If pier fishing is your forte you should give the Jones Beach fishing piers located at Field 10 a shot, also there is the newly renovated Green Island fishing pier located just off the Wantagh Parkway just right of the toll booths. I have only fished the new pier at Green Island a few times but it does look like it offers some great opportunities and a nice place to explore. Their are four piers at Field 10 and there is a bait and tackle shop right next to them so you can grab anything you may need from bait to a cold soda while your fishing. Its a great place to bring the family to relax and do a little fishing. Its also a nice entrance point to the back side of Jones, you don't have to fish up on the pier, there is a wonderful cove to the right of the parking lot and a nice stretch of water to the right which heads to the Meadowbrook Bridge. It offers some great pier and back bay fishing opportunities.
The Pier at Field 10 offers a wide range of fishing opportunities. In the early season there are winter flounder which show up to get the season to the start. I think the bait shop offers a flounder derby around mid spring and there’s always a few nice fat flounders which get pulled up. The winter flounder action has not been what its been there in years past but it does have some nice days. If your out in the winter or early spring you may also find some big schools of herring which show up. If you do come across them you'll have them all to yourself as the bulk of the herring fisherman hang around Magnolia Pier in Long beach. As spring gets warmer the fishing heats up quick and life goes on like a light switch. I have found the skates will pop in first, about a week later you'll find the sea robins show up. Once the sea robins are there you can pretty much expect to start catching fluke and some spring time blues, along with some nice bass at nite. Another indicator fish is the dog fish or sand sharks, you’ll start catching waves of them, I like to see these types of fish in that lite, they are great indicators of good times to come. the past few years have seen some nice fluke caught at the Field 10 Piers it is a nice place to concentrate your efforts on them and there should be someone around with a net if you need one. You will also catch some nice cocktail blues in the spring and try some bait fishing at nite for stripped bass, there’s quite a few nice ones caught every year of the pier.
As the spring turns to summer the body of fluke at the pier builds up and you’ll be catching them in larger numbers and size. You’ll still hit some blues and see them breaking water in the summer normally before sunset, most times unfortunately outside casting range. At nite you will find some bigger blues and bass still to be caught but one of the best opportunities this pier offers and most anglers miss are the weakfish at nite. The weakfish like to hand around the lights this pier offers and there are quite a few, some of the lights hold the weakfish better then others. Some folks who are serious about catching these guys will even will bring there own spot lights. The key to catching these weakfish I think is to fish lite, stay finesse and be patient. Stick with the lighter tackle for them even at night, try perky live bait, there is a ton of live bait to be netted here, from anchovies, peanut bunker, big bunker, spearing, sand eels and much more. All this bait pools up between the piers at night with the concentration of it at the lights. To be honest some nites there will be so much bait it makes you ponder how slim the chance your bait will be found. You can also try some brightly coloured 1/4-3/4 ounce jelly tipped bucktails, sometimes they will stand out in the crowd. In short, its a great place to take a stab at the weakfish if that’s what your looking for.
As the summer heats up interesting things can happen at the Jones Beach Filed 10 Fishing Piers. The snapper blues are a giving, there are plenty to be caught at the piers. Every year a yearly snapper derby is run by the bait shop with prizes and give always for the kids. Its a great time to introduce a kid to fishing. Snappers also mean big fluke, some of the biggest fluke of the year are caught using snappers as bait this time of year, take the kids out, set a line with a live snapper and your bound to nail a nice fluke. The stripped bass action tapers off in the deep summer I have found as well as the feisty bluefish action of early spring but you will still have pods of blues breaking water time to time with fish being caught in between. One of the most enjoyable fishing I have found to be done on this pier in the summer is for kingfish, spot and trigger fish. You should run into schools of kingfish and spot easily filling up a cooler on a good day. There are not too many caught on the pier but you should also see a trigger fish or two come up as well, some of these triggers can run to 7 pounds. Its a great way to relax with some fast action. Also you may run into schools of porgy and a ton of sea bass most of which are shorts on the pier but plenty to keep you busy. There is some fantastic crabbing to be had this time of year as well. Bring a few crab traps in the summer time there are some nice blueclaws that linger around here this time of year.
As summer begins to close and the temps start to drop the strippers will make a showing again along with the bluefish. But I have found the past several years you have to keep your fingers crossed or be out on the pier at the right time to catch stripper in the fall on the pier. Early fall can show some good action and if the stripper come through you will hit them on the pier, but most likely you’ll hit some nice blues and maybe a big weakfish. Their will be hickory and American shad around as well in the fall, if they come in good numbers the game fish will be behind them. By October you can dust of your blackfish gear and round up some crabs. There are always a few nice eight pounder's pulled up and plenty of shorts. Bring a variety of crabs with you. Include some fiddler's, green's and asian's on your first few trips out. Some days they can be picky and the blackfish have been known to want what they want. When you find thy right crab stick to it.
There should be blackfish around till the temperature drops in the lower 40's then they will run to deeper waters. As the winter sets in on the pier and the air gets icy, the herring may push through, if the herring are at the pier you may find a last run of big stripper and even bluefish, you will never know unless you get out there and brave it!
On a final note about the piers... In addition to the fishing another thing I have found the Jones Beach Fishing Pier good for is that it is a nice place to stop and talk to people and check some buckets to see whats going on in the inside of Jones. You can get a good idea of what is running because in the peak season there is generally a pretty good crowd of people fishing. I like to stop grab a coffer or some hooks or jigs or anything I forgot to bring and meander on the pier. I will take a quick look around and look in some buckets, if there’s fish up on the pier I know they’ll be fish at some of my off the beat spots, its a nice place to get a good indication of the action near by all year round.