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About CWitek

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    West Babylon, NY

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  1. Talk to your insurance agent; there may be a way to insure against damage but drop liability if the boat will remain unused and on land. If not, you may be able to drop the liability coverage to a lower level thannyou're paying now. The fuel tanik is going toi be an issue. Keep fuel in it, the fuel will go stale. Leave it empty, you run into condensation issues. Expect to deal with some water when you use the boat again.
  2. It evolves. While the possibility of catching a fish never completely falls off the list, most anglers change their goals over time. I know that I went through all of the phases, wanting to catch a lot of fish, big fish, chased line class records, chased tournament checks. You achieve those goals, and new ones arise. Teaching other people who are getting into the sport. Spending time with people you care about. Getting involved with the management process, so the next generation enjoys what you did. Especially on the ocean, there is always something new to learn. A few years ago, I started getting into wreck fishing, something that I ignored for decades. While it's not as exciting as bass, makos or tuna, it requires anchoring and other skills that you don't need to toss bucktails or drag lures at 8 knots. And it's something that you can do with friends during a long stretch of season, it puts meat in the freezer, etc. I think the point is that there really is no endgame. You can take the sport as far as you want to, learning new things as long as you're able to stand, or you can soak clams in the sunlight and enjoy that, if that's all that you want to do. Sometimes I'll just run a few dozen miles offshore and pull a few lures without any real goal in mind; just want to get out alone in a beautiful place to clear my head. If a mahi or tuna wants to commit suicide on that sort of day, it's that much better, but not particularly necessary.
  3. Agree with all of that. The only thing I disagreed with was the "shock absorber" comment; the ability to absorb impact is, in my view, the big advantage of the Bimini over the spider hitch. But for the sort of slow-striking fish you're talking about, the spider hitch is fine. I use it for striped bass and such all the time.
  4. I don't want to send the ECOs on a wild goose chase. So if I see short/over limit/out of season fish being taken, and it looks like the violator is settling in for a while, I'll call. Otherwise, it tends to be situations where I know someone is a chronic offender, and I can provide details of the boat, angler, where they usually fish, etc., I'll provide the information. Illegal sale, provide not only the seller, but the buyer. Only time I'll speak to a person directly is if it looks like a situation where they honestly don't know the rules, and might care if they did.
  5. Whether I want to eat bluefish depends a lot on what the bluefish was eating. Small bluefish caught in the bay early in the season, that has been feeding on small bait, I enjoy., Larger "racer" bluefish that are all head and no body, that come into my chum slick when I'm shark fishing 25 or 40 miles offshore can be very good. Big bluefish that I catch on offshore wrecks, or that attack the lures or baits that I'm trolling for tuna, and are feeding on sand eels, squid and similar forage end up in the fish box. Big bluefish that I catch in Long Island Sound that are as fat as slaughterhouse hogs from feeding all summer on bunker, that leave a little oiul slick on the surface if you're foolish enough to stick one with a gaff, I don't gaff at all because their meat tastes too much like cotton dipped in rancid cod liver oil. If the fish eat good-tasting bait, they'll taste good. If they eat bunker and such, they won't. Like others have said, thourogh bleeding and icing is needed. I also find that cooking them with ginger, mustard or tomato sauce to help cut through the oil is helpful. I make a bluefish marinara sajuce that is very good over pasta, and a teriyaki-glazed broiled bluefish fillet that I look forward to each year. As far as freezing goes, it's much better not to do it, but frozen can be OK for a while if the fillets are vacuum-packed.
  6. Always thought that false albacore was foul. But a couple of years ago, a friend gave me some that was just hours ougt of the water, was thoroughly bled and immediately iced, then sliced into thin sashimi and served with soy and a little ginger. It was very good. But he told me that if he had kept the fish overnight, it would have oxidized and been inedible. Freshness was the key.
  7. We still get them from time to time fishing out of Greenwich; fish tagged by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. In the old days, when Texas Instruments was tagging on the Hudson as part of its PCB remediation program, we used to catch a lot of Hudson-tagged fish there. Usually, as you mention, early in the season, perhaps through the thirds week of May, and never later than that. Those were ratty looking fish, with dark, reddish-brown backs, darker sides, and often fin rot. Once caught a bass with no tail fin at all, and most of the rest of its fins rotted off. I was using one of the old Tri-Fin Eel Worms, swimming it dead slow right on the bottom, and must have dragged it right past the bass's face. Thought I had a load of weed until I saw the fish; it was incapable of any real swimming at all.
