Weekly Sportfishing Rundown - Father's Day Report
19 Jun 2015
Summer officially started this week, with the rising summer heat confirming this event. Although folks may complain about the heat, they are not complaining about the fishing, as the action continues to improve on most all fishing fronts.
Cobia are still the top target for most anglers. The bite is still good for both chummers and sight casters, with some really big fish hitting the scales. Cobia catches are coming from all over the lower Bay, with the best action occurring for chummers near Bluefish rock, the Inner Middle Grounds, and the Nine-foot shoals. Fresh cut bait such as bunker is out producing live bait lately for chummers. Site casters continue to chase fish near the Baltimore Channel, the 3rd and 4th islands of the CBBT, as well as off the ocean front, with eels the preferred bait for now.
Flounder action is mostly steady this week, although some days are better than others in Bay waters. Plenty of keepers are available in the usual flounder spots. Anglers dragging baits near the 1st and 3rd islands of the Bridge Tunnel are lucking into some decent fish this week. Flatfish are also coming from the Cell, Buoy 42, Back River Reef, and Oyster. The biggest fish are falling for live bait and jigs around the structure of the CBBT, where several trophy fish pushing to over and 10-pounds were boated over the last week.
The Spanish mackerel bite from Cape Henry to False Cape is still good lately, with boats filling their limits with nice fish ranging from 16 to 20-inches. Small gold and silver Clark spoons trolled at 6 to 8 knots with an inline sinker or small planer is enticing the best response. Taylor bluefish are also taking these lures in the same areas.
Spadefish action picked up some at the Chesapeake Light Tower and around the islands and the high rise area of the CBBT this week. Folks are still fishing hard for limits, with a few nice fish scattered in the mix. The sheepshead action continues to escalate as anglers pick big fish off the pilings of the CBBT this week. Grey triggerfish are lurking about in these same areas, creating a nuisance for anglers targeting other species.
Plenty of big red drum are still taking baits along the Eastern Shore shoals, especially on the Nine Foot Shoals, and off Fishermanís Island. Many reds are taking the fresh bait intended for cobia. Schooling reds near the CBBT can also provide great top water action right now.
Small and medium-sized croaker are hitting in the Thimble Shoals Channel, near the 1st island of the CBBT. Larger croaker pushing to around a pound are lurking around the James River Bridge, and the Monitor-Merrimac Bridge Tunnel. Medium-sized spot have also shown within Lynnhaven and Rudee Inlets.
Amberjack are enticing a few anglers to make the long run to the Southern Towers, where a few big fish will test your strength and skills.
Deep droppers are still going strong with catches of tilefish, wreckfish, grouper, and rosefish. Several citation blueline tilefish pushing up to 15-pounds and snowy grouper pushing to 50-pounds came from private boats trying their luck offshore this past week. Jumbo seabass are still a common bycatch in these areas.
The Virginia offshore season is off to a good start, but the good early yellowfin tuna run has scattered, with big gaffer dolphin taking up the slack. Boats are finding great catches of gaffer dolphin, with some weighing in at over 30-pounds. Billfish are arriving on the scene lately, with several reports of blue marlin hook-ups over the past weeks. Wahoo and mako sharks still a good bet, with some big wahoo pushing to over 75-pounds weighed in this week.