Thu., Feb. 22, 2018
Moon Phase:
First Quarter
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It's Cold:
Upstate N.Y.
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Upstate N.Y.
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Winter
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It's Warm:
Florida Charters
Today's
High Tides
Great Kills Harbor
A.M.
P.M.
12:18
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Atlantic Highlands
A.M.
P.M.
12:15
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Sandy Hook,
Fort Hancock
A.M.
P.M.
12:25
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Belmar,
Ocean
A.M.
P.M.
11:50
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Manasquan Inlet,
USCG Station
A.M.
P.M.
12:13
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Atlantic City
A.M.
P.M.
11:48
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Cape May,
Ocean
A.M.
P.M.
12:22
---
East Point,
Delaware Bay
A.M.
P.M.
1:29
1:52

More Tides


New Jersey
Saltwater Fishing Report

Report from Monday, February 19.

| Belmar | Brielle | Point Pleasant Beach | Toms River | Forked River | Absecon | Brigantine | Sea Isle City | Avalon | Last Week's Report |
IN WINTER, THIS REPORT IS UPDATED
EVERY MONDAY, AND A FEW UPDATES
ARE POSTED EVERY THURSDAY,
SOMETIMES ON OTHER DAYS

THE REPORT IS FULLY UPDATED
EVERY MONDAY AND THURSDAY
FROM SPRING THROUGH FALL
Belmar
Just one of Belmar’s party boats is fishing, said Bob from Fisherman’s Den. The vessel fished Sunday with 10 or 12 anglers, and Bob didn’t know results, because he wasn’t at the shop that day. But the boat’s been reporting catches of cod, ling and blackfish. Bergals are also biting, and the angling’s slow, but the head boat is the only that’s fishing locally. No trip fished Saturday aboard, because of forecasts for snow. Anglers seem to avoid showing up in forecasts like that, so they can avoid driving in weather. They come from all over. No trip sailed today on the vessel, because only five or six anglers showed up. On a good day, 12 or 15 turn up. On a really good day, 20 do. The vessel is trying to fish daily. The shop is being geared up for the opening of winter flounder season beginning March 1. Worms are ordered for bait, and the rental boats will be available to fish Shark River for the flounder. The slowest time of winter is past, and business will pick up. The store is usually open 5:30 or 6 a.m. until 12 noon or 1 p.m. daily.

Brielle
***Update, Thursday, 2/22:*** A 12-hour trip for cod sailed on Presidents’ Day on the Jamaica II, the party boat’s Facebook page said. Fishing was slow, but a few photos of the catches were posted. The ocean’s temperature dropped in a strong tide from north. “Had ok life from the typical undesirables,” it said. That was a special trip for the holiday, and the boat is sailing on 14-hour trips for cod every Saturday and 12-hour trips every Sunday that fish the Mudhole.

A party boat from Belmar reportedly docked 25 cod the other day, said Alex from The Reel Seat. The trip probably also landed ling. A mate from a party boat closer to the store said blackfishing on that vessel was slow on a trip, totaling 20 of the tautog reeled in. That was all the fishing heard about. The shop had a booth at Surf Day Saturday. Coming up, the store will exhibit at the Berkeley Striper Club’s fishing flea market March 4 in Toms River, Asbury Park Fishing Club’s fishing flea market March 11 at Convention Hall and the Saltwater Fishing Expo March 16 to 18 in Edison. Dave Arbeitman, the shop’s owner, will give a presentation about tilefishing at the Saltwater Sportsman Seminar this coming Saturday in Linwood near Atlantic City.

Point Pleasant Beach
Trips were expected to fish Saturday through today, Presidents’ Day, on the Norma-K III, a report said Thursday on the party boat’s website. That was the most recent report at press time. Prior to then, the most recent trip scooped up a few keeper and throwback cod “and a few small blackfish,” the report said. Forecasts for wind looked like seas wouldn’t be choppy on the trips in past days through today. Clams and crabs were going to be carried aboard those outings for bait.

