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2018 Reports

09/21/18 & 09/22/18 Two days of really nice mahi action with a couple of super great crews. Friday found us down in the Washington trolling up a very nice class of fish. By noon time we have 30+ in the box and head for the fish cleaner. Saturday is much more sporty and we hang a little closer to the inlet and when I get the word the NW wind has started at the inlet we pull in the spread and head for the slip with 19 in the box, two of which are in the 20# range.

09/19/18 Braved a pretty nasty forecast with a crew who really wanted to spend some time on the water. Turned out to be much nicer than the forecast was calling for but still plenty sporty. False Albacore bite was fairly steady throw in a couple mahi for the table and the crew calls it a day shortly after noon.

09/16/18 Finally back on the water after things the ocean calmed down from hurricane Florence. Made a 40 mile run before finding some weeds. The next few hours provide outstanding trolling action on both mahi and fat alberts. With increasing wind, the threat of pending storms and a pretty full box we pull-the-plug around noon and head for the barn.

09/12/18 First day out since the big wind of the past several days. The guys for today decided they’d rather save a few hours and bucks and hang closer to the beach rather than make the run to the canyons. Ran to where we last had some bites several days ago only to find much colder (8 degrees) and greener water. Looked all over, even spent some time drifting for sea bass, but the fish just didn’t want to bite today. Back in the slip with only a couple in the box.

09/07/18 & 09/08/17 Two days of mid range trolling action. Friday sees some outstanding mahi action on light tackle while Saturday we spend most of the time battling those hard pulling turkeys and managing to get a couple mahi bites too.

09/06/18 Out with DNR Ron and his crew for a day of tilefish action. Bite was good with a mixed bag of bluelines and small goldens. The boat limit was reached shortly before noon so we throw out a quick trolling spread and head west. In the next hour we see four marlin in our spread. The first gets bill wrapped and breaks the leader after a series of jumps. The next fish smashes the long rigger and after a great battle with a very acrobatic white Ron finally has his first white marlin. The last two are just window shopping and don’t take the bait. Last bite of the day is a 8# mahi.

09/04/18 Ran 20 mile south today with two guys from southern York County, PA. After 45 minutes of trolling and no bites we decide to try for some sea bass. The action is hot with a good number of keepers going in the box. During one of the drifts a school of very small mahi show up under our dangler so we grab the spinners and put a 5 or 6 in the box. A couple drifts later the same thing happens and we add 3 or 4 more to the box. Decide to try for a flounder or two before we start trolling again. The first drift sees Chad put a nice 22″ flounder in the box. Throw out a trolling spread and manage to add one more mahi to the box before time runs out. Back in the slip with 28 sea bass, 1 flounder and 9 small mahi in the box.

09/03/18 Today’s guys wanted action and really didn’t care about fish to take home so we made a 15 mile run east and spent the morning doing battle with a constant stream of hard pulling false albacore (aka: turkeys).

09/02/18 Same guys as yesterday for a day of deep drop action. Bite started off slow but within the hour the fish were chewing, sometimes faster than the guys could react. Sometime around noon we reach our limit of tiles so we throw out a trolling spread and point toward the beach. About an hour later we pull everything in and head to the fish cleaners.

09/01/18 Out with a crew for their yearly fishing weekend trip. Due to high winds offshore we’re forced to hang closer to the beach so we spend most of the morning catching bluefish for the smoker with a few other fish mixed in.

08/27/18 thru 08/31/18  Still running 8 hour mid range trips while waiting for some new water to pull in offshore. The mid range action has been good with decent catches of jumbo spanish mackerel, king mackerel,  atlantic bonito, false albacore and some mahi.

08/26/18 The folks today opted to save some money and do the 8 hr mid range trip instead of the 12 hr canyon which was scheduled. After spending some time on a nearby shoal and putting one spanish mackerel and a couple greenies in the box they ask if we could look for a mahi or two. We run to some fish trap gear and within the first 30 minutes we have three mahi in the box. Worked the gear for a while longer with a couple more bites that don’t come tight.

08/24/18 & 08/25/18 Two very tough days spent out deep looking for mahi & marlin. Friday’s trip covered over 30 miles with baits in the water but yielded only one bite. Saturday’s trip yielded one white marlin release and a couple micro mahi bites. Both days combined we must have passed over 20 sets of lobster gear but none holding any mahi.

08/15/18 thru 08/21/18  There’s nothing new under the sun, someone once wrote. Things haven’t changed much since my last report. Canyon action is still tough. Thankfully the mid-range trips are still producing good catches of kings, spanish, greenies and a mahi or two. Some days are better than others. Some days they chew from first light on and some days they don’t seem to get going until just before noon. I’m just thankful that we’ve been able to put good numbers in the box and get back to the slip with happy customers.

08/12/18 thru 08/14/18 With our canyon fish taking a siesta we’ve been encouraging our trips to consider a shorter & cheaper trip targeting a super tasty species Atlantic Bonita. All crews have been cool with the option and very happy with the box at the end of the trip. As a bonus we’ve also managed a couple king & spanish mackerel and a mahi or two. Many of the crews have come back with 40+ in the box.

08/11/18 Started today with a group meeting and the decision was made for action instead of one or two (maybe) big bites. Ran to the hill where we’ve spend the last few days and immediately started filling the box. After two hours the decision is made to head out deeper looking for something big. Several hours later and no bait, birds or bites I spin the boat around and point toward the same general area where we spent the first couple hours of the day. Within two miles of the hill I notice the first bait I’ve seen since leaving the area. Two minutes later our flat line takes off and we put a nice mahi in the box. Ten minutes later we get another bite but that fish misses the hook. Five minutes later we get a small mahi on the bar and he goes in the box too. Worked the area hard but no other bites.

08/10/18 Out with Chris and his two eight year old jr anglers ready to crank on some greenies. The action was fast and furious. Both kids did a great job on the greenies but our lady angler needed just a little help with the kings & spanish. Ended the day with a little shark drifting but never had any takers. Back in the slip with a mixed bag of about 25 fish in the box.

08/09/18 Spent today with Robert and his boys while absolutely crushing the king & spanish mackerel as well as those “oh so tasty” atlantic bonito (aka: greenie). Sometime around 10 am we’ve got a box full of greenies and hit our limit of mackerel so the guys decide to troll for an hour or two and then get the catch back to the fish cleaner.

08/08/18  Hit the inlet today along with what seemed like every boat fishing the WMO. The first ten miles was crazy with boat traffic/wakes. Everything calmed down nice until we hit the 20 fathom line then thing started to build quickly. Pulled her back and threw out the spread at the 35 mile mark working two big hills looking for a bite. After two hours of nothing and steady 15/20 knot winds I ask the guys if they mind if I head out deeper. After a quick team meeting I’m asked if we could head back shallower to what will hopefully be less wind/waves. After a 11 mile run we set out the baits and start looking. First two bites are those darn toothy wahoo and both baits get cut clean off. Next bite is a 7# mahi and he makes it in the box. The next hour is quiet until I come to an area that I loaded with atlantic bonito as well as king & spanish mackerel. After filling the box with these very tasty fish we head back to the fish cleaners for some processing.

08/07/18 After a brief discussion at the dock this morning the dads go with their boys decision of more action as opposed to the big bite and we hear to the shoal that was so good yesterday. First bite takes less than two minutes and the next forty minutes are awesome. Then, like someone flipped the switch, the bite stops! Looked all over the hill the rest of the seven hour trip but could only manage some taylor bluefish, bar jacks and two more spanish. Back in the slip with 11 spanish and 1 king mackerel.

