The stripers are finally within striking distance. 20 to 30 miles north of our inlet today the boats caught really well on 15 to 30 pound fish from the shoreline out to the three mile line. Casting, trolling, and bunker snagging are all putting fish in the boat. They could be closer by the time we set sail this weekend but even if they’re not, we’re headed to wherever the bite is.
Sailing Open Boat or Charter Sat, Sun, and Mon, Nov 3, 4, and 5, 7AM to 3PM on Sat, Nov 3 and 6AM to 2PM on Sun, Nov 4 and Mon, Nov 5. (Careful, the end of Daylight Savings Time will turn the clocks back one hour at midnight Saturday night, that’s why our sailing time is different from Sat to Sun).
$200 person, 4 people max, all fish are shared.
The only dates other than these that I have left in November are: 10, 11, 20. December is wide open and should have awesome striper fishing.
Things really started to heat up between sight casting for surface breaking albies with light spinning tackle and employing a combination of both artificial and live bait for a robust striped bass bite!!
With things settling down and cooler temps [ other than a brief mid week warm up] on hand the action should continue to improve with both size and quantity!!
November 7 and 20th are my last remaining dates for morning departures until December. I do have a few afternoon dates still available for those looking for a quick fix of fall fishing .
With the amount of bait along our beaches, this fall has the potential for being as good as it gets. Already the numbers of bonito along the beaches is like I have never experienced before. A friend of mine with two other boated over 80 on Friday. All on light spinning gear. Talk about world class. Mixed in were some false albacore and chub mackerel. Although not showing much along the beach, schools of adult bunker are commonplace just a few miles off the beach. As usual for this time of year plenty of bass and blues to be had around the inlet and backbay as we await to migratory schools. Some years the schools are here by now, some years they are not. However, my records which go back a few decades show about 8 out of 10 years we have migratory bass by Halloween.
Next week, week of Nov 5th, I am off and looking to fill in some dates starting with this Saturday, Nov 3rd. So if you are itching to get into some world class light tackle fishing contact me soon as I know my dates will be filling in quickly.
If you have some time check out my Barnegat Bay weather video from Saturday’s storm. Barnegat Bay Weather
Barnegat Bay Weather And don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel so you can get notified as soon as I upload a fishing video. I plan on uploading a lot of videos of this fall’s action.
Trust me – I’m chomping at the bit to get back to what I love to do – FISHING!! We have been waiting for the new 250HP repower, but due to some shipping issues with the manufacturer it’s taking longer than expected. I’m hearing that the new engine should be installed and back in the water before Halloween. I have been dying to try out the new MINN KOTA trolling motor (video below) as I will most likely start running Sea Bass and Blackfish trips – may start this season but I have to get my feet wet with the new trolling motor.
Most of my morning Striped Bass trips are booked, but I do have the following dates remaining. Early December is still open and we may stay in for Blackfish. The following time slots available for Striped Bass: 11/4 afternoon, 11/5 afternoon, 11/6 afternoon, 11/7 afternoon, 11/8 afternoon, 11/9 afternoon, 11/11 afternoon, 11/16 morning, 11/17 afternoon, 11/18 afternoon, Thanksgiving morning – 6-10am, 11/24 afternoon), 11/26 afternoon, 11/28 afternoon, 11/30 afternoon.
If interested in booking a charter, book our site (reelreactioncharters.com) or call/text 609-290-7709. As always, we use the highest quality gear and everything is included: gear, live spot (20-30 per charter), tackle, fish-cleaning, and ICE! It’s “no worries” fishing. Just come aboard and FISH.
The cold air filled in early this fall but us anglers are fine with it! There’s fat ones showing up in our waters. For over a week the northern part of the state has produced big striped and soon these cows will come home. Some better fish are already showing! If you didn’t already… now’s the time to get things in order. You best be prepared.
Wednesday was the Hunter’s Moon. It was said to have helped illuminate game for hunters but in our book it’s the Fishing Moon! On the Jersey Shores this is a time when the mullet run ends, other baits (spearing, bay anchovies, peanut bunker) make a move, adult bunker pod up and migrating striped bass begin to arrive and take hold in our waters.
