Page 25 of 55

Blackfish biting in the new year

Water temperatures are still good for blackfish, and some days they bite pretty well. The Big Mohawk from Belmar had some limits up to 8 pounds today and will be sailing at 7 a.m. tomorrow.

Jerry Lasko reports that Maren Toleno caught a school striper this morning at Belmar. He saw two others hooked, but they didn’t have any other hits from a very fishable surf.

The forecast is southeast 5-10 knots in the morning before it gusts to 20 knots in the afternoon when small craft advisories are posted .

A Fishy New Year to all

Here’s wishing a Fishy New Year to all my readers.

There were no positive reports this morning from the surf despite the mild temperatures — but I expect that opportunities for school stripers will continue for some time.

The Big Mohawk from Belmar had good blackfishing on Monday, with some limits and a 9 1/2-pound pool winner. They are planning on fishing Wednesday.

The forecast is for north winds at 10-15 knots in the morning with gusts to 20. The wind shifts to southwest on Thursday at 10-15 along with a chance of rain.

Gale warning going up

A gale warning for strong west winds is going up at 6 p.m. and extends into Tuesday afternoon. The surf has been calm, and the predicted wind should blow more water off the beach making it too shallow to fish at low tide in some areas.

The forecast is for gusts to 40 knots tomorrow before going north at 10-15 with gusts to 20.

Jerry Lasko fished Belmar this morning where Maren Toleno managed one striper. There were no swirling fish nor signs of bait, but both of them also missed a few bumps.

Vinny D’Anton had a report from a bit further south where jack crevalle were hitting his Chug Bug at Sarasota on the Gulf coast of Florida.

Promising Forecast a great read for boaters

What would you do if you suddenly found yourself swimming away from your sinking boat on the way out to the canyons? That’s exactly what happened to five anglers heading out from Ocean City, N.J, in a promising forecast of diminishing northwest winds to fish for tuna on Sept. 14, 1986 when the 32-foot center console Hot Stuff “surfed” down a large wave and was then swamped by another that cracked the windshield and put the twin 200-hp outboards underwater. Ocean boaters soon learn that a big following sea can be a  problem as too fast a decent can result in the boat out of control at the bottom of a wave. I experienced something similar many years ago in the giant swells off the Cape of Good Hope when the South African boat I was aboard did the same thing and the wall of water  tore the hatch over the cuddy cabin open — leaving us vulnerable to the next wave. Fortunately, the skipper was able to turn into the next wave and prevent a disaster before we could make repairs.

The N.J. anglers barely had time to get life preservers before the boat went under. They did get a May Day call to the Coast Guard before the electronics were underwater, but it turned out that the message was garbled by another call. This was just before the use of EPIRBs became common, and as a result the survival of the entire crew turned out to be a miracle rescue which is detailed in Promising Forecast by Daniel David Jones and Arthur J. Higbee — a 253-page soft-cover which is available from Amazon. Every boater should read that fascinating first hand account of survival at sea.

Capt. Joe Massa of My Three Sons at Morgan Marina joined Guy Talerico on Jer-Sea Patriot out of Jersey City for a last try at stripers today, but found no trace of them. There was bait and gannets were diving, but they had no hits on live eels and marked no bass even though the water temperature was a mild 47 degrees. Two whales put on a show in just 24 feet off Breezy Point.

On the other hand, stripers are still a possibility in the surf. Frank Manzi reported that Jim Louro and Tommy Cox combined for 10 up to to 24 inches  this morning at Belmar. Frank got there late and still managed a couple of smaller ones. The forecast for the morning is south at 5-10 knots before gusting to 20 in the afternoon.

My nephew, Todd Correll, recently had one of his best trips from Fort Lauderdale as he ran his Viking 70 to Cay Sal in the Bahamas to troll up lots of wahoo weighing at least 50 pounds. His son, Connor, is shown with a 60-pounder. They also were into many yellowfin tuna, barracuda and dolphin while a blue marlin jumped off.

