I know this one is late, but I didn't have much time after this trip prior to heading out for my Penns Creek trip so here it is.
Long Island Sound. Captain Ernie likes to get out before the sun comes up and this usually works in our favor.
We set out for the short 10 minute ride to Race Rock in clear and calm conditions and had lines in by 5:15am and the first fish just minutes after. We started out using parachute jigs tipped with a pork strip on a wire rod. Basically the Captain's job is put the boat over fish and you snap the rod to give the jig action and wham.....Fish on.... well, it is supposed to be that easy but much of this depends on the tide, bait and the fish's willingness to cooperate. We worked are way along the rock picking up some fish, a keeper here and there and plenty of shorts. The race is New York waters and their fishing regulation allow for 1 fish over 40" and 1 fish over 28" for a total of two fish per person. It's always nice to get keepers in the boat, but we have to work a little harder for the 40+ inch fish.
About an hour into the fishing we started to see the birds working over some bait, which turned out to be sand eels, and the bass picking away at these bait balls so away went the wire rods and out came the spinning gear. If I could only fish for stripers one way it would be on light tackle gear and I'd throw all the big stuff out. It didn't take long for the guys to hook up on the spinning rods and the excitement really rises. Everyone is running around like little boys at Christmas time. It wasn't fast and furious by any means but it was fun fishing the mini blitz. Capt would position the boat and we'd make some casts and then the fish would move a bit and we would repeat the dance. This dance goes well when all the other boats play well and for the most part they did. Turns out the fish were chasing sand eels and ofcourse we had NOTHING in the boat that matched. You got to be kidding me, all this gear and nothing to match the hatch. Oh well, you can count on one thing for certain...We had sand eel rigs ready the next day.
We ended the Saturday Trip with 6 keeper bass, 2 keeper fluke (both caught by me - My personal best at 26"), some skate, sea robin and a dead crab and were back at the dock by 1:30pm to clean fish, clean up and start the hour plus drive home. The day isn't over until we get all the gear reorganized, take some showers, eat some dinner and a few drinks and then in bed by 9pm to start the whole thing over again on Sunday.
After playing with the bass for a few hours and having 6 keepers in the boat it was off to do some fluking. We hit the same spot as Saturday but after a few drifts of nothing we decided to take the 30 minute boat ride and run across the pond to another NY spot and it was good thing we did. The first drift yielded a keeper fluke at 27". Raymond almost yanked it clean out of the water without a net. We worked the area over and caught more shorts and ended up with 3 more NY keepers. We also landed a couple of sea bass, one blue fish and a sand shark. Nothing like a mixed bag to make the day fun. We fished until about 1:30pm and headed back to the marina. We had to stop to watch a seal trying to eat a skate and then another stop to check the captains lobster pots. Back at the dock it's repeat the process of unload the boat, cleaning it down and cleaning the fish and ofcourse some pictures. Day two yielded 6 keeper bass, one blue fish, one keeper sea bass and 4 keeper fluke. We had a great 2 days of fishing with plenty of laughs, some surprises and enough fish to enjoy for dinner.
Here are some additional pictures from the weekend.