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2013 Reports

11/13/13 FYI Our season will continue through mid-December fishing for Tog, Sea Bass & Striper (aka:Rockfish). Stay tuned to our Facebook & website pages for news about the new Fin Chaser which will be ready for action this spring.

11/11/13 Out for a few hours of tog fishing with a crew of three. Today was to be a sea bass trip but the forecast winds forced us to hang very tight to the beach. The bite started off slow but built to a steady pick. Lots of 15″ fish were going back but we also managed to put together a decent little catch for only a few hours of fishing. Back in the slip with 8 in the box the largest tipping the scales at very respectable 6½ lb.

11/02/13 Ran east with a fun group of guys looking to fill the box with sea bass. Conditions were marginal with big swells but thankfully not big wind. First few drifts produced only a couple small fish and the trying to deal with the crazy south current was making matters bad. Decided to throw the hook and see what happens. Bite was steady most of the day. Way too many throw backs but a decent mixed bag of fish going in the box as well. These guys managed to catch sea bass, flounder, sea trout, triggerfish, bluefish, Atlantic bonito and a couple monster conger eels.  Back in the slip with 40 in the box, mainly sea bass.

10/24/13 Pushed this tog trip up a few day to sneak through what was to be a weather window. Unfortunately, the “afternoon” wind” arrived around 8:00 am, by 9:00,  it was seriously sporty, not the best for these tog rookies. Made a big move looking for slightly calmer waters but that dream was crushed when the winds went to 20+. Worked through some sea bass but never could get the tog going. Back in the slip with one 5 lb. tog, a 23″ redfish and one small sheepshead in the box.

10/08/13 through 10/20/13 A couple ½ day trips produced a mixed bag of Sea Bass, Tog and Sea Trout.

10/04/13 Since the chunking bite seems to be all but done I decide to run east and look for some mahi and a longfin or two. Pulled past at least 15 sets of gear and the only bites we could manage were “micro’s”, too small to even beat-up the baits. Sometime around 10:30 we hit a nice edge of warmer water. Fifteen minutes later our long rigger gets nailed by a longfin. The next few hours offer up more longfin and by 2:30, we have seven fat longfin in the box. Sure would have been nice to have the three other bites that didn’t come tight as well as the fish that cut us off on my rudder. Sent the crew back to DC with a cooler full of the best eating tuna in the sea.

10/03/13  Ran south for some mahi action and then a little tuna chunking to finish the day. Spent the morning working the gear but could only find about 15 small mahi interested in our baits. Spent the last two hours of the day drifting for yellowfin. Bite was slow and in order to get some bites we actually started using our wreck fishing rods since they have thin diameter braid. What a treat, battling a 30 lb. tuna on a outfit meant for sea bass. We put two respectable yellowfin in the box and had two more that didn’t come tight.

10/02/13 Out for a day of tuna chunking with a couple jersey boyz. Morning bite is horribly slow and only produces one fish. Just before noon our deep bait get nailed, less than a minute later one of our floater baits takes off too. Sure that we have two yellowfin on we’re shocked when two bills break the surface. You’ve gotta be kidding me, a double header of white marlin while chunking . Oh yea, we’re using 30 lb. leader and one of these marlin is a monster.  We land and release the first fish, a very respectable white in it’s own right, but this other fish, HUGE. 80 minutes later the fish is within gaff range and due to the fact that it’s gut hooked and exhausted from the long fish, thanks to the super light leader, we decide to harvest the fish. Because unlike the rumor that you can’t eat white marlin, it’s actually very tasty.  Back in the slip with two nice yellowfin and a 95 lb. white marlin. The largest “white” caught in OC in many years.

09/27/13 through 09/29/13 cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/25/13 Out with the FedEx crew from Media, PA for a day of offshore trolling. Found a few floating items holding decent numbers of mahi. While working that area our long rigger gets clipped by a wahoo. Thirty seconds later he slams the other rigger and this time his teeth miss the line and fifteen minutes later Dave has the 80 lb. “hoo” on the gaff.

09/24/13 Out with a crew of three from NY for a 9.5 hour trolling trip. The lines hit the water after 33 miles. After a couple miles we get jumped by……turkey’s. The rest of the day can only be described as Thanksgiving in September. More false albacore (aka: turkey) than you can imagine. And these are the “high end” turkeys not just eating our artificial lures but really taking a liking to our ballyhoo. Mixed in with the nonstop turkey action was a wahoo which cut us off, two mahi and a surprise 30 lb. yellowfin. Back in the slip with a cooler full of fish heading to Buffalo.

09/23/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions

09/20/13 & 09/21/13 Fin Chaser has been idle due to an injector pump issue.

09/19/13 Ran south today for a day of yellowfin chunking with a crew of three. Arrived at the hot spot at 8:30 and started throwing chunks. The first drift didn’t produce any bites but the next few provide steady action on yellowfin ranging in size from 25 to 40 lb.  Sometime around noon we have our yellowfin limit so we set out trolling toward the beach. About 30 minutes later a white crushes our long rigger and takes off jumping. Figuring we’d be lucky if the tuna hook holds I wasn’t too surprised when he threw the hook. Pulled in lines around 2 and started running toward the fish cleaners trying to beat the other boats. After a few miles I notice a white bucket floating and see the tell-tale golden glow under it. As I spin the boat around Dave grabs the spinners and we spend a few minutes adding a couple nice mahi to the box.

09/16/13 Today’s open boat trip left the slip at 2:30 am with plans of running 65 miles south to chunk up some yellowfin. Less than four miles down the beach is’t painfully obvious,  NOAA has blown yet another forecast. We turn back, make a quick bait switch, and head east for a day of trolling.  The forecast calls for nicer conditions the farther east you go but that’s not where we’re seeing. At the 40 mile mark I decide we’ve run far enough and the hunt begins. After two hours with nothing but a knockdown, I work toward a big hill that’s been very good this season. As we pull off the edge three rods go down with what seem like tuna’s. Much to my surprise…turkeys, which is local slang for false albacore. The rest of the day see’s regular turkey encounters as well as five mahi. One bite, which we were sure was yet another turkey, turns out to be a 35 lb. wahoo but cut us off just 10 ft. from the gaff. Oh yea, the NW winds which weren’t supposed to hit until late evening, smack us directly in the face shortly around 3 pm, making the last 10 miles to the inlet very memorable.

09/15/13  I am announcing another 12 hour Open Boat Trip for mahi, tuna, wahoo & marlin on Saturday October 5th. The trip will be limited to four people to allow maximum “rod time” per person.  The cost is $390.00 per person. This price INCLUDES gratuity for the mate and fish cleaning. You will spend NOTHING extra. Call now to reserve your spot. 

09/15/13 Out with a crew of five who opted to stay north and try for some mahi or perhaps a marlin. Well, within 45 minutes of the baits hitting the water a white marlin piles on our long rigger and after a great fight we have George’s first marlin next to the boat for pictures. After that encounter we started to work some deep gear with light tackle. The mahi bite wasn’t “red hot” but certainly steady. Fish were going in the bag and the charter really seemed to be enjoying themselves. At one set a crafty wahoo comes out of nowhere and clips off one of our hanging baits. With  less than five minutes left in the day another white grabs our long rigger but misses the hook. Back in the slip with 20 mahi and big George’s first marlin. Instead of throwing George in the water, a tradition for your first marlin, the crew decides to use a dock hose instead.

09/13/13 & 09/14/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/12/13 Ran east with a crew from MD in hopes of finding some fish to the north since a pesky south breeze wasn’t going to let us run south to where we’ve been fishing. Threw out the spread in 50 fathoms and started to work my way down a string of gear. After two hours, several balls and nothing we make a run out over the edge to 120 fathoms. The next several hours are excellent. Within 20 minutes we have a super hot white marlin on that gives the angler fits. After releasing that fish we work a small area that looks “fishy”.  Dave see’s a huge boil on my long rigger and I slowly start to bring it in then, pow, bang, wham. Five rods go down with longfin. One pulls off during the fight but we manage to put the other four in the box.  Worked that area and over the next two hours raising four more marlin and releasing two of them. On of these fish eats a bait thats hanging from the rigger 8 feet from the boat….way cool to watch that. Ended the day with three white marlin released and four of the best eating tuna out there in the box.

09/11/13 Another long run south with a couple of my “tog” regulars from NY. Morning bite was slow with a couple skipjack flurries and one yellowfin. Sometime around 11:00 I noticed birds diving several hundred yards away so I paddled over to have a look. What we found was a large bait ball with some yellowfin holding under it. Started throwing chunks and over the next ninety minutes we added 8 more yellowfin to the box. Back in the slip with 9 tunas heading to the Big Apple.

09/10/13 Today’s 14 hour trip started at 2:30 with a 66 mile run ahead of us. Lines hit the water and the hunt began. After about an hour the pilot whales started to show. Shortly after that the skipjacks started to hit. A few flurries later we’re fighting our first yellowfin of the day. The next few hours provide steady action, catch 7 or 8 skipjacks, get one yellowfin. Sometime around noon the yellowfin bite slowed so we decided to try “chunking” with cut skipjack. WOW!!! Two drifts, lasting 20 minutes each, added six more yellowfin to the box. By 1:00 we had ten yellowfin and a bunch of skipjacks in the box and decide to call it a day.

09/09/13 Rescheduled due to rough conditions.

09/08/13 Headed east with a crew from PA with a forecast that was calling for lighter winds offshore than inshore with both laying-out before increasing and shifting to NW later this evening. At the 30 mile mark things seemed to be getting worse instead of better and at 40 it was obvious that NOAA blew yet another forecast. Threw out the spread and headed toward 60 fathoms in building seas and winds. Worked that area for about 90 minutes and raised two white marlin, but the seas & winds were so tough we really couldn’t see our “pitch baits” to try and position them right in front of the fish. After getting rocked by a couple really big waves and seeing the wind already shifting to WNW, we decide to make our way back toward the 30 fathom area. With conditions still deteriorating, we shorten the trip and make our way home.

09/07/13 Ran 50 mile east with a crew of five from VA. The day provided fairly constant white marlin action. Three anglers on board caught & released their very first marlins. We also jumped off a fourth white and a small blue marlin. Thrown in with all this action were a couple marlin bites that didn’t come tight and a small gaffer mahi that made it to the box.  Our plan was to work the lobster gear but as Murphy’s Law would have it the lobster boat was out hauling his gear so we stuck with the marlin thing.

09/06/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/05/13 OK, yesterday, three boats, including mind, caught a combined total of 27 yellowfin tuna. Today, at the exact same location, there was one white marlin, one 12 inch, yes 12 inch blackfin tuna and a few mahi caught out of over 20 boats. HOW’S THIS POSSIBLE????  I would love to report the 64 mile run was worth it, but five mahi and four skipjacks isn’t much to brag about. Although, we were far more fortunate than many of the other boats. Wondering how a 600 foot deep fence would work….LOL.

09/04/13 Ran 64 mile south with a crew from Quarry Ridge Builders from Lancaster County PA. Morning was rough but the fishing made everyone forget about the big seas.  The action was steady, catch a few skipjack tuna’, then  a yellowfin would bite. This was the scenario throughout the entire day. Everyone had a ball jigging the baits and watching the bites. With a box full of fish, we pulled in lines early to allow extra time to make it home in the still somewhat rough seas. Back in the slip with 12 yellowfin and a pile of skipjacks.

09/03/13 Another day of flounder action with a crew of four from PA. Knew things were going to be different from yesterday when the first drift puts four in the box, one over 8 lbs. The next couple hours are truly fantastic and by 10 am we hit the magic number. With our limit in the box and our junior most angler not feeling 100% it’s time to head back to the fillet table with a box full of flounder many of which over 21″.

09/02/13 Out with a father and son duo for a day of flounder action. Well, it took less than two drifts to realize that conditions really weren’t going to us to pound the flatties. Worked around all day switching back and forth from sea bass to flounder but never found any “great shakes”.  By the end of the day we had one nice flounder and a handful of sea bass ready for the oil.

09/01/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions

08/31/13 Running east with a bachelor party of four looking for something big for the pending groom. After ninety minutes a white marlin pops-up in the spread. I pull the teaser away as Dave positions the “dink” bait right in front of fish. He turns away then turns back and takes the bait. Dave waits, then throws the drag up and the fight is on. Twenty minutes later Chris has his first marlin next to the boat. Like nearly all the other boats in the fleet the rest of our days was horribly slow. A couple buds of mine who are excellent captains went all day without a pull. Hard to think this could happen after the action we, and other boats, had yesterday. Shortly after noon the wind had come up and the reports from the boats closer to the beach claim it’s cranking 25+. The guys overhear the radio and decide to end their day early in order to get back to the campsite, grab a little sleep and enjoy the campfire into the night.

08/30/13 This morning found me running east with a crew from MD on flat calm water. Lines went in after a two hour run and the hunt commenced. About 30 minutes later something grabs the long rigger then drops the bait. A few seconds later the fish picks-up the bait again, runs a few feet and drops it. Sure that we have a white marlin messing with us I make ready for another attack but the white never comes back. Twenty minutes later a nice “gaffer” mahi jumps our mid-rigger and makes it in the box. The next two hours pass without a bite. We decide to make a 11 mile run north to look for some lobster gear. Nearly there, I hear a few guys talking about a few marlin being seen just inshore of where we’re at so we point that way. The next two hours provide plenty of marlin “shots” but these fish just would not turn off of our tuna baits. Try as we may to get these fish to switch off to our circle hook rigs they were only interested in our tuna Islander baits.

