Fishing Report – The Angler Deep Sea Fishing Boat

The sun wasn’t even up when we started accumulating the stuff we needed to be at the dock behind the Angler on Talbot Street at 6:30 am for a 7 am departure.  With the anticipation of a great day on the water and the admonition that many “regulars” would get there extremely early to secure their spot in line, we had our car loaded to depart at 5:30 am.  We are only fifteen minutes from the Angler, so we got there well before 6.  We were probably the 15th cooler in line and the only one without fishing rods.  No worries, however, because the others waiting were friendly and very informative.  We were told that you could bring 2 fishing poles but that you could only have one in the water at any given time.  That way, the fishermen had no moment when a line wasn’t in the water – whether you got tangled up with the person next to you or you caught a fish that took some time to get off your pole.

Coolers in line at the dock just before sunrise.

Every person we met had been out with Captain Chris many times and couldn’t sing his praises enough.  We were told that the first coolers in line belonged to the “flounder pounders.”  More on that later.

Procedure Before you Leave

When 6:30 came, a small crowd was gathering around the door to the Angler Restaurant and Bar I asked our friendly neighbors in line and they said that when the Captain got there, he would open up the doors and give everybody boarding tickets.  My confirmation email had a scan code on it, but the Captain was able to find our names more easily and quickly handed us our tickets.  By the way, there were several people from Washington DC who had gotten up at 2 am to be one of the first to secure their coolers in line.  Others had had a lot of coffee to rouse themselves for the early departure and everybody was able to use the restaurant’s facilities before we left.

tickets for the Angler 10 hour fishing trip
You have to go into the office and give them your name to get your tickets. You have to be sure to have bought your tickets online first, however, because these trips sell out.


When we picked which cooler to take, we were thinking that if the three of us caught anywhere close to our daily limit, 15 Black Sea Bass over 13″ and 4 flounder over 16.5″, we would need a huge cooler.  We clearly didn’t know the process and had a crew member later call our cooler the grey coffin.  Our recommendation for next time would be to bring a smaller cooler on wheels.  What we didn’t realize is that you can ask the crew to clean your fish for you.  They are fast and efficient and for only $1.50 per Black Sea Bass and $3.00 for flounder, you can go home with fish ready to eat in plastic bags.  They are a lot easier to carry and you won’t be told that you brought a coffin aboard.

Here, a local who has been on the Angler fishing trips many times, waits to board. He and his son packed appropriately for the day and nobody called his cooler a coffin!


Departure at 7 am

When everybody had gotten their tickets and returned to their coolers, the Captain and crew started processing us.  One of our group had left her ticket in her jacket.  Rich told us to go ahead and get onboard and he would get it later.  Nothing was going to slow that line down.  


Leaving the Angler dock as the sun rises in Ocean City.
Leaving the Angler dock as the sun rises in Ocean City.
a quiet sea aboard the Angler
The sea was a calm as glass as we headed out for a day of fishing.


“Flounder Pounders”

The early risers who were to the dock before 5 chose the aft of the boat to set up their fishing operation. All of these fishermen had been on this trip before.

As we got onboard, the earliest ticket holders secured their spot along the transom at the aft.  This was clearly the preferred fishing location for the “regulars” who seemed to be targeting flounder, according to those with whom we spoke later.  We saw many flounder netted by the crew and brought aboard by these flounder pounders at the rear.  They all had their own rigs, some had suitcase-sized tackle boxes, and from what we could tell, they mostly caught their limit of flounder.

Headed Out to Sea

The sun rose round and red above the Angler’s roofline as we slipped from the dock. Rich came to our location knowing we had rented rods & reels. He dropped three in rod holders in front of us.  As we motored out through the inlet with a rising sun in front and the ferris wheels to our port side, the air was cool and the seas totally calm.  In fact, as I climbed to the deserted top deck to talk with the captain at the helm, the sea was so glassy that the dolphins swimming lazily nearby were easy to see.

rental rods and reels on the angler
These are the rods and reels they have ready for you if you rent them.

I entered the cabin and spoke with Captain Chris Mizurak and Steve, a mate, for a few moments as we headed out.  Chris told me that he had been captaining boats for 18 years.  The 8 hour fishing trip we were on would head out about 25 miles and look for black sea bass and flounder.  He said the best trips for catching fish are the longer trips: 3/4 day, 8 hour and 10 hour.  He has a drone which he flies off the boat when the rest of us are fishing and some of the descriptions he gave me of things he’s seen, and filmed, while out on the water were amazing.  He sent me the video he took from the drone last year of a humpback whale that played near the boat.  He also sent me videos of one of the leatherback turtles we saw yesterday as well as Leah pulling in two black sea bass as a one of the crew netted a flounder for another customer.

Flounder Bob

After about a half an hour, a man jumps up and starts to cut the squid into bait-sized pieces.  He went through many boxes of squid to fill one mud-bucket with bait.  He then scooped smaller pails full of bait for the fishermen on the boat.  I asked if he worked for the boat and he said that, no, he was a customer but he couldn’t stand not to work.  He told me to check-out #flounderbob to see some pictures from his trips aboard the Angler.  Several of the guys in these pictures were aboard yesterday.

Rich Gave us Instructions

Rich does everything. He is a mate on the Angler. He took our tickets, got us our rods and reels, taught us how to get the fish off the hooks quickly and easily, and showed us how to use the reels. He and the other mate, Stephen, help customers get lines untangled and the fish on-board throughout the day. Together with the Captain, they made the trip fabulous.

