In Search of Monster Roosterfish

My son Charles and I are always looking for giant roosterfish— one of my favorite fish of all. It has a dorsal fin that kind of looks like the tail feathers of a rooster, thus giving it the name roosterfish. It is a member of the jack family and fights as hard as any jack does. But unlike its relatives the yellow tail and amber jack, the rooster is not good table fair. It’s just a great fighting game fish that should always be released for the next guy to enjoy.

We heard that they were spotting some roosterfish at East Cape. We decided to call a good friend of ours, Gary, of Rancho Leonero, to ask “What’s up?” and he said, “Yes, the big boys are here!” That’s all we needed to hear and we were on our way.

Rancho Leonero is one of our favorite places to stay and fish— it’s not a hotel, it’s a real fishing camp. The place sits in the mouth of the sea, no stores or tourist—just fishermen getting away from it all. The food is all home cooked, everything there is better than great, and all the people have smiles on their faces and are really happy to see you. When you arrive you’re a stranger and when you leave you’re family.

It’s not far from Cabo (about 45 minutes), or La Paz (1 hour 30 minutes), and the next day we went out with our favorite guide the famous, Santos. Looking for the monster we put on two ladyfish and started trolling. All of sudden, my baitfish started going crazy, then zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz I set the drag and the fight was on.

I asked Charles and Santos if they could see what it was because it was kicking my butt. What was this monster of a fish? Then we saw as it came shooting out the water that it was a big marlin—not in the plans, but fun and right off the shore, as well. Almost two hours later I had my dream rooster, weighing in at about 120 pounds. We were sure it was the new world record, but his life meant more to me than my name entered one more time in a book. If you’d like to watch a video of this catch, go to If you’d like to fish in Mexico, I can help. Write me at Charles and I would be happy to hear from you. Keep a tight line and if your not going to eat it, don’t kill it!


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