Monday, September 26, 2011

Chesapeake bay bridge tunnel sheepshead and spadefish

First off, sorry about the late post. Its been a couple hectic weeks.

Tuesday the 13th I got a chance to get out  to the CBBT after work. I finished the bathroom and shower tile work around 1pm and took off to Chick's beach.
It's also a steam shower
Recessed niches I built from scratch

Sunset LED setting on a kohler showerhead
Shower head on top, speakers on the left and right, control panel, and 3 water jets.

I got on the water around 2:30 and took off to my favorite spot for sheepshead. I almost immediately caught a small striper on a fiddler crab, which was a new one for me...I guess those things eat pretty much anything.

Within 30 minutes I found just what I was looking for...SHEEPSHEAD! 

After a great fight with several runs that felt like I was fighting a pile-driver, I horsed it in with my release reel and Shimano trevala rod. It measured in at 25"! My 3rd citation sheepshead for the year! I love these fish! As soon as I lowered it in the water it took off with a hard kick and splashed me in the face. No need to revive that one! Did I mention I love catching sheepshead?

 I fished the area for another 30 minutes or so with no luck so I decided to switch over to the spadefish. It was a little more work than usual finding them but I managed to catch three 12"-14" spades. I have a hard time deciding what I like to catch more...spadefish or sheepshead. I'm glad I'm in an area I can catch both in the same day!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

My wifes biggest fish so far

My pregnant wife and I went fishing for carp in Gloucester a few days after I caught them. We used to same bait as before (oatmeal) an started catching them about 2 hours before sunset. Alice hooked 2 but lost one right at the boat. I caught 3 carp and a few bass while waiting for the carp. Good times!

She was a little grossed out because the carp pooped on her leg.

Variety of fish (including a slam) at the HRBT

I met up with Rob Choi at the HRBT around 10pm to look for some schoolie striper and whatever else wanted to bite (we are a little behind on Kayak Wars). The night started off kinda slow with scattered striper in the light line. As I got closer to the island, I found some schools of some nice trout. I never caught any of the bigger ones I saw, but there were some in the 20" range at least. My first fish of the night was a small grey trout that I caught on my newly created "Woody" lure.
That blood blister is gone...I just checked.
"There's a trout on my boot!"

After messing around with Woody for entirely too long (heh heh), I decided to fish for real. I put on a super fluke and hooked a couple nice striper and more bluefish than I care to talk about (any number of bluefish is too many to talk about). It was really a sub par night to say the least, so at about 1:30-2am Rob and I decided to head in.

On the way back, Rob was bouncing the bottom with a gulp swimming mullet and caught a couple small flounder. I am a horrible flounder fisherman, but I figured sure, why not. Within a few casts I hooked flounder, a sea bass, and an oyster toad. It was better than catching bluefish, I guess.

After just a few minutes, I hooked something nice on a piling right next to the first boat channel. I had no idea what it was at first, but it was strong. I felt head shakes so I knew it wasn't a ray (thankfully). After a nice fight in, on, and around the pilings, I finally got it to open water and landed it. I caught my first puppy drum for the year! I almost forgot how tough they are!

25" puppy drum

After 30 minutes or so, Rob decided to call it quits, but I just couldn't quit quite yet. I continued to fish close to shore and hooked a striper, several small specks, some flounder, and a few small grey trout.

This was all during slack tide, so it was a pleasant surprise. I really didn't want to hang around til the tide started moving again, but it was so close... I kept fishing for flounder, catching a few up to 17.4999" here and there, til the tide started rolling. Once the tide was coming in at full force, the striper came to the light line as always. I wanted to catch as many as I could before I had to leave so I could rack up some Kayak Wars points. They were hitting really well so I decided to use my new lure to see what I could get. It was getting hard to fish because of the wind, but I still managed to catch about a dozen striper up to 27".

It was a good night with a good variety. I caught a bunch of bluefish, several speckled trout, 3-4 grey trout, an oyster toad, a nice puppy drum, 15ish striper, a small sea bass, 10 or so flounder, and a seagull! I was feeling great but it was getting late. I had to be at work in 2 hours and I was an hour away from home so at 5:30am I called it quits. Not a bad night for a weekday!

Less sleep = more fish!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Gloriously ugly fish

Monday night I got a couple hours to fish before dark so I decided to fish Beaverdam Reservoir for some topwater bass... Evidently they are slackers because they were still closed from the weak little hurricane we had. My next idea was to fish Ware Point for some speckled trout... Fail again. Had to be home by 9pm. Lastly I decided to fish for carp in a local pond. I knew they were there because I saw them while struggling to catch bass last week.

I had never fished for carp before, but I always wanted to. I had a good idea of how to catch them, but knowing how to and actually doing it is sometimes difficult.  I had about 2.5 hours to fish, but nothing was ready. Within 15 minutes, I called Rob Choi, got more info, mixed my carp bait (quick oats mixed with juice from canned corn and a touch of sugar), threw it in a plastic bag, then loaded my kayak.

I was at the water within 15 minutes of leaving my house but I didn't have a whole lot of daylight left. I quickly tied on a carp "rig" which consisted of a swivel to a 20lb test floro leader to a 1/0 bait hook...that's it. On my other rod I put on a Zoom Super Fluke. I never even leave the house without a rod with a fluke on it so naturally I had to have at least one rod set up with one.

I paddled nearly as hard as I could so I had more time to fish before dark. I realized I wasn't paddling at 100% so I decided to turn it up a notch and "CRACK!" I broke my paddle at the junction. It split about 6" down the shaft so I grabbed my handy pack of zip ties from my crate and cinched them down so my paddle could make it for the rest of the day without splitting the rest of the way.

After the mile paddle, I made it to the spot and immediately noticed some tailing carp. Before I started chunking my concoction, I tossed the super fluke and hooked a few bass and managed to catch two small ones. After soaking my bait for about 10-15 minutes with no luck, I cast in another spot where I had just spread a can of corn. It only took a couple minutes til I had my line slowly roll off the spool. I waited for about 3-5 seconds and snatched up on it just to see my hook fly out of the water. I baited up again and tossed it right back in the same spot. This time I waited a little longer and that seemed to do the trick! I hooked my first ever carp! It was a great fight that lasted about 5-6 mins through grass, sticks, and small trees. I finally got it up to the boat and realized... How do I grab this thing? I never heard that they had anything sharp on them but at the same time, I didn't want to go reaching in somewhere I'm not familiar with. I decided to grab the leader and just give it the ol' leg scoop. That did the trick! I measured my first carp at 31".

Unfortunately I forgot my camera and had to use my phone

For the next 30-45 minutes, I caught 3 more carp all between 30" and 31". At one point, I had one carp hooked on my 6'6" med act spinning rod and another hooked on a 6' med light action rod. It was a fun battle trying to keep one away from the other, untangling them from my anchor, landing them, and snapping pictures.

I was running out of time, but the fish were still biting. I decided to do the right thing and leave the fish biting... It was painful, but I managed. I got home with plenty of time left.