TopwaterPete

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  1. I car top mine on a Jeep, not a pickup. blackdogfish hit the nail on the head with the 3 reasons I rig at the launch. If you're concerned about time, perhaps just get to the launch 20 mins earlier? Not trying to be a smartass, but I've always arrived 15-20 mins earlier than I would normally when taking out the yak. I hate hate hate hate hate being at the launch, looking out at the body of water, and saying "S**t, I should be fishing now, if only I wasn't rigging!"
  2. Under $100 to me isn't $99.99 like others have mentioned, no offense to anyone else. Shimano Clarus rods are real nice at about $80. Fenwick Eagle rods are about $60 Fenwick HMX - $80 If you find a St Croix Triumph in a 6'6 ML action that's $69.99, buy it, don't even consider anything else. That's the rod you're looking for! Even if the rod is regular price, spend the money. That's the rod; if you grab it and cast it, you'll know.
  3. Right so you're going on the Gambler out of Manasquan. I would 100% bring what the boat recommends in the conventional setup, but I would not under any circumstances leave the dock without a spinning rod. You will use it if you cast to mahi's, and that situation comes up plenty on party boat trips like that. Bring small jigs between 1 and 2oz (hogy epoxy jigs, deadly dicks), flourocarbon leader between 20-40lb, 2/0-5/0 octopus hooks or "live bait" style hooks, barrel swivels, and small egg sinkers and large split shot. Mahi's you can catch on the surface or 50ft down. Skippies, albies, and bonito can be caught either up on the surface or deeper while drifting bait, like the mahi's. If you have a heavy freshwater bass spinning setup, or an inshore fluke spinning setup, bring that over the big spinning reels you use for bluefish. You want to have fun catching these fish, and the light rod not only makes it fun, but way easier to cast the lures and small chunk baits needed for those fish. If I was buying a setup, a 3000 or 4000 size shimano paired with a 7' rod in the 10-17lb or 10-20lb class would be my pick. With a 24 man limit on that boat you'll have some room, so tangles shouldn't be the biggest problem.
  4. That will work then regarding the rod/reel. Definitely back your reel with mono and then put as much braid as you want.
  5. The "inshore exotics" typically encountered in Sept/Oct off the NJ coast are very fun to catch on spinning gear, and I've done it a million times. With that being said, they're only fishable if you're sight casting to structure like lobster pots, floating debris, busting fish, or sargassum weeds. If you get into that type of fishing, a spinning rod in the 4000-6000 range is perfect, packed with 20lb braid and a 20-30lb leader. You'll be casting to "chicken" dolphin, aka mahi's in the 3-6lb range, false albacore averaging 5-6 lbs, and bonito that could be smaller or around the 5lb range. If you get luck and run into a bigger mahi, say 10-20lbs, you'll have no problem whatsoever landing one with a 4k to 6k reel and the line mentioned above. In the fall you can also run into bluefin tuna, which can either be school size (20-40lbs), or bigger ones exceeding 100lbs. Running 20-30lb conventional rigs gives the boat the versatility to troll for tuna, mahi, bonitos, or whatever else is out there (the oddball spanish mackerel, etc). Trolling is not done with spinning gear. You may also bounce the bottom for cod on a wreck, which a 20-30lb conventional outfit is ideal for. Ultimately I would definitely recommend sticking with what the captain and boat says. They know the type of fishing you'll be doing. With that being said, ask the capt if you can bring an extra rod along in the event you can target fish on spinning gear.
  6. Good eye on the Southeast Teramar Spinning! I didn't even know they made the Teramars that strong, at least the ones with cork grips. You're correct on the TMS/C denominations. The BG 6500 is a very beefy reel for that rod, but you don't want to go under-gunned for tarpon and sharks. You may really want to look at the 5000 size BG. If you use 50lb braid, which is plenty strong, you can pack 350 yds of braid. That's more than enough for what you're doing. The reel is not only physically smaller than the 6500, but about 7 ounces less, which is a big, big difference. The 22lbs of drag it packs is more than enough to control a tarpon or shark. Now, if you're just tossing bait and waiting, it makes very little difference which one you buy. If you plan on tossing plugs for tarpon at any point, that 5000 BG is going to feel a lot better in your hands than the 6500. Whatever decision you make, tight lines!
