San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Good Bite, East and West

The weather and fishing on the Pacific side of the country has been better than average for early October, with a good sailfish, marlin and mahimahi bite all along the coast. Conditions have also been good on the Caribbean side, with sunny days, flat seas and lots of tarpon.

Northern Pacific

Capt. Richard Chellemi on the Gamefisher II reports a good bite up north. He’s been going offshore and averaging a handful of sailfish each day, plus a few 200- to 300- pound marlin here and there. He’s also been able to get a few mahimahi each day for the dinner table.

Ralph Solano of Costa Rica Wild Fishing in PotreroBay says the kayak fishing is still very good for a large variety of species, including snook, mackerel, barracuda and corvina.

Central Pacific

Capt. James Smith and the guys on the Dragin Fly took a single angler out for two days of fishing for big tuna. They caught a handful of tuna from 50 to 80 pounds and released eight sailfish the first day and 10 the next.

My friends and I went offshore for a couple of days on our boat, the Disco Pirate, to fish at a local hot spot called the Craters, about 25 miles offshore. On day one, we released 10 sailfish and kept a 30-pound mahimahi for dinner. The second day, the sailfish disappeared. We chased some big tuna around with no luck but managed to release a nice 300-pound blue marlin. A few days later, we went to a spot called the 26 Rock and caught three nice mahimahi, a half-dozen yellowfin tuna and a 60-pound amberjack.

The crew of the Barbarrosa went offshore recently with the Jeremy Warren party and ended the day with five sailfish releases and two nice mahimahi for the grill.

Earl Warren went out on his 28-foot panga, BlackCloud, and released two roosterfish, a 70-pounder and a 90-pounder. He nd his crew always seem to know where the big roosters are.

Capt. Dana Thomas on the Hoo’s Your Daddy took some friends bottom fishing and caught a whole mess of grouper and snapper in the 10- to 15-pound range. That’s some good eating.

Capt. Dave Dobbins on the Bluewater II in Quepos has been getting in on the sailfish action, averaging six or seven sailfish per day, as well as several big mahimahi each day. The Harry Oshman group with son Nate and his girlfriend, Chris, released five sails and kept two nice mahimahi on a recent full day offshore.

Also in Quepos, Capt. Chris Bernstel on the Kinembe II reports a very good snook and roosterfish bite inshore and some good numbers of mahimahi offshore.

Southern Pacific

Capt. Bob Baker of Golfito Sportfishing reports summertime conditions in the Playa Zancudo area, with sunny skies and blue water. The marlin bite has been steady along the weed lines seven to 14 miles off Matapalo. There have also been some sailfish, tuna and mahimahi in the mix. The inshore fishing has been good for corvina and snapper, but the fat snook bite has been a bit slow.

Northern Region

Philippe Tisseaux of San Carlos Sportfishing took a buddy of mine out for a few days on the San Juan River in Nicaragua. My friend had a great time, averaging three hookups and one release per day. The tarpon were all in the 125- to 150-pound range.


Capt. Eddie Brown of the Bullshark in Tortuguero is enjoying the nice weather, flat seas and good tarpon bite. He recently took a single angler out for a couple of days and averaged six tarpon releases each day. All of the fish were in the 125- to 150-pound range.

Diann Sánchez of the Río Colorado Lodge reports some good fishing on their boats, with 75 tarpon hookups and 30 releases in one week. Guests have also caught barracuda, jack, king mackerel, a stingray and a 40-pound cobia. Cobia are common in the U.S. state of Florida, but this may have been the first time one has been caught in the Barra Colorado area.

Please send fishing reports, photos and comments to Jerry “Bubba” Hallstrom at, or call 2778-7217 in Costa Rica or 1-800-9SAILFISH from the United States. To post reports and photos on The Tico Times’ online fishing forum, go to


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