Daily Fishing and Outdoor Report
Sunday, October 24, 2010:
How about Holgate? After years of actually not faring so well in the Classic, the far south end is kicking double-B butt --– bass and blues. John Bonner, Tuckerton, joined trophy bass takers Ray Sullivan’s (56.44) and (Courtland Foos) 47.63 by hauling in a weekend 40.44. John was using bunker chunks.
To get a read on just how active Holgate has been in Classic 2010, go to the website http://www.visitlbiregion.com/fish/. Above the Classic logo, look for a small blue print message “Click here to view catch data!” When in there, you’ll see every fish caught. Up near the top, click on the word “Location.” That arranges all fish by where they were caught. Cursor down to “Holgate” and check out the showing of fish from the South End.
By the by, if you really want to study every fish caught so far in the Classic, you can click on any of those column heads, i.e. “Type,” “Weight,” “Bait,” etc. You’ll see all caught fish arranged per the column category.
Overall, it was far from a frenzied hooking weekend. It was slow to deplorably slow for fall. And I was among those falling fall short. Still, some fish were taken and, what’s more, we’re now likely in for some serious hooking, beginning tomorrow through Wednesday. Brisk to howling south winds will stir the surf just the way we like it.
By the by, I was describing Ray S.’s mega-bass in yesterday’s blog and somehow forgot to tell one of the pivotal aspects of his fighting of the fish. When the near-57-pounder made a rapid run back toward the beach, it also began to muscle toward the groin near to Ray. That bass strategy has worked all too often. However, unlike ill-advised efforts by other anglers to walk the bass over a groin (by trying to hold the rod high in the air to get the lines over the rocks), Ray did something of an end around by bolting downbeach of the jetty, until the he had enough angle to pull the fish away from the rocks. Fortuitously, the fish obliged, which isn’t always the case. It was the winning move on Ray’s part. He then essentially walked back toward the fish, keeping pressure on the fish while reeling in line. In the end, he ended up almost exactly where he first hooked it.
If ever there was a year when even a 56.44 can be beaten, it’s this year. Of course, Ray and Courtland and John B. are among those fishing on. Makes for a Classic battle.
Here’s a pro report form Captain Jack. Please note, I’ll publish charter and headboat reports just as they’re emailed. Email to email@example.com.
Another week of excellent fall fishing in our area. Beautiful weather, bass into the 20's and bluefish up to 18 pounds, endless streams of bait moving down the coast. And the main body of stripers hasn't even arrived yet! If the weather cooperates, it's going to be a fall to remember.
We mixed it up a bit on trips during the first part of the week, spending part of the time trolling along the state park and part of the time drifting live bait in the inlet and back bay. While we did find a couple of bass on the troll, the big story was bluefish with some real jumbos prowling the beachfront last week. In fact, on Wednesday's trip the smallest blue to come over the side was in the 12 pound class and several tipped the scales at 18+ pounds. Trolling Maja spoons and Stretch plugs did most of the damage as the fish weren't schooled up enough to jig for them quite yet.
As usual for October, drifting live spot in the inlet area produced most of the bass this week with about a 50/50 mix of keepers and shorts. It's been a bit quiet in the back channels so far, but I'd expect that to change this week with the water temps finally dropping into the 50's and the full moon behind us. Things did slow down a bit on yesterday's trip. Not too sure whether it was the full moon and crystal clear night, the acres and acres of large herring that were right outside the inlet the past few days, or some combination of the two. Whatever it was, the bass around the inlet were apparently not in a feeding mood yesterday so we switched over to playing mostly catch and release with the blackfish that are so abundant on the rocks right now. We'll be back to bass tomorrow.
So the bait pens are full, the main body of fish is on it's way down to us, and the weather has been looking promising. It's going to be a great fall. I do still have a couple of dates open the week of November 15th, so now's the time to get that final trip of 2010 scheduled.
Capt. Jack Shea "Rambunctious" Barnegat Bay Fishing Charters www.BarnegatBayFishing.com