08/06/18 Two trips with similar results. Great action on king & spanish mackerel found us hitting the boat limit before the end of each trip.

08/05/18 Out with a crew from Bedford PA looking for some tuna action. Arrive at the spot at 5:15 am to find around 40 other boats already there and a steady line still coming. Set the anchor and proceeded to get the baits out. After thirty minutes of no action I climb up on the bridge and realize the anchor has slid and we’re in much deeper water than I had wanted. Pulled everything in and reset the anchor. Thirty minutes later, no action, I check the sounder and darn if that anchor didn’t slide again. I honestly can’t ever remember this oversize anchor not grabbing immediately. This time I can anchor where i want to because the 40 some boats has blown up to 100+ and there no room. We decide to make a drift and after another 90 minutes we still haven’t had a pull. I decide to make a 5 mile move to another hill and immediately mark fish. We quickly send out a couple baits and one takes off. The fish is pulling but not quite like a 50# tuna should.  Turns out the bite we’ve been waiting all morning for is a super jumbo skipjack tuna. Make a few more short drifts before throwing up the white flag and making a run for the mackerel/bluefish hill. Spent over an hour on the hill but can’t buy a bite……SMH!!  Trim a few hundred off the trip and head in with my head held low.

08/04/18 Hit the inlet today and was slapped in the face by some fairly stiff winds that were not in the NOAA forecast. At the 10 mile mark I stopped to see if the guys wanted to keep going or hang in closer to the beach. Despite one guy already in sick bay the decision was made to press on. Arrived at the tuna hill around 5:30 and proceeded to set out the chunking baits. About ten minutes later the leader of the crew tells me we need to head in since two of the guys are extremely sick. Sometime around 7:30 we’re back in the slip. Feeling terrible for the guys who weren’t sick I offer them a few hours of shark fishing. We head back out and drift baits for a couple hours. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE take those Bonine pills the evening/night before the trip and get a good nights sleep too.

08/03/18 Ran east today with a great crew from Reading PA that we get to spend a day with every year. Threw the hook (anchor) in 100′ of water and sent out the butterfish. First bite takes less than 10 minutes and after a great fish the hook simply pops out of the fishes mouth less than 10 feet from the gaff. Next bite comes in about 15 minutes and that bluefin goes in the box. One hour later we have two more bluefin in the box (our limit of “unders”) and decide to try and find a mahi or two before heading in ahead of the forecast afternoon winds. Worked some sea bass gear and on the final flag we manage to get Tigger his mahi.

08/02/18 Today was to be a marlin trip with the same guys as yesterday but the forecast said no way. Picked up a last minute bachelor party crew from PA who wanted to try a couple hours of shark fishing. Set up a few miles south of the inlet and waited. First shark, a small spinner, showed up in about 45 minutes. From that point on we had action about every 15 minutes but the sharks all seemed to be the small. Finally our deep rod gets bit and after a few minutes we have a 275# sand tiger next to the boat for pics.

08/01/18 Out with a father and son from upstate NJ who despite the forecast wanted to brave the winds and try for some bluefin.  Arrived at the lump in some sporty conditions and set out a quick trolling spread before changing over to chunking. Within 15 minutes we have our first bite and Matt does a great job on the reel and a 48# bluefin goes in the box. A while later we get a mahi bite and dad takes care of this little guy. By now the winds are cranking and the guys decide to troll for a little while longer then head in before things go from hateful to horrible.

07/31/18 Sea Bass tagging for a wind farm impact study

07/30/18 Today find me running east with a family from WI looking for some action for their kids. Spent the morning with a constant bent rod catching spanish & king mackerel and bluefish. Sometime around 11 the winds came up and thing got choppy enough that our 8 year old lady angler was getting a little scared so we headed back in with a very nice catch. Got into the slip just in time for more rain.

07/29/18 PM Trip  Out with two families for a couple hours of action on Taylor Bluefish and Spanish Mackerel. Bite was great and everyone had a ball. Sent the crew home with seven very nice size Spanish and having released countless blues.

07/29/18 Started today with the guys trying to decide what they’d like to do on their eight hour trip. Two of the guys wanted a little less fishing time but wanted to look for  bluefin . The other three wanted action and small fish were ok, they didn’t wish to fish all day for only a couple bites which has been our tuna fishing the last two days. The final decision is to have more fishing time and action on small fish. Arrived at the lump and proceeded to put about 15 fish in the box in the first thirty minutes.  At that point things kinda went downhill when the guys decided they didn’t want to mess with these fish and wanted mahi which have been a little scares the last week or so.  Moved over to some sea bass gear that was nearby and proceeded to work that gear and another set of gear the rest of the trip. We were able to manage one 8# mahi around the gear but that was our only bite. Back in the slip it was apparent the guys were not happy at all with the trip and headed back to DC with their catch

07/28/18 A day of tuna fishing with a crew of super nice guys from North East, MD. Arrived at the hill to find a 50/50 mix of trollers and chunkers. Dave throws out a trolling spread and we weave our way through all the boats not really seeing much of anything happening. Finally in late morning we get our first bite and a small yellowfin goes in the box. Our next bite seems to take forever and as the rigger clips releases I see a 15# mahi come flying out of the water before landing on its side making a huge splash. That crazy jump was enough to throw the hook….kinda the way our day is going. Sometime around noon we decide to join the crowd and throw some chunks. After two hours and no pulls we head to the barn. Today the fish won!

07/27/18 Out with a father his two boys from the Show Me State. Morning is decent with a couple of mahi bites and two of the three make it in the box. Our first tuna bite comes around 9:30 and after a good fight we have Joe’s 50# bluefin in the box.  Our next encounter is a small skipjack followed shortly by a 25# yellowfin. The guys call it a day around noon to get some beach time before making the trip back to Missouri.

07/26/18 Back on the water after the longest stretch of bad wind I can every remember for July. The guys want to go even with the warning of very sporty conditions. The morning bite is pretty decent and by 9 am we have two bluefin in the box and a third that pulled off less than 10′ from the gaff. With stiff winds turning more to the west I point the boat toward OC and troll west until we hit shallow water and pick-up and run for the barn early.

07/19/18 Long forgotten trip post….sorry! Don’t remember much except what the picture shows.

07/18/18 Today began with lots of discussion about the days forecast. The decision is made to try and get to the lump where the tuna have been holding and then come back closer to shore for the last few hours and try and put some kings in the box. As we clear the north jetty its apparent the north winds have already started and the guys decide to pass on the tuna and hang tight to the beach and look for some kings. The king mackerel bite is better than I’ve seen it years and by 9 am we have our limit and head back to the dock in order to get one guy, who’s not having a good day, back on solid land.

07/16/18 Finally our tuna have moved inside the 30 fathom line making our run time this morning much shorter. The first hill I look at doesn’t seem to be holding anything so I head for another area 3 miles away. First bite come after about thirty minutes and we put a 10# mahi in the box. The next two bites see two yellowfin going on the box. Several hours of boredom are followed by another mahi, a few skipjack and one more very feisty yellowfin.

07/15/18 Sea bass tagging for a study involving the pending wind farm.

07/14/18 Spent today with two couples from PA looking to take some tasty fish back home with them. The first two hours provide fairly constant action on marlin, tuna and mahi. The bite absolutely died around 9 am so we pull in the gear and head to where I passed some weeds on the way out. After thirty minute of searching we locate some big weed patches and spend the rest of the day adding mahi to the box. Back in the slip with one yellowfin, 19 mahi and two white marlin releases.

