5 Pound Sea Bass, 8 Pound Flounder and JUMBO Rockfish

By Scott Lenox

5 Pound Sea Bass, 8 Pound Flounder and JUMBO Rockfish

Happy New Year!!

The final fishing day of 2021 was an awesome one with calm winds and decent temperatures and lots of nice, big fish caught.  There was some fog to contend with in the bay and inshore ocean, but it was manageable and definitely didn’t impact the fishing.  Bottom fishing for the final day of sea bass was terrific and the big rockfish showed up just outside of the Ocean City inlet and several boats got to take advantage of it.

I was sitting on the couch today around 1 when I got a text message from my good friend and neighbor Curt Presnell with a couple of photos of big rockfish with the text, “Do you want us to come pick you up?”  Less then :45 minutes later I was trolling outside of Little Gull Shoal with Curt and his son Cody on their boat ForTuna hoping to get in on the action. The guys had caught 7 of 8 rockfish over 40″ before I showed up and then we added another 6 up to 47″.  It was awesome fun and a great way to close out 2021!  Thanks to Curt and Cody for the text and the terrific trip!

Captain Jeremy Blunt of the Wrecker and his daughter Piper got in on the rockfish action today with a couple of nice fish that were caught and released.

John and Grayson Wooldridge fished with Dan Haught and Captain Don Reynolds today and had some luck with the rockfish as well.  The crew caught and released seven big rockfish in 48 degree water.

A little further off the beach Captain Dan Mergott of the Tipsy Tiki had the crew of Jeremy Michalski, Jake Coleman and Doug Mergott aboard for some ocean bottom fishing on an offshore wreck.  The guys caught a limit of sea bass up to 3.5 pounds, some bluefish and some porgy before switching tactics to flounder.  That too was very successful with two doormats hitting the deck that weighed 7.5 and 8.5 pounds.

Captain Chris Mizurak of the Angler had a nice day of sea bass fishing today with some limits around the rail and some big fish ending up in coolers.  The largest of the day was a stud over 5 pounds.

Captain Monty Hawkins of the Morning Star was on track today with a great day of fishing for his anglers

Departed in darkest dark—before sun-up dark with  100% cloud cover & light fog – that sort sort of dark.

While reflecting ambient light from Ocean City made back-bay navigation simple, once clear the inlet it would be forty five minutes before a brief glimpse of color indicated sunup. 

Day didn’t get much brighter. 

After a long paddle Andy gave a shove to today’s reef blocks. Nice spot that one – over 3,000.. Been many a sea bass & fluke caught off those blocks – even limits – with many more smiles to come. 

Fishing was ‘drop & reel’ from beginning to end. Might be a blue, throwback cbass, dogfish, or keeper bass/scup; but you’d get bit. Doubles if you waited a moment.. 

By day’s end Bernie had everyone’s pool money pocketed & half my clients were limited on sea bass. 

Only had about 30 scup on the boat. I’ve been unable to repeat the great action we saw earlier. 

With sea bass closed my next ‘fish report’ (sign up for emails at morningstarfishing.com) will have news of different winter trips. Some toggin most likely; though I may yet try scup again – perhaps even a trip to the deep, and certainly some reef building. (Volunteer opportunities for reef building are announced via   ‘reef report’ emails. Sign up for those at ocreefs.org – it’s heavy work when we go!) 

Here’s Hope for a Happy New Year, 

Cheers All, 

Monty 

6-Year-old Copper Mead muscled in his first rockfish today with a little help from his dad Ryan.  The crew also caught and released four other fish over 40”.

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