The stripers are here and they are big. Averaging 20 to 40 pounds. That is huge for the Fall run, but it has become the pattern for the last five years or so. It’s probably no coincidence that we are getting a bunker run during that time, as well. There’s also sandeels in the mix.
On Friday, I made the left and ran 38 miles to the Highlands. We passed up closer fleets that had fish but a lot of boats. In those fleets, every time the fish popped up, four or five guys would run them down. Further north, where we wound up, there was very little pressure and the fish were swirling and crashing bait on the surface and down deep. We caught them on poppers, swim shads, and jigs. We had six fish between 25 and 40 pounds and released quite a few, all on spinning rods. Saturday, I returned to the scene of the crime but there were quite a few more boats and the fish were not surfacing. I got called in by a friend, Gene Linder on the Side Chick, who was working on his third big troll fish off of Long Branch. I doubled back, we put out the rods, and soon after we boated a 35 pounder on one of my homemade umbrella rigs. Another pass, and the same rig gets clobbered and we added a 30 pounder. I’m sailing Sat, and Sun, Nov 2 and 3, Open Boat, 6:30 AM to 1:30 PM $175 person, 4 people max, all fish are shared. We are probably going to troll to put fish in the box but if there is any indication that we can catch them casting or jigging, we are rigged and ready to do that. If for any reason, we do not find them locally, like as far as Seaside/Lavallette, we will run as far north as we have to and the price will go to $200 person to cover the extra fuel. We will also be returning later. The best way to reserve a spot is to call me on my cell from 5AM to 8PM. You can call right up until”Go Time”! Dave DeGennaro
Heads up for those 4 x 4 going to Loveladies. The beach about one block north of the public tennis court access ramp in Loveladies is almost unpassable. The beach is very narrow there, extremely wet and soft, with most of it sloped downward. I got stuck really bad and had to get towed off. While stuck, I watched another 4×4 try to make it only to get hung up and then turn around. Then the truck that came to pull me out got hung up in the same spot and had to turn around. He had to approach us from the north, coming in at East Coast Ave. I have been driving the beach for years and have never seen a spot like this. I now call my truck the “sand trap” LOL
Gannets And Game Fish… It’s Game On! The run arrived and it’s time to fish! There’s sand eels and bunker stretched along the beaches and with the late October new moon phase here, now’s a really good time to go hunt for trophy size striped bass.
Here’s a comprehensive the fishing report to update for Monday evening, October 28, 2019. Let’s dive into the the recent action recap.
Jersey Shore Striped Bass Fishing
In the past 5-7 days the Jersey Shore striped bass fishery progressed leaps and bounds. With the arrival of gannets and a healthy first wave of fish the local water are improving. On Thursday a couple striped bass were picked by local anglers working on the troll. Friday the bite improved and showed some special moments. Saturday was all out, nothing short of spectacular. Some calling it a bite of epic proportion. A quick look at social media and it’s clear Saturday morning was one for the memory books! From trolling to jigging and casting lures on top the striped bass were snapping. The areas from Seaside north was productive.
Coincidentally, the Sea Shell’s Striped Bass Derby (this weekend) had solid results. The majority of boats ran north and fished the waters from Seaside to Manasquan where a good body of fish was holding. Would be interested to see how this year’s Derby it stacked up against the last ten years of results.
Top Three Catches – Boat Name, Angler 44.90# – Mud Duck, Ryan Schramm 43.35# – Lucky Stripes, Bob Bowden 42.60# – Sea Eagle, Rick Lamb
This year’s event raised $50,000 for support of the Beach Haven Charter Boat Association initiative to pump new blood into the reef program which has been dormant for so many years.
Linda Lee Sportfishing Report by Captain Ryan Horton
On Saturday Capt. Ryan had out Joe, son Joey, Mike, Steve, and camera man Jim out striper fishing. We headed north and put the lines in off Chadwick Beach at sunrise. Within 20 minuets we had birds working. As we trolled through them the screen lit up and then both bunker spoon rods went off. Once we landed both bass we set out the lines and within minutes another double header. We managed to land 6 bass up to 45 lbs. We switched over to the jig but could not get a bight. The guys wanted to wreck fish so we switched over and fished the Axle Carlson. The first drop we got little Joey on a keeper sea bass. There’s nothing better then putting a smile on an 8 year olds face. We fished till noon before the winds picked up and made wreck fishing difficult. If you’re looking to get in on the action give a call. ~ Captain Ryan P: 609-276-8032.
Big Inshore Critters
By now most have heard about the numerous bluefin tuna and thresher sharks caught by boats looking for striped bass. They’ve been hanging around for a couple weeks now and if the bait (abundance of sand eels and small bonita) stays they could be here for weeks more.