Toms River
Bloodworms will be stocked Tuesday, said Dennis from Murphy’s Hook House. Anglers will fish for white perch in the Toms River with the worms. When striped bass season opens in back waters March 1, anglers will target them in the river. They’ll also go after winter flounder in the river when flounder season opens the same day. They’ll fish for bluefish when that migration arrives in early spring in the river. The river is fished from bulkheads as well as boats. The fishing season’s beginning at the store, and shiners and nightcrawlers began to be stocked in past days. Dennis hopes to carry killies any moment. The store will probably be open daily beginning today. The shop’s Facebook page said the doors would be open at 9 a.m. today. Hours will be limited at first this season. ***Update, Thursday, 2/22:*** Photos of striped bass landed were posted on Murphy’s Facebook page this week. They’re here! one of the posts said. No location was mentioned, but the fish were obviously hooked in back waters. Release any stripers in back waters until the season opens for them March 1 there. Thanks for not spot burning, someone commented under one of the photos. The page also shared someone else’s photo of a bunker that a seagull dropped along Manasquan River, the person wrote. Bunker swam the river on incoming tide, the person wrote.

Forked River
At Grizz’s Bait & Tackle, Mike hopes to stock bloodworms this week, he said. A couple of customers bought supplies to fish Oyster Creek last week. When striped bass season opens March 1 in back waters, the creek, the warm-water discharge for Forked River power plant, is always one of the first places to give up the bass in the state. The creek can potentially hold stripers, blues, winter flounder and white perch. Flounder season will also open that day. Mike heard no details but knew that fish were being hooked at the creek. The store was open 8 a.m. to 12 noon Saturday. Weather was chilly but clear then and was supposed to become rough later that day into Sunday morning. He expected not to open that Sunday, and has been opening during those hours on Saturdays and Sundays when forecasts have been likely to attract customers.

Absecon
White perch fishing seemed good on brackish rivers, said Capt. Dave from Absecon Bay Sportsman Center. Bloodworms and live grass shrimp were almost always stocked for the angling, and customers showed up from everywhere for supplies for the fishing. The fishing was heard about from Mullica, Great Egg Harbor and Maurice rivers. Dave’s been getting ready for the opening of striped bass season in less than two weeks, on March 1, in bays and rivers. Fair weather looks promising for the angling, and annual gift certificates will be awarded to the store for the season’s first stripers weighed-in, once the season opens. Dave will post details soon on the store’s Facebook page and website. See last year’s winners on the shop’s site. The store is one of New Jersey’s first to report striper catches each year, because of the certificates. The shop is open for no set hours, but Dave is usually there. Call ahead to confirm. The doors will be open daily beginning on the striper opener.

Brigantine
***Update, Thursday, 2/22:*** This was posted last week and is being re-posted for a reminder or in case anybody missed it: Attend the meeting Feb. 27 about the new permit that New Jersey is requiring to drive a beach-buggy on Brigantine’s north end, a post said on Riptide Bait & Tackle’s Facebook page. Click the link and read the post for details. Previously, anglers with a Brigantine beach-buggy permit could drive the north end along with the rest of the town’s beach where driving is allowed. The state this year is beginning to impose an additional permit that anglers would need to buy to drive the north end.

Sea Isle City
Capt. Joe Hughes from Jersey Cape Guide Service and Sea Isle Bait & Tackle will probably fish for striped bass on the back bay after striper season opens in back waters beginning March 1, he said. He’ll run traveling charters to the Florida Keys in March, but if he gets the weather, he’ll fish for the stripers from Sea Isle, too. His trips hook them on soft-plastic lures or flies fished slowly along bottom at places like creek mouths that flush warm water into the bay on outgoing tides. He’s hoping for a great run of bluefish in the bay that’s happened recently in early spring. That bluefishing’s fun. The trips to the Keys fish annually from Christmas until Easter, and some of those fished this weekend with Mike Roth aboard. Mike was mostly fly-fishing for tarpon and had just jumped one off when Joe gave this report this morning in a phone call aboard. He sight-cast to the fish in shallow water. He had one on, on a fly, that jumped off after a couple of leaps yesterday, too, and had other tarpon bites this weekend. The fish this morning were rolling around, were there. He also fished with conventional tackle this weekend, landing fish including lots of jacks and mangrove snappers. See the traveling charters webpage on Jersey Cape’s website.

