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RJ's Surf Fishing Log 2002
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Sept. 25:
I fished Montauk with charter client Mike Martino arriving Client Mike Martino 1st Montauk BassRJ on Rock in MontaukBreaking Bass
RJ with Montauk Basson the north side of the light at 4 p.m. and the fish were there waiting for us. We had fish on just about every cast with bass 25 to maybe 32 inches and maybe a few larger with a few stray bluefish of 5 pounds. This lasted a while as we had the two prime rocks just north of the light. All the boats in the area certainly were not helping, but they did not interfere all that much either. It was a tough decision to make, but I opted to give up our prime spots to move over to the south side of the light and into Turtle Cove as the tide was getting a little too high for action to sustain itself on the north side. The north side is usually the outgoing or beginning of the flood tide area to fish.

Our move to Turtle Cove and the bluffs to the west paid off  handsomely as my charter left one blitz period and after a few minutes was into another as he had a fish on his second cast. These fish were a little larger, 28 to 33 inches with a few larger and a few smaller and again only a few stray bluefish. Mike had never witnessed this kind of action before. Non-stop action of most of the 4-hour charter. Again on white pencil poppers with the larger fish on the outside edge of the school and reachable with a 3 or 4-ounce pencil popper. I also culled a few of the larger fish on Atom Jr.'s or large white metal lips.

Sept. 26:
I fished the stretch from East Atlantic Beach to Lido Beach this morning (9/26) starting around 7:00 a.m. I worked the jetties and found no bait or any signs of life. I worked in stretches and ended up at the last jetty to the east (Pacific Blvd.) and worked some of the open beach eastward and still no bait and no fish! Water was rough, looked great with plenty of foam, clear and just a touch of weeds and very fishable. just need some fish on the beach to make it a happy ending.

Sept. 27
I fished Montauk Friday (9/27) with Willie Young of the MSC and we had a very poor day of action. All we had was one bluefish of 2 pounds, witnessed another half dozen the same size later in the afternoon and the water was brown and weedy...but still fishable. No action on the east winds today that's for sure. I also handed out $100 cash to Bob (Buoy) Marvin of Central Islip when I spotted my bumper sticker on the back of his camper! Where is your bumper sticker?


Oct. 7:
I fished with charter client Art Sensenig from Maryland who made the trip to fish Vinny Sobral (left) & RJwith me on Monday (10/7) for a day at Montauk. We met at Freddy's B&T with Vinny Sobral (pic left) in Montauk with Art and myself hitting the beach at noon. I instructed Art on the basics of working pencil poppers and a Penn 704 that was a bailess (?) reel. Art and the rest of Maryland are fans of the "bait & 8" other words throw bait and 8 ounces of lead over the second outer bar for action. Well we finally got Art ready with a good pencil popper technique and he was getting accustomed to the new reel. We worked the beach to no avail as we watched the fly fishing boats continually harass fish away from the beach (more on this later on the message boards and forums) and we along with a crowd on the beach watched as the fish continually wanted to come to us but were being prevented. Around 3:30 the fish had had enough and came storming the beach anyway.

Art was amazed at the sight of giant schools of blues and bass working the water Breaking Bassinto a froth both offshore and finally at his feet. We worked the lighthouse area, Scott's and the Jones area as Art had trouble keeping his composure (LOL) and who could blame him. We ended up with Art catching keeper size bass and blues to 6 pounds under the Light using poppers and better action came on Atom Jr. metals lipped swimmers. The fish were thick and the waves were rolling up in front of the Light that were black with bass and blues chasing bait (mullet and some schools on spearing). We then went a little north back to Scott's and Jones' where we caught fish up till dark on pencils and Atom Jr.'s. We got off the beach at 7 p.m. and were greeted by winds that shifted to the north at 20 knots gusting to 25 and knew we got off at the right time. Changing into some dry clothes, needless to say Art was absolutely amazed at he saw and experienced, tired, sore and pretty wet after a spill or two he took and I am sure he slept like a baby...unless he was dreaming of fishing there again today.

