As predicted last report the end of this week the bass fishery should open up. And open up it did. Starting Thursday good number of slot fish to fish around 30” were found around the inlet and well into the bay. By the weekend this fishery even got better. I personally slipped out one morning and landed 10 bass from a short to 29”. Picture of a sunup shorty. Then Sunday morning the big girls moved within striking distance of Barnegat Inlet. Unfortunately, I was busy not fishing. The fish ranged from 20 lb to 40 lb + At first light the bass were spraying big bunker and catching was easy. Attached is a picture of 13-year-old Justin with a 41.5 lb cow caught on board my friend Capt Dan of the Becky D. Well this is what everyone has been waiting for so get out there!
One for the record book! Today’s fishing was the real deal. Definitely in the top ten best bass on bunker bites I’ve experiences on the New Jersey Coast. The cold snap really turned it on.
I got out on the water earlier this morning. Ran up the beach in the dark and found massive piles of bass blasting bunker out of the water. The first two hours were great with classy bass blasting top water lures. With only one or two boats in the area with what seemed like every boat in the world flying north like a flock of geese in summer. Fortunately they were just a bit too far off the beach to see the unfolding mayhem frothing on top. By about 8-9 the masses came in and everyone was in on it. By that time it turned into a snag and drop bite which was very consistent for a good length of time.
For me the Doc Top Water Spook was the MVP. Big hungry bass just can’t resist the Doc’s slow top water walk the dog action. In my opinion, nothing beats a top water explosion especially from a trophy striped bass.
By all accounts, fishing was great. I lost count with the biggest 42 pounds on the boga grip, three in the 30 class and numerous twenties and teens. Here’s to many more bunker breakfast sessions like this right into the Holiday Season.
Store staffer Dave was on the water with his buddy Chad. Dave reported, “We smoked the beast! Legendary snag and drop session today. We had a dozen fish up to 45 inches on the snag and drop. Epic-ness!!”
The Smith clan was into them today! “We got a late start but found them chewing on bunker, catching six on the snag and drop. Biggest was 46″ 31 pounds. Young gun Justin Smith got a 28 pound 41″ bass.”
Store staffer Max was in on the action today too. He reported, “We headed up the beach early and found good fishing. Good fish on the snag and drop in the morning. Then later in the day we switched over to the troll and caught some more. Tony Maja spoons were getting bites!”
While stoked out of my skull, part of me felt serious pain with the mass slaughter. I saw a lot of fish caught but I didn’t see many go back over. I don’t want to be the catch and release broken record so I will not preach. I would like to remind all to harvest responsibility. Don’t get caught up in the excitement. These classy migrating fish are the life blood of the striped bass fishery.
The surf produced some fish but nothing close to what the boats did. This past weekend was a big improvement and we look forward to better fishing soon as the migration fills into our local water. Check out www.LBIFT.com for live results from the LBI Surf Fishing Classic.
Charles Young from Warminster PA checked in a 10.66 pound tog today for the Fisherman’s Magazine Dream Boat Challenge. He reported good fishing out on the Garden State North with live green crabs.
The weather gets cold and the fishing heats up! Today and yesterday were full of great fishing on both the beach and boat. New arrivals pushing in have the table is set for an awesome weekend and beyond. Most are in the “young” teen size range but classy fish and trophies are present and more are moving in. Now’s the time to get out and FISH!
The local waters have come down from their early fall holdings and currently range in the 50’s. Areas of the bay range from 52 to 58 degrees and after tonight’s cold temps it will be lower. The LBI surf temperature is currently 58 degrees. These numbers are prime for striped bass!!!
The weather is looking great! Saturday is sunny with moderate northerly winds easing over the second half of the day. Sunday is just about flawless with light winds!
This week things significantly improved for the surfcasters working the beaches of Long Beach Island. The LBI Surf Fishing Classic had a lot of activity the past couple of days! Today and yesterday were the busiest tournament days of the year. So far today six fish were checked in. Yesterday had five fish entered. It’s great to see anglers putting in the time and getting the reward.
At the time of this report update… Top Three Striped Bass: John Matt 48#, Anthony Mormile 35.52#, John Baxter 29.76#. Top Three Bluefish: Rob Vallone 15.16#, Gary Grippaldi 14.12#, Chet Bojarski 13.16#. Senior Division Striped Bass: John Baxter 29.76#, Merle Van Liere 22.74#, Steve Warren 18.96#. Senior Division Bluefish: Chet Bojarski 13.16#, Bill Montrey 12.98#, Dan Procida 9.74#. Youth Division: Striped Bass is held by Logan Johnson hold the striped bass and Quinn Rutan has the bluefish. Cathy Thiel holds the lead for the largest striped bass in the Women’s Division.
Tonight Anthony Mormile of Egg Harbouir Township NJ weighed in a 35.52 pound 46.6″ striped bass. He caught it off the North Beach surf on bunker at about 4:30 pm. This catch by Anthony is currently the second largest in the LBI Surf Fishing Classic.
Early this morning Jim Larson of West Berlin weighed in a 23.54 pound 41″ bass. He caught it at about 10pm last night fishing a Daiwa SP Minnow lures on the Barnegat Light Inlet jetty.
Joe and Cathy Theil stopped by yesterday afternoon to check in a nice striped bass from the surf. They were fishing the mid island surf in the town of Surf City. Cathy caught a 15.9 lb 38″ bass on a bunker chunk at about 1:45pm. This catch puts Cathy in the lead of the woman’s division in the LBI Surf Fishing Classic.
