Ordinarily catching a striped bass off of New York's Montauk Point in October would be about as difficult as finding companionship in a bordello with shirtpockets bulging fifty dollar bills.
Our brand new Regulator 23, purchased at Roland Boats in Southampton, N.Y. is powered by a Yamaha 250 hp. Saltwater Series outboard. Before setting out from our slip, strollers and marina patrons complimented us on her finish and design features. Needless to say, it was a good feeling. In fact, the owner of the marina, a Regulator 26' owner, was giving us last minute updates on what areas are best to fish. I was ready to take my Marion and two close relatives from Los Angeles, Calif. for a days "Bunker Chunking" for stripers and bluefish off Montauk's many north rips.
Air temperature that day was an unseasonable 78 degrees with plenty of sunshine. Sea conditions were another matter. With winds out of the NNW at 15-20 mph. pushing an already outgoing tide, waves built to 2-3 feet. What none of us realized or appreciated was that the moon phase was full. (From now on before I fish Montauk, I'll know the moon phase.)
At anchor, the sea floor was 54 feet below us; however, some 50 to 75 yards astern it rose suddenly to less than 20 feet. This almost vertical cliff caused the now incredibly fast tidal flow of 11.3 mph to shoot water straight up, creating standing swells of over 6 feet. A daunting sight. I knew chumming and chunking in these conditions would prove impossible. It was about this time that the anchor decided to slip.
Moving slow at first, then before I could power her out of the rip, we were in it. The situation was bad. Instantly, drinks went airborne, green water slipped over the bow, passengers were yelling, but through it all, the feeling of power and maneuverability that's transmitted through the helm wheel gave me confidence. I knew this boat was like no other I've owned, this boat will keep us safe!
In less than 20 minutes, the decks were cleared and we were "stemming the tide". For the uninitiated, this is a technique that requires the skipper to run his engines at just enough RPM's to keep pace with the tidal flow, just ahead of the wall of water in the rip. Fishermen work diamond jigs or live bait into the current. It was on a live eel that Marion was quick into a nice keeper bass. And soon our West Coast guests had their fill of nice bluefish. Huge smiles and tired arms replaced worried looks and white knuckles!
Our other boats (Marion I and Marion II) will always have a special place in our memories, but this one -- the Regulator -- she's the best!
Regulator – The
Finest in Offshore Sportfishing Boats
From 23 - 34 Feet
Regulator Marine, Inc. • 187 Peanut Drive • P.O. Box 49 • Edenton, North Carolina 27932 • 252-482-3837