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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 6-25-18


The Down Deep Bull had a good week of fluking, Capt. Mario from the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b> said. That’s one of the company’s two boats, and no huge fluke were hooked, but good numbers of keepers were. Open-boat trips are fluking at 6 a.m. daily and 2 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. If you fluke aboard, you’re eligible to win a custom rod that will be awarded to the customer with the year’s biggest fluke, an annual prize. The other boat, the Down Deep, was going to begin porgy fishing today on open trips at 6 a.m. daily. Those trips fished for sea bass until sea bass season closed Saturday. Mario expects a great season of porgy fishing like last year. Charters are available for up to 15 passengers, and both boats feature full galleys and large cockpits for comfort.

Boat traffic was heavy, and water clarity wasn’t ideal, and the anglers worked hard for fluke Sunday with <b>Manicsportfishing</b>, Manic’s Facebook page said. They put in overtime and landed eight keepers and some bluefish, along with throwback fluke. On a fluke trip Friday, some of the anglers limited out, and all anglers “left with a bag and a smile,” the page said. A trip Thursday tried for striped bass, knowing that wasn’t going to be easy. None showed up, after the trip livelined and chunked bunker and trolled. The anglers fought large bluefish a while that were run into. Tough fishing but a great time, the page said. Any time on the water with these anglers is a good time.

A trip Saturday for fluke was canceled because of weather, Capt. Frank from the <b>Vitamin Sea</b> wrote in an email. East wind with outgoing tide would’ve created tough conditions. Capt. T.J. ran a fluke trip aboard Sunday, and boat traffic and ship traffic made a tough situation tougher. The water was still brown. Only five keepers were reeled in, among throwbacks. “Short fluke were available but keepers were hard to come by,” he wrote. If anglers can fish weekdays, boat traffic is lighter. That can help sometimes, including because of longer drifts of the boat that can be made. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing. Open trips for fluke will run Tuesday morning, Wednesday afternoon and Thursday and Friday mornings. Telephone to reserve.


<b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b> fluked yesterday, and the fishing wasn’t great, but picked away at a few keepers and shorts, Capt. Joe said. He’s gearing up for porgy fishing, after sea bass season closed Saturday. A friend was hooking porgies fairly well. Trips might mix fishing for fluke and porgies, and also sea bass, when sea bass season opens with a two-fish limit in July. Sour Kraut will also fish offshore for tuna and maybe sharks. Offshore fishing was weathered out in past days. A weather window might open toward the end of the week. The Mako Mania tournament was held this weekend, and many competitors seemed to cut trips short because of seas. Sour Kraut had been striped bass fishing, and striper fishing seemed finished locally. Anglers Joe knew who still caught stripers only nabbed a few small at night. <b>***Update, Tuesday, 6/26:***</b> Stripers to 46 pounds were pasted on the ocean last evening aboard, Joe wrote in an email. “Just when you thought it was over …,” he said.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

A 10-pound 9-ounce fluke was socked on Saturday afternoon’s trip on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. That was biggest so far this year aboard, and a couple of 8’s were nailed this season on the vessel. Fluking on the boat, on Raritan and Sandy Hook bays, was up and down, some days fishing better than others. Conditions were a factor. Mostly throwbacks bit, of course, but some keepers did. Forecasts for rough weather caused only a handful of anglers to join Saturday’s trips, but weather was beautiful on the water, and fishing conditions were good. Trips had been fishing Raritan Bay, but fished Sandy Hook Bay late in the week, though the 10-pounder was from Raritan Bay. Tom just found the fishing better on Sandy Hook Bay, or Raritan’s fluking slower, late in the week, and Sandy Hook Bay generally fishes better in easterly weather. Good crowds joined Sunday’s trips, and Tom returned to fishing Raritan Bay, after conditions fell apart on Sandy Hook Bay. Pretty much all customers are at least catching throwbacks. Not all landed throwbacks on Sunday, because conditions fell apart. The most important thing is that the trips are fluking every day, and the crew is trying to make the angling fun for everybody. Trips are sailing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily. <b>***Update, Wednesday, 6/27:***</b> Forecasts are calling for some weather tomorrow, but also 85 degrees, and the boat will fish, Tom said. Wind is supposed to be from south, and trips can fish parts of the bay that help the boat keep sheltered from that.

Fishing slugged away at fluke Friday on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. A couple of good-sized came in, including the 5-pound 12-ounce pool-winner. Rough weather was expected, but only a breeze blew, and the fish still bit. Trips are fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily. Tickets are available to watch the Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks aboard. Book before it’s too late.


