Wed., Nov. 22, 2017
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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 7-24-17

<b>Keyport</b>

Fluking was slow Friday and Saturday aboard but much better Sunday, Capt. Frank from the <b>Vitamin Sea</b> wrote in an email. On Sunday the boat was run in a different direction, and the six anglers bagged 14 fluke, releasing about 45 throwbacks. They also bagged a few sizable sea bass to 4 pounds. So they managed some keepers. Friday’s trip fluked the back of Raritan Bay, clocking a couple of keepers and some shorts on the first drift. But the angling died afterward, for whatever reason. Saturday’s trip ran all over the ocean, and fluking was slow. A 5-pounder was the biggest swung in, and a mess of sea bass blanketed the rough bottom. The anglers managed to bag some good-sized. Porgies are schooling all over bottom. Charters are fishing, and two spots are available for an open-boat trip Wednesday. Spots are available Saturday and next Monday, too. Telephone to reserve.

For the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, fluke fishing on the ocean was picking up, Capt. Mario said. Lots of sizable were lit into, and big sea bass were mixed in. Open-boat trips are fishing for them daily on the Down Deep Bull. On the Down Deep, the company’s other boat, daily, open trips are bottom-fishing on the ocean. That angling pounded excellent catches of porgies, including big, and some sea bass. Each type of trip is also sailing at 2 p.m. every Friday and Saturday. Charters are available, and join the Short Notice List on <a href="http://downdeepsportfishing.com" target="_blank">Down Deep’s website</a> to be kept informed about special open trips, like the afternoon trips. Look for the link underneath “Contact.”

<b>Leonardo</b>

Porgies and more porgies were shoveled aboard this weekend, said Capt. Joe from <b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b>. The fishing also limited out on sea bass. Plus, a fluke trip landed just two fish less than the boat’s limit during the weekend. The trip fished deep-water rocks in the ocean, and fluking’s “turning around,” starting to be good. Mostly bucktails are being fished for them aboard. Bring Gulps to include on the bucktails. Clams are being fished for the porgies and sea bass. Was a good weekend of fishing.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

A few keeper fluke were axed on each trip on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. Trips fished Sandy Hook Bay and Flynn’s Knoll, and shorts turned up more action on some trips than others. On some trips, not even shorts bit well. Sometimes conditions affected the angling, and sometimes didn’t. Sometimes a few of the fish bit on a drift, and the drift was repeated, and catches couldn’t be repeated. On one trip in past days, a few keepers were clubbed per drift, and then fluke suddenly stopped chewing. But all trips have been fishing, and sometimes the bay is an advantage, sheltering fishing during rough weather. Trips are sailing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.

Two great charters fished Friday and Saturday on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Weather was hot, but great action was whipped. Friday’s trip targeted sea bass more than fluke for the action, but a handful of fluke were also iced. All anglers left with dinner. And a tan! On Saturday’s charter, many more fluke were drilled, and seas bass gave up great action once again. The fluke weighed up to 4 pounds, and daily, open-boat fishing for fluke resumed Sunday aboard. The first couple of drifts fished slowly, but once the tide changed, the anglers began slugging away at the flatfish. Several anglers bagged two sizable and some sea bass apiece. Sea bass failed to bite as well as on the previous days, and that seemed because of a swell. A fluke just under 7 pounds won the pool, and bait fished better than bucktails this day. The boat is fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. However, a charter is booked this Saturday morning, so no open-boat trip will fish then.

<b>Neptune</b>

Many porgies, a good number of triggerfish, a fluke and a couple of sea bass were smashed Friday on a charter with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email. On Saturday, a charter cleaned up on big sea bass, limiting out on them, a good number of sizable ling and some winter flounder, blackfish and throwback cod. Great day of fishing and great day on the water, Ralph said. On Sunday, a charter crushed porgies and triggers, the best triggerfishing Ralph saw in many years, and returned early. Room is available on the weekly, individual-reservation trip for fluke and sea bass Tuesday, and the trip might fish first for triggers and porgies, if all anglers agree. The trips sail every Tuesday, and kids under 12 sail free on those outings, limited to one per adult host. Individual-reservation trips will fish inshore wrecks Aug. 2 and 21. Individual-reservation trips will sail for cod at 2 a.m. Aug. 9 and 30.

