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All this week we have seen big changes in Ocean City. Most college students have left town to pursue their studies. Families have finished up their vacations and headed back home to get their children ready for their first day back to school. The Town of Ocean City has changed back to the town I enjoy the most, a town more laid back and quiet, a town made for fishermen.

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After this holiday weekend the second season will officially start, and in most fishermen's minds and hearts this is when the fishing really starts to turn up a notch. We tend to see bigger Flounder this time of year. Trout seem to start to show up on the jetty's and flats. The togs return to their inshore haunts along with Sheepshead and Triggerfish. And with the shorter days and cooler nights the larger Stripers start to head back down the coast from their summer grounds up north. In addition most offshore charter Captains will tell you this is the best time of the year to chase after large Yellowfin Tuna. So don't put those rod and reels away yet, we still have lots of exciting fishing left here in Ocean City.

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This past week the Flounder fishing slowed down some, with dirty water being the main culprit. Most fishermen that had luck are starting to use bigger baits, such as live Spot, Mullet, and Peanut Bunker. The hot spots seem to be the deep part of the east channel and the Ocean City Inlet. We also heard of some good bites on the south side of the South Jetty.

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We weighed in several nice Flounder this week, and the first group to come in was a three-generation family. Earl Simons (Grandfather), Jay Simons (Father), and Michael Simons (Son). They had a great day of Flounder fishing with two nice flatties to weigh in. Jay weighed in a 21 ½" 4 lb. 2oz. Flounder, but Jay was out done by his son Michael. His Flounder weighed in at 24 ½" 4 lb. 3oz. This was Michael's first Flounder, so he was very happy with his catch! The next weigh in we had came from Ocean City local Bob Gummer. Bob's a regular here at the shop, Bob is one of those guys that fishes every day. So if you ever see him out there fishing you know you're in the right area for landing the big one. But this day Bob could only come up with a 17" 2 lb. And a 15 ½" 1 lb. 6 oz. Pair of Flounder. Still, not bad for a few hours fishing. The very next day Bob called me on the phone and expounded how his buddy Eric Knox of Ocean City caught these two monsters standing right beside him. He told me they would be down later to weigh them in. Well, a few hours later they showed up and when Bob said monsters he wasn't kidding. I laid my eyes on the biggest flounder I've seen this year. Eric's biggest weighed in at 28" 7 lb. 11 oz. The other was 24" 5 lbs. Both were caught on a fresh mullet, at the 4th street bulk head.

Moving onto the Striper fishing, we saw some more nice size fish this week mostly from the RT 50 Bridge. First one in was Ocean City local, Bill Leinemann with a nice 33" 11 lb. 5oz. Striper he caught off the RT 50 Bridge. Bill caught the fish on a bunker colored Storm Lure. On the same day only a few hours later, Christopher Vonneida Sr. Of Millmont, Pa. Came by the shop to weigh in another Striper from the RT 50 Bridge. Christopher's fish measured 37 ½" and weighed 17 lbs. It also was caught on a Storm Lure. But a few days later we saw the biggest Striper of the week. It was caught by Mike Klinedinst of Center Valley, Pa. His Striper measured 42" and weighed 20 lb. 8 oz. It was caught on the North Jetty on a live Eel. I personally had several Striper charters this week, we landed lots of Stripers but most fish were between 19 and 24 inches. Its amazing how hard these smaller fish fight, we were using live Spot and drifting the tips of the North and South Jetty's. Make sure to fish the last four hours of the incoming tide, and have plenty of bait.

The wreck fishing out from Ocean City seems to be improving lately. We've had lots of reports from anglers who been catching lots of larger Flounder along with nice size Seabass. The best rigs to use are either buck tails tipped with squid and minnows, or a 3 to 4 oz. Egg sinker with a fluorocarbon leader with a squid and minnow combo. We did weigh in a nice Seabass this week caught by young Marcos Moradel of Wheaton, Md. Marcos and his father spent the day together fishing on the party boat the "Angler". Marcos's fish measured 19" and weighed 3 lb. 2 oz. The bait used was squid. The wreck fishing should improve the next few weeks as the temps cool off. Some of my best Seabass trips have been in the months of September and October.

Moving onto the Offshore Fishing, the Yellow Fin Tuna fishing has been improving. We had a report come in from Capt. Dan Stauffer with the charter boat "Fin Chaser" it reads; Took the Roger Brill crew from Philly down to the Lumpy Bottom for a day of Yellow Fin Tuna trolling. From 7:30 to 11:30 the bite was steady, the fish were taking Green Squid spreader bars early, and naked Ballyhoo's later. Total count was 7 Yellow Fin Tuna up to 55 lbs. One Blue Fin Tuna at 50 lbs. And one Dolphin. Broke off three more at the boat and must have had another dozen bites that never came tight.

Another offshore trip this week on the charter boat "Over Board" with Capt. Dustin Lorah and Mate Mike Reynolds, took John Heywang of Teaneck, NJ. Fishing. John had his hands full with lots of action. They boated 12 Dolphin, 1 Wahoo, and 1 Yellow Fin Tuna all were reeled in by John. Capt Lorah was trolling Ballyhoo in the 20 to 24 fathoms west of the Sausages. One other hot spot to mention is Massey's Canyon, the Yellow Fin bite has been steady there all week.

Here at Skip's, we offer both inshore and offshore charters. This fall we will be adding another boat to our inshore Striper charters which will give us twice the booking availability. The Capt./Guide for that boat will be local, Capt. J.W. Powell , J.W. and I have fished together for a few years now and he is one of the best in the Ocean City area. Give us a call at the Tackle Shop at 410-289-8555 or my cell at 410-430-5436. The prime months of October and November are filling up fast so don't wait, you don't want to miss out on this amazing and unbelievable fishery.

We still have months of great fishing left, with some fantastic fish still making a return to our area. So get out there and fish. Who knows? Maybe I will be writing about you next week.

Tight Lines,

Capt. Skip Maguire

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