08/28/13 Back on the water after a rare vacation. The lines hit the water in 50 fathoms as I pointed the boat north. Our first bite takes about 30  minutes and puts a nice 15 lb. mahi in the box.  The next encounter sees a couple rods go down and two more mahi are added to the box. Pulled in the troll baits and broke out the light tackle and added another ten to the box. Worked my way north without any other encounters. Turned around and started to paddle south. After three miles a white marlin pops up and Dave gets him to eat. The fish puts on a great show but the hook pulls after a very short fight.  Decided to work back inside where the water was warmed and cleaner this morning. As we hit the 40 fathom line another white pops up in the spread but this crazy fish doesn’t seem to be hungry. He dogs a couple baits for nearly 5 minutes but never even takes a whack at one.  About 45 minutes later, as we’re clearing the spread for the run home a big wahoo grabs our long rigger and after 15 minutes and three anglers we put the 75 lb. “hoo” in the box.

08/25/13 Today’s offshore trip morphed into a flounder fishing trip thanks to some fairly stiff winds. The forecast calls for the breeze to subside by late morning so off we go. Our first drift produces three throwback and one keeper. The next couple drifts produce another keeper as well as a couple throwbacks too. By now the diminishing winds are stronger than before and we’re forced to anchor, not the best method for flounder fishing. Spent the next two hours casting and working the bottom and adding two more to the box. Ended the trip at the 5 hour point to save the charter some $$$ since the winds didn’t seem like we’d be able to drift any time soon.

I am announcing an 12 hour Open Boat Trip for mahi, tuna, wahoo & marlin on Wednesday September 18th. The trip will be limited to four people to allow maximum “rod time” per person.  The cost is $380.00 per person and this price INCLUDES gratuity for the mate and fish cleaning. You will spend NOTHING extra. Call now to reserve your spot. 

08/24/13 Today was the final straw. I agreed to cancel today’s trip based on last evenings forecast for NE winds 15 – 20 knots. This morning the flag at the marlin was laying flat and remained that way until around noon when a light breeze finally started. For this reason I will no longer be cancelling trips early based on the forecast since they’re wrong more often than they’re right.

08/23/13 Cruising east with a crew from Overhead Door Company of Lancaster. The best game in town seems to be marlin fishing so we change out our tuna hooks and throw on some circle’s. Apparently the word is our about this area because I see way more boats than normal. We sent the spread and wait for a bill to pop up within. The morning passes, the wind really increases and still no encounters. Listening to the radio chatter it seems the bite is much slower than everyone expected. Still looking for our first bite, other than a few small skipjack bites, I reel in one of the bridge rods to have a look at the bait. As we’re setting it back in place a marlin grabs the bait as I set the rod back in the holder. The fish pulls the line from the rigger clip but doesn’t take the bait. As I’m reaching for the rod the fish slashes at the bait a second time then disappears into the blue. At this point the NW winds, which weren’t in the forecast,  are very stiff making a move nearly impossible so we pound the area hard but have no other encounters.

08/21/13 Out with a family of three in flat calm conditions for a day of offshore fishing. Worked an area that has produced several marlin over our last few trips, but today, we couldn’t raise any. About two hours into the day I notice two balls in the distance so I paddle that way to check them out. The first is bare but I can see some splashing around the second. As we pull past a small mahi comes leaping into the spread. before he can get the bait a nicer fish comes tight on one of our flat lines. A few seconds later a very nice fish grabs our mid-rigger. A few minutes later we have our first two fish on the box. About the same time I get a call from a fellow capt. telling me of a little yellowfin bite going on where he is. The family decides to make the 10 mile run. A few minutes after we arrive there’s a huge explosion on one of our spreader bars but the fish misses the hook. The next few “boils” I suspect are small skipjack tunas. Finally there’s another huge blast and we have Mike’s first yellowfin on the line. Fifteen minutes later Dave puts the 45 lb. fish in the box. While all this action was happening we didn’t take notice to the increase in the breeze. Wishing to avoid a choppy ride home for their youngster the parents decide to call it a day and head back.

08/20/13 Ran east with a crew of five looking for a few bites. Worked the 50 fa. line south producing a couple mahi bites, two of which made it in the box. Sometime around 9 a white marlin pops up on our squid chain. Dave tries to get his attention with our circle hook rig but the white is in love with our chain. Finally, he turns to Dave’s bait, smacks it once and then grabs a tuna bait. Dave quickly feeds him that bait and we have this crews first ever marlin hooked-up. Fifteen minutes later we release him at the boat. About 30 minutes later the charter asks if we could go after the fish we caught yesterday, Golden Tilefish.  We run 10 mile and sink the baits to the bottom. I can’t believe it, these buggers aren’t biting. A couple perfect drifts and only a few bites.  Perhaps the full moon and cloudy skies have killed our chances at landing any of these “oh so tasty” fish. First time I ever remember getting skunked when fishing for tiles.

08/19/13 Headed to the deep to fish some gear a buddy of mine found a couple days ago.  Before we even got close to where the gear was to be, a blue marlin grabs our long rigger and take off running. Unfortunately, the blue threw the hook in mid-flight. Continued east to the numbers I was given only to find the gear must have been hauled and reset elsewhere. With a few hours already wasted, the guys ask if we could do some deep-dropping. Ran north to my tilefish hole and sent the rigs down 700′. Current was HORRIBLE and nearly 3 lbs. of lead was needed to grab bottom. The fish were chewing but the guys were having trouble knowing when to strike. Managed to put four nice goldens in the box before it was time to head home.

08/18/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

08/17/13 Today’s inshore trolling trip decided to throw in a few extra bucks for fuel to allow us to get to the area I was working yesterday. Unfortunately, at the 20 mile mark the seas forced us to scrap those plans and hang within the standard 20 mile range. Worked some sea bass pot markers looking for a mahi bite but like nearly all the inshore gear this season it didn’t seem to be holding any fish. With a little less than two hours left to fish our long rigger takes off and a few minutes later the mate sinks the gaff in a 44 lb. wahoo. Ended the day without any other bites but the crew from NY was thrilled to have wahoo steaks to head home with, especially in today’s rough conditions.

08/16/13 Today found me searching the boat for Bill Murray since it seemed Fin Chaser was staring in a remake of the movie Groundhog Day. The day started exactly as yesterday. One mahi goes in the box, then a white marlin decides to tease us for a while. We troll through a sixty minute dry spell and then several white marlin figure it’s time to prove that our southern style tuna hooks aren’t the hot ticket for marlin. Mixed in white these whites were a couple nice gaffer mahi which our hooks had no problems grabbing. By the days end we were 0 for 5 on whites and 4 for 4 on mahi.

08/15/13 Out with Emmy the marlin slayer and her dad. Ten minutes after setting the spread we have a mahi in the box. Our next bite comes about twenty minutes later when a white marlin decides he wants to play with our long bait. Worked that area for another 45 minutes without a pull so we picked up and ran another 10 miles east. Fifteen minutes after resetting the spread we have two more mahi in the box. Swung around for another pass but before any mahi could pile on a 200 lb. blue marlin crushes our mid-rigger. This fish puts on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, literally doing a 360 around the boat with jumps before deciding to run anyway at 100 mph. The fight lasted 20 minutes and Emmy did great but with a sneaky move that I just wasn’t able to keep up with he breaks the line against the forward hull. The next couple hours see’s a couple more mahi and a white marlin that pulls drag for a couple seconds but doesn’t take the hook. Back in the slip with 8 mahi in the box and great memories of a beautiful blue marlin.

08/14/13 Rescheduled to 8/29 due to rough conditions.

08/13/13 Looking for some “meat” with a crew from northeast PA. Looked all over, even “radio fished” , but just couldn’t find anything or any reports worth running to. By the days end we have two gaffer mahi in the box.

08/12/13 Last minute cancel due to an illness in the charters family.

08/11/13 Stopped at some flounder bottom 13 miles of our inlet. Several drifts yielded three “throwbacks” and one keeper. Picked-up and ran 12 miles to the east looking fr some keeper sea bass. Bile was good and we were even able to put several keepers in the box. Sent this family of six back to PA with a nice mess of very tasty fillets.

08/10/13 Today’s 10 hr. trip started with a question to the guys. If each man were to throw in an extra $25 we would have the budget & time to run to the canyon. Unfortunately, the crew decided against that idea so we headed off to do our best with the limited fuel and time. After 33 miles we threw out the spread. The next several hours found me looking at all the usual haunts but the green cool water didn’t seem to be holding any fish. With a couple hours left in the day the guys ask if we could run back to the wrecks and try for some sea bass. I tell them sure, but all we have for bait it bally and that’s certainly not the bait of choice for wreck fishing. Spent about an hour drifting for bass with only a few bites. Guess these fish are spoiled with squid, clams and shrimp because they wanted no parts of our ballyhoo.

08/09/13 Rescheduled to mid-September.

08/08/13 Out with Ginger the flounder slayer and her crew from PA. Ran over 30 mile north to a deep wreck which I was sure would give up some great sea bass. Was horrified to find nothing but an epic bergall bite. After catching way too many bergalls and only one sea bass we decided to make an 8 mile run to some other structure. Sixty minutes pass and it’s obvious, the fish just aren’t interested today. Worked hard and moved all around but the it didn’t make much difference. I’ve never burnt 70 gallons of fuel on a wreck trip, today I did. Can’t remember the last full day of wreck fishing that only yielded a dozen fish, but that was today’s number in the box when we returned.

08/07/13 Turned back after less than a mile due to rough conditions.

08/06/13 Ran 30 mile south in search of some “keeper” sea bass. Bite was steady, not red hot, but steady, and the size, wow!  Some dandy knot heads were going in the box. By the time it was time to roll we had 45 sea bass, 1 ling and a couple big bergalls in the box. Now that’s some fine eating!

08/05/13 Out with some of the nicest folks you’d want to spend a day with. Hit the inlet and was greeted by a stiff north winds. Made it to the last marker before asking them if they want to turn back. They decided to give it a go but say with-in the 5 hour trip limits in case the wind doesn’t lay-out. First drift immediately puts a flounder in the box. Unfortunately, that was the highlight of the day. The drift/current was so crazy we were using 16 oz. to hold bottom in 70 ft. of water. Tried every trick I know of and every bait combo in the cooler but their jaws just wouldn’t open. Back in the slip with an embarrassing two fish in the box. Fortunately, this crew really didn’t seem to mind. They just like fishing, even when it’s not catching.

08/03/13 Ran to the bluefin hill on a report of three which were caught yesterday. Trolled all over without a pull. Even pulled right through the chunking fleet and didn’t see anyone doing battle so we decided to pick-up and make a 12 mile run to the east. Came upon some new gear and was able to put a dozen mahi in the box with light tackle. With two hours left in the day the guys ask to run to bluefin  hill and make a few drifts with “chunks”. After two drifts with no action it was time to roll.

08/02/13 Running east with a crew of four, one of which happens to be the son-in-law of the previous owner of my boat. Arrived at some bottom gear in 60 fathoms looking for the mahi. Spent a few hours going ball-to-ball with light tackle filling the box with mahi. The numbers weren’t as good as a couple days ago but good enough to hit our limit before the late night, lack of sleep and early leave took there toll on three of the guys.

08/01/13 Last minute cancel.

07/31/13 Out with a super crew from West Chester, PA. Threw-out the spread after 50 miles. The first hour yielded two mahi and one skipjack. Shortly after that we happened upon some long-line gear that was holding mahi. Pulled in the trolling baits and broke-out the light tackle. The rest of the day was an absolute blast going ball-to-ball and crushing the mahi. With 15 minutes left in the day the magic number was hit. We even put a few in the box for the crew. Back in the slip with 47 in the box.

07/30/13 Two half-day trips found decent flounder action on the AM trip as well as a good sea bass bite, be it most were throwbacks, on the second trip. Total combined keepers were 8 flounder and 10 sea bass.

07/29/13 Out with a couple from MD for a day of offshore action. After spending about an hour working the big hill for bluefin, I decide to work back inshore a couple miles and look at another smaller hill these fish will hide on. Just before we go up the hill our short rigger get nailed, a couple minutes later we put a 20 lb. yellowfin in the box. A couple passes over the hill and we have a 65 lb. bluefin in the box too. Looking for something our lady angler can crank on we troll south looking for a mahi or two. Spent the last couple hours working a small area on the 30 fathom line and going 1 of 2 on mahi as well as adding two more small yellowfin to the box.

07/28/13 Looking for fish with a crew who did not want to chunk for bluefin. After trying to get a bite among the chunking fleet without any success we run east looking for some gear that was present the last two years. The bottom gear is gone but I spot a long line set and work those balls which yields a couple bites and a few mahi in the box. Troll back inside to a few hills just south of the bluefin hole and manage to capture one more mahi and a small yellowfin.

07/27/13 Cancelled due to a broken throttle cable.

07/26/13 Today began at 2:30 am standing at the inlet calling the guys and telling them the wind has layed-out but the ocean’s still angry so I think we should wait a while before heading out.  At 7 am we head out with bait on board for flounder fishing as well as tuna bait if we decide to keep rolling east. After 16 miles I as the guy what they’d like to do, flounder is the call. Spent a few hours drifting for those tasty flatties but dirty water and cold temps really put a damper on the bite. After 4 hours we had 7 fish in the box as well as releasing some that were just under the limit.

07/25/13  Less than two miles outside the inlet I stopped the boat, made a speech, and offered the guys a refund if they wanted to turn back. After a brief discussion among themselves they told me to head back.  I must give these guys Appolo, PA a shout-out. They insisted Dave and I take some $$$ for our time, effort and honesty.

07/24/13 Spent a few hours today with the crew from Monday, plus two more Jr. anglers, drifting for flounder & sea bass. Bite was OK, not great, but OK. We even managed to put a few keepers in the box. At the end of the five hour trip we had four flounder to 23″ and a few sea bass in the box.

07/23/13 Another day at the bluefin grounds with a crew of four from DC. Arrived to find a few other boats working the area, but nothing seemed to be happening. Worked among the other boats for about an hour with no success, nor did I see any other boats hooked-up either. Decided to move over to a hill that sometimes hold fish too. Within 10 minutes of arriving at our new spot, our long rigger gets crushed. Twenty minutes later we have a 85 lb. bluefin in the box. A couple more passes ads a nice 15 lb. mahi too. The next pass sees two explosions on our baits but both tuna miss. Another turn and our long gets nailed again. This fish requires two anglers and eventually the 60 lb. bluefin makes it in the box too. While all this action was going on the winds came up from 15 knots to what I’m sure is 25+ and the seas, steep and tall. With one of the college aged anglers feeling horrible, the crew decides to call it a day early and head for the barn. A little friendly advice; ignoring the Dramamine suggestion and eating cold pizza for breakfast, is a recipe for disaster offshore.

