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Everything posted by petespeak

  1. I've been surfcasting for the last month seeing skittish fish everyday: open beach, flats and rocks, also some river bank casting at various top of tide locations: 1)26 total bass landed between 18 and 32 inches. 2)location:3 bass open beach, 4 bass flats, 7 bass boulderfields and ledge, 12 river bass. Baits: Open beach-ghost darter mod with inline copper spinner in place of tail hook. Flats-casting egg and yellow teaser, Hopkins with red feathers. Rocks-all fish caught at sunset with 7" ghost Doc. River-9" ghost Sebile Magic Swimmer. ( Everybody tossing three inch paddle tails caught skunk. Makes no sense to go small right now: stripers are eating 12 inch baitfish). All fish over slot were caught right after sunset on incoming tide. Biggest fish hit Magic Swimmer in shallow water bordering drop off. Bait not allowed areas I fish yet. Bloodworms or fresh mackerel chunks are the usual go to.(skip frozen Macks if possible: freezer burned bait turns into fish butter when it melts) Live eels will be the only bait I'll use this year. Tips: suspend an eel from a bobber over "snag-city" boulder fields. Be ready for the flats exploding during spring cinder worm hatches around new June moon when water temp and sun-baked mudflats wake up for the summer. After the herring and shad runs, the bait fish shrink: Always use a teaser or a casting egg when sand eels and smaller forage is present. But regulations are all over the place fishing midcoast until July. Make sure you know where you can use more than one hook and bait. When and if they show up, Maine rangers are serious guys and have zero tolerance for infractions. Fish are on the move and after this storm clears we will know if the main body of migrating bass have arrived yet or are sitting on the 50 degree thermocline just south of Portland. I've seen years when the fish stay put offshore. Other seasons the main body of bass never move north of the Higgins Beach. But not this year I'l bet...I'm looking forward to a great season. The most active fish so far are fat 27-28 inchers. Soon the fish will arrive and spread out across the bays, estuaries and flats. That's when I switch over to Sluggos after dark and big topwater plugs at sunset. So what to do today? Hang out on the beach, near the mouth of a river, or find a soggy sedge bank at the first bend of a tidal creek, stick some bloodworms on a hook, then it's "bait and wait" until dark. When you get bored, cast every lure in your box...whatever it takes to get you to stick around until after the sun goes down. Then grit your teeth, pull on your wetsuit and get to work. 3am, perched on a semi-submerged rock, shivering solo in the moonlight, 50 degree air and water temps, windy, rain bullets stinging your face, slippery rocks, ripping currents, crashing waves tossing froth sky high: Why, you ask? If you need to ask that question, you won't understand the answer. I can't put it into words...it's just a feeling I get that makes me go there.
  2. Been my experience bad weather with wind either overpowers or amplifies the structure at good fishing spots. High water and big waves create new spots, especially on rocky shorelines and jetties. One place where I fish there is a hole out on Half Mile rock that only fills during full moon and higher tides, but with the right wind and waves, the structure is such that water rushes over the lip and fills a channel that sucks in crabs by the bushel: like sight fishing in a stone barrel 120 feet wide and 1O feet deep. Only guy I know who could fish it was a lobsterman who fished year round in his 16ft skiff off Bailey Island: That boat was an extension of his body: He'd wait for the right swell, goose the gas and ride the top over the lip...then he'd crush a crab under his boot and stick it on a circle hook ...had about 1 hr of good fishing before the hole flooded over and he'd motor out between sets of breaking waves. Point is: locations evolve as conditions change. But fish don't. They just know one thing: Find current and a place to hide behind. Throw your bait there. Works every time. Bad weather with big waves either completely eliminates your normal hot spots or amplifies them. Statistically, bad weather hot spots will only produce in bad weather. But that's where the fish will be, hiding behind that submerged boulder that you could stand on and fish from during normal tides and conditions. Bad weather dramatically reduces the amount of locations you can fish, but sometimes time every fish in the area is concentrated in these spots. This is good because it narrows your choices and focuses your efforts. And if it's raining, fish don't care.
  3. Sound advice here. I lived and fished on Bailey Island's rocky ledges for thirty years and caught more stripers just steps from my house and agree with everything you said. With the fast moving tides,structure and conditions change by the minute along the rocks and boulder strewn beaches where bass hunt. One minute the water depth is just right and spills white water over the top of a granite point where the bass are waiting for any easy metal. Ten minutes of rising tide will flatten that fishy white water: For example, some spots surrounding the Giant Stairs are only productive for twenty minutes a tide cycle, and that's only when the wind is blowing in from the north...some holes fill up with a swirling current of frothy brine that carries small forage, first attracting Macks and then, the stripers come in for the kill. Fishing can be great up here, but local knowledge in Maine is more important than any other place I fish for stripers between here and NJ. Beware: Mainers aren't big talkers to begin with, and the closer you get to the water the quieter things get. Can you hear the crickets? Nah, that's the local guys gleefully chirping amongst themselves while reeling in the monsters.
