Sunday, July 12, 2009

Cape May Fishing Report July 11, 2009 – Duke of Fluke Special

I looked at the weather report for Saturday and realized we were finally getting a day with the wind from the South, which is good for heading to The Old Grounds. Then I realized that the Duke of Fluke tournament was scheduled for Saturday as well. I decided to put together a team of elite flounder fishermen, but ended up with Capt Randy, Dave M, Dave S, and yours truly.

Capt Randy, Dave M, and I made it over to Sterling Harbor in Wildwood to register for the tournament and attend the Captains meeting on Friday evening. We also entered the 5 biggest fish Calcutta and the biggest single fish Calcutta.

We met up on the docks at the Bree Zee Lee at 6:00 on Saturday morning. I drove up to Wildwood for the shotgun start at around 6:45 AM. They stopped registration for the event at 7:00 AM. They were approximately 150 boats and 15 kayaks registered for the event. The organizers smartly held off checking people in until 7:15, since the shot gun start was scheduled for 7:30. I wisely parked on the other side of Rio Grande Avenue heading back towards the parkway. Once it reached 7:30 they let us go, and people started running for the cars. I thought a couple of guys were going to get run over running across the road. I hopped in the mighty Nissan Versa and had the squirrels under the hood screaming as I headed for the GSP. There’s was a pack of 10-15 cars in the first group and we were all heading south on the GSP at about 90 MPH. The winner of the race was also rewarded by a State Trooper, luckily I wasn’t the winner. I ran over to the boat which Capt Randy had waiting at the fuel dock and we were off by 7:45 AM. I was already having fun and the day just started.

As we pulled out of the marina we could see a high speed parade of boats coming out of the ICW towards the Inlet. There was one guy who had a center console with three outboards on it and he impressively put the hammer down and was flying by the other boats. The inlet looked like a blender. As we broke the inlet Capt Randy punched up one of the waypoints for The Old Grounds. It took us about an hour to make it to the area.

We pulled in by some of the boats with a good reputation for catching fish. I immediately hooked up with a massive 3 inch sea robin. We continued to drift but most of the boats in the area were heading elsewhere, then I picked up the first keeper of the day, a 21 inch flatty.

We moved to another area and Capt Randy hooked up and landed a 23 incher. At another spot Dave M had another 21 inch keeper, and Dave S caught a 22 incher. If you’re keeping track we were up to 4 keepers, and we needed 5. I lost track of how many throw backs we caught, I personally must have had at least 10 throw backs. At one point Dave S hooked into what he thought was a big fish. He was using a high low rig and ended up with the only double header of the day, unfortunately he pulled in two rocks. The one was pretty cool it had a red plant growing out of it. We stuck it out until about 3:15 and then had to give up. The weigh in back at Sterling Harbor was from 4-5.

The wind had really picked up in the afternoon; I’m guessing it was blowing about 20 knots, luckily from the south so we had a following sea. Capt. Randy had the boat doing about 20 knots on the way in. We did find a few pots holes on the way back to port. The waves were mostly 4-6 footers, but we happened to run into a set that were about 8 footers. A few members of the crew got a refreshing blast of water. We made it back to the slip by 4:30 PM. In theory if we had enough fish to weigh in we could have made it up to the weigh in.

We cleaned the fish, and then ourselves and headed over to the awards party back at Sterling Harbor. There were hundreds of people there and you had to wait in line to get to the buffet table. There wasn’t enough room to sit so we sat on the grass across the street. We hung out there until a little after 8:00 and they still didn’t hand out the awards, so we left and headed over to the Harbor View.

I read on the BassBarn that the heaviest fish weighed in was over 11 pounds. I think it was 11.8 but I’m not sure. The guys who won for the heaviest 5 fish weren’t in the Calcutta, so they only won $1600. The guys that came in 2nd place for the heaviest 5 fish were in the Calcutta and ended up taking home about $16000.

All in all it was a fun day and I think everyone had a good time.


Post a Comment

<< Home