07/22/13 Ran east looking for a bluefin with the owner of Galaxy 66 Bar & Restaurant and a few family members of her’s. My plan was to look for a bluefin(s) and then run to where we had our mahi  bites the day before. Unfortunately, the bluefin bite was off today and after spending two hours working the hill and only hearing of a couple caught among nearly two dozen boats I decided to run to the grounds we fished yesterday. Worked all over but just couldn’t find the water or the fish we had on Sunday. All we could manage was a 15 lb. bull mahi as well as having a very nice( looked to be 20+) mahi throw the hook while jumping.

07/21/13 Out with a crew of guys from north Philly. The morning was slow, to say the least. Finally, around 11 am, the fish started to bite. The action during the next couple hours was fairly steady with a mix of mahi and wahoo bites. When it was finally time to clear the lines we had four nice “gaffer” mahi and one small wahoo in the box.

07/20/13 Turned back after 3 miles due to rough conditions that were missing in NOAA’s forecast.

07/19/13 A little bluefin action with a family of five from Allentown, PA Our first encounter sees two rods get hit, one comes tight and one doesn’t. After 20 minutes and two anglers, we put a 75 bluefin in the box. Our next bite completely missed the bait. The action slows so I troll north toward a group of boats working another hill. Just before reaching them we get jumped again by two fish. Like before, one comes tight, one doesn’t. A few minutes later we put a 50 lb. “under” in the boat. With our bluefin limit reached, we decide to look elsewhere to see if we can find something else. Two hours later and only one “knock down” the family decided to call it a day which make one girl on board very happy since she has been battling the dreaded illness for the past few hours.

07/18/13 Out with a crew from Berks Co. PA for a day of tuna fishing. First bite too nearly 90 minutes after moving slightly north of where we’ve been fishing over the past few days. We put the first 75 lb. bluefin in the box. The next few hours produce two other fish. However, one was lost 40 feet from the boat when the leader chaffed through. Tried hard to find a “under” but didn’t have any luck.

07/17/13 Another early morning finds us at the bluefin grounds. The spread is set, five minutes later we have our first fish of the day. After a nice fight, the 80 lb. tuna goes in the box.  As Dave is resetting the spread I throw the boat in gear. I doubt we went 200 yards and we have a second fish on.  Another great fish and the fish is released. By this time a handful of boats have arrived. Enough to shut down the bite? I didn’t think so but it seemed to turn out that way. The next few hours produced only “boils” at the baits. It’s like the fish were just window shopping. Finally one crashes our short rigger spreader bar. Another epic battle and the bluefin is released to fight another day. Spent the rest of the day looking for a “under” but just couldn’t find one.

07/16/13 The MD DRN crew from Easton wants to go monster hunting. Not interested in bluefin, yellowfin or mahi, these guys wannna lock horns with a “eyeball” aka big eye tuna. Ran 60 mile south and threw out the spread. Two minutes later we have a small mahi in the box. The next few hours are spent working the bait around the pilot whales. Finally, in the middle of a turn, our long bait gets crushed. Handing the rod down from the bridge I can feel this is a serious fish and tell the guys I think they just got their wish. Two and a half hours and requiring all the guys twice on the rod we have a gaff in the 225 lb. big eye. This was truly a team effort since the fish went deep, got tail wrapped and died. We had to work him up from what I guess was 800 feet.

07/15/13 Another day on the bluefin grounds found a slow pick on mahi in the morning but no tuna bites. Finally around 9:30 our long rigger gets slammed. After a good battle, we put a 75 lb. bluefin in the box. Looked all over the rest of the day but only found another “gaffer” mahi. I looked sound and should have looked north. Capt. Todd moved north and found the bluefin on a northern hill. Back in the slip with one bluefin and five mahi in the box.

07/14/13 Out today with the FedEx Ground King’s crew of Media, PA . Baits hit the water early as everyone expects stupid amounts of boat traffic today. Our first fish takes about 45 minutes and the guessing starts, bluefin or yellowfin. Turns out to be a 35 lb. yellowfin. Our next bite comes after another 20 minutes. We put a second 40 lb. yellowfin in the box.  At this point I’m feeling kinda good about the day even with the minute by minute increasing numbers of boats arriving at the hill. Well, that feeling didn’t last very long and neither did our bites. Looked all over the rest of the day but all we could manage was one more knock-down.

07/13/13 Another super early leave pays off for this crew from MD & NJ.  The baits go out, twenty minutes later our mid-rigger get nailed. After a fantastic fight, Dave stick the gaff into the 85 lb. bluefin. The next few explosions miss the bait. Finally a bluefin with good vision smashes our short rigger. Fifteen minutes later we put the 65 lb. bluefin in the box. Our next fish is about the same size as the first fish we killed and is released at the boat. All this action is drawing quite a crowd and soon there are way too many boats working the same little area and the bite dies. The next two hours produce nothing so the guys decide to head in early allowing them plenty of time for the drive back to north Jersey with a cooler full of bluefin loins.

07/12/13 Broke the inlet at 3:30 am in horrible fog and heavy storms ahead. Zigzagged most of the 45 miles to the grounds avoiding small pockets of heavy rain. The baits hit the water around 6:00 and we start looking. About forty-five minutes later there’s a huge boil on our short rigger followed by an explosion on our mid rigger, both fish miss the baits. I swing around and our long rigger gets nailed and we put a 10 lb. mahi in the box. Another pass and another hook-up. Thinking we have a smaller bluefin on we’re happily surprised when Dave see’s those golden yellow fins and we put a 30 lb. yellowfin in the box. My next pass yields the same results, another 30 lb. yellowfin for the guys. The next 90 minutes see two more yellowfin added to the box with several other fish that missed the baits. By this point other boats have noticed me working this small area and move in for the kill. Unfortunately, it is the bite that gets killed. Spent the next two hours searching for a bluefin with only one knock-down. Sometime around 11 they guys tell me to head for the barn. Back in the slip early with four yellowfin to 40 lbs. and one mahi.

07/11/13 The two remaining guys from the original crew of 4 had to cancel  today due to lack of $$.

07/10/13 Headed east with a crew from Lancaster County PA who didn’t care that it was to be quite nautical today. Arrived at the tuna grounds to find 20 knot winds and fairly steep seas. First fish came with-in 10 minutes. After a great battle involving two anglers the 75 lb. fish is released next to the boat. Why, you ask, these guys are looking for “the one”. Our next fish comes twenty minutes later and brings two more anglers to their knees. Same size as the first fish, it too is released. After nearly an hour, two fish explode on our right rigger baits. One come tight and one doesn’t. After an epic fight involving two anglers we put the 105 lb. bluefin in the box. The guys are pointing at each other saying “you fight the next fish, not me”. After a brief discussion among themselves, the guys tell me to head for the slip.

07/09/13 Last minute cancellation.

07/08/13 Hit the bluefin grounds with high hopes for another great trip. Spent the morning looking all over with no luck. Where the heck did these fish go, and where’d the bait go too???? With a few hours left to fish in this 10 hour trip a fellow capt. gives me a call and tells me the bite has moved 4 miles south. By the time I got there most of the bite was done. Gave the guys an extra hour but had nothing to show for our efforts.

07/07/13 Another very early leave for the Fin Chaser. Dave sets the spread at 6:15. Sometime around 7 there’s a huge explosion on our short rigger but the fish completely missed the bait. Twenty minutes later we have another fish on our long rigger. This crazy bluefin is acting more like a wahoo than a tuna, racing from one side of the boat to the other. Dave gets the fish under control and we put the 135 pounder in the box. The next couple bites don’t come tight so I make a pass right through the middle of the area and “wham”, our long get hit again. This fish doesn’t seem to have the steam of the others, and to our surprise, we put a 55 lb. bluefin (under) in the box. Fifteen minutes later our long gets whacked again. After a good fight the 100 lb. fish is released to fight another day. Since everyone has had a turn on the rod and no one wants a second go the decision is made to try for some sea bass. Much to our disappointment the sea bass must have taken the day off. With  over $2000 of bluefin loins in the box the crew decides to call it a day a little early.

07/06/13 Left super early today looking for that first light bluefin bite. Lines hit the water at 6:10 and by 6:30 we have our first bluefin hooked-up. These fish are just plain wicked and this one’s giving my anglers fits. After 30 minutes and three anglers the fish is lost to slack line during an angler change. The next fish is hooked 20 minutes later. After a 45 minute fight involving four anglers we have the 195 lb. stud on the gaff. The guys were absolutely thrilled with their fish and didn’t care to battle another, I was told to head for the slip.

07/05/13 Today began with several options given to this 8.5 hour trips crew. After some debate the decision was made to run 20 mile south and look around one of our inshore bluefin haunts, then troll south toward a deeper wreck for some sea bass fishing. We arrived at the wreck with nothing to show for our trolling efforts. Fortunately, the sea bass action made us quickly forget about the lacking troll bite. Keepers were the norm instead of the exception, and some fine ones at that. Back in the slip with 50 in the box.

07/03/13 Trucking east toward the Baltimore Canyon when I get a report of very rough conditions in the deep and a possible bluefin bite nearby. Turned hard and pointed south. Threw-out the spread around 7 am.  Thirty minutes later I came to an area where “things just looked right”. Our first fish comes 15 minutes later, a stinkin’ chopper bluefish. Thirty minutes later I run over some great marks so I throw the boat into a turn and like clockwork the way back gets slammed. After a tedious 45 minute fight involving two anglers we have a 125 lb. bluefin in the box. At this point I’m told NO one on board wants to lock horns with another bluefin so I asked to look for anything else. We switch the spread to a yellowfin look but we’re really not in great yellowfin waters at this point. About an hour later the crew decides to see if the sea bass want to play. Spent a couple hours jerkin’ on some sea bass before he guys decide to call it a day early.

07/02/13 I am so sick of this wind! Today was to be a offshore trip but that plan was quickly scrapped when I took a swing around the inlet prior to arriving at the boat. Call the crew and gave them the news as well as two offers, a refund of their deposit or a short trip close to the beach. Guys really wanted to wet a line so we headed to a nearby wreck for a few hours. Bite was fairly slow although fish were caught and empty hooks, a regular occurrence. Back in the slip with just enough in the box for “fish taco’s”.

07/01/13 Last minute cancellation.

06/30/13 Rescheduled to a later date due to high winds and rough seas.

06/29/13 Today’s winds forced us to hang much closer to the beach than I would have liked, but this crew of old friends just wanted to spend a little time on the water, keepers really didn’t matter. The sea bass bite was good, the size, not so much. Turned our attention to tog and found a very good bite. With about an hour left in the day the tog shut down. Fortunately, friendly conversation helped pass that last hour.

06/28/13 Rescheduled to a later date due to high winds and rough seas.

06/27/13 Ran 15 mile south with a crew of four looking from some sea bass and tog. Sea Bass bite was OK with a few keepers making it in the box. The tog bite was surprisingly good, even put a couple in the box. Sent the guys back to PA with enough  for a real nice fish fry.

06/26/13 Spent a little time this morning looking for an inshore trolling bite with a crew of four from PA. Warned the guys we may want to forget the trolling portion of the day and spent that time running to big sea bass grounds, but this crew really wanted to try some trolling. After two hours without a sniff, we jumped on some nearby bottom and started playing with the sea bass. Keepers were few and far between which was no surprise to the guys since I warned them this bottom is not as good as the bottom we’ve been fishing the last several trip. Back in the slip with a bakers dozen in the box.

06/25/13 Today was to be a combo bluefin troll/wreck fishing trip but after explaining to the father of the family from NY how lousy the inshore trolling bite has been, he decided to go scrap the trolling portion, smart move. Ran quite a way north and found a very steady bite. Did see a few more throw-backs than the last few days but still had a very respectable keeper to throwback ratio. Big fish of the day was Kory’s 12 lb. cod, the biggest we’ve had in years. Back in the slip with 35 mouth watering fish in the box.

06/24/13 Ran north with a crew of five from Bedford, PA who wanted to try their hand at sea bass fishing. Morning bite was steady but slowed by around 10 am. Our second drop added a few more very nice fish to the box but it too slacked off after an hour of fishing. Sometime around 11 am the “long evil fruit” (aka: banana) made its first appearance of the year. With-in 30 minutes the wind went from nearly nothing to 15 knots. Decided to try one more piece before heading for home. This drop was the stuff dreams are made of. I haven’t seen sea bass fishing like this in years.The average size of the fish hitting the deck was incredible.  By 12:45 the wind was cranking @20 knots and it was time to leave this epic bite. Hauling the anchor turned-out to be quite a chore. We struggled for nearly 20 minutes bringing up not only the anchor, but a huge piece of wreck too……remember that banana. Back in the slip with 65 sea bass and ling in the box.

06/23/13 Took a crew of five from MD for a day of trolling and wreck action. Spent about two hours on some northern hills looking for a bluefin bite which never happened. Turned our attention to sea bass around 9 am. The bite was good with some very nice size males going in the box. Also had a few very nice ling and one 24″ atlantic cod. Ended the day a little early due to increasing winds and pending storms.

06/22/13 Out with a crew from Wenger Feeds of PA for a day of tuna action. Our first attack saw four rods go down. We knew immediately these fish were not keepers and all were released. The issue with small fish has plagued the fleet all week. Shortly after that the fog rolled in and everyone’s bites stopped. The sun finally broke through and so did the bites. The next few attacks only yield one “blt” (barely legal tuna) for the box. Worked a little area during the afternoon and managed to find a few more fish, two of which made it in the box. Back in the slip with three “blt’s” in the box. Kinda embarrassing but after talking to a few other boats I felt much better about our day compared to many.

