Friday, December 1, 2023

Fishing Line: Sept. 27

A nice keeper for this angler, courtesy of the Sailor’s Delight.

By Mark Robbins

Well, talk about bad timing. The recent hurricane stayed well offshore but still caused some days to be lost to fishing. With the summer flounder season ending today, no one wants to have lost any of those days to the weather. But, since no one asked us, I know we should be happy that no more time was lost to any storms before then. Anyway, we need to get back to fishing, and that’s what happened. Let’s see how the fishing was before and after the blow.

Captain Chuck, from the Sea Star III, reported that the weather adversely affected his trips this week as only a few days were fishable. Such are the effects when a hurricane, even one that is far off the coast, passes by. When he did get out, the fishing was “good”. Fluke, sea bass (thrown back), triggerfish, croakers and even a “couple” of bluefish were eager to feed before Hurricane Lee moved far enough north to become a factor to the local captains.

Brendan Carmen with his 7.15-pound fluke, courtesy of the Sea Star III.

The pool-winners during the week, all winning with fluke, were Tony Koska with a 4-pounder, Ron Walker with a 4.1 fish and with the big fish of the week, Brendan Carmen who caught a 7.15-pound winner which was also his personal best for fluke.

Cape May Bait and Tackle reported that there are plenty of kingfish and croakers along the area beaches. You could also get a flounder from the surf or a bluefish from those that are swimming along the beachfronts. They have the baits and information you’ll need if you decide to enjoy a few hours at the beach. And the best thing is that you can pick up some fresh fish for dinner.

Thinking about it, fishing on the beaches for the kings and croakers is a good starting activity for young anglers. It doesn’t take too much experience for a young angler to be able to toss their rigs out into the surf. And if you think about it, it’s the best place to gain those important skills. Open stretches of beach are plentiful and chances of crossing lines or tangling with another angler are minimal. From experience, I know many great fishing memories can be made from late summer, or fall outings, on the local beaches for you and your young anglers.

Wes and his Sheepshead, courtesy of Boulevard Bait and Tackle.

Captain Tom, from Fishin’ Fever Sportfishing Charters, is now accepting reservations for trips through November 15th. Trips for sea bass, tuna, tilefish, mahi and swordfish are available. Certain days, already reserved, will be for a specific species and those trips may have open seats that you can reserve. Filling out a six-pack trip is good if you can’t fill the entire trip with your group. Other days are totally open for you and your group, or others can join you to fill out the charter. Either way, check out Tom’s availability on his Facebook Page, then give him a call at 609-868-6014 to reserve a day for your trip.

Full Ahead Sport Fishing, with Captain Bob, reported a good mid-week trip that was also time efficient. The charter had their boat limit before noon. “Overs” and “slots” were so plentiful that many were thrown back. Andy led the way with a nice 25-inch fluke that gained him bragging rights for the day.

The Miss Avalon is finishing up their flounder season, as is everyone, and they will now turn their attention to sea bass. With that in mind, The Miss Avalon crew will have an Opening Day trip on October, 1st. It’s a reservation only, 10-hour, 7am till 5pm trip. Call 609-967-7455 to

reserve a seat. The season opener is this Sunday, so don’t delay.

The Starfish has been sailing for tilefish every Tuesday and Thursday, as well as select Saturdays, when the weather allows. You can give them a call or book online at their website. They are also offering a buy five, get one free special on 8-hour seabass trips. The sea bass season opens this Sunday, October 1st.

Billy M. and his 34.4-pound Cobia, courtesy of Sea Isle Bait and Tackle.

Sea Isle Bait and Tackle had some good catches to report after the storm passed and it’s nice to see that good fish are being caught.

Alex B. stopped by with a 6.01-pound, 25.75-inch fluke. The fish fell for a Gulp white-glow grub. The other catch of note was the 34.4-pound Cobia caught by Billy M. He saw others swimming around, and mentioned that he lost a big one at the side of the boat. I know a lot of anglers are glad to hear that there are some Cobia swimming around the area.

Boulevard Bait and Tackle sent word of another nice sheepshead being caught. This fish went to Wes, while fishing from a local bridge, whose offering of a sand flea was eagerly accepted.

The Sailor’s Delight, with Captains Stan and Andrew, have been busy reaping the rewards of back bay fishing. The recent passing storm that created a mess on the ocean, didn’t have nearly the same effect on the backwaters.

Recent trips have seen their patrons catching keeper fluke and weakfish as well as some marauding bluefish. Obviously, both captains are happy that the water they fish is still proving to be productive.

Well, the storms passing, which caused a loss of fishing chances, made it tougher for anglers to get out and catch fish. As the weather clears, good luck if you get out, take care and I’ll see you around.


Author of The Fishing Line, a regular column published in the Cape May County Herald covering the local fishing scene.

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