Today’s forecast calls for fishing! At least that’s what we all wanted to hear after the week-long stretch of rain, then wind, finally ceased, and fishing is what many of us found time to do. Flounder, striped bass, bluefish, drum fish, and sea bass, which became legal May 17, gave us options of what we wanted to fish for.
Many wondered how fishing would be after the storm left. Well, early returns say that the fish are still around and the only thing we lost was a week of fishing opportunities. It's now time to recoup the chances of that week. Let’s see how things are going.
The Avalon Lady, like all the local boats, was finally able to get out on Friday after spending too much time at the dock. There was less wind, although some fog rolled in, but Capt. Brandon was able to get out with his patrons and do some fishing.
That trip saw Austin with a limit, while Dave was the pool winner. It wasn’t the best conditions but just being able to get out was well worth it for everyone.
Saturday started foggy, then saw some rain roll in. The bite was an early one but tailed off as the day progressed. Regardless, the morning provided 14 keeper flounder.
Anglers Vince and Dave caught their limits. Amongst those that Dave caught was a 6.2-pound, pool-winning fish. It was the biggest of the spring so far and took over first place on the boat's leaderboard.
Sunday dawned foggy, but started to clear around 10 a.m. The action saw plenty of shorts caught, as well as eight keepers. For the record, I was the pool winner, with a 21-inch, 3-pound fish. It was good to get a trip in with my son before he headed back to his duty station, as well as to see some of the other anglers aboard the boat that I know.
The Avalon Lady sails a four-hour trip every morning, except Tuesday, leaving the dock at 8 a.m.
The Miss Avalon started the sea bass season in good style. The anglers aboard caught plenty of fish and went home with plenty of filets in their coolers. Jerry Rau was one of the anglers who got out and he reported a good day for himself, as well as everyone on the boat. He said that the mates were busy cleaning fish all the way back to the dock.
The Sailor’s Delight was out in the early Sunday morning fog and the flounder didn’t seem to mind. The highlight of the trip was the two flounder that Rich J. landed, as both fish measured in at 21 inches.
The Sea Star III was limited, as was everyone, by the weather recently. The weather led to some slow flounder fishing, but they did manage some keepers. The highlight was the pool-winning flounder that Linda Morgan caught. She took home the money with her 3.3-pound fish caught during the Sunday trip.
Capt. Chuck was also able to start fishing for drum fish recently. Earl and John got the season going, as they both landed big drum fish. The Sea Star III added to their resume by fishing for sea bass on opening day. They had a busy day, as the action was good, and many keepers were caught.
The Miss Chris headed out on their first trip of the drum fish season. They had a great night on the water, they heard some drums and they also brought some over the rail. They are sailing four-hour trips for sea bass during the day, then head out during the late afternoon for some night-time drum fishing trips. Check out their schedule online and set up a trip.
Boulevard Bait and Tackle was getting busy again, as anglers were checking in. The weather cleared, anglers got out, and catches resulted.
First, Ted reported that he caught a nice striper from the surf, while another angler sent a picture of himself with a big bluefish caught in the waters behind Sea Isle.
A group of anglers checked in on Sunday to show their nice catch of flounder. On Wednesday, two nice striped bass were caught from the local surf. Also, the flounder bite was good that day for Joey G. who stopped in with two keepers. The largest was 24.5 inches and weighed 4.2 pounds.
Thursday saw “Prostaff Paulie” get off the schneid as he landed a nice, big striper. It was larger than 38 inches, so he released it to breed another day. The big fish fell for a glob of clam.
Sea Isle Bait and Tackle had a successful flounder tournament recently, during which the largest flounder, and bluefish, topped the 5-pound mark. Many more flounder were in the 3- to 4-pound range. The conditions weren’t perfect, but the anglers put their time in, and the effort paid off.
Cape May Bait and Tackle reported that striped bass were being caught from the surf on both the bay and ocean sides. Clams and bunker chunks both worked well.
Farther out in the bay, some drum fish were being caught on clams. The rock piles around the Delaware Bay jetties are giving up weakfish if you throw bloodworms at them.
Finally, Joey B. caught a nice keeper flounder while he was out fishing on Sunday. Grassy Sound Marina saw plenty of action recently, as Eric, Aidan, and Sean pulled double duty. First, the trio returned with some keeper flounder after a trip to Turtle Creek. The fish hit on Gulp at the top of the tide. Then, while doing some after-hours fishing, they pulled in some large striped bass. No word on where those were caught.
Other quality flounder catches went to Mike Allen, who brought back a 23.5-inch fish that hit New Penny Gulp at the top of the tide. After the tide went out, Chris caught a 22-inch fish near the marina. That fish also hit Gulp.
Another good outing was had by Vinnie, who went out on Sunday and landed three keeper flounder for his efforts. Finally, 13-year-old Travis Snyder and Capt. Dave took a short trip to Turtle Creek. They caught three keepers on pink curly tails during the outgoing tide.
It’s a busy time here at the Cape, as you have many species of fish to target. Grab your pole, get out, and get involved. Take care and I’ll see you around.