Fishing Reports July 1 to July 31
With a lot of the weekend crowd gone we still have a ton of people on the water now that the 4th of July holiday is here. The weekdays are a little better and if you go way back in the shallow flats you pretty much have them all to yourself. It is going to get real crazy down here in Cape May, this week so I wanted to get in a trip before it all starts. With a good new moon high tide Monday night I decided to work the back bay. Fly fishing buddy Larry and I left the dock around 5:45 pm and headed to the back bay sod banks and flats. We started where I found some small bait fish and the best striper action last week. Was surprised to find the water much cooler. It was 68 degrees even with all the hot sun during the day that usually heats up the mud flats. We worked a good amount of prime sod banks for over and hour and never saw a single bait fish or even got a hit.
Second area we tried was just as bad. Our third move finally paid off. Water here was 71 degrees. Larry got the first three stripers on a half and half fly fished on intermediate and I got my first fish on a popping fly using floating line and missed a couple both of which I almost got to the boat. We continued to work this area and found three creek mouths that produced a bass here and there. Most of the fish were decent size with only one on the night being around 15 inches. I kept using a popping fly and Larry switched to a gurgler. Fish all hit very aggressively and made some nice jumps either on the original hit or shortly after getting hooked up. Fishing in 3 to 4 feet of water they made some nice runs making for some exciting fishing.
As the tide started out I saw the first signs of any bait fish. It was all the way up on the water that covered the sod banks. Guess with the colder water that came in on the high tide the really warm water was up on the 6 or 8 inches of water on top of the sod banks. After the sun set we made one last move to a spot that I wanted to try before heading in. We saw a fish pop on some bait and Larry cast his gurgler right on that spot and a bass immediately took it, made a nice jump and he caught the last fish before we headed in at 9:15pm.
All in all it was a great night. We both had a good time. We caught 11 stripers, mostly on poppers and missed a good amount of surface strikes and were treated to another beautiful sunset. Only downer on the night was we had our first confirmed kills of green heads. They were not too bad as we were both wearing long pants and long sleeve shirts, but it was the first trip that I have seen them. (Now we will have them till it gets cold)
After cleaning the boat I was walking off the dock when a bass splashed in the dock light shadow line. (first one that I have heard or seen this year.) Don't know what there was to feed on as I have yet to see any bait fish of any kind around the docks. Made one cast and hooked up with a nice little 18 inch fish and about 5 casts later I got another one just about the same size. After about 20 more casts with out a hit I headed up to the car.