Los Cabos Billfish Tournament, Mexico: On the Docks

Sights from the tip of Baja

2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament marlin on lure
A leaping blue marlin makes any angler's pulse race with excitement.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit

Clay Denk sent Marlin magazine these memorable images from the 2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament, held in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. "We had a great time in Mexico," he reports. "Feel free to use any of these you want. Thanks and good fishing!"

Denk and the Sol Pursuit team won the Overall Release category in the tournament, where they released seven blue marlin and one striped marlin. This earned them a total of 3,600 points and a check for $17,500, plus another $8,700 from the Day Two Release Daily prize award. The team consists of Clay and Greg Denk, Eric and Gary Linthicum, Chris and Mike Watts and Capt. Stephen Downsworth. Fishing remained very steady during the three-day tournament, with a surprising number of blue marlin showing up. The 37 participating boats released a total of 95 billfish: 56 blue marlin, 36 striped marlin and three black marlin. All catches were verified by video, which was reviewed back at the dock by tournament judges.

The Los Cabos Billfish Tournament kicks off a string of high-profile tournaments in the Cabo San Lucas area. This year saw incredible fishing and great weather for the tournaments. Billfish are especially attracted to the region known as Los Cabos, where the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean at the tip of the Baja Peninsula. It's been a hot spot and world-record-worthy destination for decades, and has an understandably rich history in its own right. In addition, Cabo also offers some of the world's best nightlife, making it worthy of designation as a world-class sport-fishing destination.

2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament marlin lure
Sunrise on tournament days is magical. The thoughts of blue marlin in the spread are nearly overwhelming. This lure is sure to see plenty of action in the coming days.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament Sol Pursuit
Sol Pursuit trolls in search of marlin during the Los Cabos Billfish Tournament.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament blue marlin
A blue marlin comes to the leader in gorgeous blue water.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament blue with glove on bill
A good pair of gloves protects from the rough surface of a marlin's bill while the hook is removed from the fish's jaw.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament Chupacabra
Chupacabra prepares to head out at sunrise on the first day. They placed third in the tournament.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament striped marlin
A striped marlin breaks the surface of the Pacific.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament Sol Pursuit team
Three sets of fathers and sons — Denk, Watts and Linthicum — fishing together during the tournament.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament marlin release
Up close and personal with a marlin during release.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament blue marlin jump
An acrobatic blue marlin vaults itself across the Pacific in a leaping jump.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament striped marlin
Ready for release, a striped marlin comes to the leader.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament
This blue marlin was one of seven the Sol Pursuit team released in the tournament.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament blue marlin
Another great shot of a blue marlin launching itself from the sea.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament mate overboard
Mate overboard! Deckhand Sam Long held on just a little too long for this one.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament Sol Pursuit boat
Sol Pursuit has high gunwales and an extended swim platform, making for challenging working conditions for a mate wiring a blue marlin.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament marlin in water
Calm seas and great marlin fishing made for a memorable tournament.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament top release team
The Sol Pursuit team released seven blue marlin and one striped marlin to win over $26,000 in the Los Cabos Billfish Tournament.Courtesy Los Cabos Billfish Tournament
2016 Los Cabos Billfish Tournament top release team
Another look at the tournament's Top Release Team.Courtesy Clay Denk / Sol Pursuit