Was visiting family in NY this past week and took a little trip to New Jersey to do some spearfishing. We headed to Seabrite which is near Sandy Hook, and went out with captain Albie aboard the charter boat “the long shot”. We headed out in the morning and had great weather, calm seas and mostly sunny. The sheer numbers of people harvesting various sea life down there is pretty amazing, for a Tuesday.  There were party boats, charter boats, sportfishers, dozens of clam boats and perhaps lobster/crab boats, the area was bustling with life. We rounded the end of Sandy hook and headed back south to an area called shrewsbury rocks.

When we got there I couldn’t help but feel a bit skeptical:  the surface water was brown. When I jumped in Albie pointed to some bunker breaking on the surface near the boat. I swam towards it but stopped once I realized I couldn’t see the end of the 80cm gun I was carrying. I actually couldn’t see my fins.  The surface vis was probably around 3 maybe 4 feet. I tipped up and swam to the bottom gun pointed out in front of me,  Once I was down 15-20 feet, I could see hundreds of star fish on the bottom. In the bottom the vis opened up to around 10-15 feet. I hit bottom and the bottom was covered with some type of green growth, that reminded me of some type of pine moss. The bottom was green and covered with small fish. Short black sea bass and short black fish surrounded me.

After a few dives I shot my first fish, a triggerfish. Shortly after that we were surrounded by triggerfish. The 80cm gun was almost too much, I had a double wrap of mono on it, which was too much. So I grabbed Albie’s polespear from the boat.  I need to use a pole spear because I am headed to the Bahamas shortly. After a short period of learning I started just plugging triggerfish after triggerfish. The three prongs on the pole spear seem to just stick to triggers, and I don’t think one fish I shot pulled off. At one point some bluefish were swimming with the triggers and I tried to pole spear one but ended up a bit short.

On the boat Gabi and Catherine were catching triggers, black sea bass and Dogfish on hook and line.  Catherine jumped in with her 3mm but it was too cold for her.  There were so many triggers around us at one point Pat shot two triggers at one time. You would hit bottom and look up and there would be a wall of triggerfish. I also pole speared a Black fish, and Pat collected a few other black fish. The black fish are spawning and you are only allowed one per person on the boat. There are no regulations on triggerfish in Jersey waters.