  8. I'd disagree with that. The big difference between a spider hitch and a Bimini, and the reason that the Bimini is worth tying when chasing big fish, is that the Bimini actually does seem to stand up to sudden impact better than the he spider hitch does. And while the spider hitch works well with 20, it starts to get difficult once you go heavier than that. So while I'll use the spider hitch and Albright when I want to make a quick 100% line to leader connection inshore, I still think the Bimini is the better shock absorber, and use it exclusively offshore.
  9. Sorry to see it. American Angler had a very good editor; I worked with him on a couple of pieces for the "Conservation" section. One of the problems I see with print media--and one of the earlier posters touched on it--is that the stories lost most of their literary content a long time ago. When I was young, the writers told a story. I remember folks like George Heinold (salt water editor for Outdoor Life), Jason Lucas (fresh water editor for Sports Afield), Jack O'[Connor (shooting editor for Outdoor Life), etc., who caught you with their oipening line and educated through narrative that caught your imagination and made you want to participate in the same sort of things that you were reading about. I don't come from a hunting family, but Jack O'Connor's writing caught my imagination, and made me a hunter, a handloader, and a student of the rifle. I grew up in the western corner of Long Island Sound, but reading Jack Samson's book "Line Down" awakened me to the possibilities of fishing a small boat in blue water, something that I started to do shortly after law school; blue water is still where I most like to be. Frank Woolner and Hal Lymann at Salt Water Sportsman told the story of the striped bass in a way that drew you onto the beach. Al Reinfelder's prose was so moving that it not only taught me, but inspired me to try my own hand at writing. Charlie Waterman made Florida fly fishing come alive. In freshwater, you had Lee Wulff, S.R. Slaymaker II, A.J. McLean and a host of others with stories to tell. Today, that's all largely gone. Everyone tries to say it all in 1,200 words or less, and most of those words are written in support of their advertisers. Writers spend less time talking about the outdoor experience, and more time just pushing gear, spending less time with the look and feel of the water in order to metion every manufacturer, and often the model number, of every piece of equipment he used, even though as a practical matter, you can get a similar rod and reel to the one that he used from half a dozen different companies. In doing that, they were adopting a style that translated very well into on-line content, where everything is pared down to its essentials and writing stype is far less important than conveying data in the fewest possible words. In turning their back on writing color and quality, many magazines wrote their own obituaries.
  10. Been fishing the Bimini/offshore swivel knot combination since I started fishing my own boat offshore in the very early 1980s. Never had it fail. Not even once, on lines down to 12. When there were breaks, and there have been a few, they occurred elsewhere.
  11. You're welcome. Glad to do it. The kids being born today deserve to experience the same sort of fisheries we enjoyed when we were young.
  12. No public vote, although anyone who’s might want to write/email Michael Pentony at the Regional Office in Gloucester, or Chris Oliver at NMFS in Silver Spring, can do so.
  13. I sit on New York's Marine Resources Advisory Council, and on the ASMFC's Winter Flounder and Coastal Sharks advisory panels. Governor Cuomo has also included me on his list of three nominees for New York's obligatory seat on the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council. The folks at NMFS and the Department of Commerce are making that decision now, and should announce it in a couple of weeks. I'm not too optimistic, though, because the folks who oppose conservation are also going to oppose my nomination, and they are a loud voice right now.,
  14. Not cheap, but all things considered, less expensive than running most private boats. Party boats, and even charter boat trips, if you split the cost between 6 people, are relatively inexpensive compared to owning a boat, or at least a boat that you can safely run outside the inlet.
  15. Not really tough once you get the hang of it. What I'll often do is put the loop around a fixed item--a railing post if I'm at home, a cleat if I'm on the boat--and lean the rod the other way to keep tension on the standing line. A friend, who ties them very quickly, will put the loops around his knees, holds the standing line in his hand, and applies tension by spreading his legs. Both work. The real trick is in getting the angle on the tag end right, and getting the first few of the overwraps going back toward the loop to lay correctly. Once you have that, the rest is easy. Light line isn't a problem. We have been using 12, 20 and 30 pound trolling gear for years, and I've tied it in 2, 4 and 8-pound mono as well. You just need to practice a bit. Like anything, once you get the feel for the knot, it becomes routine., And it is a fixed loop. Once the knot is tied, you won't be able to slip it up and down the line.