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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 10-8-18


Eeling for striped bass was weathered out Friday on the <b>Vitamin Sea</b>, Capt. Frank wrote in an email. The fishing was better on Saturday than Sunday, and is sporadic. “… the fish seem to come in 2’s,” he wrote. When the bite comes, anglers need to capitalize. You only get so many bites in a day. The bass are averaging 12 to 20 pounds, and bluefish are mixed in. Eeling is the way to catch for now, and jigging will be the way soon. Book charters for stripers or blackfish for later this season now, and get the date you want. Apply for a bonus tag to bag an extra striper. The next open-boat trips will fish for stripers at 6 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Telephone to reserve.

Fishing for striped bass Sunday was certainly not the bite like on the previous day with <b>Manicsportfishing</b>, Manic’s Facebook page said. But Saturday was amazing. Trips are eeling the bass at the mouth of Hudson River. A sea bass trip was supposed to fish aboard today, opening day of sea bass season.

With the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, striped bass fishing was good, Capt. Mario said. The fish to 25 pounds were socked on eels aboard, and the fall run of stripers looks like it’ll be good. Open-boat trips are fishing for stripers at 6 a.m. daily and 1 p.m. Saturdays. Open trips for sea bass were going to begin today, opening day of sea bass season, running at 6 a.m. daily on Down Deep’s other boat. Charters for up to 15 passengers are available.


<b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b> will bottom-fish for sea bass, porgies and blackfish, now that sea bass season opened today, Capt. Joe said. He hopes triggerfish are still in, so his bottom trips can continue fishing for them, too. Trips aboard were already running for porgies, blackfish and triggers. He did maintenance on the boat this weekend, and knew nobody who sailed for the angling during the weekend in sloppy seas. He heard that eeling for striped bass slowed in New York Harbor, maybe because of boat traffic. That was unconfirmed. He avoided that angling because of traffic. False albacore seemed to swarm all over the ocean inshore. Fun to fight. Mahi mahi were the only good catches he heard about from offshore. They were migrating out, thinning out, from inshore.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

Capt. Tom from the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b> had planned to fish between the channels today, opening day of sea bass season, because some sea bass swam there, he said. Beginning today, the boat was slated to fish for sea bass, porgies and blackfish, after focusing on porgies until now. But seas were too rough to fish the channels, so this morning’s trip was fishing closer in, when he gave this report in a phone call on the outing. The anglers were picking porgies, while the boat rolled around a little. Anglers who could deal with current were catching. Porgy fishing dealt with current from the new moon in past days. Sometimes that made the fishing tough. Sometimes the angling was better. Before the current, some of the trips fished great. Trips are fishing for sea bass, porgies and blackfish 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily through Sunday. Beginning next Monday, the trips will run 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. One trip daily begins around that date each year, because the fish begin migrating farther from port. That schedule enables the boat to reach them.

On the <b>Fishermen</b>, fishing was excellent from the start Saturday, a report said on the party boat’s website. Loads of porgies and a few winter flounder, bluefish, blowfish and the season’s first striped bass were pumped in. Sea bass are able to be kept beginning today, opening day of sea bass season, and trips are bottom-fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.


An individual-reservation trip was full that was going to sail for sea bass on this opening day of sea bass season with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email beforehand. Individual-reservation trips will fish for sea bass Oct. 21, big porgies, big sea bass, ling and cod offshore Oct. 28 and blackfish Nov. 16. The bag limit will be increased to five blackfish that day from the current limit of one. Spaces are available for the trips. Individual-reservation trips for striped bass will be scheduled when the migration is closer. Bluefish are in, and a few dates are available for charters, including for blues. <b>***Update, Monday, 10/8:***</b> Seas were rough on today’s trip, though that was not forecasted, Ralph wrote in an email. “Those who fished,” he wrote, limited out on sea bass or nearly limited. Big sea bass were whacked. Porgies and a few triggerfish were also slapped aboard. If you want sea bass, book now. Book charters for them, cod, striped bass or blackfish for this fall. Last Lady will fish into winter as long as fish bite.


A trip looked for tuna 40, 50 and 60 miles from shore yesterday on the <b>Katie H</b>, Capt. Mike said. He tested each of those distances, and lots of mahi mahi were crushed aboard. But only one small bluefin tuna was caught, and it was released. Plenty of mahi filled the waters, and lots of false albacore did. But tuna were scarce, and he’s probably going to switch to bottom-fishing for sea bass, cod, ling or other catches, now that sea bass season opened today. Tuna currently swam far offshore, 130 miles out, he heard. On the trip, the water was blue and clear, looking beautiful, and held Sargassum and a bunch of life, including the mahi and albies. Much bait was marked, and Mike thought squid were probably abundant. Draggers worked the area. The boat’s temperature gauge broke, but Mike thought the water was in the mid-70 degrees.

