Even when keepers were hard to some by, Capt. Rob Semkewyc had been finding lots of short stripers with his Sea Hunter from Atlantic Highlands. However, all that changed today. The bait was still there, but not a single short could be jigged — and Capt. Rob is throwing in the towel on the season a bit earlier than last year.
Surfcasters should have more time, but you couldn’t prove that by my results this morning. I took a first light look at Pt. Pleasant, but moved on to Bay Head where there was some good-looking whitewater. I only got one very light tap there, and later found that some striper action had developed where I almost started. Jim Louro had three good-sized schoolies at Belmar, and Vinny D’Anton lost one there. Jerry Lasko caught two bass in IBSP and Maren Toleno had three as there was only a very early bite.
Sand eels are the attractor, and they tend to move around. Surprisingly, Grumpy’s Tackle in Seaside Park had reports of bass being hooked on swim shads. I haven’t heard of any peanut bunkers in the surf for weeks. Everything could be different tomorrow as the perfect conditions of today with a light northwest wind are forecasted to change to east at 10-15 knots.
The Big Mohawk from Belmar reported that blackfishing was slower than yesterday, though some limits were taken. They’ll be sailing at 6:30 in the morning.