February’s Costa Rica Fishing Reports


While the economic crisis seems to have doused cold water on a lot of people’s anticipated Costa Rica fishing trip this year, the billfish on the Pacific side either can’t read or don’t care.

It’s been a tremendous January and February for those who have been fortunate enough to fish the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. Bill Kieldsen, captain of the 35-foot Sailfish out of Los Sueños, calls it the best marlin year in the last ten. Back from fishing earlier this week, he e-mailed us with his open days in March, and added that his clients had brought eight sails to the boat that day.
His words are echoed by Americana Sportfishing client Mark Pisarek, who with three of his buddies fished two days out of Los Sueños on the 38-foot Macushla with Captain Johnny Cerpas and a day on the 38-foot Tres Amigos with Captain Tim Blair. Mark writes: “Well, another year’s trip on the books and what a great time it was.

“Our totals were: 20 sailfish raised and 12 released; three yellowfin tuna of 25lbs each all caught at the same time (yes, we had a triple hook up!); two large dorado of 35 and 50lbs; and two black marlin caught and released, one 400lbs and one 275lbs which was brought to the boat and then revived in the water by Mario the deckhand. Great trip as always, and thanks for setting it up.”

Mark has already booked his February 2010 dates. Another FishCostaRica repeat client, Don Austin of Atlanta, had an extremely successful day offshore out of Quepos an hour south of Los Sueños with Captain Bill Gannon on the 33-foot Unique. “Here is a picture (above left) of one of the six fish I caught with Captain Bill: five sails and a marlin”, he e-mailed us. “Thanks for putting together a great trip”.

These two accounts are being echoed by clients and captains all along the Pacific, from Captain Bobby McGuinness in Golfito in the South to Captain Randy Wilson in Tamarindo, and boat manager Darrell Furton in Flamingo and the Bay of Papagayo in the North. So now’s your opportunity to get in on this great bite in the upcoming months while the fish are here and the weather is ideal. Call me at one of our toll-free numbers — 1-800-634-0012, 1-800-399-8532, 1-866-978-5198 — or e-mail me and I’ll make sure you go out with one or more of the top captains fishing in Costa Rica at any time of year.
It’s been equally rewarding inshore as well. Angelo DeFalco and his friends had a banner half day earlier this month with experienced local captain Tomas Villalobos on the 28-foot Barracuda. The moment they were back within cell phone range after some inshore fishing off Playa Hermosa, just south of Los Sueños, Tomas called me to say that the guys had caught 14 — yes, fourteen — roosters that morning (and had given him a generous tip!).

Sportfishing isn’t the only thing that attracts people here. Costa Rica is one of the world’s most beautiful countries. It has a great climate. Many Americans, Canadians and Europeans have made it either their permanent home like me, built a second residence, or have bought property and contemplate building and living here sometime in the future.


It’s been a pretty good February. For the first time in a bit, we can’t complain. If the U.S. (and elsewhere as well) economy is to be judged by the number of inquiries and bookings that have come into FishCostaRica and Americana Sportfishing so far this month, the overall upturn is not too far around the corner. Let’s hope the good February continues throughout the year.

Fishing has been good also; not quite as spectacular as last February, when over a two-week period, boats out of Los Sueños Marina in the Central Pacific were raising and releasing more marlin than sails, but nobody is complaining too much, although it’s been spotty inshore on the Central Pacific. There are sails like this 130lb beauty (right) caught 20 miles out, south-east of Los Sueños, marlin and dorado offshore all along the Pacific coast, from Papagayo in the north to Golfito and Puerto Jiménez in the south, while anglers who enjoy inshore fishing are hooking their fair share of roosters, snapper, mackerel and barracuda, although not as many as they would like.

Speaking of barracuda, that’s a species most anglers overlook because they are not all that common or super big here in Costa Rica. Having said this, Captain Bobby McGuinness, who fishes out of Golfito in the South Pacific on the 37ft Cazador, recently submitted four world records to the International Game Fish Association for barracuda caught on light tackle.

Bobby is pretty well set for February, but once mid-March rolls around, he has lots of open dates. The marlin season begins down in the South Pacific mid- to end of April, as soon as the light rains move in. So if you’re considering a Costa Rican fishing vacation with marlin as your target in April-May-June (one of Bobby’s clients released this marlin — left — after a long fight), call us toll-free now — 1-800-407-9438, 1-800-399-8532, 1-866-978-5198 — or e-mail us.

Central Pacific WahooWe work with world-class American and local captains in every Costa Rica fishing destination: Rick Morrow in Papagayo on the 35ft Fish Tale II; Sonny Kocis or Rolando in Flamingo and Carillo on the 31ft Wet Ass II; Randy Wilson in Tamarindo on the 38ft Talking Fish; Johnny Cerpas on the 38ft Macushla, Bill Kieldsen on the 35ft Sailfish and Dave Mothershead on the 32ft Miss-Behav’in in Los Sueños; Bill Gannon on the 33ft Unique and Dale Weir on the 36ft Blue Water III in Quepos; Mark Corn on the 31ft Incomunicado in Puerto Jiménez; the above-mentioned Bobby McGuinness; and let’s not forget Eddie Brown in Tortuguero and Barra del Colorado on the 22ft Bull Shark over on the Caribbean side.

For every one of these guys I named there are at least five others I didn’t include for space reasons but probably should have, fine Costa Rican fishing captains who know both how to catch fish and how to look after our clients. So to make sure you fish with the best, call us toll-free now — 1-800-407-9438, 1-800-399-8532, 1-866-978-5198 — or e-mail us, and we’ll hook you up with the top captains now fishing in Costa Rica on one-day charters or on complete Costa Rica fishing vacations featuring land and air transport, ‘angler-friendly’ hotels and whatever other recreational activities you choose.


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