We ran to Barnegat Ridge on Sunday. Two to three foot long swell, very fishable. Had John Post, his son-in-law Tim Smith, and grandson, 13 year old Timmy Smith all of Mountainside, NJ. Stopped about a mile and a half shy of the North Ridge as I usually do. This way the lines go out in the deep water and we troll towards the high ground. As Nick was setting out the fourth rod in the spread, a cedar plug, it went spooling off in his hand. He locked it up and Timmy boated a nice bonita. As we drew closer to the Ridge, there were slicks and chicks. This is best case scenario wherever you are fishing, but especially here. The slicks were so fresh that you could smell them 30 yards away and there were a dozen to twenty chick birds picking at them at any given time. I could here the rods going off in my head…….but it never happened. Killer fish and bait readings throughout the water column. I gave it two hours of tight turns and nothing. There were quite a few spinner sharks thrashing and crashing so this is the only thing I could suspect might have been putting off the species we were looking for. I brought a can of chum and some fresh bunker out with us so I asked our crew if they wanted to try sharking and they were game. It took about twenty minutes and the first rod went off, Timmy jumped on the rod and brought a 60 lb dusky to the boat. Then two rods went off at the same time, we lost one and Timmy finessed a 120 lb dusky to be released on the other. We were doing it all with 20 to 30 class gear so it was a lot of fun. Nick and I were watching the balloons and we both happen to see a fish jump over one of the balloons. I said “that was a mahi” and he said ‘Yeah, I know”. He had eaten a hunk of bunker on a 9/0 circle hook rigged on 200 lb mono. Once again, Timmy was on the rod and boated this 8 lb square head baby bull mahi. This kid was a true angler. Smooth on the rod. Here he his on one of those dusky sharks: www.youtube.com/watch?v=06cE7EZZ-VI
If we had stayed on the troll, it might have been a one bonita day that was over in the first five minutes. That bucket of chum and fresh bait turned it into a decent catch with plenty of action. Thank God for Plan B!
Yesterday (Wed) I had Nick Honachefsky of the new series Saltwater Underground on board. He was hosting friends Sean Reilly and WWE pro wrestler Jake the Snake Roberts, along with Jake’s son Dustin. Jake caught a nice striper on light tackle at the Barnegat Inlet jetty. We moved back into the bay and hammered away at short fluke jigging leadheads and Gulp for a few hours.
Running Open Boat to Barnegat Ridge tomorrow, Friday July 20. Leaving at 11AM, returning at 6PM. Trolling for bonita, mahi, or any other high speed fish that are in that neighborhood. I’ll have the chum and bait on board if we want to try a few hours of light tackle sharking. $175 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared. You can call for a spot right up until we leave. I’m available to call until 9PM tonight (Thurs) or as early as 5AM tomorrow (Fri). Sat is booked. Sun and Monday, July 22 and 23 are potential bay/inlet charter days as the ocean will be a little rough from Saturday afternoon on through the next few days.
Looking to run offshore for tuna next week Open Boat or Charter Sat/Sun/Mon, Trolling and chunking. Probably running 80 miles plus each way unless things heat up closer. Leaving at 2AM, returning around 4 PM, sometimes later, so if you have to be back at a certain time, you won’t make it. $400 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared. Reservations required. Everything is provided. If you have a favorite rod and reel, and it’s appropriate, you can bring it. Hoping we get a nice stretch of weather, we are due.
Timmy Smith of Mountainside, NJ with bonita and mahi.
Jake the Snake Roberts and Nick Honachefsky with striper
Capt. Dave DeGennaro
Hi Flier Sportfishing