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New Jersey Inshore Saltwater Fishing Report 6-4-18


Forecasts called for thunderstorms all day Saturday, Capt. Frank from the <b>Vitamin Sea</b> wrote in an email. The weather turned out calmer, but a trip sailed for striped bass instead of fluke that day, because of the prediction. The fishing was okay and bagged a couple of 25-pounders. Strong wind blew Sunday, from east, canceling fishing aboard. Forecasts look better for this week. Charters and open-boat trips are fishing for fluke and striped bass. Spaces are available for open trips this week and next.

Six striped bass were trolled Saturday morning with <b>Manicsportfishing</b> on the ocean on a trip, Capt. Greg said. They weighed up to 25 pounds, if he remembered. The trip began to liveline bunker, but bluefish kept biting. So the trip trolled. The anglers also fought lots of the 3- to 5-pound blues while casting light tackle. Stripers are swimming the ocean from Sandy Hook to Long Branch, and also the ocean off New York. Striper fishing was best in afternoons currently. The angling’s slowing down but catching. Spaces are available for an open-boat trip for fluke Tuesday morning. Manic is into solid action with fluke 10 minutes from the dock. Sea bass fishing is also available.

Plenty of stripers, big ones, are still being tied into with the <b>Down Deep Fleet</b>, Capt. Mario said. Open-boat trips are sailing for a combo of them and fluke daily on the Down Deep Bull, and the fluking is so-so, up and down, on Raritan Bay. The crew is waiting for fluking to turn on in the ocean. In the bay, lots of fluke are throwbacks. Sea bass fishing is excellent on the ocean on daily, open trips on the Down Deep, the company’s other boat. Big ling and winter flounder are mixed in during the sea bassing. Both boats are 40-foot Downeasters with big cockpits, plenty of room and full galleys for comfort. Charters are available for up to 15 passengers.


<b>Sour Kraut Sportfishing</b> did no fishing the past couple of days, Capt. Joe said. But striped bass are still getting boated on the ocean. Friends had difficulty hooking them Saturday morning but limited out on the stripers to 40 pounds that afternoon. Sour Kraut’s been socking big.

<b>Atlantic Highlands</b>

A 9.4-pound fluke was heaved in Saturday on the <b>Fishermen</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website. Scott Ure from North Arlington, a longtime customer, decked the 29-incher, his second-biggest fluke ever. A 5-pounder was next biggest on the trip. A couple of anglers bagged two fluke apiece, and the fishing’s not easy. Got to work. Still, the angling was much better in the morning on the trip than on the previous day. Shorts with keepers mixed in. Plenty of sharks, skates and sea robins. Forecasts called for rough weather that never happened. Trips are sailing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily.

Catches of fluke improved Saturday on the party boat <b>Atlantic Star</b>, Capt. Tom said. A few more keepers were angled than before, and more throwbacks gave up action than previously. No fishing sailed Sunday aboard because of forecasts for strong wind. None of the party boat fleet sailed that day because of wind. On fluke trips aboard, some anglers land a limit of three, or land two. Some only pick up throwbacks or catch no fluke. Bait is probably hooking most fluke. Those who are really working a Spro or bucktail seem to be out-fished by anglers using the Spro or bucktail as a sinker, with a trailer above. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. daily.


Sea bass fishing was drop-and-reel with <b>Fin-Taz-Tic Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Pete wrote in an email. Some big knuckleheads were nailed. The year’s first fluke trip was productive aboard for fluke to heavier than 5 pounds that were pasted. Big striped bass 30 and 40 pounds or heavier could be clocked from the ocean. Good striper fishing could still be had on Raritan Bay.


Great fishing for sea bass was smoked Friday and Saturday with <b>Last Lady Fishing Charters</b>, Capt. Ralph wrote in an email. On Saturday’s trip, some big ling was also slapped aboard. Both trips also released out-of-season blackfish. Four spaces are left for an individual-reservation trip for sea bass June 12. Only two remain for another one of the trips June 17. Striped bass fishing is hit and miss on the ocean. Last Lady is one of the only boats that fishes for cod in summer each year from New Jersey. June and July fished best for them last year aboard, and individual-reservation trips will sail for cod offshore June 27 and June 11. Reserve while spaces are available. Fish for cod in shorts!


Striped bass fishing was slow on the ocean Saturday, said Capt. Mike from <b>Celtic Stoirm Charters</b>. Not a lot of the bass were hooked. Some boats switched to sea bass, once the striper fishing was apparently slow, and caught sea bass well. Nice to have that option this time of year. None of the fleet fished in Sunday’s weather.

