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Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2007/7/24 21:12
From Ephrata,PA
Posts: 512
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Don't forget the Bohemia, we caught schoolies right at Hack's Point.

Posted on: 2012/2/24 20:07
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Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2007/3/3 1:06
Posts: 333
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Bumping this up...want to try this too and looking for info.

Posted on: 2012/2/25 0:58


Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2006/11/10 8:32
Posts: 1586
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Re: Delaware Estuary stripers (tidal portions of Delaware R and tribs)

First, thanks to Afish for digging up my comments from last year. They were fairly detailed and I don't have much to add to them, as they are still applicable. The impact of the warmer winter on the timing of the first appearance of the stripers in numbers worth fishing over is an interesting one (Read that as follows: it keeps me guessing too). Two years ago the water warmed earlier than normal and the stripers began spawning in greater numbers than usual in the Delaware (Commonwealth of), but the spawning activity did not start more than a week earlier in Pa than it normally would have. Using that for guidance, I suspect that if the warmer weather persists, anglers using bait may be catching stripers in Pa in the last week of March or possibly the week prior. Bait fishing should continue to build and be good through April. The peak of the run, however, always occurs in May and, with the exception of Trenton Falls and the Schuylkill R below Fairmount Dam, it is possibly the only time that numerous stripers are close enough to shore to make wading or shoreline fishing with lures or flies profitable. If you have a boat, you may be able to get on the fish earlier, but for the most part they will be 15-35 ft deep, giving the advantage to boaters and individuals with surf rods and a few oz of lead. ( Boaters: Be careful. This is not your local lake; it is big water with big waves in windy conditions and most anytime a tug or ship is on the move, but especially when they are running against the tide).

That having been said, a few large females (the largest fish of the year) are often found cruising some NJ shallows (3-8 ft of water) before the males show up and before large numbers of stripers move onto the spawning grounds. I have seen this happen on shallow flats and more commonly where a tidal stream dumps warm water out of a near-by wetland or sewage treatment plant onto and adjacent river flat. Finding these fish, at least in my experience, would be a low percentage game unless you have learned exactly where to go. But, it is probably not a lower percentage game than is muskellunge fishing, and these female stripers are usually 36-42 inches long and very heavy. Otherwise, fishing at that time should for the most part be from a boat in deeper water until groups of fish start going into the shallows to spawn (generally 59-60 deg water temp as a guideline).

So what is a good day in the last three weeks of May? If you are landing 5-8 fish per hour between 18-32 inches (mostly 22-27 inches) you're having a real good day. Larger fish are around at that time and can typically run up to 42 inches long. Even larger ones are present, but rare. March and April seem to be the time that the really large fish are caught, and almost always with bait. Again, the Schuylkill and Trenton Falls do not follow this rule of thumb, and seem to produce larger fish throughout the run.

ALERT: If you fish the NJ side of the Delaware this year, you will be required to possess a FREE marine fishing permit and you must abide by NJ regs. If you fish the Pa side you must have a FREE Pa marine fishing permit. Both permits are readily available on-line from the respective states' fisheries web sites and may be printed out on the spot. I carry both in addition to my Pa license, which is good on both shorelines (see Pa Summary Booklet of Regulations). If you do not carry the NJ permit and are fishing in NJ the fine starts at $300 and goes up from there into the thousands. This also means that if you wish to keep a striper from the Pa slot limit, you can't have it in possession while over the NJ state line in a boat or on shore. The state line is roughly the center line of the river, but varies, particularly around islands. My recommendation: consult a USGS topographic map or perhaps the navigational charts that you can find on-line. All stripers caught on the NJ side of the line must be immediately released, as Pa's and NJ's regulations differ. Additionally, if you decide to use bait in NJ (perhaps out of frustration). you must use a non-offset circle hook when fishing the typical size striper hooks. Check the NJ regs for the hook size at which the circle hook reg takes effect.

This fishing in the tidal Delaware is pretty much over by Memorial Day weekend or certainly by June 1-3.




Posted on: 2012/2/25 9:14

Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:32:45
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:35:31
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:37:34
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:39:17
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:41:38
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:44:50
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:45:43
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:48:15
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:48:31
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:49:45
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:52:30
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:53:21
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:55:54
Edited by Mike on 2012/2/25 9:56:45


Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2010/1/24 10:09
From Secane
Posts: 169
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thanks Mike for all that information!! WOW!! Ive never had any luck by the UPS terminal. You pretty much have to hit that area at the high tide time since its just a big old mud flat at LOW!! Ive heard a lot of stories over the years about that area.

Posted on: 2012/2/25 10:05


Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2006/9/13 22:36
From Tioga co. formerly of bucks co.
Posts: 5229
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for Trenton and above its easier to get them on a fly. 8wt. to 12wt. 9' rods. sinking shooting heads and floating line. large deceivers and clousers in white/silver, white/chart. blue/white, olive/white will work during the spawn time (herring spawn). large gurglers "V" waked on top work well in low light conditions. Calhoun st. bridge, scudders falls, lambertville/new hope, center bridge, all are good places to find spring fish. leaders 2ft. to 12 foot long down to 20 lb. test. use a stiff material for leaders. Korkers and a shooting basket is a must have wading the river..

Posted on: 2012/2/25 11:17
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Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2009/7/14 22:13
From Tailwater USA
Posts: 388
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The CHesapeake flats unfortunately have made a serious decline over the last 8 years or so. I know this sounds like a way back when story, but that place was totally unbelievable about 10-15 years ago. Huge numbers of big fish and very little boat traffic. A fish I caught there in 2001 made the Abel catalog

Posted on: 2012/2/25 14:43


Re: Delaware River Stripers

Joined:
2006/11/10 8:32
Posts: 1586
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"Way back" (8-10 yrs, for instance) is hardly way back for a fish that can live over 20 years. The 2011 year class is one of the largest in a long time, so more of those exceptional fishing years may be on the way.

Posted on: 2012/2/25 14:59



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