06/21/13 Ran north with a JR and his crew looking to fill the box with sea bass. Bite was spotty at our first stop but that changed at our second drop. Fish were hungry, and the size, very respectable for this time of the season. Also managed a couple nice ling too. One of the guys was putting on a conger eel catching clinic, I swear he must have caught four of five of these nasty buggers. Back in the slip with 60 fish in the box.

06/20/13 Today started with lots of phone calls and what seemed like a Laurel & Hardy comedy act. Long story short; the guys were on the wrong boat and just about ready to pull out of the slip when I called. Finally broke the inlet an hour late running for our inshore trolling/wreck grounds. Arrived at the hill only to find cold green water and no bait. Trolled for about an hour before recommending to the guys we head for the wrecks. The sea bass action was very good and the size, respectable. By early afternoon, with sore arms, they had plenty in the box and called it a day. Back in the slip with 35 sea bass ready for the fillet table.

06/19/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

06/18/13 Ran 55 miles east with a crew of five from NY who were adamant they didn’t want to troll, they wanted to deep drop. Our first stop was in 600′ of water. The current was flying out of the north and the guys needed 3 lbs. of lead to hold bottom. First few golden tilefish came fairly quickly, then, the bites slowed drastically. After a while the guys were asking about running inshore a few miles and look for some jumbo sea bass. I convinced them to let me try one other nearby hole. With-in five minutes of the new drop, all four rods in the water were hooked-up. Three looked to be respectable fish. But one  looked to hung on bottom even though one of the anglers, as well as the mate, told me they saw the bite. I was just about ready to do the unthinkable when suddenly the angler was able to gain a few cranks on the reel and the fight was on. Twenty minutes later the 54 lb. monster golden tilefish breaks the surface. Spent the rest of the day working this piece of bottom and by days end we had 15 golden tilefish and 1 rosebelly in the box. Back in the slip we find out that we have the heaviest tilefish of the year so far, nice!

06/17/18 Out for a day of wreck action with a crew of six from Baltimore. Day was pretty nice, but thanks to a little too much fun the night before, three of the crew never made it out of the cabin. The remaining three had a very nice day putting plenty of sea bass in the box for a super size fish fry for everyone.

06/16/13 Today was to be a canyon trip for tuna, but thanks to the forecast for the offshore winds to hit 25 knots out of the sw, we decided to hang a little closer to the beach and look for mr. bluefin or some false albacore, aka:turkey. Looked all over in some ugly green water but couldn’t find any bluefin. Did manage a few turkeys which Mr. Wang and his guys were happy with.

06/15/13 Ran east to the Baltimore Canyon looking for the fish. The morning was slow, boats were scattering trying to find a bite. We were pulling 10 rods but still had room for one more in the spread. I decided to go “old school” and throw out a set of cedar plugs tight to the transom. Less than 30 minutes later we get hit by the yellowfin. Five rods go down and one by one the fish make it to the boat. Problem is these are the small guys and only one is of legal size. Still lots of fun for the charter. The next attack is about 45 minutes later. This time six rods go down and immediately the lines get crossed into a big tangle. By the time the mess is straightened out, one tuna has already thrown the hook and another is lost in mid fight. Two make it in the box, both around 30 lbs. The last fish is less than two feet from the gaff when one of the guys knocks the drag button and the fish takes off and throws the hook. About 30  minutes later we get jumped by a pair but only one comes tight and this is a better class fish. After a great battle, the mate has the 65 lb. fish on the gaff. Back in the slip with four yellowfin in the box and a very happy bunch of guys. Oh, about that “old school” fishing, those cedar plugs were the first thing to get hit all three times.

06/13/13 & 06/14/13 cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

06/12/13 Our first offshore trip of the season found us running south in hopes of finding some yellowfin. The bite was great two days ago, but numbers were kinda poor yesterday. Looked all over the washington canyon but could not get a tuna bite. Heard of a few caught, but not many at all. Did manage a nice mahi for one of the boys on board, his first. Pulled in lines an headed home with only one fish in the box. Seems one mahi was the quota for Fisherman’s Marina boats. Four boats fished today from our marina. Three of us wound-up with one mahi, one other boat didn’t have a pull.

06/11/13 Out with a repeat customer from OH for a day of sea bass and tog fishing. Conditions were right sporty for this single person charter. Anchored more times than I care to remember since the drift was way too fast, even 12 oz. wouldn’t allow us to hold bottom. Bite was spotty, good for 30 minutes then nothing. Repeated the process all day. Sent Donnie home with a nice bag of sea bass fillets as well as a bag of tog from his beautiful 6 lb. white chin.

06/10/13 Out with three Penguins fans from western PA for a day of sea bass action. The morning bite was good, even managed to put a few in the box. Would have loved to drift like the day before but conditions just wouldn’t allow it.  Bite slowed around 11 and absolutely died by noon.

06/09/13 Out for a day of shark fishing with a birthday boy and his crew from Easton, MD. The day was beautiful, calm seas and no wind. Unfortunately, we had no current or drift either. In four hours of drifting we only covered 1.25 miles, horrible! Our chum was simply falling straight to the bottom. By thirteen hundred we had only released a 60 lb. dusky and had two other bites that didn’t come tight so we decided to make a short run and see if the sea bass wanted to play. The bite was good and the size was OK too. Sent the crew home with a nice little catch of those “oh so tasty” fish.

06/08/13 First shark trip of the year. We’re greeted by weather that is much better than the forecast is calling for. Baits hit the water and the wait begins. After about 90 minutes drifting in all kinds of crazy directions we have our first shark in the line. The 60 lb. dusky is released after a short battle. Almost immediately we have another shark messing with a bait but after a 15 second run the shark drops the bait and doesn’t return. The next few hours see’s more clouds and only a few bites. Shortly after noon a big thresher grabs our floater and the fish is on. After about 20 minutes the main line breaks for no apparent reason. The shark might have caught it with his giant tail. The guys decided to wrap things up a little early due to heavy rain that moved in while we were doing battle with Mr. Tail.

06/02/13 through 06/07/13 Fin Chaser will not be sailing during this period to allow my family to celebrate Trevor’s (my son and inshore mate) high school graduation with a fishing trip of our own to Beaver Island Michigan. Trevor wants to do battle with giant carp (up to 40 pounds) on fly tackle.

06/01/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

05/31/13 Broke the inlet today to find much lighter winds and seas. Ran 25 mile south to a piece of bottom that I thought we would be able to drift with today’s conditions. The fish were scattered, no huge shots at any one spot. We looked all over this piece of bottom. When I’d mark em, we’d drift em until they would shut down. Then we would look around for another shot of fish. This scenario played out over and over again today. Can’t remember the last time I had to work this hard to put a respectable catch together but we did. By the days end we had 60 sea bass in the box and a very happy crew of regulars.

05/30/13 Few are the days I set out with trepidation about the bite. Today, was one of them. Arrived at the sea bass honey hole where we were immediately slapped in the face with fairly strong winds, very choppy seas and super cold water temps . Way too sporty to drift so out went the anchor. Bite was good but the keeper ratio was horrible. Worked hard but just couldn’t manage to find any numbers of keepers. Called it a day a little early so we could get one of the guys back to solid land. This was quite possibly o ne of the worst days of bottom fishing I’ve ever had.

05/26/13 Last minute cancel.

05/25/13 Today’s five hour charter was greeted with 25 knot west winds. Offering a complete refund and my advice to avoid the angry ocean.  I told them our ONLY option would be to hug the coast and try for some tog. I also noted that sometimes tog don’t bite well when it’s this rough out. “Lets go capt.” was the cry. Managed to find a few hungry fish but all under the 16″ size limit, and with 30 knot winds, we really couldn’t look any deeper. The guys had fun and everyone caught a couple tog. As they put it ” what a great adventure”!

05/24/13 Out with a couple from northern MD for a day of sea bass and tog fishing. The sea bass bite was slow and after a few stops we decided to turn our attentions to tog. Bite started off slow but within thirty minutes the tog turned on. Unfortunately, so did the wind, which was to be west at 10-15 knots, NOT northwest at 20-25. Pulled the anchor a little early due to deteriorating conditions. In the slip with just under a dozen sea bass and one tog shy of our limit.

05/22/13 & 05/23/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas

05/21/13 Out with a family of five who wanna have some fun and if they can catch a few fish, even better. Conditions were MUCH better than the last two days and the bite was better too. Back in the slip with a bakers dozen sea bass, a couple of them are nice big knot-heads.

05/20/13 Heading east in search of sea bass. Conditions are much better than yesterday until we hit the 10 mile mark, then things get a little more interesting. The anchor goes down after 18 mile and the fish are hungry. One little problem, waaaay too many throwback. Pounded the area all day looking for some size but just couldn’t find any shot of good fish. Back in the slip with 30 in the box….and one less anchor. Bottom temps are still extremely cold which may have something to do with the fishing.

05/19/13 Opening day of sea bass season and we’re greeted with strong winds and big seas. Offered the guys a refund but they wanna go fishing. At the 1 mile mark I ask they if they want to scrap the idea….nope. At the 8 mile mark they decide not to go any farther and try some inshore wreck. The wind and seas continued to build while we struggled to get bites. Threw a final offer to the guy; ditch the 8 hour trip and make it a 5 hour instead. This offer got more bites than most of our baits, and shortly after noon we’re back in the slip with a dismal catch. One tog and a handful of sea bass.

05/18/13 Same crew as yesterday looking for some tog for the freezer. The bite was kinda weird. They’d chew good for the first 15-20 minutes at every piece, then turn off. Seemed every piece was good for one or two keepers as well, no more than that. Moved around a lot trying to keep these guys on the bite. With 45 minutes left in the day we hit our limit. Big fish of the day was a beautiful 11 lb. white chin.

05/17/13 Out with a crew of great guys down from NY for some tog fishing. Morning bite was very good with several legal females released since they hadn’t spawned-out yet. The bite slacked-off for about two hours but came back shortly after noon. This crew did manage two note worthy tog 9 & 10 lbs.

05/14/13 A four hour afternoon trip with a super nice couple from PA down for “hot rod week”. Ran north and found great tog action on a small piece close to the beach. Most of the fish were running 14 – 15″ but we did manage a few (4) keepers the largest of which was 5 lb.

05/13/13 Out with a crew of monster tog hunters from NY. First stop produced good action and several legal fish. But this crew wasn’t interested in 16 – 17″ fish, they wanted monsters, so the keepers were thrown back. Spent the rest of the day jumping from wreck to wreck looking for togzilla and dealing with the worst current of the entire season. By the days end, we had 9 in the box. The largest of which was just under 6 lb. Kinda late in the season for monster tog.

05/12/13 A mother’s day tog fishing extravaganza for this family of four from MD. Morning bite was far less than extravagant. After a few moves that only produced throwback size fish, I decided to give the piece we started on a second go. Sitting on the exact same spot as earlier we found great action and much better size.  By days end, we were one fish shy of our limit.

05/11/12 Cancelled at the weatherman’s advice. Should have ignored him, perfectly fishable day.

05/08/13 Out for a few hours of toggin’ with a crew of four from Stryker Medical in somewhat lumpy conditions. Bite was good but the size class wasn’t. After a couple hours the rolling waves started taking their toll on two of the anglers so we decided to call it a day.

05/03/13 through 05/07/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

04/28/13 Same crew as yesterday plus another friend of theirs, Mike. Decided to look for togzilla on a small wreck that has produced some big fish in the past. Bite was rather slow with only a few keepers making the box in the first two hours. Suddenly, Joe gets hit by the real thing and puts a 9 lb. fish in the box. Thirty minutes later, Mike gets hit. Sure to be a double digit fish by the bend in the rod. Half-way up, the fish pulls the hook. A little while later, Mike gets slammed again. This time the fish wraps up in something high and cuts the line. Another double digit  lost. With ninety minutes left in the day we decide to give up on the monsters and look for dinner. While running for a piece that sits right up against the beach I decide to try a different one that should yield some keepers but might hold the big one too.  Fifteen minutes after dropping anchor we have several keepers in the box. With 20 minutes left in the day, Joe yells for the net. I see the fish briefly before it make a second run to the bottom. Joe keeps steady pressure and ultimately wins the battle. This 14 lb. tog clinches Joe’s trifecta , a three day sweep of the heaviest fish pool $$$.

04/27/13 Out with some of the same crew as yesterday plus two who drove down over night. Decided to run south looking for some size. Found a great bite but way too many “shorts”. Worked had all day but just couldn’t find many keepers. Back in the slip with 12 tog in the box on of which is “Bucktail Joe’s” 10 pounder.

04/26/13 Ran north with a crew of tog fishermen from NY & NJ looking for the hot bite. First wreck produced three keepers and a couple throw-backs. The next three stops held similar results with some sea bass mixed in. Last stop of the day produced the best action adding several fish to the box and yielding the two largest tog of the day, both slightly over 7 lbs. Back in the slip three tog shy of our limit.

04/20/13 Out for a little 4 hour trip with a family from Japan. With-in thirty seconds of the baits hitting the bottom I knew we were in for a treat. Three empty hooks and two anglers doing battle. The next few hours was truly epic for these tog fishing newbies. Fish, or bare hooks,  were coming up left and right.  The kids, ages 8, 8 & 10 were putting on a “tog catching clinic”. When the bell sounded we had 19 in the box, all but one being over 17″. We had also released a few dozen more a couple of which were 5 – 7 lb. females loaded with roe.

04/14/13 Our 2013 season started today with a ½ day tog trip with a crew of younger generation anglers, three guys and two gals. While explaining the nuances of tog fishing, I warned the guys that ladies can be formidable opponents when it comes to tog fishing. This was met with much skepticism. The bite was good, even great for one. For the others, not so much. By the end of  the trip the gals had out-fished the guys 15 to 4. Sent the crew of five back to northern DE with enough tog for a nice back yard fish fry.