Had some good days of striped bass fishing on the ocean, and some slow this past week after last week’s full moon, said Capt. Pete from <b>Parker Pete’s Fishing Charters</b>. The fishing typically needs to settle after the moon. Pete before this weekend’s storm saw some of the most bunker he’s seen on the grounds. Spaces are still available this month for striper fishing, including for Magic Hour Trips that sail in afternoons until dark. Fluke fishing kicks in during July aboard, and fluke began to be hooked on the boat on the ocean, when anglers jigged for bluefish. 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.

Fishing for striped bass was pretty terrible Saturday on the ocean, said Capt. Mike from the <b>Katie H</b>. So the charter aboard opted to switch to sea bass fishing, and the anglers nearly limited out. Pretty good fishing, and Mike was glad to see the abundance of sea bass. More striper trips are coming up. The boat will probably begin tuna fishing in July. If anglers are fortunate, a bluefin tuna fishery will develop inshore this year. When that happens, that’s usually in July and August.

Trips will probably get underway again Tuesday on the <b>Miss Belmar Princess</b>, an email said from the party boat. Trips were weathered out Sunday and today. On a trip Saturday, fishing was fair for blues to 5 pounds aboard, mostly 2- to 3-pounders. The blues chased bait along the water surface, and some good readings were marked along bottom at times. Ava 27 jigs caught best. Trips are fishing for striped bass and blues 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily and fluke and sea bass 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. daily.

Looks like weather will break Tuesday, and fishing is expected to resume that day on the <b>Golden Eagle</b>, a report said today on the party boat’s website. Fishing last week aboard was great for bluefish and sea bass. That’s expected to continue, and trips are fishing for striped bass and blues 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. Sometimes the trips target sea bass. Fishing and sunset cruises are sailing 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

Weather was tough, “stuck on instant replay …,” Bob from <b>Fisherman’s Den</b> wrote in an email. Anglers tried their best to deal. Fishing for small bluefish was good on Belmar’s party boats on the ocean. A few large striped bass were mixed in. Charter boats trolled large stripers on bunker spoons and Mojos on the ocean. Sometimes the stripers smacked pencil poppers or bunker snagged for bait and livelined. Sea bass fishing was great on the ocean, and limits were common. Some sea bass weighed 3 pounds plus. Fluke fishing was “holding up” in rivers including Shark River. Mostly throwbacks bit, and keepers were in the mix. The store’s rental boats are available to fish Shark River. Justin David from Morristown brought in a 10-pound 8-ounce fluke from Sandy Hook Bay near the Navy Pier. In the surf, striped bass fishing was good, mostly for throwbacks. Clams were best bait, but lures and flies hooked good numbers in early mornings. Keep a sunny attitude, Bob said!


The <b>Jamaica II</b>’s schedule was changed beginning Saturday to a half-day trip for fluke and sea bass every morning and a half-day trip for sea bass every afternoon, the party boat’s Facebook page said.  Until then, the vessel fished for sea bass on a full-day trip daily. On the morning trip Saturday, fluking was slow. On the afternoon trip, great sea bass fishing was pounded from the start. All anglers scored sea bass well on the afternoon trip, no matter talent level. On the final full-day sea bass trip Friday, all drops gave up lots of action, but the anglers had to work to limit out. Some limited, and trips were weathered out Sunday through today, and will resume Tuesday. “West wind on Tuesday is what we want,” the page said. Trips are fishing for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and sea bass 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily.

Fishing for striped bass seemed to slow down a little on the ocean, said Eric from <b>The Reel Seat</b>. The fish were still trolled here and there along the 3-mile line from off Asbury Park to Shrewsbury Rocks. Fishing for stripers is closed beyond 3 miles from shore. Decent fishing for the bass seemed to erupt at Flynn’s Knoll. One tide would fish well for them, and another wouldn’t so much. Surf fishing picked away at small stripers, no great shakes, at usual spots. Bait and plugs caught equally. The ocean’s fluke fishing was fair. Its sea bass fishing was pretty good. Sea Girt and Axel Carlson reefs held plenty of sea bass. Jigs hooked bigger sea bass and limited out with less effort. Fewer small had to be picked through with jigs. The shop carries the jigs, reels, rods and lines, the whole system, for slow-pitch jigging that’s becoming popular for catches including sea bass and cod. The fishing isn’t technically difficult, but the whole system needs to be used, and the shop’s crew can show anglers what’s involved. Bluefishing seemed pretty consistent in Manasquan River for 4- to 6-pounders. Manasquan Inlet turned out a good, steady pick of fluke. Nothing was heard about fishing for sharks or tuna, but might be soon.