  4. Striper Swiper! Back in 1970 you only needed two lures: Blue and white Striper Swiper by Atom for bass and a 3 inch Hopkins for blues...never had a tackle bag until I stopped catching fish during the late 70'S striper drought and figured a hundred bucks of the latest and greatest striper killers would solve the trick. As fish catching diminished, my tackle bag grew into a ten pound black hole that sucks all my disposable income into dark space.
  5. I prefer to attach the swivel to my braid. I use a 24" 50lb mono leader with a duo clip on one end and bare tag end that I can easily tie to the braid with a quick clinch knot. To prepare my mainline I coat two feet of braid with rubber cement then double the line over and do it again to end with six inches of braid that has been folded four times to create a "tying" line that's 80 lb test. I prefer a Palomar knot but it's tricky to tie with sticky string, but the knots will never come undone because the line sticks to itself. If you damage your leader you easily replace it by snipping it off and retying with a simple four turn clinch knot which I can do in the dark much easier working with stiff mono than limp threads of braid. I'm willing to sacrifice using extra hardware for the convenience of tying knots with mono vs braid. If I break the line above the swivel, I'll attach a new 24" leader with a clip on one end to the swivel tied to the braid, using a polamar knot and keep going.
  6. Catching the world record striper will land you endorsement deals that historically have been very lucrative. It's not just about the "glory." Show me a guy who would prefer to let that fish go instead of cashing in and I'll show you a guy who makes a lot more money than me.
  7. I bought the 10'6" 1-4 oz on a whim after giving it several wiggles and liked how it felt...first entry level rod I purchased in years: fishes like a 500$ rod...outcasts my Century slingshot.
  8. I just come to this forum to push stupid people's buttons. Thanks for the entertainment...almost as good as watching the Three Stooges...haha.
  9. You are out of your league genius...I'm out.
  10. What a bunch of ****...afraid of a guy wearing a dress...don't you all have something more important to worry about? Fox News tells you gender benders are taking over the world and you believe them?
  11. Every online tackle store should require their new hires to buy something from Saltwater Edge to see how it's done. I call direct instead of pushing the online buy button just so I can deal with them personally. I actually enjoy giving them my money.
  12. I'm also a Jersey transplant: Early spring: Ocean County backbay, flats etc. I have found Maine is different in that holdover bass are not as prevalent. Our season gets a later start because we have to wait for the fish to migrate up here. Access to productive flats in Maine is hard to come by without a boat or kayak. Mid-may through early June I focus on river mouths on the outgoing when the migrating fish first arrive. They will then scatter throughout the area and require different tactics to catch according to location. Open beach, rock ledges, boulder fields, rivers, saltmarsh, flats: all these types of locations require a different approach that is similar wherever stripers swim. Open beach fishing in Maine is best when fish first arrive in June. Check flats near river mouths. If land bound, or wading the shallows long casts are required to reach productive areas: casting eggs and flies are your best friend and can bring you places that fly fishermen can't come close to reaching. Live eels, sluggos rule at night on rocky shoreline. The largest darters you can cast are bass killers in swift moving water washing over sand bars near river mouths. My rules of thumb for striper fishing in Maine: Metals and bright teasers by day, large topwater at sunset such as a 9 in. Doc( jumbo spook) for bigger fish , 4inch green Creek Chub popper for slots. Immediately after sunset I switch to bone gliders or Magic Swimmers to hit the middle depth column of water and as the light diminishes I go deeper with bucktails and black feathers and then slow retrieve 12 inch rigged black or bone Sluggos. Follow the fish around Casco Bay untill they start their southerly migration in late August. Then hit the open beaches and boulder fields near river mouths south of Portland and catch them as they steam out into the ocean and head south. I usually follow them all the way back to NJ.
  13. The Aldrich is a beautiful thing...checks all my boxes: Wharncliffe blade,(snap cuts) integral choil, and a nice full grip. My current favorite factory is the second gen of the James Keating Spyderco you have shown. The middle cuts in the handle are rounder and more comfortable in my hand. Spent several years training Silat with 3-5 inch blades: best fighting knife for me is the Tops Cut 4" with Karambit style finger ring. My favorite EDC however is a Harley Davidson branded Benchmade that switches back and forth from a 4" fixed blade to a rock solid push knife that locks into place with an axis lock situated mid handle. The handle on that Aldridge looks to be a perfect fit. I prefer gripping a blade when the back portion of the handle rounds out to fill the lower part of my grip where my fingers fold into my palm. Accidents search me out and "slippery when wet" blades have accounted for an ER trip or two. Nice collection. Tell me about the customs when you get a chance.
  14. Hey Joe: Just read this older comment of yours: once again we are thinking in the same direction. Great minds, etc. I have staunched the flow of my knife buying obsession years ago by concentrating on 3-4 inch fixed blade for EDC. I have most everything factory and several customs but the search goes on. Searching for the perfect grip for my larger hands: I like a generous palm swell and handle shape that fills the space entirely inside my closed fist for a no wiggle hold that stays secure when wet. Hard bill to fill when weight is a major consideration: try to keep out under 4 0oz. I also prefer high carbon blades that may require extra maintenance but can take an edge easily. Any ideas?
