Wednesday, November 30, 2011

11.30.11 IBSP, after fish, after fish, after fish, after fish, after fish, after fish, and more fish

     Had a cancellation today so I decided to give it a shot. Started in Avon before light and found huge waves on the start of the incoming tide. Beautiful morning but with little water and huge breakers it was

tough to find a place where the fish would hold. Decided around 830 to take a drive down to Island Beach State Park since things didn't feel good up here. Got down around 945 am and started at A10. Plenty of anglers out and soon after hitting the beach they were on them. They caught fish, and more fish, and more fish. It was the last of the incoming and they caught fish, and then it was slack tide, and they caught fish. The meal of the day was metal, most using Ava's with a teaser, although I did see some Vision type rubber eels dancing in the wind. It was a tough go with the fly rod. SW wind that was gusting and a hard right to left current. It took my fly line as soon as it hit the water, and I was using the Depth Charge line with a Skull Candy tied fly. Every time a fish was hooked they were walking it north on the beach. I tried to cast out over the breakers to where the fish were bottled up in the bowls on either side of the cusps, but I nearly got washed out one time, for real, like I was about to ask for help. Embarrassing. I just needed another, +/- 40 feet?

     I moved south to A18 and found two guys talking and breaking down after fishing. They each had 2 keepers. I started to picture how many fish are caught and kept, it'a amazing the species continues. After the walk over the dunes I arrived to a sweet bowl that was dotted with about 6 anglers. The only room was the top spot which was in the water. It was the start of the outgoing so I walked in, and didn't get far. The water was moving. Soon these guys were hooked up, sometimes three at a time. They were using Ava's, one a Bomber, and one a bright green large eel, Hogy or Stingo?, it was huge. I casted my arm off and didn't get a bump. It was frustrating. I saw Bob Popovic's drive past me while I fished and I got a message from him later that he had caught three down at the Pocket at the north jetty.

Found these keepers in the back of a guys truck

     My favorite picture is the one above. It reminds me of when the paleontologists find the dinosaur bones that show they fought till the death. Here's a busted fishing pole with the line still attached to the carcass. It washed up some time on the high tide. I wonder what the story is behind that one?

All is all it was a good day. Lot's of wind, lot's of waves, lot's of current. I probably saw 75 fish caught and 40-60 kept after being caught or already in the car, cooler or on the beach. And, I only saw one fish kicked back into the surf.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

11.13.11 Bass on metal this morning, wouldn't touch anything else

     Early this morning was the day for the metal guy. I got down to Deal before first light and was out on the tip of the rocks on the incoming. Of course I had my "new" net with me just waiting to try it out. I fished left, front, right without a bump. As the waves got bigger and the ocean got higher I decided to get off that groin as there's a low spot near the beach. I saw my buddy Rich on the end of the next groin and made my way out to him. There was a fly angler working mid way out and he didn't get anything. Rich was all jazzed up still from yesterday, but that was well, yesterday. Today there was no birds or bunker around. It was just a S wind with good sized waves crashing on the rocks. Rich had already landed and released a 25 inch fish and soon after got into another one using an AVA with red tail. There were plenty of other guys out throwing flys, poppers, and Bombers, and even a large contingent of clam soakers. He then went on and put on a striper-fishing-on metal-clinic by hooking and or landing about a half a dozen fish in total. 

     But the story of the day was being able to use my new super amazing net. Let's just say we need to go back into the engineering a little more. Like I've said, love the idea, but getting it usable and right is taking some time. Short of carrying a gaff, a fly rodder definitely has more of a challenge landing fish off the rocks than a spin fisher. Rich is using 30 pound Power Pro with a 60 pound leader, he is able to lift those fish up the rocks with out a problem.
     So when Rich got a nice fish on I dropped my rod, basket and Gale Force pack and got ready to land his fish. I extended it out to 10 foot and waited for him to guide the fish to me. The water was rough and the waves broke at my knees making holding the net flat hard. Then when we did get the fish on the net I couldn't pick it up AND keep it flat because it would roll off. So, after today, I realized I need to have more of a belly in the netting and that it can't be used to just guide the fish up the rocks, but net it as well.
It will work, I swear.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

11.12.11 Bunker galore in the morning...snapped a Helios at night

     Got a call from my buddy Rich early telling me that there was bunker everywhere this morning even pushed up into the beaches and rocks. Not peanuts, but big bunker around a foot long. He managed a nice fish on Ava out in front of the rocks. I took a ride down to 8th Ave and found that pod just off Loch Arbor. There were predator fish in the mix, most likely bog blues since some were caught off Asbury Park. 


