Hot time, cool blues

Kevin Baldwin, of New Castle, wrestles with a giant whip tail ray caught from the surf. (Submitted photo)

Kevin Baldwin, of New Castle, wrestles with a giant whip tail ray caught from the surf. (Submitted photo)

Hot, hot, hot!

You could cook a hamburger on pavement.

But the fish are wet and cool, so they don’t seem to mind.

The water clarity in the surf and the Indian River Inlet is a nice green color from phytoplankton. You can see six feet into the water at the inlet. Cape Henlopen is hit or miss for clear water. Rehoboth bay is clear to six feet just a couple of days ago. Indian River bay not as much, but still decent clarity and the same with Assawoman bay. The water temperatures are bathtub hot, but the fish are still hitting.

The Harbor of Refuge Light on the outer wall is one of the scenic stops on the coast. (Submitted photo)

The Harbor of Refuge Light on the outer wall is one of the scenic stops on the coast. (Submitted photo)

Indian river inlet is producing some nice ten-pound range bluefish. They are hitting bucktails, spoons, or plugs, but of course they are bluefish, they will hit anything.

Meanwhile there are the summer snapper blues in the surf hitting mullet rigs and the real small ones are hitting top and bottom rigs with fishbites. Again these are bluefish, and they will eat anything. The schools are mostly on the southern beaches from Dewey to Fenwick Island. Lot of bunker schools moving up and down the beaches as well.

Outdoors column logo by . Croaker are getting bigger and everyone is glad to see that. They are good to eat if you get a good cooler full.

The tuna bite is off the chain chunking butterfish mostly as Masseys canyon. Boats are doing well in no time and spend more time getting there and back than fishing. It has been some great action for most of the fleet. Some great Mahi catches and billfish in the mix.

Bowers beach has some decent flounder action at the jetty. The Delaware bay is full of small croakers which are getting bigger to keeper size. Lots of small weakfish around, and oyster crackers are always abundant.

Stay hydrated out there, this will be a hot week.

Storms

We had some really bad pop-up storms hit Ocean City area on Wednesday. They had a funnel cloud and a water spout near Assateague Island.

It is always important to watch the weather this time of year.

This heat can cause some seriously fast storms and they will sneak right up on you or even form over your heads.

Most of our fishing rods are made with material that conduct electricity. There are warning labels on them, always good to get the gear down in a storm.

Lighthouse tour

The other evening I took a lighthouse tour with the Delaware River And Bay Lighthouse Foundation which was founded in 1999 by Bob Trapani.

Our tour guide was Red Moulinier who now runs the foundation.

In 2003 the foundation received the lease for the Harbor of Refuge light and in 2004 they gained ownership of the lighthouse. Thanks to the Lighthouse Act, they were able to apply for ownership which took about a year and a half.

Before all of that, in 2002 they started the restoration process. The first step was to take the lexan covers off the windows. The light was removed in 1973 and automated with the light we see today.

The covers were put on the windows, and left the lighthouse in total darkness until 2002.

It is still an active lighthouse today used for navigation in the Delaware Bay.

If you want to take a really neat tour with the family, visit the foundation’s website, http://www.delawarebaylights.org/

It is very educational about the history of the not only the lighthouses but the National Harbor of Safe Refuge.

Did you know the inner wall took 40 years to build because it was done by hand, but the outer wall took only four years, because they had steam power by then?

Rich King’s column appears Thursdays in the Delaware State News.

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