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About TopwaterPete

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    Bergen County, NJ

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  1. Good observation! I think the cold water may keep them around for another 2 weeks or so, but since they are migrating fish, they could move on to greener pastures up north. The only reason they may stick around longer is because the temps are right, and they'll have other bait to eat, like crabs, sand fleas, spearing, etc that we have in the summer months. By the new moon in June though, it'll be goodbye stripers and hello summer resident fish. Let's see what the full moon next week does too...
  2. Just tied on a 48oz tilefishing sinker to the rod, loaded it, and the 15lb braid did not touch the blank. Close, but did not touch. I have a Shimano Cruxis baitcaster paired with it, so it's a low profile reel. I've caught up to 7lb fluke on that rod and can tell you there are no issues with lifting larger fish, and I don't ever recall feeling the line touch the blank. I fish the rod in the ocean as well as the bay, and in the ocean can fish 3-4oz BT's without issues. So if you're looking for a bay rod, it'll do great. IMO it's the best bang for your buck inshore rod out there.
  3. I have a 701H that I've had for over a decade and I believe the line may touch the blank if completely loaded up. Let me check and get back to you. I did not cut the tip on mine like Skinner did. I had the rod before he was doing Youtube vids haha.
  4. I have 5/0's on my SP's and they still catch fish. The 4/0's would work too. The 3/0's look small IMO.
  5. Out front MoCo 6pm to 11pm for the incoming. Foggy as can be, but the water clarity was great. Very little to show for it; 2 cocktail blues. No bait visible, but then again you couldn't see 100 yards
  6. You may want to up your choice to a MH if you intend to throw lures in the 3/4 to 1oz range on that rod. A medium can do a lot, but IMO a MH is just a little more versatile. That MH is in no way as stiff, heavy, or big as your 9' Tica. Between 7 and 7'6 there isn't a huge difference; either is OK. The St Croix Avid Inshore are sweet rods, and a 4000 Stradic would pair real well on it. The 5000 will be too big on a 7' M action rod, in my humble opinion. Jumping to an 8' Avid Inshore really changes the weight of the setup; the rod and reel would feel more like a surf rod than an inshore setup. Personally, I own two 7' MH spinning rods, one a Cousins and one an old Ugly Stik Custom Inshore Graphite, and both get used on the south shore and NJ quite frequently for exactly what you're doing. They're rated in the 10-17lb test range, and are light graphite rods with enough backbone to toss a small size SP minnow, 1oz popper, or 1oz BT for fluke, stripers, weakies, and blues. I have a Stradic 4000 paired on mine with 15lb Power Pro Super Slick 8. If I was buying something new, that Avid Inshore would be very high on my list of rods to buy. Hope this helps.
  7. So I'll share a personal story which hopefully makes you feel better about this. I spearfish in addition to the inshore/offshore fishing I do. It was 2014 and I was freediving in the backcountry off Big Pine Key in the FL Keys. I was with 3 other friends, so I was not diving alone. In the tropics, you never ever carry a stringer. You're inviting disaster. So, procedure is you shoot a fish, you swim to the boat, offload the fish, and jump back in. I just shot a nice hogfish and jumped back in the water after offloading the fish. I just got done reloading my speargun, kicked off with my fins, and kicked something with my right fin heel. It felt like kicking someone in the thigh; dense and solid. I thought it was my buddy, who had also just offloaded a fish as well, so I turned to say sorry. When I turned, there was a 7-8ft lemon shark turning away from me, diving for the bottom again. I ripped my fin off to make sure I wasn't bleeding, and quickly realized I was not bit. My friend, who was near the stern of the boat, saw the whole thing. I was reloading my gun and the shark came right behind me. When I kicked off, I somehow, by the grace of God, kicked the shark right in the nose, which caused it to dive away from me. I jumped in the boat with my friend who saw the incident and called my other two buddies back to the boat, since we weren't sticking around an area with a far too curious shark. I calmed down, realized that stuff like this can happen, and that there was nothing I could do about it. We moved about 3-4 miles from that spot to another area, and on my next dive, shot back to back keeper red grouper. It was the best 10 mins of spearfishing in my life on that grouper dive. I've spearfished 50x since that day and never had another problem with a shark. I understood even at that time, fresh off a near death incident, that stuff can happen, and you have to accept it. Moral of the story is, sharks are out there. Skishing and spearfishing will increase your odds of being bit, because you're in their home. The odds of being attacked are still super super super slim. Be smart about it and you'll significantly decrease your odds of being a victim. You can't let it prevent you from doing what you love. I would not worry about it if I were you. Keep doing what you love and fish the extra couple hours!