07/13/18 Out with a crew of six who decided to enter the OC Tuna Tournament even though they only have one day to fish. Pushed through heavy seas to arrive at the tuna grounds shortly after 7 am. Within five minutes we have a blue marlin tracking one of our spreader bars. The bar is reeled in and that darn marlin pops up and crushes our long rigger. After a blistering run the fish goes deep creating a big belly in the line that we’re not aware of until its too late and the braid rubs something on the boat and parts. Our next two bites are two white marlin which we’re able to get the baits away from before the get the hook. Next bite is a small mahi and he goes in the box. Finally we get the right bite and Dave puts a 65# yellowfin in the box. A little while later we get jumped by the yellowfin again and three rods go down. Sometime during the fight two of the fish are lost but we’re able to put one more respectable fish in the box. By noon the seas have built to a point that I decide we need to go especially after a wave breaks into the cockpit. Back in OC the crew is ecstatic to find out that they’ve won nearly $1700 in the daily calcutta for heaviest stringer for boats 35′ and under. As of this posting Fin Chaser is tied for second place for heaviest fish and first place for stringer weight for boats 35′ and under.

07/11/18 & 07/12/18  Two days of fishing with the same family who are in town from Washington state. Wednesday we decide to target mahi and find outstanding numbers holding in some huge weed mats. Our limit is reached before noon and the guys decide to head in allowing them time to package the fish for the plane ride home. Thursday we head south looking for some tuna. After three hours of fishing we have five fat yellowfin in the box. The decision is made to head in allowing time for packaging to meet the airlines requirements.

07/10/18 After a couple rare days off, we’re back on the water with Jim and the boys. The first couple hours provide steady trolling action on mahi and two white marlin releases. Sometime around 11:00 we find the mother load of mahi holding close to a weed patch. The light tackle comes out and we spend about an hour filling the box with mahi. When the guys have enough we head south and within thirty minutes we’ve added three small yellowfin the the box and release one that doesn’t make the cut. A couple more bites that don’t come tight round out the day.

07/06/18 Broke the inlet today only to find most of the fleet heading back in due to the stiff south winds. Talked to the guys and we decide to spend a couple hours fairly tight to the beach looking for taylor bluefish, king & spanish mackerel. Bite was great and within a few hours we had a box full of a mixed catch.

07/05/18 Made a 55 mile run south today with a crew of four regulars looking to bend a rod. First two hours find us trolling among a couple schools of tuna who don’t seem to be interested in a trolled bait. I decide its the perfect day to put up the new (last year) toy, our greenstick. The first time we find them on the surface and pull through the breaker goes and we put a 50# yellowfin in the box. The next few hours are spent chasing the birds and seeing some of the most violent tuna strikes you can imagine. We put two more in the boat, one a 60# pig, and have two other explosions that miss the hook. Manage to add three mahi to the box while fighting one of the yf.

07/04/18 A shorter day today with a crew looking to spend 8 hours on the boat allowing other fun for the afternoon. Spent the morning looking for some king & spanish mackerel but all we could find were endless amounts of small taylor bluefish. Spent about an hour drifting with our shark baits out but only had one window shopper.

07/03/18 Another day of outstanding mahi action with the Wagner crew from PA. Action started as soon as we located the weeds and I doubt 10 minutes went by with a bite. Finished the day with some triggerfish action on spinners. Back in the slip two hours early with 21 mahi and 23 triggers in the box.

07/02/18  Made a run south today with a crew of NYC’s finest firefighters in hopes of some mahi action. Searched briefly before finding the weeds that were holding fish yesterday.  The next several hours was mahi fishing paradise both trolling and light tackle. After their fill of mahi we stopped on a floating bucket and added a few triggerfish to the box. With all the fish they need I’m told to head for the barn. In the slip nearly two hours early with about 25 mahi in the box and a couple triggers too.

07/01/18 Broke the inlet today with a crew from PA headed 55 miles south. Spent the first two hours in some crazy weeds allowing us to put a couple mahi in the box. pointed the boat west thinking we might find some fish in 40 fathoms. Along the way a white marlin pops up behind our short rigger and then disappears. Fifteen seconds later he shows up behind my long rigger. From there he moves over to our shotgun rod and finally takes the bait. A few minutes later Larry has his first marlin next to the boat for a release. Ended the day in more crazy weeds adding a few more mahi to the box.

06/30/18 Out with Ryan and the boyz  from PA. Our first encounter takes place after about two hours of dragging bait when a white marlin hangs himself and is released after a good fight. Our next encounter is about an hour later when I see a school of small tuna a few hundred yards off the side but by the time we get there the school has gone down. A second pass fools one and the blt yellowfin goes in the box. Final bite of the day happens with just minutes left in the day and we put one of two mahi in the box.

06/29/18  Made a 55 mile run east with a crew from northeast PA.  First hit take about 90 minutes when Dave notices some skipjack next to the boat. I swing through and one by one the rods go down. When I finally put the boat in neutral we have seven fish on. After a few minutes of total chaos we manage to put six small yellowfin in the box. Next bite takes quite a while and after tearing line off the reel everything goes slack and the fish is gone….???? Finished the day going three for five on mahi, one a 15# gaffer.

06/27/18 Headed to the deep in some fairly sporty seas with four guys from PA. At the 35 mile mark one og the younger guys isn’t feeling too great and the guys decide to trim the trip to 8 hours and look for the elusive bluefin. First two hours produce nothing even though the slicks look promising. Finally one of our bars get nailed and we put a small Bluefin in the box. With a little time let in the day I make a run to the area that’s been holding the jumbo bluefin and birds but after an hour of looking its apparent they’re gone.

06/26/18  Ran to the 100 fathom line before Dave throws out the spread. First two hours produce nothing. Finally we get a mahi bite but the fish manages to throw the hook just feet from the boat. Next bite is a double header tuna bite and one small yellowfin goes in the box. A while later we get a second chance at a mahi and this one goes in the box too. Last bite is a huge explosion on our bar but the crazy fish somehow misses the hook. Pretty bummed out with only two fish in the box but then I hear some radio chatter and I actually feel fortunate.

06/25/18  Heading east today with a crew of three from TX who are in the middle of a northeast fishing tour. The fear of the dreaded twelve hour sickness presses us to stay somewhat close to the beach so we try and find those finicky bluefin.  After about an hour of looking I see what I think is them. With great anticipation we’re almost there when suddenly I realize its a school of HUGE bluefish but its too late. The 15 lb+ blue barracudas ravage our spread but provide this TX trio all the fight they want. After another pass and more action I pull away still looking for the bluefin. Finally we find some bluefin pushing water but after a few passes our main angler isn’t doing well and we pull the plug on the day.

06/24/18  Out for revenge on this 10 hour trip in the same area as yesterday. This time we get lucky and have the fish right next to the boat within the first 30 minutes of fishing. Three rods take off and its game on. After a epic struggle we put a 95# bluefin in the box. Twenty minutes later we release a 110# to fight another day. Unfortunately the third fish pulled the hook at some point while we were dealing with the first two fish. Worked all over the area the rest of the day trying to find some smaller fish but the “unders” seem to have vanished.

06/23/18 After hearing stories of big bluefin 35 miles off the beach that will not bite I decide to give them a try. After an hour of trolling we find the birds dive bombing bait  and every now and then a tuna would explode out of the water. Pulled around trying to get close enough but every time we’d get near them they’d go down. Finally we get right next to a school and both bars get blasted. One misses but the other is pulling good drag when suddenly the line goes slack. Tyler reels in the line and we find a crimp broke causing a nice bluefin and a $150 brand new bar to swim away. Worked the fish the remainder of this 8 hour trip but could never get quite close enough for another bite.

