Boaters shoveled up fluke, good catches, at the Mud Buoy, where they’d been catching them all along this season, said Jimmy from Julian’s Bait & Tackle. A charter captain friend totaled 25 keepers for six anglers on a charter Wednesday at the Mud. Bluefish were around, including at the Mud, where they were chummed. Ling fishing was great on the ocean, and huge winter flounder were mixed in. Another captain friend was loving that angling, even glad to do that instead of fluking, on his charters. Porgies bit at the Tin Can Grounds and Reach Channel, and a few, not many, hit around docks. Snapper bluefishing was good at docks and other back waters. Striped bass were trolled at Romer Shoal in mornings. But one customer wormed them. Worms were difficult to obtain from suppliers, and some were stocked the other day. Otherwise, the full supply of baits is carried. Tuna fishing was good offshore, when trips had the weather to sail. Boats will probably sail for them Friday, when the swell becomes smaller and longer.
Nice weather, good fishing – doesn’t get any better, Capt. Ron from the party boat Fishermen wrote about the fluke trip Tuesday aboard, in a report on the vessel’s website. Action with the fish was good then and on the previous couple of days. Lots of the fluke were throwbacks, but a few customers limited, and some of the fluke were big. Capt. Ron Sr. nailed an 8-pounder, giving it away to another angler, and a 6-pound fluke won the pool, on Tuesday. Bring a heavy rod that can handle 10 ounces of weight and deep water. It’s that time of year, and a “noodle” rod won’t catch with that much weight, unless the fish swallows the hook down to its behind. On Wednesday’s trip, Dean Berardi from Florham Park took over the season-long pool for fluke with a 9-pound 30-incher. The trip’s fluking started slowly, a shock after the previous day’s action. But the boat was moved, and game on. Lots of action was mugged, and several 3- to 6-pound fluke came in. Fran Wurtenberg limited out, including two 7-pounders. The Fishermen is fishing for fluke 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. daily and for croakers, porgies and bottom fish 6:30 to 11:30 p.m. daily except Sundays.
After fluke fishing somewhat improved Sunday aboard, wasn’t great, but improved, the fishing was about the same Monday aboard, said Capt. Tom from the party boat Atlantic Star. Both of the daily trips caught that day, not great, but improved. Fluking was tough on both of Tuesday’s trips, for unknown reasons. Wednesday morning’s trip headed to Sandy Hook Channel, and as many throwbacks bit as anyone could want. Not a lot of keepers did, but lots of fluke were hooked. The afternoon’s trip sailed back to the channel, but seas were rolly, so the boat was moved inshore a little, to off Sandy Hook Point. Fewer throwbacks chomped, but more keepers were bagged, than in the morning. Wasn’t great, and not all customers landed a keeper, but all caught at least throwbacks. All the keepers were taken on bait on the trip, though that didn’t always happen on trips. One angler, a good fisherman, found that fishing with bucktails or any artificials was no good on the outing. On the morning’s trip, the fish hit anything, when they were so numerous. Anglers shouldn’t worry about the ground swell reported elsewhere. Where the boat’s been fishing, the ocean’s been beautiful, and if seas become rough, trips retreat into the bay for protection. The Atlantic Star is fishing for fluke on two trips daily from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 to 6 p.m. ***Update, Friday, 8/29:*** This morning’s trip fished the ocean, Tom said in a phone call aboard the outing, and seas were like a lake. There was no giant ground swell, no screaming rip current, just the normal current at Sandy Hook Channel that was fished. Anglers might want to bring an extra rod, a heavier one, because of the depths fished now. That way a heavier one can be fished if heavier weight needs to be fished if the boat drifts faster, and a less heavier rod can be used if the drift is slower. There’s room to stow away the rod not being fished. Fluking began tough on Thursday aboard. Wind blew, and the boat drifted too quickly. But once the drift slowed, the channel could be fished, and fluking gave up lots of action. Lots of throwbacks had to be worked through for keepers. But some keepers were mixed in, and there was plenty of action for everybody. ***Update, Saturday, 8/30:*** Fishing for fluke on this morning’s trip was probably one of the better mornings for keepers, a nice morning, Tom said. Friday afternoon’s trip was similar – nice fishing. On this afternoon’s trip, wind came up from the south, and seas became rolly at the channels, in the outgoing tide, and conditions were terrible for drifting the boat, too. The trip fished some spots there, then moved to the bay. A few keepers were picked, and shorts came up, not as good as in the morning, but anglers didn’t get beaten up by seas.