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That’s Fishin’ – November 2022

We are so pleased to welcome you to the start of our brand-new Fishing season! September & October are our quietest months for tourism and mark the height of our rainy season when most of us boat owners take the opportunity to get our boat maintenance done and take a quick break before our new Fishing season begins November 1st. And what better way to kick off the 2022/2023 season than with our first tournaments of the new calendar, the DORADO DERBY’S!

2022 DORADO DERBY

The Dorado Derby is held over two weekends with the Dorado Derby happening on November 12th and the Dorado Derby Dos on November 19th. Each event is a separate tournament, you can enter either one of the tournaments or both. Over the past few years, The Dorado Derby has become one of our most popular events of the year and gains great support from both locals, expat residents and tourists. What makes this event so special is that literally everyone taking part in the event has a chance of winning. Simply catch the biggest Dorado on the day to take home the prize $$$ and the all-important bragging rights! If the fun of the weekend of November 12th is not enough for you then we are repeating it again on November 19th with the DORADO DERBY DOS which follows exactly the same format giving you and your team a second chance at glory.

It is by no coincidence that we choose November to hold this tournament. The Dorado fishing in November out of Quepos is literally some of the best on the planet. The end of our seasonal rains and build up of debris lines of wood, tree trucks and the likes Offshore, create the perfect hunting grounds for large Dorado. Dorado up to more than 60lbs have been caught in the past few instalments of the tournament and there are much larger fish caught here each year, could this year be the one for a record breaker?

If you would like to get involved, simply give myself or the team at the Marina Pez Vela Guest Centre a call to help you find a boat.

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That’s Fishin’ – September/October 2022

Welcome to the September & October edition of That’s Fishin! What a great year of fishing it has been so far, visitor numbers have been fantastic this year and the Quepos Charter fleet have been kept busy on the water taking our visitors from around the world fishing in search of those dream catches.

OFFSHORE FISHING

We enjoyed some truly epic fishing during August. The Sailfish bite popped up a few times and provided some fantastic fishing when the fish were found. The 31 foot BUCKETLIST released 12 Sailfish on a single day charter which was fantastic numbers for the time of year. Capt Franklin aboard BIG EYE had an epic day on August 8th releasing 3 Blue Marlin, 1 Sailfish, 2 Tuna and 2 big Dorado—all in a days work which was one epic day for sure!

The larger boats in the fleet such as THE SPORTSMAN, THE HOOKER, & HOG WILD have been fishing 60-100 miles out at our Marlin FADS & SEAMOUNTS and catching some insane numbers of Blue Marlin. Our Offshores Marlin FAD fishery is one of the only places on the planet where you could be in with a chance of raising upwards of 10 Blue Marlin in a single day when the bite is on. If epic Blue Marlin fishing is on your Bucketlist, this is the trip for you and just drop me a line for more info.

August produced some really solid Yellowfin Tuna with many fish in the 30-50lb range and some 100lb plus fish landed too. Congrats to our good friend Blake Stevenson from South Carolina who has been fishing aboard my boat GOOD DAY with Capt. Manuel Gabuardi for 18 years now. He had a blast on August 6th when he landed a Tuna in the 90-100lb range plus several more up to 50lbs.

Some nice Wahoo have been present over the Offshore reefs and there has been some good Dorado fishing too with good numbers of small to mid-sized fish and the odd 30-50lb Bull Dorado showing up too.

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That’s Fishin’ – July 2022

Welcome to the July edition of That’s Fishin! There is never a dull moment here in the Fishing World at the Marina Pez Vela, it has been a great Fishing year so far with everything from world class tournaments and pro anglers visiting us to locals and visiting families taking their kids fishing for the first time. Magic happens constantly when spending time out on the water and it’s the reason we love what we do and keeps us coming back for more.

