LBI Fishing Report

Fall is here and the Mullet Run is on. Right now there is good fishing for a variety of species such as blues, kingfish, weakfish, blowfish, tog and striped bass. Here’s the LBI Fishing Report for Sunday September 25, 2021.

Here’s a Saturday late afternoon fishing report update video. Just a heads up this is a longer one with some good info on the back half. Don’t check out early.

Things got going last week and really ramped up around this week’s moon (Monday night was the full moon). The Mullet Run here on Long Beach ISland is firing on all cylinders with both bluefish, striped bass and weakfish gorging on finger mullets all throughout the bays and inlets. Sunrise and sunset are undoubtedly the best times to fish during the Mullet Run. However some days you can catch ’em good at high noon.

When casting artificials this time of year it is a must to match the hatch. Fish are keyed in on mullet so topwater poppers, small pencils and spooks will work like magic. Also small swimming plugs in the 3-5” range can be very effective. Our favorite mullet run lures are the three classics: Stillwater Smack-It, Bomber Windcheater and the Cordell Red Fin. A couple new baits that are consistently raising fish are the Yo-Zuri 3D Inshore Top Knock Pencil and the Yo-Zuri 3D Twitch Bait.

Yo-zuri is well know for making very good lures. This here is their Top Knock Pencil which is a phenomenal top water lure that has a perfect mullet profile, puts off a v-wake and has a great top water action when worked with the right candace. Simply deadly!

Barnegat Inlet Fishing Report

At this point of the year there isn’t a better area to fish than inlets. The summertime species exit and the fall species arrive. Add in baits flushing in and out with the tide and we get some great fishing.

Case and point is the bluefish action the past couple of weeks and this morning’s weakfish blitz. We received a handful of reports all themed around active weakfish crashing bait during the morning hours.

Tog fishing is and has been phenomenal with anglers catching 20-30-50+++ fish a day. Good numbers BUT keepers are hard to find. A couple anglers caught keeper tog today but it requires dedication, skill and some luck.

The triggerfish are also chewing and a few sheepshead. Sand Fleas have been more productive with the triggers and sheeps although they will almost always eat any type of crab offering.

Aaron Parker stopped in mid-day looking for bait. He wanted live green crab but we were sold out. We have sand fleas so he got them and hit the jetty with friend Ashley Webb. They reported back, “Caught a bunch of short tog and sea bass. Ashley caught a big triggerfish on a flea.”

LBI Surf Fishing Report

The Long Beach Island surf temperature continues to hang around in the low 70’s. For the most part it’s the same surf story…

Anglers fishing live bloodworms and Fish Bites are catching kingfish on the beaches of LBI. From time to time, there’s also small bluefish present on some beaches. Using mullet or bunker will get these hungry and aggressive blues to bite.

If there’s visual bird and fish activity… throw jigs like a Hogy Epoxy Jig, Diamond Jig, Hopkins, Acme Kastmaster or Deadly Dick Lures. All of these are great fall fishing lures that cast great and resemble the various baits that are present right now.

74th Annual World Series of Surf Fishing

Today was the 74th Annual World Series of Surf Fishing hosted by the LBI Fishing Club. This one day ASAC event had a strong showing with 36 teams and a total of 206 anglers. All together there were 374 total scorable fish caught; 140 bluefish and 182 kingfish.

Sandra Lee took this sunrise photo of the surf anglers lined up for the World Series of Surf Fishing Tournament.
Sandra Lee took this sunrise photo of the surf anglers lined up for the World Series of Surf Fishing Tournament.

Current Surf Conditions & Outlook

Today’s conditions… South east swell continues on the beach of LBI today. Expect reinforcing swell tomorrow (Sunday) from TS Teresa which is developing near/above Bermuda. Everyone should also keep an eye out for Hurricane Sam which is a small but powerful story that is tacking in our direction. So it should send us swell later this month and then additional, more powerful swell the first week of October.

Barnegat Bay Fishing Report

In the bay there’s a lot of life! From game fish to bait, the variety of species is amazing. It’s crazy to think we’ve seen sardines, cigar minnows and goggle eyes mixed in with the peanut bunker.

The two most abundant game species are blowfish and weakfish but blues make their presence known. Blowfish continue to be caught in good number by anglers anchoring, chumming and fishing small baited (clam, squid, worm) hooks.

So far this year the weakfish are plentiful, possibly the best we’ve seen in quite some time. A lot of weaks in the 12-20″ range with a few quality ones up to 26″. These are mainly being caught on small jigs and soft plastics, with a few being caught on peanut bunker and mullet. Also shrimping for weakfish has been great!

A healthy showing of resident striped bass in the smaller size ranges (20-26″) continue to offer light tackle fun. There are a few keeper size in the mix. Slowly (but surly) bigger striped bass are showing.