The boat was splashed back in the water after new engines were installed, and Capt. Mike from <b>Celtic Stoirm Charters</b> did finishing touches of maintenance this weekend, he said. Sea bass fishing will sail, including this coming weekend, now that sea bass season opened. Striped bass trips are being booked for later this fall. All charter boats that he knew about were docked this weekend at Belmar.

After super bluefishing aboard last week, the angling was okay Friday on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Saturday’s trip scored decent action on 3- to 8-pounders from time to time. A few big blues were mixed in, and a 20-pounder won the pool. On Saturday night’s trip, bluefishing was decent for 3- to 6-pounders and a few 15- to 16-pounders. A couple of handfuls of bonito to 5 pounds were landed. The trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily and 7:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. Saturdays, except when tuna trips are running. See the <a href="" target="_blank">tuna schedule</a> online. A tuna trip was slated for today to Tuesday.


<b>***Update, Wednesday, 10/10:***</b> Killer fishing Monday and Tuesday on the <b>Jamaica II</b>, an email said from the party boat. Big sea bass filled coolers, and hefty porgies were iced. Limits of both were common. Triggerfish to 5 pounds and almaco jacks were pitched aboard. Bottom-fishing couldn’t get much better. A 100-pound bluefin tuna jumped around the boat throughout one of the trips. Marathon trips are fishing 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Beginning Oct. 20, 14-hour trips will sail every Saturday and Sunday. A few anglers and their catches included: Mac Dubois, Philly, limits of sea bass to 4 pounds and porgies to 3 pounds and five triggerfish; Mario Contero, Jackson, limits of sea bass to 5 pounds and porgies; and Bob Plasket, Medford, limits of sea bass and porgies and four large triggerfish. Erin Johnson from Bristol and Wes Shourt from Manahawkin each limited on both sea bass and porgies, too. See daily reports and see photos on <a href="" target="_blank">Jamaica II’s Facebook page</a>.

Few boaters did the fishing, but a nice little pick of yellowfin tuna seemed happening from the Triple Wrecks to the Texas Tower area, said Eric from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. The fishing seemed pretty hit and miss, but the tuna were mostly hooked on chunks and jigs. Farther offshore at the canyons, mahi mahi fishing was good, and swordfish gave up a steady pick. A couple of longfin tuna and a handful of yellowfin tuna were heard about from the canyons, but only a handful. Closer to shore, good populations of false albacore and bonito could be found. If boaters wanted to troll them, the Mudhole was the place to be. If anglers wanted to cast to them, off Sandy Hook was hottest. The fish were also scattered farther south, but numbers held off Sandy Hook. Cast epoxy jigs and Deadly Dicks caught. S&S Slimfish in chrome worked well for Eric. Bluefish, not big, 2 to 4 pounds, swam everywhere from Manasquan River and Manasquan Inlet to the surf to the Mudhole and beyond. If anglers wanted to troll them, Clark spoons would beat them up. Cut mullet caught the blues well in the surf and picked a few striped bass there. Surf anglers casting small rubber shads, popper lures or Daiwa SP Minnows banked throwback striped bass but definitely an increasing number of keepers. The fish were reported from Point Pleasant Beach to Sandy Hook, and the center seemed Spring Lake to Asbury Park. Blackfishing was hot in Point Pleasant Canal. Many swam there. Plenty held in the inlet, and bottom-fishers picked at the tautog on the ocean. Sea bass fishing should be good on this opening day of sea bass season. The day was a little windy, but a healthy population of the fish seemed in. Porgy catches were consistent. Shrewsbury Rocks and Sandy Hook Reef fished well for numbers of porgies, and Shark River Reef harbored bigger ones. High-low rigs with clams will nab porgies, but porgies also respond well to slow-pitch jigs, and fight well. Slow-pitch jigging has been gaining popularity, and The Reel Seat carries all the jigs, reels, rods and line for the fishing, and can educate anglers about it.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

The <b>Norma-K III</b> is undergoing maintenance, and the crew hopes to resume fishing aboard this week sometime, a report said on the party boat’s website. They had hoped to finish in time for today’s opening of sea bass season.

More mahi madness, a post said about an open-boat trip yesterday with <b>Mushin Sportfishing</b> on Mushin’s Facebook page. The fishing absolutely crushed mahi again, it said, limiting out and releasing additional. After an overnight trip offshore was weathered out Saturday to Sunday, Mushin squeezed in the long day trip Sunday. At first, lots of small yellowfin tuna, rats, and huge false albacore were trolled. Next, the trip moved to the mahi grounds, nailing them to 18 pounds. The trip returned to the tuna grounds and caught more of the rat yellowfins and countless albies. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing offshore. A sea bass trip was weathered out on this opening day of sea bass season.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

From the surf, small bluefish and occasional striped bass were yanked in, like before, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Cut mullet clocked them. From the dock, fishing and crabbing slowed. The Dock Outfitters, located on Barnegat Bay, blocks from the ocean surf, features a bait and tackle shop, a café, a dock for fishing and crabbing, and, in season, boat and jet-ski rentals.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

