Friday, May 7, 2010

What a way to Start a New Season!!

I have only been fishing a few times during lunch breaks at my favorite early season spots with only a couple hits to show for my efforts. Thomas told me earlier this week that he wanted to eat some bluefish so I told him that we would go fishing on Thursday night. So we go to our favorite early season bluefish hot spot and it was windy and cold. I did see one fish caught, but TJ was not going to try and stick it out. But, he really wanted fish to eat. I told him we could go try our favorite harbor because it would be calmer and warmer there.

When we arrived at the harbor there was a nice sized school of menhaden popping around on the surface so I brought a rod down and started throwing a 7" bone Hogy. Every few minutes the menhaden would stop dancing around on the surface and then get blasted by some bigger fish. I missed a bass (no tooth marks on the Hogy) and then a little later had a bluefish come and bite the bait just shy of the hook. So, I take the hook off and am getting ready to put on a new Hogy and I figure what the heck!! I cast out my Owner 7/0 hook, unweighted right into the middle of the school of bunker. I snag one and within a few seconds it gets hit, but I lose the fish really quick. I threw out the hook again and snag a bunker, but this time I decide to reel in and rehook. Well, on the way in I see the bunker about ten feet in front of the dock I am standing on and this big 0le bass comes up and inhales it. I was not expecting to see a fish this size yet this season so I am fishing with my 8' Tsunami Trophy, Okuma Epixor with 15 lb. Tuff-line braid. I just kept repeating over and over, "do not go under the docks." Well, she didn't, and after a long fight I got her into the dock. TJ took this great picture and then I went to put her back in the water. TJ says, "Dad, you always keep the first striper of the year and you said we were going to catch a fish to eat." I went on to explain to him that usually my first fish of the year is around 30" and this was much bigger. We talked for a little longer and after a lot of hemming and hawing I decided to harvest the fish (during this entire conversation with TJ I am venting the fish and she is not really coming to, I think the fight was rather long on my light tackle and she was spent).

Got her home, measured and weighed her. 39" and 22 lbs. When fileting her her stomach contained a partially digested whole bunker and two binker heads that had clearly been left over from bluefish.