Winter blackfishing has been generally tough, but the Ocean Explorer from Belmar got a big surprise Wednesday when big tog were chewing despite lumpy seas even with northwest winds. “Mr. P” had the tog catch of a lifetime with six from 10 to 14 pounds. The 14 would have taken out the 10.8-pounder leading the seasonal pool if he had been entered. Many 6-10-pounders were caught by other anglers. High winds have prevented a return, but they have hopes of getting out Saturday. The Big Mohawk from Belmar did poorly Sunday and Monday — and have given up for the winter.

Fin-Essence shedder crab essence has long been sold at the Tackle Box in Hazlet, but is now also available at Bass Pro Shops and Cabelas both online and in the northeast stores. Dipping lures and baits in that smelly stuff can make a big difference at times.

A gale warning is up through Saturday morning. Friday starts with northwest winds at 25-30 knots with gusts to 40 and light freezing spray.

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