An offshore trip Saturday to Sunday limited out on mahi mahi, bagged a longfin tuna, a 240-pound swordfish and a 90-pound sword and released two throwback swords on the <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b>, the party boat’s Facebook page said. A white marlin also “(fell) for a livelined squid” on the trip, it said. At first, the trip limited on the mahi on Saturday afternoon. Then the boat was set up on a first drift for the night in 75.2-degree water. The longfin was taken in the first hour of the drift. A throwback sword was released an hour later. On the second drift, the 240-pound sword came in. Soon after, the 90-pounder was bagged. Then another throwback sword was let go. Squid schooled around the boat throughout the night. The white marlin bit soon after daylight. One 30-hour tuna trip is sailing each weekend, and see the <a href="
" target="_blank">tuna schedule</a> online. Striped bass trips will begin on Nov. 2, sailing every Friday through Sunday.


Fishing loaded up on bluefish and false albacore and spotted a cobia yesterday on the <b>Stray Cat</b> on a trip, Capt. Mike said. The cobia was seen along a pot flag but refused to bite. The ocean surface was 73 degrees. Sea bass were far offshore. “They already made the move,” he said, and sea bass fishing was going to be launched aboard today, opening day of sea bass season. Open-boat trips will sail for sea bass every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Telephone to jump aboard. First come, first served, he said, and the trips will be limited to 12 anglers. An open trip will also fish for sea bass this Saturday. Looking ahead, Black Friday is still available for a charter. An open trip for blackfish will fish on Thanksgiving in the morning. Trips will concentrate on striped bass once the striper migration arrives later this fall. When stripers depart, trips will blackfish. Fishing will be wrapped up on about Jan. 10 aboard, going on winter break afterward.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Traveling charters to Montauk will be available through this weekend aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. They fish the migrations of striped bass, blues and false albacore each year from mid-September to mid-October. Some of the trips fished last weekend with Mike Lackman and friend. The fishing was great for false albacore on both Saturday and Sunday. They caught on spinning and fly rods, with Albie Snax on the spinning and small Clousers on the fly rods. After Sunday’s trip, Joe fished with his family, catching more. See the <a href="" target="_blank">traveling charters webpage</a> on Jersey Cape’s website. Traveling charters to the Florida Keys fish each year from Christmas to Easter. After the Montauk trips end, Joe will fish for sea bass and false albacore from Sea Isle. He’ll switch to fishing the migration of stripers and blues sometime in November from Sea Isle, whenever the fish arrive. Fishing for smaller, resident stripers is currently good from Sea Isle on the back bay on the right tides. High tides at dusk are ideal for Joe’s charters. That angling’s usually terrific in late October and early November. Keep up with his fishing on <a href="" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.


Striped bass trips will fish beginning in November sometime with <b>Fins and Feathers Outfitters</b>, Capt. Jim said. He’ll guide salmon fishing this weekend on upstate New York’s Salmon River for guests of his nearby <a href="" target="_blank">lodge</a>. A discount is available for the lodge, but only on Airbnb. The river is full of salmon and probably running at 375 cubic feet per second. The reservoir is low because of dry weather. But he doesn’t think authorities will raise the river, because plenty of salmon are shooting in. Jim is also currently guiding dove hunting in Pennsylvania and turkey hunting in New York. The turkey season is Oct. 1-15. He guides duck and goose hunting from New Jersey and surrounding states later this year. 

<b>Cape May</b>

A trip limited out on mahi mahi and bagged 20 tilefish yesterday with <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Tom said. Jacks, rosefish and white hake were also cranked in. The tiles were goldens to 34 pounds and bluelines to 15 pounds. Another offshore trip a couple of days previously aboard limited on mahi, bagged some tiles and tried daytime swordfishing. A sword was caught quickly on the second drop. Swordfishing is becoming good, so more of the daytime angling for them will take place on the boat now. The daytime fishing, in deep water along bottom for the light-sensitive fish, is popular to the south like in Florida. Tom is pioneering the fishing here. The sword trips can mix in either mahi fishing or tilefishing. Sea bass fishing will get underway with Fishin’ Fever, now that sea bass season opened today. Dates are available for sea bass. Charters and open-boat trips fish aboard.

Capt. George this weekend was getting the <b>Heavy Hitter</b> ready for sea bass fishing beginning today, opening day of sea bass season, he said. He was going to fish for them today, and has a few other trips booked for sea bass. A dock neighbor was going to sail for bluefish today, so George would see if blues were still around. Previously, blues schooled 5-Fathom Bank. Mahi mahi fishing was good along the edges of offshore canyons. A few wahoos swam there. Striped bass charters will sail from a slip at Atlantic City on the boat once the migration arrives later this fall. That’s been closer to good fishing for them in recent years.

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