Dan caught this 40" striped bass in 4' of water on a Smack-It popper!
Here’s Team Fish Head’s Dan D with a classy bass he caught this afternoon fishing the flats. He caught this 40″ striped bass in 4′ of water on a Smack-It popper! It’s safe to say we have new arrivals here now!

Big Game Fishing

The big game fishing has been phenomenal all summer and it has transitioned right into fall. The past couple of weeks have been crazy with monster bluefin tuna in the Bight very close to the shores of northern Jersey and Western Long Island. Anglers are also still picking away at yellowfin a couple big eyes, a few wahoo and really good catches of mahi.

Here's a big bluefin tuna caught in late September in the BIght by TJ.
That’s a real one! TJ has geared up at Fish Heads for many many years. When he called us early in the week and said he needed another big gun outfit we had a new Shimano Tiagra 80 wide spooled and and ready to go! Happy to see our customers getting out and accomplishing serious life goals!

LBI Fishing Report 9/16/21

Things are happening faster than you might notice! Before we dive into that let’s cover the current weather. Low pressure off of the Carolinas is creeping up and giving us a few days of north-east flowing fall like weather. Moderate north east winds with 3-4′ south east swell will be on the beaches of Long Beach Island Friday and Saturday. At this point it looks like the winds will drop out Saturday afternoon but will be cranking up again Sunday morning 10-15-20mph in a northerly flow. High pressure parks in the Gulf of Maine Monday – Tuesday – Wednesday which will keep the onshore flow going.

Local LBI Water Temperatures

Today’s Ship Bottom surf temperature was 67º. About 7 miles off of the beach at the Garden State North Reef site the ocean water temperature was 72º. Since today was a cloudy overcast day it was a good one for true water temperature readings since most days the surface temperature is effected by solar heating.

Looking at the Barnegat Bay buoy changes are evident. The downward trend started at the beginning of September and will continue.

Barnegat Light water temperature chart.
The large swings in temperature plotted on this chart is due to the buoy’s location very close to Barnegat Inlet. It records bay water on the outgoing tide and ocean water on the incoming tide. Take note of the sharp drop in water temperatures on and around August 20th. That is the recorded upwelling event due to Hurricane Henri.

It’s happening faster than you might notice!

To gauge where we are at… Saturday is the last day with sunset in the 7 o’clock hour. Days are getting shorter. That gets the bait moving and migration into gear. Full moon coming on Monday 20th! Around the moons, the tides are more extreme. That gets baits moving and migration into gear. Summer ends on Wednesday Sept 22nd. Fall is almost here!

Long Beach Island Fishing Report

Late summer fishing on Long Beach Island is a special time where it’s warm, there’s a variety of species and there’s a lot less traffic.

Fluke Fishing The 9th Inning

There’s only a few days left to get the last of this year’s fluke fishing in. Unfortunately the closing weekend isn’t shaping up to be a very friendly one to ocean bottom fishing. Savvy anglers will find opportunities in protected areas and also land based spots.

Fishing On The Surf

The best best right now off the LBI surf is kingfish. For many weeks anglers using Fish Bites have had success. This afternoon Dave Russo from Blanchard, PA stopped in the shop to gear up with some things and deliver a batch of custom flies. He shared this report, “This morning I was into kingfish on the surf up the street from the shop. I caught about ten of them on chartreuse Fish Bites. Remember what Lefty said. If it ain’t chartreuse, It ain’t no use!”

Theo Door posted this photo of his son with a recent kingfish catch.
Theo Door posted this photo of his son with a recent kingfish catch. “Me and my son caught ’em up today on Fish Bites.”

TIP: We’ve found that Fish Bites are very effect however loose their edges in cool/cold water. As the ocean temperatures cool, live bloodworms will slide past and emerge the winner.

Other species present on the LBI surf and ripe to harvest… fluke (while open), blues/snappers, spike weakfish and a couple croakers. With the mullet run picking up steam using them is a great option. Fish whole, chunks or strips for blues, fluke and striped bass.

Fishing In The Bay

The most abundant species in the local backwater is blowfish. Throughout the bay many different areas offer good fishing for them. Also present, weakfish, snapper, fluke and striped bass are on the menu.

The local docks and lagoons are stacked up with baits. We have the classics… peanut bunker, spearing, bay anchovies, and mullet as well as some southern neighbors hanging around for a late season visit spanish sardine, scaled sardine, threadfin herring, butterfish, cigar minnow and scad. RARELY do we see this variety of baits.

Fishing At The Inlet

The Barnegat Inlet State Park, adjacent beaches and bayside bulkheads are all productive fishing areas with easy public access. Right now there’s great opportunities to catch small bluefish with lures. Work the right windows and you might lock into a striped bass or two. Tog, sheepshead and triggerfish are present and are three great targets for all of September. Many other species traverse the Inlet on a daily basis too.

