Sunday, January 15, 2012

Day 248: Wind Chill

The 9/11 Memorial off in the distance behind an Arthur Kill tug.

When: Sunday, January 15th, from 9am to 9:30am
Where: The Arthur Kill via the Veterans Pier in Carteret, Middlesex County, New Jersey
What: Fishin'
Weather: Fair skies and breezy, 17 degrees, NW at 18mph and gusting to 31
Barometric Pressure: 30.28in and steady
Moon: Waning, a day before the last quarter
Water Conditions/Tide: Flood tide, low at 6:37am, cold water and slightly dirty

It's beginning to feel a lot like winter.

But there still isn't any safe ice.

If there was, I'd be on it. Instead, I'm stuck trying to find somewhere to fish that doesn't have any of the skimpy "skim" ice that makes fishing impossible.

Salt or brackish water is usually a safe bet.

It was absolutely frigid this morning. It was cold and the wind chill made it seem incredibly colder. The temperature was 17 degrees when I left the house and I would not be surprised if the wind chill was more in the neighborhood of zero or even in the negative. Seventeen degrees would normally be ice-making weather, but lakes and ponds have trouble freezing when it's so darn windy.

I headed to the pier in Carteret this morning because I've actually had some recent reports of white perch and small stripers biting in the Arthur Kill. It would have helped if I had fresh bait, but I was fairly certain that at least the perch would hit Fishbites. The jury is still out on that one though.

Fishbites, pictured on the left, are a natural bait imitation that many anglers substitute for bloodworms. Since bloodworms seem to going up in price each year, these pre-packaged baits are gaining popularity. They are used to catch kingfish from the beach in the summer, and since white perch will eat a bloodworm as quickly as a kingie, I thought I'd give it a try. It didn't work today, but whether that was because there were no fish around or they just didn't want the Fishbites, I just don't know.

What I do know is that I'm going absolutely stir crazy right now. Tomorrow is Martin Luther King Day and I have off of work. EVERY YEAR for as long as I can remember, this has been an ice fishing day. Only problem is, there is no ice this year. Actually, there is ice SOMEWHERE in New Jersey, but I'm not exactly sure where and I'm certain that it's going to take me a long time to get bait and drive there. I would absolutely love to take a drive tomorrow and get on the ice, but I'd rather not make a trip that is not going to have that outcome.

If I knew there was somewhere I could safely get on the ice tomorrow, I'd go. But...I don't, so I'm left trying to get some last-minute info or come up with another idea to go fishing tomorrow.

Oh well.

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