New Jersey Fishing Report
This should come as no surprise but the fishing remains tough. It is February and the weather finally turned brutal.
Even when the weather cooperates, which has been rare, the few boats that are still sailing are having a trouble locating fish.
On the plus side, hardwater folks are loving the cold and the rest of us are a week closer to spring.
Rick Hebert at Tackle World in Rochelle Park said all the action he’s heard of is on the ice and in the rivers.
Ice anglers fishing Greenwood Lake, Lake Hopatcong, Monksville Reservoir and other lakes and ponds to the north are doing well. Rivers and streams that haven’t iced over are giving up trout.
Mike Sancetta, who works part time at Tackle World, fished the Musconetcong River late last week and caught two nice rainbows on garlic eggs.
Hebert said the store is receiving new inventory daily so he’s inviting everyone to come on in and get ready for spring.
Phil Sciortino Sr. at The Tackle Box in Hazlet said it’s been very quiet. He did, however, report that Phil Jr. saw a striper landed on a plug as he walked his dogs along the beach in northern Monmouth County earlier this week. The angler told him he’s been picking a few fish every now and then this winter.
Giglio’s Bait and Tackle in Sea Bright is on its winter schedule open on Saturday’s only from 8 a.m. to noon and by appointment. The shop is getting new inventory regularly so if you want to stock up on some favorites, give them a call.
Mike Gleason at Tak Waterman in Long Branch hasn’t heard of any bass on the beach there and added that even the freshwater fishing has gone quiet in the last week.
He did say the shop just received a new shipment of inshore and offshore reels by Shimano, Daiwa and Tsunami. Tak Waterman is open every day of the week except Tuesday.
Bob Matthews at Fisherman’s Den in Belmar said it has been pretty quiet around there as well. The Ocean Explorer is the only party boat currently sailing out of the marina and, when it is able to get out, Matthews said some nice tog are being caught. The Ocean Explorer sails throughout the winter for ling, cod and pollock.
The shop is getting new inventory daily and preparing for the winter flounder and striped bass seasons opening on March 1.
Capt. Pete Sykes of Parker Pete’s Sportfishing out of Belmar will be sailing for blackfish again on April 1 and is currently accepting reservations for spring striper trips.
Larry at the Reel Seat in Brielle said the shop has been very busy stocking new inventory and getting ready for the upcoming season. But as far as the fishing goes, he hasn’t heard of anything going on.
Kyle at Fishermen’s Supply in Point Pleasant Beach said it’s the same there with new stock coming in and nothing happening on the water.
Capt. Kenny Namowitz of the Mimi VI out of Point Pleasant Beach will be sailing for tog this weekend but that will be it until April 1. The fishing has been slow but the boat has a group of hardcore anglers that just don’t quit.
Capt. Matt Sosnowski of the Norma K III out of Point Pleasant Beach said they are done fishing for now and the boat will be heading to the yard in the next couple of days to get ready for spring.
John at Grumpy’s Bait and Tackle in Seaside Park said they just received a new shipment of ODM DNA rods in all sizes. They’ve also got new rods by Tsunami and Tica in stock. As far as fishing goes, it’s quiet as a church.
Capt. Dave Showell at Absecon Bay Sportsmen in Absecon said snow and ice have made it tough for the boats to get after the white perch in the local rivers. He’s hoping the weekend offers a window for folks to get out and he’s got grass shrimp and minnows for anyone anxious to give it a try.
Fishing Forecast for New Jersey
Options are limited. Ice fishing and targeting trout in the rivers and streams offer the best chance to hook something this weekend. Ocean fishing has been tough and just a few boats will be heading out this weekend, if the weather permits.
Now’s a good time to check the tackle box and surf bag to see what you need. Tackle shops are stocking new inventory every day ahead of spring. Have faith, it will arrive.