Capt. Joe Massa of My Three Sons from Morgan Marina added a Rhodan trolling motor to his 30 foot Grady Canyon, which enables him to fish his blackfish spots without ever dropping an anchor.
The Rhodan features a built in GPS that locks you on your favorite wrecks or rockpiles, and
takes bottom fishing to another level. Massa had the Rhoden installed by their N.J. dealer, J and
M boat repairs (732 318-7044).
I was quite impressed as it held us on 3 different spots for 7 hours and kept its charge. Dan Rubino of Keyport was aboard along with famed Staten Island striper pro Capt. Vinny Vetere of Katfish from Great Kills — who was taking a busman’s Holiday to do some bottom fishing.
Massa first fished a spot off Breezy Point where he had been catching jumbo porgies, and I promptly had scup of 16 and 17 inches take my green crab-baited hook. Dan also caught a similar porgy on crab, but Vinnie could only get small sea bass hits on clam. Then, out-of-season blackfish took over and only one more jumbo porgy was boated.
Massa briefly tried sea bass jigging at Scotland before moving down the beach to his favorite tautog bottoms. I quickly came up with a nice sea bass on crab (see photo below) but after that we had to fight the little sea bass in order to enjoy a good bite of tog up to 19 inches. As the wind direction shifted a bit and swells pushed the boat off the honey hole, the Rhoden automatically took us right back. When the bite slowed, Massa used the remote control to move the boat around the spot to find more tog.
The Rhodan isn’t cheap, but it seems like a must for serious bottom fishermen as it eliminates all the hassles of anchoring on a small spot and staying there regardless of tidal or weather conditions before just returning it to its holder and running home. No more expensive anchors lost in the bottom!
While fishing in several ocean areas, we saw many schools of “happy” bunkers finning on the surface, though nothing seemed to be hitting them. We also saw birds picking on tiny surface bait off Sandy Hook, but there were no splashes in them or fish marks on the fishfinder.
There wasn’t anything caught during the first day of this weekend’s Barrier Island Beach Brawl that can’t be beaten. There was a 4.17-pound triggerfish; a 4.38-pound bluefish; a 3.36-pound blackfish; and a 0.74-pound kingfish.
The Mimi VI from Point Pleasant is sailing open at 6:30 a.m. Sunday .The fare is $90, and reservations can be made by calling 732 370-8019.
Today’s windy weather prevented the Golden Eagle out of Belmar from getting out to the big blues they jigged yesterday. They fished in calmer waters closer to shore and found small weakfish that included a few keepers while adding some small blues and sea bass.
There are small craft warnings up tonight, but it’s supposed to drop to north at 10-15 knots by morning before northeast gusts to 20 in the afternoon. A gale watch is in effect from late Sunday night through Monday afternoon.