Why would a fishermen want to go to NASA?

Submitted photos Antares and Cygnus launch from the pad at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility shot form the media area. (Submitted photo)

Well that was the longest week I have ever had waiting for NASA to light a candle. Can’t say that I blame them — when you have that much time and money invested into a project, you don’t just hit the button. I said to one rocket scientist, “Over in Sussex County we just get a bigger hammer.”

“Yeah, ummmmmmm, they won’t let us do that here, but I like your thinking.”

We benefited from the delays with our remote camera issues. As media we are allowed to set up cameras near the launch pad. No we don’t get to stand there. These are remote cameras rigged with sound triggers or we just set the Go Pros to hyper-lapse video. Three launch attempts, a lot of big battery packs, and forty-nine thousand plus pictures later we got a few good shots. Many asked me why would a fishermen want to go to NASA? What does this have to do with fishing? I have two answers for that.

Antares remote camera shot at the pad by Cody Croswell on a Go Pro Hero 5 set for hyper-lapse. (Submitted photo)

I’m a total space nerd enthusiast and they let me.

We use satellites to give us all kinds of info to help our fishing … how do you think those got up there?

Speaking of fishing, the next stop this spring will be surf fishing with NASA. Totally excited for that adventure. No we aren’t casting from the space station, but I might ask them to spot some fish for me. I was surprised how many folks like to fish at NASA, but if you look around Wallops Island it is a no brainer. There, like here, is surrounded by water, and wildlife. Besides who doesn’t like to surf fish?

Striped bass caught by Dave Eastburn around the inland bays. (Submitted photo)

For a mild winter we are seeing some decent fishing action. The short striped bass are hitting well around the Indian River Inlet and the bridges in Ocean City. The long liners are doing well with flies during the day at the inlet and swim shads at night. The flies go deeper along the bottom, the swim shads pick up fish when they move in at night to chase minnows in the lights. The fish are resident striped bass they are always here, you just have to be out there when they are biting. Chasing them around the inland bays is fun as well, just a little more work finding them but that is what the boats are for.

Catfish from a mill pond in Delaware. (Submitted photo/Andrew Hansen)

Tautog has been good for the charters getting out there from Ocean City to Lewes. Small tautog are being caught at the inlets but the action is slow and small.

Freshwater action has been great for bass, and catfish. Especially if you are fishing the same pond like Andrew does and can catch the same catfish over and over. I swear he can just call it in now and get it to bite. Gulp crickets on DS Custom Tackle top and bottom rigs for the win. Even the suspending bass are hitting with little enticement. On the warmer days it is a little easier. Pickerel are the hot catch too — the Saltwater Fly Anglers of Delaware have their pickerel tournament coming up soon. Catching a large snot rocket on a fly rod is a lot of fun.

Yellow perch action is finally picking up and will continue to get better or at least it is supposed to get better. Use small jigs for the perch fishing and crappie fishing. One sneaky way to find the schooling winter fish is use the Old Salt’s “Judas fish” trick. You take a legal keeper yellow perch, white perch, or crappie bass and put a hook through the dorsal fin. With about eight feet of line on a large bobber or balloon. When you release the fish, it swims right back to the school of fish, and marks them. Cast to the marker. Afterwards you scoop up the Judas fish and take it home too.

Bass caught from the same mill pond in Delaware. (Submitted photo/Andrew Hansen)

White perch are starting to hit more around the Delaware Bay beaches form Slaughter to Broadkill. The action has been better farther north. The creeks in Sussex county have been better action. Bloodworms have been the preferred bait. Minnows work well but yo have to catch them. Stay away from spillways — it is illegal to scoop minnows with a net at a spillway. Coincidentally there are minnows and fish feeding on them at the spillways.

The warm days have been wonderful. In a couple of weeks the point will close for the season on March 1. Hate when that happens. I would love to see that kept open for at least the spring surf fishing.

The May The Fish Be With You surf fishing tournament is coming up on May 2. Get signed up there is a chance at a $10,000 first place prize with 300 anglers. Surf anglers can sign up online or at Icehouse Bait and Tackle on Route 1.

The Delmarva Outdoors Expo is coming up on April 24-26. The organizers have added a lot of fun attractions this year. Mark you calendars.