Monday, July 27, 2009

Summertime sharkin'

For those of you that follow this blog regularly I appologize that I haven't written anything for a while. Truth is it's been a little while since I've had much succes to report... I did fish a couple of times recently, but I think the highlight of both trips was the breakfast we had either before or after fishing, lol... So there won't be any hero shots of local freshwater fish to share with you in this addition, ha ha.

However, since it is now late July and Marianne and I have a trip planned to Ocean City MD in a couple of weeks... I've been getting fired up about surf fishing, and I would like to share with you a little bit about beach shark fishing and include a few pics from summers past.

A lot of people like to shark fish, but most do it from a boat. The truth is however, unless you are going offshore for makos or thresers, you really don't need a boat to catch sharks along most of the Atlantic Coast. The majority of people don't realize it, but there are some BIG toothy critters out there actively prowling the edges of the surf all summer long.

When summer shark fishing from the beach, I generally fish Assateague Island, although the same sharks can be caught off Ocean City and Delaware beaches as well. Delmarva seems to have a pretty good run of sharks that tend to show up around late June and continue on through the end of September--typically peaking around August and early September, which coincides with the year's highest water temperatures. There are five species that make up the majority of the catches in the area. They are: Sandbars (aka Brown sharks), Duskies, Sand Tigers (aka Garbos), Spinner sharks, and Black Tips. Occasionally Atlantic Sharpnose are caught as well as varied other species, bonetheads, small hammerheads, etc... Garbos seem to fight the least out of the bunch, but they also seem to be the largest. While Sandbars, Duskies, Spinners, and Black tips tend to run a bit smaller, they make up for it with their drag screaming runs and blistering speed (especially the black tips and spinners). One of my favorite memories of summertime shark fishing was watching the sillouette of a large spinner leap into the midnight sky, summer-sault, and then crash back to the water, highlighted by the bright light of the full moon (and breaking my line in the process, lol).

Seriously...summer nights, sand, shorts, and a big chunk of fishmeat on a circlehook--in my book that equals some of the best fishing of the season. Add to it some time spent with good friends, a couple beers, a screaming drag, and a big shark jumping and snapping at the end of my line... it really doesn't get much better--on this earth anyway. Come on August! Come on Ocean City!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Muddy waters...

Fishing and free time has been a little bit limited the past few days, with the arrival of our beautiful new pup... but I was able to get out with my Dad for a couple hours on Monday morning. We decided to hit the Susquehanna, not realizing the affect recent rains had on the water clarity. We arrived to the river with high hopes, but were bummed out when we saw how muddy the water was.

Since we had already made the drive, there was nothing else to do but try our luck. I had gone with the intentions of breaking in my new drift rod, and floating some jigs and live minnows --steelhead style. Given the conditions, however, I figured I ought to opt for the jigging rod instead. Glad I did.It didn't take long for us to get into fish. We tried a variety of lures, but most of our bites came on chartreuse, gulp twisters--fished on a jighead. Due to the murky water, the fish needed something they could both see and smell easily. The gulp was just the ticket.

We both caught channel cats, and walleyes, and I added a couple smallmouth bass to the mix as well. Unfortunately, I only have a few pics to share as we were both too far apart to facilitate much picture taking. The highlight of the trip was a nice 20" walleye that my Dad caught. Thankfully, I do have a couple pictures of it. Enjoy, and thanks for reading!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Breaking in the yaks...

I'll keep this short... but I was able to get out for a little bit the past couple days. Yesterday my nephew Bailey and I did some paddling around and fishing for some largemouths. We found some, and even caught a few of them. Nothing big, but some purty little green bass. Oh, and we also saw a musky too... Can't wait to get back out after him. :)

Marianne and I went out for a couple hours this morning as well. Today was her first trip in her new kayak... and she did really well in it. In fact, she caught more bass than I did. I'm really enjoying fishing for these largemouths. It is a lot of fun. Pretty much all the fish we've been catching have been on soft plastic baits... either Yamamoto senkos or Zoom lizards. I love the way a largemouth will come up and blast a lizard dragged across the top.

I have three days off this coming weekend... but I'm not sure how much fishing I am gonna get done. We are going to be picking up a new member of our family tomorrow. Her name is Lucy, and she is a mini-goldendoodle. Once we become aquanted, I'll be introducing you to her very shortly. Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I took the plunge...

For years I have been toying with the idea of getting a fishing Kayak. I've shopped around, looked online, and drooled over many pictures, but I could never quite pull the trigger. This past week I finally took the plunge... and I bought TWO! I got such and awesome deal that I had to get one for Marianne also. :)

After purchasing the kayaks I was dieing to try them out as soon as possible. Luckily, I was able to get out on the water with my buddies Brad and Chad one day this past week. We did some paddling around and fishing at Pinchot Lake in York County. We didn't catch a lot, but were able to manage a few largemouth bass. I got two little baby bass and three other decent ones... 13 inches and up, with the biggest being about 16 or 17 inches long. I caught them all on senkos. I'll post a couple pics for you.

I generally fish from shore so there has been a little bit of a learning curve involved with the kayak fishing for me. Especially in the river. I'm in the process of learning to how deal with the current, and figuring out when and where it is safe to anchor. In fact, I'm thinking a drift sock will be a purchase I make in the near future, as I often feel I'm drifting to fast to thoroughly fish an area. Still, I love fishing from the yak! It is a great means for me to reach water I could have never fished before, while on foot. I can't wait to spend some serious time on it this summer, and hopefully hit some of the local lakes that I haven't fished for years. I think Marianne and I are planning to hit the river with our kayaks tomorrow, so hopefully I will have a succesful report and some pictures to share with you in the next couple of days.