Josenhans FF ~ Summer Pattern Set

7 07 2011

Joel Davies with a mid-20's striper

Whew! This should finally get me caught-up with the fishing reports. I know that I have been throwing a lot at you of late, but I hope the fishing (and writing) has kept your interest. Each season seems to bring a summer pattern slightly different from the last and this year is no exception. While last summer we had more bluefish to keep us entertained (we did have them earlier) that has been replaced this year with some excellent flounder fishing.

Michael found the flounder still willing

On Wednesday, June 29 Michael Bievenour and Joel Davies joined me for a full-day trip out of Crisfield. The routine was established – shallow water rockfish early and then off to the flounder grounds. I think we accomplished both feats, just maybe in reverse order. Mike and Joel spent the morning catching mostly small rockfish over some eel grass beds, as there was not much tidal movement to speak of.  Since the striper fishing was slow to begin, we decided to try the flounder. Due to windy conditions and a couple of trips to the mid-bay area, it had been a week since we last tried for flounder and I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. Not long after stopping at my favorite spot we had the first flounder flopping at my feet. For the next couple of hours we had a steady pick of the tasty flatfish, the hook-ups coming just often enough to keep the guys senses on edge. As the wind dropped off and the tide changed we returned to a favorite rockfish hole. The fish were waiting for us. For the next hour or so, Mike and Joel battled stripers up to 25 inches casting plastic shads on 1/2 ounce jig-heads. Lots of fun on the feather-light G. Loomis spinning rods. It was a fitting end to a day with a somewhat slow start. I was always told it’s better to end the day on a high note and today I was fortunate. Good work guys!

David with a nice rock on topwater

Saturday, July 2 brought back Crisfield resident David Wilmoth, along with friends Ron Long and Jim Daniel. David had mentioned  more than once (good-naturedly, of course) that I was putting a lot of pressure on myself, what with all of the flounder photographs on my blog. He was right, of course. I knew one day it would come to and end – but today wasn’t the day. I’ll get to that in a minute. We started off with some early topwater rockfish action and before long we had six nice stripers boated, including a ten-pound fish caught by Ron. While the action was short-lived, the explosive strikes in shallow water made the early departure-time worthwhile.

Now to the real reason David booked this trip – flounder! David told me he has been drooling (well, maybe my word) over my photographs of limits of big flounder, one of his favorite fish. He had me under the gun today and I was hoping the fish wouldn’t disappoint. We got to the flounder grounds a bit earlier than maybe I usually would and I am glad that we did. Being a Saturday, we had to share the spot with others; but aside from a boat or two anchoring in our drift-lane, all went well. And boy were the flounder up to the task. We had steady action, sometimes with double hook-ups, of nice flounder from 17 to 23 inches. In just a couple of hours the guys were able to box their limit of the tasty flatfish. A 3/4 ounce chartreuse bucktail with a 4″ Berkley Gulp! Swimming Mullet was the hands-down favorite this day. It seems the flounder have returned in force! We ended the day drifting the lower end of Pocomoke Sound feeding leftover Gulp! to small croaker, but no one really cared. The flounder had once again made the day and I hope I never wake up from this dream!

Ron's first time jigging for flounder made him a believer

Daybreak on the Eastern Shore


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