06/21/18 While running east I get a hot tip about a great looking area 3 miles to my south so I spin the boat around and Dave throws out a quick spread. Arrived to find less than impressive marks but do manage to put a 12# mahi in the box. After wasting an hour on nothing we pick up and continue running east while hearing of a couple fish caught first thing this morning where I was headed. Arrived in the canyon to find the weeds that everyone is complaining about. After about two hours of constant weeded up baits the charter asks if we can go back inside and look for a bluefin so I make the 15 mile run back west. Set the spread and start looking. After about an hour our bird get exploded on but the fish misses the hook. Worked the area hard the rest of the day but never get another bite.

06/20/18 Ran east with high hopes since the tuna chewed the bottom off boats yesterday. After the first few hours it was apparent today that ain’t gonna happen. Ran back inside and starting pounding the hills for bluefin. Finally around noon we have our first bluefin in the box. A few more passes, another bite that doesn’t come tight and that’s all she wrote for today….flat calm water rarely any good for tuna action.

06/19/18  Research work on the pending wind farms construction impact on black sea bass.

06/18/18 Another long run in search of tuna. Our first hit takes about 30 minutes. Tuna are blowing up all over our spread and five find the hook. With only three anglers its tough to keep the fish tight and one pulls off after a minute but we still have four hooked up. Somehow we manage to put all four in the box and these are some nice fat yellowfins. Worked among the rest of the boats all day but the bite never really turned on and some excellent boats went home with only one or two fish so we head home feeling very fortunate to have four in the box.

06/16/18 Ran south to the same area that was so good to us yesterday. After about 90 minutes of trolling two of our bars get blown up on but only one fish finds the hook and after a good fight we put a fat yellowfin in the box. About thirty minutes later a blue marlin crashes our long rigger and after Justin’s 50 minute battle Tyler has the leader and the 300-350# blue is an official release. The next few hours produce countless weed and skipjack bites but no yellowfin. With less than 30 minutes left in the day a small yellowfin picks off one of our baits and he’s thrown in the box too.

06/15/18 Made a big run south looking for some tuna today with a rescheduled crew from last year. After two hours of looking with no results I decide to make a 10 mile run farther south based on some “top secret” info. Dave sets the spread and within 15 minutes we have our first yellowfin in the box. The next two hours are what tuna fishing should be. Shorty before noon we hit our limit which is a good thing since the crew of four is totally shot from fighting these fat yellowfins. Back in the slip with 12 in the box and several others released.

06/14/18  Out for a 10 hour tuna/shark combo trip. Arrived at the bluefin hill to find whales, birds and dolphins everywhere. Worked among the nature show for nearly two hours with a pull or even seeing a tuna air out on bait. Decided to troll back toward where I planned to set up for shark fishing. Less than a mile inside the whales our flat line gets nailed and we put a small bluefin in the box. A couple more passes and our bar gets crushed and another bluefin goes in the box. The next forty-five minutes produces three more misses before #3  finds the hook and is added to the box. Lines are pulled in and we make a 20 mile run and set up in hopes of a thresher shark. After ninety minutes and no pulls the guys decide to get their bluefins back in to the fish cleaner.

06/10/18 Another day of tile fishing with Austin and the boys. The day seemed to be a carbon copy of yesterday but with added current and not as many sizable goldens. Within the first hour we’re up to 4 pounds of lead and still not really holding bottom.  This was by far the worst current/drift I’ve had to deal with in years. With about 45 minutes left in the day I hear a report of a little bite happening close to our course home so we quickly bring in the bottom baits and I push the engines to 2400.  Arrive at the spot with 30 minutes to fish. We throw out a quick bluefin spread and within 10 minutes we have a bluefin on the rod. After a nice fight Austin gaffs his first tuna (mate Dave had today off) a 40# bluefin. Trolled a little longer but no other bites. Back in the slip with 16 tilefish to 18# and one bluefin.

06/09/18 Ran north today looking for a better tilefish bite than yesterday. First two hours were terrible. With only three fish on the box and hardly any bite I start looking around. Finally around 10:30 the sky brightens the current slacks off a little and the fish start to bite. The next few hours produces a fair catch but a few very respectable golden tiles and the largest swallowtail bass (one beautiful fish) I’ve ever seen. Back in the slip a few short of our limit but with one golden pushing 25#, one at 20# and two more in the high teens.

06/07/18 & 06/08/18  Two days of deep drop action. Thursday’s crew had an outstanding morning nailing some of the largest sea bass I’ve seen in quite a while. Mixed in were with the 40 sea bass was a limit of average size blueline tilefish.  Friday was a bit tougher and the numbers and size wasn’t like the day before. Back in the slip with a fair catch but no limits.

05/31/18 Fun day of sea bass action with a three generation local crew from MD. Bite was very good, even had some rare “keepers” mixed in. Sent 22 to the cleaning table.

05/27/18 Half-day wreck trip finds good action on Sea Bass with a better keeper ratio than in past trips for this crew from PA. Back in the slip with close to 20 in the box.

05/25/18 & 05/26/18 A tale of two trips. Great to be back on the water after last weekends crazy rain. Friday’s trip finds us in calm seas with some very eager sharks. Takes about an hour for our first bite but after that it was game-on releasing four blue sharks to 120# and three mako sharks to 100#. Finished the day playing with some sea bass.  Saturday finds us in very sporty conditions and tight lipped sharks. After a couple hours of drifting around we only have one mako release and one other encounter with a blue shark that didn’t want anything with a hook in it. Spent the last two hours of the day messing with the sea bass.

05/15/18 Opening day of Sea Bass found us leaving the dock a little late. No big deal until we get to the wreck I was hoping to drop on and another boat is already sitting there. Ran another couple miles to an area that’s normally good. First few hours was mixed, one drift would produce a couple for the box and then nothing. Moved around all day working any bite I could fine to try and bend a rod. Sometime around 9 am the SW wind started to crank making things a little sporty. Around 11 am the north current started running all but killing what little bite we had. Buddy of mine dropped a Go Pro down and said there were plenty of fish but they were tight to the bottom and just sitting there….crazy fish!! Back in the slip with a little more than half our limit.

05/11/18 & 05/12/18  Two pretty tough days of Tog fishing. Friday’s bite was the better of the two and lasted until about noon at which time the current started screaming out of the north and the bite immediately shut down. Saturday was plain terrible. Current against the wind had the boat laying sideways in the trough, horrible slow bite and flies getting blown off the land from the SW winds. Sent each crew home with enough fresh tog for a nice fish fry.

05/05/18 Much nice conditions and much better action than yesterday. Spent the day working one area with a steady stream of 15″ fish coming over the rail. Fortunately there were enough keepers mixed in with the throw backs to keep everyone interested. Back in the slip with 11 in the box. The guys went back to PA with two heavy bags full of those oh so tasty fillets.

05/04/18  Back on the water again…finally! Broke the inlet and received a rude slap-in-the-face on Friday. Pushed through pretty sporty conditions for a few miles before setting the anchor over our first tog hole of this five hour trip. Bite started off red hot but within thirty minutes slacked off to nothing. Moved to two other wreck with no change in the action. With 90 minutes left in the day we make yet another move and finally find a piece that’s holding some fish that want to play. Sent the guys home with enough tog for a nice dinner.