Today was a busy day, no clients and lots of other work stuff to do. I decided to head out later, catching the  end of the incoming. I first stopped at Ocean Grove and walked out past the Fletcher Lake outflow sandbar. I made two casts and on the second retrieve I felt something wasn't right, when I got it in, the tip was snapped off. Off to Orvis again. I am thankful how Orvis stands by their product and the guarantee they offer on their rods. Now it'll be an Access for a few days.

Friday, November 11, 2011

11.11.11 Thank you Veterans for keeping us free!

     We can do whatever we choose to do in this country as long as it conforms to the laws of the land. We can live where we want. We can choose to do the work we want. We can go to school if we want. We can speak our minds if we want. Today thanks to the Veterans who help keep us free. 

And because I am free, I can go fishing, and write about it here. Today I got word that we finally got fish here up north. Full out blitzes within reach off the beach. Sand eels are on the menu. I checked out Deal and found a quiet ocean with a steady hard NW wind. In the dark of the evening I fished 8th Ave for about 45 minutes. A guy next to me caught a short and dropped a keeper sized fish on a black Bomber. He lost the fish and the lure. Should be good off some beach for the next few days, but the weather will keep boats at the docks or on the trailer. 

11.10.11 Started at the Fulton Fish Market and ended at the Further show at MSG

     Started my day at midnight on assignment at the New Fulton Fish Market at Hunts Point, Da' Bronx. I had been to the original in lower Manhattan but this was my first time here. Really cool to see all the super fresh fish from all over the world. That took up most of my night and day. 

Further at MSG, November 10, 2011

     I finished up November 10th at the Further show at Madison Square Garden. At 415 in the afternoon I decided I was going so I found some tickets on Craigslist and jumped on a northbound train. I got in and got my ticket and got to my seat just as the lights went out. Great opening, good first set, some great second set songs that kind of where up and down. Below is the set list for the night. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

11.09.11 Super day for stripers out of Barnegat Light...

"Go south, lad..." so I did. The bite is defineltelt down south. Things up hoem in northern Monmouth County have been spotty and slow. Early this morning my buddy Canio and I took the Jones Brothers 1910 down and launched out of Barnegat Light. As soon as we cleared the inlet is was time to go to work.


There was a flotilla of boats north of the inlet all bunched up with tons of birds working about. We took up a flanking position and Canio blind casted while I watched from afar with binoculars. I didn't see anyone hook up so we took a ride down to Area 23 off Island Beach State Park. We had no company, no birds, and nothing on the fish finder. But I just liked the spot. Soon fish were blowing up here and there around us. Canio threw out his T-Hex and was hooked up with his first striped bass.


After a bit and a drift north we headed south where the boats were stacked up just outside the inlet on the outgoing tide. I never like fishing near anyone. Not in the river, not on the beach, not on the rocks, and not on the ocean. So we left and headed around them to beachfront at Harvey Cedars. Again a quiet and flat water, but it felt nice. Then the bass and started blowing up steadily around us. Canio dropped a big


fish which was sad, but funny. We kept up with the fish with him throwing metal and me throwing
Clousers till 11 am. Soon the bite slowed but just before we left acres upon acres upon acres of bunker showed up, but we didn't see any fish on them. There were big blues caught today, and I would have
liked to see when those pods met.



The waves getting into the inlet were about 30 feet high but we rode in with no problems.

I am looking forward to some of the beach reports from Seaside and IBSP. I think this wave of fish have started to or the bulk have moved south.

The north still waits.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

11.08.11 Finally, birds, bait, bass and blitzes off the beach this morning.

     Took an early ride down to Ortley to check on things there, glad I did. It was nice to see lots of birds, bait, bass and blow ups on the flat ocean just as the sun came up. The fish were just out of reach on the outer slope of the bar. Guys throwing metal hooked a couple of shorts. I worked the was out to 70 feet without a bump. Lots of cars on the beach and tons of guys lining the sand. 