Anglers trolling for striped bass have hooked into these and most are spooled with only few able to manage the big pull on small under gunned “striped bass” tackle. These “ghosts” are also a great target for anglers looking for top water popping action. We suggest Tsunami Surface Blaster which has accounted for an alarming number of bluefins tuna this summer and it continues to fool tuna this fall. Also RonZ Lures are a stand out producer year in and year out.
Andres Hernandez and crew got into good fishing recently. On Thursday they were looking for bass, pre-fishing for the Shell Derby. A screamer hit a MagicTail Mojo Lure… turns out to be a 120# bluefin tuna. The battle on a Penn 330GTI with 30# braid was WAY too light for the task but the crew did an amazing job and got it in for the kill! Fishing he same waters a day or two later the crew got into great striped bass fishing and finished towards the top of the Shell’s Leaderboard.
Fish Head Alumni Dave was out fishing with his buddy Chad aboard the Gobbagol this weekend. They reported great striped bass fishing working the waters of off Seaside. They also got an interesting bite on the troll. Dave reported, “We hooked up with a thresher shark (easily 200#) on a bunker spoon. It took to the air jumping all over the place putting on a show. We eventually got it close to the boat but it parted ways boat side. The little Avet Fishing Reel really held up its end of the bargain. That’s why you buy American and don’t fish cheap Chinese garbage!”
LBI Surf Fishing Report
The leading edge of the run has reached our beaches and more waves will show with each passing tide. Attention all chunkers!!! It’s time to soak bunker on the surf.
Finally a fish over 20# in the derby so it shows the larger fish are roaming the beaches of LBI. With the water temp at 58 it’s prime striped bass fishing but also the temperature when dogfish move in. Currently there’s lots of them so bring extra bait to work through them.
Sunday’s hard northeast blow had most comfortable on the couch watching football; however hardcore surf rats were out. Some live for these conditions because it puts fish on the beach. One of those anglers out battling rough conditions was Kevin Laverty. His name should not come as a surprise as he is a hardcore fisherman. He won this past Spring Derby’s bluefish division with a 16.34# fish. He also had the second biggest blue, 14.92#.
Monday Bill Heade put some time in on the surf. He posted this photo with a caption, “The best part of working the night shift is you can fish all day!” Bill caught one bass fishing Fish Head Salties (salted clam). He checked it in for the LBI Surf Fishing Classic and currently sits in third place.
LBI Surf Fishing Classic
Top Three Largest Striped Bass
25.12# Brandon Pomykacz 11.54# Kevin Laverty 11.20# William Heade
@LifeOfNutt sent in this photo today… “The Vegan was out on the surf slaying it today!” Here’s a photo of Griffin Pounds with a striper he caught off the LBI surf on Monday.
Inshore Bottom Fishing
Inshore wreck fishing is good with sea bass and tog fishing offering the best opportunities. White chins are crushing green crabs and knuckle heads are nibbling clam and squid. Be sure to bring a dehooker and extra bait as some areas, especially the two local artificial reefs had a lot of dogfish over the weekend.
Barnegat Bay & Inlet Fishing
The Barnegat Bay holds a good number of striped bass. Anglers are catching on the flats, sod banks and tidal creeks. The docks and bridges also have life. The main thoroughfares of Double Creek and Oyster Creek are two great sections of water to hunt striped bass in the bay during the fall. Casting lures as well as drifting or anchoring presenting live or dead baits is the way to get ’em. Spot, eels, clams will get them to commit. As far as lures we suggest Stillwater Smack-It Poppers, Bomber Long Shots, SP Minnows and Storm Shads.
The inlet rocks always holds life and right now it’s tog and striped bass. They are both roaming the rocks and are hungry. Anglers are catching tog on crabs while lures and live bait like eels and spot are bass to bite.
In the bay blue claw crabs are still active. Get in on the late season crabbing now while it’s still good.
Fish Head Charters
Fish Head Charters is into good fun fishing on all recent trips. We continue to do combos targeting both striped bass and tog. Some days the albies show but for the most part this has been a sporadic thing.
Working inshore structure we are catching good numbers of blackfish when the conditions allow. So far this fall the biggest is this 8lber. All of the magic is done with Magictail tog jigs (baited with live green crab).
Low light fishing has been best for hunting striped bass. We haven’t switched gears yet but we’ll be soon jumping into the troll game. It always take some time as I (and most of Fish Head Charters clients) prefer hunting and presenting with a stalking light tackle approach. Live bait and heavy gear trolling is our last resort.
Our last trip had a great golden hour session. The first hour was full of action with active bass. Here’s Jack K with one of many from the trip.
