Head Boat Fishing Excursions on LBI

By MARIA SCANDALE | Mar 23, 2018

If you’re looking to head out party boat fishing from the south end of Long Beach Island, the Miss Beach Haven is an 80-foot party boat with half-day ocean and bay trips for the family, and can be scheduled for charters for special events as well.

“We cater to family; we’re a family-friendly boat,” said owner Frank Camarda, who took delivery of the newly built vessel in 2006. The boat can carry 100 passengers and crew.

“The Miss Beach Haven is equipped with the finest electronics available to ensure both the safety of its passengers and crew as well as a productive day of fishing,” sums up the website. “A successful and safe fishing trip is our goal. Our courteous and professional crew are there for you always.”

“This vessel is powered by twin MTU 600Hp diesel engines, giving her a cruise speed of 18 knots. The cold mold construction makes for a most comfortable, quiet and smooth ride,” adds the captain. “On board you will find a spacious cabin with plenty of seating room and a complete snack bar with treats for all.”

The schedule starts with fluke fishing, and the charter fishing trips also target seabass, bluefish, blackfish and more. Watch the website missbeachhaven.com as it becomes updated for 2018 with schedule details, fares and much other information.

The website covers probably all of the “frequently asked questions” that a first-timer would have ... and there are links that will interest even an old salt.

Wondering “what items to take deep sea fishing” or about “seasickness considerations”? Check out the blog of “Tommy P,” under the “Articles” heading at the top of the website home page.

The boat departs from the dock at Centre Street and the bay in Beach Haven. Phone 609-978-9951 or contact them by email at missbeachhaven@comcast.net.

A little more about the men at the helm:

Captain/Owner Frank Camarda began his career as a young mate fishing with his father in Tuckerton. He has performed all aspects of virtually every job aboard various types of fishing vessels during his 30 years of experience.

Camarda has a degree in electronics engineering, to which he applied his knowledge in assisting with the wiring of the newly constructed vessel, as well as the day-to-day operations and daily maintenance. His specialty includes wreck fishing and blackfishing in the spring and fall, and he enjoys fishing with his weekend friends.

Captain Brant Whittaker has been a South Jersey boat captain for almost 10 years. His love of fishing, people and a new boat add up to a good day on the water. “If the fish are around he finds them!” 

“I love to Blackfish," Whittaker tells folks on the website. "With a little patience and a lot of bait I have hauled in a few nice ones over the years. But the ultimate is tuna fishing. This new boat was built for offshore trips. Plenty of room to fight a fish all night long. So bring the family for a day or half day, or plan an offshore adventure with myself or Captain Frank.”

As a different adventure, departing from the same dock, Black Pearl Pirate Tours is an interactive pirate excursion in the bay – trips for kids during the day and sunrise cruises with entertainment and a bar on board in the evening. A link with all the info is at the top of the Local Links spot on the Miss Beach Haven’s home webpage.

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North End Traditions

At the northern end of Long Beach Island, from the boat basin on the bayside at 18th Street in Barnegat Light, head boats have been established in the same families for generations, yet the vessels are new versions of the boats bearing well-known names.

The Miss Barnegat Light and the Carolyn Ann III are uniquely different options for a memorable time – take them both!

The Miss Barnegat Light is a 90-Foot catamaran. “Ways to Make This the Best Summer Ever” is how the Miss Barnegat Light’s updated web page invites guests to come onboard this popular boat.

“You can:

“•  Go on a fishing trip with your kids. Miss Barnegat Light offers daily fishing trips during the summer. Leave at 8 a.m. and return with your haul at 1 p.m.

“• Watch the sun go down on an evening cruise in Barnegat Light. We offer cruises at 5:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. during the summer. If there’s a full moon, you can even hop on a late-night cruise. All time slots include a cash bar.

“• Spend almost a full 24 hours tuna fishing off the Jersey Shore. We offer tuna fishing charters for anglers of all skill levels and ages. Book your trip today to make this summer the most memorable (and delicious!) one yet.”

The Miss Barnegat Light runs daily fishing and evening cruises all summer (and some beyond the season).

She is equipped with state-of-the-art electronics and boasts twin Caterpillar C32 ACERT engines. With a rating of 2800 brake horsepower, the Miss Barnegat Light is one of the fastest party boats on the East Coast. “Cruising at an average speed of 25 knots, we can get you to the fishing grounds fast, minimizing traveling and maximizing your fishing time.”