<b>Belmar</b>

Fluke trips are slated for this week with <b>XTC Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Scott said. Sea bass are also being pasted on the trips, and the fluking, on the ocean, has been decent. The sea bassing is as good as it gets, though only two per angler is the bag limit. A couple of offshore canyon trips sailed aboard. Not many tuna showed up, but a couple of bluefin tuna were angled closer to shore on the way back. During the canyon fishing, a few mako sharks, none large, and some tiger and hammerhead sharks were reeled in. Tilefish were also cranked up.

<b>Celtic Stoirm Charters</b> fished Saturday and Sunday, and a trip canceled Friday, Capt. Mike said. Red-hot sea bass fishing was pasted, and a couple of fluke were bagged. The trips fished sticky bottom with bait or bucktails, depending on angler preference. Sometimes tackle is lost in the bottom. The fluking’s picking up, because of warming water. The surface was 76 or 77 degrees. So things are looking up. Blacktip sharks blitzed the water surface on Sunday’s trip, a sight to see. Take advantage of a discount for ½-day trips on Tuesdays through Thursdays, including for trips with kids. This is a good time of year to take kids.

With <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>, ocean fluke fishing was good Thursday, considering how hot the weather was, Capt. Pete said. The fishing was excellent Friday aboard. On Saturday, a trip on the boat competed in the Point Pleasant Elks’ fluke tournament, focusing on big fluke on the ocean. A bunch of good-sized were picked up. The fluking’s becoming good, is decent. Pete expects the angling to improve the rest of the month and in August. Fishing bucktails is the way to go. Trips include On the Water Seminars that teach bucktailing for big fluke. Don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Contact Parker Pete’s about individual spaces available with charters who want more anglers. Sign up for the email blast on <a href=" http://www.parkerpetefishing.com/" target="_blank">Parker Pete’s website</a> to be kept informed about the spaces.

All anglers easily limited out on sea bass Sunday on the ocean on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, super fishing, a report said on the party boat’s website. Some bonito and ling were also pitched aboard, and on Saturday’s trip, mostly sea bass were socked, and fluke and ling were caught. Super fishing again. The boat is fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Fishing and sunset cruises are running 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

An 11-1/2-pound fluke was lambasted on Thursday afternoon’s trip on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, an email from the party boat said. Four other keeper fluke, many limits of sea bass and some ling and tommy cod were decked. On Friday morning’s trip, good fishing for sea bass, ling and a few fluke was rustled up. The day was beautiful, and all anglers had a great time, it said. The boat is bluefishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. Trips are also fishing for fluke and other bottom-fish 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily. The afternoon trips also watch whales and porpoises and catch the sunset on the ride home.

<b>Brielle</b>

A 926-pound mako shark was landed on the Jenny Lee from Brielle on Saturday, said Alex from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. The fish is a potential record for largest shark caught on hook and line in New Jersey, and was caught at Hudson Canyon after a 1-1/2-hour fight. An 880-pound tiger shark is currently the largest shark in the records in the state. Not much was heard about tuna fishing. Bluefin tuna fishing at mid-range became slower that was productive previously. Those who could find no bluefins sometimes shot to Hudson Canyon farther from shore and boated mahi mahi that were biting. Yellowfin tuna 30 to 40 pounds were angled at the Cole wreck farther south. Baitfish, porpoises and whales swam there. Closer to shore, fluke fishing was pretty good on the ocean. The fish were hooked fairly consistently at Axel Carlson and Sea Girt reefs on bucktails or jigheads with Gulps. If fluke trips fished rough bottom, they could often grab sea bass, too. Two boats tied for first place with a 9.6-pound fluke apiece in Saturday’s Point Pleasant Elks fluke tournament, and the prize was reportedly $18,000 each. Manasquan River’s fluking was fairly good from Route 35 Bridge to Point Pleasant Canal on 1- or 1-1/2-ounce jigheads with Gulps. Small striped bass 20 to 28 inches were played at the canal on small plugs, small bucktails and rubber shads at night. In the surf, sand tiger and brown sharks, both required to be released, bit at night on baits like fresh bunker, fresh bunker heads or frozen mackerel. So did large rays.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

