The excerpts below were taken from an article in the The Roanoke Times By Bill Cochran Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2014 6:00 am.
… the coastline action has been just as slow as it was in the Bay.
Statistics from the Virginia Saltwater Fishing Tournament tell the story. The 2013 citation count for stripers stands at around 325, with a few more to be added as late forms are tallied. In 2012 the count was nearly a thousand more, the second highest on record at 1,331. Of that number, 107 fish weighed more than 50-pounds apiece; 11 of those were more than 60 pounds. Included was a massive 74-pound state record landed off Virginia Beach by Cary Wolfe of Bristow.
In the minds of many anglers, the final test for this season, as to whether it will be a dud or just a late starter, would be the Jan. 9-11 Mid-Atlantic Rockfish Shootout. The 11-year old event attracts the experts by offered more than $217,000 in prizes for big fish. It has the reputation of being the largest striper tournament in the country.
The anglers showed up, so did bystanders at the weigh-in station, where Hooter girls served rockfish chowder, hot cocoa and gourmet coffee.
The stripers were a no-show. The shootout, organized in 2004 to highlight what the sponsors said was some of the finest striper fishing on the East Coast, was telling a different story:
Thursday, no fish weighed in.
Friday, skunked again.
Saturday, tournament ends, no fish weighed, prize money raffled off, contest Web site has pictures of skunks rather than stripers.