If this is not a reason as to why we like to leave early, then nothing I can say is. Rounding the hook in complete darkness, I had trouble in finding bunker, however we all were looking and located a few schools down the beach. With the sunrise at least a half hour away, my crew were all hooked into very nice size stripers. By time the first boat came by us, they had boated their limit of stripers and playing catch and release. In no time, the boats fishing this school of bait chased the bass and it was time to move. We needed to catch fish and when you can do this early it really makes the day. To bad they missed out on Tuesday’s trip. Again I headed south only to find a dead sea, not even any marks. A move north found some surface action and the guys were hooked into decent size blues that were chasing sardines. This was run and gun fishing. Chris and Bob changed over to poppers,Ed,Frank,and Jack stayed with bait. The blues wanted those poppers as every cast was getting bit. Then Bob hooked into a large fish, and after a nice battle, I netted a striper that weighed 32lbs. Chris caught the next bass, a nice 28lber that hit a rooster fish popper. A few more bass follows, 1 that pulled the hook and that was it on the bass, but to catch those bass in 65′ of water on the surface is special. This day started out great, had a little lull then broke wide open with these blues. I mentioned to Chris, more then once that on Tuesdays trip we had this type of action, but only it was all bass. If these trips could all be like this, great action, plenty of laughs, good weather, real good company.
I dont know how many Forces there are but I had plenty on my boat today, Starting with the King Force, then ED, Greg and FU RANDY. The seas were calm and I expected good things given that the fish must be hungary. A few stops here and there and no fish, some real good marks, but nothing to show from them, not even a nervous bait. I hate to say this but the King was due for a off trip, you just can’t catch them like he does all the time. Started north in hopes of finding anything, if not fluke would be the target. Passing by the rocks, a few birds were working and as we got closer, I could see the swirls. Bait in the water. Some of the guys had blues, but the King managed to boat a nice bass on his custom striper rod that has 2- 40 lbers notches in the butt so far.Randy on his toys are us rod hooked a big fish that was no match for equipment and broke free. At least we got some action and then it got better, giant blues were blowing up and willing to eat the bunker, no surprise. Ed set the hook on what appeared to be a very large fish and was taking out line, and had requested me to go after this fish. With the lines cleared and after a short battle, it was clear that this “Rock” was not going to be moved and Erwin Jr. was able to free his line form the snag. I think we all had a good time chasing the fast moving school of blues. These fish weighed up to 16lbs. and provided us with a lot of action, there had to be more bass around but the blues were to aggressive. King Force keeps his striper record intact, 4 trips, bass boated on every trip. They all fished hard, it just was not a striper day for us. The bite was south this morning, but a good time was had between the crew and myself. To bad Randy was not out on Tuesday evening, but thats a story for another day…………….
With my eyes closed I can still see the stripers blasting the bait from last evening. As we gathered bait and had a slight west wind, I could not wait to get down the beach. Mike had mentioned that he is a black cloud when it comes to fishing.Going across the bay the wind changed to hard south east, and when I came around the hook found it in my face and 3-4 footers!! I said to myself, he is a black cloud! Started fishing the same spot where “KING FORCE” caught the first of his 2 cows and found no marks and no fish. A move to the deep and we had some blues chewing on the bunker. A phone call form another captain made me move back north to a hot bunker school. Of course with my black cloud on board by time we got back up there in a tough following sea it was over. Things were not looking good at this point. I turned around and went right to the spot where we had the blues, figured we needed to catch something. WRONG!! Made a little move and Bill Haskell got bit and he put the first bass in the boat!! Then the “Black Cloud” got bit and Mike set the hook and in short time I slipped the net over a nice stripe bass. Bill caught another and Joe had his bait get chased right to the boat, however he had the wrong rod in his hand and did not get a chance to set the hook. Given the sea conditions these guys did a great job fishing the live bait , we did manage a few bass and I hope we erased Mike’s “Black Cloud”.