We watched as the armada of boats passed us heading south full steam ahead. The fish are here, the boat guys are killing them, and the beach and rock anglers now can play the "put your time in game" with a better chance now of getting into some fish. 

The Dauntless ready to head out

Monday, November 7, 2011

11.07.11 Maiden voyage "Take two!"

     Well today was the second day of the first day out with the boat. Last night I trickled charged the battery  but was still having problems. Luckily Capt Paul Eidman of Reel Therapy and Menhaden Defenders happened to call and was able to troubleshoot the problem over the phone. I dragged my buddy Canio out and we hit the Shrewsbury River. The boat was great. While out I made a few casts just to cast. Wednesday we'll be out front on the hunt. 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

11.06.11 Out on the Navesink ...

and all ready to go at the ramp and....the boat wouldn't start. Dead battery. Going to give it another go tomorrow. Got it on a charge overnight. Did fish this evening at 8th Ave in Asbury Park for a few hours. Threw a black Clouser and white Snake Fly on the outgoing without a bump. Had two other anglers, one with a Bomber and another a Vision Shad, neither did anything either.

I got a few whiff's today that fish are around, and they are reliable sources. Hope they're here.

Ocean out front holding at 57 degrees. Still no bait.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

11.05.11 Jersey Shore Trout Unlimited outing in Deal tonight...

      Tonight was the Jersey Shore Chapter of Trout Unlimited's Fall Outing. We first met at the Blue Swan Diner and had dinner and then drove over to Deal to catch the start of the outgoing tide. We threw flies into stained water with big waves and swells. Didn't hook into anything but had fun just the same. 

Friday, November 4, 2011

11.04.11 Fished just about everywhere...and why I HATE Seaside Park, New Jersey

     I almost give up, that's the way I feel as of late. I'm kidding of course, it's just frustrating the way this years fall striper run here in New Jersey is going. Today I fished way too much. I started in Avon at 330 a.m. with Pennsy Bob fishing the Shark River Inlet, not a nothing and saw nothing. Then I moved to 8 th Ave and fished along a guy soaking clams, nothing. Then I finished up for an hour an a half fishing the tip of the rocks in Deal, nada. Few things, one, I see no bait, none, anywhwere on the outside. Water temps are around 58 degrees and maybe the bait hasn't moved out yet. Two, I talked with two guys today who one snagged , and the second, cut open a keeper and found 9 inch sand eels inside. I think that's what that first big push of stripers was on. It left Montauk and followed them right to the IBSP/ Barnegat area, and now they are moving south. Today I saw lots of northern party parts motoring south today in sh%t wind and seas to fish. 

     So after some quick editing and photo/computer work I decided to go south. I have seen some pretty good reports ( Shore Catch and Betty and Nicks) about the beaches down near Seaside/ IBSP/ Barnegat Inlet, so I figured what's the harm. I always like fishing near the Casino Pier in Seaside Park so I settled there around 1030. It was the start of the incoming and I knew I had a little wait for the bait and the fish to come over the sand bars and get active in the trough. The wind was NW and howling up to 30, so it made throwing a chartreuse/white Clouser fun. I worked north and south of the pier without a bump. I met up with two brothers who fish this beat often and they said yesterday they had keeper fish come in yesterday an hour before high tide. I tried to leave from 12;30- 2;30, but they kept saying you should stay. Then one brother left, and the remaining brother Hank, kept my interest peaked. He's been fishing here for years and was full of tips and general fishing knowledge. Soon, a few more locals showed up and started to fish pretty hard, maybe something was going the baitto happen. Around 245 guys started to walk off the beach, and I did also. I walked up the ramp as a few guys sat in their trucks watching the surf. 

Then the worst part of my day happened. I saw something under my windshield wiper. It was a parking ticket. I looked at the 2,000 parking spaces and there were about 6 cars and trucks parked. Three had tickets. Are you kidding me? The lot during the day is used by anglers, beach walkers, and the fitness conscience and the elderly walking the boardwalk! It's not summer anymore. I looked for a sign that said that parking was enforced, and found a small sticker on each meter that said from September 15th - May 15th meters must be fed from Thursday at 12 till Monday at 7. That one a business card sized sticker. The ticket is $ 45 dollars. 

