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My First Trip Going After Bluefish Tomorrow. Any Tips?

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Me, my grandpop and uncle are going out on a charter tomorrow fishing for Bluefish. We will be on the Miss Barnegat Light out of Barnegat Bay NJ. The boat is a 90 foot catamaran and there will be about 30-40 people on the boat. My grandpop saod theres no actual casting, just dropping the bait in and jigging for fish. Ive never been on a charter before so Im looking for any tips anyone can offer about catching Blues or just charter boat etiquette in general. Any tips would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

P.S. We will be using a mixture of live bait, cut bait and jigging spoons.

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Just take it for what it is! Have fun and be safe. Remeber that on these larger "party boats", the mates work almost only for tips. Take care of them!

Jeff

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Yea I was told them guys bust their ***** and basically make only tips so Ill def hook them up with some good tips. I cant wait. My grandpop said the average is 10-15 fish a man and they average 5-10 pounds with some even 20 pounders mixed in. Ive only ever fished freshwater so Im in for a treat fighting big fish. Cant friggin wait. Ill let ya know how I made out.

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On drift boats, just keep in mind that everyone is pretty close on top of each other. If you're dropping to the bottom, don't just keep on letting out line as you'll eventually get into everyone else's line. Drop down and let out once or twice, then reel back in and drop straight down again.

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The northern strain of blues are different than mid Atlantic or southern as they run much bigger and can really put on a fight. Bluefish run in schools and will hit anything! From my own experience, I would not use any kind of treble hook, either a single hook or trailers (we call them king rigs down here) or a feather tipped with bait. Blues will tangle lines for sure, so no braid, the cheapest mono is the best way to go. If you do not own appropriate gear, use theirs. Contrary to what many people think, the majority of fish caught on a drift boat is in the middle because that is where the largest concentration of bait in the water, I know guys are always fighting for the aft or bow.

Sure these mates work hard, but don't think for a second their income is based solely on your tip. Every fish you don't keep, they sell either for bait or food, they make more on that than they do on your tip. Let's say you give them 25# of fish, that's at least $50. I have been out on boats where the customers have let the mates and captain have 30 kings, like 1 fish a person at average of 10#, that's 300# of kings worth about $600- $900 depending on the market price.

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You will be chunking bunker or jigging with spoons or diamond jigs. Use wire leaders on your bait hook and a minium of 80lb mono leader on your jigs. I do not use wire when jigging because it affects the action of the lure. use 30-40lb mono on your reel. stay away from braid especially on a party boat (some party boats do not even allow braid) good luck.

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Well it was awesome. The boat wasnt packed at all, maybe 30 people on a 90 foot boat. We used diamond jigs and caught tons of fish. Them Blues put up a hell of a fight. It was an awesome time and I cant wait to go again!

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My grandpop has the pics on his camera. Ill get him to email them to me and post for you guys to see. It was such a blast, cant wait to go again. Im a bass rat at heart but im getting an itch to fight big fish!

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