San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Rains Slow Fishing on Pacific; Caribbean Reports Good Tarpon Action

September and October are the height of rainy season in Costa Rica, as the recent weather has amply proven. Tropical storms at the end of September brought much of the country heavy rains and cloudy skies for more than a week.

We get these heavy rains every year, and the good news is that they mark the beginning of the end of rainy season. According to my records, the big rains last year came at the end of October, and in mid-October in 2008. Hopefully they came early this year, and it won’t be long before summer returns with sunny days, calm seas, cobalt-blue water and good fishing.

The heavy rains push the blue water and the bite farther offshore, and this can slow down the fishing. Before the recent downpours, the offshore fishing on the Pacific was good for marlin and yellowfin tuna, and the tarpon bite was good on the Caribbean coast.

Northern Pacific

Petra Schoep of Tamarindo Sportfishing reports that after some awful weather, things are getting better. The OutCast raised six sailfish and released two on a full day with Jesse and Melinda Ham. The inshore action has been good for mackerel and grouper.

Central Pacific

Macushla tuna

The folks on the Macushla hauled in a big tuna.

The guys on the Macushla out of Los Sueños Marina fished offshore right before the rains and caught three blue marlin, two sailfish and a big yellowfin tuna.

Capt. James Smith and the crew of the Dragin Fly out of Los Sueños went out before and after the rains. Before the rain, they were doing well on blue marlin, sailfish and tuna. Afterward, they did well on sailfish, mahimahi and striped marlin.

The captain and crew of the J-Barrilete in Herradura Bay took a group of three anglers offshore for a full day of fishing, and they went seven for nine on sailfish and added a couple of small mahimahi for the dinner table.

Capt. Mitch Pearson on the Shotgun got in on some of the marlin action in front of Los Sueños, going two for four. He also caught a couple of sailfish and a handful of nice yellowfin tuna on a recent day offshore.

U.S. anglers Andre Mule from Florida and Chuck Pankow from Pennsylvania fished with the guys on the Good Day Too and caught three monster wahoo between 40 and 70 pounds.

Capt. Alex Holdin on the La Manta out of Quepos has had some good days down at a local hot spot called the 26 Rock, with a mix of wahoo, yellowfin tuna, small mahimahi, jack and snapper.

Capt. Chris Bernstel on the Kinembe II reports a good marlin and wahoo bite out in front of Quepos. The inshore fishing has been slow due to the heavy rains and dirty water, he reports. 

Southern Pacific

Capt. Bob Baker of Golfito Sportfishing reports some big tuna and marlin offshore, but the weather has been a problem with heavy rains and choppy seas, so most anglers have been fishing inshore and catching some big roosterfish, cubera snapper and corvina.


Jim DiBerardinis at Tarponville reports calm seas and lots of tarpon on the southern Caribbean coast. Eight fly fishermen from South Africa hooked more than 150 tarpon during a week of fishing. Terry Young and son from the U.S. state of New Jersey fought 32 tarpon in their first four days of fishing.

Roseanne Cody of Silver King Lodge in Barra del Colorado, on the northern Caribbean coast, says angler Joe Antoinette caught more than 40 tarpon in four days of fishing. They also had a party of 14 from Mexico that averaged five tarpon per angler per day. Cody says the weather has been nice and the seas flat, and that means good tarpon fishing.

The folks at Rio Colorado Lodge also report calm seas and a good tarpon bite. Wally Jarboe and son fished three days and jumped 28 tarpon, and also caught five jack crevalle. Steve Palmo and Mitch Wergilles released nine tarpon, all between 120 and 180 pounds. A group of three anglers hooked almost 100 tarpon in three days earlier this week.

Fishing out of Tortuga Lodge in Tortuguero, Capt. Eddie Brown reports calm seas and plenty of tarpon. The anglers there have been averaging five or six tarpon releases and dozens of strikes per day. They also have caught some nice snook in the river mouths.

Ralph Solano of Costa Rica Wild Fishing, who usually does kayak charters on the northern Pacific coast, has been doing some shore fishing on the Caribbean side these past few weeks. He’s been catching snook, jack and even a few 80-pound tarpon on light tackle and black jigs.

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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