NOTHING! The first full-0n skunk of 2011 was had last night. That was not to say a good time wasn’t had by all. Lot’s of laughs around the fire and remembering brown sharks in the wash in Seaside, big stripers for Good Friday in Princes Bay, and blues…well everywhere. Just not in the back last night.

Much to our surprise, Raritan Bay failed to produce a single hit let alone any fish. Not for want of trying mind you. We had 5 lines in the water with 3 seasoned anglers (read: out of our minds) and two novices (read: normal). We had lines in at 7:30 PM and put a toe-tag on it 12:30 PM.

The crew hit the sand a little before low tide in a spot that had been producing sizable blues and small bass for the past 4 weeks with great hopes. While I had my doubts the same class of blues were still hanging around (salinity is down from my last read), I did expect the bass, rats to schoolies, to be present. And yet, nothing.

The Nor’Easter did rewrite the bars a more than a bit, but I doubt that had anything to do with it. Lack of large bait is more the culprit. Word at the bait shop is that bunker pods are way south of SI and it is doubtful they’ll be moving north. That doesn’t bode well for back bay fishing, but all isn’t lost.

Sunday morning saw the bay crystal clear with sand eels schooling very close. Last night, the water dirtied a bit, but very large shoals of small bait could be seen in the moonlight. We witnessed more than one large school right on the surface during the first stages of incoming. Problem was, there was nothing underneath them. It may take a bit for the bigger bass to find their way, but I have confidence that it isn’t over for Staten Island yet.

As for other spots and news…Bunker is in very short supply around the island. Frozen was all that was available yesterday, but word has it that the weekend will see fresh in and around. Sandy Hook did see some larger bass Monday, so boats and EZ-pass-holders could get ’em if they tried.

On the freshwater scene, it looked like standing-room only at Acme late yesterday afternoon. With the cold shot, the lakes and ponds turned over and may have put the largies on the bite. A major problem will be pressure now that we’ve lost Wolfe’s Pond. Previously overlooked ponds, like Acme, are getting a lot of attention now and that may not make fishing them easy. For my money, I’m boiling some dough, getting a can of corn, and looking for carp. With winter on the way, these WWF-sized goldfish will put a bend in the rod and a smile on your face.

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