2013 Reports

11/13/13 FYI Our season will continue through mid-December fishing for Tog, Sea Bass & Striper (aka:Rockfish). Stay tuned to our Facebook & website pages for news about the new Fin Chaser which will be ready for action this spring.

11/11/13 Out for a few hours of tog fishing with a crew of three. Today was to be a sea bass trip but the forecast winds forced us to hang very tight to the beach. The bite started off slow but built to a steady pick. Lots of 15″ fish were going back but we also managed to put together a decent little catch for only a few hours of fishing. Back in the slip with 8 in the box the largest tipping the scales at very respectable 6½ lb.

11/02/13 Ran east with a fun group of guys looking to fill the box with sea bass. Conditions were marginal with big swells but thankfully not big wind. First few drifts produced only a couple small fish and the trying to deal with the crazy south current was making matters bad. Decided to throw the hook and see what happens. Bite was steady most of the day. Way too many throw backs but a decent mixed bag of fish going in the box as well. These guys managed to catch sea bass, flounder, sea trout, triggerfish, bluefish, Atlantic bonito and a couple monster conger eels.  Back in the slip with 40 in the box, mainly sea bass.

10/24/13 Pushed this tog trip up a few day to sneak through what was to be a weather window. Unfortunately, the “afternoon” wind” arrived around 8:00 am, by 9:00,  it was seriously sporty, not the best for these tog rookies. Made a big move looking for slightly calmer waters but that dream was crushed when the winds went to 20+. Worked through some sea bass but never could get the tog going. Back in the slip with one 5 lb. tog, a 23″ redfish and one small sheepshead in the box.

10/08/13 through 10/20/13 A couple ½ day trips produced a mixed bag of Sea Bass, Tog and Sea Trout.

10/04/13 Since the chunking bite seems to be all but done I decide to run east and look for some mahi and a longfin or two. Pulled past at least 15 sets of gear and the only bites we could manage were “micro’s”, too small to even beat-up the baits. Sometime around 10:30 we hit a nice edge of warmer water. Fifteen minutes later our long rigger gets nailed by a longfin. The next few hours offer up more longfin and by 2:30, we have seven fat longfin in the box. Sure would have been nice to have the three other bites that didn’t come tight as well as the fish that cut us off on my rudder. Sent the crew back to DC with a cooler full of the best eating tuna in the sea.

10/03/13  Ran south for some mahi action and then a little tuna chunking to finish the day. Spent the morning working the gear but could only find about 15 small mahi interested in our baits. Spent the last two hours of the day drifting for yellowfin. Bite was slow and in order to get some bites we actually started using our wreck fishing rods since they have thin diameter braid. What a treat, battling a 30 lb. tuna on a outfit meant for sea bass. We put two respectable yellowfin in the box and had two more that didn’t come tight.

10/02/13 Out for a day of tuna chunking with a couple jersey boyz. Morning bite is horribly slow and only produces one fish. Just before noon our deep bait get nailed, less than a minute later one of our floater baits takes off too. Sure that we have two yellowfin on we’re shocked when two bills break the surface. You’ve gotta be kidding me, a double header of white marlin while chunking . Oh yea, we’re using 30 lb. leader and one of these marlin is a monster.  We land and release the first fish, a very respectable white in it’s own right, but this other fish, HUGE. 80 minutes later the fish is within gaff range and due to the fact that it’s gut hooked and exhausted from the long fish, thanks to the super light leader, we decide to harvest the fish. Because unlike the rumor that you can’t eat white marlin, it’s actually very tasty.  Back in the slip with two nice yellowfin and a 95 lb. white marlin. The largest “white” caught in OC in many years.

09/27/13 through 09/29/13 cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/25/13 Out with the FedEx crew from Media, PA for a day of offshore trolling. Found a few floating items holding decent numbers of mahi. While working that area our long rigger gets clipped by a wahoo. Thirty seconds later he slams the other rigger and this time his teeth miss the line and fifteen minutes later Dave has the 80 lb. “hoo” on the gaff.

09/24/13 Out with a crew of three from NY for a 9.5 hour trolling trip. The lines hit the water after 33 miles. After a couple miles we get jumped by……turkey’s. The rest of the day can only be described as Thanksgiving in September. More false albacore (aka: turkey) than you can imagine. And these are the “high end” turkeys not just eating our artificial lures but really taking a liking to our ballyhoo. Mixed in with the nonstop turkey action was a wahoo which cut us off, two mahi and a surprise 30 lb. yellowfin. Back in the slip with a cooler full of fish heading to Buffalo.

09/23/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions

09/20/13 & 09/21/13 Fin Chaser has been idle due to an injector pump issue.

09/19/13 Ran south today for a day of yellowfin chunking with a crew of three. Arrived at the hot spot at 8:30 and started throwing chunks. The first drift didn’t produce any bites but the next few provide steady action on yellowfin ranging in size from 25 to 40 lb.  Sometime around noon we have our yellowfin limit so we set out trolling toward the beach. About 30 minutes later a white crushes our long rigger and takes off jumping. Figuring we’d be lucky if the tuna hook holds I wasn’t too surprised when he threw the hook. Pulled in lines around 2 and started running toward the fish cleaners trying to beat the other boats. After a few miles I notice a white bucket floating and see the tell-tale golden glow under it. As I spin the boat around Dave grabs the spinners and we spend a few minutes adding a couple nice mahi to the box.

09/16/13 Today’s open boat trip left the slip at 2:30 am with plans of running 65 miles south to chunk up some yellowfin. Less than four miles down the beach is’t painfully obvious,  NOAA has blown yet another forecast. We turn back, make a quick bait switch, and head east for a day of trolling.  The forecast calls for nicer conditions the farther east you go but that’s not where we’re seeing. At the 40 mile mark I decide we’ve run far enough and the hunt begins. After two hours with nothing but a knockdown, I work toward a big hill that’s been very good this season. As we pull off the edge three rods go down with what seem like tuna’s. Much to my surprise…turkeys, which is local slang for false albacore. The rest of the day see’s regular turkey encounters as well as five mahi. One bite, which we were sure was yet another turkey, turns out to be a 35 lb. wahoo but cut us off just 10 ft. from the gaff. Oh yea, the NW winds which weren’t supposed to hit until late evening, smack us directly in the face shortly around 3 pm, making the last 10 miles to the inlet very memorable.

09/15/13  I am announcing another 12 hour Open Boat Trip for mahi, tuna, wahoo & marlin on Saturday October 5th. The trip will be limited to four people to allow maximum “rod time” per person.  The cost is $390.00 per person. This price INCLUDES gratuity for the mate and fish cleaning. You will spend NOTHING extra. Call now to reserve your spot. 

09/15/13 Out with a crew of five who opted to stay north and try for some mahi or perhaps a marlin. Well, within 45 minutes of the baits hitting the water a white marlin piles on our long rigger and after a great fight we have George’s first marlin next to the boat for pictures. After that encounter we started to work some deep gear with light tackle. The mahi bite wasn’t “red hot” but certainly steady. Fish were going in the bag and the charter really seemed to be enjoying themselves. At one set a crafty wahoo comes out of nowhere and clips off one of our hanging baits. With  less than five minutes left in the day another white grabs our long rigger but misses the hook. Back in the slip with 20 mahi and big George’s first marlin. Instead of throwing George in the water, a tradition for your first marlin, the crew decides to use a dock hose instead.

09/13/13 & 09/14/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/12/13 Ran east with a crew from MD in hopes of finding some fish to the north since a pesky south breeze wasn’t going to let us run south to where we’ve been fishing. Threw out the spread in 50 fathoms and started to work my way down a string of gear. After two hours, several balls and nothing we make a run out over the edge to 120 fathoms. The next several hours are excellent. Within 20 minutes we have a super hot white marlin on that gives the angler fits. After releasing that fish we work a small area that looks “fishy”.  Dave see’s a huge boil on my long rigger and I slowly start to bring it in then, pow, bang, wham. Five rods go down with longfin. One pulls off during the fight but we manage to put the other four in the box.  Worked that area and over the next two hours raising four more marlin and releasing two of them. On of these fish eats a bait thats hanging from the rigger 8 feet from the boat….way cool to watch that. Ended the day with three white marlin released and four of the best eating tuna out there in the box.

09/11/13 Another long run south with a couple of my “tog” regulars from NY. Morning bite was slow with a couple skipjack flurries and one yellowfin. Sometime around 11:00 I noticed birds diving several hundred yards away so I paddled over to have a look. What we found was a large bait ball with some yellowfin holding under it. Started throwing chunks and over the next ninety minutes we added 8 more yellowfin to the box. Back in the slip with 9 tunas heading to the Big Apple.

09/10/13 Today’s 14 hour trip started at 2:30 with a 66 mile run ahead of us. Lines hit the water and the hunt began. After about an hour the pilot whales started to show. Shortly after that the skipjacks started to hit. A few flurries later we’re fighting our first yellowfin of the day. The next few hours provide steady action, catch 7 or 8 skipjacks, get one yellowfin. Sometime around noon the yellowfin bite slowed so we decided to try “chunking” with cut skipjack. WOW!!! Two drifts, lasting 20 minutes each, added six more yellowfin to the box. By 1:00 we had ten yellowfin and a bunch of skipjacks in the box and decide to call it a day.

09/09/13 Rescheduled due to rough conditions.

09/08/13 Headed east with a crew from PA with a forecast that was calling for lighter winds offshore than inshore with both laying-out before increasing and shifting to NW later this evening. At the 30 mile mark things seemed to be getting worse instead of better and at 40 it was obvious that NOAA blew yet another forecast. Threw out the spread and headed toward 60 fathoms in building seas and winds. Worked that area for about 90 minutes and raised two white marlin, but the seas & winds were so tough we really couldn’t see our “pitch baits” to try and position them right in front of the fish. After getting rocked by a couple really big waves and seeing the wind already shifting to WNW, we decide to make our way back toward the 30 fathom area. With conditions still deteriorating, we shorten the trip and make our way home.

09/07/13 Ran 50 mile east with a crew of five from VA. The day provided fairly constant white marlin action. Three anglers on board caught & released their very first marlins. We also jumped off a fourth white and a small blue marlin. Thrown in with all this action were a couple marlin bites that didn’t come tight and a small gaffer mahi that made it to the box.  Our plan was to work the lobster gear but as Murphy’s Law would have it the lobster boat was out hauling his gear so we stuck with the marlin thing.

09/06/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

09/05/13 OK, yesterday, three boats, including mind, caught a combined total of 27 yellowfin tuna. Today, at the exact same location, there was one white marlin, one 12 inch, yes 12 inch blackfin tuna and a few mahi caught out of over 20 boats. HOW’S THIS POSSIBLE????  I would love to report the 64 mile run was worth it, but five mahi and four skipjacks isn’t much to brag about. Although, we were far more fortunate than many of the other boats. Wondering how a 600 foot deep fence would work….LOL.

09/04/13 Ran 64 mile south with a crew from Quarry Ridge Builders from Lancaster County PA. Morning was rough but the fishing made everyone forget about the big seas.  The action was steady, catch a few skipjack tuna’, then  a yellowfin would bite. This was the scenario throughout the entire day. Everyone had a ball jigging the baits and watching the bites. With a box full of fish, we pulled in lines early to allow extra time to make it home in the still somewhat rough seas. Back in the slip with 12 yellowfin and a pile of skipjacks.

09/03/13 Another day of flounder action with a crew of four from PA. Knew things were going to be different from yesterday when the first drift puts four in the box, one over 8 lbs. The next couple hours are truly fantastic and by 10 am we hit the magic number. With our limit in the box and our junior most angler not feeling 100% it’s time to head back to the fillet table with a box full of flounder many of which over 21″.

09/02/13 Out with a father and son duo for a day of flounder action. Well, it took less than two drifts to realize that conditions really weren’t going to us to pound the flatties. Worked around all day switching back and forth from sea bass to flounder but never found any “great shakes”.  By the end of the day we had one nice flounder and a handful of sea bass ready for the oil.

09/01/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions

08/31/13 Running east with a bachelor party of four looking for something big for the pending groom. After ninety minutes a white marlin pops-up in the spread. I pull the teaser away as Dave positions the “dink” bait right in front of fish. He turns away then turns back and takes the bait. Dave waits, then throws the drag up and the fight is on. Twenty minutes later Chris has his first marlin next to the boat. Like nearly all the other boats in the fleet the rest of our days was horribly slow. A couple buds of mine who are excellent captains went all day without a pull. Hard to think this could happen after the action we, and other boats, had yesterday. Shortly after noon the wind had come up and the reports from the boats closer to the beach claim it’s cranking 25+. The guys overhear the radio and decide to end their day early in order to get back to the campsite, grab a little sleep and enjoy the campfire into the night.

08/30/13 This morning found me running east with a crew from MD on flat calm water. Lines went in after a two hour run and the hunt commenced. About 30 minutes later something grabs the long rigger then drops the bait. A few seconds later the fish picks-up the bait again, runs a few feet and drops it. Sure that we have a white marlin messing with us I make ready for another attack but the white never comes back. Twenty minutes later a nice “gaffer” mahi jumps our mid-rigger and makes it in the box. The next two hours pass without a bite. We decide to make a 11 mile run north to look for some lobster gear. Nearly there, I hear a few guys talking about a few marlin being seen just inshore of where we’re at so we point that way. The next two hours provide plenty of marlin “shots” but these fish just would not turn off of our tuna baits. Try as we may to get these fish to switch off to our circle hook rigs they were only interested in our tuna Islander baits.

08/28/13 Back on the water after a rare vacation. The lines hit the water in 50 fathoms as I pointed the boat north. Our first bite takes about 30  minutes and puts a nice 15 lb. mahi in the box.  The next encounter sees a couple rods go down and two more mahi are added to the box. Pulled in the troll baits and broke out the light tackle and added another ten to the box. Worked my way north without any other encounters. Turned around and started to paddle south. After three miles a white marlin pops up and Dave gets him to eat. The fish puts on a great show but the hook pulls after a very short fight.  Decided to work back inside where the water was warmed and cleaner this morning. As we hit the 40 fathom line another white pops up in the spread but this crazy fish doesn’t seem to be hungry. He dogs a couple baits for nearly 5 minutes but never even takes a whack at one.  About 45 minutes later, as we’re clearing the spread for the run home a big wahoo grabs our long rigger and after 15 minutes and three anglers we put the 75 lb. “hoo” in the box.

