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.