***Update, Thursday, 3/26:*** The beginning of the year’s fishing is near on the party boat Golden Eagle, a report on the vessel’s website said. The boat is scheduled to begin fishing first for striped bass. But the ocean will need to warm 6 to 8 degrees, before the angling begins, and that will take a few weeks. The boat is expected to begin fishing in mid-April, later than planned, because of the cold this year. The cold also delayed seasonal maintenance on the vessel, and the boat is still in the ship yard. The start of the trips will be announced on the boat’s site.
Hardly anybody fished, said Bob from Fisherman’s Den. One of the Belmar party boats sailed the ocean, carrying customers, and cod fishing was okay aboard. But hardly anybody even fished Shark River for winter flounder from the bulkheads. Every time a couple of days with better weather arrived, something happened like snow. Then the water became cold, because of runoff. The shop is open daily, and worms and salted clams are stocked. Keeping the worms was tough, when demand was down. Worms arrived once a week, and didn’t live forever. But some were usually on hand. The store’s rental boats are available to fish the river for flounder. Striped bass were yet to be landed locally this season. For freshwater anglers, trout season will be opened starting April 4. All the supplies for trout will be stocked next week, Bob figured.