• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On March 7, 2017
  • Comments
  •  3

Nick Honachefsky shares some early spring tips towards getting in on the hot winter flounder bite in New Jersey for this week’s TackleDirect Blog post.

Winter flounder season is kicking off in New Jersey, and its not hard to get into the game, in fact, flounder poundin’ is quite simple to rig up, its more a matter of finding fish to have a successful outing. To start, light tackle is the norm. A 6-1/2 to 7-foot spinning rod like a St. Croix TIS66MM, matched with a Shimano Stradic 2500 or Penn SLAIII 3500 slammer reel will be the tool. Spool up with 12 to 20-pound Power Pro braid.

Rigs are simple, starting with a size #4 three way swivel with sinker clip. Clip on a 1 to 3 ounce coin shaped sinker or bank sinker to the sinker clip. To the remaining three-way swivel eye, loop on two snelled Chestertown size #10 to #6 hooks, or gold #8 baitholder hooks will also work with the small gap bend. Tip the hooks with tiny 1-inch yellow grubtails or yellow beads.

You want to be looking for water above 50 degrees and up to 65 degrees or so in the spring time. Target back bay channels or flats in the 4 to 15 foot range depths as flounder will sun themselves in the spring, warming up in the sunlight to become active. Many guys rely on the hour before dead high and the first hour of the outgoing for the best bite, before the tides start running hard.

Other schools of thought like the mid tide hours when chumming as the fast moving current brings disperses the chum far and wide to attract flounder to move in. Baits for flatties include bloodworms, sandworms, tapeworms, clams or artificial like yellow dyed Fishbites Bag ‘O Worms. To get a good chew going, anchor up on a ledge, fill a stainless steel can chumpot with mussel or clam mix, draping it over the side of the bow, and set your rod spread at the stern of the boat, allowing the chum to filter back in the current to where your baits are laying. Move your baits with little bumps of the sinker every minute or so and if you don’t get bit within 1 minutes, pick up and check the baits to make sure they are clear of any debris. Flounder poundin’ can be full of fun when you get ‘em chewing, and no doubt, their clean, white flaky meat is gold in the frying pan.

Gear Used

St. Croix

St. Croix TIS66MM Tidemaster Inshore Spinning Rod

Tidemaster Inshore Spinning Rods are handcrafted with St. Croix’s exclusive SC graphite for strength and durability. St. Croix Tidemaster rods are fitted with premium saltwater-grade hardware including Batson Forecast hard aluminum-oxide guides featuring new 316 stainless steel frames for dramatically improved corrosion resistance. Tidemaster rods are meticulously finished with two coats of Flex Coat slow-cure finish.



Penn SLAIII3500 Slammer III Spinning Reel

The Penn SLAIII3500 Slammer III Spinning Reel is a part of the relaunch of one of the toughest spinner lines known to guides and captains the world over. Utilizing Penn’s new CNC Gear Technology, with improved IPX6 sealing, and their proprietary Dura-Drag System, the Slammer is finally back!



Shimano ST2500HGFK Stradic FK Spinning Reel

The Shimano Stradic FK Spinning Reels are designed for anglers who demand toughness and durability in their tackle. Shimano’s Hagane reel design allows for these reels to be long lasting through your many fishing trips.



Fishbites Bag O’ Worms

Fishbites Bag O’ Worms™ is an effective alternative to bloodworms, offering consistency and convenience. Every Fishbites Bloodworm bait will be the same size, same color and same thickness and, more importantly, the same price year round. Fishbites Bloodworm baits will not require any special storage while you fish and you can simply keep them in your tackle box between trips.


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