Benn GilmourThat's Fishin'

That’s Fishin’- January 2020

That's Fishin' header

By Benn Gilmour

A huge Happy New Year, may all your Fishy dreams come true in 2020 & welcome to the January installment of That’s Fishin!

Our peak fishing season is in full swing and we have experienced some truly incredible fishing during the past couple of months, I hope that you get to experience it for yourself during your time in the area.

Man releasing a marlinOFFSHORE FISHING

The Billfish bite offshore has been great with good numbers of Sailfish, Blue and Striped Marlin being caught. December and January are perhaps the best months of the year to catch a Billfish Grand Slam of 3 different Billfish species in a single day. Several boats in the fleet have already accomplished Grand Slams and I expect more to do so in the coming months whilst there remains the possibility of Striped and Black Marlin together with the more common Sailfish and Blue Marlin.

The Tuna fishing was spectacular during December with lots of fish in the 30-80 lb range caught and frequent 100-200 lb class fish landed also. All manner of artificial lures work well for Tuna here in Costa Rica such as various sized Squidnation Squids, Bucktail Jigs, Bass Worms plus other styles of jigs. It is difficult to beat a Live Bonito for a BIG Tuna, however, Blue Runners, Goggle Eyes, Caballas, and Sardines all work well also.

After some insane Mahi/Dorado fishing in November, the bite slowed a little in December as the rains cleared and water temperatures started to rise. A few Dorado should still be caught over the next couple of months and are always a welcome addition to any Billfish charter.

The main event in January is most certainly Sailfish and is the start of our peak Sailfish bite which typically goes on from January through mid-April. Double digit release days can be possible when the bite is on!

Team holding a large dorado2019 DORADO DERBY

A huge thank you to the Marina Pez Vela for hosting yet another world class event in the form of the 2019 DORADO DERBY! What an epic day it proved to be with 40 boats setting out in search of the largest Dorado. As well as being one of the funnest and most accessible tournaments in the calendar with super low team entry fees, the competition proved to be fierce with just 8 lbs separating the top 6 boats! The top 6 boats all landed Dorado in excess of the magical 50 lb mark, proving that Costa Rica is indeed one of the top places in the world to catch a Big Dorado. A special mention to TEAM DAN that fished the tournament in memory of our buddy & long term Quepos resident Dan Moran who sadly passed away recently. TEAM DAN finished in 3rd place in the tournament and we all raised a glass to Dan on this day. Congrats to boat Spanish Fly from Los Suenos who were crowned this year’s champions with a huge fish of 58 lbs, just wow! Congrats to all of the winners and we are already looking forward to seeing a bigger and better event for next year!

Results – 2019 Dorado Derby

Spanish Fly 58.2lb
Koquitos Light on Gunner 54.7lb
Team Dan Moran on Nautiventures 54.2lb
Portafino 51.5lb
Peyton’s Pirates on Good Day 50.5lb
Big Eye II 50.1lb

2 men holding a large fishINSHORE FISHING

The Inshore fishing during the past month has been nothing short of fabulous with some incredible fish being caught by the Quepos Fleet. Roosterfish, Snook, Snapper, Jacks, and Mackerel, among other species, have been keeping Anglers busy and providing some great action on the light tackle Inshore charters that we offer here. The Snook fishing at the river mouths close to Quepos has been great with lots of fish in the 6-12lb range and some 20lb plus fish showing also. The beaches and river mouths have provided some great fishing for small to mid-sized Roosterfish with larger Roosters being caught at the rocks. This excellent fishing will continue through January with calm seas and livebait plentiful inshore.

The Reynolds family fishing aboard GOOD DAY on November 27th had the catch of a lifetime when they caught a Tarpon estimated at 70-80lbs and around 5 feet in length! This was a total surprise catch as Tarpon are usually only found in the Atlantic, however, it is thought that they have made there way through the Panama Canal and are now successfully breeding in Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, and possibly other places. Several other Tarpon catches have been reported in the Quepos area and even more catches have been reported down in the Osa Peninsula, further south. We expect Tarpon catches to increase here in the coming years and look forward to seeing how things develop on that front! If you would like an Inshore charter of your own, some great boats to look at are Good Day, Chloe Frijole, IDRA 2, Mar 1, Mucho Fisho, and Nueva Vida which offer half day or full day inshore charters. Get out there and experience our Inshore fishery for yourselves!

Group holding a large tunaIT’S TOURNAMENT TIME!

The wait is over!! The weekend of January 11-12th sees the folks from PELAGIC & Marina Pez Vela hold the 3rd installment of the PELAGIC ROCKSTAR tournament. This event gets bigger & better every year, with more boats and some HUGE CASH PRIZES on offer! Come down and join the party at the Marina Pez Vela, we would love to see you there!

The rest of the 2020 Marina Pez Vela Tournament calendar is just around the corner with at least one epic event taking place each month from now until May. This is our biggest line up of tournaments EVER seen here in Quepos, full details can be found at:

January 11-12 Pelagic ROCKSTAR!
February 21-22 The Pescadora Billfish Championship (Ladies Only!)
March 7 Roosterfish Rodeo (NEW!)
March 20-21 Quepos Billfish Cup
April 17-18 Marina Pez Vela Open
April 20-23 Offshore World Championships
May 23-24 Pelagic Pura Vida Inshore Classic & Kids Only tournament!

Jackpot logo Happy New Year & Tight lines out there!

Benn Gilmour
Jackpot Sport Fishing, Marina Pez Vela, Quepos
Cell: 8458 4997 [email protected]