Seas were rough, but an individual-reservation trip for sea bass fished Friday, the final day of the season for the fish, with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b> on the ocean, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email. A full boat fished, and all the anglers bagged plenty, and some limited out and caught more, keeping no more than their quotas. Individual-reservation trips will fish for cod offshore at 2 a.m. Wednesday and July 11. June and July fished best for cod for Last Lady last year. The boat is one of the only that fishes for cod from New Jersey in summer each year. Fish for cod in shorts! Individual-reservation trips are fishing inshore every Tuesday. Those had been fishing for sea bass. Kids under 12 sail free on the Tuesday trips, limited to one per adult host.


Shark River’s fluke fishing was good, holding steady, Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> wrote in an email. The shop’s rental boats averaged two to four keepers and many throwbacks. Ed Rosenberg from Roxborough, Pa., heaved a 6-pound 8-ounce fluke from the river. Jesse Thomas from Wall landed four legal-sized to a 4-pound 8-ouncer, keeping no more than a limit of three. Now that sea bass season closed, “we will see how good (the ocean’s) fluking is …,” he wrote. Surf-fishing was hot for small striped bass. Clams and sand fleas were best baits. “Some nice kingfish,” he wrote, were reported beached at Asbury Park on sandworms. 

Not so fast. Maybe you thought striped bass fishing was ending. But <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b> limited out on stripers to 51 pounds last evening on the ocean, Capt. Pete wrote in a text.  Trips aboard mostly began to fluke fish on the ocean, and a trip for that picked away on the fish, including some limits, on Friday, he said in a previous phone call. None of the fluke was huge, or they weighed up to 4 or 5 pounds. Fishing was weathered out Saturday aboard. A trip Sunday for fluke met a ground swell leftover from the weather, making the fishing a little tough. Fluking aboard will include annual Bucktailing Seminars that teach bucktailing for big ones in a non-threatening environment. Pete will decide soon when those will begin. Newbies learn the skill, and veterans hone the angling. Don’t have enough anglers for a charter? Book an individual spot with a charter who wants more anglers. Sign up for the email blast on <a href="" target="_blank">Parker Pete’s website</a> to be kept informed about the spaces. <b>***Update, Monday, 6/25:***</b> Striper fishing was full-out on the trip last evening, Pete said in a phone call this morning. All the bass weighed 35 to 40 pounds, except the pool-winner weighed 52. He’s going to offer Magic Hour Trips for stripers in evenings this week only. Last chance for monster stripers, he said, and spaces are available. Give him a call. He told the anglers on last evening’s trip that they might have to switch to fluke. But they wanted to try for stripers. These bass are either from Chesapeake Bay or Raritan Bay, he said, apparently a last shot that spawned and returned to the ocean. They had sea lice on them.

Capt. Mike from <b>Celtic Stoirm Charters</b> worked the deck on another boat Sunday that fished for fluke on the ocean, he said. But the angling fought a big ground swell from rough weather the previous day, and the water temperature had dropped to 63 degrees. That’s frigid for fluking, and the angling was slow. The trip left and returned in the fog.

Bluefish 8 to 15 pounds, big ones, gave up a good pick late on Sunday’s trip on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Earlier in the trip, smaller blues were skittish, but a few were pitched aboard. Today’s fishing was slow, and only a few smaller blues and big porgies were axed. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Fishing and sunset cruises are sailing 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

On the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, Thursday’s trip caught 3- to 5-pound bluefish at first, and fishing for them just kept getting better, an email said from the party boat. At mid-morning, big blues moved in. Fishing for the 8- to 4-pounders was good the second half of the trip. Was a fantastic day in great weather.  But wind picked up and caused the afternoon trip to stay docked. On Friday, bluefishing was a little slower. Some were picked on every drift, and the fish were hooked along bottom. Blues never erupted along the water surface like on previous days.  On Saturday, bluefishing was slow on the first half of the trip. During the second half, the boat put in extra time to search for blues, and that paid off. Bigger blues to 12 pounds were hooked. Trips are fishing 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.


