HookI - sounds like you had a nice year. After having my time on the water extremely limited since my job moved me to Manhattan in 2012, and my boat being down nearly all of last year, 2016 was a good come back year for me.
A change in positions in early summer gave me the ability to get home at a decent hour some days (4PM), so I was able to make a bunch of short trips after work. My season definitely started slowly, because I didn't have full confidence in my repaired motor. By mid summer I was feeling good about the motor and started getting more active.
We had a few nice bass early on, along with lots of double-digit bluefish on bait and plugs. Then I got into fluke and had good results with some large flatties. I was thrilled to find a good population of weakfish - even though they were small - and I caught them regularly for a few weeks. All on jigs. Once tog season opened I invested a decent amount of time pursuing them and caught plenty, with a good number of fish in the 5 to 8 pound range. I also got a friend into it, and he managed to catch some nice toggies too.
Then the fall bass got going, and it was gooooooood
We had lots and lots of bass - almost all on 1/2 ounce jigs, with fish into the mid 20# range. Water clarity was fantastic, and we were treated to the sight of stripers chasing schools of bunker, or swimming up and slamming our jigs - awesome stuff, and I was thrilled that my sons got to see it.
We enjoyed some other nice moments too - we had a mola mola swim right next to the boat for a few minutes, several bald eagle encounters, fireworks nights, trips to the Blue Rock for lunch, surrounded by dolphins one morning - just great, memorable moments.
Early on this year, I decided to take it easy on the boat and stay in the bay. That's what I did (with one or two exceptions) and it was a great year. I also had some fun in the surf, with lots of bass up to the high teens, and some fluke.
I still have a few trips with friends, from the surf and from boats. Going for tog Friday, and have an offshore sea bass trip scheduled for 12/22. I can't wait.
I'm very happy to be a "former" charter captain