Been out almost every day except for today Sunday, which I will get to later. Inlet and back bay bassing is where it should be this time of year. Play the tides and time right and you can almost count on enough action to make you want to come back for more. Friday’s trip with John Lopez Ona proved that point. I had him into bass on plugs, Midway Lure’s JB Swimmer, before sun up. Once the fish moved down the water column as the day got brighter we switched over to the live stuff which proved more than effective. What was great was, I stuck tags in two fish over 28” to be hopefully caught another day. Catch, tag, photo, & release. I like it. See photo of John with a 29” bass before I stuck a tag in it. Based on the results of this Saturday/Sunday’s Sea Shell Tournament if looks like we are starting to see the first wave of bigger fish come within striking distance. There was something like 245 anglers that weighed in 69 bass. The winning fish was 51.60 lbs., and there were 9 fish in the 40 to 50 lbs. range. Being a member of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association I was at the tournament ceremony Sunday afternoon at which the association was presented with a check for $50,000 to go towards the purchase and deployment of two tug boats to be part of the artificial reef system off the southern portion of LBI.
On the nature side of things: NJ’s coastal waters are void of any natural reef system. Our coastal bottom consists of plain old sand, silt, and clay, with some high points and low points. Reefs, be it natural or artificial, not only provide a hard substrate for fish, shellfish and crustaceans, fishing grounds for anglers, and underwater structures for scuba divers, but they are nursery grounds for countless marine organisms. Our reef system is strategically located along the coast so that at least one reef site is within easy boat range of 12 New Jersey ocean inlet. Unfortunately, artificial reefs do not last forever. They sink, break down or get buried by sand. We, the recreational anglers are the ones that need to continue to support and fund this program so that future generations can continue to benefit from the bounties that artificial reefs support.
This past weekend I had return client David and his 9yr old son Desi from Manhattan, NY out for an afternoon 6hr striped bass charter. The goal was to try and catch a striped bass as big as Desi, so with reports of a few big fish caught close to home in the morning, we started to work those areas in the afternoon. We marked several fish but were not able to get any of them to bite. We had a couple humpback whales airing out of the water and putting on a show around the boat as well as a sun fish that swam next to us for a while. With no bites on the troll and not much daylight left, we steamed back towards the inlet and put in some OT where Desi was able to connect with a bass on a popper before we had to head in. It was not the big one he was looking for but at least they were able to head home with dinner and smiles on their faces.
The bass are still a little far north of us but they are starting to show more and more every day as they migrate into our area. I only have a couple weekend dates available in November but I also have 11/5 Election Day and 11/11 Veterans Day available as well as Thanksgiving week. I also have this Sunday 11/3 available for private charter or open boat. I expect November striped bass fishing to be excellent with the good reports and mass of fish from up north that will be migrating through our area.
If you are interested in getting out please give us a call to book your trip. Call or text Captain Mike to get out on the water or send us a message through our website! (609)-709-7264
Most of the bigger Stripers (30 to 50 pounders) are being caught from the Manasquan Inlet northward this past week, but we should start seeing this 1st wave of quality bass. It’s the anglers preference, but “CPR” is not a bad idea on these bigger fish (Catch, Photo, Release). We had Striped Bass picking up live baits and bucktails tipped with artificials last week as we worked some areas out front and in the backwaters. New clients Eli Sachs and two of his buddies landed close to a dozen bass, keeping 2 for the table. We had a third keeper boat side, but it broke the line in the strong current.
I will be back on the water this weekend targeting Striped Bass, Sea Bass, and possibly Tog for my charters. I do a few weekday and weekend afternoon dates available in November. December weekends are open for Striped Bass and Tog.
If interested in booking a charter, book through 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.
It’s more like catching stripers and watching bluefin tuna, as the next one I hook, will be the first. Though, I feel we are getting better with every trip.
The stripers and the tuna are about 35 miles north, so it’s going to be a long day on the water. Good action on 20 to 40 plus pound bass, jigging or trolling. The tuna are 50 to 100 plus pound fish, skyrocketing out of the water, crashing at the surface, but it’s hard to get one to eat. We do have the proper spinning outfits and lures to throw on board but if you happen to have your own, by all means. Should be a beautiful ocean Friday and Saturday if the marine forecast is right. Running Open Boat these days Friday, Oct 25 and Sat, Oct 26. Splitting our time between bass and bluefin. 7AM to 4 or 5 PM. $250 person. 4 people max. All fish are shared.
Well the recent weather pattern has been less that favorable most days for fishing, however, fish like most migratory organisms use internal and external cues and may move regardless of weather. Case in point, stripers the past week. The northern NJ coast saw an influx of great numbers of quality fish in the 20-40 pound plus fish. I can tell you this, we have the bait so once those fish slide our well fishing will be nothing but world-class. Locally, the inlet and back are providing ample opportunities on bass from 20” to 30” or more. Artificials are working at times, but live bait such as spots are not failing to produce. Saturday morning’s trip produced 10 bass to 28”. I am sailing every day right now and still have dates available including magic hour trips. If you want to get penciled in let me know.
