New Jersey's World Class Fishing - Not a World Away!
Less than a tank of gas and three hours or less away from the New York metro area and two hours from the Philadelphia metro area, anglers have some of the best saltwater deep-sea fishing in the world. No need for a passport, eight hours or more in an airplane and a large travel expense, fishermen and women find a huge variety of fish to catch plus a family oriented beach resort environment along the 130 miles of New Jersey's coast.
The state offers an amazing variety of fishing choices due to its strategic location. New Jersey is on the edge of tropical waters to its south as well as on the edge of the cold waters of the northeast. Due to that positioning, anglers can take advantage of fish native to both areas. Many anglers fish New Jersey waters in their own boats but there are substantial charter boat fleets in Highlands, Belmar, Point Pleasant, Point Pleasant Beach, Atlantic City, Barnegat Light, Beach Haven (www.BHCFA.com) and Cape May.
For fishermen who prefer to fish for world record fish, an inordinate amount of record fish have been caught in New Jersey's waters according to the International Game Fish Association, the keeper of Fishing World Records. New Jersey has winter Cod fishing like the old days that stretches into early summer in many years. Spring and Fall Striped Bass fishing is second to none. Summer finds inshore waters filled with Fluke, Bluefish, Croakers and Sea Bass that provide steady action with occasional surprises like Spanish Mackerel and Cobia. Small Mahi Mahi are found here in late summer. Mid range Bluefin Tuna and Sharks offer a chance to hook up with fish that can exceed 200 lbs. There have been Bluefin Tuna and Sharks caught off New Jersey that have weighed more than 1,000 pounds according to NJ's Division of Fish Wildlife's records.
Then New Jersey offers the main event. Since New Jersey waters are blessed with some of the best offshore structures in the world with our numerous canyons and the interaction of Gulf Stream Eddies, anything is possible. Grander Blue Marlin, fish that exceed 1,000 pounds, have been caught, tagged and released here. White Marlin fishing from June until October has been truly world class with some of the best Billfish sportfishing boats from all over the East Coast converging on the New Jersey coast during the last few years for the chance to get double digit hook ups on the fightingest fish that swims. Large Mahi Mahi and Wahoo are favorites for offshore fishermen.
Then there are the Tunas. New Jersey has five species of tuna available: Bluefin, Bigeye, Yellowfin, Blackfin, and True Albacore are all found in quantity and high quality in New Jersey waters. The state's offshore waters are also beginning to yield unusual catches of deep water bottom species. While there have always been Tilefish catches here, anglers are finding that New Jersey also offers fish that are generally known as tropical species such as Grouper and Snapper caught in water 240 feet deep or more.
New Jersey also has the luxury of a complex bay system along its coastline. These bays offer a broad opportunity for fishing smaller versions of fish species than are generally found in the Ocean. And there are a great number of inland lakes and river that provide unlimited fishing opportunities. Bay fishing and crabbing with children can be an interesting event. There are many boat rentals where small boats and outboard motors may be rented for the day. New Jersey offers world-class Bay fishing for Fluke, Weakfish, Black Drum, Fluke, Bluefish, Blowfish and Striped Bass all in water that is usually less than six feet deep.