OFFSHORE FISHING

July offers opportunities for almost all of the primary Offshore fish that we catch here. This time of year has traditionally been known as ‘meatfish season’ with good catches of Tuna, Dorado, Wahoo, Grouper and Snapper all possible right now. Different tactics need to be deployed for each species, we catch the larger Tuna out deep alongside megapods of Spinner or Spotted Dolphins, just seeing these huge dolphin schools can be a life changing experience in itself! For the Dorado we look for Debris lines where branches, tree trunks and the like gather offshore after being washed out of the rivers during the heavier periods of rain. Dorado love to hang out along these debris lines and the great thing is very often it happens only 6-12 miles Offshore. May-August typically provides the best Wahoo fishing of the year close to Quepos and to target these you need to head to the Offshore Reef pinnacles. Deep diving lures such as Rapala X-Raps, Nomad DTX’s work great, as do Skirted Bait type set ups and never forgetting the trusty old cedar plug! For the Grouper and Snapper fishing, this primarily takes place by bottom fishing in 200-400 feet of water using squid, livebaits or jigging is a popular method also. In addition to the meatfish, there will be Sailfish and Marlin out there too, the Sail fishing was fairly slow during May/early June but things change very quickly here and I would expect there to be some good Sail fishing coming soon in addition to some great Marlin fishing that we usually get in July on day trips. There is literally sometime for everyone at this time of year.

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That’s Fishin’ – May/June 2022

Welcome to the May & June edition of That’s Fishin’. We hardly came up for breath during the November to April high season and are so thankful that it has been a great season so far, most of the Quepos charter fishing boats have fished non-stop and all have their own stories to tell of the monsters caught and of course, the one that got away!

OFFSHORE FISHING

During the past 2-3 years, a simply epic Sailfish bite developed around 35 miles from Quepos between May-July. This coincided with a huge amount of Caballa baitfish congregating in 250-300’ of water and brought with it the motherload of hungry Sailfish providing some of the best Sailfishing we have seen in the area in recent years. We are waiting to see if it occurs again this year but we are hopeful that it will again and stay tuned for incoming fishing reports in the next issue. Some staggering numbers of Sailfish were released in this area last year, boats were going out and releasing upwards of 10-20 Sailfish in a day and on some occasions, many many more, that would be hard to believe unless you were there to witness it yourselves, which most of us in the fishing world, did. Fingers crossed it happens again this year!

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That’s Fishin’ – April 2022

A huge welcome to everyone visiting for the 2022 OFFSHORE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS taking place April 24-29, we are delighted to have you here in Quepos and Manuel Antonio and I wish you a fantastic visit to Costa Rica with some truly excellent Fishing & memories made for a lifetime. The Offshore World Championships is the jewel in the crown of our tournament fishing season and we are so blessed to have such an event take place here which attracts visitors from all corners of the world.

OFFSHORE FISHING

March provided some simply excellent Marlin fishing out of the Marina Pez Vela. Water temperatures have been cooler than normal due to the La Nina weather cycle and a bit more rain than normal in the early part of the year, keeping the water temperatures lower and just ideal for Marlin. Lots of Blue Marlin were caught by the fleet and during the early part of March, we received a great run of Striped Marlin, which are always a welcome surprise and provided some excellent fishing. Striped Marlin here average in the 60-100lb category and are the small cousin to the Blue Marlin which are more common here. There was some fantastic Sailfish fishing during March which looks set to be even better in April. The Big Bull Dorados showed up during March and many 30-60lb Dorados have been caught, which are the highlight of many people’s day on the water. The Tuna fishing has been nothing short of world class with lots of Tuna in the 20-80lb range and some bigger fish thrown in also. The fishing forecast for April looks HOT and I hope you will get to experience it for yourself. We have lots of boats in the 25-60 foot range for all tastes and budgets, waiting to take you on the Offshore fishing adventure of a lifetime.

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That’s Fishin’ – March 2022


What a season it has been so far! Quepos has literally fished its socks off during January and February and I cannot wait to see what March has in store for our visitors from around the world!