The boat caters to all skill levels, and no fishing license is needed for the deep sea trips.

Miss Barnegat Light has been in business since the 1950s. The current owner’s grandfather was the original owner. The late Capt. John Larson and his wife, Marion, bought the original Miss Barnegat Light from his father in 1962. The current catamaran, a stable, clean and safe vessel, is a larger replacement.

The website missbarnegatlight.com features easy-to-navigate categories of  the vessel’s excursions. Click on each one for details of evening/sunset cruises, summer fluke and seabass, offshore tuna, and striper fishing. Bluefishing trips are not featured this year except for private charter trips; the fish have not been in close range since Superstorm Sandy. But if that changes, the info will be on the “bluefishing” section of the website.

Just a few highlights of the different categories – evening cruises into the ocean start Memorial Day weekend. No reservations are needed for the $14 per-person experience. In the summer, on many nights dolphins may be spotted, or a very occasional whale. Bird life, beautiful views of the Barnegat Lighthouse and the breathtaking sunset are a must-see. Children get the chance to steer the boat in the pilot house with Captain Lou.

For fluke and seabass, daily summer fishing trips start in mid-late June and go through Labor Day.

If you’re up for an adventure of offshore tuna fishing this fall, the Miss Barnegat Light will be doing 30-hour offshore tuna trips every weekend starting Sept. 22. See the website for times and other details. Tuna fishing is by reservation only; call 609-494-2094 to book.

Call the above number or see the website for more.

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An inviting sight to see going out or coming back in, the Carolyn Ann III has classic yet updated lines that seem to say its owners have loved this business for a long time. Welcome aboard.

The owners sum up Carolyn Ann III’s offerings: “fast, clean and comfortable; all latest electronics for your safety and finding the fish; free bait provided; rods rented; clean rest rooms; fully Coast Guard approved; bring the kids – full galley onboard.”

“The Carolyn Ann III welcomes fishermen of all levels aboard, from experts to first timers. The crew is always happy to help you get the fish.”

The owners in the Hammarstrom family have been the knowledgeable and experienced Capt. Bill Hammarstrom and his son and daughter, Capt. Will Hammarstrom and Gina Lawrenson.

“Our boat is 45 years old and was owned by my father. Now it’s my brother and myself who own the boat,” said Lawrenson.

“It has been in the family and in business for a long time, and we still have a lot of familiar faces,” she said of the many return customers. “We always like to see new faces, too.”

Short-term spring fishing begins April 7, just Saturdays and Sundays at first, said Lawrenson. The season starts with blackfish and maybe cod. “Then that season shuts down, and as the federal government opens up bottom fishing, that’s when we go every day for sea bass, flounder, usually around the end of May, and then we go every day June, July, August, September.”

The history is that the 85-foot Carolyn Ann was built in 1973 by Bill Hammarstrom locally in Waretown. The business has been family-owned for over 50 years. Today in the wheelhouse, Captain Will has up-to-date technology that helps him finds the fish, but also has over 40 years of experience fishing the water around Barnegat Light.

In the spring and fall, in addition to the regularly scheduled trips, the Carolyn Ann III is available for charters. Call 609-693-4281 for details.

By the way, besides the website, carolynanniii.com, the new Facebook page is another outlet to see some of the photos of great catches and smiling faces. Comments illustrate the boat’s goal of offering “a helpful, friendly crew.”

Liam Dorsey wrote on Facebook, “This boat is awesome. I myself work as a mate up north on another fishing boat and I keep coming back to this boat for school trips and during the summer by myself. Even when fishing is tough Gina and the rest of the mates make sure you have a great time! Don’t forget to tip the mates, they work very long days to make sure you get home satisfied, even more so than a waiter or waitress.”

Craig Cislo complimented, “Great fishing charter/party boat. Our large group made a reservation and they reserved the bow for us. The mates were super helpful and patient with the kids and their mess of tangles and continuous questions. Five stars all around, highly recommended this boat for a half-day fishing trip.”

When the season starts up this spring, you can find the recent fishing report right online. The inshore and offshore weather reports are another easy-to-find feature of the website.













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