As the days pass we get closer and closer to prime time spring striped bass fishing. Mother’s Day is a classic point of reference on the Calendar marking a time when bluefish and striped bass are here. The Central Jersey Coast’s Spring bell curve of ocean run striped bass starts with Mother’s Day, peaks around Memorial Day, then fades out by July 4th. (Fall:_Halloween/Thanksgiving\Christmas_). The local area’s best spring bass fishing is usually the last week or two of May as well as the first week or two of June. Since everything seems to be a couple weeks late, it will be interesting to see how this pans out. Soon enough, time will tell.
First Boat Bass Out Front
This weekend brought the first reports of boat trolled bass. Maybe it went down sooner but we have not received a positive first hand report until now. Mike Nini reported mid 30″ range striped bass off of southern LBI. Fishing out of Little Egg Inlet his screen was loaded while picking away at bass trolling Mojos.
Another report came in from Vin Rossi and Yonni Weidenhof. They were on the search working the waters around Holgate. Yonni reported, “We passed up some small bird plays in the bay and took a look out front. Turns out it looked like the dead sea. We worked some good looking areas casting lures in close to the surf zone. We managed a few bass.”
Lots of striped bass with occasional bluefish on the surf
Small and hungry striped bass continue to cruise the suds of Long Beach Island. Numerous reports this past week which continued this weekend.
Chris Colasante from Surf City enjoyed his Saturday afternoon/evening (4-6pm) bait fishing the surf. “The top of the incoming high was good. Nice clean and clear water with enough white water to flushing over the sandbars. My Lamiglas Surf Rod was working the magic getting every bite.” Chris caught four bass, “One was a guppy. The smallest I’ve ever caught.” The other three were also shorts with one being close to keeper size.
Last night (Saturday) from 6-8pm Jason from Woodridge caught four bass, one keeper bait fishing the mid-island surf. Another customer in the shop reported a handful of striped bass plugging the south end surf.
Store staff Kelley hit the beach after closing the shop tonight. He just shared this report, “I had a good inaugural ceremony with my new Van Staal Fishing Reel. Caught some bluefish this evening on lures right into sunset.
While not a direct report we have heard of a few classy fish recently caught. Keep an eye out and be ready for the better bite!
Black Sea Bass Opens Tuesday May 15th: 15 fish at 12.5″
We are excited to announce Simply Bassing is now the Spring Derby! For 16 years “Simply Bassing” the LBI Spring Surf Fishing Tournament was a great competitive way for anglers to enjoy surf fishing the beaches of Long Beach Island. With the awesome spring bluefish action lots of anglers asked (many demanded) a bluefish division. Finally it’s added!
Now more than ever, the Long Beach Island Spring Surf Fishing Tournament continues to offer Jersey Shore anglers the State’s best surf fishing tournament. Sticking to its roots, it’s a family fun surf fishing tournament with a simple format. Most importantly it’s a low kill contest that awards only the top fish/anglers by weight. Daily, weekly or segment prizes do not exist. If your fish can not beat the three top leaders, please release your fish to swim another day or responsibly harvest for a delicious dinner.
The LBI Spring Derby will start on April 21st and end on June 24, 2018. It’s $20 to register for the 9 week striped bass and bluefish surf fishing tournament. Top Three Striped Bass and Top Three Bluefish Win Cash! Based on 100 registered anglers: First Place Bass and First Place Bluefish get $500 each (25% Payout), Second Place Bass and Second Place Bluefish get $300 each (15% Payout), Third Place Bass and Third Place Bluefish get $200 each (10% Payout).
With spring surf fishing right around the corner, it’s time to Save The Dates Now! Registration will begin in the near future (about a week or so). Sign Up Soon and get ready to fish your favorite LBI beach!
“Fishing’s like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get!”
Here’s a story from Comanche Surfcasting’s South Philly Fred…
Every once in awhile something special happens. This story is about Cutter, a fly fishing guide from Colorado studying at Princeton. During this year’s Mullet Run, fishing a hard north east blow, I ran into a man. He looked confused and out of place. So, I introduced myself. We began to talk during the slack high tide. It turns out it was his first time fishing the NJ coast and was in search of a striped bass on the fly. A bit overwhelmed by the super tough and rough conditions, he was hesitant and asked a lot of questions. A lot of really good questions. I could tell this guy was the real deal.
