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Hardy2
December 13, 2006

Gone Fishin'


Looking Towards Spring

As our regular readers already know, I have always been incredibly enthusiastic about the start of fishing season. Just as spring is a new beginning, so is April 1 when flounder fishing officially spreads its welcome mat on our local waters. Since I am a creature of summer, winter seems endless and becomes an opportunity to cross off calendar days as I await the vernal equinox.

Long Island fishermen and women usually feel the same way this time of year, especially when our plethora of fish suddenly seem to vanish from their appropriate habitats. My calls to East End bait and tackle shops yield slim results as Christmas approaches and even cyberspace reports include mostly comments from anglers who are simply wishing for fish or wondering if the season is indeed officially over.

While I'm on the subject of fishing seasons, please let me apologize to any of our readers who may have misinterpreted what I had written at the end of last week's column. I had stated that the striped bass season closed December 15 although the DEC did not frown upon anglers taking a bass out of the water. I should have made it abundantly clear that ANY bass that just so happens to be reeled in after the 15th, should immediately be released back into the water. You are not allowed to keep any bass you catch after that date, regardless of how big it is. Sorry for any misunderstanding I might have caused.

Ken, owner and operator of Tight Lines in Sag Harbor, reported unbelievable surfcasting at Southampton beaches earlier in the week although there were no boat reports.

The best reports from the Noreast.com revealed that some success has continued at the extreme ends of our island, with little in between. One Montauk boater ended the bass season with fish to 25 pounds on live herring in the north Rips. Another log noted that Sunday was a strong fishing day aboard the Island Current in the western part of the Sound with tog to more than 10 pounds. The angler noted that white crabs worked better than greenies and all aboard enjoyed fish that ranged generally from 5 to 7 pounds. The photos are incredible!

Just to show you how classy some of our local sea captains are, be aware that this weekend's last trip for fish aboard the Celtic Quest with captains Desi and Neil produced few results. These men stayed on task for several hours before the seas began to rock and roll. Capt. Desi handed each angler a Celtic Quest gift card to return again in 2007. Capt. Neil had donated one of his Long Island Inshore series rods as a raffle for a lucky angler on that last trip of 2006 as well. The young female angler who was chosen to make the ticket selection actually picked her own number!

Next week's issue will bring you some great information about the New York National Boat Show in the city and will also be the last time I write this column in 2006.

Like I said, my thoughts will stay with spring.

Good Fishin' to all of you!

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