On the nature side of things: Something I do almost on a daily basis I participate in “citizen science”. Citizen science is powered by individuals, communities/organizations, or global science research conducted by citizens. In my one attached picture, you will see an American Littoral Society (ALS) spaghetti tag behind the dorsal fin of one of the striped bass I tagged an released on Saturday. This is one of the examples of citizen science I am involved in and have been for over 40 years now! I have to purchase the tags myself, funded by you when you take a trip with me. Two recent returned fish came within 10 miles of where they were tagged and were recaptured within three months of being rereleased. You see, catch and release works when you handle your fish with care. There are so many ways you can get involved, just do it. OK, I’ll get off my soapbox now. LOL
Great weekend of fishing the waters! Saturday morning was a bit more choppy than dawn patrol anglers expected. The forecasted north west winds were straight north making sloppy chop. Fortunately it laid down and made for a beautiful Saturday. Saturday night was as tranquil as it gets and the night shift crew took advantage. Sunday started off with a flawless morning but things got sour with heavy winds and rain. Here’s the Fishermans Headquarters Weekend Recap Fishing Report.
Diversified Action Inshore
From bottom fishing to trolling to jigging and casting anglers are catching a spread of species.
Inshore Bottom Fishing
The wrecks and reefs have a lot to offer. Anglers are catching tog, sea bass, triggerfish and porgies. Store staffers Kelley and Frezza were out early on Sunday morning hunting structure. They reported good fun tog fishing.
Striped Bass & Bluefish
Dan D was aboard the Morning Wood with Cole Cronin Saturday morning. They made a run north to hunt down the bass and tuna. They scored the first but couldn’t get the later to bite. Dan reported, “There were sick feeds with tuna airing out. We just couldn’t hook em.”
Inshore Sharks & Tuna
Right now there are really big fish within sight of land. The abundance of bluefin tuna is impressive but frustrating. Anglers targeting them report they are pushing water and very hard to get a bite. Some anglers have caught but it isn’t an easy feat. There’s also an abundance of thresher sharks. Most are being caught by accident while targeting striped bass on the troll, however some are specifically looking for them and hooking up.
One big catch was reported today from Jon Kelly and Max Goldman who were out fishing aboard the Outcast. They reported while out hunting mako sharks about 30 miles off, they hooked into, had an epic battle and caught this 341 thresher on a mackerel.
LBI Surf Fishing Report
This Saturday was the Merchantville Fishing Club’s ASAC Surf Fishing Tournament. We were expecting to see some striped bass since the beaches not too far north had good recent catches. But out of the 26 (six angler) teams and another 15 individual anglers no legal striped bass were caught, only some shorts (not score-able). Also not score-able, a bunch of out of seas fluke were caught. The only scoring fish caught were blues and dogfish. Ocean City Fishing Club Blue won with 70 points. American Anglers B and Creek Keepers finished 2nd and 3rd. Lynda Greaves won for biggest fish and most overall points.
Fish Head Charters
A weekend like this is what we all needed! It’s always great to have a good weather Saturday. I had return clients Konrad and Nate two young but passionate light tackle anglers with strong drive to catch fish. We started off the dawn patrol with fun fishing, catch and release stripers. In the first hour or so we released about 6 bass up to 30″, two were keeper size. Mid trip we decided to make a run around to search down albies. The guy knew it has been slow but they both really wanted to catch their first. We found very few false albacore but were patient. With time came a couple quick shots at them and they guys both managed to hook up.
The afternoon trip was a total tog trip. Very good fishing with lots of fun. Thanks to Rhodan for locking us in on top of the fish!
Saturday night was the first night shift trip of the fall and it was on! In total we released about 20 striped bass. Anyone looking to get out and target striped bass at night? These are one of a kind trips! So long as the conditions and tide align it’s game on! For those interested get in contact with me NOW to be on the call list. 1-2 angler 3 hour trips, $300 total.
Striped bass action is really starting to show signs of life from the back bays , inlets and along the beaches. The abundance of various forage [ bait – bunker, mullet, sardines , squid , sand eels ……] along our coast is setting up to greet and host an epic 2019 fall season!! Migrating species such as stripers, bluefish, false albacore bonito and even bluefin tuna have been encountered well within eye sight of the beach!! Inshore structures. wrecks, rock piles and alike have been very rewarding while targeting black fish , while deeper offshore structures are rewarding with both seabass , porgies and various other species.
The 2019 fall season is underway !! Book today!! Ill be running everyday through the month of November so call to reserve your date or spot!! Wishing everyone fair winds and calm seas,