Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
Sunday, September 12, 2010:
Wet skies for the first time in too many weeks. Way to little water to make a dent in the drought. Kayak creeks in the pines are either low or dry. Fire danger will remain “red flag” -- highest alert for the forest fire service.
As for angling, it’s a case of all revved up with nothing to catch. Real slow on most fronts. I’m not surprised. The ocean is taking a long time to even think in terms of fall, despite these quite cool nights of late. I often read old issues of The Beachcomber, Beach Haven Times and (newer) The SandPaper, where I see that September has historically been a cruel month, fishing-wise. The same story arises: everyone thinks that fall fishing begins with the end of the tourism season. Not even remotely. I’m guessing that it’ll take well into October to really get things crackin’ – big bass-wise. However, there continues to be pockets of small stripers at some jetties and along the Holgate front beach. Dante S. had some brisk stripering in the surf using a gorgeous mint condition vintage 02 Redfin. As web readers in here know, I consider that long-retired hue the greatest mullet/bunker look-alike color in the history on mankind. It seems that everyone has a goodly number of them but me. I have four, none mint. If you have any (vintage) spares, I’ll pay 20 bucks a pop for them, regardless of size – or smooth or rough (scaled) sides. By the by, Dante had been trying other plugs to no avail, tied on an 02 and got into the briskified bassing.
I hear there are croakers, kingfish and blowfish around but haven’t talked to a soul actually catching them. Actually, in south Barnegat Bay, the all in knowing just what holes those fish frequent prior to migration. Chum remains an essential.
There is a goodly showing of mud mullet in the shallows near inlets but they are not moving much along the beachfront. Per usual, there are always folks seeing “tons of mullet” along the beach. This year those alleged sighting have been mixed with numerous reports of large tightly packed schools of some sort of smaller (forage fish-sized) fish near the beachline. I have half a dozen reports of these surface-swimming mystery fish, which hold their clear dorsal fins out of the water when nervously balled up. It could be an exotic (species), though it also sounds a bit like some species of herring, of which there quite a few types.
Holgate is looking mighty fine, buggying-wise. The erosion factor remains in play but once the high tide pulls out it’s an easy drive down. When first driving on beach, the rideable beach sorta splits during lower tides. There is a trough beginning near the “signs.” It’s best to stay west of it, even though you can eventually drive east of it as the tide drops. The spooky part is when the water coming out of the trough erodes an east-west cutaway on the trough’s south end. It’s hard to see the drop-off as you’re driving north to go off the beach. It got very steep late yesterday. I swerved right before doing a headfirst three-foot plunge. It wouldn’t have been overly bad as slow as I was driving but someone moving faster (even the allowed 20 mph) could have been kissing the windshield at the bottom of the downslide. Odd observation: An entire group of beachwalkers placed all their shoes in a line right in one of the tire ruts as you drive on the beach. I, along with some other drivers, added some flatness to the row of shoes.
Some cocktail blues started showing today, near both inlets.