Here’s the Fishing Report Update for Monday January 14, 2019. This time of year reports get few and far between; however, some anglers are getting out and fishing. This is what they shared.
One report of information came in from a boater who took a ride on Saturday. “I took advantage of the flat calm conditions and burned some fuel. The water was cold and everywhere was void of life. Bay temp was in high 30’s and the ocean was in the mid to low 40’s.”
Bottom Fishing When Weather Allows
When the weather allows, anglers targeting blackfish are rewarded. Tog fishing continues to be good with the fish still in surprisingly (close) shallow water for the time of year. January fishing is the time to start looking deeper in search of a trophy size blackfish. Full boat limit light be hard to reach now but there’s still plenty of good tog fishing going down.
Some boats are heading offshore trips for porgies, cod and pollock. We recently had customers in to shop gearing up be have not heard any reports back. Unfortunately Black Sea Bass season is closed.
Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Report
On the surf there’s not much going on. The water’s cold and all of the fish have migrated out of our waters. There’s a possibility to find a roaming resident but it’s slim. On his way to the surf, one Ship Bottom based angler stoped into today and picked up a few small lures. He reported, “Last two trips out I got the skunk. One more strike and I’m out till Spring.”
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Yesterday Wednesday January 2, 2018 Magictail’s Dante Soriente stopped in with TOGZILLA. Here’s his report from the day…
Big Blackfish Love Magictail Tog Jigs
What a day! I’ve been on the hunt for a 15 pound tog on one of my jigs. I caught ten double digit blackfish this year (2018) but nothing over the 13 pound mark. I can’t believe it finally happened today!
Dante and Magictails set out to make The Best Tog Jigs that would outfish all competition based on superior design elements. It’s safe to claim they hit a home run!
More tog and the biggest tog in the past two years have been caught on Magictail Tog Jigs than any other tog jig on the market.
On 1/2/2019 I fished with Paul Haertel aboard his boat the Angler. We got into some really good fishing. It all started off when I caught a really good fish. On my Boga Grip 15 it pulled down and almost bottomed out. This fish which was about 14.5-15 pounds. It was photographed and released. Then a few minutes later another double digit fish hit the deck. This 12 pound tog was also released. An hour went by and Paul caught a 11.5 pound tog on the jig.
About two hours later I hooked a big fish on a baited Magictail Tog Jig, 2oz Glow White Legger. This fish actually pulled drag and took me deep twice. What An Epic Battle! Shocking all of us it bottomed out my Boga Grip 15. Fortunately Paul had a Boga Grip 60 onboard. It weighed in between 20-21 pounds. I was going to release it but Paul wouldn’t let me. He said, “It’s a true giant!”
Once back on land I stopped in at Fishermans Headquarters and got a certified weight, 20.96 pounds. Just a few pounds shy of the state record. I’m so happy to have smashed the 15 pound mark. I’m in shock that I broke the 20 pound mark. Best of all I did it on my Magictail Jig… Mission Complete!
Here’s a testimonial from ace anglers Paul Haertel, “I’m sold on using Magictail Jigs! Up until a week or so ago I was more of a rig fisherman. Today I caught my limit plus, all on jigs. With a new boat record and all of these double digit catches they proved their value to me.”
Light Tackle Fishing Florida’s South Central West Coast
For the holidays (late 2018), I enjoyed some family time down in the Sunshine State visiting family. Not knowing our exact plans I did not book a guide in advance. I managed to score a last minute light tackle trip with Captain Jim Klopfer of Adventure Charters out of Sarasota, conveniently only 15 minutes from in law’s house.
The day started off slow due to dense fog. Looking for game we worked some mangrove lined creeks with small Rapala X-Rap Swimming Plugs but we came up short. Live bait might have made the difference but we stayed away from the dark side. Captain Jim kept us moving and on the hunt with a hit and run mentality.
We continued to work the area and our patience paid off. I managed a hook up on the 7wt fly rod blind casting a sink tip line with an Olive/White clouser minnow. During my tug of war, Mike hooked up again on the X-Rap. Before we knew it the jacks were smashing on top again.
Boat Side Top Water Take
Above all other, the next couple of minutes are ingrained in my brain for awhile. I punched out a good cast but was a little bit short of the target. One strip and then I let it settle. Second guessing my placement I quickly stripped the line to clear and recast. Five feet from the boat a big jack half out of the water fright trained my clouser. One solid strip set and he took off, clearing my line and into backing. These challenging close encounters is why I’m hooked on saltwater fly fishings!
Here’s a short video from our day light tackle fishing Sarasota Bay with Captain Jim…
We finished the day working some flats (grass and oyster beds) with Berkley Gulp Shrimp on a lead head jig. Using a snap jigging technique similar to fluke fishing at home we caught a couple ladyfish.
