I ran the 52′ Ocean Yacht “Saltitude” for the Viking Ocean Showdown this year, and here is how it went down.
Day 1 (July 17)
Day One I was running towards the Wilmington Canyon and ran over a very nice break in 38 fathoms on the way. The water went from 80-81.5 degrees and there was a slick line on the edge with scattered grass and some bait under it as well as a few sailor gulls and chick birds flying around. For me it is always scary targeting marlin this far inshore in July, but I went with my gut and stayed with it. Lines in was at 8:00 and by 10:30 we were 1/4 on white marlin and saw one more in the spread that didn’t eat. We also caught a 17 and an 18 pound mahi in the mix. We kept pounding out the area but we just couldn’t get another bite before lines up at 3:00.
Day 2 (July 18)
Given what I heard from Friday and also the SAT image shot from ROFFs, I decided to make the run to the eastern flats of the Wilmington Canyon. We pulled in at 8:10 in 60 fathoms and there were quite a few sailor gulls wheeling around this one particular area. We coasted over and WOW, there was a ton of bait. Balls of squid from the bottom to halfway up the water column. I also marked a few whites on the sounder so we hung out until lines in at 8:30. It didn’t take long to start getting the bites. We managed to get a hook into on around 10:00 and got a good release then hooked into a double shorty after. One of those two were Joey’s first white marlin ever, CONGRATS Joey!
Mid day action was slow, but the bait and fish kept popping up on the sounder. We never left a 3/4 mile radius all day and ended up 3/13 and had quite a few more lazy window shoppers in the spread. First time I ever saw white marlin cutting bait here in NJ in July. Hopefully this is shaping up to be an epic white marlin season.