<b>Mushin Sportfishing</b> continued sailing for tuna from Cape May, Capt. Alan wrote in an email. The boat’s been docked there the past month, and the trips fished both inshore and offshore lately. Yellowfin tuna were caught on every trip, and the fishing took looking on some days. The angling, during chunking, also required light leaders. On a trip Saturday, 30-pound fluorocarbon leaders had to be fished with small, 3/0 hooks, and were actually fished on fluke rods! But yellowfins to 55 pounds were eased in. The fight usually took more than an hour. Tremendous tilefishing was also whacked at offshore canyons on the trips. Mushin will keep after tuna from Cape May, on charters and a limited number of open-boat trips, until the first week of August. Then the boat will be returned to Point Pleasant Beach to continue tuna fishing, at offshore canyons.

For anglers on the <b>Norma-K III</b>, fluking on the ocean was on the slow side a few days through Friday, a report said on the party boat’s website. That was the most recent posted at press time, and anglers who cast around with bucktails with Gulps caught best. But quite a few sea bass snapped, helping customers leave with fish. Trips are fishing rough bottom, so bring extra tackle. Sinkers and plain rigs are available aboard. On Friday night, fishing for small blues was excellent, and all anglers left with plenty. The blues are fun on light tackle. Bring freshwater gear. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily, bluefish 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays and ling 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. Sundays.

Improved fluke fishing was seen today on the ocean on the <b>Gambler</b>, despite choppier seas than before, a report said on the party boat’s website. The angling had been slower this weekend, but new areas were fished aboard this morning that put up better catches. On some of the fluke trips, sea bass are helping to put fish in buckets. Charlie Krippendorf recently took the lead in the monthly pool with a 6.8-pound fluke. Fishing for small blues was very good on trips Friday and Saturday nights, and many anglers limited out. On a wreck-fishing trip Thursday night, fishing was slower than previously but copped ling from small to 4 pounds. Not many squid were jigged, and the water was somewhat dirty, but many anglers tried for them. A <a href="http://www.gamblerfishing.net/tripinformation.php" target="_blank">Shark in the Dark Trip</a> was weathered out Sunday, but four spots remain for another this coming Sunday.  Book online. More of the trips were added for the Sundays of Aug. 6 and 13. The sharking is limited to 25 anglers per trip, reservations required. Sign up soon. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. The boat is bluefishing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays and wreck-fishing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. Thursdays.

<b>Point Pleasant</b>

The <b>Tin Knocker</b> set out for bluefin tuna Saturday, but the fishing was slow, Capt. John said. That was on the troll from the Chicken Canyon to the Texas Towers in greenish, 79-degree water and flat seas. Trips will probably begin to fish the canyons for tuna all the way offshore next week. Space is available for charters this weekend for fluke-and-sea-bass, bluefins or even canyon tuna, if anglers want to begin that fishing right away. 

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Surf fishing was slow last week in oppressive heat, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Fluke and bluefish were picked previously from the water. Sharks chomped at night in the surf at Island Beach State Park. Barnegat Bay’s crabbing was steady last week, and the number of snapper blues seemed to be increasing in the bay and back waters. The Dock Outfitters, located on Barnegat Bay, blocks from the ocean surf, features a bait and tackle shop, a café, a dock for fishing and crabbing, boat rentals and jet-ski rentals. 