Light tackle bluefish action is fun aboard Fish Head Charters.
Most of the bluefish are running small this year, smaller snappers up to three pound range. But a few larger ones could show at anytime. Case and point, here is a sizable 34″ long, 16.5″ girth bluefish from a recent trip.

Fishing Report Update 9/13/21

Today the flies were horrible! One reporter said, “Think of your worst fly day ever. Then double it. That was today!” It’s fly season and each day can vary. Westerly winds puts flies on the beaches of LBI. When fishing the beach, bay or boat always be prepared with a quality bug spray. Our number one pick and also the one chosen by many of the lifeguard squads of LBI… Captain Ron’s Bug Repellant!

Here’s a fishing report update video from Sunday evening September 12, 2021

It’s The Last Week Of Fluke!

There is only one week left, with the NJ Summer Flounder fishing season closing on Sunday September 19th. Fishing before Hurricane Larry’s swell Friday/Saturday fishing was good. It seems most of the hot ocean reports simmered down due to the swell. We are expecting good fishing this week. There’s only one way to find out. Let’s go fishing and get in on the last hurrah!

Bayside Fishing

Glen Seidel reported, “Today was a perfect day with a calm bay. I caught 35 blowfish in less than an hour. Left them biting.”

Blowfish action continues with good fishing in the bay.  Boat anglers have had a great run for the better part of summer. Land based anglers are also catching too! Long Beach Island has numerous bayside access (on the north end, mid island and south end) where anglers can get into fun fishing. For more information stop by the shop.

Weakfish are a great species to target right now for light tackle fun. Here's Mike Manaco with one he caught in the bay off Beach Haven.
Weakfish are a great species to target right now for light tackle fun. Here’s Mike Manaco with one he caught in the bay off Beach Haven.

Fluke fishing the bay still offers good opportunities. Numerous reports of quality fluke fishing “inside” recently tells that it will be good right to the close.

Chris Siegert reported, "Great late season fluke fishing with by boy Captain Mike this weekend. We fished his classic 1975 Seacraft and limited out with nice fishing up to 27"." Yes they were fishing in the bay!
Chris Siegert reported, “Great late season fluke fishing with by boy Captain Mike this weekend. We fished his classic 1975 Seacraft and limited out with nice fishing up to 27″.” Yes they were fishing in the bay!

As mentioned in previous reports, when the wind is cranking or the swell is pumping clamming or crabbing in the protection of the bayside areas is a great way to make the most of what we are dealt.  

LBI Surf Fishing

Kingfish action continues with good fishing on the LBI surf. So far it has been a consistent bite for weeks not. Some days Fish Bites are doing the trick however other days live bloodworms out fish. It can’t hurt to bring both baits!

Fluke are being caught on the surf as well as spot, sharks, rays and a few striped bass and blues.

James Walsh caught this striped bass over the weekend. Every day we get close and close to prime time fall striped bass fishing here on LBI. BUT don’t let that keep you from enjoying awesome light tackle bass fishing right now!!!

The mullet run is kicking in and will hopefully be rocking here soon!

LBI Albies

We are getting lots of calls, messages, questions… where are the albies? IN late August we had a couple good showings. I was catching near Barnegat Inlet. There were three to four days of great fishing then Ida came in and dumped a lot of rain on NJ. Since then I’ve only heard of a few caught near shore. More 7-15+ miles off. Their showing was very early so I remain positive. Usually we see them in late September and October. Let’s hope they invade nearshore again!

LBI Causeway Bridge Closure

Frezza apologized for the Sunday’s bridge closure. He was out late fishing under the Bridges on Saturday night. He left his plug bag by accident and called the Ship Bottom police to report it and possible check in hopes of a lost and found. When the asked for its contents they heard Bomber lures and that set off the alarm. All joking aside it was a wild turn of events. I can only recall a few times the Causeway was closed. This one for sure caused the most havoc.

RIP Gregory “Rashnose” Eastburn

We are saddened to have learned that on 9/11 Gregory Eastburn lost his 7 year battle with cancer. Greg has been a staple to fishing in Barnegat Light for the past 30 years working first on the Capt Bill, Miss LBI and the SuperChic for the past 17 years.

Chris Eastburn sent this in…

In 1990, I took you under my wing teaching you the ropes fishing as the second mate on the Capt Bill.  You later excelled as the top mate in Barnegat Light and became the first mate on the Miss LBI and on the SuperChic.  I have so many memories of our fishing adventures.  Dude, you put a hurting on the fish!

You were one of the nicest guys on Earth.  Such a loving and caring person, husband and dad.  My heart aches for Amy, Wes and Grady.  I’m so proud to say you’re my nephew. RIP Gregory

Labor Day Fishing Report

I can’t believe Labor Day is official here. Summer flew by. Looking back it was one hell of a summer full of great fishing and for the most part very good weather. From near shore to offshore and from shore fishing was consistently good all summer for a variety of species.

