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I remember our fly club had a fishing day at the Tuckahoe Lake, shorty after they stocked and we saw about 10 ospreys working the shallow lake picking up trout one after another. Only saw two ospreys working at Cox Hall pond where I took the kids on Saturday. Might try a small baby bunker fly. I have had trout take it while fishing for large mouth.
I tried a couple of times for stocked trout on the fly but got zilch down in the south jersey mudholes they stock. Panfish? yes. But those pesky rainbows, no. Think they go into shock trying to outrun the Cormorants who take up residence every April after the NJ F&W trucks drop off their meals.
Bit of a disappointment. Had the young grand kids down for the a few days and the wind blew like stink. Was hoping to get them out in the boat to do some fishing or dolphin watching but the winds just didn't allow for it and today the only day the wind was down a bit they were to leave at noon. Took them freshwater fishing Saturday afternoon and that was bust too as we had 25 mph plus winds making fishing with bobbers and worms tough at best. With all the rain, wind and the still cold water the sunfish were just not around or active.
After they left for home I went to race remote control sailboats in Ocean City. Got there and the wind seemed to really be down to almost nothing. There was enough to move are boats around, but it's more fun when there is a good wind.
Got back home to Cape May and with the light winds decided to go striper fishing for a couple of hours. Made a few phone calls and no one could go, so I did a solo trip. Left the dock at 4:15 pm and headed to the ocean. Water was fairly dirty from all the wind and had a fair amount of weed that kept finding my fly line. Water was 54.5 degrees along the beach and there was some decent wave action left over from all the wind the last few days. First two spots nothing. Not a hit. Third spot I got 4 bass, one after another, all about the same size 17 to 18 inches. Again they hit chartreuse/white clousers fished on sinking line.
About 5:45 pm. the wind picked up pretty strong. Looked like the frontal system was coming through. Before heading in I decided to take a quick shot to the back bay and see if any of the warm water creek mouths were holding any fish. (First time I have tried the back this year.) Tried three creeks and found 57 to almost 60 degree water but no signs of any life so I headed back to the dock at 6:15 pm.
With really nice weather today I was definately going to go out fishing again. Buddy Paul, met me at the dock at 11:30. With southerly winds we headed out to the inlet to fish the ocean. Water was much cleaner than yesterday and the it was 53.5 degrees. Still a little bit of sea swell in close to the beach so we had to be on our toes as I like to fish right in the was behind the breakers if I can. Did see some pods of bunker coming along the beach. Dolphins and ospreys were working them but we found no fish under them. Working close to the beach in 4 to 6 feet of water we found some stripers. All much better than yesterday, size wise. We caught 14 bass with the smallest being 17 1/2 inches. They were all caught again on chartreuse/white clousers fished on sinking line close to the bottom.
It was a great day to be on the water. We had a bald eagle come down and try and steal a bunker from an osprey and on the way back to the inlet about 100 yards off between the rock pile and the Entrance Buoy there were 3 or 4 whales. Inside the inlet we saw another bald eagle sitting on a dead tree. We fished for 2 1/2 hours, had some good action and headed back in being satisfied with our efforts.
I am getting spoiled. I like these short action filled trips where you don't have to be out all day. Call it a hit and run trip. Fish prime time and tide, catch some fish and then come in.
With all the strong winds we have had lately, it has been tough to sit on the dock and wait for a nice day. Wasn't planning on fishing today but wind looked a lot lower than the predicted. Checked the weather and they said it was 5 to 8 mph winds getting to maybe 12 mph in the afternoon. Made a quick change of plans and met a friend at the boat at noon to fish the out going tide. With the wind fron the north west we headed to the ocean. Water was 52.5 a bit brownish from all the wind we have had the last few days and a fairly decent swell making it difficult to get in as close to the beach as I would of liked. Wind was already stronger than they predicted and on the first cast I got a nice 20 inch striper using a chartreuse/white clouser on sinking line.
About 10 minutes into our fishing and it got really dark like it was going to rain and the wind kicked up into the 20's making controlling the position of the boat a full time job. We hung in there with the wind not letting up and fished for 2 1/2 hours and catching 13 stripers between us. Nothing big but nice fun size with 18 to 20 inch fish and even had one striper that had to be a whole 8 inches long. Was fun to get out again, but it was tough fighting the wind with the fly rod. We looked for a couple of areas where we might hide from the wind a bit, but it was all coming from a bad direction so we headed in.
About an hour after I got home the wind looked like it died down a bit.
After about and hour of fishing with maybe 2 bites a dumb fish finally grabbed one of the line and hooked himself good. Boys all got excited as if they caught the fish themselves. I told them it was a good team effort. A yellow perch saved the day. They all got to see the fish, its spines, feel the little teeth in it's mouth and how I carefully removed the hook, not to injure the fish. We got a nice group photo and released the fish.
Like typical fishermen, they all wanted to fish the spot where the (big one?) was caught. We fished for about another half hour and with everyone a bit cold the lure of heading back for hot chocolate we called it a day. Not the fishing day I intended for them but they had a good time and hopefully will get to go fishing again.
Two of the boys were my grandsons so it super good for me.
