Monday, November 30, 2009

11.29.09 First light, no bite

I went back down to the 8th Avenie jetty this morning. Got here around 530 and met a bunch of guys already there, and my little brother too. I got him all psyched up on the phone the night before so he made the trip over. A few fish were caught blind casting diamond jigs. No big blues or stripers like last night. Saw a pod of fish working further out around 830, but they never came in close enough. Went back at 3 with my son Sean, same thing. This time there was a southeast wind and a pod of fish blitzing too far off the beach. 

Saturday, November 28, 2009

11.28.09 The FISH are IN !!!

Finally got to have some on the beach, well jetty. Around 4 I went down to the 8th Avenue jetty and as soon as I saw the parking lot I knew the fish were here. There was about 10 guys at the end of the jetty and one guy leaving the parking lot with a 30 inch striper. I went down half way and set up shop.I brought my backpack with my camera gear in it, planning to shoot some stuff on a tripod if the jetties were clear. But they weren't and soon the pod of fish was getting closer, +/- 200 feet from the jetty. Guys were snapping bunker and throwing chunks to catch a mix of blues and stripers. It lasted about an hour with most of the action below the surface and the biggest take was on bait. I had fun blind casting Steve's baitfish fly, even though I was getting looks from guys like, " Don't you want to catch fish?" They said the fish were chasing bait up onto the beach at first light so tomorrow that's where I'll be!

11.27.09 Wet a quick line in the Musconetcong

     After a great Thanksgiving at home yesterday today we loaded up Bertha and went to my future sister-in-laws house out in Hunterdon County. Mmmmmm- of course I grabbed my rod and a few flies.  Her house is about 1,000 feet from the Musconetcong River in Asbury.  I have fished this spot years ago, many years ago, and remember I was never alone. There are two bridges on Main Street that pass over the river. On one side is the Asbury Graphite factory and on the island and other shore is a vacant gristmill. I enjoyed fishing for about a half hour, using a "low and slow" approach with a bead head princes nymph. One thing that I saw that was

interesting was a collection of eggs that was near the shore on the island. They were not salmon eggs, they were trout eggs. When I was delivering the eggs for Trout Unlimited's "Trout in the Classroom" the dense white "dead" eggs needed to be removed. That is what I saw in the river. I thought they may have been from a breeder that was stocked by Fish and Game, but it that happened weeks ago. Then I thought someone might have caught one and the eggs were lost after the fish was landed or cleaned streamside.  On the way home I stopped right off of Route 31 and gave a few casts to a skinny section of the Musky - one that I had just seen recently on the Garden State Trout message board. I saw a few fish but couldn't get them interested. I remember reading that post and not being able to place the hisoric blue house on the river. 

11.26.09 Happy Thanksgiving and I see FISH-sort of

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours and everyone not able to be with us this holiday. After I put the bird in the oven I snuck down to Asbury Park to see what was going on. Nothing close but I have noticed a small armada of boats located off Deal and Asbury Park getting closer with each passing day. I talked to a guy here today and he said his buddy got a 43 inch fish here this morning on clams. We'll see, the next few days are supposed to be windy. Enjoy the bird! 

Thursday, November 26, 2009

11.25.09 Fishing Asbury Park

This afternoon I went down to the flume to fish for a bit and practice casting. Believe it or not, I saw fish, and birds dive bombing for bait that was being ripped through. Problem is they were to far out past the end of the jetty, but at least they're here. 

11.24.09 "Please allow me to introduce...BERTHA"

     That's Bertha at the North Beach parking lot in Sandy Hook. I took a ride up there today to see if there was anything going on. I had the parking lot and beach all to myself. I walked the beach awhile, but spent more time practicing my cast into a strong headwind. I am casting about an hour a day. I am about due for another lesson with Jim Valle. 
     But back to Bertha. She's a 1991 GMC Vandura. My father and his wife were the original owners. They took it bacd and forth to Florida a few times, tailed a horse trailer around when my sister was competing, and then she was laid to rest in the back of the construction yard. She had a bunch of issues, mostly electrical. So I saw her one day in the yard and asked if I could try and get her back on the road. That was around 2003. She had 68,000 miles on her. The first step was to get some new tires since the ones she had were dry rot. Then off to the Tom at Douglas Auto Electric in Red Bank to figure out the electric problems. Then a tune up, a bath, and away we went. She has become the family vehicle, since now my family includes my fiance and her daughter. So it's six of us she carts around. She's been to Florida, the Adirondacks, Poconos, Atlantic City, and beautiful Camden New Jersey. She's mostly used for trips, but my partner Marc and I use her for work when we're too broke to afford a room when on assignment. She has a towhitch, that's works perfectly with my drift boat! So next year we'll be spending alot of time in the Catskills floating the Delaware. 