08/25/13 Today’s offshore trip morphed into a flounder fishing trip thanks to some fairly stiff winds. The forecast calls for the breeze to subside by late morning so off we go. Our first drift produces three throwback and one keeper. The next couple drifts produce another keeper as well as a couple throwbacks too. By now the diminishing winds are stronger than before and we’re forced to anchor, not the best method for flounder fishing. Spent the next two hours casting and working the bottom and adding two more to the box. Ended the trip at the 5 hour point to save the charter some $$$ since the winds didn’t seem like we’d be able to drift any time soon.

I am announcing an 12 hour Open Boat Trip for mahi, tuna, wahoo & marlin on Wednesday September 18th. The trip will be limited to four people to allow maximum “rod time” per person.  The cost is $380.00 per person and this price INCLUDES gratuity for the mate and fish cleaning. You will spend NOTHING extra. Call now to reserve your spot. 

08/24/13 Today was the final straw. I agreed to cancel today’s trip based on last evenings forecast for NE winds 15 – 20 knots. This morning the flag at the marlin was laying flat and remained that way until around noon when a light breeze finally started. For this reason I will no longer be cancelling trips early based on the forecast since they’re wrong more often than they’re right.

08/23/13 Cruising east with a crew from Overhead Door Company of Lancaster. The best game in town seems to be marlin fishing so we change out our tuna hooks and throw on some circle’s. Apparently the word is our about this area because I see way more boats than normal. We sent the spread and wait for a bill to pop up within. The morning passes, the wind really increases and still no encounters. Listening to the radio chatter it seems the bite is much slower than everyone expected. Still looking for our first bite, other than a few small skipjack bites, I reel in one of the bridge rods to have a look at the bait. As we’re setting it back in place a marlin grabs the bait as I set the rod back in the holder. The fish pulls the line from the rigger clip but doesn’t take the bait. As I’m reaching for the rod the fish slashes at the bait a second time then disappears into the blue. At this point the NW winds, which weren’t in the forecast,  are very stiff making a move nearly impossible so we pound the area hard but have no other encounters.

08/21/13 Out with a family of three in flat calm conditions for a day of offshore fishing. Worked an area that has produced several marlin over our last few trips, but today, we couldn’t raise any. About two hours into the day I notice two balls in the distance so I paddle that way to check them out. The first is bare but I can see some splashing around the second. As we pull past a small mahi comes leaping into the spread. before he can get the bait a nicer fish comes tight on one of our flat lines. A few seconds later a very nice fish grabs our mid-rigger. A few minutes later we have our first two fish on the box. About the same time I get a call from a fellow capt. telling me of a little yellowfin bite going on where he is. The family decides to make the 10 mile run. A few minutes after we arrive there’s a huge explosion on one of our spreader bars but the fish misses the hook. The next few “boils” I suspect are small skipjack tunas. Finally there’s another huge blast and we have Mike’s first yellowfin on the line. Fifteen minutes later Dave puts the 45 lb. fish in the box. While all this action was happening we didn’t take notice to the increase in the breeze. Wishing to avoid a choppy ride home for their youngster the parents decide to call it a day and head back.

08/20/13 Ran east with a crew of five looking for a few bites. Worked the 50 fa. line south producing a couple mahi bites, two of which made it in the box. Sometime around 9 a white marlin pops up on our squid chain. Dave tries to get his attention with our circle hook rig but the white is in love with our chain. Finally, he turns to Dave’s bait, smacks it once and then grabs a tuna bait. Dave quickly feeds him that bait and we have this crews first ever marlin hooked-up. Fifteen minutes later we release him at the boat. About 30 minutes later the charter asks if we could go after the fish we caught yesterday, Golden Tilefish.  We run 10 mile and sink the baits to the bottom. I can’t believe it, these buggers aren’t biting. A couple perfect drifts and only a few bites.  Perhaps the full moon and cloudy skies have killed our chances at landing any of these “oh so tasty” fish. First time I ever remember getting skunked when fishing for tiles.

08/19/13 Headed to the deep to fish some gear a buddy of mine found a couple days ago.  Before we even got close to where the gear was to be, a blue marlin grabs our long rigger and take off running. Unfortunately, the blue threw the hook in mid-flight. Continued east to the numbers I was given only to find the gear must have been hauled and reset elsewhere. With a few hours already wasted, the guys ask if we could do some deep-dropping. Ran north to my tilefish hole and sent the rigs down 700′. Current was HORRIBLE and nearly 3 lbs. of lead was needed to grab bottom. The fish were chewing but the guys were having trouble knowing when to strike. Managed to put four nice goldens in the box before it was time to head home.

08/18/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

08/17/13 Today’s inshore trolling trip decided to throw in a few extra bucks for fuel to allow us to get to the area I was working yesterday. Unfortunately, at the 20 mile mark the seas forced us to scrap those plans and hang within the standard 20 mile range. Worked some sea bass pot markers looking for a mahi bite but like nearly all the inshore gear this season it didn’t seem to be holding any fish. With a little less than two hours left to fish our long rigger takes off and a few minutes later the mate sinks the gaff in a 44 lb. wahoo. Ended the day without any other bites but the crew from NY was thrilled to have wahoo steaks to head home with, especially in today’s rough conditions.

08/16/13 Today found me searching the boat for Bill Murray since it seemed Fin Chaser was staring in a remake of the movie Groundhog Day. The day started exactly as yesterday. One mahi goes in the box, then a white marlin decides to tease us for a while. We troll through a sixty minute dry spell and then several white marlin figure it’s time to prove that our southern style tuna hooks aren’t the hot ticket for marlin. Mixed in white these whites were a couple nice gaffer mahi which our hooks had no problems grabbing. By the days end we were 0 for 5 on whites and 4 for 4 on mahi.

08/15/13 Out with Emmy the marlin slayer and her dad. Ten minutes after setting the spread we have a mahi in the box. Our next bite comes about twenty minutes later when a white marlin decides he wants to play with our long bait. Worked that area for another 45 minutes without a pull so we picked up and ran another 10 miles east. Fifteen minutes after resetting the spread we have two more mahi in the box. Swung around for another pass but before any mahi could pile on a 200 lb. blue marlin crushes our mid-rigger. This fish puts on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen, literally doing a 360 around the boat with jumps before deciding to run anyway at 100 mph. The fight lasted 20 minutes and Emmy did great but with a sneaky move that I just wasn’t able to keep up with he breaks the line against the forward hull. The next couple hours see’s a couple more mahi and a white marlin that pulls drag for a couple seconds but doesn’t take the hook. Back in the slip with 8 mahi in the box and great memories of a beautiful blue marlin.

08/14/13 Rescheduled to 8/29 due to rough conditions.

08/13/13 Looking for some “meat” with a crew from northeast PA. Looked all over, even “radio fished” , but just couldn’t find anything or any reports worth running to. By the days end we have two gaffer mahi in the box.

08/12/13 Last minute cancel due to an illness in the charters family.

08/11/13 Stopped at some flounder bottom 13 miles of our inlet. Several drifts yielded three “throwbacks” and one keeper. Picked-up and ran 12 miles to the east looking fr some keeper sea bass. Bile was good and we were even able to put several keepers in the box. Sent this family of six back to PA with a nice mess of very tasty fillets.

08/10/13 Today’s 10 hr. trip started with a question to the guys. If each man were to throw in an extra $25 we would have the budget & time to run to the canyon. Unfortunately, the crew decided against that idea so we headed off to do our best with the limited fuel and time. After 33 miles we threw out the spread. The next several hours found me looking at all the usual haunts but the green cool water didn’t seem to be holding any fish. With a couple hours left in the day the guys ask if we could run back to the wrecks and try for some sea bass. I tell them sure, but all we have for bait it bally and that’s certainly not the bait of choice for wreck fishing. Spent about an hour drifting for bass with only a few bites. Guess these fish are spoiled with squid, clams and shrimp because they wanted no parts of our ballyhoo.

08/09/13 Rescheduled to mid-September.

08/08/13 Out with Ginger the flounder slayer and her crew from PA. Ran over 30 mile north to a deep wreck which I was sure would give up some great sea bass. Was horrified to find nothing but an epic bergall bite. After catching way too many bergalls and only one sea bass we decided to make an 8 mile run to some other structure. Sixty minutes pass and it’s obvious, the fish just aren’t interested today. Worked hard and moved all around but the it didn’t make much difference. I’ve never burnt 70 gallons of fuel on a wreck trip, today I did. Can’t remember the last full day of wreck fishing that only yielded a dozen fish, but that was today’s number in the box when we returned.

08/07/13 Turned back after less than a mile due to rough conditions.

08/06/13 Ran 30 mile south in search of some “keeper” sea bass. Bite was steady, not red hot, but steady, and the size, wow!  Some dandy knot heads were going in the box. By the time it was time to roll we had 45 sea bass, 1 ling and a couple big bergalls in the box. Now that’s some fine eating!

08/05/13 Out with some of the nicest folks you’d want to spend a day with. Hit the inlet and was greeted by a stiff north winds. Made it to the last marker before asking them if they want to turn back. They decided to give it a go but say with-in the 5 hour trip limits in case the wind doesn’t lay-out. First drift immediately puts a flounder in the box. Unfortunately, that was the highlight of the day. The drift/current was so crazy we were using 16 oz. to hold bottom in 70 ft. of water. Tried every trick I know of and every bait combo in the cooler but their jaws just wouldn’t open. Back in the slip with an embarrassing two fish in the box. Fortunately, this crew really didn’t seem to mind. They just like fishing, even when it’s not catching.

08/03/13 Ran to the bluefin hill on a report of three which were caught yesterday. Trolled all over without a pull. Even pulled right through the chunking fleet and didn’t see anyone doing battle so we decided to pick-up and make a 12 mile run to the east. Came upon some new gear and was able to put a dozen mahi in the box with light tackle. With two hours left in the day the guys ask to run to bluefin  hill and make a few drifts with “chunks”. After two drifts with no action it was time to roll.

08/02/13 Running east with a crew of four, one of which happens to be the son-in-law of the previous owner of my boat. Arrived at some bottom gear in 60 fathoms looking for the mahi. Spent a few hours going ball-to-ball with light tackle filling the box with mahi. The numbers weren’t as good as a couple days ago but good enough to hit our limit before the late night, lack of sleep and early leave took there toll on three of the guys.

08/01/13 Last minute cancel.

07/31/13 Out with a super crew from West Chester, PA. Threw-out the spread after 50 miles. The first hour yielded two mahi and one skipjack. Shortly after that we happened upon some long-line gear that was holding mahi. Pulled in the trolling baits and broke-out the light tackle. The rest of the day was an absolute blast going ball-to-ball and crushing the mahi. With 15 minutes left in the day the magic number was hit. We even put a few in the box for the crew. Back in the slip with 47 in the box.

07/30/13 Two half-day trips found decent flounder action on the AM trip as well as a good sea bass bite, be it most were throwbacks, on the second trip. Total combined keepers were 8 flounder and 10 sea bass.

07/29/13 Out with a couple from MD for a day of offshore action. After spending about an hour working the big hill for bluefin, I decide to work back inshore a couple miles and look at another smaller hill these fish will hide on. Just before we go up the hill our short rigger get nailed, a couple minutes later we put a 20 lb. yellowfin in the box. A couple passes over the hill and we have a 65 lb. bluefin in the box too. Looking for something our lady angler can crank on we troll south looking for a mahi or two. Spent the last couple hours working a small area on the 30 fathom line and going 1 of 2 on mahi as well as adding two more small yellowfin to the box.

07/28/13 Looking for fish with a crew who did not want to chunk for bluefin. After trying to get a bite among the chunking fleet without any success we run east looking for some gear that was present the last two years. The bottom gear is gone but I spot a long line set and work those balls which yields a couple bites and a few mahi in the box. Troll back inside to a few hills just south of the bluefin hole and manage to capture one more mahi and a small yellowfin.

07/27/13 Cancelled due to a broken throttle cable.

07/26/13 Today began at 2:30 am standing at the inlet calling the guys and telling them the wind has layed-out but the ocean’s still angry so I think we should wait a while before heading out.  At 7 am we head out with bait on board for flounder fishing as well as tuna bait if we decide to keep rolling east. After 16 miles I as the guy what they’d like to do, flounder is the call. Spent a few hours drifting for those tasty flatties but dirty water and cold temps really put a damper on the bite. After 4 hours we had 7 fish in the box as well as releasing some that were just under the limit.

07/25/13  Less than two miles outside the inlet I stopped the boat, made a speech, and offered the guys a refund if they wanted to turn back. After a brief discussion among themselves they told me to head back.  I must give these guys Appolo, PA a shout-out. They insisted Dave and I take some $$$ for our time, effort and honesty.

07/24/13 Spent a few hours today with the crew from Monday, plus two more Jr. anglers, drifting for flounder & sea bass. Bite was OK, not great, but OK. We even managed to put a few keepers in the box. At the end of the five hour trip we had four flounder to 23″ and a few sea bass in the box.

07/23/13 Another day at the bluefin grounds with a crew of four from DC. Arrived to find a few other boats working the area, but nothing seemed to be happening. Worked among the other boats for about an hour with no success, nor did I see any other boats hooked-up either. Decided to move over to a hill that sometimes hold fish too. Within 10 minutes of arriving at our new spot, our long rigger gets crushed. Twenty minutes later we have a 85 lb. bluefin in the box. A couple more passes ads a nice 15 lb. mahi too. The next pass sees two explosions on our baits but both tuna miss. Another turn and our long gets nailed again. This fish requires two anglers and eventually the 60 lb. bluefin makes it in the box too. While all this action was going on the winds came up from 15 knots to what I’m sure is 25+ and the seas, steep and tall. With one of the college aged anglers feeling horrible, the crew decides to call it a day early and head for the barn. A little friendly advice; ignoring the Dramamine suggestion and eating cold pizza for breakfast, is a recipe for disaster offshore.

