Here’s a classic wintertime fishing pattern in the ocean.
The Jamaica II party boat went offshore from North Jersey last weekend. Fishing was OK Saturday in OK conditions.
Captain Joe Bogan said they had a pick of ling with porgy and a few codfish. The cod were nice-size, with the heaviest in the 12-pound range. On Sunday, they caught some fish early but headed back early when conditions deteriorated.
They were also scheduled to sail Wednesday, but Bogan said Friday they called that one off.
Bogan schedules 14-hour trips out of Brielle on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Last weekend, they were fishing about 12 miles off, but sometimes they journey farther. Call 732-458-3188.
Dan Spitzer at Bucktails Outfitters in Mays Landing reported Friday that some of the fishing spots in the Great Egg Harbor River environs had a crust of ice just enough to hamper fishing.
He said it looks as though fishers might get a better opportunity to give it a try Sunday and Monday with a little better weather forecast. He said they have bloodworm and grass shrimp at Bucktails, prime baits for white perch and yellow perch.
Spitzer suggested fishers try the popular bulkhead at Mays Landing on the Great Egg Harbor River or the boat ramp on the Tuckahoe River.
He also reported largemouth bass and pickerel have been in Lake Lenape.
Here’s another hurtful report: a variety of snapper, including mutton, yellowtail and vermilion and king mackerel.
Yeah, in Florida.
The popular Starlight fleet that mostly operates out of Cape May County, is running the Starlight 101 out of Hillsboro Inlet Fishing Center in Pompano Beach. Andrew Cicchitti, the son of captain Jim Cicchitti, said Friday they are fishing mainly three reefs that are 10- to 15-minute rides “right outside” of Hillsboro Inlet.
The well-respected fishing family with boats based in Wildwood Crest and Cape May once had a party boat in Marathon in the Florida Keys for the winter. This is the first year they have operated from Hillsboro. They run four-hour trips beginning 8 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. daily and four nights a week at 7.
Advised it was snowing here in South Jersey, Andrew came back with “it’s raining (here) right now.”
Andrew is 30 and said he has been fishing all his life. His dad has been a fixture on the Cape May County fishing scene for 40-plus years.
A lot of offseason events are scheduled for the next few weeks, including Saturday’s Ocean City Intermediate School Fishing Club flea market fund-raiser from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the school gym 1801 Bay Ave.
Faculty adviser Nick Verducci has 80-plus vendor tables with new and used, saltwater and freshwater items for sale to provide funds for club activities.
The Southern Regional High School fishing show is Feb. 16 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Southern Regional Middle School cafeteria.
New and used fishing gear and services will be available for sale at vendor tables, and there will be seminars in the morning at 9, 9:45 and 10:30.
Proceeds will benefit the South Regional High School Fishing Club and provide scholarships to four-year club members. Admission will be $4 and free for youths under 12 when accompanied by an adult.
Jason Hoch is the faculty adviser. For more information, call 609-597-9481, ext. 2120.
The Salt Water Sportsman national seminar series will stop Feb. 9 at the Atlantic City Convention Center.
It will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. with a number of lecturers on a variety of fishing topics. The series is organized by George Poveromo. Dan Ponzio, captain of the Atlantic City party boat War Dance, is one of the speakers. The cost is $55.
* * *
Follow Shep at
* * *
Michael Shepherd is the retired sports editor of The Press. His column appears Saturdays in print and Mondays and Fridays online.