15 posts in this topic

Well fellas, it has taken time to compile the pictures from what was an awesome week on the Sand, but I have gathered most of the pictures of everything we caught, and have my facts straight. I hope you enjoy the stories from the most memorable beach vacation I have ever had! It was nice to meet a bunch of guys from the board, and hopefully I can see you again when I come back down this weekend for round two!

My goal at the beginning of the week was 10 sharks, with hopefully 5 over 6 ft. I thought I was aiming a little high with this estimate............


As we do every year, my family, consisting on my Mom, Dad, and two younger brothers (Scott and Drew) ventured to Bethany Beach, Delaware for our annual beach vacation. Like every year, we stayed at the Northernmost part of Bethany, right next to the 3r's fishing drive-on beach. When we arrived on Saturday, July 25th, the first thing I did was pick up my 2009 Drive-on tag, stopped by the shop to get some fresh bait, and hit the sand. I had been DYING to get out and do some sharkin' all summer. To say I was excited would be a serious understatement.

Although I was planning on taking it easy the first night, and tying up some new rigs without sharkin too hard- I couldn't resist putting all three of my rods in the surf. I came with my Penn 9/0, a Daiwa Sealine 50, and a Shimano 6500 Batirunner. They were all spooled with 50/80, 50/80, and 25/80 lb test Hi Seas Grand Slam monofilament respectively. Within the first hour of putting bluefish heads in the water- I beached a beautiful 5.5 foot Sandbar/ Dusky (I can never tell them apart- I am more interested in the fight!)


It was not a bad way to start off my week! I headed in early, just after seeing Finaddict land a nice Sand Tiger. Needless to say I knew it was going to be a great week.

I finished off the night with Finaddict and friends helping me land a 4ft+ butterfly ray just as I was about to pack in the last rod. Always pull the rods in last!


I got up early Sunday to meet my buddy Blake on the sand. He is a Baltimore, <acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland"><acronym title="Maryland">MD</acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym></acronym> naitive, but had cut his teeth sharkin in the surf down in Florida. He had no idea there were sharks to be caught up north until he saw my facebook profile. Sure enough, we hit the sand together ready to rock. He was armed with his 16/0 (that reel is freakin huge........), 10/0, and a 6500 baitrunner.

That morning we were slow yakkin out baits, but by the time I had dropped all of the baits, 3 of the 6 had gotten runs before I even got back to the sand. Shockingly, nothing ate the bait, so I assume they were simply smaller Sandbars gnawing on the bigger baits. The hot day went on, and we hung out on the PACKED beach for a little while, soaking baits for long periods of time. At about 4:30pm....my 6500 starts bouncing , the 20/0 circle hook was set, and the fight was on.

These beachgoers didn't want to leave the water as the shark took me north down the beach......



After a 15 to 20 minute fight, this beautiful Sand Tiger was beached, measuring 106 inches- 8ft 10inches. What a gorgeous fish. She was on the beach for less then 3 minutes, and back in the water with the hook out!




After the beachgoers were done questioning me, and were busy packing up their things, we were able to yak out new baits and await another bruiser Sand Tiger. This time Blake's 10/0 rigged with a whole Tuna Head gets eaten, resulting in this fine specimen. This one came in at 8ft even.



When I got back to the rods, the 6500 baitrunner started screamin', and we put this beautiful Sandbar/ Dusky on the beach. She measured 73 inches. Pictures were tough to find on this sucker too. Here is a headshot.


Almost immediately after we had released this shark and yakked out another tuna head, not long went by and the 10/0 started screaming again! This time, it was Ryan's turn to fight her, and we beached this 8ft 1inch Sandtiger that had been terrorizing surf fisherman all day. Look at all those rigs in her mouth!




We cleaned up her mouth quickly and she left with alot less metal in her then before. Oh, and now she could actually open her mouth. How she gobbled down the Tuna head is beyond me!

After a few more runs that night without any sharks to show, it started to get pretty nasty, and we headed home. What an amazing way to kick off the week. It was Sunday night, and we already had 5 sharks on the sand, with 4 of them over 6 ft!


After sharking til about 4am, I decided to recuperate and slept in til about 5pm. When I woke up it was cloudy with thunderstorms, but it soon cleared up enough to warrant a short night on the beach. Unfortunately Blake had to go back to Baltimore, but kindly left me his 10/0 to use for the rest of the week.

That night, on a tasty piece of stingray, I fought this gorgeous 99 inch Sand Tiger to the beach. 8ft 3 inches and fat!

My dad forgot to turn the headlamp off....so the pics didn't turn out very well.


After catching this with a limited crew, we decided not to push our luck in limited light, and decided to make a early morning of it the next day.


My Dad, brothers, and I all woke up at about 4am to get on the beach and have baits soaking just as the sun came up. Right away I ended up landing a 4ft wide Butterfly Ray, and was hoping that it would not be a morning full of rays. About an hour went by and one of my rods started bouncing. I thought it was a bluefish beacause of how soft the pickup was, but when I reeled down to set the circle- the fight was on! I handed the 6500 to my youngest brother and he beached this healthy 6ft 7inch Snaggletooth:


It was so great to see the smile on his face after catching a Sand Tiger of his own! I was so proud of him. About an hour after his catch, my rod goes down and I land an identical twin to my brother's. It was exactly 6ft 7 inches, and didn't have a hole from where we hooked the last one!

