Entering The Offseason

Virginia Beach Fishing Report – Long Bay Pointe

Well … we have officially entered our off-season. Fishing opportunities are very limited in January and February.  Only the most hardcore anglers can deal with the frigid weather.  But what better time of the year for a boat show! The Virginia Beach Boat Show is comming up February 8th –10th at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. If you have been thinking about buying or upgrading, now might be the time to do it. The boat show offers some great show specials and all the big dealers will be there.

The best news off the water this week is the tautog action is picking up on inshore structures. Dr Ken Neill put the Healthy Grin over some nice fish Saturday.

Some stripers have been marked 15 miles offshore, well beyond our legal waters. The Bay season of course is closed.

The black sea bass season is closed until February 1st. It tentatively reopens the 1st and runs through February 28th. The Rudee headboat will be running sea bass trips on Saturdays. They fill up very early, so give them a call as soon as possible.

North Carolina

The puppy drum have moved well south of Hatteras Island. Dogfish and skates are in the surf all most anywhere you wet a line. There should be some puffers around for those who enjoy the tender nuggets.

The big OBX news is that the Skirt Chaser, out of Oregon Inlet has caught the first blue fin tuna of the season. The fish measured 65 inches. There are also some nice yellowfin around.


Permanent link to this article: https://vbsf.net/2019/01/13/entering-the-offseason/

Bay Rockfish Season Closing, Ocean Season Opening

Virginia Beach Report

Craig Irwin with a nice 55 pound striper!

Big rockfish continued hitting the scales last week. Most of the action was coming from the eastside of the Bay, between Cape Charles and the ocean. Many fish have topped the 50-pound mark, one topped 66 pounds. The majority are being caught using eels, but a few are falling to Mojos.

Kenny Bruce & Gary Culpepper landed this 66.6LB, 50 incher. Gary was on the rod!

The Chesapeake Bay fall striper season comes to an end December 31st. The Virginia coastal season opens January 1st and runs through March 31st. The ocean season minimum size limit is 28 inches with a possession limit of 1 per person.

Dr. Ken Neill with a nice seabass!

Our offshore wrecks are holding sea bass and maybe a few flounder. The triangle wrecks are loaded up with hungry sea bass, some in the 6-pound class. The Rudee Headboat will be running 12-hour, Saturday sea bass trips starting February 2nd. The open recreational sea bass fishing season closes December 31, 2018 and reopens February 1, 2019 through February 28th.

This time of year there are usually bluefish around the wrecks and where there’s bluefish there could be a bluefin tuna or two.

On North Carolina’s outer banks surf anglers are finding small puppy drum, small trout, dogfish and black drum at the Jetties in Buxton. Several nice puppy drum were caught near ramp 55.

VIRGINIA UPDATE 12/31/2018 – Bluefin Report

On a recent sea bass trip Dr. Ken Neill ran into working birds, porpoise and bluefin tuna. The tuna appeared to be in the 100-pound class. They were about half way between the South East Lumps and the Cigar. A commercial boat also reported bluefin tuna near the Chesapeake Light Tower. Ken wasn’t rigged up for them that day, so he returned Sunday rigged and ready. He found lots of birds, bait and some porpoise at the the South East Lumps, but no tuna. He trolled out to 20 fathoms and down to the Cigar with no luck. On the way in he stop on a wreck and came back with another box of sea bass.

Permanent link to this article: https://vbsf.net/2018/12/30/bay-rockfish-season-closing-ocean-season-opening/

Large Stripers In Chesapeake Bay, Swordfish Offshore

Long Bay Pointe, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake Bay Report – Next report December 29th


The weather has been a hindrance some days; but anglers remain focused on an excellent striper season….. And just in time for local rockfish tournaments, the super sized fish are providing the action. 40 to 60-pounders have hit the scales. Most of these large fish are coming from the eastern side of the Bay, Plantation Light to Cape Charles, where boats are drifting and slow trolling with eels. School-sized rockfish are also available for anglers casting along bridge pilings and the artificial islands of the CBBT. Find diving birds and you usually find the fish close by. Some larger stripers are also in our rivers.

The local speckled trout bite has slowed; it was nice to see a comeback from the widespread kill resulting from the hard freeze of last winter. The average speck was around 22-inches, but a few gator-sized fish stretching from 27 to 30-inches were caught.

Tautog numbers should be picking up on the lower Bay and on coastal structures. Jumbo sea bass are available on many ocean wrecks along with scattered catches of triggerfish. Seabass become off limits at the end of the year, the open recreational seabass season is February 1 through February 28 and May 15 through December 31. Some big bluefish could also still make a showing near these same structures. This is the time of year boats are on the lookout for bluefin tuna rolling in some of these same areas. A lot of giant bluefins have hit the docks to our south, in Morehead City NC.

Riley Grace and crew, three nice swords

When boats can get out deep droppers should find tilefish around the Norfolk Canyon. Big seabass and bluefish are a good bycatch, as these fish often compete in the same areas. Those targeting swordfish off Virginia Beach have been rewarded with some nice fish recently.

North Carolina Outer Banks

The Kitty Hawk to Nags head beach has been slow, with mainly sea mullet and bluefish reported. Anglers fishing the little bridge in Manteo are catching speckled trout and stripers using soft plastics. Soundside anglers are reporting striped bass being caught around bridge pilings. Oregon Inlet has produced a few speckled trout and stripers.