Oct. 9:
I fished with charter client Rich Wentz of Lindenhurst today (10/9) and we stayed local to the area in Long Beach. We started in E. Atlantic Beach at 10:15 a.m. and walked from the Mohawk Ave. Jetty west to the Vernon St. jetty in Atlantic Beach. Water was clean, just a few small "ticks" of green seaweed and the water was choppy, foamy and green in what would have to be called optimum conditions with an east wind turned southeast/south and back to east when we were done at 2:15 p.m. I dropped a 15-pound bass in the wash using a very large metal lipped swimmer towards the western end of our trek and drilled a small schoolie using a 1-1/4-ounce white bucktail with small white pork rind strip. Both fish took their baits in the sandy, cloudy wash just inches off the beach in the east pockets of the jetty because of the east wind. saw some good bait movement here today as well.

Oct. 13:
I fished Atlantic Beach Sunday afternoon from 1:30 to 3:30 and found the surf smooth and glassy, although the swell was large and the waves would break out in front of the jetty and again mid way down the jetty for some wild surf! I managed a few bumps on the last of the incoming with a bucktail and white  pork rind and had a 20 inch bass on my 10th cast. I saw a few fish break out off the tip of the jetty and had a few more bumps and lost another fish. On the outgoing, the further into the tide we got the worse the weed got as it started to come back again and I left frustrated. I will be back there in the Monday morning for the incoming tide bite.

Oct. 14:
I fished Atlantic Beach on Vernon St. from 4 to 6 p.m. this afternoon (10/14). The water is fine, flat and calm and weed free!! The water was slightly off color but nothing major, and there should have been fish...but nothing happening.

I fished behind the office this morning (10/14) in E. Atlantic Beach. Water was still somewhat large but you could stay dry on the jetty. Winds were N at 10 to 15 when I started at 7:30 and were NW 20 when I left at 9 a.m. Water was weed free although brown, but not coffee colored. I used pencil poppers and metal lips, but the there is still a hard current and sweep at the jetty but not on the beach. I switched to 1-1/4-ounce bucktails and yellow split tail pork rind and had a keeper bass in the white water and foam just off the east side of the jetty. No other fish, but I did have a few bumps on the bucks. Also put my largest plug with the largest treble hooks as close to the surfers as I could. I was all alone on the 7 mile stretch of beach and of course not one, not two...but three surfers HAD to paddle the side of the jetty I was on and surf in front, at the tip and the sides of the one jetty I was standing on. No wonder surfers have bad reputations as individuals and airheads!

Oct. 15:
I fished Atlantic Beach Tuesday (10/15) afternoon from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. and had five (5) bass. I dropped a fish around 15 pounds when he came up on a blue metal lip swimmer and just got pricked by one of the hooks, but never took enough to get hooked and he never came back again. I used bucktails of 1 to 1-1/4 ounces with white or yellow/white pork rind and caught the five fish between 2:30 and 4:30 and then the bite shut down as if someone flipped the switch. Up to this point I was getting bumps and seeing free jumping bass and swirling bass in the wash as thy were uprooting sand fleas. I did see some bait being chased across the surface as well, but could not get any other takers.

I fished Atlantic Beach Tuesday (10/15) morning and stayed on one jetty from 6:15 to 8:30 a.m. and had six (6) bass. First one took a large metal lip in the dark and was around 15 to 18 pounds! I drilled a 26 incher shortly after that at false dawn on a small metal lip, the picked away at shorts to 24 inches on 1-ounce Key Largo white bucktails with the split yellow/white pork rind. Also had a few other bumps that if I caught would have upped my total to around 10 fish for the morning effort. Water is weed free and beautiful!

Oct. 16:
I fished Atlantic Beach Wednesday (10/16) morning in the 35 to 40 knot winds and a very light on and off drizzle from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. and caught one schoolie (22 inches) on a 2-ounce red/white lima bean bucktail with the yellow/white pork rind. I caught the lone fish on the west side of the jetty base and the east side was pretty riled up in 35 to 40 knot gusts. Water was still weed free but getting brown.

