• Posted by Nick Honachefsky
  • On May 20, 2019
  • Comments
  •  2

If you want a chance at landing a true tiderunner weakfish of 8 pounds and greater, now’s your shot in the NJ/NY area.

Weakfish are on the spawn through the month of May, and any large females will be hanging in the back bay waters, patrolling the flats and channels of the ICW, creek outflows and inlets. Tiderunner weakies, as is their namesake, like to feed when the tide is moving as they follow the flow to suck down morsels of worms, crabs and baitfish. You’ve got to get up pretty early to fool the spiketooths as most will feed in the dark hours and pre-dawn before the sun comes up, until about a half hour after sunrise, then the bite pretty much shuts off.

Set up with a medium/light type of spinning rod such as the GLoomis IMX Blue Pro series matched with a Shimano Stradic 4000 reel. Spool up with light line such as 10-pound Berkley Trilene or 20-pound Power Pro braid. With a weakfish’s keen eyesight, fluorocarbon leader is a must with little to no terminal tackle. To your running line, uni to uni knot a 5 foot section of 10 to 14-pound fluorocarbon leader, then a loop knot to a wide array of favorite soft rubber baits.

Most weakfish hounds opt to use the color pink or a combination of pink/silver fleck from any manufacturers including Zoom super flukes, 4 to 5-3/4 inch Fin-S Fish, Bass Assassins or the new Kettle Creeks.

Lures are cast out and simply reeled back in at a slow drag, just enough to keep the bait moving. Contrary to thought, you do not have to jig the bait, but simply reel in slow to moderate pace. Strikes are not bone jarring, but feel like you snagged into a piece of seaweed where some weight just hangs on the line. Keep your drag set loose and plant the hook. Allow the fish to pull off the loose drag and make its run. They aren’t called weakfish for nothing and a stiff drag will rip the hook right through the weak part of the fish’s mouth. Good luck, if you find the weakies, let me know!


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