With 15 days left in the official summer season (Sept 22) and 13 days left in NJ’s summer flounder fishing season (Sept 19), anglers should be looking forward to great late summer fishing with less traffic on the road, the beach and the water. Strike now while the iron is hot!

September offers the season’s best variety with all of the traditional coastal gamefish like fluke, striped bass, bluefish, kingfish, blowfish, weakfish, sea bass, tog, drum, sheepshead, triggerfish, porgy as well as albies, cobia and Spanish mackerel. In recent days the mid-shore tuna bite has simmered down but mahi madness filled the void as well as some big wahoo.

Erin from Hawaii caught this ribbon fish aka cutlassfish fluke fishing about five miles outside BI this weekend. It just goes to show that fishing the waters of LBI in September you never know what you might catch!

LBI Surf Fishing Report

Today’s LBI surf temperature from Harvey Cedars Beach Patrol is 72º.

September is a great time of year to enjoy fishing the beaches of LBI. Right now there’s fluke fluke, kingfish, spot, small bluefish and weakfish on the beaches. For the kings and spot rig up with a Classic Small Hook Kingfish Rig and bait with live bloodworms and/or FishBites Bag Of Worms.

Kevin Schuler sent in this photo Sunday morning. He reported, “The fishing was nice before the wind picked up. I caught two keepers quick and about 6 short.”

For fluke it’s hard to beat a bucktail jig tipped with Gulp with a teaser hook above with a Gulp. We’ve got teaser rigs in stock. Need help making up your own custom teaser rig?

As reported previously some mullet are moving and creeping out of their summer hiding areas. I saw a school of mullet in the surf last weekend. Yesterday we heard of a few netting off of the local surf. The mullet will be running any day. Now is the time to fish mullet on a classic mullet rig.

Steve George from Night Strike Guide Service caught this weakfish off of the LBI surf fishing Gulp this weekend.

Barnegat Bay Fishing Report

The Barnegat Bay has a lot on tap right now. Blowfish are the far the best target species for quantity and table fare. Please harvest responsibly. Weakfish, small blues as well as resident striped bass are present AND there’s still a good number of fluke in the bay too.

Fish Head’s alumni Dan D was on the water this weekend with his girlfriend Liz and together they caught 11 striped bass on top water lures. Dan reported, “The Stillwater Smack It Poppers were raising and hooking them.”

Crabbing and clamming are two great ways to enjoy time on the water. They are both especially great times to take advantage of a windy day or when the ocean is rough.

A Tidbit On Weather

This weekend’s break from the heat was welcomed and very comfortable. Low dew point, low humidity and at times chilly but GREAT!!! Fall is in the air.

If you didn’t get word yet… as of today’s 11am update Hurricane Larry is a major storm moving north west at 10mph with cranking 120mph winds.

Right now all models show that Larry will stay away from the Eastern seaboard and only send long period swell our way. How much and how big will depend on its track and how it’s affected by the frontal system moving through our area on Wednesday night.

The first signs of Larry will show up on LBI’s beaches on Tuesday with forerunners arriving. Wednesday we’ll see more long period south east swell in the 2-4′ possibly five foot range but lully, smaller in the AM, larger in the PM. Thursday the beaches will be pumping 4-6’+ and favorable north west winds will have LBI’s beaches lit up with HOPEFULLY world class surf! The swell should peak later Thursday or Friday. Friday could be another great day too. Saturday Larry’s swell drops fast as the system exits our swell wind.

Why does this matter to the anglers of LBI?

Well… For sure surf anglers should expect the beaches to be packed with surfers on Thursday. Also the swell and long shore drift will force anglers to fish heavier weighs if trying to hold bottom. Boat anglers should know that Thursday powerful long period swell energy. It should be a nice day to fish however shoals and inlets could be hazardous at time.

LBI Surf Fishing Classic

Registration for the 2021 67th Annual Surf Fishing Classic is on! It kicked off today. We are looking forwards to a great event starting October 9th. SAVE THE DATE! Over the years the early part of the event was slow unless medium size blues (minimum size is 28″) showed up. Last year kingfish were added and it turned out to be a very successful and welcomed addition. They are here to stay! We look forward to the first 1-3 weeks full of kingfish action as things transition right into the bass and blues.

Rock The Dock!

The NJ Fishing Club’s Rock The Dock fluke tournament went down on Saturday September 4th with flawless weather and phenomenal fluke fishing. It was arguably the best day of fluke fishing all summer! The majority of the 24 boats fished the ocean waters; open bottom, wrecks and reef sites. The largest fish was in the six pound range and the top three fish stringer was in the fifteen pound range. We’ll have the specifics posted as soon as they are available.

I had a blast fishing the tournament with Captain Jeff Warford and fellow team Fish Heads member Mike Frezza. Jeff put us on the fish right from the start and the fishing was great all morning. The tide was cranking but the Rhodan Trolling Motor helped keep up in position where the fluke were chewing. We finished the day with 26 keeper size fish. We were releasing healthy keeper after keeper, hunting for larger fish but they never came. Out of our 9 fish limit kept the largest was 4.88#.