  15. I've been experimenting: Install a TA clip on every lure and leaving it there. I've been trying several ways to attach clip to mainline employing a flex-wire leader made with two loops on each end. The wire loop slips into the clip easy peasy. The top loop slips just as easily into split ring swivel tied to your braid. Would love to find a set of split ring pliers that were super easy to manipulate in the dark. Imagine if you could actually employ split ring connections on the fly in surf conditions? Until they invent better split ring pliers, I'm thinking about carrying a pocket full of wire ties and a pair of stainless nippers. Seriously: have used wire ties to attach mainline assist hooks to tuna plugs. Think about it: Fish eat sticks that look like lunch: an ugly wire tie or two? Not gonna matter. Would love to see lure makers come up with snap-on attachments built into the plug that accept an o ring or even better, a bead attachment system like a daisy chain...or lures that accept a universal hook that you tie to your leader...oh wait, jig heads and plastics do just that...hmm.
  16. I grew up in Lanoka Harbor at the dead end of a dirt road surrounded by saltmarsh on the shore of Barnegat Bay. Clammed in my front yard, spent all day as a kid pulling blowfish and crabs out of the lagoon. IBSP was a straight shot across the bay in my aluminum skiff( spent a good portion of my misspent youth dodging rangers in the outback, fishing my way through the flats and marshes). Caught my first striper in 1970 from a lifeboat when I was a lifeguard at IBSP. Bought my first surf rod(10' Lami that weighed a ton at the long-gone Jean and Arts( the 60's and 70's alternate to the Betty and Nicks surf snobs who strictly catered to their "pro staff"). Grumpy wasn't even grumpy yet. Purchased my first surfboard at Grogs on the same block where Grumpy's is today. I ate breakfast countless times at B&N's, lifeguarded at every beach from IBSP north to Seaside Heights, fishing from lifeboats chasing the birds all summer long. Grabbed my first "underage" beer at Bum Rogers when it was just a fishermen's dive, but cut my party teeth at Goodtime Charlie's, Seaside's infamous bucket of blood where the exchange of bodily fluids matched the blood on the floor and the tepid gusher of rusty PBR flowing through the taps. Stripers were so scarce entire seasons were skunk, but gator blues more than made up for the deficit. I moved to Bailey Island in Maine 30 years ago and caught more stripers from my back yard than all other places combined, but I love that stretch of Ocean County beach...gonna have my ashes shot out of a cannon over the dunes of Island Beach with Johnny Cash singing "Amazing Grace".
  17. We really need a tackle shop in Maine for us serious surf and wet rock-scramblers. Walmart and tourist shops and corporate stores like Dicks are filled with bargain rods and reels that just don't cut it for serious local surf guys. Icon tackle shops like Surfland and Grumpy's in New Jersey are in the know with experienced, friendly staff, resident custom rod builders and relationships with local plug makers and good free coffee next to the bait freezer. Hope you share my vision...give me a job and I'll help you out once you get going...seriously.
  18. I have just discovered these and plan to use them exclusively this spring for back bay applications. I'm the kind of fisherman who is forever searching for a "better mousetrap". The terminal tackle we use today is decades behind the engineering magic that creates our rods and reels...asrtonaunt's don't tie knots, so why should I?
  19. Weakfish + Fluke + White Perch=winner winner fish fry dinner.
  20. Both sides of Manasquan Inlet are perfect for your needs. Park and fish just a few paces from your car.
  21. I agree: Ugly stick inshore for beginners: durable, casts well enough, best ban /buck, better performance than any rod for the budget minded beginner. 7-7'6" for you, 6 footer for your kid. Phlueger's President line of reels at Dick's is a decent buy for beginners. I went this route myself with plans to upgrade when the need presented itself. So far still fishing my President trout reel and it catches fish. I do not think the fish can tell what reel you use, but judgmental type fisher folks might throw you some shade. Peer group pressure does not end on the playground...haha...and expensive fishing lures are meant to catch guys who chase shiny objects. My rule of thumb when buying anything: buy the best you can afford, but temper your decision based on how much you will use it and spend accordingly.
  22. I've owned or handled every mid to high end spinning reel and IMHO the best bang for 500 bucks is the VR75. This lightweight powerhouse can handle any fish you will catch on East Coast beaches and outback. Great for wade fishing the flats, inshore boat fishing, surf fishing for albies on a light weight whipping tipped rod, or jig for stripers in your kayak...sealing, great drag...and did I mention lightweight? Only 9 ounces and small change? This reel can handle all your fishing needs from the surf, jetty, boats, flats, tidal creeks...and swim fishing with a lightweight setup is a dream. Find a a lightweight, fast/moderate action, 8-9'6" rod rated in the neighborhood of 3/8oz to 2oz and you are good to go for just about anything you will encounter besides Russian submarines or sharks. It might take some getting used to for a traditionalist fisherman looking at a long rod with a tiny reel, but results are what counts...I started out with green coffee grinders and fiberglass broomsticks...50 years of progress took care of that...in my mind, the convenience of modern spinning gear outweighs the pleasure derived from fishing with old stuff just because it ain't broke yet.
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