Rich came over to us and asked if we had any questions.  When we said we didn’t know much about the Penn reels that were on the poles, he gave us instruction.  He showed us the lever that released the tension on the line.  He said to keep your thumb on the reel as the line spooled out.  As soon as we felt the weight hit the bottom, we should immediately throw the lever to lock the reel.  He warned that if we didn’t keep our thumb on the line, it would hit the bottom and spool out quickly making a mess.   He handed us our container of bait and told us to make sure that the fish we caught were within the legal limits – marked on the side of the boat with tape.

Fished Until 1


We arrived at the first fishing grounds around 9 and were ready with our weights clear and our hooks baited.  When Captain Chris said to drop your lines, away they went – with our thumbs on the reels, of course.  I was a little afraid that I wouldn’t be able to tell when the weight hit the bottom, but it was easy.  I threw the lever and waited for the first bite.  I didn’t have to wait long.  I felt a fish bump the line a couple of times and then I felt a weight on the line.  These black sea bass don’t seem to fight, so when you start reeling, the line just feels heavier.  The water is so clear that you can see the fish spinning up as you reel them in.  You simply lift them over the railing, still on the hooks, where we measured them or a mate would tell you quickly whether the fish was too small or good to keep.  

Stephen helped us get this fish off the line and then held it for me so I could get a picture.
DNR had two representatives on the boat who asked if we wanted to participate in their survey. They asked us questions about what we were anticipating and then came back to measure all the fish and record our catch.
Black Sea Bass on the line
The black sea bass is a beautiful fish. Males have iridescent blue coloring on their heads and backs. Each is different, but all were amazing. The female fish were not as colorful.

You could hear some of the customers calling for Stephen or Rich by yelling, “Mate.”  That usually meant there was a big fish on the line that needed netting.  For the rest of us, we pulled the fish in without a net most of the time.  We would fish one spot and as soon as the Captain felt the fishing success rate had diminished, he would call for lines to come up. As soon as everybody got their lines out of the water, the captain would motor us to the next fishing area and announce that it was time to drop your lines again.

There was a team spirit aboard as neighboring fishermen would groan collectively as one of us lost a big fish.  Chris, who came with me, had two keeper sea bass on the line as they came out of the water.  The fish on the bottom hook was much larger.  As Chris reeled the line in above the water line, the bottom fish made a huge twisting move, dislodging the hook.  When he splashed back in the ocean, all the fishermen on the starboard side of the boat near us groaned in sympathy.  This happened again when Flounder Bob had a big flounder on the line and lost it at the boat.  I have always viewed losing a fish as the fish winning fair and square, but that doesn’t make it less painful if you were invested in the fight and were so close to a reward.

When Chris called for the last drift of the day, we were all shocked.  We couldn’t believe how fast the day had gone.

Successful Day

I caught a lot of small fish which I threw back before catching two keepers back to back.  I caught 5 keepers in all.  Leah caught 5 legal fish and Chris caught 10.  None of us caught any flounder.  The flounder pounders all brought their own rigs and had different bait and tackle for their intended fish.  We saw many of them limit out.

Flounder pounders brought home a lot of fish from yesterday’s successful trip.
Fishermen on the boat caught a lot of fish.
Leah was in our group and caught 5 keepers. Here she is with one of her fish.
Everybody was successful on this trip thanks to Captain Chris and mates, Stephen and Rich.
Two locals, a father and son, limited out with flounder yesterday. Congratulations!
One of the early risers ready to catch flounder brought home a lot of meat!

Headed Home – Tired and Happy

As we headed back to the dock, Stephen and Rich started cleaning fish.  The cost was only $1.50 per sea bass and $3 per flounder.  Patrons tipped the mates 20% as they left, thankful for a fun and productive day.

Rich and Stephen didn’t stop cleaning fish until well after we docked. In fact, they were still cleaning as we left the boat.  Luckily, only a few people with full coolers remained on board.



The rest of us relaxed and got our gear together.  I headed up to the top deck where I found very few people.  Leah and Chris joined me as did a few of our new friends who had shared their tips and information with us over the course of the day.

Leah and I relax on the top deck after a successful day fishing.
resting after limiting out aboard the Angler
A fisherman resting after limiting out on the Angler 8 hour fishing trip.

Just in Time for the Angler’s Fabulous Happy Hour

After returning to the dock with our overly large cooler filled with freshly caught fish, nicely cleaned and cut into fillets and tied in plastic bags, we realized that it was 4 pm.  The Angler has a happy hour from 3 – 6 where you can buy grouper fingers, steamed shrimp and drinks, two for the price of one.  Don’t be fooled when you order, though.  If you order one drink, you will get two.  We like to share an order so our drinks stay cold.

The covered deck is a great place to relax after a long day of fishing.
Grapefruit crushes at the Angler are the best in Ocean City.
Grouper fingers are a popular happy hour special at the Angler.
Order one goombay smash and you get two. Plan accordingly.





Ann has been with StateVentures since 1999. She moved from Annapolis to Berlin, MD to be closer to Ocean City. She splits her work week between the two locations to help clients and visitors get the best information and value out of our sites. She loves a camera and any excuse to use it.  Her kids are both grown and off adventuring.  Ann loves to travel with her kids and lives with her dog Marley when she's not in Virginia fishing.

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