In the end we had a great day with a ton of fun. The jacks (three on fly, five on spin) and ladyfish kept our line tight for the majority of the four hour trip.
Highlight Note: While pulling into the ramp at the end of the day a very rare jet engine powered boat was leaving the dock. It’s shown at the end of the video. Have you ever seen a boat like this before? Let us know in the comment section.
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Looking Forward To The Next 365 Days
We hope that we helped your 2018 fishing adventures. Here’s to new horizons with new species, tackle and techniques! Our goal is for everyone to catch more fish, bigger fish and have even more fun doing so. All year long, we are seven days a week to help assist.
Start To 2019
What an awesome start to 2019! The mild temps and sun today felt more like the first day of spring. I spent the day enjoying the waves surfing mid-island. The water was churned up but lots of water foul, gulls and gannet were roaming around. One angler was waling the beach plugging. No hook ups that I saw. My assumption is he didn’t connect, but as long as the brutal cold stays away, I expect bass in the suds.
Fishing Report Update
On Sunday store staffers Frezza and Kelley were out with Swagmattic (Matt) and the guys from South Jersey Saltwater Anglers Fishing Club. They all fished with Captain Sammy aboard the Mary M. out of Barnegat Light. They reported solid day with fish up to 8.5 pounds, 10 fish shy of a 16 man boat limit. Matt reported, “Kelley was on fire and had the right touch. He boated thirteen keepers and was high hook.”
Reminder: New Jersey does not have a saltwater fishing license, but it does have a mandatory Saltwater Angler Registry for all anglers age 16 and over. Now’s the time to renew for 2019. For those anglers still unaware be sure to follow the link, read and register. NJDEP Saltwater Registry Program
We hope everyone enjoyed their holidays with family and friends. With the year coming to a close we hope everyone had a great 2018. Here is the report update for December 30, 2018.
LBI Surf Fishing Report
Surf fishing continues with a couple solid reports from the Long Beach Island surf came in. We gave our shop “test/prototype” Tsunami Salt X Spinning reel to Dan for a day and he put to the test.
First it was a sand test. Dig a hole drop it in and burry it. Pack it down and then pull it out. No problems. Next it went in the wash. Surf fishing reels live in the wash with saltwater and sand. Again no problems. Then it was time to fish it. Although not big ones, Dan found fish. The reel performed flawless. While the long term durability/longevity of this reel will not be determined until after seasons on seasons and year upon years of use. Our preliminary thoughts are very good. Considering the design, quality and VALUE! It’s a great price point that fits the saltwater market.
Here’s a fishing report from Dan, “The bass fishing on the beach was great the last couple of days. Finally we’ve seen a couple things absent all fall; adult bunker on the beach and massive bird plays with gannets dive bombing all day long. Curious what this storm will do! Friends a little north of me had tons of peanuts at their feet. We snagged about 5 adults with pods scattered along beach. The largest fish we caught over the last two days was around the thirty inch mark.”
John Del Sordo reports, “What a fun post Xmas session. There’s still lots of life out front. With school striped bass.”
Other reports came in from the surf about birds working along the beach.
Tog Fishing Report
The awesome blackfish action continues and Magictail Tog Jigs remain the most valuable player. Take advantage of this great fishery that is firing on all cylinders. Get out there!
The Magictail boys Dante and Zach got out fishing with Paul Haertel aboard the Angler.
Zach Michot reported, “With four double digit fish it was a great trip. My largest was over 12 pounds, a new personal best!”
This Just Happened!
Here’s a report from Greg O’Connell, “This just happened! Prolly a once in a lifetime fish for my son Dylan. Self cast, 8′ rod with a 4000 reel, 1/2oz jig with a plastic… Citation Red Drum 52″ 27″ girth comes out to about 48 pounds by IFGA formula. When it hit and started dumping line we thought it was a brown shark. After fighting twenty minutes I got a glimpse and my heart skipped a beat. My other son Ryan and I let him think it was a shark right up until I tackled it!”
From the crew at Fish Heads… Merry Christmas! Hope all of our readers have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Just a heads up we are closed today but will be back open on normal hours Wednesday December 26th at 7am.
On the fishing front… Kelley and Matt got out on Christmas Eve morning with Captain Tony Pacitti. They got into good fishing putting together a quick boat limit with quality fish in the mix. This year’s striped bass action faded out much earlier than previous years; however, tog fishing is off the charts.With some of the best black fishing our local waters has produced in a number of years, this December is one to remember!
December 26th Update 3pm
Fresh LBI Surf Fishing Report just in from Todd Luyber live from the beach… “Fishing for an hour, I got two bass. The guy next to me is using a real tiny bucktail 3/8 oz. He caught over 20 bass today. His biggest was 31 inches.”