OFFSHORE FISHING

The Marlin bite was just epic during the first couple of months of the year. We believe that the Pelagic Rockstar tournament held in mid-January, released more Blue Marlin during its 2 days than any other tournament in history on the entire planet…and that is saying something, just wow!! The Sailfish bite cranked up during February with some lucky Anglers getting involved in WIDE OPEN SAILFISHING and releasing upwards of 20 Sailfish in a day on some occasions. A shout out to FRENZY, HOG WILD, & MONKEYSHINE who are all Marina Pez Vela Charter Boats posting some huge numbers of Sailfish releases recently. The late rains this season really helped keep the water temperatures down and the Dorado around for a bit longer and there has been some fantastic Dorado fishing recently with lots of 20-30 pounders with a few huge 40-50lb plus Dorado showing. Wahoo made a surprise appearance and were caught consistently during January and February over the Offshore reefs up to 50lbs. The Offshore Tuna fishing was epic also with Anglers enjoying scenes of hundreds of Spinner Dolphins, diving birds, and hungry Yellow Fin Tuna busting the surface whilst chasing Flying Fish, in National Geographic-worthy moments.

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That’s Fishin’ – February 2022


Welcome to the February instalment of That’s Fishing, we are so pleased to have you in the area and hope that you can spend some time on the water whilst you are here.

January provided some simply incredible Fishing here in Quepos with a wide-open Marlin bite and some of the best Marlin fishing experienced in recent years. Many of the Quepos charter boats managed to have some excellent days releasing multiple Marlin, a shout out to boat Frenzy who released an amazing 10 Marlin during a single day’s fishing in January. Simply incredible! The Dorado fishing was also excellent during January with plenty of 25-30lb dorado showing in addition to some great Tuna fishing and a few surprise Wahoo.

OFFSHORE FISHING

The excellent Fishing looks set to continue during February and Anglers can expect greater Sailfish numbers in what is now the peak time of year to target Sailfish here as they arrive in great numbers for the next couple of months. Our Sailfish average 70lbs and regularly exceed 100lbs and with the sheer numbers of fish we get here, Costa Rica is most certainly one of the best places on the planet to target Sailfish. It’s what brings Anglers flocking from near and far and you have most certainly come to the right place! Sailfish are targeted during Offshore trips in addition to Yellow Fin Tuna, Marlin and Dorado/Mahi Mahi.

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That’s Fishin’ – January 2022

A huge Happy New Year to all of our readers and visitors from around the world. I hope you enjoy this month’s edition for your update on all things fishing in the Quepos & Manuel Antonio area and I wish you tight lines for the year ahead!

THE WAIT IS OVER……….IT’S PELAGIC ROCKSTAR TIME!!!

It’s time to dust off those blow up guitars, don your punk-rocker wig and get yourselves down to the Marina Pez Vela for the PARTY OF THE YEAR on the weekend of January 14-16th. The PELAGIC ROCKSTAR is THE HIGHLIGHT on the Costa Rica tournament calendar and this year’s event looks set to award a staggering ONE MILLION DOLLARS in prize money making it the richest fishing tournament in Central America! There is a large boat category, small boat category, as well as Jackpots for Billfish, Tuna, Mahi, and much more. Registration is open until the day before the tournament and whether you want to fish in the event or just want to come down to the Marina to enjoy the LIVE MUSIC and TOURNAMENT VIBE, we hope to see you there!

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That’s Fishin’ – December 2021

The rains are almost over, and December officially marks the beginning of the dry season here on the Central Pacific Coast. Expect the fishing and the weather here to be HOT, HOT, HOT and we are so glad that you are here to join us.

2021 DORADO DERBY—WHAT A BLAST!

As I write, we are just coming down from the high that was one of the most successful tournaments ever here at the Marina Pez Vela. The 2021 Dorado Derby which took place on Nov 13th was one for the local history books as no fewer than 56 of Costa’s most well-known boats took to the high seas in search of the largest Dorado (Mahi Mahi). The 7am ‘shotgun start’ literally gave us goosebumps, witnessing the amazing scenes of all 56 boats lined up before racing off into the horizon, with every single one of them truly believing, today could be their day for victory. The FUN & SIMPLE format of this event has been designed so that literally every single boat in the fleet has a chance of winning. Simply catch the heaviest Dorado to take home the winning check & more importantly the lifelong bragging rights! And that is exactly what TEAM OFFENSIVE did, catching a monstrous 65lb Dorado, taking home a check for more than US$26,000—just wow! Huge congrats to everyone at TEAM OFFENSIVE!

