Today’s south wind and the forecast of rain seemed to keep almost everyone in — and Friday looks like a blowout as the hard NW wind N.J. surfcasters have been hoping for finally arrives.

Most skippers have already cancelled for Friday, so be sure to check with the skipper before coming down tomorrow,

Though surf conditions should be fishable, waters may still be dirty from today’s  south winds. Grumpy’s Tackle in Seaside Park reported that 1-to-2-pound blues continued to cooperate in the surf  on Wednesday– and all you needed was metal.

Vinny D’Anton started out in Shark River   this morning and caught a couple of very small stripers, but kept working at it and eventually got a blast on his Chug Bug that turned out to be a hefty blue of 6-7-pounds. Blues that size haven’t been in the river for weeks. Yet, that was the only one. Vinny isn’t expecting much tomorrow as the barometer is falling like a stone. He also tried the beaches at Spring Lake, Belmar and Manasquan with no results.

I tried Point Pleasant Canal in the morning and was surprised not to see anyone fishing. That might have been because of the fishing as I didn’t get a touch on a paddetail jig, and saw no signs of fish.

There was an odd report the previous day at the canal as I talked to an angler who had been getting tails of his paddletails nipped off before finally hooked the attacker that turned out to be a 14-inch blackfish. Those lures are being fished every day during the season in the canal, but I never before heard of a blackfish hitting one.  I have caught  a very few tog on artificials over the years in the ocean, but it’s a rare exception for that crustacean eater.

I had fished the night before with Chuck Many and his crew on Tyman from Gateway Marina in Highlands as we got a break from the fog which had enveloped that area earlier and enjoyed  decent conditions for a late afternoon trip. Unfortunately, the Hudson River stripers didn’t appreciate our offers of live adult bunkers that Chuck had castnetted — or the bunker chunks we offered at anchor after dark even though we had some very good readings. We all had hits that wouldn’t stay with the baits to provide a hooking attempt, and only one 33-inch striper was released.  The water temperature going across the bay had gone up from 71 to 72 degrees, and it’s hardly surprising that we’re still dealing only with our hard hit Hudson River stock as the waters are far too warm for a migratory run of stripers and bait from the east to arrive.


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