This weekend’s coastal storm will produce hazardous conditions for mariners but a setup that surf rats dream about! Such a bummer for the striped bass boat anglers because this weekend is the Sea Shell Striped Bass Derby. This tournament is well know for being held in some rough weather. Looks like this year will be another one.
LBI Surf Fishing Report
The LBI surf temperatures are just now breaking below the 60 degree mark. All week it was in the low 60’s (61-21) but today (10/25) we got a 59 degree reading. As the fall progresses it’s only going down and prime time striped bass fishing awaits. The mullet run is just about over but there are still a few late stragglers running the shoreline.
A few recent striped bass surf reports…
One customer (who would like to remain anonymous) playing hooky from work Wednesday got two short striped bass. A few days prior another angler Mike Mitryk got a couple bass plugging sunset on the surf. One was a griller, just making 28″ mark.
Better fish are filling into our waters but we’ve yet to see a quality harvest. We expect to see a good weigh in soon. So far the best catch we’ve heard about from the LBI surf came in today.
A local angler from Manahawkin, Ed Gorleski stopped in and shared a nice report, “Fishing the mid-island surf I caught and released a 32″ bass on an SP Minnow lures. It was my only fish.”
More info from the LBI Surf… Last Weekend (Saturday) was Merchantville’s ASAC Surf Tournament on the beaches of LBI. It was tough to get excited about fishing for small stuff when it’s raining and blowing, so attendance was off from last year. The catches were mostly 12-18” bluefish. There were a couple kingfish, one weakfish and a sundial. The top teams were; 1- RH Rods, 2- Surf & Land “B” Team, 3- American Angler. The largest fish was an 18″ bluefish caught by Shane Ranier. Nick Frungillo took the most points Calcutta. For the women’s division, Margie Skelly had the most fish points and biggest with a 16” blue. Val Vischoric took most points and largest fish for youth.
Fish Head Charters
I was on the on the water Monday with store staffer Max. Right off the bat we were into a couple striped bass and bluefish on plugs. It was a quick first light bite so we took a look for albies. Found bait but no footballs feeding. Everything seems to be scattered. After looking around we ran way up the beach. We found some good looking bunker pods but passed them up in search of albies. Finally found some fast moving pop-up feeds where we caught bonita but no greenies. On our way back in we took a look at some bayside spots and found small bass.
Wednesday (10/24) Brooks from Cortland Line Co was aboard for a morning fly session. We took a look up the beach and found bait stacked. No sooner it came alive with albies. The powerful westerly winds made fly casting very difficult but with proper boat positioning we made it happen. In my opinion there’s nothing better than catching false albacore on light tackle.
Today Thursday (10/25) started off active with healthy bonus tag size (24-28″) striped bass. Both Max and I had these stripers eating bucktails. It was awesome to see that two or three were keeper size fish. After catching about a dozen we switched gears and looked for albies. As far as quantity it was nothing like yesterday but greenies were present. The feeds were quick and small but Max managed to get hooked up with only a few tried. He then the wheel so I could work the long rod. Despite having a number of good opportunities I couldn’t connect.
Cooler temps has started to heat up and stoke the flames of our awaited fall migration! The Northern reaches of our coast has encountered the first wave of the fall migration while locally stripers, blues, tog, albies , bonito and even a few leftover Spaniards are roaming about.
The backback, inlet and surrounding waters are all producing a mix of the above, with the bays waters cooling down and the bay’s stock pile of abundant forage starting to exit the back bays providing a solid meal plan to welcome newly arrive guest this fall should be another one for the books! [ fingers crossed]
The extended weather temp trend continues downward and into it’s season spiral which should only ignite this powder keg!
I have this Saturday October 27th afternoon for a 3-4 hour [ departure and return approx noon to sunset] .
The crew aboard Fish Head Charters had a great morning trip. It started off with a good dawn patrol bite. We had some small blues and schoolie bass on light tackle. Blowups on poppers and I had one bite on the fly rod but dropped it. Blake was dialed in and got four bass on a lead head tipped with a softbait. After having a solid half hour of fun we decided to make a move and look out front. A short run and found the same bait that’s been stacked up for weeks but this time… it was frothy! Albies busting!!!