As the day wore on it got cloudier and colder and the wind didn't seem to let up at all. As part of their badge work they had to take a long stick, tie a line on it with a hook and a bobber. (Normally without all the heavy winds they would be able to catch with just this.) Being prepared I had regular fishing rods for all the boys and as a special treat for the boys I bought each one of them a nice little tackle box and filled it with hooks, sinker, bobbers, snap swivels, some rubber swiming baits, spinner lures, regular lures, some jigs and rubber worms. This way they would always have enought stuff to go fishing another time and could bug their dads to take them back to the lake or the river.
We got to the lake set up the primitive poles but with the wind and brush around the banks we went straight to the regular rod. Lucky there was only six scouts as between untangling line, getting hooks out of over hanging tree and reverse reeling handle off spinning reel I was as busy as a one armed paper hanger. With all the rain and the cold weather the fish were just not bitting like normal. The boy hung in there much better than I expected. They even found another use for the tackle boxes. (a seat)
Since my last saltwater trip it has been pretty windy and I haven't gotten out in the boat. Sunday I raced remote control sailboats in Mt Laurel and then went over to scout out the lake where I was to take my grandson's cub scout group to fish on Monday after school. Did the book part of earning their badge, the week before and Monday would be there day to try out what they have learned. Sunday it was a bit of a drizzle and I caught a yellow perch on an gold brown baitfish pattern and found an area where the boys could fish that was easy with no branches and snags. It all looked good until Sunday night and they were calling for wind 30 to 40 mph.
Monday morning the wind was howling. I drove the two blocks to the Delaware River to see how strong the wind was and found that our fishing after school was going to be super tough as the spot I scouted out the day before would have the wind blowing right into our faces. With the high winds I went back to the lake to see if I could find another area on the lee shore where we would at least have the wind to our back. Found a spot but it was more difficult to get to. Had to go down a 30 foot slope that had poison ivy and lots of thorns. During my scout out I put a bobber and worm out and got a couple of small sunfish. On the fly I got a decent largemouth, so we could fish later in the day.
Got up Wednesday morning and it was sunny with not much wind. Looked at the weather and they were predicting NW winds to about 14 mph. Perfect for fishing the ocean front surf line. Quickly got done the few thing that had to be done and met Buddy Paul again at the boat at 11:00 am. Hit the inlet with the last of the tide coming in. Worked around the inlet rocks for a short time hoping we might find a bigger bass, but it was dead. Neither of us got a hit. Moved to the beach surf line were where we caught on 3 of the 4 jetties that we fished. With perfect conditions we had perfect fishing. Water was 48 to 49 degrees and we found good schools of small fish In 6 to 4 feet of water, right behind where the waves would break on the beach. Most of the fish were in the 17 to 18 inch size with a couple of better ones. We even had three times where we were both hooked up at the same time. Fish all hit the same chartreuse/white clouser flies fished close to the bottom with sinking fly line. We fished for 3 hours and at 2:00 pm with the wind getting stronger and a little annoying we called it a day after catching a total of 30 small stripers. Fish were still bitting good even when we left. I think if we stayed another couple of hours we could of caught close to 50.
Needless to say we were both pretty happy campers and smiling on the way back in. Could not of asked for a better few hours of fishing fun.
Monday I decided I would launch for the season Tuesday morning. It was suppose to be light winds and sunny. Woke up and found it to be a bit foggy with a cool northeast wind blowing 10 to 12 mph making it feel cold and damp. Launched about 10:30 am. No one at the boat ramp. Put the boat in and it started on the first turn over and was running smooth. Ran over to my slip and ran all the dock lines. 11:30 am my buddy Paul and I decided to head out to the ocean and fish. (we traditionally always fish the first day that I put in.) Run to the inlet was cold and damp and the tide was just starting to roll out. Saw one other boat out. He was plugging along the inlet rocks. It was a bit cold and raw and the water temp was 47.4 degrees. We ran down the beach to fish close to the surf and work some rock jetties. Seas were a little bigger than we would of liked and with the fair amount of wind maneuvering was a bit annoying at times. Paul caught the first striper of the day on a chartreuse/white clouser fly, using sinking line. Felt good to get the first striper of the season. A little while later I got about a 20 inch striper on the same type of set up. I lost mine trying to pull it up out of the water without the use of a net. (only use a net on the better fish)
Fishing was fairly slow. We each got another small striper. In total we hat 5 hits and landed 4 fish. Working the fly on the bottom with short slow strips seem to work the best. With no sun and it being cold and damp we knocked off at 1:30 pm and headed in for some lunch.
Even with only small fish, It was a good way to start the fishing season and now that the boat is in I can look forward to getting in some fishing when we get some good tides and weather.
Fishing Reports April 1 to April 30
Seems like spring has been slow in getting here. Worked the last two nice days and got my boat completely ready for the water. Broke my spirit yesterday as I worked on the boat. It would of been the perfect day to launch and fish as it was sunny with very light winds. Have a fairly busy schedule, but hope to get it in as soon as possible. Need a nice day as I usually fine the best fishing this time of the year in the ocean close to structure and the beach. Strong winds from the wrong direction or big surf make that impossible. Don't seem to see much life in the back bay until later in the month and early may. Anxious to get that first striper on the fly even though this time of the year they are mostly dinks.
Fishing Reports April 1 to April 30