Wednesday, September 24, 2008: Waves: Strong 6- to 8-foot short-period northerly wind swell. Water clarity: Fair but getting roiled rapidly. Winds: From now through Friday gusts will exceed 40 mph in squalls.
Not good. That’s pretty much it, be it fishing, surfing, beach hiking, i.e. daily LBI life in general.
This blow is going to be significant; maybe not one for the record books but enough to possibly impact the early portion of the fall surfcasting season. I say that because last week’s week-long NE wind session gnawed at the beach areas that commonly erode. Now we’re low on sand thereabouts and looking to take a hit easily twice as erosional as last week. That could mean some cut-off points for beach driving. Those cutoffs occur on the beaches that get too skinny to drive on, especially around the beach ends of jetties. Cutoffs prevent driving through to the next portion of beach, meaning a turn-around and a beach exiting, never a fun thing when sand is soft.
Our only saving grace is the great build-up of sand we had over the very wave-calm summer. Still, as noted, that build-up is draining off fast. Areas in Brant Beach and south of Nebraska Avenue will be the first to go impassable. Holgate is acting up around the Osprey Nest and roughly 1,000 feet south of there. Also, there is a standing water situation as you approach the Rip. That can become very problematic if that lake widens and holds water even during low tide. It’s actually better is erosion breaks the dike of beach sand holding the water in place. We are in a calmer astronomical period so higher than usual tides will be purely storm driven and not enhanced by the likes of a full-moon pull.
As for fishing (if there is any at all), the bass are in the surf and might be approachable during low tides on the lee (south) side of jetties. Barnegat Light beaches and inlet will be picking up the brunt of the winds but will surely be holding some better bass -- taking advantage of the mullet being knocked around in the currents. Some slammer blues could arrive though 70-degree water temps won’t be very inviting for them. Holgate will remain the choice location with essentially offshore winds at the south-facing points. Still, even there it’ll be a slow pick at the height of the storm tomorrow and into Friday.