It appears the forecast of some mid-morning rain and even a possible thunderstorm was enough to scare off most anglers. Capt. Rob Semkewyc shaped up with his Sea Hunter from Atlantic Highlands for another shot at the big stripers he found Sunday, but didn’t get enough to sail — and most other party boats didn’t post reports.
It’s supposed to be a bit breezy tomorrow, but the lack of rain should bring more fishermen out. West winds of 15-20 knots should help settle the swell before diminishing to 10-15 in the afternoon. Thursday looks even better with NW 10-15.
The surf was booming this morning, and I only made three casts before retreating as it was too rough for fishing and dangerous when casting as the big waves swept up the beach and can knock you down as the waters rush back to sea. A move to Point Pleasant Canal provided much nicer conditions even though it appears that only three school stripers had been caught. I didn’t get a touch, but returned briefly later in the morning during the ebb to break the ice with a schoolie on a Z Man 6-inch white Swimmereez just before the rain started.
Offshore waters remain warm, but Capt. Chris Di Stefano knew of five boats that fought through the early dry northeaster on Sunday morning to look for the bluefins that have been jumping not too far from shore — but didn’t find any. Don’t write that fishing off yet as bluefins can stick around into December during warm falls.
Bob Matthews at Fisherman’s Den in Belmar Marina reminds anglers that there’s good blackfishing in Shark River Inlet and winter flounder fishing from the Belmar docks.
Fall surfcasting has been disappointing so far, but there are still lots of bass feeding on big sand eels to the east. As an example of how slow it’s been along the Jersey Shore, the striped bass leader in the 64th Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Classic as of this week is a 10.9-pounder caught on bunker Oct. 31 at Ship Bottom by T.J. Loughran Jr. The contest runs from Oct. 6 to Dec. 9, and used to produce some jumbo bass for anglers who fish bunker day and night even long before the migratory run arrives.