     She has a "Life is Good" spare tire cover, which I love, because most of the time when I am driving her I'm either with people I love or doing something I love. As far as "Bertha" , she's named after a Grateful Dead song of the same word. So if you see us near the beach or river, stop over and say hello. " I had a hard run, runnin' from your window..."

11.23.09 Checking out the 8th Avenue Flume

I went down to the 8th Avenue jetty in Asbury Park to see if there were any fish around. The water was rough and dirty. Not a fisherman, or a fish, to be seen.  

Sunday, November 22, 2009

11.22.09 The International Fly Tying Symposium

The Collins Hackle booth

     Today I met up with Chris Roslan at the International Fly Tying Symposium held in Somerset , New Jersey.  He's writing a quick story on the show and asked if I would shoot an image while I was there. We first sat down with show Director Chuck Furimsky, whose also the Director of the huge Fly Fishing Show that comes to Somerset in January. Next we moved into the conference room that held some of the most talented fly tyers in the world. Dick Talleur, Charles Meck, Marc Petitjean, Enrico Puglisi, Robert Lewis, Harry Schoel, Dave Rothrock,  and more. 
     I walked the show and stopped in to see some fantastic flies being made, some looking more like real insects then flies. I went to a good lecture given by Mike McAuliff and John Collins on fly fishing the rivers of New Jersey from January- December.  I have to say I have never fished New Jersey streams and rivers from November through April, so I'll have to give that winter fly fishing a shot. I made some images of the crowds gathered around Charles Meck and Marc Petitjean, and spent some time watching and talking with Bob Lindquist from Long Island who was tying a peanut bunker fly. 
     The larger Fly Fishing Show is scheduled for Jan., 22-24, 2010 at the Garden State Convention Center in Somerset. See you there!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

11.21.09 TU Trout in the Classroom Update

I received this image from the Neptune Middle School. It is a two-headed trout fry. I'll keep you posted on how it develops!

11.19.09 Getting the lodge ready for winter

     Ran up to Ausable Forks to check on the lodge before winter. After a quick 5- 1/2 trip up I was happy to see the road improvements that had been taking place since the summer were close to completion. The Black Brook side of Ausable Forks received a stimulus grant to install curbs, sidewalks, and repave Route 9 that is the main street in town. Our street, French Village Road, runs off Route 9, and wasn't part of the plan since it's a town road. That said, I have been working with the town and state DOT to have the improvements come up to in front of the lodge and future fly shop. In the photo above taken from the bridge in town you can see the lodge to the right and the future fly shop to the left. 
     The lodge will be available in 2010 for weekly rentals, or your home away from home part of our fly fishing packages. In between fishing next year we will be making improvements both inside and outside the lodge. 
Hope to see you next year !

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

11.18.09 Just checking in

Just running around getting back into the swing with work and daily life. Went to my Trouted Unlimited meeting, won a book during the raffle. Tomorrow heading up to the Adirondacks to tighten up the lodge a bit before we go back up during the holidays. I talked to some guys who fish the beaches and they all said that it's been a tough fall, SO FAR. But that there's still plenty of good fishing to come this season, hopefully!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

11.14.09 Back to reality, and a Nor' Easter

Me and the gang  got back from Disney on Sunday the 8th. We had great weather in the Bahamas and in Florida the whole week. Since we got back the weather has been pretty bad. While away we were just ahead of Hurricane Ida, and now the remnants of her are battering the eastern seaboard. This morning I went out and checked the beaches to see if I could get some fishing in.  The seas were rough and the wind strong off the ocean. I didn't see a guy in the water, although a small group of guys with long surf rods in Asbury Park were inwaiting for a break, a bird, or a bass to show.  

If you haven't checked out the website, click on Audio slide shows and you can see a little something I put together about a trip I made to Labrador for some of those famous Minipi brook trout. 

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

11.02.09 Fly fishing, well sort of, in the Bahamas

That's me, standing on the dock in Nassau, Bahamas. What you can't see is the 1,000 foot long boat that brought me there, the Disney Wonder. Prior to my families cruise and trip to Disneyworld I researched fishing and guides out of Nassau. I found a few but it would have been 1) selfish, 2) a little pricey and 3) logistically difficult to pull off. So after we got off the ship I settled on avoiding the nagging locals about taking me fishing and opted to sneak around the dock looking for fish. After assembling my fly rod I took some blind casts into the crystal clear blue green water. I found some jacks and spadefish that were willing to chase my fly. What they were more interested in were the knots between the fly line and my leader. As I sat there alone in the shadow of the Wonder I heard a golf cart approaching in the distance. Soon I was greeted by a nice fellow who told me I couldn't fish on the docks and had to exit the port in order to fish. He got a chuckle when I asked if I was going to lose my gear and never see my family again! So after that, at least I can say, yes, I have fly fished in the Bahamas!