Tuesday, September 30, 2008: Waves: 3-4 feet but dropping. Water clarity: Very good.
We are into a fine stretch of what might be called autumnally accurate – if you get tired of saying “It feels like fall.” Starting midweek, cool northerly jet stream air will angle in and air temps, especially nighttime, will drop into the 40s. Importantly, winds will turn westerly and hopefully break the back of that fishing-unfriendly northeast beast we had in-house for over two weeks.
Beaches took a moderate beating through all the storms but sands look fairly stable – and drivable -- for the opening of the Long Beach Township beachfront buggying, Oct 1. There are, of course, tender areas around some jetties. Make sure to be very tentative making initial runs along the front beaches, especially if you’re among the first to drive them for this season. Let me know of any really spooky stretches.
As seas settle, I’m getting more and more reports of small stripers going for plugs and small baits (worms, clams and fake-o). Larger poppers were working but only because of the needed splash to show through the surf suds. Starting today, that plug size will drop – and open the way for the famed 1 ½ oz. blue Gibb’s “Polaris Popper” – among many others.
I was given a RM Smith Danny plug – actually it was part of a trade for a vintage Penn “green” reel. This plug has become famed. And it swims like only a custom plug can. It’s simply super, though our local T.W. plugs are easily on par – and far beyond.
Odd plugging angle: My least favorite plug of all time, the “duh needlefish – easily the most unexciting things to retrieve in the entire plugging realm – is currently doing quite well for a few folks. As with any successful takes, other nearby folks are switching over to try it, with decent luck. I hate to admit it but I have a couple of these beyond-boring artificials. Maybe I’ll try one of those school bus yellow ones (white hair). At least it’s colorful when reeling it in -- like a shiny piece of stupid-stick.
LBI Surf Fishing Classic registration forms are in participating shop. Many have received them in the mail. I have this sense that the higher fuel costs might have many multi-method anglers foregoing the boat thing to work the surf more this fall. You might want to sing up early since the perks this year are hot: A 2008 LBI Surf Fishing Classic hat and a 2008 vehicle window decal; a free exterior carwash coupon presented by Manahawkin Magic Wash; a coupon for a free slice of Panzone's Cheese Pizza, presented by Panzone's Pizza, Surf City; a coupon for a free mini-pack of Berkley Gulp!® presented by Dick's Sporting Goods, Manahawkin.
All of these are “*While supplies last.” As for those highly collectible hats, the Chamber notes: “Each registration outlet receives a supply of hats and coupons based on prior years registration sales. It is possible for some sales locations to run out before others.”
Also, per the Chamber, “If you register by mail, your hat (if we have any remaining) and your button will be held at the Chamber of Commerce. Please pick up your hat by October 25. After that date the hat will be returned to the distribution pool. Your button will be available until the last day of the tournament.”
If surf fishing, make sure to a “small” rod working. Not necessarily “small” in overall size but equipped with a small rig for the kingfish, croakers, spot and other swash fish that are in the system.