Oct. 17:
I fished Atlantic Beach Thursday (10/17) afternoon from 3 to 5 p.m. The water was a pea soup dark green, but not really brown per se. There was a touch of eel grass and a touch of green weed and was barely annoying and no where frustrating so it was very fishable. The ocean was calming as winds were SW at 10 to 12 and a light chop...although the waves were never ending and large, 4 to 6 footers pounding the jetty so expect to get wet! Just what I was looking for but no fish. Look out for tomorrow morning because they will be there!

Oct. 18:
I fished Atlantic Beach Friday (10/18) morning  from 6 to 8 a.m. The water was better in color than yesterday, but there was a touch of eel grass that was annoying and made bucktailing difficult, but minnows and metal lips were fine. No fish and I only saw one tiny schoolie caught by a fellow caster on a small shad bait. Lots of fishermen but no fish.

Oct. 25:
Winds: SE/NE 12 to 15...Seas: 1 to 3...Water: Clear, green and 61 degrees...
I fished Lido Beach Friday (10/25) afternoon and found some beautiful looking water, but it was starting to weed up a little. I don't know what made me do it, but I went to Jones Beach field 6 at 5 p.m. and had a great time speaking with some of the regulars, whether pluggers or chunker dunkers, we had a great conversation with Sal, Carl, Stevie and the rest of the Field 6 crew. I decided to park on the western end of the Field 6 lot and walk west a ways and found a 24 inch schoolie and a 32 inch keeper on a large Atom 40 metal lipped swimmer in the old style pink swirl. Both fish came between 6 and 6:15 p.m. I had nothing before or after and called it quits at 7 p.m. when it was dark my 48 year old eyes could not see my knot tying and I had no flashlight as I did not plan on staying as long as I did anyway. Still a good night as both fish took the big plug right at my feet.

Oct. 25:
I had a charter trip with
Peter Gulick Jr. Friday (10/25) morning. We started at 7:30 and worked the stones of Atlantic Beach till 10:30 a.m. We saw albacore and bonito and Pete had a good size striper take a swipe at his pencil popper right next to the jetty. We then raised a couple of small “rat” bass in the wash on 1-ounce metal lips. The water was flat, calm, clean and green like a swimming pool. Not the best for bass action but metal lips should have produced, but didn’t. After this storm the fish will be there.

Oct.  30:
Winds NE 15 to 20. Day after storm. Water: Muddy, shad everywhere. Seas 2 to 5.
I fished Atlantic Beach this afternoon. I was plugging with everything in my bag and not doing anything...anywhere. I ran into a friend who had some extra bunker and we proceeded to catch alligator blues from 7 to 14 pounds all afternoon.
I fished Atlantic Beach this morning (10/30) from  to 8 a.m. with a riled up ocean and tons of bait in the form of small white bait, ocean shad and herring jumping all around me and could not find a fish and I tried everything! Water was weed free and I expect things to happen this afternoon when I go back gfor the falling tide around 2:30 p.m.

Oct.  31:
Winds NW 5...Seas: Flat & calm...Water: 60 degrees...High Tide: 3:17 a.m. & 3:45 p.m.
I fished Atlantic Beach this afternoon (10/31) in gentle NW winds under 10 knots on a flat calm ocean and water temps around 60 degrees. I chunked off one of the jetties and had 15 bluefish in the 4 to 8-pound class between 3:30 and 6 p.m. The bite was furious and died just after dark. Shad everywhere! Water much cleaner and clear


Nov. 1:
was 54 degrees (Ambrose)..Winds NW/W 5 to 8 knots. High Tide 4:07 a.m. & 4:25 p.m.
I fished in Atlantic Beach using bunker chunks from 3:30 to 6:30 a.m. this morning (11/1). Only had one or two bluefish run off's and the rest of the time was spent with small cocktails/large snappers picking the bait apart like piranha. A beautiful clear night and sunrise.

was 54 degrees (Ambrose)..Winds W/NW 25 to 35 knots. High Tide 4:25 p.m.
I fished in Atlantic Beach this afternoon (11/1) from 3:30 to 5:15 p.m.. I caught three schoolie bass, all on the windward side in the wash using a 1-1/2-ounce white bucktail and yellow/white pork strip. Some weed moving in but was for the most part clean and green and not muddy...yet. Will have to wait and see what tomorrow brings.

