Each year during the late summer as I wait for the striped bass to return to my local waters I turn my focus to the summer run of weakfish we see in the Great South Bay. Prior to this week my search for the weakfish has been unsuccessful but I am happy to report that the calendar flipping to September has spurred some action on this front and VERY good action at that.

Weakfish Bluefish Long Island Fishing Charter boat

Beautiful Great South Bay Sunrise

On Monday I departed in beautiful sunny and calmĀ conditions. I loaded up my livewell with my favorite weakfish bait, live peanut bunker, and headed across the bay with high hopes. Gathering the live baits is a early morning affair where they are readily available on the surface and very easy to get the castnet on. Once the sun gets up higher the baitfish will seemingly vanish, they are still there but are down deeper making it much harder to get to them. As a result of being out so early I arrived on the fishing grounds well in advance of the tidal conditions I prefer for the weakfish.

While waiting for the flood current to build I killed some time bucktailing fluke and straggler bluefish. As the current built the bluefish turned on in a typical blitz with the fish crashing bait on the surface and willing to take any lure thrown at them. Caught the blues till my arms were weary before setting my sights on the weakies.

Long Island Weakfish on Great South Bay

Long Island Weakfish on Great South Bay

Did not take long for the first taker as a decent 20 inch fish found a live bait to it’s liking, short while later another in the similar size. Final weakfish tally for the day was 5 before the bluefish showed again making short work of the bunkers.

The next day, Tuesday was my Birthday and the weatherman gave me strong West winds with rain as I left the dock. Bait was thick and loaded up quickly. Again I was onsite earlier than I wanted to be so I fished around the Fire Island Inlet area and had some bluefish before making my move back into the bay for the incoming current.

The action started off fairly slow but as the incoming current aided by the strong west wind started cooking I experienced action with weakfish that I have not seen for longer than I can recall. For almost two hours I was hooked upĀ on every drift with some quality fish. These were not the usual summer run “spikes” of 14-21 inches we see most times but instead were all very nice fishing ranging from 25-28 inches. I did keep one for the dinner table and it went 5lbs on my BogaGrip scale. 10 other beautiful fish came into the boat and were all safe released. As the current slowed, the fish shut down and the bluefish took over once again.

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Safe to say I did not even notice the weather with the action being so good. Two excellent days on the water and I look forward to more of these beautiful fish the rest of September before once again changing gears to target the striped bass that should be back in town by early October.