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THIS WEEK’S “BEST BET”

Posted By Jim Hutchinson, Jr., October 28, 2019
THIS WEEK’S “BEST BET”
Anthony “Tony Maja” Arcabascio emailed The Fisherman to start the week, letting us know of at least a dozen 50-pound plus striped bass landing by anglers using Maja gear in the past two weeks, and while both spoons and mojos are being used now for big fish Anthony tells us the spoons are outfishing the mojos right now 12 to 1. “I’ve been so excited the past couple weeks, many of them were released,” he said of the striped bass, a good sign that a lot of the big bass are being released to breed and fight again by Jersey Shore fishermen.
Monmouth County off the Jersey Shore has been the place to be the past two weeks as big striped bass in the 30- to 50-pound range have been stacked up off the beaches. Now when we say “off the beaches” that’s pretty much been well off the beaches, with best action trolling along the three mile line or thereabouts. However, North Jersey field editor JB Kasper predicts this week that a little onshore wind could help change that around a bit. “The east winds from Sunday’s storm will more than likely keep the bass in close, so the outlook for this coming week is for another good week of fall bass fishing, barring any weather problems,” Kasper said, while adding a second headline from Monmouth County this week. “The number two story this past week has to be the influx of winter flounder into the rivers,” JB said, adding “Shark River in particular saw decent numbers of flatties move in through out the week.” The big stripers crossed the border over the weekend as a few monster bass were also reported on the troll off Ocean County as well with spoons and mojos doing the trick. “Fish have been caught up to 50 pounds keeping anglers on their toes,” said Central Jersey field editor Ashley Viola this week, reporting that bass are also showing up in the surf, with mostly schoolies out back on soft plastics. “Some bluefin are being seen about 5 miles out but seem to be finicky,” Ashley said, adding sea bass and blackfishing has been decent, but nothing too exciting. Keep in mind that the size of sea bass goes up a half inch on Friday in New Jersey, but the bag limit also increases by five fish. “If that’s not enough, the jetties from Atlantic City to Cape May are loaded with tog,” reported South Jersey field editor Anthony Califano, pointing to the jetty rocks in Atlantic City as especially hot for tautog right now for those dropping baited crab jigs. “If that’s still not enough action to keep you busy while you wait out all that northern action, you could head to one of the many wrecks and reefs and find fantastic sea bass fishing with some nice bonus porgies and triggerfish too,” Califano noted. Our Chesapeake Bay Report by Eric Burnley was left out of this week’s edition due to space issues, but the report is the The Susquehanna Flats continues to see lots of small striped bass with larger fish to the south. The folks at Tocherman’s said the Key Bridge is the key location for striped bass in the Patapsco River. Early morning will see a top-water bite then it’s jigging time along the channel edges or under diving birds. Around Annapolis, Angler’s Sport Shop told us larger striped bass seem to be centered above the Bay Bridge in the Chester River or at the mouth of the Magothy River. Here too, top-water will work in the pre-dawn hours then the best bet is to chase birds and jig or troll. Across at Kent Island, Chris Dollar at Kent Island Kayaks said the Chester River up to Queenstown has seen striped bass between 26 and 28 inches. Crab Alley Bay and the Severn River have also seen these larger fish. It is a fall pattern and trolling with Tsunami shads has been very productive. George at Tyler’s Tackle said trolling bucktails at Eastern Bay and the Choptank River produced striped bass, while over at Rod and Reel Dock the report was slower fishing for striped bass with trolling still the best bet.
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