Annandale angler earns striper title

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Chuck Many of Annandale won the 40-hour Hi-Mar Fall Striper Tournament by running his Tyman from Highlands down to Shrewsbury Rocks for bass of 25.3 and 27.4 pounds.
The 52.7-pound total he and John Thomas of Belvidere put together within 15 minutes around 2 a.m. Saturday barely edged Capt. Brian Rice of Fair Haven who had 51.9 pounds on Jersey Devil. Yet, Rice's big bass of 29.3 pounds took the Calcutta -- and Kathie Krim added the Lady Angler prize with their second bass of 22.6 pounds. Rice fished around the bunker schools off Ortley Beach.

James Strobel of Scotch Plains took third on Jane Marie by fishing off Seaside Heights for bass of 26.2 and 22.5 pounds, totaling 48.7 pounds. Al Dudas of Cliffwood worked the back of Raritan Reach with Nauti Boy for stripers of 22.5 and 24.7 pounds and a fourth place 44.7-pound total. Fifth went to Frank Culligan of Rockaway, N.Y., who fished on his side with Daily Bread for bass of 20.9 and 21.1 pounds and a 42-pound total.
Boaters fishing bunker schools off Island Beach State Park and other areas both north and south of there did well with 20- to 30-pound stripers over the weekend. Capt. Russ Binns of Toms River limited his party Sunday and released many more off Ortley Beach, but when I joined Capt. Bud McArthur yesterday morning on his Splinter, there was nothing under the numerous bunker schools and we heard of only a few bass being boated in a large fleet. Surfcasters have been frustrated throughout the period, as bass haven't pushed those bunkers to the beach, but kayak anglers have been catching big stripers.
Sandy Hook Channel was another hot spot before the weekend. Lots of boats were working it successfully with eels Friday morning when Capt. Lou Grazioso quickly limited on Striper Mania from Highlands.
There was even more competition that afternoon when Ted Lygos of Mantoloking and Scott Cozart from Stockton were aboard to catch bass steadily despite a very fast drift. Most of those bass were shorts, but there were plenty of keepers mixed in. Grazioso was able to limit there again early Saturday morning before the boat traffic became unbearable. While those bass wanted eels, they were spitting up soft shell spider crabs.
Tim Doolan and friends from Bayonne made their first fall striper trip Saturday with Blind Squirrel and fished eels between Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, where Theresa Steidle caught five stripers up to a 25-pounder, and Barry DeVeau added three up to 15 pounds.
After some spotty canyon tuna fishing last week, warm waters have moved back into Hudson Canyon and big catches are being made once again.


At Atlantic Highlands, Capt. Tom Buban has switched his Atlantic Star to daily three-quarter-day bottom fishing from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Buban said weakfish appear to be gone from the bay, and striper fishing was tough in the weekend mob scene at Sandy Hook Channel. He fished Sandy Hook Reef yesterday and had good porgy action along with a few sea bass. One of two blackfish caught was a keeper.

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Capt. Rob Semkewyc limited his Sea Hunter with stripers Friday in Sandy Hook Channel and released many more bass. Jeff Kay of Freehold and Jack Bashford from Vauxhall caught more than 20 bass exceeding 28 inches. He said the traffic was "insane" there Saturday. After catching two stripers, he sneaked away and found more bass -- including a 30-pounder for Tom Watson from Kearny.
Capt. Jack Bevins of the Teal reports night striper fishing is paying off in some larger fish on worms and eels. Mark Bedford of Middletown boated a 26 1/2-pounder, and Ray Brink from Edison had a 24 1/2-pound striper.