2018 Reports

09/21/18 & 09/22/18 Two days of really nice mahi action with a couple of super great crews. Friday found us down in the Washington trolling up a very nice class of fish. By noon time we have 30+ in the box and head for the fish cleaner. Saturday is much more sporty and we hang a little closer to the inlet and when I get the word the NW wind has started at the inlet we pull in the spread and head for the slip with 19 in the box, two of which are in the 20# range.

09/19/18 Braved a pretty nasty forecast with a crew who really wanted to spend some time on the water. Turned out to be much nicer than the forecast was calling for but still plenty sporty. False Albacore bite was fairly steady throw in a couple mahi for the table and the crew calls it a day shortly after noon.

09/16/18 Finally back on the water after things the ocean calmed down from hurricane Florence. Made a 40 mile run before finding some weeds. The next few hours provide outstanding trolling action on both mahi and fat alberts. With increasing wind, the threat of pending storms and a pretty full box we pull-the-plug around noon and head for the barn.

09/12/18 First day out since the big wind of the past several days. The guys for today decided they’d rather save a few hours and bucks and hang closer to the beach rather than make the run to the canyons. Ran to where we last had some bites several days ago only to find much colder (8 degrees) and greener water. Looked all over, even spent some time drifting for sea bass, but the fish just didn’t want to bite today. Back in the slip with only a couple in the box.

09/07/18 & 09/08/17 Two days of mid range trolling action. Friday sees some outstanding mahi action on light tackle while Saturday we spend most of the time battling those hard pulling turkeys and managing to get a couple mahi bites too.

09/06/18 Out with DNR Ron and his crew for a day of tilefish action. Bite was good with a mixed bag of bluelines and small goldens. The boat limit was reached shortly before noon so we throw out a quick trolling spread and head west. In the next hour we see four marlin in our spread. The first gets bill wrapped and breaks the leader after a series of jumps. The next fish smashes the long rigger and after a great battle with a very acrobatic white Ron finally has his first white marlin. The last two are just window shopping and don’t take the bait. Last bite of the day is a 8# mahi.

09/04/18 Ran 20 mile south today with two guys from southern York County, PA. After 45 minutes of trolling and no bites we decide to try for some sea bass. The action is hot with a good number of keepers going in the box. During one of the drifts a school of very small mahi show up under our dangler so we grab the spinners and put a 5 or 6 in the box. A couple drifts later the same thing happens and we add 3 or 4 more to the box. Decide to try for a flounder or two before we start trolling again. The first drift sees Chad put a nice 22″ flounder in the box. Throw out a trolling spread and manage to add one more mahi to the box before time runs out. Back in the slip with 28 sea bass, 1 flounder and 9 small mahi in the box.

09/03/18 Today’s guys wanted action and really didn’t care about fish to take home so we made a 15 mile run east and spent the morning doing battle with a constant stream of hard pulling false albacore (aka: turkeys).

09/02/18 Same guys as yesterday for a day of deep drop action. Bite started off slow but within the hour the fish were chewing, sometimes faster than the guys could react. Sometime around noon we reach our limit of tiles so we throw out a trolling spread and point toward the beach. About an hour later we pull everything in and head to the fish cleaners.

09/01/18 Out with a crew for their yearly fishing weekend trip. Due to high winds offshore we’re forced to hang closer to the beach so we spend most of the morning catching bluefish for the smoker with a few other fish mixed in.

08/27/18 thru 08/31/18  Still running 8 hour mid range trips while waiting for some new water to pull in offshore. The mid range action has been good with decent catches of jumbo spanish mackerel, king mackerel,  atlantic bonito, false albacore and some mahi.

08/26/18 The folks today opted to save some money and do the 8 hr mid range trip instead of the 12 hr canyon which was scheduled. After spending some time on a nearby shoal and putting one spanish mackerel and a couple greenies in the box they ask if we could look for a mahi or two. We run to some fish trap gear and within the first 30 minutes we have three mahi in the box. Worked the gear for a while longer with a couple more bites that don’t come tight.

08/24/18 & 08/25/18 Two very tough days spent out deep looking for mahi & marlin. Friday’s trip covered over 30 miles with baits in the water but yielded only one bite. Saturday’s trip yielded one white marlin release and a couple micro mahi bites. Both days combined we must have passed over 20 sets of lobster gear but none holding any mahi.

08/15/18 thru 08/21/18  There’s nothing new under the sun, someone once wrote. Things haven’t changed much since my last report. Canyon action is still tough. Thankfully the mid-range trips are still producing good catches of kings, spanish, greenies and a mahi or two. Some days are better than others. Some days they chew from first light on and some days they don’t seem to get going until just before noon. I’m just thankful that we’ve been able to put good numbers in the box and get back to the slip with happy customers.

08/12/18 thru 08/14/18 With our canyon fish taking a siesta we’ve been encouraging our trips to consider a shorter & cheaper trip targeting a super tasty species Atlantic Bonita. All crews have been cool with the option and very happy with the box at the end of the trip. As a bonus we’ve also managed a couple king & spanish mackerel and a mahi or two. Many of the crews have come back with 40+ in the box.

08/11/18 Started today with a group meeting and the decision was made for action instead of one or two (maybe) big bites. Ran to the hill where we’ve spend the last few days and immediately started filling the box. After two hours the decision is made to head out deeper looking for something big. Several hours later and no bait, birds or bites I spin the boat around and point toward the same general area where we spent the first couple hours of the day. Within two miles of the hill I notice the first bait I’ve seen since leaving the area. Two minutes later our flat line takes off and we put a nice mahi in the box. Ten minutes later we get another bite but that fish misses the hook. Five minutes later we get a small mahi on the bar and he goes in the box too. Worked the area hard but no other bites.

08/10/18 Out with Chris and his two eight year old jr anglers ready to crank on some greenies. The action was fast and furious. Both kids did a great job on the greenies but our lady angler needed just a little help with the kings & spanish. Ended the day with a little shark drifting but never had any takers. Back in the slip with a mixed bag of about 25 fish in the box.

08/09/18 Spent today with Robert and his boys while absolutely crushing the king & spanish mackerel as well as those “oh so tasty” atlantic bonito (aka: greenie). Sometime around 10 am we’ve got a box full of greenies and hit our limit of mackerel so the guys decide to troll for an hour or two and then get the catch back to the fish cleaner.

08/08/18  Hit the inlet today along with what seemed like every boat fishing the WMO. The first ten miles was crazy with boat traffic/wakes. Everything calmed down nice until we hit the 20 fathom line then thing started to build quickly. Pulled her back and threw out the spread at the 35 mile mark working two big hills looking for a bite. After two hours of nothing and steady 15/20 knot winds I ask the guys if they mind if I head out deeper. After a quick team meeting I’m asked if we could head back shallower to what will hopefully be less wind/waves. After a 11 mile run we set out the baits and start looking. First two bites are those darn toothy wahoo and both baits get cut clean off. Next bite is a 7# mahi and he makes it in the box. The next hour is quiet until I come to an area that I loaded with atlantic bonito as well as king & spanish mackerel. After filling the box with these very tasty fish we head back to the fish cleaners for some processing.

08/07/18 After a brief discussion at the dock this morning the dads go with their boys decision of more action as opposed to the big bite and we hear to the shoal that was so good yesterday. First bite takes less than two minutes and the next forty minutes are awesome. Then, like someone flipped the switch, the bite stops! Looked all over the hill the rest of the seven hour trip but could only manage some taylor bluefish, bar jacks and two more spanish. Back in the slip with 11 spanish and 1 king mackerel.