When offshore fishing had the weather to sail, yellowfin tuna were trolled from Toms to Carteret canyons on spreader bays, Joe Shutes and chains, the usual stuff, said Eric from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. Green seemed the hot color. A few bigeye tuna also bit, and a few blue marlin caught began to be reported from the area. Bluefin tuna swam along the 30-fathom line, and the farther the north, the bigger. None was huge, but some 100- to 200-pounders were taken. Ling and winter flounder bit at the Mudhole. Fluke fishing was picky on the ocean. A few hit at Axel Carlson and Sea Girt reefs. No great shakes, but some could be caught. Fluking was better on Manasquan River, and Treasure Island to Route 35 Bridge fished best for them. Bluefish popped up in the river in evenings and mornings. A few small striped bass bit at night in the river.

The anglers battled breezy weather this morning, causing the <b>Jamaica II</b> to drift fast, but they picked keeper fluke at every area fished, a report said on the party boat’s Facebook page.  Some of the anglers limited out, a couple landed more, keeping no more than a legal number, and some just missed. Only a 7-pound 1-ounce fluke is in the lead for the monthly pool. That’s a beat-able fish, and the winning angler is awarded a free year of trips aboard.  Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays and 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

Decent fluke fishing was scooped from the ocean Thursday on the <b>Gambler</b> on both the morning and afternoon trips, a report said on the party boat’s website. Pretty good action with keepers and shorts, it said, and an angler on the afternoon trip limited out and won the pool with a 4.2-pounder. Keepers weighed up to about 4 on both trips. On Friday, choppy seas made fluking tough, but some sea bass bit. That was the final day of sea bass season. A trip Thursday night fished great for ling of mixed sizes to 4 pounds. Squid swarmed all around, and anglers could catch a mess of them, too. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. Wreck-fishing trips are sailing 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. every Thursday, and trips for bluefish, sea bass, ling or whatever bites are running Fridays and Saturdays during those hours. Shark in the Dark Trips will begin this weekend that fish every Sunday from 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. Reservations are required for the sharking.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Crabs finally began to be trapped from the dock Thursday, a report said on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Customers trapped up to a dozen good-sized keepers apiece. A couple of overnight pots also caught a bunch. A few small bluefish were hooked from the dock along bottom on cut baits recently. Surf anglers began to fish at first and last lights, a summer pattern. But they also began to have more interest in nighttime sharking. Some of the sharks were beached, and be able to identify the species, because many sharks in the surf are required to be released. Peruvian smelts, an old, favorite bait for big fluke, were added to  baits stocked at the store. 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 boat and jet-ski rentals.

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

Two trips fought aboard bluefish 2 to 4 pounds not far from port Saturday and Sunday on jigs, said Capt. Ted from the <b>Super Chic</b>. Weather caused seas to be unfit for fluke fishing on the ocean on the trips. Seas were bumpy during Saturday’s bluefishing, but the anglers were hardy. More bluefishing and some tuna fishing is scheduled for later in the week. A couple of spots are left for an open-boat tuna trip that Ted just scheduled for July 6 to 7. He’ll probably schedule more of the trips for July. Weather was too rough for boats to fish for tuna in past days. Some might’ve resumed the offshore trips Sunday. A roll remained on the ocean, and weather was foggy, but wind no longer blew strongly that day.

Northeast wind turned off fluke and sea bass fishing a bit Friday and Saturday, a report said on the party boat <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b>’s website. Better weather is expected to improve fishing this week. The ocean, where the boat fishes, is warming slowly after the cool spring. But the warming water is expected to amp up catches, too. The boat had been fishing for fluke and sea bass, until sea bass closed beginning Saturday. Now trips are fluking, until two sea bass per angler can be kept beginning in July. Then trips will fish for both again. Trips are fishing 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. daily. Sunset cruises are departing at 7 p.m. daily, returning a little after sunset. A cruise will watch fireworks on Fourth of July off Seaside Heights on the ocean.

<b>Forked River</b>

A trip two Saturdays ago bagged a 90-inch mako shark and released a small great white shark and a blue shark inshore with <b>Tuna-Tic Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Mike said. Then the trip landed a couple of bigeye tuna and a couple of yellowfin tuna offshore at the canyons. Fishing like this that was scheduled was weathered-out since on the boat. Mike’s just waiting for the weather, and has trips that want to go.


Things were the same, and trips are fishing for summer flounder on the ocean on the <b>Stray Cat</b>, Capt. Mike said. Open-boat trips are available for that this Thursday and Sunday. An open tuna trip will sail on July 15.

<b>Cape May</b>

An open-boat trip was going to fish for summer flounder today aboard, and the fish are snapping, <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b>’s Facebook page said. A photo on the page showed more than a dozen landed aboard a trip recently. The boat just recently began fishing for the fluke for the season on open trips and charters on the ocean.

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