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Sunday, October 03, 2004: Waves: 2-3 building short-period wind swell. Brisk north winds all day. Water clarity: Ideal ? churned enough for bassing.

I really thought I?d have a bass-kicking report but it just ain?t so, Joe. Sure there have been bass taken all along the frontbeach, mainly on popper and a few on clams but the fishing pressure is high ? to insane, in the case of the LBI Fishing Club?s World Series. But I drove a huge section of beach a couple times yesterday and the general feel was a bit frustrated ? except by those who thoroughly enjoy the small things in life, for instant: email --
hi jay saturday - had a great day on holgate we caught a load of king fish and lots of bluefish then the rains came we were only about 1000 yards off the entrance we had a ball see ya the leavey boys joe&walt.
The same croaker, kingfish, bluefish (and even a couple small drum) played out in many areas, though I also ran into a slew of ?slim pickin?s? reports from surf casters.
Regarding bass, I should note there continues to be a fair bit of bassing from town (Beach Haven) down to the tip of Holgate. Lots of popper people are taking advantage of some tightly balled mullet, which can be found about every third jetty and in certain Holgate slews. Playing the pods is the best chance of meeting stripers but I can also note from firsthand experience that big bass rolling on the baitfish are more often seen than felt. I threw everything I had at one large mullet-chaser in Beach haven Terrace and I left it still bustin? water every time the mullet tried to move around the end of the jetty.
I also heard a few grumpy reports from folks heading off Barnegat Inlet for fluke or sea bass. Walt P. was all but skunked and David N. emailed ?I had much better fluking before the storm.?
What continues to please is the weakfishing in west Barnegat Bay. Bag limits (I?m note sure why anyone would want that many weakies) were claimed via a number of reports. These are not huge fish but often a couple inches over keeper size. Similar hot weakie hooking was had down near Little Egg around the inlet and over toward Great Bay. That action has a higher spike count.
There were actually some upbeat bluefish report with slammers finally coming on scene to greet the bunker schools. For instance: email -- J, What a blast on Friday working the large schools of bunker off the beach. Snag and drop. Large Blues under the bunker waiting for some poor hapless bunker to break loose from the tightly packed school. I am always amazed what a blue can do to a large bunker. Blues ranged from 9-11 pounds. Also snapped a med weight expensive brand name rod in half. St.something or other?
Those heftier blues are waiting a bit off the beach for the LBI Surf Fishing Tourney to begin next Saturday. Have you signed up yet? If you?re new to the event check out .
Buggy note: The beaches of LBT are generally in excellent condition, especially when compared to recent years. A few testy spots, one near the large jetty 39th Street (?) Brant Beach. Still, you really have to air down to make the ride safely. Also, a legion of dog walkers are now on the beach. Please take it extra slow in their vicinity, as dog owners tend to panic when they see a buggy coming as Spot and Fido run ahead of them. Often the dogs will try to come right up to the buggy to see who?s on their beach. Come to a complete stop if that happens. I find I begin seeing the same dog walkers and when they know you?re conscientiously monitoring their dog they appreciate it and begin the waving thing. Good karma.
I had a somewhat aggressive email from a fellow who took me to task for not mentioning that the new bass regs are ?only temporary? and ?will be changed this winter.? All right: The new bass regs are only temporary and will be changed this winter. Maybe. I?ve heard ? no end ? from the jolted northern and JCAA contingencies that they will try to oust the new laws for their preferred two bass of 28 inches. As I said in the overdrawn debate prior to the chosen bass option that I simply reflected what I heard on my websites and through The SandPaper that a majority ? I?ll admit it might have been a slim majority when the boating public voiced in ? wanted an eatable slot fish. I would say that there is, in fact, a large enough 2-28 sector (again, primarily north) who might raise the ruckus needed to change the laws by as early as next spring. Hopefully a democratic enough system of hearings will occur to make the choice a fair one. The trophy tag thing is essentially irreparable as long as the Division of Fish and Wildlife remain under funded by the state.

[ 10-03-2004, 09:14 AM: Message edited by: NIGHTSTRIKES ]
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