Just because it happens every year doesn't mean I have to understand it, not only me but every striper fisherman along the Jersey Shore. 'There's no bait" "The baits off" "Beach replenishment killed it" "The waters too warm" "The storm stopped the mullet" "Wait till this new moon" "We've killed all the bass" "They're still in Montauk" and "You just suck as a fisherman".
But the thing is, why is there a lull from mid-September until late October? Water looks good, water temps better than July and August. There's bait around, at at times there is. And there's been weather to churn things up and make some, just some, fishable structure on the beach. There are a 1,000 explanations, but its still weird. We come down and throw poppers and crab flies in the summer and catch, why does it turn off mid-fall? Got to start thinking like a fish.
This morning my hopes were high and expectations low. I was surprised to see the moon rise around 5:15 am, isn't that when the sun rises? That just confused me. Started with a Double Barrel Popper and a Snake Fly trailer and fished up and down two groins and one long open beach without a sniff. I was doing that on a intermediate line. I switched over to a 300 gr sinking line and went Snake and sand eel fly, again same territory and without a bump.
Conditions looked perfect for a fall morning. But, no bait, no birds, no signs of life near or far. For those that are on deck for a walk and wade trip, as Mel Gibson yelled in Braveheart, "Hold, hold", because its coming, no sense of going unless its just to give it try or get your feet wet in the salt.