Surf fishing on Hatteras beaches has been more productive. Large sea mullet, puffers and sheepshead are feeding on shrimp. A good number of bluefish are being caught on cut bait. Large speckled trout have been in the deeper holes along the beach. Flounder have been caught around Ramp 43. Puppy drum are scattered from Buxton to Frisco. A few citation red drum are at the point but action has slowed down lately.

Offshore trips have had a rough time with the weather but when they get out they are finding lots of false albcore, blackfin tuna, a few yellowfins, some bigeye tuna and a few wahoo.

Permanent link to this article: https://vbsf.net/2018/12/16/large-striper-in-chesapeake-bay-swordfish-offshore/

December, Striper Time In Virginia

VBSF, Long Bay Pointe Report – Next Report December 15

Aquaman Charters Photo

December … local tackle shops, marinas and boat ramps are buzzing with activity as anglers prepare to hit the water in search of giant stripers.

December is big rockfish season on the lower Chesapeake Bay and it’s off to a good start. Some monsters have already hit the scales over on the Eastern Shore. These big fish usually show first around Plantation Light and the area between the CBBT and Cape Charles. Anglers drifting live eels usually catch the larger fish. With each incoming and outgoing tide anglers should find fish all along the CBBT. A smaller class fish is usually encountered on the south side with the larger fish coming from the north end of the bridge. Dr Ken Neill says boats fishing up the bay, around the buoy 42 area have found lots of fish on the surface.

Several tournaments are planned during peak striper season. The Mid-Atlantic Rockfish Shootout is December 6th thru the 8th. Teams can leave from any port in Virginia but must weigh fish in at King’s Creek Marina in Cape Charles. And the 10th Annual JMU Rockfish Duke Club Tournament is Thursday, December 13th through December 15th.

Jimmy Kolb

Speckled trout fishing has been outstanding inside Lynnhaven Inlet for a couple of weeks. Long Bay Pointe Bait and Tackle has weighed a number of citation fish. Most fish have been caught on Gulps or on Mirr-o-lures. As the weather continues to cool Mirr-o-lures retrieved very slowly will work best.

With striper season wide-open tautog fishing has temporarily taken a back seat, but the bite should continue to improve for anglers targeting them.

Healthy Grin Sportfishing

Fishing ocean structures has been excellent for sea bass, triggerfish and chopper bluefish. The tilefish have been cooperating for those running offshore to deep drop. The Rudee Inlet head boat will be running sea bass trips throughout December. Boats fishing in 500 fathoms  have found good numbers of bigeye tuna.

A giant bluefin tuna encounter this time of the year is always a possibility for anglers trolling the ocean for stripers or bluefish. Theses giants usually show somewhere between Virginia Beach and Morehead City NC each winter.

Outer Banks NC Rundown

Anglers fishing the Outer Banks of North Carolina are catching a few trout and bluefish. Hatteras Island anglers have been catching sea mullet, bluefish, some trout, blowfish and a few drum. Sound fishermen are catching stripers. Stripers usually hang around the bridges on the west side of Roanoke Island in December.

When the wind lets up the OBX offshore fleet is catching lots of meat fish, yellowfin, blackfin tuna, dolphin, swordfish and wahoo.

Permanent link to this article: https://vbsf.net/2018/11/30/december-striper-time-in-virginia/

Nice Speckled Trout Action

Long Bay Pointe Report, Virginia Beach

Anglers have been enjoying a nice speckled trout bite inside Lynnhaven, Little Creek and Rudee Inlets. Some large fish, 5 to 6 pounds have been caught inside Lynnhaven. Pictured is Casey Copeland and  Doug Garnet with 5lb 12oz specks caught inside Lynnhaven.

Striper fishing will take center stage soon. Striper fishing on the lower bay is good to excellent Thanksgiving through New Years. There have already been large fish taken in the Bay to our north. As the weather continues cooling these fish will move into local waters.  Although most of the action is still to our north and in rivers, Long Bay Pointe reports keeper-sized fish at the CBBT. The best action comes at night under the lights.

Bay tautog fishing is slow but nearby ocean structures are producing. Sea bass, bluefish and triggerfish are also available. Sunday, Wes Blow and Chris Boyce reported a nice limit of seabass to 18 inches. While  diamond jigging for bluefish they got a surprise catch, a 48.5 inch black drum.

A few boats made it offshore and returned with yellowfin and bigeye tuna. The Rudee headboats are running sea bass trips and doing well. These trips will continue through December.

Carolina Report

Surf anglers from Nags head to Hatteras are catching sea mullet, blow toads, small bluefish and trout. Large sharks and some red drum are being caught at the point in Buxton.

Soundside anglers are catching a few trout. There should be some stripers feeding around the bridge pilings on the west side of Roanoke Island.

The OBX pier reports go like this, Avalon pier reports trout and puppy drum. Nags Head Pier has seen trout, flounder and blues. Jennette’s is catching small blues. The Outer Banks pier is catching lots of blow fish and some trout.

The offshore fleet return to the bluewater after a bunch of blow days and caught blackfin, yellowfin, wahoo, mahi and king mackerel.  Captains targeting swordfish have been catching. The king fishing is red hot off Hatteras now.

Permanent link to this article: https://vbsf.net/2018/11/19/nice-specks-trout-action/