As the sun peeked out above the horizon, the bite got slower, and the napping/ eating ensued. I needed to get geared up for another night of sharkin. We had several friends and relatives in the area at this point during the week, and had a bunch of people ready to watch a monster get landed that night. We didn't dissapoint! On the good ol' 6500 baitrunner, my brother Scott hooked up with a solid Sandie right at 7ft 10 inches! This was his first shark, and in his pictures he was going for the badass look...haha



That was it for the night, and I certainly wasn't complaing. The guests got what they were looking for, and both of my younger brothers had caught there first sharks in the same day! The only one left was my dad (mom wasn't interested in reeling one in...haha). He still hadn't had any toothy pullage yet. Everytime it was his turn on a rod, it was a butterfly ray!


Mom made us take the day off, and we ventured out to eat a nice family dinner at Phillips all-you-can-eat seafood buffet. I complained, but not too much once I got a hole of the all you could eat prime rib.

We got a good nights rest, and Lord knows that we were going to need it! Thursday morning was just around the corner.


When the alarm woke me up Thursday morning...I had no idea how awesome the next few hours would be. We got up at 4 and had baits soaking by 6. By 7:30 we had FIVE sharks on the sand!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This included the biggest of the week- AND MY DAD's FIRST! She was the first of the day, and didn't even let me get all my rods yakked out. I was pulling the kayak up on the beach when she started screaming the Sealine 50.

After a great fight, dad brought her in like a pro. 110 Inches. 9ft2. This was one massive Sand Tiger. Just look how big that head is!





This wasn't all. We landed 2 more Sand tigers- I never had a chance to drop my 4th bait until all 3 that had been yakked caught a fish!

My buddy from high school got his first- an 87 inch- 7ft 3incher.



My 3rd Cousin, Ricky, had about a 40 minute battle with this sucker on the Sealine 50. The pictures say it all! He was a little hesitant getting on the back of it!

98 inches (8ft 2inches)




I ended up bringing one on a Mahi head all the way into the surf. It was another ST that was easily over 7ft. We touched the metal leader and then the circle hook came out. I consider it a quick catch and release!

At about 7:20 I caught this 7ft 7incher:


What a morning! I was amazed to see how thick those sharks were. I must have been dropping the baits right on their head! We regrouped after the muscle-ripping morning and got ready to go for that evening. Instead of staying out late, we only hit the sand for the evening fish. I ended up with this fine specimen. A sandbar/ dusky at 5ft 1inch.



That was a total of 6 sharks in one day, and without even fishing very long by any standards. What a day!


We tried the early morning fish, and only had a few small runs to show for it. It is amazing how the fish can just move, and seemingly identical conditions can yield completely different results.

I fished pretty steady, keeping the baits relatively fresh even during the day, and ended up with 2 smaller sharks. One of them however, was definitely a highlight! A Scalloped Hammerhead! She was on a really long drop, and not much of a fight on the 10/0. However it was amazing to catch one! She came in at 4ft exactly.



It was cooler then cool to see this guy on the end of my line, and I really hope I can tango with a full-size one soon!

Late at night, after a NASTY set of thunderstorms ruined my evenin fish, I was able to drop some baits and ended up with a sandbar/dusky measuring 57 inches.



This was the last day, and I desperately trying to double my goal of 10 sharks over the week. I ended up with two more sandbar sharks during the day right before leaving back for home. One was over 5 ft and came off right as we touched the tail- no worries. The final shark was the smallest of the trip and 43 inches.


What an amazing vacation! The total tally was 19 sharks (sorry if I missed one), with 14 of them over 6 feet!

I am still shocked with how well everything went. All sharks were released unharmed, and swam away in a hurry.

Some other highlights were some good sized rays, including this Croc-Hunter Killer-


I also had two rays spool me, so who knows just how big those guys were!

I hope you enjoyed the report. I had the best time fishing I could have ever imagined to have. Monster sharks, good fun, and lots of new people getting excited about the sport. Also a bunch of first-time catches! I love nothing more then to hand that rod over to an unsuspecting person, knowing that it will most likely be the biggest fish they ever catch in their lives, and certainly one they will always cherish. That is what it is all about!

Ben Dziwulski

God bless

ps: I am back at it again Friday Saturday and Sunday of this weekend! Let me know if you want to hit the sand!!!!

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HOLY COW DUDE!!! what a week you had, congratulations!!!!:happy3:

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Excellent fishing mate, Great to see you had a good time with your family.

I am glad that you had the opportunity to clean up the jawz of the shark with a mouth full -o- hooks. He will live to see another day. Congrats on a fine trip.

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I think i recognize one of those hooks from that big 'ol hog STiger bait thief......darn.

Great posts and stories.....you just need to change your name.....or go with an A.K.A....maybe "Sharkslayer"......or "Bighook"....possibly "Sharkyakker"...

Ben23 just doesn't cut the mustard.:icon_pray:

Good work...id like to say ill be there this weekend.....but not till the following weekend...i think......

Good Work Ben!

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