<b>Point Pleasant Beach</b>

The boat was moved to Cape May to fish for tuna, sharks and tilefish through July, like it is every year, Capt. Alan from <b>Mushin Sportfishing</b> wrote in an email. The timing was perfect, because tuna and sharks arrived. On the trip to move the boat, sharking was done at night a short time, and a mako was hooked and jumped off. The trip got on the tuna grounds by morning, and began trolling. A decent pick of 45- to 50-pound bluefins built until the fish boiled on top. The trip quickly limited out then released more. Then the trip tilefished, catching bluelines and goldens, drop-and-reel. Some of the bluelines weighed 18 pounds. Spaces are still available for charters and open-boat trips.  

On the <b>Norma-K III</b>, fishing for fluke was picky Friday and Saturday on the ocean, a report said on the party boat’s website. Some shorts, a keeper here and there, and a few sea bass. Fluke are there but sluggish, and will bite better when the water warms. Weather canceled the fishing Sunday and today aboard, but looks great the rest of the week. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily and bluefish 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. every Friday and Saturday.

A trip Wednesday morning had a decent shot of fluke on the ocean on the <b>Gambler</b>, a report said on the party boat’s website Friday. That was the most recent posted at press time. Fluke and sea bass seem eager to bite, but weather keeps putting a damper on everything, it said. “Can’t even finish our last bit of painting,” it said. Sea bass are sometimes mixed in during the fluking. Trips are fishing for fluke 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 2 to 6:30 p.m. daily. Trips for striped bass are running 7:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. Shark in the Dark Trips will begin July 1. Last year, that fishing began with a bang. Crazy action with big sand tigers. The sharking is limited to 25 passengers, and reservations are required.

<b>Seaside Heights</b>

Surf fishing somewhat slowed, a report said Saturday on <b>The Dock Outfitters</b>’ website. Maybe that was because of southerly wind the previous few days on and off. Southerlies cool the ocean near shore because of upwelling, sometimes slowing catches. But Barnegat Bay produced good fishing for blues the couple of days up to then. Just off the dock and along bridges were places to boat for the blues. Anglers on the dock also tangled with assorted sizes of blues on cut bait. Sandworms were supposed to be stocked that day, and terrific-quality frozen mullet just arrived. 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>Forked River</b>

Shark fishing kicked off for the season with two trips in past days with <b>Tuna-Tic Sportfishing</b>, Capt. Mike said. The first trip landed three blue sharks. The second, on Saturday, tackled this thresher shark. Lots of threshers seem to be swimming inshore this year, so if anglers are interested, give a call. Mike expects them to stick around another week or so. More shark trips will fish Wednesday and Thursday. The year’s first offshore trip will sail Friday to Saturday aboard. Mike would like to fish for tuna, sharks and tilefish on that outing, if there’s time. Mostly bluefin tuna are in, but a couple of yellowfin tuna are. Tilefishing seems okay, according to anglers Mike spoke with. The ocean was 60 to 61 degrees during the shark fishing. The water’s not really warming. The temperature even dropped 5 degrees two weekends ago, causing Mike to postpone striped bass fishing a few days then.


<b>***Update, Tuesday, 6/5:***</b> An email from Capt. Dave DeGennaro from the <b>Hi Flier</b>: “Haven't been out since the blow came through on Sunday. We did sail Saturday with a full boat. I had some good intel from friends up north that Deal and Long Branch were giving up nice stripers so we got an early start and made the left out of Barnegat Inlet. Thirty miles later we put the lines out and we trolled for hours without a hit. The radio echoed the same sentiment of ‘what happened?’ There's nothing worse than getting there to hear that. We went as far as the Shrewsbury Rocks and then we headed back to Barnegat. Stopped at the North Barnegat Inlet jetty and did really well casting light spinning rods with soft plastics for 2 to 4 pound bluefish. Fortunately the guys I had on board were having fun doing that. What does that mean for this week? Absolutely nothing. Whether you are new or seasoned, you have to know that the bite doesn't stay off for long. The only way to see those epic days is to chalk up a few slower ones. Sure there are trends you can exploit if you have the luxury of being able to leave the real world behind at a moment’s notice, but that isn't always the case. The reality is the fish are still here, things got screwed up by the funky weather systems for a few days and now it's time for the next round. You can either be there or read about it. The long term weather and marine forecast looks great. We will be fishing for stripers on the oceanside and fluke and blues in the bay if everyone wants. Sailing Open Boat or Charter: Wed (tomorrow), Thurs, and Fri, June 6, 7, and 8, Noon to 7PM. Sat, Sun, and Mon, June 9, 10, and 11, 6AM to 1PM. 4 people max, all fish are shared.
Everything is provided. You can call me on my cell right up until we leave to see if there is room.”

<b>Barnegat Light</b>

Conditions failed to drift the <b>Miss Barnegat Light</b> much on a trip Saturday, and a few sea bass and fluke were picked aboard, a report said on the party boat’s website. Trips will fish for fluke and sea bass 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday through Sunday and daily beginning Friday, June 15. Sunset cruises will sail Saturday and Sunday and daily beginning June 15.

