C-MAP Hot Spot: Hudson Canyon

Learn more about how to fish this Northeast hot spot.
FishTrack Staff
Carved out by the Hudson River during the last Ice Age, the Hudson Canyon now rules among the offshore fishing sect as the biggest and baddest canyon along the U.S. East Coast. Take a closer look at the legendary Hudson and learn more about the fish drawn to this underwater structure and how to effectively fish for them.
This C-MAP 3D chart provides a very clear picture of the unique bathymetry that makes up the Hudson Canyon. It's a long run from the New Jersey coast to fish the Hudson, runs of at least 75 miles each way are common, so most of the crews that fish here make it an overnight affair. Capt. Deane Lambros of Canyon Runner Sport Fishing has made over 500 canyon runs out of  Manasquan, New Jersey to target the numerous tuna species and other pelagics drawn to the canyon edge. "We use a combination of trolling and chunking," Lambros says. "In the summer, we'll troll during the day and chunk at night. Later on in the winter, it'll be all chunking all the time."
Lambros deploys a smorgasbord of offshore lures including spreader bars, jet heads and ballyhoo-Ilander combos, Joe Shutes or sea witches. Peak times for yellowfin tuna are June thorough November. Longfin albacore usually show up in mid-July, sometimes in huge numbers. The elusive bigeye tuna can make an appearance anytime, and the prized bluefin make annual runs through the Hudson as well. "Bluefin run 30 to 90 pounds in the late spring," says Lambros. "But in the fall we might see some real giants come through." Photo by www.ledgefever.com
Satellite imagery plays a key role in planning a Hudson Canyon fishing trip. Finding chlorophyll or temperature breaks over the canyon is often the first step to finding fish. "We're looking for hard edges where the water goes from blue to green, or any sort of temperature change over structure," says Lambros. There are a number of go-to structure hot spots in the Hudson, including the 100 Square, East Elbow and Southwest Corner. Warm-water eddies from the Gulf Stream can move slow over the Hudson and offer more time to attract and hold more fish and bait."
Detailed navigational charts offer a glimpse at the depths and steep walls that drop almost 4,000 feet in this "Grand Canyon of the Atlantic." The Hudson is more than 7 miles wide at its widest spot as it cuts through the edge of the Continental Shelf.
Fishing opportunities in the Northeast Canyons extend well beyond the area's famed tuna populations. Big wahoo like this are always ready to send reels screaming, along with blue and white marlin, mako sharks and swordfish. Photo by John Galvin/Mulberry Canyon.
Jeppesen's exclusive Sport Fishing Data provides useful information on all of the game fish found at the Hudson Canyon, including ID photos, local regulations and state records.

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