Long story short, the bite was on! Lots of fun with tight lines with screaming drags. Things got frustrating once the run and gun crowd showed up zig-zagging in every which direction with no patience or respect. Luckily we already had enough fun and called it a day. I could care less if someone idles by and bumps the boat. But snow plowing through with motors screaming and wake swamping is just inconsiderate.
Got a report from a friend who was fishing close by to us and he jigged up two striped bass. With a couple big piles of bunker, an active whale and brown clouds of anchovies it’s on!
Gotta match the hatch!!! Top: Live Anchovies – Bottom: Hand Tied Anchovies Imitation by me.
Captain John Lewis of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association, who runs the charter boat “Insatiable” out of Morrison’s Marina, is walking around with a smile on his face. Captain John says to all who hear him, “The ocean temperatures are finally dropping so the bass cannot be far behind.
There are reports of big bass to the north of Long Beach Island feeding on schools of bunker, and these bass should be off Beach Haven any day now. Between the cool weather dropping water temperatures, and northwest winds driving baitfish from the bay waters into the ocean, a perfect recipe seems to be forming for striped bass action.
There are currently good numbers of bass in the bay waters, but they seem to be mostly schoolie size fish. The bigger bass are in the ocean and will be caught in two primary ways. Many captains will look for schools of bunker and work their magic with the “snag and drop” technique whereby live bunker are snagged and used immediately as bass candy. The other method is trolling lures such as bunker spoons or Mojos to attract action. Either way, the fish will be in the 25-40 pound category right now.
In other BHCFA action, Captain Ray Lopez had the “Miss Liane” out recently looking for tuna and mahi. They left the boat at 3am and once they set up on the troll, they had two fish on immediately. Throughout the day the crew landed over 15 fish for an action packed day.
Additional information on the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association can be found at www.BHCFA.net
Heading out Sun, Oct 21 and Mon, Oct 22. Sailing Open Boat or Charter. 7AM to 3PM (or later). Making a left out of Barnegat Inlet and cruising the shoreline until we find life. Birds, readings, breaking fish. Good chance we could run into albies, bonita, or stripers. I will have spinning and jigging gear on board for anything that arises. I will also be packing the trolling gear in case we have to. Snagging rods in case the bunker show. I have no limit as to how far north we will run. If we don’t find them close, we could end up at the Shrewsbury Rocks, I get there at least a few times a season when I have to. $200 person, 4 person max, all fish are shared.
The days get shorter, cool air fills in, water temps fall, bait moves and game fish predate. This is fishing during the transition of autumn! What a great time to be on Long Beach Island!
The recent chill has started the season’s cooling trend with the LBI ocean surf temperature is in the mid 60’s, some areas of the bay in the mid to high 50’s and others range in the 60’s. Opposite from the spring, the ebb tide is cooler while the flood is warmer.
One of the best mullet run in a long time lingers on and clouds of bay anchovies are along the beaches. Having their way are small bluefish, spike weakfish and the occasional false albacore and bonita. The waters offshore and some areas north have lights out fishing with these small pelagics. Hopefully they slide our way in bigger numbers soon. Last year this was the time it turned on!
LBI Surf Fishing Report
Small blues rule the roost as we bridge the gap between the Mullet Run and the Fall Run. Soon the migrating striped bass will move into our waters. Typically they arrive in good numbers around Halloween.
This morning we heard of a surf side striped bass caught and released on a plug.
Right now the variety of summertime species remain. Kingfish, fluke, puppy drum, croakers and pompano are good species to target. All of these species were reported in the surf in recent days. Anglers fishing small hooks rigs baited with clam / worm / squid are finding the panfish assortment his past week.
To target the blues fish lures or mullet on the classic doodle bug rig.
Brown sharks are still hanging around with a couple recent reports from anglers chunking bunker looking for the fall’s first classy striped bass. For those that didn’t get their fill, this us the last hurrah for brownies.