08/06/18 Two trips with similar results. Great action on king & spanish mackerel found us hitting the boat limit before the end of each trip.

08/05/18 Out with a crew from Bedford PA looking for some tuna action. Arrive at the spot at 5:15 am to find around 40 other boats already there and a steady line still coming. Set the anchor and proceeded to get the baits out. After thirty minutes of no action I climb up on the bridge and realize the anchor has slid and we’re in much deeper water than I had wanted. Pulled everything in and reset the anchor. Thirty minutes later, no action, I check the sounder and darn if that anchor didn’t slide again. I honestly can’t ever remember this oversize anchor not grabbing immediately. This time I can anchor where i want to because the 40 some boats has blown up to 100+ and there no room. We decide to make a drift and after another 90 minutes we still haven’t had a pull. I decide to make a 5 mile move to another hill and immediately mark fish. We quickly send out a couple baits and one takes off. The fish is pulling but not quite like a 50# tuna should.  Turns out the bite we’ve been waiting all morning for is a super jumbo skipjack tuna. Make a few more short drifts before throwing up the white flag and making a run for the mackerel/bluefish hill. Spent over an hour on the hill but can’t buy a bite……SMH!!  Trim a few hundred off the trip and head in with my head held low.

08/04/18 Hit the inlet today and was slapped in the face by some fairly stiff winds that were not in the NOAA forecast. At the 10 mile mark I stopped to see if the guys wanted to keep going or hang in closer to the beach. Despite one guy already in sick bay the decision was made to press on. Arrived at the tuna hill around 5:30 and proceeded to set out the chunking baits. About ten minutes later the leader of the crew tells me we need to head in since two of the guys are extremely sick. Sometime around 7:30 we’re back in the slip. Feeling terrible for the guys who weren’t sick I offer them a few hours of shark fishing. We head back out and drift baits for a couple hours. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE take those Bonine pills the evening/night before the trip and get a good nights sleep too.

08/03/18 Ran east today with a great crew from Reading PA that we get to spend a day with every year. Threw the hook (anchor) in 100′ of water and sent out the butterfish. First bite takes less than 10 minutes and after a great fish the hook simply pops out of the fishes mouth less than 10 feet from the gaff. Next bite comes in about 15 minutes and that bluefin goes in the box. One hour later we have two more bluefin in the box (our limit of “unders”) and decide to try and find a mahi or two before heading in ahead of the forecast afternoon winds. Worked some sea bass gear and on the final flag we manage to get Tigger his mahi.

08/02/18 Today was to be a marlin trip with the same guys as yesterday but the forecast said no way. Picked up a last minute bachelor party crew from PA who wanted to try a couple hours of shark fishing. Set up a few miles south of the inlet and waited. First shark, a small spinner, showed up in about 45 minutes. From that point on we had action about every 15 minutes but the sharks all seemed to be the small. Finally our deep rod gets bit and after a few minutes we have a 275# sand tiger next to the boat for pics.

08/01/18 Out with a father and son from upstate NJ who despite the forecast wanted to brave the winds and try for some bluefin.  Arrived at the lump in some sporty conditions and set out a quick trolling spread before changing over to chunking. Within 15 minutes we have our first bite and Matt does a great job on the reel and a 48# bluefin goes in the box. A while later we get a mahi bite and dad takes care of this little guy. By now the winds are cranking and the guys decide to troll for a little while longer then head in before things go from hateful to horrible.

07/31/18 Sea Bass tagging for a wind farm impact study

07/30/18 Today find me running east with a family from WI looking for some action for their kids. Spent the morning with a constant bent rod catching spanish & king mackerel and bluefish. Sometime around 11 the winds came up and thing got choppy enough that our 8 year old lady angler was getting a little scared so we headed back in with a very nice catch. Got into the slip just in time for more rain.

07/29/18 PM Trip  Out with two families for a couple hours of action on Taylor Bluefish and Spanish Mackerel. Bite was great and everyone had a ball. Sent the crew home with seven very nice size Spanish and having released countless blues.

07/29/18 Started today with the guys trying to decide what they’d like to do on their eight hour trip. Two of the guys wanted a little less fishing time but wanted to look for  bluefin . The other three wanted action and small fish were ok, they didn’t wish to fish all day for only a couple bites which has been our tuna fishing the last two days. The final decision is to have more fishing time and action on small fish. Arrived at the lump and proceeded to put about 15 fish in the box in the first thirty minutes.  At that point things kinda went downhill when the guys decided they didn’t want to mess with these fish and wanted mahi which have been a little scares the last week or so.  Moved over to some sea bass gear that was nearby and proceeded to work that gear and another set of gear the rest of the trip. We were able to manage one 8# mahi around the gear but that was our only bite. Back in the slip it was apparent the guys were not happy at all with the trip and headed back to DC with their catch

07/28/18 A day of tuna fishing with a crew of super nice guys from North East, MD. Arrived at the hill to find a 50/50 mix of trollers and chunkers. Dave throws out a trolling spread and we weave our way through all the boats not really seeing much of anything happening. Finally in late morning we get our first bite and a small yellowfin goes in the box. Our next bite seems to take forever and as the rigger clips releases I see a 15# mahi come flying out of the water before landing on its side making a huge splash. That crazy jump was enough to throw the hook….kinda the way our day is going. Sometime around noon we decide to join the crowd and throw some chunks. After two hours and no pulls we head to the barn. Today the fish won!

07/27/18 Out with a father his two boys from the Show Me State. Morning is decent with a couple of mahi bites and two of the three make it in the box. Our first tuna bite comes around 9:30 and after a good fight we have Joe’s 50# bluefin in the box.  Our next encounter is a small skipjack followed shortly by a 25# yellowfin. The guys call it a day around noon to get some beach time before making the trip back to Missouri.

07/26/18 Back on the water after the longest stretch of bad wind I can every remember for July. The guys want to go even with the warning of very sporty conditions. The morning bite is pretty decent and by 9 am we have two bluefin in the box and a third that pulled off less than 10′ from the gaff. With stiff winds turning more to the west I point the boat toward OC and troll west until we hit shallow water and pick-up and run for the barn early.

07/19/18 Long forgotten trip post….sorry! Don’t remember much except what the picture shows.

07/18/18 Today began with lots of discussion about the days forecast. The decision is made to try and get to the lump where the tuna have been holding and then come back closer to shore for the last few hours and try and put some kings in the box. As we clear the north jetty its apparent the north winds have already started and the guys decide to pass on the tuna and hang tight to the beach and look for some kings. The king mackerel bite is better than I’ve seen it years and by 9 am we have our limit and head back to the dock in order to get one guy, who’s not having a good day, back on solid land.

07/16/18 Finally our tuna have moved inside the 30 fathom line making our run time this morning much shorter. The first hill I look at doesn’t seem to be holding anything so I head for another area 3 miles away. First bite come after about thirty minutes and we put a 10# mahi in the box. The next two bites see two yellowfin going on the box. Several hours of boredom are followed by another mahi, a few skipjack and one more very feisty yellowfin.

07/15/18 Sea bass tagging for a study involving the pending wind farm.

07/14/18 Spent today with two couples from PA looking to take some tasty fish back home with them. The first two hours provide fairly constant action on marlin, tuna and mahi. The bite absolutely died around 9 am so we pull in the gear and head to where I passed some weeds on the way out. After thirty minute of searching we locate some big weed patches and spend the rest of the day adding mahi to the box. Back in the slip with one yellowfin, 19 mahi and two white marlin releases.

