The man's smile stretches almost as wide as the giant striped bass in his right hand. A novice fisherman, he's snagged his very first catch aboard one of Celtic Quest Fishing's group boats. A crew member snaps a photograph of the triumphant moment. Although it depicts only a moment in time, that photo recounts a much larger story. The man can point to it when he tells friends how he grabbed hold of rod and reel, cast a line, and wrestled with a resilient foe—ultimately pulling the fish up onto the dock.
This sort of experience happens frequently aboard Celtic Quest Fishing's group-fishing boats, which can carry 70–100 people at a time. The company, founded by Port Jefferson native Captain Des O’Sullivan, maintains two of the giant vessels. They carry groups out in search of black fish, fluke, porgies, or any other species Poseidon sends out to defend his honor. Regardless of the targeted catch, Celtic Quest Fishing's expert crew members supply all necessary gear, and they happily teach newbies fishing basics.
North Star II Fishing & Charter Boat's crew has learned to analyze the weather, tides, and times of day to deduce when fish will come out of hiding. To supplement their instincts, the crew also gleans wisdom from a fish-detecting GPS radar and a local grizzly bear. The company's fiberglass-coated Northstar 2 meets the standards of the USCG's annual inspections, and can accommodate up to 100 passengers on each chartered trip. Extensive seating options and a sound system with Sirius radio make fishing trips comfortable. The company's newest vessel, Nautic Star, fosters a more intimate brand of fish-storytelling on its 40-person capacity boat. Fluke, flounder, bass, and live eels are among the species hauled in from the deep, whether by fishing line or polite invitations to hop onboard.
If Captains Bill Griswold and Bobby Tambascio didn't have Hoox It Charters, they'd still be out on the water trying to hook the big one. Fortunately for fishermen and hungry grizzly bears, the duo does have a spiffy 46-foot Super Sport yacht for chartering fishing trips. They can search for striped bass, bluefish, and fluke inshore, or venture to the Atlantic for shark, marlin, and swordfish.
The Boat Locker, founded in 1957, continues to furnish all manners of outdoor activities with boats and boating gear alongside an extensive stock of snowboards, standup paddleboards, and accessories. Careen across wintry slopes or down carpeted escalators atop a selection of Arbor snowboards ($299+) while outfitted in Burton boots, binding, and apparel ($20+). Standup paddleboards ($799+) surf down shores while sets of Anon goggles ($65+) shield eyes from chilly mountain breezes. The protective lenses of pairs of Kaenon, Maui Jim, Oakley and Gill sunglasses ($70+) safeguard wearers’ mugs against harsh elements when snowboarding or after accidentally falling face-first into the office koi pond.
Every summer, Angler Fishing Fleet's Captain Ken welcomes youngsters aboard his fishing boat for a weeklong fishing camp. He schools campers in fishing techniques, conservation, and boat safety in a demonstration of the company’s initiatives to empower budding fishermen in exploring local waters. In addition to camps, staff captains host frequent lectures that cover subjects such as anchoring techniques, bait, and which fish are the likeliest to grant wishes.
On private charters, the crew seeks schools with onboard sonar equipment and supplies passengers with fishing gear and bait. The Angler II ferries up to 39 passengers on fishing trips in the western Long Island Sound. It is a 50-foot Coast Guard–inspected vessel. The sleek Angler III, another 50-foot Coast Guard–inspected vessel, also escorts passengers through the sound, but it can hold up to 49 passengers and includes a cozy cabin with a galley that serves snacks and beverages. Plus, it offers both indoor and outdoor seating. The smallest member of the fleet, the Angler Express, is designed to hold up to six passengers on private charters. All three vessels in the fleet are equipped with state-of-the-art safety and fish-finding equipment.
Atlantic Outfitters facilitates maritime excursions with its stable of paddle-propelled vessels. From the fiberglass-ensconced safety of two sleek kayaks, or from the commanding view afforded by two standup paddleboards, seafaring friends can spend two hours exploring the watery expanses, tributaries, and wooded shorelines of the pristine Manhasset Bay. During the journey, paddlers can picnic on the open water, use their feet as anchors in the shallows along sandy beaches, or reenact favorite scenes from a documentary about waterfowl. Numerous kayak launch sites along the coast provide easy access to the bay.