Nov. 2
was 54 degrees (Ambrose)...Winds W/NW 18 to 24 knots. High Tide 5:15 a.m. Wind Chill: 28 degrees.
I fished in Atlantic Beach this morning (11/2) from 7 to 7:30 a.m.. I caught two schoolie bass of 18 to 20 inches on the windward side in the wash using a 1-ounce white bucktail and yellow/white pork strip. Water was clear like a swimming pool.

Nov. 3:
: 56 degrees (Ambrose)...Winds W/NW 15 to 20 knots. High Tide about 6 a.m. Wind Chill: 38 degrees.
I fished in Atlantic Beach through to Long Beach (east) from 7 to 10 a.m.  Flocks of birds signaled the arrival of lots of bait now moved out of the inlet. I saw some splashing and one or two fish caught although I was snot that lucky. By 10 a.m. there was not enough water on the beach to be successful so I called it a day. Water is gin clear (not good) and I would like to see some sand in the water to disguise the lures better. Lots and lots of bait now moving along the beach.

: 56 degrees (Ambrose) & GIN CLEAR!...Winds: W @ 10...dropping to 0 wind by 6 p.m.. High Tide about 6:23 p.m.
I fished Atlantic Beach from 3:30 to 5:44 p.m. Water is gin clear and lots of bait! Fish get too good a look at your lures so it is tough going. I did have a 15 pounder follow my 1-ounce metal lip and have staring contest with me at the edge of the jetty for 30 seconds. I raised two fish at dark on 1-ounce Cotton Cordell pencils poppers. Fish were breaking just behind the wash and would not even take a bucktail. I did see one fish caught on a  clam that was about 27 inches.

Nov. 4: Afternoon
: 57 degrees (Ambrose)...Winds SW 15 to 20 going W 10 kts. High Tide about 7:13
I fished in Atlantic Beach 3 to 4:30 p.m. Again on the same jetties where bait was present the day before...however no bait, no fish and gin clear water. I called it a day....still the worst surf season in a decade for me. Water is gin clear (not good) and I would like to see some sand in the water to disguise the lures better.

Nov. 5:
Water: 56 degrees (Ambrose) & GIN CLEAR!...Winds: E/SE @ 10 to 15 kts. High Tide: 8:08 a.m. & 8:29 p.m. I fished Tuesday (11/5) afternoon, 3 to 4:30 p.m., after spotting the sky was lit up with birds to the east of Long Beach with the binoculars from my porch. I jumped in the car and raced to the east of Long Beach. I walked down and followed the birds for a jetty or two before getting back into the car and running west (they were heading west the whole time). I would get a jetty or two west of them and walk to them, fish the flocks of birds and work them back to the car, then race to the west again and so forth till I followed them back al the way to my house. I saw no fish breaking under the birds and from the bluefish caught from the oats that day all the fish spit of spearing. I had no hits and no raised fish!! I suppose it could have been just plain bait (they have to win sometimes there would be no bait?) or shad chasing spearing. Either way...this is the worst Oct./Nov on the beach I have seen in 20 years!

Nov. 6:
: 55, Winds:E/NE20 knots, Water: Brown & Weedy, unfishable
I went down and tried to fish Wednesday (11/6) morning at 6:30 in the last third of the storm and the water from Long Beach to Atlantic Beach was very brown, dirty and full of green spinach weeds and unfishable.

Nov. 24:
: NW 25 dropping to 15 late in the day...Water: 54 degrees and clear green. Tide: 9:50 a.m. Lots of bird life...finally and plenty of bass along the beaches from Gilgo to the Rockaways as surfcasters got in on some great action. I saw the birds late this morning and rushed down to the beach only to find them making their way off into the deep with the hard NW winds and the dropping tide. However later this afternoon around 3 p.m. they hit the beach again with small bass of 1 to 3 pounds mixed with bluefish of the same size on just about every cast. They took 1-ounce Cotton Cordell pencil poppers, but responded much better to small tins like the Charlie Graves J-6 on which I was getting hit on every cast and hooking up most of the time. This lasted till about a half hour before sundown and started to slow then no hits once the sun was down as I fished dusk.

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