07/13/18 Out with a crew of six who decided to enter the OC Tuna Tournament even though they only have one day to fish. Pushed through heavy seas to arrive at the tuna grounds shortly after 7 am. Within five minutes we have a blue marlin tracking one of our spreader bars. The bar is reeled in and that darn marlin pops up and crushes our long rigger. After a blistering run the fish goes deep creating a big belly in the line that we’re not aware of until its too late and the braid rubs something on the boat and parts. Our next two bites are two white marlin which we’re able to get the baits away from before the get the hook. Next bite is a small mahi and he goes in the box. Finally we get the right bite and Dave puts a 65# yellowfin in the box. A little while later we get jumped by the yellowfin again and three rods go down. Sometime during the fight two of the fish are lost but we’re able to put one more respectable fish in the box. By noon the seas have built to a point that I decide we need to go especially after a wave breaks into the cockpit. Back in OC the crew is ecstatic to find out that they’ve won nearly $1700 in the daily calcutta for heaviest stringer for boats 35′ and under. As of this posting Fin Chaser is tied for second place for heaviest fish and first place for stringer weight for boats 35′ and under.

07/11/18 & 07/12/18  Two days of fishing with the same family who are in town from Washington state. Wednesday we decide to target mahi and find outstanding numbers holding in some huge weed mats. Our limit is reached before noon and the guys decide to head in allowing them time to package the fish for the plane ride home. Thursday we head south looking for some tuna. After three hours of fishing we have five fat yellowfin in the box. The decision is made to head in allowing time for packaging to meet the airlines requirements.

07/10/18 After a couple rare days off, we’re back on the water with Jim and the boys. The first couple hours provide steady trolling action on mahi and two white marlin releases. Sometime around 11:00 we find the mother load of mahi holding close to a weed patch. The light tackle comes out and we spend about an hour filling the box with mahi. When the guys have enough we head south and within thirty minutes we’ve added three small yellowfin the the box and release one that doesn’t make the cut. A couple more bites that don’t come tight round out the day.

07/06/18 Broke the inlet today only to find most of the fleet heading back in due to the stiff south winds. Talked to the guys and we decide to spend a couple hours fairly tight to the beach looking for taylor bluefish, king & spanish mackerel. Bite was great and within a few hours we had a box full of a mixed catch.

07/05/18 Made a 55 mile run south today with a crew of four regulars looking to bend a rod. First two hours find us trolling among a couple schools of tuna who don’t seem to be interested in a trolled bait. I decide its the perfect day to put up the new (last year) toy, our greenstick. The first time we find them on the surface and pull through the breaker goes and we put a 50# yellowfin in the box. The next few hours are spent chasing the birds and seeing some of the most violent tuna strikes you can imagine. We put two more in the boat, one a 60# pig, and have two other explosions that miss the hook. Manage to add three mahi to the box while fighting one of the yf.

07/04/18 A shorter day today with a crew looking to spend 8 hours on the boat allowing other fun for the afternoon. Spent the morning looking for some king & spanish mackerel but all we could find were endless amounts of small taylor bluefish. Spent about an hour drifting with our shark baits out but only had one window shopper.

07/03/18 Another day of outstanding mahi action with the Wagner crew from PA. Action started as soon as we located the weeds and I doubt 10 minutes went by with a bite. Finished the day with some triggerfish action on spinners. Back in the slip two hours early with 21 mahi and 23 triggers in the box.

07/02/18  Made a run south today with a crew of NYC’s finest firefighters in hopes of some mahi action. Searched briefly before finding the weeds that were holding fish yesterday.  The next several hours was mahi fishing paradise both trolling and light tackle. After their fill of mahi we stopped on a floating bucket and added a few triggerfish to the box. With all the fish they need I’m told to head for the barn. In the slip nearly two hours early with about 25 mahi in the box and a couple triggers too.

07/01/18 Broke the inlet today with a crew from PA headed 55 miles south. Spent the first two hours in some crazy weeds allowing us to put a couple mahi in the box. pointed the boat west thinking we might find some fish in 40 fathoms. Along the way a white marlin pops up behind our short rigger and then disappears. Fifteen seconds later he shows up behind my long rigger. From there he moves over to our shotgun rod and finally takes the bait. A few minutes later Larry has his first marlin next to the boat for a release. Ended the day in more crazy weeds adding a few more mahi to the box.

06/30/18 Out with Ryan and the boyz  from PA. Our first encounter takes place after about two hours of dragging bait when a white marlin hangs himself and is released after a good fight. Our next encounter is about an hour later when I see a school of small tuna a few hundred yards off the side but by the time we get there the school has gone down. A second pass fools one and the blt yellowfin goes in the box. Final bite of the day happens with just minutes left in the day and we put one of two mahi in the box.

06/29/18  Made a 55 mile run east with a crew from northeast PA.  First hit take about 90 minutes when Dave notices some skipjack next to the boat. I swing through and one by one the rods go down. When I finally put the boat in neutral we have seven fish on. After a few minutes of total chaos we manage to put six small yellowfin in the box. Next bite takes quite a while and after tearing line off the reel everything goes slack and the fish is gone….???? Finished the day going three for five on mahi, one a 15# gaffer.

06/27/18 Headed to the deep in some fairly sporty seas with four guys from PA. At the 35 mile mark one og the younger guys isn’t feeling too great and the guys decide to trim the trip to 8 hours and look for the elusive bluefin. First two hours produce nothing even though the slicks look promising. Finally one of our bars get nailed and we put a small Bluefin in the box. With a little time let in the day I make a run to the area that’s been holding the jumbo bluefin and birds but after an hour of looking its apparent they’re gone.

06/26/18  Ran to the 100 fathom line before Dave throws out the spread. First two hours produce nothing. Finally we get a mahi bite but the fish manages to throw the hook just feet from the boat. Next bite is a double header tuna bite and one small yellowfin goes in the box. A while later we get a second chance at a mahi and this one goes in the box too. Last bite is a huge explosion on our bar but the crazy fish somehow misses the hook. Pretty bummed out with only two fish in the box but then I hear some radio chatter and I actually feel fortunate.

06/25/18  Heading east today with a crew of three from TX who are in the middle of a northeast fishing tour. The fear of the dreaded twelve hour sickness presses us to stay somewhat close to the beach so we try and find those finicky bluefin.  After about an hour of looking I see what I think is them. With great anticipation we’re almost there when suddenly I realize its a school of HUGE bluefish but its too late. The 15 lb+ blue barracudas ravage our spread but provide this TX trio all the fight they want. After another pass and more action I pull away still looking for the bluefin. Finally we find some bluefin pushing water but after a few passes our main angler isn’t doing well and we pull the plug on the day.

06/24/18  Out for revenge on this 10 hour trip in the same area as yesterday. This time we get lucky and have the fish right next to the boat within the first 30 minutes of fishing. Three rods take off and its game on. After a epic struggle we put a 95# bluefin in the box. Twenty minutes later we release a 110# to fight another day. Unfortunately the third fish pulled the hook at some point while we were dealing with the first two fish. Worked all over the area the rest of the day trying to find some smaller fish but the “unders” seem to have vanished.

06/23/18 After hearing stories of big bluefin 35 miles off the beach that will not bite I decide to give them a try. After an hour of trolling we find the birds dive bombing bait  and every now and then a tuna would explode out of the water. Pulled around trying to get close enough but every time we’d get near them they’d go down. Finally we get right next to a school and both bars get blasted. One misses but the other is pulling good drag when suddenly the line goes slack. Tyler reels in the line and we find a crimp broke causing a nice bluefin and a $150 brand new bar to swim away. Worked the fish the remainder of this 8 hour trip but could never get quite close enough for another bite.

