It was 64 degrees in the Hudson and East rivers today, but even those high readings didn't slow the striper bite on sand worms, peanut bunkers and eels as the release count for Many and I by the evening on Ty Man from Gateway Marina in Highlands was 17 stripers (including 10 from 28 inches up to 26 pounds), six blues from about 3 pounds up to 30 inches, five weakfish from 22 to 24 inches, one porgy. At Belmar, the Golden Eagle had lots of blues from 2 to 10 pounds along with some bonito and little runny on both Run-Off Hammer jigs and bait.
Adam La Rosa sent the following report from Canyon Runner Charters Last Minute Weekend Trips Available This Saturday - Sunday Very Rare Open Boat Weekend Trip Last Trip Capt. Deane Was On the Meat Discounted October Dates Available SATURDAY'S TRIP WITH TOM WILLIAMSON While several trips prior had been slow - Capt. Deane decided to head to the southern canyons with the Tom Williamson charter and once again found the meat. The party boats got in on the action on the chunk as well with catches of 10-12 fish on a few nights last week getting the party boat fleet, and us, excited!
The Queen Mary from Point Pleasant won't be fishing for blues on Monday. The Sea Hunter from Atlantic Highlands got into blues averaging 4 pounds, but there were a few larger choppers jigged -- including an 11-pounder by by Ryan Von Tassel.
It's been a long time since a large surf striper was reported, but Grumpy's Tackle in Seaside Park weighed a 47-inch, 29. John Bushell, at Betty Nick's Tackle weighed an 11 1 16-pound striper that Darryl Zaricek caught on a SP Minnow in the park.
The Golden Eagle from Belmar started out catching smaller blues and bonito before making a 5-mile run offshore to find jumbo blues up to 20 pounds. I went to Belmar, and again had a single strike on a Tactical Anglers Bomb Jr. popper which came from a 23-inch striper.
Bluefish aren't everywhere, but there are still opportunities to get into hot fishing, such as I had in the Hudson River last week when Chick Many handled his Ty Man and took care of the releases as I caught 24 blues in less than an hour on a big pencil popper before a short striper beat them to it. There have been a few stripers plus big blues in Point Pleasant Canal for those fishing jigs or live eels (which Castaways has in stock) at night.
The surf was rough this morning, but Vinny D'Anton of Wall released a 24-inch striper that hit a Chug Bug at Belmar, and Joe Melillo at Castaways Tackle in Point Pleasant reported a few bass are being caught in the local surf on metal. The Seaside Park tackle shops are reporting small blues in the surf, with a few bass among them.
The Golden Eagle from Belmar had a great first hour of jigging with Run-Off Hammer jigs this morning as jumbo blues up to 22 pounds were boated Most were in the 15-ro-20-pound class, but after that there was a long pause before some little tunny were hooked. The party boats have been targeting a mixed bag of fish mostly blues, small weakfish, and some tog and triggerfish.
There was some good news from the surf this morning, as Vinnie D'Anton of Wall found a school of mullet at Belmar and lost a keeper-size striper on a Chug Bug before landing a 33-incher that weighed 11 5 8 pounds at Fisherman's Den in Belmar Marina. Five short tog were also caught from among the many small sea bass during the brief period of relatively slack current.
The Ocean Explorer from Belmar reported fine porgy fishing and some blackfish despite a large ground swell. As the current slowed, I switched to casting sandworms on light spinning for a good blackfish bite that produced releases of 10 short tog up to 14 1 2 inches from among numerous very small sea bass.