Good fishing for sea bass was clubbed Saturday on the <b>Super Chic</b>, Capt. Ted said. Lots of throwbacks bit, but so did enough keepers to keep anglers happy, and a few ling were in the mix. The ocean was 63 ½ degrees to almost 65, warmer than before. No trip fished Sunday aboard in rough weather. More of this wreck-fishing is slated for the weekend. Striped bass fishing was pretty slow during the weekend on the ocean. Not many were trolled. Bluefish 3 to 8 pounds, decent-sized, schooled Barnegat Inlet.


Sea bass and more sea bass, said Capt. Mike from the <b>Stray Cat</b>. The fishing’s been going well aboard, and was phenomenal Saturday. Most of the anglers limited out on that trip, and weather was perfect. The boat didn’t need to be anchored, and just hung above the piece. Trips are fishing for sea bass in 90 feet of water and deeper on the ocean. The bigger sea bass are in the deep. All the small could be hooked that an angler could want in 50 feet. The water was 65 degrees and held tons of bait including bunker and snapper blues. The ocean was alive. The coral bottom was covered with bait including sand eels. Open-boat trips are fishing for sea bass every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday, and this week will also fish on Saturday. Sunday looks sold out, but anglers can telephone, like on Friday afternoon or something, because a few anglers might drop out. Bluefin tuna showed up 50 miles from the dock. They were chunked and trolled, and telephone for dates for that angling aboard. Mike saw a couple of photos of mako sharks on Facebook that were caught.

<b>Sea Isle City</b>

Trips were scrubbed because of rough forecasts this weekend aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from <b>Jersey Cape Guide Service</b> and <b>Sea Isle Bait & Tackle</b>. He probably should’ve fished Saturday, he said, because weather was better than predicted. Charters aboard are fishing for summer flounder on the back bay. That angling’s best in the early season now on the bay, before summer’s warm water causes many of the flatfish to depart for the cooler ocean. Still, when that happens, Joe’s charters fish for them on the ocean. Charters with him are also currently fishing for bluefish and striped bass on the bay. The bluefishing still produced last week and should be winding down. The stripers are biting and usually do throughout summer. The bay’s warm enough for trips to throw popper plugs and popper flies to the blues and stripers. They’re active enough in the higher temperatures. Popper fishing draws explosive, visual attacks. Jersey Cape keeps doing that popper fishing for stripers throughout summer. Joe actually poles a flats boat in the shallows, like in a tropical destination, and anglers sight-cast to the bass. Good, unique sport. Keep up with Joe’s fishing on <a href="" target="_blank">Jersey Cape’s Blog</a>.


No fishing sailed in forecasts for rough weather this weekend with <b>Fins and Feathers Outfitters</b>, Capt. Jim said. Fishing for summer flounder is supposed to work the back bay this coming weekend aboard. Fins also fishes for black drum on Delaware Bay that are apparently still biting. Jim during the rough forecasts for Avalon this weekend visited his <a href="" target="_blank">lodge</a> in upstate New York to prepare the place for guests who booked on Airbnb. A discount is available, but only on Airbnb. Anglers use the lodge including to fish for salmon in fall and steelheads in fall to spring on nearby Salmon River. The fishing is world-class.

<b>Cape May</b>

A number of species gave up good fishing, Capt. Tom from <b>Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing</b> wrote in a text. Black drum fishing remained excellent on Delaware Bay on the last trips for them aboard. On the ocean on the boat, sea bass fishing limited out on every trip. Photos he sent looked like the sea bass were quality-sized, too.  Bluefin tuna showed up abundantly both inshore and offshore. Plus, mako sharks, thresher sharks and tilefish are available. Dates are available for all of this fishing this month. Charters and open-boat trips sail.

Five black drum were docked from Delaware Bay with Kevin Driscoll’s charter Saturday on the <b>Heavy Hitter</b>, Capt. George said. Forecasts for rough weather canceled a drum charter that was supposed to fish Sunday aboard. Wind gusted to 30 to 35 knots, and rain fell. George knew no boaters who fished that day. Bluefin tuna are roaming the 30-fathom line. If anglers want tuna, telephone if interested, and fish for them while the tuna are there. Anglers had to find a pile of the tuna that felt like biting. Not all the bluefins did. If fishing stuck with them, a boat could keep trolling and hook none. A boat had to move and find the right tuna instead. George knew anglers who caught the bluefins Saturday, before the rough weather. Some boaters shark fished Saturday. Jim’s Bait & Tackle in Cape May’s shark tournament was held this weekend. George was yet to know results. He thought a mako was entered, but that was unconfirmed. No makos were entered the past couple of years. Cape May’s South Jersey Shark Tournament will be held this coming weekend.  

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