Crabbing, Fishing, Hunting, etc. in NJ
This topic came up, generally speaking, on another thread, on another Board. See, http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9148... It suggested to me some interest personally, and among fellow 'hounds, in the pursuit of our own chow in the waters of the Garden State. So, I figured, perhaps it's worth a more specific discussion.
Personally, living at Monmouth County's southeastern tip and being part of a family that has long enjoyed the bounty of the sea, I have drawn quite a few "free" meals from the Atlantic and the various inland waters that decorate our coast. For example, I've crabbed the Chesapeake, but I'm just as happy throwing lines into the Barnegat Bay off a lagoon dock in Mantoloking. I know there are lots of great spots dotting the gentle shores from Point Pleasant to Holgate, in Manahawkin and Toms River.
Taking a pole to the edge of the surf before the fall sun comes up, in the often Quixotic quest to have a striped bass dinner, can be sheer joy. Armed with nothing but a clam knife and extra tackle, realizing that anything but the expected disappointment will be gravy on the mashed potatoes of the zen moment one really sets out to embrace. I mean, if you really wanna catch bass, you convince a buddy with a boat to take you up to Sandy Hook.
Speaking of boats, how 'bout dropping lines near a wreck? Catching fluke in the River? Maybe getting serious and seeking out some tuna?
I s'pose that's enough to get the point across - the topic launched. Anybody else love the notion of REALLY fresh fish? A bin full of crabs? A freezer full of venison cuts?
Where do you go? What do you seek? Any advice for others who might want to try? Good charters? Boat rentals? Anecdotes?
been fishing my entire life....literally since I grew up on poricy pond. I graduated from bluegills and bass to the baddest fish in the ocean.
I enjoy all types of fishing but offshore fishing is just the best (and ridiculously expensive)
re: corvette johnny
I just deep fried a couple whole blackfish on Sunday. Real good chow - much better than the game (although, admittedly, the Russel Stover chocolates I battered and fried in the same oil after the fish were even better than the game. Hell, goin' hungry would of been better than the game.)
Well let me get this party started...................
The tale of my 43 years on this earth starts with my conception, which is suppose to have taken place aboard a boat, at the now Sandy destroyed Winters Yacht Basin, in Mantoloking NJ. I guess being conceived on the water helped contribute to my love of the shore and all things water. We always maintained a boat and eventually summer homes on the water in Toms River. I've spent many years dropping crab lines and traps into the Jersey waters and enjoying the bounty of the catch.
I've spent many a summer nights with a cooler full of beer a flashlight and a net, just shining the light into the water and scooping them up as they swim towards the light. (Is that frowned upon?) Anyway, I can't count the nights me and a few buzzed up buddies came in the house at 2am with a bushel of blue claws that we had to eat NOW. Mom waking up to our clatter in the kitchen as someone knocked the bushel over and we were now re-catching our catch on the linoleum floor. God forbid they made it onto the carpet, then they could dig their claws into the nap of the rug and really hold on for dear life.
Favorite blue claw crab is steamed, cleaned then sauteed with garlic, oil, chopped hot peppers (or seeds) seasoning to taste. From there you can add anything you want to the mix, some spinach, broccoli rabe, and some pasta..........that's an Italian Jersey Shore feast!!! (watch for shell fragments!!)
Although we had our own boat, mom frowned upon us using them for fishing, so it was the Capt. Bill Van charter out of Belmar, when we wanted to catch the treasures of the deeper waters. We were on the boat one night when the Belmar bridge got stuck and couldn't open for us to return to dock, we had to dock at the coast guard station and be transported back to our cars in a military transport truck.
Now I've taken a liking to surf fishing mostly in Long Branch and/or Island Beach State Park/Seaside Park. Nothing like bringing in a stripped bass against the surf, cleaning him and bringing him home for immediate consumption. (well some consumption then the rest goes into the freezer for friends). I like taking the filet, cutting it into finger sized pieces coat with soy, ginger and garlic and into the oven for 15 mins. Good eats.
I've never been much of a land hunter, although I recently went to a friends property in upstate New York and did some hunting, shooting. I kind of enjoyed it and am considering giving it a try again some time in the near future.
As far as any other land hunting experiences go.....about once or twice a year I will go on what might be considered a bit of a taboo hunting adventure. The wild eyed Monmouth County Cougar, most frequently hunted at Beuno Sera in Red Bank, Fri & Sat. nights. It seems the music, the lights, the lay of the land attracts wild eyed cougars from all over the Garden state, the land is ample with prey. Being married for 20 years I have to practice the the catch and release method, but it's always been the thrill of the hunt for me.
I still think that you should rent a boat in Point Pleasant and go crabbing in the Bay this summer, joon. There are a few places you can find online. The gear needed is pretty cheap and we'll gladly talk you through any questions you may have.
In the end, you get to practice patience, connect with the water, and eat well when you get home.
Yep, it would be tough to beat a day like that.
I was in Maryland with mrs porker and her elderly mother a few years back. I told them I was renting a pontoon boat, buying a few collapsible traps, and bringing them crabbing in the bay.
They tried to refuse, thinking it was just another of my crazy ideas.
Turned out to be a highlight of our trip and they still talk about it today!