Reel life fishing
Bluefin Fishing Report: May 2021
May 26 2021
There are three zones where bluefin are biting off the coast of San Diego in May 2021.
May is showing solid signs of a promising 2021 bluefin fishing season. In the greater San Diego area, bluefin have been spotted in three zones so far in May. One zone is in U.S. waters, and two zones are in Mexican waters. Learn more about what is going on now off San Diego's coastline in our bluefin fishing report for May 2021.
Zone One: Already Some Bluefin Biting in
U.S. Waters
You heard it here. Bluefin are already biting in U.S. waters just beyond the NOOA Buoy, which is about 45 miles from San Diego. This has been the most lucrative spot for bluefin fishing in U.S. waters so far this season. On the U.S. side, the season is just starting to heat up, while down south Mexican waters have produced some eye-popping action so far this year. It's a great sign for what will happen in our waters in the coming weeks and months.

In addition to the NOOA Buoy, the Condom Bank is another pinnacle in the ocean off San Diego that is a favorite fishing spot. This is located about 70 miles from San Diego's shores and bluefin have been hanging out here in May as well.

Most bluefin being reeled in from the Condom Bank are smaller grade, around 25-35 pounds. Some 50 pounders are coming in too. Occasionally, a lucky soul will bring a 100 pound baby on deck, but that is more the exception than the rule so far this season around Condom. To grab the bigger fish, a 50lb line with sinker rigs have worked well, as have smaller flat falls.

It's early for big bluefin to be biting at the NOAA Buoy and Condom Bank on the U.S side. There have been a few monsters this year so far, but the season will heat up as the waters do.
The bluefin at the Condom Bank in May 2021 have been:

  • Foamers - schools of tuna breaking the surface, often while feeding
  • Breezers - schools of fish just below the surface, and
  • Meter Marks - fish identified on sonar

Now typically, foamers make for good fishing, since they are at the surface and are often feeding. Breezers can make for decent angling too.

But the bluefin aren't quite there yet this season off the Condom Bank. Thus far, bluefin have not shown interest in all the lures and tricks up fisherman's sleeves - including poppers, iron jigs, colt snipers, and more.

Have faith folks. As the water temperatures heat up, it's just a short matter of time that the fish start biting at the Condom Bank and more generally in San Diego waters.

It's still early in the season and this time of year can be described as consistent only in its inconsistency. Sure, the small guys are biting already, but the big boys - those Cow Bluefin every angler dreams of - have not shown up in U.S. waters yet. They generally start to appear near the hidden and upper hidden bank (zone two), which is a day's ride south from San Diego and is in Mexican waters.

Zones 1, 2 & 3 where bluefin have been biting.
Zone Two: Yellowtail Poppin' with
Some Bluefin Too
Zone two is a better spot for fishing right now, although not quite ideal yet. This area is about 60 miles south of San Diego and includes the upper hidden bank, another pinnacle in the ocean and a preferred congregating spot for fish.

If you're into yellowtail, the banks are poppin' right now. Yellowtail patty fishing in the area has been great! The grade remains on the smaller side, but fishing here and now makes for a fun day and a fruitful haul.

While the big boy bluefin haven't been nabbed at the banks, smaller bluefin have been caught amongst the yellowtail, so be ready for it. That's the joy and excitement of ocean fishing - anything can happen!
Captain's Tip: Bring your gear for bluefin if you are heading out to the hidden banks. You might get lucky and have a shot at decent-sized bluefin.
Zone Three: Bluefin Are Pretty Hot Right Now
Zone three is where it's at right now for bluefin fishing. This area is about 80 miles south of San Diego and there's been a ton of volume reported here from our network. Bluefin of all sizes - from little 30 pounders to monster 200 pounders - are being hauled on deck from these waters.

Fish are being successfully caught using just about every method, with the dead flyer proving to be particularly lucrative at this time. Fishing has been pretty, pretty good, despite lower than usual air temperatures and not-so-great weather having suppressed water temperatures some. As the air and water temperature continues to rise, this area will be wild in the coming days and weeks.
Ready to get your fish on?!?
We are offering a 10% discount on all 2021 trips booked on this site through May 31.