The time has come for some to take a break from the chaos that was and is Sandy and Athena. For some lives will never being the same again, for others it has been changed physically or emotionally. Thirteen days later some are heading back out to fish. Although towns, beachfronts and beaches are closed, we are finding places to access the water and fish. This morning I found anglers walking past the wreckage of the boards to fish their favorite groins or beach. There weren't a lot of people out and it was just as relaxing to watch a few fly fishers open up their cast and try for some striped bass in search of a meal. I spoke with a few anglers who either caught or hooked up with some bass, to under keeper or keeper sized that were never landed or released. (Continued below)
At some marinas including at Belmar and Point Pleasant, headboats loaded up anglers willing to take the chance to go out as the Captains attempt to mark some fish. This morning the ocean seemed earily quiet with flat seas and little bird activity. I watched as several boats cleared the Shark River Inlet heading out past the damaged boards and debris strewn along the beaches.
After watching people fish and the boats head out I decided to wet my own line. I found good groin access and made my way out. For those who frequent the rocks, BEWARE, things are different everywhere you walk. Your usual haunts are different, with large rocks shifting and or moved. "Jetty" anglers can walk along their favorites in the dark, skipping along the tops without fear. Now you should fear. The angles are different. The distances are different. If you have fallen hard on the rocks, even just once, then you know how painful it is. You also know that post 40 you don't bounce back like you used to.
I am still running fly fishing instruction and casting lessons and beach trips as we continue post Sandy. Next week I will be continuing my boat charters as soon as I find where the fish are biting best. That may be along the northern Jersey Shore, or take us south off Atlantic City. Email me or call for info 732.261.7291