The Merchantville Fishing Club’s 2nd Annual Surf Fishing Tournament is this weekend. This team and individual ASAC tournament will be on the beach of LBI is this Saturday October 20. Register now by calling Mike at 856-466-9546.
Land Based Tog Fishing On LBI
It’s prime time tog fishing season at the Barnegat Light Inlet State Park. The Barnegat Inlet Jetty is home to an awesome fishy, one of New Jersey’s best land based tog spots. The fall is a great time to fish the Inlet Jetty. Anglers are having a blast day in and day out. Get in on the action will the fishing is good.
Here’s a recent report from Khoa (@thatasianangler), “Fished with a couple friends and caught. We got our three man limit of tog up to 19.5 inches. All on green crabs from Fish Heads and Bottom Sweeper Jigs. Nothing feels better than a big tog slurp when it picks up your jig!” Photo above.
Yesterday Jeff C. got a nice fat keeper tog on the jetty first thing in the morning.
The Inlet rocks of Barnegat Light offer great tog fishing and still sheepsheads and triggerfish; however, we expect those two species to slow as the water cools more.
Barnegat Bay Fishing Report
The backwaters of Long Beach Island offer productive fishing opportunities all fall. Right now there’s good fishing (no quality size that we’ve heard about yet) along the sod banks, flats and thoroughfares.
With a light tackle approach fishing plugs these fish are a be tons of fun! These school size striped bass will soon increase in size when the migrating fish show up.
The blowfish continue but fill the cooler reports have slowed. There’s still time to get out and enjoy the awesome showing of puffer we had this season. Land based anglers are picking too, photo above.
Inshore Fishing Report
Better fish are starting to show! Two Fish Head’s alumni caught some quality this week. Both were fishing the waters of Monmouth County. Very soon some of these will be close to LBI.
First Mike Kelly was fishing on Monday and trolled up this pig!
Then Tuesday Dan was out on the water and had an awesome evening session. He reported, “We trolled and picked up two fish then on the way home we came across bunker pods and it came alive. The top water bite was really good on the Big Bone Doc!!!” Photo below
Inshore fishing is currently made up of good bottom fishing at wrecks and reef sites. Sea bass, tog, porgies and triggerfish are on the snags.
Ryan Warford was out recently and hit a few wrecks. He reported, “Lots of fish at all three wrecks we fished! We caught about 200 sea bass, only 10 keepers, five porgies and albies out the wazoo.”
We got word from a few different anglers the Hogy Epoxy jigs are dynamite on both the sea bass jigging and casting to the false albacore. We just got a restocking delivery in today. Stop in if you need some. Sorry we don’t have enough for online sales.
Albies are around in the local waters.
Jersey’s Big Game Fishing Report
It’s that time of year when the bluefin tuna come in close as they migrate south. But it’s also the time that weather windows get short. Traditionally speaking Halloween to Thanksgiving and a week or two after is the best time to look for them. The Jersey Coast’s waters from 3 to 30 miles can be productive. Popping as well as jig, chunk and trolling will catch these powerful creatures. By far popping is the most challenging but also rewarding. For those who have not caught a tuna on a popper you have to seek out this exhilarating experience.
This year it looks like they are ahead of schedule. Tuna showed up strong on the inshore grounds and a number of boats got into the action! Before this blow, strong bluefin tuna reports came in from all over. Good new from the Mudhole – Glory Hole, Chicken Canyon and also Lemkies. We heard one report of tuna outside of the Barnegat Ridge.
Chris DeGennaro aboard the Kaley Marie shared a report, “The kids cranked their arms off all day reeling in albies… Finally we got the right bite late in the afternoon.” *Report from Sunday 10/14
One good report came from the Reel Fishers out of Barnegat Light. On their last tuna trip they had Dante from MagicTails aboard and they found fish. Word was some new MagicTail products in the pipeline were being tested and caught!
Feedback From Happy Traveling Customers
Big shout out to Fish Heads. Thanks fro setting me up with the gear and lures to land this awesome fish! ~Mark Garcia
Adam Sherer and Martin Truex Jr had a successful quick Canadian Big Tuna Strike Mission fishing with Walter Bruce.