We caught a lot of fish! It was one of the best fluke fishing trips I can recall in years. For us it was all Magictail Jig and Gulp. I tried XL minnows and live spot but it didn’t do the trick for us.

Keep an eye out for the NJ Fishing Club’s Blackfish Tournament later this fall!

LBI Fishing Report 9/1/21

So it’s September… Now What!

With school’s firing back up, the recent mass exodus has left Long Beach Island with what feels like the most breathing room in a very, very long time. The ambiance is something that so many of us have missed and feared gone after the pandemic push but the days after Henri gave us reassurance. Fortunately summer is far from over folks! What many call “Local Summer” we call the best time of year to enjoy LBI and all of its bounty.

Here’s the Long Beach Island Fishing Report for September 1, 2021.

Many look at the September and October time frame as dead months with little to nothing going on; however that couldn’t be further from the truth. Late summer fishing on LBI is great! Aside from tropical systems, the weather tends to be good and the waters are warm. We see a great variety of species with not one star, but good supporting rolls from solid players.

Fluke / Summer Flounder Fishing Report

The NJ summer flounder fishing season closes on September 19th so get in on the final stretch now. Year in and year out late season fluke fishing the waters of LBI is arguably the best part of the season. Right now there’s productive fluke fishing in the inlet, surf, ocean (reefs, wrecks and open bottom) and even still in the bay. More on the bay listed below, Barnegat Bay Fishing Report.

Teddy Kamish knows the deal! Here's his land based fluke limit caught before the Ida blow. "Always chewing before the blow. I caught these three from the sands of LBI... 19", 20" and the biggest was just shy of 23"!"
Teddy Kamish knows the deal! Here’s his land based fluke limit caught before the Ida blow. “Always chewing before the blow. I caught these three from the sands of LBI… 19″, 20″ and the biggest was just shy of 23″!”

Captain Jeff Warford has been on the meat each and every trip. He’s transitioning well from a big game tuna and sword killer to a flounder pounder. He reported, “Another day, anther limit of quality fish. I think I’m spending $600 a week on Gulp. I’ve got into a number of great days fluke fishing in the past ten days. A few days back I was fishing with Frezza from Fish Heads and we really go into ’em good. It was the best day of NJ fluke fishing I ever had. We kept out limit to 8 pounds and released another 20+ keepers.

Here's Frezza (left) and Jeff (right) both with their hands full after a great day fluke fishing the waters off of Long Beach Island. Jeff reported that his best fishing has been working structure with Magictail Jigs and big Gulp baits. No secrets here... that's been the MO for years!
Here’s Frezza (left) and Jeff (right) both with their hands full after a great day fluke fishing the waters off of Long Beach Island. Jeff reported that his best fishing has been working structure with Magictail Jigs and big Gulp baits. No secrets here… that’s been the MO for years!

Barnegat Bay Fishing Report

Finally the boat traffic on the bay has let up a little bit and more gentlemen conditions prevail. Fishing the bay is and has been great for blowfish. What started a little on the late side and slow side rally kicked into high gear the past 4-5 weeks. All reports are strong from the west side of the bay with anglers chumming and using squid and clam as hook baits. Don’t overlook Fish Bites as a great hook bait choice! There’s also many other areas where blowfish are showing up. Weakfish popped up big time in early to mid August however I’ve witnessed a slowdown. Maybe it’s because I’ve started to turn my attention elsewhere (ALBIES!). The bay is still stacked with fluke and good size ones too. Brian Davis caught a 26′ 6.2 pounder inside a few days ago.

False Albacore Fishing

Everyone loves light tackle fishing right? In my book the ultimate light tackle species (by far) is false albacore. Why? Because they are eat small baits and are fast, finicky and frustrating. The pursuit, the catch and the release are much more rewarding that many other species inshore species. The topwater crushing feeds are just icing on the cake! If looking to hunt down albies make sure your tackle is in order and be ready for a hind and go seek missions. Some days they pop up quick and then disappear like ghosts.

Here's Ryan P. and his 7 year old daughter aboard Fish Head Charters. This was one of a handful of albies this morning.
Here’s Ryan P. and his 7 year old daughter aboard Fish Head Charters. This was one of a handful of albies this morning.

I’ve found over the years that my success has been attributed to my patience, preparation and attention to detail. Leave anyone of these three behind and albies will leave you in the dust frustrated and pissed off. Rigging up with a 15-20# braid on a quality smooth 3000 size spinning reel with a light, crisp and powerful rod rated in the 1/2 to 1oz range makes the perfect tool for the job. A slim line to line knot attaches 18-24″ section of 20-25# fluorocarbon and then I tie direct to my lure of choice always matching the hatch! You cant go wrong with the Hogy Epoxy Jigs. Don’t be afraid to fish them fast.

