After a week in the tropics, I’m having a hard time getting myself psyched back up to haul the Duck Diver out to Taylor for this week’s snottiness. The tuna blood on my favorite fishing shirt and the box of J. Stirpe Johnnys that I just got have me lusting more for a fishing rod than a decoy spread right now.Codfishing looks to have been pretty decent the last couple of weeks when the weather allowed the few boats that are still hacking away at it to get out. The Viking Fleet and the Miss Montauk II are both still doing trips out of Montauk, and the Shinnecock Star is still booking trips out of Hampton Bays whenever there’s an opportunity—and there’s been plenty of promise for a decent winter fishery this year.
If freezing your butt off in a duck blind or codfishing boat is not in your bag of tricks, the first of the winter fishing tackle shows is this weekend. It has been a long time since Long Island had a major tackle show that was worth going to. The old Fisherman one at Nassau Coliseum gradually faded into a feeble collection of mediocre tackle dealers pawning not-so-great deals for their surplus dust collectors.
The Surfcasters Journal has changed all that. Last year’s “Striper Day” show actually attracted an excellent cross-section of the surfcasting tackle industry’s prime players, particularly some of the most sought-after craftsmen among the new breed of handcrafted surfishing lure makers. Black Label, Big Fischer, Omakase and PBau will all be there this year, along with Flatlander Surfcasting, who is making the best of the best tackle bags nowadays.
The show is at Hofstra University on Saturday, January 14, and starts at 8:30 a.m. and runs to 5 p.m. There will be a line forming well before sunrise—the plug collectors looking to get their hands on some of the limited-run stuff. The Journal had a neat idea this year to spread out the rush and will be giving away gift bags to the first 400 people who come after 11 a.m.
More info is at striperday.com.
Catch ’em up or shoot ’em up … or I’ll see you at Striper Day.