Plenty of striped bass in the teens and shorts under the 28-inch minimum are splashing and chasing bait in the back waters and inside the inlets, while middleweight to heavyweight striped bass are taking their good ol’ time moving deeper into South Jersey.

Dave Showell’s remarkable back-water jaunts continue to rack them up.

The Absecon Bay Sportsman Center owner and operator of a guide service has had consecutive days of three keepers and slot fish, plus a number of undersized striper to keep his streak going.

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He said he tried a new stretch of water in the Great Bay-Absecon Bay area Friday and picked up one slot bonus tag bass and nine shorts under 28 inches.

On Thursday, it was three keepers and two slot fish, plus released bass.

We are starting to hear of a few more decent striper in the surf.

Gary Hill, of Brigantine, picked a 14-pound bass from the Brigantine jetty Wednesday evening and entered the Riptide Bait and Tackle fall striper derby. It is the early leader.

Linda Davoli, of Brigantine, moved into second place in the Riptide Derby and had the first entry for the Atlantic County/Atlantic City Surf Fishing Derby with a 121/2-pounder she caught Thursday.

Carl Pouls is in third place in the Riptide contest with a 12-pound bass he caught from his “office” — at the end of his dock in Brigantine.

LBI 48-pounder

The big news concerning big striped bass comes from the Long Beach Island Surf Fishing Classic. John Matt, of Surf City, hauled a 48-pound, 51.5-inch bass on his hometown beach Wednesday.

It is the leader by a wide margin in the contest that runs through Dec. 10.

The next heaviest bass is a still very decent 27.36 pounder caught by Patrick Pressuto, of Manahawkin.

The fleet launched for sea bass in awesome conditions that provided captains and crews with superior results.

Dan Rothman, of Northfield, caught sea bass and tautog Thursday and enjoyed a marine display from a vast school of little tunny, also known as false albacore or albies.

He said they looked spectacular in the water chasing bait right up to the boat. Dan said he was 4 miles off Great Egg Harbor Inlet on a fantastic weather day with beautiful seas.

Sea bass plentiful

Mike O’Neill, captain of the Stray Cat charter/open boat out of Seaview Harbor Marina in Great Egg Harbor Inlet, said he “loaded up” on sea bass Thursday and Friday.

Mike said he was farther offshore, 30 miles out Friday, and more inshore, 6 to 8 miles out, on Thursday. He said the fish are quality up to 4 pounds offshore with smaller fish inshore.

His crew also picked off triggerfish, mackerel and porgy.

Mike has a new boat ready to operate out of Seaview. The Adventure is a 50-foot Ocean, and he will be focused on six-pack charters for striped bass.

Asked who will run the new boat, he said, “I am.”

Then asked who will run the Stray Cat, he said, “I am.”

Call 609-391-9630 for details on the new setup.

John Nigro reported the Susan Hudson of the Starfish fleet headquartered in Sea Isle City had a similarly super day Thursday with most on board limiting out on sea bass plus porgy, triggerfish and bluefish. John said the sea bass were “nice size.”

Plan ahead

Cool things are planned for Veterans Day weekend Nov. 10-12.

Andy Grossman at Riptide is helping organize the Elks Lodge 2458 Fall Striper Classic from 12:01 Friday, Nov. 10, to 11 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 12.

It is a combined event for boat crews of four with a $60 entry fee or $30 for individual land-based fishers. Total weight of two fish takes first, second and third place.

Half of the prize money will benefit Elks programs. Call Grossman at 609-264-0440 or Drew Hemerich at 609-517-6332.

Irv Hurd set aside next Saturday as a Veterans Special half-price fee for veterans and civil servants on the Miss Avalon party boat. Irv will sail from Avalon Sportfishing Center at 8 a.m. for sea bass and tautog. Call 609-967-7455.

Showell has organized an ambitious Atlantic County No Football/Puerto Rico Benefit striped bass event for Nov 10-12.

Dave has interest from other countywide bait and tackle shops: Ray Scott’s Dock in Margate, Ship Shop in Ventnor, One-Stop in Atlantic City, Riptide and Bayside Bait and Tackle in Brigantine and Chestnut Neck Boat Yard in Port Republic.

The cost is $20, with half going to a Puerto Rico benefit fund.

Dave’s idea is to have fishers preregister at their local tackle shop and then weigh the fish there. He also suggests fishers call ahead to the weigh station before signing up.

Call Showell at 609-484-0409 or go to his Facebook page for more information and to sign up for a striper trip if he has any open days in the near future.

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Mike Shepherd is the retired sports editor of The Press.

His column appears in the Tuesday and Saturday print editions and online.

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Contact: 609-350-0388 ShepOnFishing@yahoo.com

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