Mid-Shore Big Game Fishing

As per my last report post update under the Big Game Fishing Section, “bluefin very close, mid-shore action has been hot all summer, troll at speeds for WAHOO!” Same story now. Actually more reports of mahi and WAHOOO!!! Influx of albies in some areas which are fun on light tackle but a huge nuisance when trolling.

Here's Zach Dunne with a beautiful 72# wahoo caught aboard the Pressure Drop. He reported the fish took down a purple spreader bar and almost spooled the reel.
Here’s Zach Dunne with a beautiful 72# wahoo caught aboard the Pressure Drop. He reported the fish took down a purple spreader bar and almost spooled the reel.

Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Report

The LBI surf temp is 74º today (official temp from Harvey Cedars Beach Patrol). Recent fluke action on the beach has been good for some. Case and point is Teddy’s catch report above. Kingfish are plentiful on the surfside too. We’ve heard about a few croakers and spot showing too.Some areas and times offer a few cocktail blues, and possibly a spanish mackerel or false albacore. With the warm water, the sharks are still present; brown sharks, sand tigers, blacktip, spinners and others. Check out this video captured by Karl Marquardt of blacktip and spinner sharks feeding heavy right off the beach on the south end of LBI.

Holgate Is Open!

On September 1st the gates open. We got word from a couple 4×4’s that the beach conditions were good. BUT the swell and high tides could chew the access ramp. We’ll have to see what things look like tomorrow after this blow. As always be prepared when driving on the beach. A lot of unexpected events can take place. Note: Other town beaches will be opening soon to 4×4 buggies.

Long Beach Island Fishing Tournaments Coming Up

Rock The Dock!

This weekend, Saturday September 4th the NJ Fishing Club is holding Rock The Dock Fluke Tournament! 6:30am Shotgun Start, Weigh ins from 2:30 to 3:30pm at Van’s Boats on the water in Barnegat Light.

Entry Fee for Private Boat is $125 or up to 6 anglers.

For all of those fluke anglers that are looking to fish and don’t have a spot… Jump aboard the Mary M IV! Entry Fee for individual anglers fishing aboard the Mary M is $165 (includes, fare, gratuity, pool & tournament entry). Departure 6am Return 2pm

For more details on the tournament, prize payout structure and calcuttas click here. ALL ENTRANTS MUST REGISTER ONLINE! Registration Closes Friday 9/3 at 6pm.

67th Annual LBI Surf Fishing Classic

Sign Ups Will Begin Soon! – The event kicks off October 9th and runs until December 12, 2021. Just like last year there are three primary species; striped bass, bluefish and kingfish. And a ton of prizes! For more information go to www.LBISFC.com

LBI Fishing Report 8/24/21

And we are back and better than ever! By all accounts fishing is very strong after the past weekend’s heavy rain flooded and washed out the area. Henri came up and didn’t lash us with winds but dumped buckets of rain and put some strong groundswell on the beaches. What does this have to do with fishing? Well… water temperature, water clarity and water salinity are all very important variables in the equation we call fishing! Fortunately things bounced back fast and great fishing has settled back in. Here’s the Long Beach Island Fishing Report Update for Wednesday August 25, 2021.

Baits! Baits! And More Baits!

The abundance of bait fish in the local Long Beach Island waters is really really great to see. Spearing, bay anchovies, peanut bunker, mullet, mini bluefish, juvie weakfish and even some odd ball, warm water baits up from their southern territory. Sardines aka pilchards aka whitebait… Not the usually small baits us Yankees call whitebait. Goggle eyes, Scad aka Cigar minnows, thread-fin herring aka green back aka greenies! All of these were caught and reported by anglers making bait with cast nets right here on LBI.

We don’t see these baits everyday.

Yes mullet! I mentioned in one of my recent reports I saw a small school of mullet. I couldn’t miss the v-wave. Took a double take and for sure saw it. Then thinking I was crazy shared with others… ya who see’s mullet racing the white waters in August? I never have until this past weekend. I’m happy to say it was then confirmed by angler/friend who saw them too. A commenter the the YouTube post too “saw a school of mullet out of BI.” While mullet in the bay is standard issue for this point in the season the ocean IMO is wayyy too early but I’m not complaining.

LBI Surf & Jetty Fishing

Fluke fishing must own the limelight with 25 days left in the season! Summer flounder fishing is productive for beach and boat anglers and will be right into the end of the season on Sept 19th. The Long Beach Island surf and jetties are great areas to fish, especially for flounder in the later summer.

The Barnegat Inlet Jetty is a great area to fish for a variety of species right now. From fluke, blues, striped bass, and blowfish to tog, sea bass, sheepshead and triggerfish there’s something for everyone.