07/22/13 Ran east looking for a bluefin with the owner of Galaxy 66 Bar & Restaurant and a few family members of her’s. My plan was to look for a bluefin(s) and then run to where we had our mahi  bites the day before. Unfortunately, the bluefin bite was off today and after spending two hours working the hill and only hearing of a couple caught among nearly two dozen boats I decided to run to the grounds we fished yesterday. Worked all over but just couldn’t find the water or the fish we had on Sunday. All we could manage was a 15 lb. bull mahi as well as having a very nice( looked to be 20+) mahi throw the hook while jumping.

07/21/13 Out with a crew of guys from north Philly. The morning was slow, to say the least. Finally, around 11 am, the fish started to bite. The action during the next couple hours was fairly steady with a mix of mahi and wahoo bites. When it was finally time to clear the lines we had four nice “gaffer” mahi and one small wahoo in the box.

07/20/13 Turned back after 3 miles due to rough conditions that were missing in NOAA’s forecast.

07/19/13 A little bluefin action with a family of five from Allentown, PA Our first encounter sees two rods get hit, one comes tight and one doesn’t. After 20 minutes and two anglers, we put a 75 bluefin in the box. Our next bite completely missed the bait. The action slows so I troll north toward a group of boats working another hill. Just before reaching them we get jumped again by two fish. Like before, one comes tight, one doesn’t. A few minutes later we put a 50 lb. “under” in the boat. With our bluefin limit reached, we decide to look elsewhere to see if we can find something else. Two hours later and only one “knock down” the family decided to call it a day which make one girl on board very happy since she has been battling the dreaded illness for the past few hours.

07/18/13 Out with a crew from Berks Co. PA for a day of tuna fishing. First bite too nearly 90 minutes after moving slightly north of where we’ve been fishing over the past few days. We put the first 75 lb. bluefin in the box. The next few hours produce two other fish. However, one was lost 40 feet from the boat when the leader chaffed through. Tried hard to find a “under” but didn’t have any luck.

07/17/13 Another early morning finds us at the bluefin grounds. The spread is set, five minutes later we have our first fish of the day. After a nice fight, the 80 lb. tuna goes in the box.  As Dave is resetting the spread I throw the boat in gear. I doubt we went 200 yards and we have a second fish on.  Another great fish and the fish is released. By this time a handful of boats have arrived. Enough to shut down the bite? I didn’t think so but it seemed to turn out that way. The next few hours produced only “boils” at the baits. It’s like the fish were just window shopping. Finally one crashes our short rigger spreader bar. Another epic battle and the bluefin is released to fight another day. Spent the rest of the day looking for a “under” but just couldn’t find one.

07/16/13 The MD DRN crew from Easton wants to go monster hunting. Not interested in bluefin, yellowfin or mahi, these guys wannna lock horns with a “eyeball” aka big eye tuna. Ran 60 mile south and threw out the spread. Two minutes later we have a small mahi in the box. The next few hours are spent working the bait around the pilot whales. Finally, in the middle of a turn, our long bait gets crushed. Handing the rod down from the bridge I can feel this is a serious fish and tell the guys I think they just got their wish. Two and a half hours and requiring all the guys twice on the rod we have a gaff in the 225 lb. big eye. This was truly a team effort since the fish went deep, got tail wrapped and died. We had to work him up from what I guess was 800 feet.

07/15/13 Another day on the bluefin grounds found a slow pick on mahi in the morning but no tuna bites. Finally around 9:30 our long rigger gets slammed. After a good battle, we put a 75 lb. bluefin in the box. Looked all over the rest of the day but only found another “gaffer” mahi. I looked sound and should have looked north. Capt. Todd moved north and found the bluefin on a northern hill. Back in the slip with one bluefin and five mahi in the box.

07/14/13 Out today with the FedEx Ground King’s crew of Media, PA . Baits hit the water early as everyone expects stupid amounts of boat traffic today. Our first fish takes about 45 minutes and the guessing starts, bluefin or yellowfin. Turns out to be a 35 lb. yellowfin. Our next bite comes after another 20 minutes. We put a second 40 lb. yellowfin in the box.  At this point I’m feeling kinda good about the day even with the minute by minute increasing numbers of boats arriving at the hill. Well, that feeling didn’t last very long and neither did our bites. Looked all over the rest of the day but all we could manage was one more knock-down.

07/13/13 Another super early leave pays off for this crew from MD & NJ.  The baits go out, twenty minutes later our mid-rigger get nailed. After a fantastic fight, Dave stick the gaff into the 85 lb. bluefin. The next few explosions miss the bait. Finally a bluefin with good vision smashes our short rigger. Fifteen minutes later we put the 65 lb. bluefin in the box. Our next fish is about the same size as the first fish we killed and is released at the boat. All this action is drawing quite a crowd and soon there are way too many boats working the same little area and the bite dies. The next two hours produce nothing so the guys decide to head in early allowing them plenty of time for the drive back to north Jersey with a cooler full of bluefin loins.

07/12/13 Broke the inlet at 3:30 am in horrible fog and heavy storms ahead. Zigzagged most of the 45 miles to the grounds avoiding small pockets of heavy rain. The baits hit the water around 6:00 and we start looking. About forty-five minutes later there’s a huge boil on our short rigger followed by an explosion on our mid rigger, both fish miss the baits. I swing around and our long rigger gets nailed and we put a 10 lb. mahi in the box. Another pass and another hook-up. Thinking we have a smaller bluefin on we’re happily surprised when Dave see’s those golden yellow fins and we put a 30 lb. yellowfin in the box. My next pass yields the same results, another 30 lb. yellowfin for the guys. The next 90 minutes see two more yellowfin added to the box with several other fish that missed the baits. By this point other boats have noticed me working this small area and move in for the kill. Unfortunately, it is the bite that gets killed. Spent the next two hours searching for a bluefin with only one knock-down. Sometime around 11 they guys tell me to head for the barn. Back in the slip early with four yellowfin to 40 lbs. and one mahi.

07/11/13 The two remaining guys from the original crew of 4 had to cancel  today due to lack of $$.

07/10/13 Headed east with a crew from Lancaster County PA who didn’t care that it was to be quite nautical today. Arrived at the tuna grounds to find 20 knot winds and fairly steep seas. First fish came with-in 10 minutes. After a great battle involving two anglers the 75 lb. fish is released next to the boat. Why, you ask, these guys are looking for “the one”. Our next fish comes twenty minutes later and brings two more anglers to their knees. Same size as the first fish, it too is released. After nearly an hour, two fish explode on our right rigger baits. One come tight and one doesn’t. After an epic fight involving two anglers we put the 105 lb. bluefin in the box. The guys are pointing at each other saying “you fight the next fish, not me”. After a brief discussion among themselves, the guys tell me to head for the slip.

07/09/13 Last minute cancellation.

07/08/13 Hit the bluefin grounds with high hopes for another great trip. Spent the morning looking all over with no luck. Where the heck did these fish go, and where’d the bait go too???? With a few hours left to fish in this 10 hour trip a fellow capt. gives me a call and tells me the bite has moved 4 miles south. By the time I got there most of the bite was done. Gave the guys an extra hour but had nothing to show for our efforts.

07/07/13 Another very early leave for the Fin Chaser. Dave sets the spread at 6:15. Sometime around 7 there’s a huge explosion on our short rigger but the fish completely missed the bait. Twenty minutes later we have another fish on our long rigger. This crazy bluefin is acting more like a wahoo than a tuna, racing from one side of the boat to the other. Dave gets the fish under control and we put the 135 pounder in the box. The next couple bites don’t come tight so I make a pass right through the middle of the area and “wham”, our long get hit again. This fish doesn’t seem to have the steam of the others, and to our surprise, we put a 55 lb. bluefin (under) in the box. Fifteen minutes later our long gets whacked again. After a good fight the 100 lb. fish is released to fight another day. Since everyone has had a turn on the rod and no one wants a second go the decision is made to try for some sea bass. Much to our disappointment the sea bass must have taken the day off. With  over $2000 of bluefin loins in the box the crew decides to call it a day a little early.

07/06/13 Left super early today looking for that first light bluefin bite. Lines hit the water at 6:10 and by 6:30 we have our first bluefin hooked-up. These fish are just plain wicked and this one’s giving my anglers fits. After 30 minutes and three anglers the fish is lost to slack line during an angler change. The next fish is hooked 20 minutes later. After a 45 minute fight involving four anglers we have the 195 lb. stud on the gaff. The guys were absolutely thrilled with their fish and didn’t care to battle another, I was told to head for the slip.

07/05/13 Today began with several options given to this 8.5 hour trips crew. After some debate the decision was made to run 20 mile south and look around one of our inshore bluefin haunts, then troll south toward a deeper wreck for some sea bass fishing. We arrived at the wreck with nothing to show for our trolling efforts. Fortunately, the sea bass action made us quickly forget about the lacking troll bite. Keepers were the norm instead of the exception, and some fine ones at that. Back in the slip with 50 in the box.

07/03/13 Trucking east toward the Baltimore Canyon when I get a report of very rough conditions in the deep and a possible bluefin bite nearby. Turned hard and pointed south. Threw-out the spread around 7 am.  Thirty minutes later I came to an area where “things just looked right”. Our first fish comes 15 minutes later, a stinkin’ chopper bluefish. Thirty minutes later I run over some great marks so I throw the boat into a turn and like clockwork the way back gets slammed. After a tedious 45 minute fight involving two anglers we have a 125 lb. bluefin in the box. At this point I’m told NO one on board wants to lock horns with another bluefin so I asked to look for anything else. We switch the spread to a yellowfin look but we’re really not in great yellowfin waters at this point. About an hour later the crew decides to see if the sea bass want to play. Spent a couple hours jerkin’ on some sea bass before he guys decide to call it a day early.

07/02/13 I am so sick of this wind! Today was to be a offshore trip but that plan was quickly scrapped when I took a swing around the inlet prior to arriving at the boat. Call the crew and gave them the news as well as two offers, a refund of their deposit or a short trip close to the beach. Guys really wanted to wet a line so we headed to a nearby wreck for a few hours. Bite was fairly slow although fish were caught and empty hooks, a regular occurrence. Back in the slip with just enough in the box for “fish taco’s”.

07/01/13 Last minute cancellation.

06/30/13 Rescheduled to a later date due to high winds and rough seas.

06/29/13 Today’s winds forced us to hang much closer to the beach than I would have liked, but this crew of old friends just wanted to spend a little time on the water, keepers really didn’t matter. The sea bass bite was good, the size, not so much. Turned our attention to tog and found a very good bite. With about an hour left in the day the tog shut down. Fortunately, friendly conversation helped pass that last hour.

06/28/13 Rescheduled to a later date due to high winds and rough seas.

06/27/13 Ran 15 mile south with a crew of four looking from some sea bass and tog. Sea Bass bite was OK with a few keepers making it in the box. The tog bite was surprisingly good, even put a couple in the box. Sent the guys back to PA with enough  for a real nice fish fry.

06/26/13 Spent a little time this morning looking for an inshore trolling bite with a crew of four from PA. Warned the guys we may want to forget the trolling portion of the day and spent that time running to big sea bass grounds, but this crew really wanted to try some trolling. After two hours without a sniff, we jumped on some nearby bottom and started playing with the sea bass. Keepers were few and far between which was no surprise to the guys since I warned them this bottom is not as good as the bottom we’ve been fishing the last several trip. Back in the slip with a bakers dozen in the box.

06/25/13 Today was to be a combo bluefin troll/wreck fishing trip but after explaining to the father of the family from NY how lousy the inshore trolling bite has been, he decided to go scrap the trolling portion, smart move. Ran quite a way north and found a very steady bite. Did see a few more throw-backs than the last few days but still had a very respectable keeper to throwback ratio. Big fish of the day was Kory’s 12 lb. cod, the biggest we’ve had in years. Back in the slip with 35 mouth watering fish in the box.

06/24/13 Ran north with a crew of five from Bedford, PA who wanted to try their hand at sea bass fishing. Morning bite was steady but slowed by around 10 am. Our second drop added a few more very nice fish to the box but it too slacked off after an hour of fishing. Sometime around 11 am the “long evil fruit” (aka: banana) made its first appearance of the year. With-in 30 minutes the wind went from nearly nothing to 15 knots. Decided to try one more piece before heading for home. This drop was the stuff dreams are made of. I haven’t seen sea bass fishing like this in years.The average size of the fish hitting the deck was incredible.  By 12:45 the wind was cranking @20 knots and it was time to leave this epic bite. Hauling the anchor turned-out to be quite a chore. We struggled for nearly 20 minutes bringing up not only the anchor, but a huge piece of wreck too……remember that banana. Back in the slip with 65 sea bass and ling in the box.

06/23/13 Took a crew of five from MD for a day of trolling and wreck action. Spent about two hours on some northern hills looking for a bluefin bite which never happened. Turned our attention to sea bass around 9 am. The bite was good with some very nice size males going in the box. Also had a few very nice ling and one 24″ atlantic cod. Ended the day a little early due to increasing winds and pending storms.

06/22/13 Out with a crew from Wenger Feeds of PA for a day of tuna action. Our first attack saw four rods go down. We knew immediately these fish were not keepers and all were released. The issue with small fish has plagued the fleet all week. Shortly after that the fog rolled in and everyone’s bites stopped. The sun finally broke through and so did the bites. The next few attacks only yield one “blt” (barely legal tuna) for the box. Worked a little area during the afternoon and managed to find a few more fish, two of which made it in the box. Back in the slip with three “blt’s” in the box. Kinda embarrassing but after talking to a few other boats I felt much better about our day compared to many.