A BIG shout out to MATTHEW ORLOWSKI who was the Champion Junior Angler with a 25lb Dorado, this young guy fished his heart out and the win was well deserved, definitely one to watch for the future! CRYSTAL PETEREK was the top Lady Angler and huge congrats to Crystal, fishing against some of the seriously talented Lady Anglers we have in the Quepos area.

RESULTS—2021 DORADO DERBY (Nov 13th)

Team Offensive, 65lb Dorado
Team Nastia Bill, 47lb Dorado
Team Nameless, 43lb Dorado

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That’s Fishin’ – November 2021

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man and woman with doradoWelcome to the November instalment of That’s Fishin’ & the start of a new high season here in Quepolandia! A huge thank you to everyone who Fished in Costa Rica this past season and we look forward to another great year on the water welcoming visitors from around the world.

We are lucky to experience some great fishing almost year-round, however, the next couple of months are literally my favourite time to fish. It is not only our peak season for both Dorado & Marlin but there are plenty of other great species to target also!

OFFSHORE FISHING

When everything comes together perfectly, the Dorado fishing here during November is simply amazing. After the heavy rains of September and October, debris lines form along the tide lines and current breaks very often around 8-15 miles Offshore. Whole trees, logs, branches and more can be found floating around Offshore after washing out of the rivers during heavy, heavy rains. This floating structure attracts lots of baitfish which draws the Dorado and other predators in. At this time of year, we catch lots of Dorado in the 15-25lb range with 30-lb pound fish showing up commonly and a few monsters in the 50-70lb class too.

2 men holding a tunaFull or Half-day trips out of the Marina will give you opportunities to go Dorado fishing this November. Further Offshore, November and December are peak months for Marlin also. Blue Marlin are the most common with most fish in the 150-300lb range but there will be some Striped Marlin in the mix also and the chance of a big Black Marlin over the Offshore Reefs. Sailfish are present here year-round and we are lucky to see them on most Offshore trips but numbers will increase in December as we move towards peak Sailfish season January through April. The end of the year is a great time for large Yellow Fin Tuna which are found here together with mega pods of Spinner or Spotted Dolphins. Some of the largest Tuna of the year are typically caught in December and January but November will still provide good opportunities for Tuna for the boats fishing 20+ miles Offshore.

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That’s Fishin’ – July/August 2021

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By Benn Gilmour

Simply blessed! What an incredible year it has been so far. After the turbulence of last year, it has been great to see some kind of normalcy return to the tourism scene here in Quepos/Manuel Antonio and our Charter Boats have thankfully had a busy season with lots of visitors from the states just crying out for some time on the water. Thank you to each and every one of you that have fished with one of our Quepos boats and helped us continue to do what we love. The fishing has not disappointed and our lucky Anglers have enjoyed some simply world class Fishing over these past few months.

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That’s Fishin’- March 2021

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Welcome to the March instalment of That’s Fishin! I hope the big fish and smiling faces in the photos inspire you to take a trip for yourself!

Marlin in the waterOFFSHORE FISHING

March is an excellent time to fish Offshore here in Quepos. Blue skies and flat calm seas are the norm and large numbers of Big Pacific Sailfish are the main target. This is an excellent time of year to get in on a serious billfish bite. Releasing double digit Sailfish in a day’s fishing is not uncommon here during March. A recent guest aboard my boat GOOD DAY could not quite believe it when he reeled in 6 Sailfish back-to-back…he said that if he caught 1, he would have been delighted but never in his wildest dreams did he expect to catch 6 Sailfish in one day! Welcome to Costa Rica guys!

