Hi Folks !
Its been a great summer to date, with many, many happy fishing families enjoying what our outer Cape area has to offer. The waters to the east of Chatham are teeming with the baitfish species of menhaden, mackerel and sand eels, attracting vast schools of striped bass, bluefish and bluefin tuna. Granted some days are better than others, but all in all we have it pretty good here on the Cape and I feel lucky to be a part of it. It makes me happy to have a job that provides enjoyment to others.
With all of the great fishing we have, demand is high for folks to get on the water. My phone is ringing constantly thought the day while I'm guiding others on their charters. I very rarely will answer the phone when I am working for a client, so I listen to the voicemails when I get onshore and in my truck. Eighty percent of these calls are folks looking to go fishing on very short notice, generally either that day or the next day only. Since I don't have openings in my reservations book I don't call them back. It may seem impolite, but I just don't have the extra hour at the end of a day to speak with all of those that failed to plan ahead and I can’t be of service to. Please, in the future, try to reserve a date for fishing when you reserve your lodging for your vacation. Many of my regular customers reserve in January, February and into the late spring in anticipation of getting a date with us.
Current openings are as follows: August 28 @ 7:30 am for 5 hours, then again @ 12:45 pm for 5 hours. September 6 @ 8 am for 5 hours. September 10, 11, 12, 13 and 20 open for full day or two half day trips. September 26 into mid October open for tuna fishing 10-12 hour trips and commercial fishing for tuna only.
The striped bass have been scattered from the C buoy in Chatham all the way down to Bearse’s shoals, both in the rips and in the flat water. The diamond jigs are working in the flat water, as well as trolled swimming plugs such as Sebiles or mackerel patterns. In the rips, we catch them with shell squids or Yozuri Squirts in various colors. I haven't done much with sand eels this year because they are hard to get and the trolled lures have been working well. I believe it is due to the large amounts of mackerel that are in our area this year.
The bluefin tuna have shown up in a BIG way too, as the fish we were catching up until a week ago were all in the big 80 to 90 inch range. My last 3 charters all caught fish of this size, and they were sold as per NMFS regulations applying to charter boats. My policy is when we catch salable bluefin, is to give one third of the proceeds back to the charter, after expenses. Prices paid for these fish are not what you see on TV. The last 3 fish sold went for $6.25, 6.00, and $4.50 per pound respectively. I send a copy of the sales slip, tuna check and expenses to each customer with their check from me. That is just how I have done it on my boat and that is how I do it when I target them commercially. Here is what my last customer had to say about it : “Hi Bruce - got the check today. Thanks again for the trip and the check. I really appreciate your time and the way you run your business. We will be in touch to get something booked for next year. Take Care, Dustin”
Im glad he left happy, as my job is to ensure, to the best of my ability, that folks come back with me year after year. NMFS has recently closed the “trophy” category for recreational tuna fishing. Any fish over 73” must be released in a manner that does not harm the fish. The current regulation is that while fishing on a charter boat, you can take TWO bluefin between 27” and 47”, AND ONE bluefin between 47’ and 73”. Most of these fish are in the medium size ranges of 50” to 75” , so the TWO 27” to 47” fish aren't likely to be caught. That said, a medium bluefin tuna of 68” to 73” is about 200 pounds of ass kicking tuna fish, once you try to real one in and you had better bring a big enough cooler to take your fish loins home when you come !
Thanks very much and Good Fishing to you,
Captain Bruce & f/v “Marilyn S”