Davey Jones reported, “Hands down, today was one of the most enjoyable days I’ve had fishing this year. The tog bite was great with blowfish and sea bass mixed in. I had three dozen crabs and it was a fish or every piece of bait!”

Kingfish activity has been good on the surf. I’ve found they don’t like swell but sometimes when thick they will feed right through it. Case and point was this past weekend. Anglers fishing live bloods reported catching kingfish while the Fishbites were getting slower action. Now that the swell is gone and surf temperatures have stabilized at 70 degrees (official surf – ocean water temp by the Harvey Cedars Beach Patrol 8/25) the artificial bite should get back going again.

Weakfish are somewhat of a common catch the past couple of weeks for anglers fishing the north end surf as well as the inlet and bayside areas. Nick Brewer reported catching one as well as a fluke on his new Tsunami Trophy II 8’6″ combo.

Near Shore Fishing Report

This section titled “Near Shore Fishing Report” could help both beach or boat anglers and should really catch the attention of light tackle enthusiasts. There was already mention of bait abundance but not much said about what’s cashing them. Well!!! Today was kind of the first solid day our local near shore area has been a good false albacore bite. This morning a handful of albie reports came in. One came in from Jim Potter, “Little solo mission.” Another came in from a local angler Dan who caught over a dozen, “It was good fishing early fishing all by myself.” Another angler Luke caught one too. There’s also Spanish mackerel feeding and a million, maybe a billion or trillion 1-2# blues feeding too.

Here’s Jim Potter with a albie from this morning’s solo session!

Barnegat Bay Fishing Report

Barnegat Bay blowfishing is really good. Honestly it doesn’t get much better than what we’ve had going for the past couple of weeks. Consistent drop and reel fishing in many different areas; open heart of the Barnegat Bay to the west side as well as the holes littered around the bay and reports have been strong from spots near the inlets too. There’s a very dominate showing of blowfish from very small to good table size. There’s no state regulation/limit… Please fish responsibly.

Fluke fishing is very good out front on the wrecks and reef site but there’s still great flounder fishing in the bay too. On Tuesday Sam Weisenski reported, “We stayed inside and caught 46 fluke this morning with five keepers. A lot of blowfish too. Done by 10/11am because it’s just too hot!”

Here’s a photo of Paul Lindsey with three keepers. He was out fishing with his buddy Allen Walski in the bay today.

Big Game Fishing

The reported of bluefin very close to the beach continue. Some reported and catching footballs and others 70″+ round ones. The reports from the edge have been lack luster the past day or two. Few epic reports as of late but maybe that will change soon. BUT! Look on the bight side… the reports from the mid-shore grounds are solid. Today we heard of some boats getting a couple and top boats into double digit fish. This action has been hot all summer and it keeps on keeping on!

Today we heard of anglers picking a couple fish on the troll which also drummed up albies and for those pulling at speed… WAHOO! Those that put the work in and jigged hard pulled on some and also the chunkers raised some nice ones. We also heard of mahi on the pots with one customer catching 12, mostly smaller ones but two nice fish were in the bunch.

LBI Fishing Report 8/20/21

Great summertime fishing rolls on with anglers catching a variety of species from the beach and boat. Hopefully you are getting in on the summer fun! Be on the lookout for powerful long periods of swell this weekend from Henri. Here’s the fishing report update for Thursday August 20th, 2021.

Barnegat Bay Fishing

Blowfish, Weakfish, Fluke, Blues and even cobia! The waters of Barnegat Bay have so much to offer right now in mid-August. Hopefully you are getting in on the summer fun. Fluke fishing is still strong but finding keepers is hard. Blowfish invaded a couple weeks ago and their presence is well know. If targeting them they are quick easy catches. If not targeting them you know they are present by their distinctive small curved bites. The weakfish are here in good numbers to in the 12-16″ range with some larger fish being caught.

Long Beach Island Surf & Jetty Fishing

The surf and jetty of LBI has offered good fishing all summer. By far the best fishing off of the surf is kingfish. Fluke fishing is also and it would be proper to expect surf side fluke to be strong right to the end of the season.

Barnegat Inlet offers great variety with fluke, blues, blackfish, weakfish, sheepshead, triggerfish. Be on the lookout for powerful long periods of swell this weekend from Henri. Venturing out on the rocks could be and will be hazardous.

NJ Offshore Reports

The great tuna fishing rolls on and seems to only get better. With Henri coming, be on the lookout for powerful long periods of swell. I was out fishing the 40miles range lumps on Wednesday and got into a great yellowfin bite. It started out with store staffer Max getting a top water hook up on his second cast of the morning. He then switched to the jig and got his second hook up on his third drop. Saying he started the day with a hot hand is an understatement. From there the rest of the crew started hooking up too. We finished the day with an awesome 1-2 hour top water foaming session. For me it was my best trip of the season. When time allows I’ll post some photos and videos from the day.

