The 156-boat field in The MidAtlantic out of Cape May and Ocean City, Md. concluded a week of canyon trolling today, and will be splitting up a purse of $3,528,760 after dinner tonight.
Nothing changed yesterday as most boats took a lay day in rough seas. The few who got out released some white marlin, but there were no weigh-ins.
That left everything as it was, with Uno Mas leading in the biggest money white marlin division at 71 pounds, while Stalker seems to have a comfortable lead in tuna with bigeyes of 226 and 207 pounds.
There hasn’t been a blue marlin so far that’s made the 400-pound minimum. There’s a tie in dolphin at 33 pounds between Reel Estate and Top Dog, while a relatively small 35-pound wahoo on Chain Reaction leads that division.
I’ll have the results in a late blog after the scales close at 9 p.m.
There was good news from the Golden Eagle out of Belmar that small bluefish were splashing to the north today as fares caught so many that some were releasing before the day was out. Some Spanish and chub mackerel were added along with weakfish — and whales put on a show.
The Jamaica from Brielle didn’t find bonito and little tunny on Thursday, and had to settle for jigging some sea bass and ling — except for Brian Wilhoit of Oxen Hill, Md. who had his 1 1/4-ounce pink Epoxy jig inhaled by a 40-inch bluefin tuna. The Jamaica is switching to the more dependable small blues. They also have a half-night ling trip Saturday at 7:30 p.m. which has been producing well each weekend.
Capt. Vinny Vetere had another good day in the Hudson River with stripers up to 30 pounds on bunker. His Katfish from Great Kills has some openings next week.
Phil Fischer reports Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers are full of bait and snappers. Crabbing is excellent, and blowfish are abundant. Drifting worms may produce legal stripers, and good-sized porgies are finally making an appearance. Fluking remains mostly a matter of shorts, but that could change when water temperatures start falling.
The Big Mohawk from Belmar had a tougher day fluking today as the drift was too fast. They sail at 6 a.m. Saturday.,
I got back to casting in the Monmouth County surf this morning. Though there was relatively low water, I hooked a 24-inch striper within a few casts with a Rattlin’ Chug Bug. However, a surfer arrived right after the release and I never raised another fish.
The forecast for the morning is northeast at .10-15 knots with gusts to 20.