Avalon
Capt. Jim from Fins and Feathers Outfitters is hoping for good fishing for black drum on Delaware Bay this spring, he said. The fishing was good last year, and the trips mostly fish in May and will probably be some of the year’s first angling aboard. Striped bass fishing is possible before then in spring. Currently, he’s guiding snow goose hunting. Trips this week are supposed to do that on Tuesday and Saturday. The trips hunt in Salem County near Delaware Bay in New Jersey, and then follow the migration north, as far as New York State. One to 1 ½ million of the geese populate this flyway. A hundred-thousand were currently at Pennsylvania’s Middle Creek Wildlife Refuge. So the northern migration just began. Jim will guide the trips into April. Jim’s lodge in upstate New York is booked into the first week of March. Afterward, the schedule’s pretty open. The beginning of March until early April is a good time for guests to fish for steelheads on nearby Salmon River. Current guests were snowmobiling, and plenty of snow covered the ground. Fins offers a variety of outdoor adventures.

Last Week's Report
Report from Monday, 2/12:

Leonardo

***Update, Thursday, 2/15:*** Work is being done on the boat to be ready for spring, between rain and cold, Capt. Joe from Sour Kraut Sportfishing wrote in an email. The first trips will sail for striped bass in early April and are being booked. Catch his booths at the Ocean Fire Company’s fishing flea market Sunday at the Antrim School in Point Pleasant Beach and at the Manville Fire Company’s fishing flea market March 11 at the Manville VFW.

Neptune

***Update, Friday, 2/16:*** Capt. Ralph from Last Lady Fishing Charters will schedule an individual-reservation trip as soon as he thinks fish can be boated, he wrote in an email. The vessel is in the water and ready to sail, and he’s been sprucing it up for the fishing season. Book preferred dates for charters as soon as you can, he suggests. Prices are the same as last year and won’t be increased unless fuel prices spike a lot. In April, trips will fish for blackfish, striped bass, blues, ling and cod. But he hopes cod and ling bite in March. The best months for stripers are April to June and October to December. Last year, fishing for cod and pollock was best in June and July. But March to December can give them up. Ling fishing was best in June to September last year, but March to November can produce. Individual-reservation trips that sail every Tuesday each year will begin on June 19 for fluke. Kids 12 and under sail free on those outings with an adult.

Belmar

One of Belmar’s party boats fished the other day, landing a few cod and pollock and three keeper blackfish, said Bob from Fisherman’s Den. The catch seemed fair, Bob guessed, compared with slower fishing previously. Weather needs to be perfect on the right day of the week to attract enough customers to sail. When fishing’s good, anglers show up no matter. Customers are waiting for winter flounder season to open beginning March 1 to fish Shark River. The store’s rental boats will be available for that angling. The store is open in mornings until 12 noon or 1 p.m.

Brielle

Fishing sailed Saturday on the Jamaica II for the first time in a couple of weeks, the party boat’s Facebook page said. “Rain held off for us today,” it said. Rain was forecast for that afternoon through Sunday. Cod, ling and pollock were picked. “Nothing special but better than it’s been for sure,” it said. The high hook bagged three cod and a pollock. Fourteen-hour trips are sailing for cod every Saturday, and 12-hour trips are fishing the Mudhole every Sunday and Wednesday for a variety of catches like these. ***Update, Thursday, 2/15:*** The boat is expected to fish Saturday on the 14-hour trip for cod and Sunday on the 12-hour trip to the Mudhole, according to the vessel’s Facebook page. ***Update, Friday, 2/16:*** A 12-hour trip will sail for cod on Monday, Presidents’ Day, the boat’s Facebook page said.

A local party boat fished near Block Island on a trip, said Alex from The Reel Seat. Forty or 50 cod and 150 ling were bagged, and 50 throwback cod were released. Some boats targeted blackfish, but not many of the tautog bit. Not worth mentioning, he said. The store will set up four tables at Surf Day on Saturday at Brookdale Community College in Lincroft. The shop will also have booths at the Berkeley Striper Club’s fishing flea market March 4 in Toms River, Asbury Park Fishing Club’s fishing flea market March 11 at Convention Hall and the Saltwater Fishing Expo March 16 to 18 in Edison. Dave Arbeitman, the shop’s owner, will give a presentation about tilefishing at the Saltwater Sportsman Seminar Feb. 24 in Linwood near Atlantic City.