LBI Fishing Report 8/15/21

The past week was a scorcher with hot and humid days BUT the fishing on and around LBI was even hotter! The variety of species in the local waters are at the widest offering beach and boat anglers amazing fishing opportunities. Here’s the Long Beach Island Fishing Report Update for Sunday August 15, 2021.

The smorgasbord is served!!!… Fluke, bluefish, sea bass, tog, striped bass, blowfish, weakfish, triggerfish, sheepshead, blackdrum, sharks, mahi, tunas, marlin, swordfish, tilefish… the list goes on!

Sloane Endick caught this black drum today. She was looking for sheepshead and hook into this monster. She reported, “It put up a hell of a fight and took some crazy runs!”

Midshore Tuna Fishing

The midshore tuna bite so far this summer (well over a month) has been great. There’s a great showing of yellowfin in the 60-80+++ class at the 40 mile range (out of Barnegat Inlet) chewing chunks, jigs and lures on top. Closer in bluefin are holding steady at the “inshore” lumps and ridges. This action is great for boats of all sizes to tangle with big game fun.

Here’s Captain Brian Williams with one of many hoss yellowfin this summer. On this recent trip aboard Shore Catch Charters new 41′ Valhalla they went 8-12 on the jig.

Mullet Outdoors Adventures shared, “I had bluefin 7 mile out off Brigantine. Had 1 around 30in and 4 under 27″. Also caught tons of false albacore.”

52nd White Marlin Invitational

Did you know, the oldest white marlin fishing tournament in the world is home to Long Beach Island’s Beach Haven Marlin Tuna Club? This year’s 52nd White Marline Invitational was a banger, better than ever! With 51 boats register there was a good angler turn our and with the addition of Marlin Fest it was a huge community event at Dock Road’s public dock area. Going into the final day Captain Tim Irons and the crew aboard the Smoking Again were in the lead with a 109# yellowfin. With the scales closing at 8:30pm on the last day of fishing the Crazy Tuna came in with a buzzer beater… at 8:20pm a 182# big eye tuna. It was a very exciting story line that made for a suspenseful finish. There were no qualifying marlin just some releases. For more specific details check out the tournament site. Congrats to all of the participants, sponsors, volunteers and most of all the BHMTC!

If you would like to check out the weigh in here’s a link.

LBI Fishing Report 8/6/21

By all accounts this summer’s fishing has been great.   From offshore to back bay and everywhere in between anglers are getting out, catching and having a hella good time doing it. If you haven’t found the time to get out and enjoy summertime fishing the waters of LBI here’s a reminder… Let’s go fishing!

My latest report video was posted on Tuesday August 3rd. As I mentioned, summer is flying!

Today Friday August 6th the sunrise was at 6am, a tell tale sign that the days are getting shorter by a little bit every day. While I don’t want to think about it yet, I’m already seeing signs of fall… Peanut bunker are stacked up at my dock (it wasn’t that way a few weeks ago). I saw a school of mullet for the first time this summer. This is also the time we need to start tuning into the NHC for tropical developments.

Recent updated and trends I can share…

The local area has seen a big uptick in weakfish and blowfish in the past 7-10 days. I reported a few days back that I was inundated with blowfish during a recent wreck fishing trip and I questioned were these fish leaving or moving in. I think it’s safe to say they have moved in big time. Also the weakfish too!

Collin and Shawn from Surf city were out fishing today with Captain Jeff Warford. They had a blast fishing. Capt Jeff said, “Blowfishing is really, really good right now!” Chumming with clam chum and fishing classic blowfish rigs baited with clam bites is the way to go.  Anchor up in Barnegat Bay and in join a summer day catching.

The inshore, midshore and offshore medium game and big game fishing has been stellar. Last year’s yellowfin run was one for the books. This year is very good too, but different in it’s own unique way. The exact spots are changing, more or less rotating every couple days with chunk, jig, cast, troll all producing on their given day.  There’s both bluefin and yellowfin in a variety of size classes brining exciting variety to each trip.

On the surf it’s the same solid story just another day… kingfish, fluke, occasional bluefish, rays and sharks. One customer asked, “What’s the best baits to use on the surf that catch the most fish.” My answer…

To catch the most fish quantity wise I would suggest targeting kingfish. For kings you’ll want to rig up with a small hooks baited with live boodworms, DynaBait and/or Fish Bites. If you see small birds (terns) working or roaming the area chances are there’s small bait present and there could be bluefish from snapper size up to 4/5-lbs present. Cast a small jig. I prefer a 7/8 to 1-1/4oz Hog Epoxy Jig but you’ll need a light rod to cast it. A Deadly Dick, AVA diamond jig, Acme Kastmaster or Hopkins are all proven lures in this scenario too.

By now one can assume everyone has heard about Jake Kline’s tarpon. If you have or if you haven’t here’s a great piece put together by Jim Hutchinson Jr at The Fisherman.