LBI Surf Fishing Report Update – December 21, 2018
Some of the Fish Head crew got out on the water aboard the Osprey yesterday. The guys reported it was a slow day compared to the past few weeks. But there was a pick of quality fish. Matt S (@swagmattic) said, “I struggled as did most of the boat. There was not a ton of life or bites.” Patience and perseverance paid off… Some five and six pound tog were caught.
Kelley got a nice fish about 7 pounds that was good enough to take the calcutta cash, photo above. A 10lb 1oz pool fish was caught by Torr Cohen of Beach Haven. This was his first trip aboard the Osprey and he made the jump from jetty jockey to party boat pool winner like a champ, photo below.
Another double digit tog was caught on a Magictail Tog Jig. Yesterday Greg Sonday fished aboard Paul Heartel’s The Angler. The crew was one fish short of a four man limit. The photo below is Greg with a good tog that ate a green Magictail Tog Jig. It weighed in at 10 pounds even.
Store staffer Nick DeGennaro is home from college for the holidays. He stopped in and gear up for tog and then got out on the water yesterday. He reported, “Went out on the First Lady out of Belmar. We had fun fishing with 22 fish between 8 guys. The jigs out fished rigs.” Photo below.
Surf Fishing Report
It’s been awhile but finally were heard some news off the beach. Remember all of those peanut bunker that were stacked up all summer long. Where did they go? From what we gathered, one day they just disappeared. Could they have all moved out one night? Possibly slid out deep in the water column and then offshore? If you know please fill us in.
We haven’t talked to one angler who saw peanuts flowing on the beach this fall until now. Well flowing would be an exaggeration but seeing peanuts and catching striped bass on them is good enough! Yesterday, I had the pleasure of speaking to Shell E. Caris about his time fishing the Tsunami Salt X Spinning Reel this fall. While chatting he shared the info about a few peanut bunker and a few striped bass. Maybe they will head down to our beaches. Maybe they will not. Time will tell.
Recent mild weather has allowed those with fishing on the brain to get out and enjoy.
The surf fishing reports are becoming few and far between. Today we got word from two anglers. One, Rick mentioned a dead beach. He tried but didn’t find anything. Two, Dan found some fishing this afternoon. He reported at 2:15PM, “Check my story, I’m smoking them on bucktails on the north end surf! There’s tons of whitewater and I’m getting them good.”
The tog fishing continues with solid fishing on the inshore grounds. Today the morning’s conditions were sloppy. Most boats cancelled. Reports from mid and early week were strong.
Dante at Magictail Lures was out and reported the tog bite is on fire! He said, “Now’s the time for that hog we are all looking for. Tog Jigs have become a staple of the fishery over the past couple of years. They’ve helped me land ten double digit tog in the past two fall seasons. If you are heading out stop by Fish Heads and gear up. You will be happy!”
Paul Haertel reported, “None off my friends could go today so I went solo. I had my best day black fishing of the fall. The two biggest were 7.2 and 9.67 pound.”
All anglers in the shop report catching on the surf. Small striped bass are tight to the beach offering light tackle fun. Here’s a number of reports from today and yesterday.
Dan D. was on the beach today for an sunset session. He reported, “Light tackle fun… It was on consistent with a number of guys. Everyone was catching. I had a bunch of shorts and one keeper size fish. Super Strike Needlefish, bucktails and AVA Metals were working great but you gotta have a teaser!
A customer in the shop this evening was fresh off the beach and had a good stick of striped bass. He stopped in to get his rod tip repaired. He reported, “No keepers but a bunch of shorts throwing little light stuff.”
These small bass are also feeding on bait but you have to scale down! One customer reported, “My long rod didn’t get touched but the small chunks in close to the beach were bit. I released three fish. One was 30″ and would have been a good one for the table. I should of harvested and taken advantage cause no fish were checked in that day for the tournament.”
Todd Luyber stopped in the shop and picked up some lures yesterday afternoon. He was on the surf and shared this report, “Another good session with Brendan tonight. Steady pick with each of us catching about 6-8. Needles with teaser and the old school Vision Sand Eel got it done.”
Striped Bass Boat Fishing Report
With both fewer fish and much less participation, the striped bass reports from boat anglers have slowed. In the past day we’ve hear about some skunked out trips but did hear some boats found some fish.
Chris O’neil caught one 30″ fish today trolling on a white mojo.
Captain Billy on the Reel Trouble reported, “Good end to a good season with a good crew. Threw back some shorts in 45′ of water. Then moved out to 60′ and picked at a few more fish fish. Managed a few keeper size fish just over 30″. Quit at noon.”
Fish Head Charters
As this fall season creeps to a close I can’t help take a look back on my phone’s fall run photo album. What a ride it’s been!!! While this day was not the best numbers wise, nor size wise… it was special. I had the honor to introduce Matt a young avid angler to his first striped bass. Thanks Mr. Lutz (Chris) for giving me the opportunity to take you guys fishing!