Hi Folks !
Frequent days of rain and wind is usually standard for June. The 3 day windows of brilliant cloudless sunshine that you can get out fishing are wedged in between two and three day windows of wind and rain. These sunny days are like grow lights in a greenhouse, stimulating growth and warming our marine waters. With every degree of temperature increase in our ocean waters more fish are moving into the area. I went out to put in my lobster pots late yesterday afternoon and i had bait on the color sounder screen in much of the areas to the east of the drop off outside Chatham Harbor. My water temperature was 54.5 degrees on the north tide, a full 4 degrees warmer than when we caught our last bluefin tuna.
The stripers are in Nantucket sound fairly heavily and soon will move around into the Rips of Monomoy. (for an article i wrote on this see:)
I have always used mid June as the start for this, but water temperature is key. Water temps are the primary factor to decent bass fishing. As the season begins Cape Cod Bay and Nantucket Sound and Martha’s Vineyard get to have first dibs on the great striper fishing. But by mid summer when these areas have water temps soaring to above 65 and even 70 degrees, the stripers move out and deeper to colder waters, leaving anglers with only bluefish to catch. We fishers from Chatham and the backside of the Cape, are blessed with colder waters, and although we start late, we have cooler waters and therefore, excellent bass fishing from mid June well into October. Its no wonder that most of Massachusetts 1 milllion pounds of commercial striped bass quota is caught from Chatham’s waters !
As the stripers move around the tip of Monomoy, and into the rips at Bearse’s, Handkerchief, and Stonehorse Shoals, they feed heavily on squid. Look for rips that have current flowing from the deep side over the gravel bars into the shallower water. Watch for gulls flying over the rips, as they are looking for a squid being chased to the surface by feeding bass. Here is a link to a video of what you can expect at the Rips of Monomoy using the right combination of tackle and bait.
Meanwhile, large and medium.Bluefin Tuna are also just a couple miles east of Chatham’s waters also feeding on the sand eels, herring, mackerel and squid. Our first trip of the season we had a 220 pound bluefin landed and had two other bites of equally large fish, just 6 miles from my harbor. We head out again tomorrow, and then Saturday morning for bluefin charters, so stay tuned as the fishing has been spectacular. A friend of mine, Andrew caught a 79” fish weighing 240 pounds last week trolling a ballyhoo from a Maritime skiff. He sold the fish for $10 a pound. My friend Mike had a fish on for 5 hours before losing it ! He estimates that fish was close to 500 pounds.
I have been receiving multiple calls and emails regarding booking trips and dates each day. When someone calls to ask about availability I tell them what days are open and the times. Then as they take a few days to think about it and check with all the members of the party, other folks have also asked about the same weeks or days. Then, by the time you get back to me, days or usually weeks later, the original days you asked about are booked with someone else. Try to do your best about minimizing the delays between when you inquire about dates and when you commit to making the reservation. Check the archive of fishing reports for the one about tides to find out about when there are certain tides better than others. http://www.sportfishingcapecod.com/reports/2013/2013-Best-Tide-Extremes
Then connect with the members of your group and make sure they are all on board with the date. Its a good idea to have a back up date in mind when you call. If all is good AND I am not booked that day, you can reserve your day with one phone call or email.
I hope to see you.
Bruce & “Marilyn S”