Greetings from Baymen & Capt. Dave!
The NE is behind us for now and we finally got back on the bay. Last night, a wicked storm and the last of the front finally pushed out to sea. Torrential rains, thunder and lightning for much of the night.
Today, I had repeat client Greg Sanchez on board for fly fishing striped bass. At first light, rain. No surprise. But it soon ended and we headed out in search of striped bass.
We found several small pockets of bass scattered around the bay, all of them with a handful of birds working overhead. Our first school of fish held pretty well and we got several drifts through them. They were a little spooky of the boat and would horseshoe around us as is common in the fall run. We also had the wicked North winds kick up again for a while and Greg had to battle non-stop chop while casting and fighting fish.
We eventually decided to run up bay to get out of the chop and wind and we found what we had hoped for: calm seas and some schools of bass. What a contrast to out front. It was like a mill pond and a joy to watch Greg cast and hook into fish.
We moved around the calm waters fishing two different schools of fish about a half-mile apart. We also saw some hickory shad and hooked into a few but they threw the hooks with their paper mouths. We had a nice 30″ inch bass running alongside a hooked bass. We also saw a very big fish pushing water off our stern. At least in the mid-thirties, probably bigger. We made several drifts over the area and never saw him again. He may have been feeding on the hickory shad…
We drove down bay and all the way up into the Back River in hopes of finding fish. Nobody home so we headed for the mouth of the Bluefish for a look around and also fished Long Point. I saw one fish break topwater but that was it.
The bass today were finicky and skittish of the boat at times. Add in the North wind and it made setting drifts a little difficult. The bait were those very tiny thumbnail size peanut bunker. No sign of the big 3″-4″ peanut bunker that were everywhere before the big NE blow. We did see what looked liked mumachogs or more likeley, 2″-3″ silversides schooled up along a bank.
No sign of seals today and no sharks. But I have talked with two people that reported recent sightings and a third possible sighting. I have not seen any since the one I reported to the harbormaster off the front beach at the second crossover a couple months ago. That said, the biggest Great White I ever saw was in October one year off Plum Hills. That monster was chasing seals and it was the length of my skiff. I also saw one at the Power Plant one fall morning many years back, plowing through bluefish. It looked like a runaway train. It was both stunning and awesome to see that kind of power up close. All this said, I have yet to see a GW inside the bay this season but I am sure they come in and out with the tides like everything else and go unnoticed. It is only a matter of time…
Back to today’s Baymen Report: we landed and released 13 striped bass on the fly and dropped just as many. A lot of “hit and spits” today. Top flies were a Greg Sanchez Deceiver, a Mike Rice peanut bunker, and a white hollow deer hair deceiver-type pattern also tied by Greg. It looked pretty awesome in the water and accounted for several of our fish. A side note – Greg ties all his fly patterns on circle hooks and every single bass he landed was hooked in the front left top lip. None were hooked in the right side of the mouth.
That’s today’s Baymen Report. Eight days left and my 2022 striped bass charter season comes to an end. Still lots of fishing ahead. STAY POSTED:
Capt. David Bitters, BAYMEN, www.baymenlife.com Fly Fishing & Light Tackle Striped Bass on the Massachusetts Coast. 30 Years Guiding The Bay. Now Booking 2023 & 2024 Seasons. Dates Go Quickly. Don’t wait.