In addition to Sailfish the Tuna fishing should remain excellent during March. If you have never witnessed a megapod of Spinner Dolphins which travel together with the Tuna schools you are going to be in for a real treat. There have been some excellent marine life sightings over the past month with Humpback Whales, Pilot Whales, Killer Whales, even a rare Curviers Beaked Whale on one recent trip in addition to the four dolphin species we encounter regularly and daily sightings of Turtles, Manta Rays, and all manner of other species. National Geographic worthy scenes are a daily occurrence during offshore trips out of Quepos and I hope that you get to experience it for yourself. Blue, Black, and Striped Marlin should all make an appearance during March, plus the odd Dorado and maybe even a Wahoo.

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That’s Fishin’- February 2021

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A warm welcome to the February edition of That’s Fishin’ and what a start to the 2020-2021 Sport Fishing season we have had here in Quepos, with some phenomenal fishing taking place this past couple of months.

Man releasing a billfishOFFSHORE FISHING

January witnessed some simply insane Sailfishing, with many boats managing to get into double digit Sailfish releases during some days on the water. January through April sees some of the best Sailfishing of the year so expect the excellent opportunities for Sailfish to continue for the next couple of months and I hope you get to experience it for yourself.

There were plenty of Blue Marlin released from November to January, and February should continue to provide a great chance of catching a Marlin during Offshore trips. Most Blue Marlin are in the 150-250lb range, however, there have been several seriously large Blues caught in the past month, you just never know when that fish of a lifetime is going to take your bait!

Family holding a tunaDecember and January produced good numbers of Striped Marlin which are always a welcome addition to any charter and definitely one of the most beautiful fish in the ocean. February is a great time for Black Marlin, and a slow-trolled live bonito over our Offshore reefs is the preferred method to target a big Black Marlin, which can regularly exceed over 500lbs here.

The Tuna fishing has been nothing short of exceptional during December and January. The turn of the year is always a great time for large-grade Yellow Fin Tuna, and this year has been no exception. Many fish in the 50-100lb class have been caught with some real sea monsters in the 150-200lb plus range landed also. Livebait, or artificial Squidnation Squids, are some of the preferred methods for Tuna here.

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That’s Fishin’- January 2021

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Welcome to the January installment of That’s Fishin and from the entire SportMan holding a doradofishing community here in Quepos, a huge Happy New Year from our family to yours, we are delighted to have you here with us and hope to see you on the water!

Whilst COVID lockdowns seemed to give the entire planet a well needed rest, we certainly saw the results closer to home in our fishery. Casting our minds back to May, June, & July of 2020, while Costa Rican borders were closed and there was very little pressure on the ocean, we experienced what was simply the best Sailfish bite we have seen in Quepos for some years. Recalling one trip aboard my boat GOOD DAY, we released 26 Sailfish, 2 Wahoo, and a handful of Tuna. Now that was one heck of a day for sure but the crazy thing was, boats were going out and catching those kinds of numbers on a daily basis! For 3 years running now we have had an excellent ‘off season’ bite happening May-July, we are hoping it happens again this year and if you love fishing, it is definitely worth considering a trip back here during those months to see if it happens again.

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That’s Fishin’ – April/May/June 2020

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What a total blast we have had during our fishing tournament festivities & high season craziness over the past month! The Quepos fishing fleet have been busy providing Offshore and Inshore charters to tourists from all around the world and some magical fishing has been taking place for sure.

Woman and man holding a DoradoThe offshore bite during the first weeks of March was nothing short of phenomenal with huge numbers of Sailfish and Tuna keeping our Anglers busy. Many boats got into coveted double digit Sailfish release days and some boats even caught as many as 20 Sailfish in a single day’s fishing, simply amazing fishing wherever you are in the world.

There has been a wide open Tuna bite happening from December through March and we expect this to continue through April. Livebaits have been accounting for many of the larger fish, however, Squidnation Squids, Bass worms, and all manner of Jigs have been catching solid sized Tuna also. We have had lots of fish in the 20-80lb range with regular fish in the 100lb plus category also BUT there is always a much bigger fish lurking down there somewhere and maybe, just maybe, you could be the lucky angler!

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