Here’s a surf report from Steve George, “Well that was a rush today! Started slow but man did it deliver in the end. Blowing and cold, but once I found them and figured out how they were feeding, I warmed up quick with steady striped bass action. Numbers not size but I’ll take it with over two dozen fish up to 25″. It’s a start and better days are coming. Have a great weekend!”
Anglers hunting bass are having great results. Some boats are trolling while others are fishing live baits. Both are working. Those that prefer to fool game fish with lures are also doing a number on the fish too.
I’ve been fortunate enough to fish before and after work the past couple of days. The sessions were great. Picking off bass on bucktails is always lots of fun. Last night we got into a good late night bite. The photo below is one of many striped bass caught. (Check out the moon rise. Really wish I had my good camera on board.)
Some of the boats working the near shore grounds are catching really nice fish. Yesterday Trevor Jones weighed in a 46″35.8 pound bass that he caught trolling off of Island Beach State Park. The fish went for a chartreuse bunker spoon.
Here a stomach contains photo that I found interesting. One fat teen size had this pile of food packed in its belly.
In the boat anglers are catching in the bay, inlet and ocean. Yesterday and today trolling pulled quality fish. Fishing live bait as well as lures will also effectively hook bass too.
The backwaters are still cock full of bass. Most are schoolleis but there are nice fish in the mix. Fish the docks, bridges, sod bank marshes and especially the tidal creeks.
BL Inlet Tog Fishing
Tog fishing is awesome. The inlet continues to fire on all cylinders. Joe O stopped in yesterday and report fishing was great, “Everyone is out having fun catching fish. If you know what you are doing, finding good size keepers is an everyday thing.” Joe had one pushing five pounds.
Dave Hershberger reported, “Nice day to go fishing with the boyz.”
The Yozuri Hydo LC Minnow are in stock now! It’s been a long wait but it’s finally over. A big thanks to the guys at Yo-zuri for not only making another amazing fishing lure but more importantly releasing it before the expected availability date. They knew the North East bite would be on so they air shipped the lures in rather than having everyone wait for the lures to float over on a slow boat.
Yo-zuri is well known for making some of the finest, best catching fishing lures on the planet. Crystal Minnow, Mag Minnow, Mag Darter, Surface Cruiser, Hydro Pencil just a few. Their lure designers are always one step ahead of the market place and therefor responsible for some of the best new lure designs.
The Yo-Zuri Hydro Minnow LC Minnow is a brand new slender minnow style bait which floats and swims 2-3′ with a tight wiggle action. Featuring a new weight transfer system for long casting, the Hydro Minnow LC is a lure designed for the ultimate long cast. Even with a stiff headwind, the Yo-Zuri Hydro LC Minnow will cast like a bullet allowing the zone to be within your reach.
Available in two sizes in a great assortment of awesome time tested proven fish catching color patterns. The Hydro Minnow LC covers any and all fishing situations. Casting striped bass on the surf to hunting down inshore species like redfish, snook and tarpon. The ultimate coastal fishing lure.
Best of all Yo-zuri makes these lures to be the strongest possible utilizing extra tough and durable proprietary polycarbonate material as well as rigging the lures 3X strong treble hooks and heavy duty split rings. These lures are ready to fish right out of the box and will catch saltwater trophy gamefish.
Here’s the link to the Yo-zuri Hydro Minnow LC 6″ size and the larger 6-3/4″ size. Both sizes have a spot in my surf bag and will be in my every day rotation. I’m already looking forward to the productivity and versitility these lures will offer especially when fishing rough conditions and casting is the utmost concern. These lures are surf bag staples!
We caught slot and keeper stripers in the inlet yesterday on live bait. Apparently while we were doing that, boats from Island Beach to Asbury Park were trolling 25 to 35 pound bass on spoons and mojos. The surf guys caught some fish and there was even some bird play and migration style fishing on the northern end of this bite. It’s time to throw the ropes and have everything on board: trolling gear, snaggers, jigs, swim shads, squid jigs, live bait………we’re going to pack it all. The water temperature dipped into the high 50’s and the fish are on the move. This is what we have all been waiting for!
Open Boat or Charter tomorrow, Saturday Nov 11, 6:30AM departure, return around 2 PM. $175 person, 4 people max. All fish are shared. This is the trip that we are going to make the pics and video happen.
Raging northeast winds and high waves have made fishing difficult recently for the boats of the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association. There is hope this nasty weather will bring about some positive changes to stimulate some striped bass action.
Captain Fran Verdi of the “Francesca Marie” has experienced several good years in a row putting his anglers on striped bass. He notes the current water temperatures are still in the 60’s, which is really too warm for consistent bass action. The current weather has him hopeful those water temperatures will drop and the fish will head south.
“I have heard of a big mass of fish to the north of, us, we just have to be patient,” notes Captain Fran. Despite some very thick fog one day recently, he jumped in his boat and headed for the inlet. The normally quick trip took exceptionally long thanks to the fog, but he preserved and finally made the ocean where he headed north.
Captain Fran dropped a green bunker spoon over the stern and spent some time trolling off Seaside. His patience was finally rewarded and he was able to hook and boat a fat 34-pound bass. Now it is a matter of waiting for the current weather to break, and more fish to arrive. When they do arrive there will be no time to waste.
Additional information on the Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association website.