  7. x4, like Daiwa J-Braid for example, is a better choice than their 8 strand for what you're doing. With that being said, if you were to use Sufix 832, that's suitable for beach tarpon and sharking. The 8 strand J braid is awesome stuff, just better suited for tossing lures in freshwater IMO. You mentioned you're buying a 8' Shimano Teramar with a Daiwa BG6500. I've never seen a Teramar in an 8' XH spinning version, and didn't see any on Shimano's site either. Are you putting a spinning reel on a conventional rod?
  8. Dan, I know it's a few weeks late but I would echo the fact that sea bass do eat pretty much everything in sight. I jig sea bass quite frequently, from the spring season here in NJ all the way to the winter offshore fishing. I would say that slender patterns do work best from two standpoints; one that sea bass do eat quite a few sandeels, and that those slim profile jigs should cut the water better and hold bottom better. I regularly jig sea bass on diamond jigs, large Hogy epoxy jigs, and slim butterfly style or slow pitch jigs, for example. Green, silver, and pink would get my nods. Gold too. A teaser would be appealing to me personally on any jig that's not butterfly/slow pitch style. Hope this helps.
  9. I'll fish a bucktail/gulp combo with a 4-5" mullet or jerk shad about a foot above the bucktail on a dropper loop and 3/0 hook. That or a live-lined snapper blue when they're in. I fish similar rigs on the ocean as you do.
  10. Diamond jigs are deadly effective on so many different fish. Next to a bucktail, I'd say its the most versatile lure out there. They are deadly on mackerel, tunas, bluefish, and even bottom fish like snapper and grouper. Diamond jigs are typically cast out and retrieved at a fast pace if fish are on the surface. You can drop them to the bottom if on a boat and either retrieve up to the boat, or jigged off the bottom. For the shur-strike lure you mentioned, casting them and retrieving them would be the ideal method, but it also depends on the fish you're targeting. For mackerel, cast the lure, let it sink for a 3-4 seconds, and turn the handle on your reel, fast. You want to move the lure quickly. Strikes are typically vicious!
  11. Sea robins have been real thick on the south shore for the last 5-6 years that I've paid attention to them. LIS is loaded too. I agree with everyone else here; sea robins are not bad eating at all, and we should definitely take a few to cull. It's not as jet white meat as fluke or sea bass, but is plenty good eating. Aside from the oriental nations, every Mediterranean country (Spain, France, Italy, Greece, etc) eat them a lot. Last I checked they all know how to cook pretty darn well! Big ones you can fillet, smaller ones can be filleted too but are good either grilled whole or used in soup, like a bouillabaisse. I have sight fished for them in LIS on flats with real light tackle and they are a blast. Sea robins are a damn nuisance while targeting fluke, but we should be happy that they're sea robins and not dogfish or skates that are in numbers like this. (no offense to the shark/ray family!).
  12. Amen to that!
  13. Yes, there are plenty of big sharks in our bays. Barnegat is a nursery for sharks, and there are plenty of brown sharks in Raritan bay as well. You'd be surprised the species of sharks that swim our bays well into October.
  14. Had this ship coast by SH two years ago as I was fluking. Very cool to see, on its way to NWS Earle.
  15. Spheros, Saragosa, Spinfisher VI, Slammer, all good options. For my money I'd go with the Saragosa. Such a well made reel; the 10000 size should do well for what you're looking to do. It'll hold 350yds of 50lb braid, and if you run PP Maxcuatro or Daiwa Samurai braid, even more. Super smooth drag and well made gears, bearings, etc. The Thunnus is a great reel but you won't need it for jigging. The baitrunner mode is OK for chunking, but is best for live-lining baitfish. Penn stuff is good, won't bash it. Similar to the Shimano. The Quantum Cabo is good too, but the 80 size is heavy, quite heavy. The Daiwa BG is good too, but I'd personally opt for a better quality reel for pelagics. It's arguably the best bang for your buck inshore reel, but I'd step the game up for pelagics. I personally run a 10k size Saragosa in NJ for BFT and YFT, jigging and popping. I do use a conventional for chunking/trolling.