06/21/18 While running east I get a hot tip about a great looking area 3 miles to my south so I spin the boat around and Dave throws out a quick spread. Arrived to find less than impressive marks but do manage to put a 12# mahi in the box. After wasting an hour on nothing we pick up and continue running east while hearing of a couple fish caught first thing this morning where I was headed. Arrived in the canyon to find the weeds that everyone is complaining about. After about two hours of constant weeded up baits the charter asks if we can go back inside and look for a bluefin so I make the 15 mile run back west. Set the spread and start looking. After about an hour our bird get exploded on but the fish misses the hook. Worked the area hard the rest of the day but never get another bite.

06/20/18 Ran east with high hopes since the tuna chewed the bottom off boats yesterday. After the first few hours it was apparent today that ain’t gonna happen. Ran back inside and starting pounding the hills for bluefin. Finally around noon we have our first bluefin in the box. A few more passes, another bite that doesn’t come tight and that’s all she wrote for today….flat calm water rarely any good for tuna action.

06/19/18  Research work on the pending wind farms construction impact on black sea bass.

06/18/18 Another long run in search of tuna. Our first hit takes about 30 minutes. Tuna are blowing up all over our spread and five find the hook. With only three anglers its tough to keep the fish tight and one pulls off after a minute but we still have four hooked up. Somehow we manage to put all four in the box and these are some nice fat yellowfins. Worked among the rest of the boats all day but the bite never really turned on and some excellent boats went home with only one or two fish so we head home feeling very fortunate to have four in the box.

06/16/18 Ran south to the same area that was so good to us yesterday. After about 90 minutes of trolling two of our bars get blown up on but only one fish finds the hook and after a good fight we put a fat yellowfin in the box. About thirty minutes later a blue marlin crashes our long rigger and after Justin’s 50 minute battle Tyler has the leader and the 300-350# blue is an official release. The next few hours produce countless weed and skipjack bites but no yellowfin. With less than 30 minutes left in the day a small yellowfin picks off one of our baits and he’s thrown in the box too.

06/15/18 Made a big run south looking for some tuna today with a rescheduled crew from last year. After two hours of looking with no results I decide to make a 10 mile run farther south based on some “top secret” info. Dave sets the spread and within 15 minutes we have our first yellowfin in the box. The next two hours are what tuna fishing should be. Shorty before noon we hit our limit which is a good thing since the crew of four is totally shot from fighting these fat yellowfins. Back in the slip with 12 in the box and several others released.

06/14/18  Out for a 10 hour tuna/shark combo trip. Arrived at the bluefin hill to find whales, birds and dolphins everywhere. Worked among the nature show for nearly two hours with a pull or even seeing a tuna air out on bait. Decided to troll back toward where I planned to set up for shark fishing. Less than a mile inside the whales our flat line gets nailed and we put a small bluefin in the box. A couple more passes and our bar gets crushed and another bluefin goes in the box. The next forty-five minutes produces three more misses before #3  finds the hook and is added to the box. Lines are pulled in and we make a 20 mile run and set up in hopes of a thresher shark. After ninety minutes and no pulls the guys decide to get their bluefins back in to the fish cleaner.

06/10/18 Another day of tile fishing with Austin and the boys. The day seemed to be a carbon copy of yesterday but with added current and not as many sizable goldens. Within the first hour we’re up to 4 pounds of lead and still not really holding bottom.  This was by far the worst current/drift I’ve had to deal with in years. With about 45 minutes left in the day I hear a report of a little bite happening close to our course home so we quickly bring in the bottom baits and I push the engines to 2400.  Arrive at the spot with 30 minutes to fish. We throw out a quick bluefin spread and within 10 minutes we have a bluefin on the rod. After a nice fight Austin gaffs his first tuna (mate Dave had today off) a 40# bluefin. Trolled a little longer but no other bites. Back in the slip with 16 tilefish to 18# and one bluefin.

06/09/18 Ran north today looking for a better tilefish bite than yesterday. First two hours were terrible. With only three fish on the box and hardly any bite I start looking around. Finally around 10:30 the sky brightens the current slacks off a little and the fish start to bite. The next few hours produces a fair catch but a few very respectable golden tiles and the largest swallowtail bass (one beautiful fish) I’ve ever seen. Back in the slip a few short of our limit but with one golden pushing 25#, one at 20# and two more in the high teens.

06/07/18 & 06/08/18  Two days of deep drop action. Thursday’s crew had an outstanding morning nailing some of the largest sea bass I’ve seen in quite a while. Mixed in were with the 40 sea bass was a limit of average size blueline tilefish.  Friday was a bit tougher and the numbers and size wasn’t like the day before. Back in the slip with a fair catch but no limits.

05/31/18 Fun day of sea bass action with a three generation local crew from MD. Bite was very good, even had some rare “keepers” mixed in. Sent 22 to the cleaning table.

05/27/18 Half-day wreck trip finds good action on Sea Bass with a better keeper ratio than in past trips for this crew from PA. Back in the slip with close to 20 in the box.

05/25/18 & 05/26/18 A tale of two trips. Great to be back on the water after last weekends crazy rain. Friday’s trip finds us in calm seas with some very eager sharks. Takes about an hour for our first bite but after that it was game-on releasing four blue sharks to 120# and three mako sharks to 100#. Finished the day playing with some sea bass.  Saturday finds us in very sporty conditions and tight lipped sharks. After a couple hours of drifting around we only have one mako release and one other encounter with a blue shark that didn’t want anything with a hook in it. Spent the last two hours of the day messing with the sea bass.

05/15/18 Opening day of Sea Bass found us leaving the dock a little late. No big deal until we get to the wreck I was hoping to drop on and another boat is already sitting there. Ran another couple miles to an area that’s normally good. First few hours was mixed, one drift would produce a couple for the box and then nothing. Moved around all day working any bite I could fine to try and bend a rod. Sometime around 9 am the SW wind started to crank making things a little sporty. Around 11 am the north current started running all but killing what little bite we had. Buddy of mine dropped a Go Pro down and said there were plenty of fish but they were tight to the bottom and just sitting there….crazy fish!! Back in the slip with a little more than half our limit.

05/11/18 & 05/12/18  Two pretty tough days of Tog fishing. Friday’s bite was the better of the two and lasted until about noon at which time the current started screaming out of the north and the bite immediately shut down. Saturday was plain terrible. Current against the wind had the boat laying sideways in the trough, horrible slow bite and flies getting blown off the land from the SW winds. Sent each crew home with enough fresh tog for a nice fish fry.

05/05/18 Much nice conditions and much better action than yesterday. Spent the day working one area with a steady stream of 15″ fish coming over the rail. Fortunately there were enough keepers mixed in with the throw backs to keep everyone interested. Back in the slip with 11 in the box. The guys went back to PA with two heavy bags full of those oh so tasty fillets.

05/04/18  Back on the water again…finally! Broke the inlet and received a rude slap-in-the-face on Friday. Pushed through pretty sporty conditions for a few miles before setting the anchor over our first tog hole of this five hour trip. Bite started off red hot but within thirty minutes slacked off to nothing. Moved to two other wreck with no change in the action. With 90 minutes left in the day we make yet another move and finally find a piece that’s holding some fish that want to play. Sent the guys home with enough tog for a nice dinner.