San Quintin, a quiet town found at the western shores of Baja, was not really well known for it’s fishing when it was first discovered by Portuguese explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo and later by Spaniard Sebastian Vizcaino (who we credit for naming the town as it is called today as he discovered it on the feast day of San Quintin). Looking at the geographical situation of San Quintin though, it is clear that it could be a fishing haven.
San Quintin boasts a variety of marine life ranging from halibuts in the inner shorelines where the depth of the water is just a few feet up to the yellowfins, yellowtails, rock & sea bass found at the intersection between Bahia Sta. Maria, Bahia Fatima and the Pacific Ocean (situated at the lower tip of Cabo San Quintin). The variety and abundance of fish here is mainly due to the volcanic rocks found at the base which is a good place for plankton to thrive.
The placement of the three bays act as guards against strong tides and strong current of the Pacific, making it a good place for small fish and bottom dwellers to live in. In the summer, because of the warm currents, San Quintin also hosts the annual migration of dorados and tunas just a few miles off the shore of Cabo San Quintin.
Basically, when you fish in San Quintin, no matter which part you situate your rig, you are bound to catch fish, and in abundance too. On the average, fishing trips catch around 15-30 fishes, in a wide variety, with just 6 hours of morning fishing (and those are even conservative numbers).
When in San Quintin, you will have a bevy of choices of fishing trip operators. Some have various sizes of Pangas (with the largest one able to accommodate 4 tourist fishers) for long-range fishing trips, others offer scuba diving, on top of the fishing, while others offer a whole package which includes accommodations, lunches and dinners, souvenir programs, as well as the fishing trip itself. Most of the fishing trips start at the site of the Old Mill (and Old abandoned Mill that hosted the first fishing trips in the bay, back in 90’s) and the route runs through the two rivers down to the mouth of Bahia Fatima and onto the Pacific. This way, tourists get a taste of a wide variety of fish to catch.
As for people who’ll try to fish here with their own boat, it is advised that they bring along an experienced skipper or an equivalent guide on the first try as there are possible dangers maneuvering the bay because the water is only a few feet deep inshore.
For a novice fisher’s point-of-view, a trip to San Quintin would do no wrong to you as you will surely get what you came for, and that is a great experience fishing a diverse species of fish. Besides fishing, San Quintin also boasts of an oyster farming industry, but that’s an entirely different story for another day.