and schools of bigger fish near them. Though, I was focused more on casting towards the rocks, being one of my main goals for the trip was to get a Grouper on one of my custom made wood plugs. I got an opportunity at what I assume was a Grouper about midday. My lure got smashed while working a rocky point, but the tug of war was soon lost when it took me into the rocks. Of course, I was using my lighter set up, instead of one of the rod/reel combos I bought specifically for fishing down there…. Lesson learned, and once again I was humbled by Baja. I threw a variety of offerings throughout my last day of fishing including my wood plugs, hard plastic, soft plastic, and metal. The fish just didn’t seem to cooperate! Overall, a really pleasant day in a beautiful area of Mexico. The Coosa FD was even better in the calm conditions! I can’t wait to get back!
Being a long time “paddle” kayaker, wind is my absolute nemesis! Everything becomes more difficult when wind is added to the equation, but the Coosa FD has changed things for me. I have always understood the logic behind benefits of peddle kayak, but now that I’ve experienced them first hand, I’m a believer!