06/21/13 Ran north with a JR and his crew looking to fill the box with sea bass. Bite was spotty at our first stop but that changed at our second drop. Fish were hungry, and the size, very respectable for this time of the season. Also managed a couple nice ling too. One of the guys was putting on a conger eel catching clinic, I swear he must have caught four of five of these nasty buggers. Back in the slip with 60 fish in the box.

06/20/13 Today started with lots of phone calls and what seemed like a Laurel & Hardy comedy act. Long story short; the guys were on the wrong boat and just about ready to pull out of the slip when I called. Finally broke the inlet an hour late running for our inshore trolling/wreck grounds. Arrived at the hill only to find cold green water and no bait. Trolled for about an hour before recommending to the guys we head for the wrecks. The sea bass action was very good and the size, respectable. By early afternoon, with sore arms, they had plenty in the box and called it a day. Back in the slip with 35 sea bass ready for the fillet table.

06/19/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

06/18/13 Ran 55 miles east with a crew of five from NY who were adamant they didn’t want to troll, they wanted to deep drop. Our first stop was in 600′ of water. The current was flying out of the north and the guys needed 3 lbs. of lead to hold bottom. First few golden tilefish came fairly quickly, then, the bites slowed drastically. After a while the guys were asking about running inshore a few miles and look for some jumbo sea bass. I convinced them to let me try one other nearby hole. With-in five minutes of the new drop, all four rods in the water were hooked-up. Three looked to be respectable fish. But one  looked to hung on bottom even though one of the anglers, as well as the mate, told me they saw the bite. I was just about ready to do the unthinkable when suddenly the angler was able to gain a few cranks on the reel and the fight was on. Twenty minutes later the 54 lb. monster golden tilefish breaks the surface. Spent the rest of the day working this piece of bottom and by days end we had 15 golden tilefish and 1 rosebelly in the box. Back in the slip we find out that we have the heaviest tilefish of the year so far, nice!

06/17/18 Out for a day of wreck action with a crew of six from Baltimore. Day was pretty nice, but thanks to a little too much fun the night before, three of the crew never made it out of the cabin. The remaining three had a very nice day putting plenty of sea bass in the box for a super size fish fry for everyone.

06/16/13 Today was to be a canyon trip for tuna, but thanks to the forecast for the offshore winds to hit 25 knots out of the sw, we decided to hang a little closer to the beach and look for mr. bluefin or some false albacore, aka:turkey. Looked all over in some ugly green water but couldn’t find any bluefin. Did manage a few turkeys which Mr. Wang and his guys were happy with.

06/15/13 Ran east to the Baltimore Canyon looking for the fish. The morning was slow, boats were scattering trying to find a bite. We were pulling 10 rods but still had room for one more in the spread. I decided to go “old school” and throw out a set of cedar plugs tight to the transom. Less than 30 minutes later we get hit by the yellowfin. Five rods go down and one by one the fish make it to the boat. Problem is these are the small guys and only one is of legal size. Still lots of fun for the charter. The next attack is about 45 minutes later. This time six rods go down and immediately the lines get crossed into a big tangle. By the time the mess is straightened out, one tuna has already thrown the hook and another is lost in mid fight. Two make it in the box, both around 30 lbs. The last fish is less than two feet from the gaff when one of the guys knocks the drag button and the fish takes off and throws the hook. About 30  minutes later we get jumped by a pair but only one comes tight and this is a better class fish. After a great battle, the mate has the 65 lb. fish on the gaff. Back in the slip with four yellowfin in the box and a very happy bunch of guys. Oh, about that “old school” fishing, those cedar plugs were the first thing to get hit all three times.

06/13/13 & 06/14/13 cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

06/12/13 Our first offshore trip of the season found us running south in hopes of finding some yellowfin. The bite was great two days ago, but numbers were kinda poor yesterday. Looked all over the washington canyon but could not get a tuna bite. Heard of a few caught, but not many at all. Did manage a nice mahi for one of the boys on board, his first. Pulled in lines an headed home with only one fish in the box. Seems one mahi was the quota for Fisherman’s Marina boats. Four boats fished today from our marina. Three of us wound-up with one mahi, one other boat didn’t have a pull.

06/11/13 Out with a repeat customer from OH for a day of sea bass and tog fishing. Conditions were right sporty for this single person charter. Anchored more times than I care to remember since the drift was way too fast, even 12 oz. wouldn’t allow us to hold bottom. Bite was spotty, good for 30 minutes then nothing. Repeated the process all day. Sent Donnie home with a nice bag of sea bass fillets as well as a bag of tog from his beautiful 6 lb. white chin.

06/10/13 Out with three Penguins fans from western PA for a day of sea bass action. The morning bite was good, even managed to put a few in the box. Would have loved to drift like the day before but conditions just wouldn’t allow it.  Bite slowed around 11 and absolutely died by noon.

06/09/13 Out for a day of shark fishing with a birthday boy and his crew from Easton, MD. The day was beautiful, calm seas and no wind. Unfortunately, we had no current or drift either. In four hours of drifting we only covered 1.25 miles, horrible! Our chum was simply falling straight to the bottom. By thirteen hundred we had only released a 60 lb. dusky and had two other bites that didn’t come tight so we decided to make a short run and see if the sea bass wanted to play. The bite was good and the size was OK too. Sent the crew home with a nice little catch of those “oh so tasty” fish.

06/08/13 First shark trip of the year. We’re greeted by weather that is much better than the forecast is calling for. Baits hit the water and the wait begins. After about 90 minutes drifting in all kinds of crazy directions we have our first shark in the line. The 60 lb. dusky is released after a short battle. Almost immediately we have another shark messing with a bait but after a 15 second run the shark drops the bait and doesn’t return. The next few hours see’s more clouds and only a few bites. Shortly after noon a big thresher grabs our floater and the fish is on. After about 20 minutes the main line breaks for no apparent reason. The shark might have caught it with his giant tail. The guys decided to wrap things up a little early due to heavy rain that moved in while we were doing battle with Mr. Tail.

06/02/13 through 06/07/13 Fin Chaser will not be sailing during this period to allow my family to celebrate Trevor’s (my son and inshore mate) high school graduation with a fishing trip of our own to Beaver Island Michigan. Trevor wants to do battle with giant carp (up to 40 pounds) on fly tackle.

06/01/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas.

05/31/13 Broke the inlet today to find much lighter winds and seas. Ran 25 mile south to a piece of bottom that I thought we would be able to drift with today’s conditions. The fish were scattered, no huge shots at any one spot. We looked all over this piece of bottom. When I’d mark em, we’d drift em until they would shut down. Then we would look around for another shot of fish. This scenario played out over and over again today. Can’t remember the last time I had to work this hard to put a respectable catch together but we did. By the days end we had 60 sea bass in the box and a very happy crew of regulars.

05/30/13 Few are the days I set out with trepidation about the bite. Today, was one of them. Arrived at the sea bass honey hole where we were immediately slapped in the face with fairly strong winds, very choppy seas and super cold water temps . Way too sporty to drift so out went the anchor. Bite was good but the keeper ratio was horrible. Worked hard but just couldn’t manage to find any numbers of keepers. Called it a day a little early so we could get one of the guys back to solid land. This was quite possibly o ne of the worst days of bottom fishing I’ve ever had.

05/26/13 Last minute cancel.

05/25/13 Today’s five hour charter was greeted with 25 knot west winds. Offering a complete refund and my advice to avoid the angry ocean.  I told them our ONLY option would be to hug the coast and try for some tog. I also noted that sometimes tog don’t bite well when it’s this rough out. “Lets go capt.” was the cry. Managed to find a few hungry fish but all under the 16″ size limit, and with 30 knot winds, we really couldn’t look any deeper. The guys had fun and everyone caught a couple tog. As they put it ” what a great adventure”!

05/24/13 Out with a couple from northern MD for a day of sea bass and tog fishing. The sea bass bite was slow and after a few stops we decided to turn our attentions to tog. Bite started off slow but within thirty minutes the tog turned on. Unfortunately, so did the wind, which was to be west at 10-15 knots, NOT northwest at 20-25. Pulled the anchor a little early due to deteriorating conditions. In the slip with just under a dozen sea bass and one tog shy of our limit.

05/22/13 & 05/23/13 Cancelled due to high winds and rough seas

05/21/13 Out with a family of five who wanna have some fun and if they can catch a few fish, even better. Conditions were MUCH better than the last two days and the bite was better too. Back in the slip with a bakers dozen sea bass, a couple of them are nice big knot-heads.

05/20/13 Heading east in search of sea bass. Conditions are much better than yesterday until we hit the 10 mile mark, then things get a little more interesting. The anchor goes down after 18 mile and the fish are hungry. One little problem, waaaay too many throwback. Pounded the area all day looking for some size but just couldn’t find any shot of good fish. Back in the slip with 30 in the box….and one less anchor. Bottom temps are still extremely cold which may have something to do with the fishing.

05/19/13 Opening day of sea bass season and we’re greeted with strong winds and big seas. Offered the guys a refund but they wanna go fishing. At the 1 mile mark I ask they if they want to scrap the idea….nope. At the 8 mile mark they decide not to go any farther and try some inshore wreck. The wind and seas continued to build while we struggled to get bites. Threw a final offer to the guy; ditch the 8 hour trip and make it a 5 hour instead. This offer got more bites than most of our baits, and shortly after noon we’re back in the slip with a dismal catch. One tog and a handful of sea bass.

05/18/13 Same crew as yesterday looking for some tog for the freezer. The bite was kinda weird. They’d chew good for the first 15-20 minutes at every piece, then turn off. Seemed every piece was good for one or two keepers as well, no more than that. Moved around a lot trying to keep these guys on the bite. With 45 minutes left in the day we hit our limit. Big fish of the day was a beautiful 11 lb. white chin.

05/17/13 Out with a crew of great guys down from NY for some tog fishing. Morning bite was very good with several legal females released since they hadn’t spawned-out yet. The bite slacked-off for about two hours but came back shortly after noon. This crew did manage two note worthy tog 9 & 10 lbs.

05/14/13 A four hour afternoon trip with a super nice couple from PA down for “hot rod week”. Ran north and found great tog action on a small piece close to the beach. Most of the fish were running 14 – 15″ but we did manage a few (4) keepers the largest of which was 5 lb.

05/13/13 Out with a crew of monster tog hunters from NY. First stop produced good action and several legal fish. But this crew wasn’t interested in 16 – 17″ fish, they wanted monsters, so the keepers were thrown back. Spent the rest of the day jumping from wreck to wreck looking for togzilla and dealing with the worst current of the entire season. By the days end, we had 9 in the box. The largest of which was just under 6 lb. Kinda late in the season for monster tog.

05/12/13 A mother’s day tog fishing extravaganza for this family of four from MD. Morning bite was far less than extravagant. After a few moves that only produced throwback size fish, I decided to give the piece we started on a second go. Sitting on the exact same spot as earlier we found great action and much better size.  By days end, we were one fish shy of our limit.

05/11/12 Cancelled at the weatherman’s advice. Should have ignored him, perfectly fishable day.

05/08/13 Out for a few hours of toggin’ with a crew of four from Stryker Medical in somewhat lumpy conditions. Bite was good but the size class wasn’t. After a couple hours the rolling waves started taking their toll on two of the anglers so we decided to call it a day.

05/03/13 through 05/07/13 Cancelled due to rough conditions.

04/28/13 Same crew as yesterday plus another friend of theirs, Mike. Decided to look for togzilla on a small wreck that has produced some big fish in the past. Bite was rather slow with only a few keepers making the box in the first two hours. Suddenly, Joe gets hit by the real thing and puts a 9 lb. fish in the box. Thirty minutes later, Mike gets hit. Sure to be a double digit fish by the bend in the rod. Half-way up, the fish pulls the hook. A little while later, Mike gets slammed again. This time the fish wraps up in something high and cuts the line. Another double digit  lost. With ninety minutes left in the day we decide to give up on the monsters and look for dinner. While running for a piece that sits right up against the beach I decide to try a different one that should yield some keepers but might hold the big one too.  Fifteen minutes after dropping anchor we have several keepers in the box. With 20 minutes left in the day, Joe yells for the net. I see the fish briefly before it make a second run to the bottom. Joe keeps steady pressure and ultimately wins the battle. This 14 lb. tog clinches Joe’s trifecta , a three day sweep of the heaviest fish pool $$$.

04/27/13 Out with some of the same crew as yesterday plus two who drove down over night. Decided to run south looking for some size. Found a great bite but way too many “shorts”. Worked had all day but just couldn’t find many keepers. Back in the slip with 12 tog in the box on of which is “Bucktail Joe’s” 10 pounder.

04/26/13 Ran north with a crew of tog fishermen from NY & NJ looking for the hot bite. First wreck produced three keepers and a couple throw-backs. The next three stops held similar results with some sea bass mixed in. Last stop of the day produced the best action adding several fish to the box and yielding the two largest tog of the day, both slightly over 7 lbs. Back in the slip three tog shy of our limit.

04/20/13 Out for a little 4 hour trip with a family from Japan. With-in thirty seconds of the baits hitting the bottom I knew we were in for a treat. Three empty hooks and two anglers doing battle. The next few hours was truly epic for these tog fishing newbies. Fish, or bare hooks,  were coming up left and right.  The kids, ages 8, 8 & 10 were putting on a “tog catching clinic”. When the bell sounded we had 19 in the box, all but one being over 17″. We had also released a few dozen more a couple of which were 5 – 7 lb. females loaded with roe.

04/14/13 Our 2013 season started today with a ½ day tog trip with a crew of younger generation anglers, three guys and two gals. While explaining the nuances of tog fishing, I warned the guys that ladies can be formidable opponents when it comes to tog fishing. This was met with much skepticism. The bite was good, even great for one. For the others, not so much. By the end of  the trip the gals had out-fished the guys 15 to 4. Sent the crew of five back to northern DE with enough tog for a nice back yard fish fry.