A bit later into our conversation, the tide started moving by now and I noticed a curious seagull hovering over a specific area. I told Cutter, “We need to cast in that area!” Sure enough as soon as my bucktail hit the water I was tight to a striper. Next cast, another one! Third cast, another one! I looked back at Cutter and he was bowed! We were doubled up!!! I quickly released a bass I had on and ran over to assist him. Cutter said, “This is a good fish!” I leadered and pulled the fish gently towards me and I couldn’t believe my eyes… I yelled through the 20 knot wind, “IT’S A RED FISH!” Bottom line… Cutter’s first fish in NJ salt is a red on the fly… unbelievable! When you are fishing just never know what you are gonna get!
Now on to a fishing report update…
Lots of bluefish around in our waters. Anglers in the surf are mowing through bunker in search of bass, getting torn up by the yellow eyed piranha. These blues range from 1-10+ pounds
The awesome backwater fishign contiues for both schoolie bass and weakfish. Anglers are catching using hardbait lures, swimbait shads and bucktail jigs. The classic Lunker City Fin-s & Sluggos are going the trick too!
Today a customer in the shop today buying some striped bass trolling gear reported his neighbor got a pair of classy bass trolling bunker spoons off of LBI in 40 foot of water. “Both fish were 20 pound class or bigger.” Today we also got a report of adult bunker podded up off of IBSP.
There’s still some fluke hanging around the surf. Hungryforsimplicity posted a photo on Instagram with this caption, “Surf fishing LBI… There is something perfect about a beach with only a few people on it. Oh and we caught flounder, plus saw a pod of dolphin.”
LBI Fall Classic Update
The Long Beach Island surf hasn’t officially lit up but anglers are finding fish. Today closes out on day 11 of the 63rd Annual Surf Fishing Classic. So far it’s safe to say the tournament is off to a great start. With 10 blues and four bass the scales are active.
Yesterday afternoon Steve Warren was in the shop before he hit the beach. Turns out he got a nice striper shortly after leaving. Steve currently leads with the largest striped bass (and senior division) at 18.96 pounds.
Gary Grippaldi checked in a good size gator bluefish this past weekend and he sits on top holding the largest bluefish with his 14.12 pound yellow eye.
Chet Bojarski is putting in time and catching. He currently leads the bluefish senior division and has second place overall bluefish with his 13.16 pound racer.
It’s great to see the fishing groms getting in the game! The youth division has fish on the board. The youth bass leader is Logan Johnson (8.1 pound) and the bluefish leader is Quinn Rutan (12.52 pound). So far no fish checked in by a female angler. For more details on the current standing go to www.LBIFT.com
LBI Surf Fishing Classic Special Prizes
Another Bonus Day Is Coming Up!!! October 19th $250 Cash Award For The Largest Striped Bass in Honor of Ric O’Brien from Jingles Bait & Tackle.
Here’s some additional prizes… Week Two Special Prizes
Sunday October 15th $100.00 Gift Certificate To Fisherman Headquarters For Heaviest Bass
Monday October 16th
Tuesday October 17th Otw Aluminum With Attached Clip & Rag. Retails For Almost $50.00 Goes To The 2nd Largest Bass Weighed In Today
Wednesday October 18th
Thursday October 19th $250.00 Cash Award For Largest Striped Bass In Honor Of Ric O’Brien From Jingles Bait And Tackle
Friday October 20th
Saturday October 21st $100.00 Gift Certificate To Fisherman Headquarters For Heaviest Bass–9 Foot Shakespeare Alpa Combo For Biggest Striper Entered By A Juvenile Angler Donated By EP Sales
Inlet Tog Fishing
The light house is a great place to fish almost year round. For the past couple moths the tog fishing has been very good. Now’s the time to gear up and get in on the fun. Anglers are catching all along park’s water front.
The schoolies bass continue to chew in the bay. Anglers fishing poppers soft baits. And jig are having a blast
One angler got a reddish this past weekend.
Here’s some photos of a couple recent weigh-in.
Save the date for these upcoming boat fishing tournaments!
The 21st Sea Shell Striped Bass Derby (All Boat Tournament) is October 27, 28, 29th.
The Maximilian Foundation Annual Striped Bass Bash (All Boat Tournament & Fish Fry) is November 4th
The Forked River Tuna Club Fall Striped Bass Tournament is November 4th to 11th.