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

More keeper fluke than before were slapped aboard the <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b> the past few days, a report said on the party boat’s website. The fishing improved, and sea bass and porgies also made up catches on each trip. Trips are sailing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily on the ocean. Sunset cruises are running at 5:30 p.m. daily, and moonlight cruises are steaming at 8:30 p.m. August 6, 7 and 8. Watch the Atlantic City Air Show on August 23 on the water aboard, lunch included.

<b>Forked River</b>

<b>Tuna-Tic Sportfishing</b> will begin canyon fishing for tuna next week on overnight trips, Capt. Mike said. He would’ve begun already, because tuna catches have begun at the canyons the best they have in the last 10 years. But August is when the trips usually start, and that’s when they’re scheduled. Good catches have already been made throughout the canyons, including, from north to south, the Hudson, Toms, Lindenkohl, Spencer and Wilmington, all on the troll.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Fourteen sharks – spinners, duskies, browns and sandbars – to 100 pounds were creamed on a trip Thursday with Mike Roth and granddaughter aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. The fish were released, and about half were fly-rodded. The other half were hooked on bait, and this was one of the inshore shark trips that fight the big catches close to shore and let them go. Some of the species are required to be let go. On a trip Friday with another party, nine of the sharks, the same species, to 80 pounds were released aboard, all on bait. The fishing is a chance to fight big fish without the long sail offshore. Summer flounder began to be more abundant in the ocean. A trip with two anglers Saturday reeled up a keeper and several throwbacks on the boat. Flounder still gave up good fishing in the back bay, though not many keepers. A group aboard the same day tossed back 25 throwbacks in the bay. High tides in evenings were ideal for striped bass fishing on the bay this past week, and the fish bit. Joe did no fishing for them, but a friend pulled in seven of the bass Saturday evening. Joe’s trips fish popper-plugs and popper-flies for them, good sport, drawing visual attacks along the water surface. Those tides happen every two weeks. Stripers also hit at night in the bay. Mahi mahi arrived in the ocean near shore, and another buddy boated them at one of Joe’s spots Saturday. Joe’s charters had stellar fishing for the dolphin last year. Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="http://captainjoehughes.blogspot.com/" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.

<b>Longport</b>

On the <b>Stray Cat</b>, trips trolled snapper blues, bonito, Spanish mackerel and king mackerel 12 miles from shore, Capt. Mike said. Then each trip switched to sea bass fishing, and caught. The ocean surface was 80 degrees, and for the trolling, patches of clean water had to be found. Much of the water was full of green algae, but pockets of clean intermingled. The sea bass were “up, down” and everywhere, he said, and the fishing just had to find the fish, and once found, stay on them. That angling was also productive, but some places fished well for them, and some fished better. The bottom seemed cold, despite the warm surface, because ling were sometimes hooked. An open-boat trip will target sea bass and summer flounder on Aug. 10. Flounder are beginning to depart back waters and head to the ocean. Because summer flounder season this year closes early beginning Sept. 6, a discount will be offered for tuna trips to the offshore canyons in September, until the sea bass bag limit increases. Anglers should telephone, because of the substantial savings for tuna. Also bring a rod and reel to deep-drop for tilefish with braided line.

<b>Cape May</b>

Bluefish, bonito and Spanish mackerel, pretty good catches, were trolled at 5-Fathom Bank on two trips Friday and Saturday on the <b>Heavy Hitter</b>, Capt. George said. That’s called inshore trolling, and the fishing began to produce. That was the first of the angling this year aboard. Plenty of blues, 1- to 3-pounders, not dinks, swarmed the water and were landed. Eight or nine bonito and a couple of Spanish were also cracked on Friday’s trip, and a bonito and a couple of Spanish also came in on Saturday’s. Tuna fishing is slated aboard for this weekend. In other news, kingfish and small weakfish 10 or 12 inches schooled off Cape May Point. George knew about good fishing for the kings there.

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