Connor wahoo

Some stripers still in the surf

Though I suspected the surf might have been dirty this morning, Frank Manzi reported that it was quite fishable at Belmar where the regulars picked from one to three small bass this morning. Jerry Lasko fished there later in the afternoon and Maren Toleno caught one bass while they had a few other hits. Steve Mirande tried Bay Head this morning to no avail.

The Big Mohawk from Belmar reported it turned out to be a nice day at sea with decent blackfishing and some limits up to 8 pounds. They’ll be sailing at 6:30 Sunday morning.

Terrible weather, but one angler hit it big

I’m sure there were very few anglers who even took a look at the ocean today, but Vinny D’Anton found a report online from “Two-pole Mike”  that he caught 28 stripers from 14 to 24 inches early this morning at an undisclosed location along the northern N.J. surf. He got there just as the storm was starting, and it was very fishable in green water at dawn as he caught the bass steadily on his home-made sand eel imitation plus a teaser.

Chances are that the surf is now badly discolored, and that it will take quite a bit of west wind to clear it up.

The forecast is for 20-25 knots south winds with gusts to 35 today before a switch to 15-20 west in the morning with gusts to 25. That won’t last long as the Sunday forecast is for northwest at just 5-10 knots.

Even Jerry Lasko didn’t fish this morning, but he reported reading a mild enough 47 degrees yesterday in the IBSP surf.

Poor weather coming`

South winds will be bringing warmer temperatures, but with rain and rough seas as a coastal storm arrives.

Surfcasters probably won’t be missing much. Jerry Lasko said Maren Toleno did catch two stripers this morning at Point Pleasant, but he didn’t hear of anything up at Belmar and found nothing after moving down to IBSP during the morning. Even the loons that had led him to some bass there yesterday were missing.

Bob Matthews, at Fisherman’s Den in Belmar Marina, said the Big Mohawk, Ocean Explorer and Capt. Cal have been doing well with blackfish whenever they can sail. Several 10-12-pounders have been weighed in. Small bass are still a possibility in the surf, but few anglers are working at it.

Paramount to take overflow trip for jumbo sea bass

With good weather forecasted for Thursday, the 100-foot Paramount is running an “overflow” trip tonight  to the far offshore wrecks for jumbo sea bass as the  Big Jamaica is fully booked. The Paramount will leave Brielle at 9 p.m.  This trip is limited to 25 anglers at a fare of $195. Call 732 528-5014 for reservations. The return is at about 6 p.m. Thursday.

The Mimi VI at Point Pleasant will be sailing open for blackfish at 7 a.m. Saturday through Tuesday — as well as Thursday, Saturday and Sunday of next week. The fare is $75, and reservations can be made by calling 732 370-8019.

The surf was calm this morning, but Jerry Lasko said he only caught one striper at Island Beach State Park. He had picked at bass there during the morning on Christmas by casting to the loons as they chased sand eels. Those birds rarely make a mistake, but a loon did hit Lasko’s TsunamiMaren-tuna.jpg 6-inch Sand Eel  before shaking the lure out. Lasko shot this photo of Maren Toleno with the bluefin tuna that washed up at IBSP recently. It definitely didn’t hit the Tsunami Sand Eel in its mouth.

Carl Grano tried Bay Head this morning with a swim shad and teaser, but had no hits. Vinny D’Anton only heard of one bass caught by Tommy Cox at Belmar this morning. The forecast is for north 5-10 knots in the morning before shifting to east in the afternoon. That’s the start of bad weather, with southeast winds gusting to 25 after midnight tomorrow — before 20-25 south on Friday along with rain.

Merry Christmas!

Here’s hoping all of my blog followers are enjoying a very merry Christmas! With west winds prevailing, fishing prospects for the week are good.

Some stripers return to surf

There was some life in the surf to the north this morning, but no good news to the south.

Jim Louro caught five small bass at Belmar on his custom paddletail jig, and others also picked there early.  However, Jerry Lasko reported that it was dead in IBSP despite clean waters there. The waters remained dirty from beach replenishment at Lavallette.

The northwest wind is predicted to still be blowing 15-20 knots Christmas morning, but should diminish during the day. Hopefully school stripers will be back at Bay Head this week.

Merry Christmas!Al-Bay Head