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Father's Day looks to be a good fishing day around LI

Many fishing clubs plan several open boat trips

Many fishing clubs plan several open boat trips during the year for saltwater species such as striped bass, fluke or scup. These happy anglers connected to bring in some porgies aboard the Capt. Bob out of Mattituck in August 2013. Credit: Tom Schlichter

If you were hoping to get dad out for some Father's Day fishing this weekend, your timing couldn't be better. Stripers and big blues continue to plow into bunker schools wherever they find them, and fluke action has improved significantly in recent days.

With the weather forecast a bit unsettled -- and heavy fishing pressure likely on Sunday -- it might be wise to think about bumping your trip up to Saturday should you have some scheduling flexibility.

On the West End, fluke catches continued to improve this week out of both Jones and Fire Island inlets. "We're catching summer flatties both inside the bay and out in the ocean," said Capt. Mike Wasserman of Freeport's Capt. Lou Fleet. "Typical pool winners are running 6 pounds and most anglers are taking home a pile of fillets. Pink Gulp! has accounted for most of the pool winners, so come prepared."

The Captree fleet and boats sailing out of Moriches and Shinnecock inlets have also seen improved fluking with steady action on incoming tides and plenty of blues at the inlets for those just looking to bend a rod. For stripers, search out the bunker schools, snag one of the big baitfish and swim it back out into the pods. The odds are high that you'll connect with a linesider in the 20- to 30-pound class.

Anglers targeting fluke out of Hempstead Harbor, Huntington, Port Jefferson and Mattituck are also seeing fast action with enough keeper fluke to keep the smiles spreading. The toothy flatfish have been chasing sand eels, so bucktails tipped with spearing have been the ticket. Find the bait in 20- to 30-foot depths and you should catch with ease. Sea robins have inundated the North Shore beaches of late, but surfcasters are pulling a mix of porgies, blues and small bass on lightweight jigs each evening just before dark.

Out on the East End, doormat fluke continue to be the main draw at Shinnecock and Montauk, with many anglers reporting several keepers in the 4- to 5-pound class, but top fish often running between 6 and 10 pounds. Fishing aboard the Miss Montauk late last week, Ken Base of Glendale showed how it's done. He used a Glow Spro bucktail to collect a limit with his top two fluke weighing 7 and 11.06-pounds! "Heck of a day," he said.

Improved boating access

to Forge Pond

It's not often that Long Islanders are treated to new or improved freshwater access, so the recently completed upgrade to the Forge Pond (Peconic Lake) Fishing Access Site on the Peconic River should be welcomed.

Located off South River Road, just south of the LIE, the $462,000 DEC project includes expanded parking, safety improvements, a new concrete ramp for launching trailered boats, plus a dock for launching kayaks and canoes.

Anglers can also cast from the docks as long as they don't interfere with the boats. The upgrade was paid for with stewardship money from the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF).

Forge Pond is Suffolk County's third-largest lake at 120 acres. It features an abundance of largemouth bass, chain pickerel, black crappie, sunfish and brown bullhead. It is also a favorite spot for kayak fans in the fall when the shoreline foliage begins to change colors.

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