  8. Braid is not really more complicated than monofilament. For a 4000 BG you could go between 20 and 30lb braided line. You'll get a lot of opinions on braid, but generally speaking, most folks will fish Power Pro, Power Pro Super Slick 8, Sufix 832, or Daiwa J braid 4 strand. Berkley makes good braid, as do other brands. I'll generalize that there are 2 categories of braid; "smooth casting 8 strand braid" and "regular". The difference is that the "smooth casting" stuff has more woven lines, so it's a bit flatter and smoother. Downside is that it is not as abrasion resistant. Plus is that it does cast and handle a bit nicer. The "regular" stuff always has worked, always will work, and will cast just fine in 90% of the fishing scenarios you'll encounter. Think of it as "tougher" braided line vs the smooth casting stuff. If you're going to be around rocks a lot, I would recommend regular Power Pro or Sufix 832. If it's a mix of sand and rocks, you could try Power Pro Super Slick 8. I like the Super Slick 8 a lot, but I'm in NJ where sand is king. I haven't had issues with the Super Slick 8 around rocks fishing the south shore of LI or in the LI sound, but some guys don't like it. As for the braid, the only thing you have to do with braided line is to add monofilament backing to your reel. This is for 2 reasons. First, because the smooth braid can slip on a polished metal spool, and the line can dig into itself and your drag may not work right. Second, you'll see that with the super thin diameter of the line, a 4000 Daiwa BG can hold miles of line, which you don't need to pay for haha. The line is very thin, so there's a little learning curve when you cast. Just nice and easy when you cast; if you try whipping it out there and have wet fingers or hands not used to the thin braid, you may slice your finger. Don't be afraid of this though; you'll get used to it real quick. Any local fishing shop can spool the reel for you. If not, fill the spool say 1/4 to 1/3 full of mono and splice the braid with an Alberto or FG knot. Youtube the knots if you're DIY. Make sure to keep excellent tension on the line. These two knots work great for tying leaders onto your braid. If not, use a barrel swivel. Just watch your fishing rod's guides if using a swivel.
  9. The Nasci is not big enough for that rod, and it's got a graphite frame; not my first choice ever. The BG is a great choice. The Battle II and Clash are decent reels, but the Daiwa is better for the $. The rod is a great rod for anyone from a beginner to a seasoned angler. I have 3 of them in various lengths.
  10. The Saragosa is a good budget minded tuna spinning reel. Paired with the right line, it works fine for medium sized BFT, YFT, and sharks. Do not spool it with more than 50lb braided line. Thinner stuff like Power Pro Maxcuatro will be your friend. It'll hold about 375 yds of 50lb braid; north of 400yds with thin stuff. The gear ratio is fine as is the drag strength.
  11. Good move on the Torium; I love mine. 50lb PP is what I have on mine; its plenty strong, and thinner is better for deeper water. Good thing you felt the Tallus before you bought it; everyone has their preferences in a fishing pole haha
  12. I run Gamakatsu 1/0 siwash hooks on my albie/spanish mackerel jigs up to the 1oz range. Depending on the 2oz jigs you could bump it up in size. For bottom bouncing, VMC siwash hooks may be the way to go. Strong, effective, and relatively inexpensive so it doesn't hurt as bad if you snag or dull the hook and need to replace it. You could run a Mustad O Shaughnessy 3407 DT on the bottom jig, but those hooks have smallish eyes and may not be easy to run a split ring through.
  13. I own the Tallus 7' Hvy and have fished it for many years. It's primarily used for offshore sea bass trips out of NJ, but has also haddock fished in Mass several times. There are times admittedly it's a tad heavy for things, but I bought it because it could drop as much weight as I want without worry. It's dropped 24oz before and had no issues. I have it paired with a Shimano Torium 20 PG. Prior to the Torium it was paired with a Penn 225 GLD until it finally bit the dust. If I were you, the MH would be my choice. I has the backbone you're going to want in order to drop 16-20oz lead. As for the reels, I think that TLD 25, Fathom 25, Saltist 40, and GT330 will feel really big/clunky on that rod. The Tekota 600 will be a nice pairing IMO. With that being said, I'm a fan of mid-range gear ratios for deeper water. I'm in my 30's, in good shape, etc, but a 6:1 ratio is not the most fun in 200-300ft. If you have a prior generation Tekota 600, those were in the mid 4's ratio from what I recall, which to me is perfect.
  14. I'm personally not against keeping your legal catch every day. I will keep what I'm allowed while fluking, sea bassing, etc on a boat or surf. I would just hope people aren't eating fish 4-5x times a week. Sounds healthy on paper until you look at the consumption advisories...
  15. You will need different rods for the boat vs the surf. You can however take one reel, like a 5000 size for example, and fish the surf or on a boat. Just take it off one rod and put it on the other. Did this for a few years as I was a young lad and newer to fishing. Like others above said, a 9' rod would be ideal for the surf in NJ. 10' is good too. There are rods that can throw bait and lures, but they're not perfect. Meaning, they will need to be stiffer in order to toss heavy sinkers + bait, and that's not ideal for lure fishing. They'll cast lures, but you will sacrifice distance.