After cancelling yesterday’s trip due to the lack of fish and not getting any good reports, I let the evening trip decide. Mistake number 1!! They did not want to gamble and I can understand that, but this is fishing. So few of my friends and my son went out and I was going to prospect in hopes of finding some bass. I headed to NY waters, mistake number 2! and was able to find some fish and alot of bird action even though I knew there was a huge school of bunker down the beach and with the west wind figured it would only be a matter of time until the bass found them. Then I got a phone call telling me that there appears to be fish on this school. Got to love the Yamaha 250’s, made there in just a few minutes. Bunker everywhere, bass everywhere and willing to eat, 30 -40lber’s. Every bait got bit, I used My favorite pencil popper again, action was unbelievable. Keith Force with a brand new rod, caught this best bass to date at42lbs, Erwin Jr, Brian Schmitt had numerous fish over 35 lbs! I cannot describe the action and what happens when these fish want your bunker right next to the boat. I am just happy that these GREAT game fish came back for us to have another chance at catching them. This never ever gets old!!!!!!!!
Knowning that these men were coming from Philly, Pa., I really wanted them to get on the bass. My intel from saturday was not good, a real slow pick and it seems that the fish moved even further south, I felt like there should be a few fish in the areas that have been good to me. The forcasted 5-10 SW, was actually 15-20 SE and made for a rought ride south. Got to grounds before the sun came up and could not mark anything. Put the live bunker out and started drifting. We could just tell that this was not going to work, a few moves deep, a few moves over structure and nothing. We then decided to go fluking where at least there was action. Adam caught the money fluke at 4lbs. Hope these fish find there way north for me and everyone else…………..
We started out int he dark in very calm conditons, exact opposite from last night. The ride south confirmed my feelings that last night storms sucked the life out of Ocean. A few moves here and there and finally a crashing bite and hook up. 30lber put in the boat, another search and another nice fish hooked and caught that was 32lbs. Then a switch in tatics and a huge 38lb bass jumped on the bait, Steve hooked it and Vinnny faught it. Again weighed, photograghed and released. Reports of very good fishing and large schools of bait south of Manasquan explains that lack of life in our area. 3 bass total, not too many years ago that would have been a killer trip, now I am spoiled.
Heading into a hard southeast swell made for slow going. Once on the grounds you can just tell that there was not much going on. A few moves here and there produced nothing. The scattered schools of bunker had way too many boats working them for my liking. So we just hung around until the boat traffic backed off. Then we got into them hard for a hour. Every bait was getting hit. Once I marked them on my screen, I started my carpet bombing technique and turned them on. Tommy hooked a few before he got into his best bass so far at 42 lbs, which was weighed, a few pics and released. You cannot believe the hit on a live bunker, you have to see it to believe it.
Wating at the dock, I received a phone call stating that there was a large school of bunker off the beach near Deal. On the way south Pat called me again stating that there looks like “explosions” in that school. Nearing the school all I could say was “HOLY #%@^”!!! I never ever in 40 years of fishing seen anything like this. There were jumbo stripers crashing bunkers in every direction. It looked like had grenades going off in the water. My 3 fisherman hooked up immediatley with 30 – 40 lb fish. Good timing being that I had my video camara. Charles Geyer had 10 bass between 32 and 38 lbs. Anthony Sickenger hooked a huge bass that pulled the scale down to 44lbs!! Total bass that evening was 35 – 40 fish, all cows. Even I hooked 6 giants, all on my favorite pencil popper, topped off by a 40 lbers as well.
After getting berated once for bringing bananas on my boat there was no way he would bring them again right? Stopped on the spot where we had fish all week long early and no fish. Headed to where I left them biting yesterday, nothing. I checked his lunch bag, no bananas. Thats when my mate found them hidden in the dry storage, over they went!! In less then 2 minutes we had a big bass on, then another, like a switch was flipped. Lucky for Sal that Dean found that fruit because Sal ended up with a 41 and 37 lb bass, among many other fish in the 30’s. Crazy fishing in a huge saturday fleet. We left the bass biting to try some fluking and found the fluking to be incredible, they were hitting everything you put down. 4 guys accounted for almost 150 fluke with not 1 making the size limit!!! This was another action packed trip with these super sized stripers, hope this never ends………….
Friday the 13th turned out to be a very good trip for the crew, Keith, Frank, Ed, Rodney, and Chris. We found real good action early and had boated a bunch of nice size bass before the sun slowed the action. Then thats when it got really exciting. Stopping on a few bunker schools and finding only big blues, it was only a matter of time before the bass would show. Then the cows trapped some bait in the wash and we had them attack out baits. All big fish, crushing the bait on the surface. Seeing these bass taking the bait and hearing the bite is unbelievable. Many fish over 30 lbs with Chris and Rodney taking fish to 35lbs. This is in my opinion the best type of bass fishing you can find anywhere.