I'll never spend a dollar in that town. I hope they put the 45 dollars to good use. 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

11.03.11 Fly fishing blogs have "jumped the shark"

Here's what "Jumping the shark" means-

Jumping the shark is an idiom, first employed to describe a moment in the evolution of a television show when it begins a decline in quality that is beyond recovery.

I am finding that everywhere and everyday I turn on the computer there is a new fly fishing blog. Great, I know it's all good. In a world where content has become devalued this is a continued opportunity to give and get more free content and images for people to read and see for free. There is a now a blog for every type of fishing in every corner of every place in the world now. These now on top of a wide assortment of free online fly fishing "magazines".

I have been approached as other guides have by bloggers who would like to "fish" and then blog about the experience. I have heard, " Well you know, I'm in the fishing industry so i cant pay you". So rather then paying the half or full day rate, plus a thankful tip if deemed appropriate by the "client", they will fish, shoot a few frames and then write a blog about it. Mmmm...okay I guess. Again, it's all good? Right. Well no.  These authors also sometimes approach manufacturers to get products at a reduced rate, as professional guides, outfitters, and members of the sporting media might get.

Years ago writers, reporters, and photographers were hit with the revolution of audio slide shows, that came and passed. Then it was shooting video, that came, and didn't pass, but has become so easy for anyone to do, that it's now a standard you see on newspaper websites, fishing related websites, and You Tube and Facebook pages.

Now it is in style to have a blog. Why not, it's free, you can use other people's images and content, all with permissions I'm sure, and wax poetic about whatever you like. You can even use a manufacturers images of their products and "review" them yourself. You can have links to a manufactures website, it helps makes your blog look "official". Most of what you see are widgets with links, not paid ads. The manufacturers don't care, they have a new outlook. They just want to out there, they don't care how or where, they are even on competitors websites- link, link, hit, hit.

I started this blog in 2009. I have met a boat load of great folks because of it.

It helps with business, or at least I tell myself this, but it takes a lot of time and work to keep up.

Again, I find there is just too much content available from too many sources, for free, including this blog.

As the internet waves get saturated with fly-fishing blogs I can't help but think this blog too, has, jumped the shark.

That's my rant. Gone fishin'

11.03.11 Found this link on a post on the Bass Barn

Fished this morning from 4am till 6. Asbury, Avon , Deal. Nothing. Gonna give the incoming a try in the morning light.

Yesterday I found this link on a post on the Bass Barn site. It's an old 1999 PBS documentary on the New Jersey striped bass fishery.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

11.02.11 Working on a "Jetty Net" to help clients land stripers on the rocks

     For those of you who love or make a living fishing the beaches and rocks along the Jersey Shore you know how difficult it is to land big, and small, fish, while on the jetties and groins. I am currently field testing a beta version of a "Jetty Net" that I am developing. Rather than using a scoop type net to net the fish, my system creates a cradle where fish can be guided onto the large netting and lifted or slide up onto the rocks. I started by contacted Noreseman Outdoors, HERE, and spoke with the company about what I was looking to build. I ordered the StowMaster SS116Y which has a length of 116" ( 9-1/2 feet) and a hoop diameter of 36" by 38" inches. I removed the standard rubber dipped net and replaced it with 5/16 nylon/poly rope that was weaved throughout. The net folds in half and has a retractable handle.

If you see me carrying it out to the rocks I will surely be asking you land your fish to see how it works.

How many fish have you lost trying to land on the rocks?

How many times have you cut a leader/ tippet/ fly line while trying to land a fish on the rocks?

How many times have you "guided" a fish up a wave or the rocks only to have the fishes true weight snap your fly rod?

How many times have you almost broke your ass trying to make your way back to the beach to land your fish?

How many guys have you asked to move back while you make your way down to the beach end of the jetty?

And, how many times have you put your fly rod down, climbed down the rocks, busting your ass, and then having your fly line find the mussels and barnacles on the underside of the rocks anyway?

Those have all happened to me and that is why I am developing this product.

Let me know what you think.