Toms River

Here’s a start to the fishing season. Killies, shiners and, if available, bloodworms will be stocked beginning next week at Murphy’s Hook House, the shop’s Facebook page said. The store currently is open for no steady hours, but was open Saturday morning. Mario from the store heard nothing about fishing, he said in a phone call at the shop that morning. The seasons for striped bass in rivers and bays and winter flounder throughout New Jersey will open beginning March 1. Customers will target both in Oyster Creek and the Toms River. The creek is the warm-water discharge for the Forked River power plant. Currently, anglers might target white perch in the river or creek and release any stripers or flounder hooked there. ***Update, Thursday, 2/15:*** The killies and shiners are ordered, and the store will know today or Friday when they’ll arrive, its Facebook page said. Bloodworms will be ordered Friday to be delivered early next week.

Absecon

A couple of customers stopped by Saturday morning at Absecon Bay Sportsman Center, Capt. Dave from the store said when he gave this report then. But he’d heard nothing about fishing, and was hoping to by the end of the day. On that morning, sun shined, and weather was warming. Although rain was forecast for that afternoon and Sunday, weather was warming recently. Customers bought bloodworms from the store to fish for white perch on brackish rivers like the Mullica. A season’s second flat of the worms was stocked, and so were a few live grass shrimp for the angling. Dave was mostly getting ready for the opening of striped bass season beginning March 1 in bays and rivers. The shop is open for no set hours this season until opening daily starting that day. But currently Dave is usually at the store throughout the business day. Telephone ahead to confirm. ***Update, Thursday, 2/15:*** Striped bass season will open two weeks from today on March 1 in rivers and bays, Dave wrote on the shop’s Facebook page. He’s always one of the first to report the catches, because of the store’s gift certificates offered for the first checked-in. See last year’s winners. He expects to post this year’s prizes soon on the Facebook page. New Jersey had a deep freeze in late December and early January, “but conditions are improving daily,” he wrote. He expects the first to be brought to the store on the opener, unless some kind of extreme weather puts that off. The full moon will be on that date, and that should cause an early migration of herring up rivers. “… there should be Striped Bass following them to add to those that overwintered in the brackish waters,” he wrote. Currently, white perch reports are “running rampant,” he said. A new batch of bloodworms is stocked, and the previous ones sold out quicker than expected. The perch are biting, and anglers seem eager to fish. Cabin fever, Dave said. He also netted more grass shrimp to stock. Reminder: Call ahead to confirm Dave is at the shop.

Brigantine

***Update, Thursday, 2/15:*** Note the date and attend the meeting on Feb. 27 about the new permit that New Jersey is requiring to drive a beach-buggy on Brigantine’s north end, a post said on Riptide Bait & Tackle’s Facebook page. Click the link and read the post for details. Previously, anglers with a Brigantine beach-buggy permit could drive the north end along with the rest of the town’s beach where driving is allowed. The state this year is beginning to impose an additional permit that anglers would need to buy to drive the north end.

Longport

Open-boat trips will fish Saturday through Monday, Presidents’ Day, on the Stray Cat, weather permitting, Capt. Mike said. The trips will fish for catches like cod, blackfish and big bergals. This will be bites, a day out, he said. Not looking to set the world on fire. Twenty-eight-mile wreck should hold some fish. The ocean became especially cold this winter, because of the cold snap around the first of the year. The basin became frozen solid during that time, unbelievable. Maybe angling was beginning to perk up, somewhat.

Sea Isle City

Traveling trips to the Florida Keys will fish this weekend aboard, said Capt. Joe Hughes from Jersey Cape Guide Service and Sea Isle Bait & Tackle. He runs charters to the islands annually from Christmas to Easter. This weekend’s fishing might shoot for tarpon and permits. That angling was good in recent years. Snappers, speckled sea trout and redfish are also possible catches. Sight-fishing for sharks on the flats is also popular on the outings. Anglers often arrive on a Friday evening, fish all day Saturday and part of Sunday, return during that evening, and be back to work Monday morning. Or they can make a different schedule. Joe can arrange flights and accommodations if anglers want. Once striped bass season opens starting March 1 in rivers and bays in New Jersey, Joe is often one of the first captains to hook the fish. He fishes for them at places like creek mouths on the back bay on outgoing tides. Creeks are warmer than the bay this season, and the warmer water flowing into the bay can attract fish. Afternoons on sunny days, when water’s warmest, can fish best. He casts Clouser Minnow flies or soft-plastic lures, working them slowly along bottom. See the traveling charters webpage on Jersey Cape’s website.