It's been another decent week of fishing here at Fisherman's Wharf. Capt. H.D. actually loaded up and came home a little early from his Long-Range Tile fishing trip this past weekend, The Croakers have been plentiful on the inshore charters and the Half-Day trips, and the Flounder continue to both please and frustrate anglers on a daily basis.
There really weren't enough adjectives to describe the trip that Capt. H had on his most recent deep drop trip for the Tiles. I was there when the boat hit the dock because I had been informed of the huge success that they had and to say I was impressed with what I saw most likely would be an understatement. Cooler upon cooler upon cooler full of both the Blue Line and the Golden Tile fish were carried off of the boat for nearly an hour once the ropes were secured. Capt. H hit the docks before dark actually right around 7:00 but the fish cleaning and the weighing of fish would go on for hours. Golden Tilefish up to 50 pounds and Blueliners that mostly weighed in double digits to the upper teens graced each and every cooler on the boat. It was truly a spectacle that you would have to see to believe, they had some true world class fish on this trip and everyone walked away with a big mess of fish, some sore arms, and some unforgettable memories from what could possibly have been a once in a lifetime trip .
Much unlike Capt. H's coolers full of fish I have spent the last 30 some days straight hunting down the Flounder and one of my favorite sayings when the folks bring the big coffin coolers to the dock is "coolers are optional on flounder trips, you may not need one". Not that the fishing is that bad but lets be realistic how much space could you need for a limit of Flounder if your lucky enough to catch one. Even if all the fish are six pounds they still stack pretty nicely in a 48 quart cooler that fits under the bench and still has plenty of room for ice, drinks, and your lunch! We have a big box full of ice in the back of the boat that will hold hundreds of them if you get in a bind. All tolled in the last seven days since my last report we have once again landed well over another 200 keepers and that includes a day when we only landed four keepers and one day where we only landed six keepers for the entire trip.
Conditions have been the key to our success as par normal with our Flounder fishing. We have encountered a few days with very little or even no drift and there has also been times where we struggled with 12 ounces of lead or more just to stay in touch with the bottom when the winds were against the tides. We have actually seen both cases on the same day a few times. While the Flounder fishing seems to be nowhere nearly as productive as it was for the better part of last summer it still remains pretty consistent. We have managed a decent number of keepers on just about every trip and we continue to see some quality fish in the mix. Just this past week we weighed in two more citation fish over seven and eight pounds and we have had countless fish in the three to five pound category. My biggest complaint about our fishing right now is I just can't say that we are getting the action that I think we should be seeing at this time of the year. Usually we are weeding through literally hundreds of short and measurable fish in August and we are just not consistently seeing that type of action right now. The weather continues to be our worst enemy but there are times that we question if there is really that many fish around at all, and if so where will they show up next. Just when we think it's really turning on we have another setback with the weather or the drift so it's been hard to tell just what's going on at times.
We have started to see a little more variety in our catch while Flounder fishing, just recently we are starting to see a few more Sea Bass a little more regularly and we are even keeping some of them. We have also seen plenty of small Croakers on the grounds at times, and even a few snapper sized Bluefish are starting to show up at along the ridges we are fishing. Water temperatures really haven't changed that much since my last report, with afternoon sun we may see surface water as warm as 72 or 73 degrees some days but for the most part that is about the warmest we will read, it seems to be stuck just over 70 degrees right now. The water clarity is still not up to snuff, mostly pea green colored water all over the fishing grounds in fact one day the water was so cloudy nearly 20 miles off the beach that it actually seemed much cleaner in the mouth of the Bay on our ride home. This is a very rare occurrence for this time of the year as far as I'm concerned.
The Delaware Bay continues to please the inshore bottom fishermen. Croakers are plentiful, there are lots of spike Trout around and there are still plenty of Kingfish and Spot biting from time to time. Capt. Mike reports another good week of catching the pan sized Croakers in fact he has called in the reinforcements for cleaning fish between his trips and has even complained that he was running out of bags to keep the fish in! These Croakers continue to provide plenty of bites and plenty of fish catching action for the Jr. anglers as well as those that want to try and fill up the buckets with fish in a short amount of time. The Croaks range anywhere from measurable up to about thirteen inches for the bigger ones. There are also signs that there are a few more bigger fish starting to show up a little more regularly. These fish will be around for several more weeks and are the perfect way to get the young ones started out fishing with the action that they can provide keeping the Jr. fishermen's interest.
Our Summer schedule continues at the Wharf with both Full and Half Day trips sailing seven days a week. I will be running the Full-Day trips departing at 7:00 a.m. and Flounder will continue to be our primary target along with Sea Bass or whatever else is willing to bite our hooks. Flounder fishing should be good for several more weeks and I also anticipate more and more of a variety in the catch as we progress. Half-Day trips sail at 8:00 a.m. and then again at 1:00 p.m. with evening trips sailing on Friday and Saturday Nights at 6:00 p.m. Half-Day trips will be targeting primarily Croakers. Capt. H will be running a 12-Hour trip for Sea Bass and Ling this Saturday and is also looking foreword to his next Deep Drop trip the following week. Reservations are required for the Long-Range trips but not for the Sea Bass trip this weekend as it is just an open boat.
If you would like anymore information about trips sailing out of the Wharf or you would like to book a private charter or reserve space on an upcoming special trip please give us a call at (302) 645-TUNA. Don't forget to check us out on facebook for more daily updates and more pictures from our most recent trips.
Until Next Week Happy Fishing!
Capt. Rick Yakimowicz
Thelma Dale IV