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  #1  
Old 02-15-2005, 12:32 AM
dogfish dogfish is offline
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
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I, like all of you, enjoy striper fishing, perhaps to a fault. Striper fishing is more than just a past time to me. The whole endeavor is undertaken with great respect and even reverence for these fine fish. If you have read the works of Frank Daignault, David DiBenedetto or John Cole, you will understand how important striper fishing is to me and other surf fisherman. Unfortunately, this reverence and other qualities normally associated with striper fishing, are missing on board a certain NC charter boat.

I, with another guy, recently drove over 16 hours (both ways) to charter a boat from 7:00 a.m. ? 4:00 p.m. out of Oregon Inlet, NC. Shortly after being underway, we were told: (a) that the fish were located more than three miles offshore, (b) fishing beyond three miles from shore was legal as long as we released the fish we caught, and (c) we would start outside the three mile line and then as the day progressed, head inside to try to get some keeper fish. We were not thrilled with this news, but it was early in the morning, we wanted to catch some fish (keeping was secondary), and we were excited to have the opportunity to do so. The mate stowed away the trolling gear and broke out some light tackle spinning rods.

First we traveled south/east, stopped for a few moments, then turned around and traveled north/west (for what we were told was) thirty miles up the coast. We then went out several miles off shore and started fishing. After that, we kept a fast pace of moving from spot to spot, often long distances in between moves and often ignoring feeding fish.

It finally became evident that we were playing cat and mouse with the U.S. Coast Guard. After a time, the captain disclosed that the Coast Guard was in the area and was boarding boats. He claimed that he did not want to get boarded because it was a ?hassle? but that was all. We therefore had to keep moving.

Finally, the Captain told us that he was too nervous to stay out beyond the three mile line and that we had to head in. Apparently, being boarded was more than just a hassle. This was sometime around 11:30 a.m. According to the Captain, someone in the area had his number and was calling the Coast Guard. There were numerous other boats in the area. We therefore motored toward shore and then all the way back down the coast to the inlet.

After arriving just outside the inlet (where we started), the Captain advised us that the Coast Guard had been following us the full thirty miles down the coast, there were absolutely no fish inside of three miles, he would not travel beyond the three miles because of the Coast Guard, there was no point in fishing and we might as well call it a day. This was sometime around 1:00 in the afternoon. In other words, he wanted to give up. Needless to say this did not sit well with two surf fishermen who have spent many a night fishing in conditions which can best be characterized as hopeless and who had paid a considerable sum to go fishing.

When the Captain informed me of this information, I looked wistfully to the beach. There were several trucks with surf fishermen. They were fishing hard and having fun. They apparently had not been told that the nearest fish was over three miles away nor did they care.

It should be noted that for the short period of time we fished beyond the three mile line, it was beautiful. The water was calm and the fish were everywhere, in many cases feeding up on the surface. We used storm shads on light tackle. We practiced catch and release and caught many great fish. It was good fun, except for the mate?s instance on hooking fish and trying to hand me a rod to reel the fish in. I explained several times that the joy of fishing is in the catching, not just the reeling. He just did not get it.

Our trip to North Carolina thus ended prematurely, without any keepers, and with a sick feeling that we had been mislead. A few disclosures before driving to NC for our trip would have been helpful, such as:

1. The fish are all outside of three miles.
2. You will not be able to keep any fish.
3. We will try to fish outside of three miles, but if the Coast Guard is present we will spend most of your trip running from them and will terminate your trip early.
4. Striper are in great abundance so we view them as a third rate fish (based on the comments from the mate).

Of course, had these disclosures been made, we would not have booked the trip in the first place (especially number 3).

I can?t wait for spring. You will see me fishing the surf in New Jersey or from my kayak at night in the back bays. Come next February though, the one place you will not see me is on a NC charter boat.
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  #2  
Old 02-15-2005, 06:29 AM
merrillizer's Avatar
merrillizer merrillizer is offline
The Poacher Poacher - I poach poachers
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Hampton, NH Marshland
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Welcome to the board :) Sorry to hear about your unfortunate experience. I think you got tha right idea by stickin with those spots and methods you mentioned at the end of your post ;)

Take a trip to NH this June. I'll show ya some big "Dam Bassy's".



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Old 02-15-2005, 04:10 PM
dogfish dogfish is offline
 
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Thanks Jonny Bolt. NH is a great state. I have a buddy in Antrim. I get up there many times to hunt and freshwater fish. Never fished stiper in NH before. You may just see me there this June!
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  #4  
Old 02-15-2005, 04:52 PM
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Roccus Roccus is offline
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Location: Reading, Mass/Rings Island
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Your story is not the first that I have heard of sutch horrors,it's no fun to be put on the spot,If you make that trip in June,I'd be glad to give you a shot at some big-uns if Mr Bolt is busy at the time,I'm from the Merrimack River one door down.
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  #5  
Old 02-15-2005, 10:02 PM
Stripersteve Stripersteve is offline
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: looking for some new shorts....
Posts: 1,114
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hey Dogfish welcome to the site, come on up to NH and fish with us. Jonny may get skunked but we'll have a good time hell maybe we could get together with Roccus and have a little ole fishin partee 8)
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  #6  
Old 02-16-2005, 04:49 PM
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Roccus Roccus is offline
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Location: Reading, Mass/Rings Island
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Like I said...I'm just one door down to the south....
But ya gotta keep the critters with stripes to the north we dont alow no polecats in my boat!
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  #7  
Old 02-16-2005, 11:00 PM
Stripersteve Stripersteve is offline
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Join Date: May 2004
Location: looking for some new shorts....
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nah first timers out on Brandon's boat always seem to get skunked. One night last summer brandon and I were at war catchin em and here was poor Jonny a couple of feet away not catchin any
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  #8  
Old 02-17-2005, 02:09 PM
briggs briggs is offline
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 894
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Welcome to the site Dogfish. On your way up to N.H. you might want to stop by Rhode Island. I'll get ya into some big cows and then you could stow it in a cooler, take it up to NH with you, and pull it out secretly when those guys are getting skunked. hahahaha

Kidding of course.

Thats ashame about the charter trip man, If a charter is what you want, i have some very reputable names for you up here. always check around for reputations before you book a trip. All charters that i would hook ya up with are Rhode Island SaltWater Anglers Association members.

I think i would have Tied up the charter capt. and fished my butt off until i went and found the Coast Guard hahaha.

Gotta watch people like that, he might have had mexicans in the hull or something.

once again, Welcome.

:twisted: craig aka briggs :twisted:

aka surfcastermaster

8) MASTER OF HIS OWN DOMAIN 8)

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