June 2012 Daily Fishing Reports
Saturday, June 30: Chatham
Not Good!High hopes with Gerry Fine and Joe Marcus turned sour as we motored out of Stage Harbor at 4 AM; no problem idling to the entrance, but when we tried to get up on plane, there was definitely a problem with the Honda. Checked the prop for obstructions, but nothing found. Water separator filter looked fine and there appeared to be no problem with primer bulb, but no get up and go. Idling back to the ramp was just fine and when we put the boat back on the trailer to look under the motor cover, the fuel filter looked fine. So, with apologies to Gerry and Joe, we made the call the Capt. Warren Marshall who went above and beyond the call, agreeing to pick them up at Saquatucket to save their day. As for me, Jen Griswold at The Boat Guy told me to come right in. A quick analysis confirmed a stumble at high rpm's, so Andy Bancroft, the man himself, changed plugs and filters. The motor ran fine for him, which is good enough for me. Ultimately, the problem appears to be bad gas from the convenience store where I have been going due to price. Andy has warned me about buying fuel at reputable stations and I will listen from now on - I promise!
Thursday, June 28: Woods Hole and The Elizabeths
What Summer Can BeSpent a perfect day on the water with Peter Maher and his grandson, Xander (short for Alexander) Peterson. A few small bass were popping about Nobska, but the Hole was loaded with bass both big and small. Finally dialed in with the amber seven-inch and six-inch Hogy's. Finished up with big schools of tough bluefish in Buzzards Bay, one of which managed to break a stainless Siwash hook. Changing over to VMC 4X strong as we speak.
Wednesday, June 27: Off The Water
A Summer BreezeAnd that means gusts to 25 southwest, causing even the bigger boats to take lay day. For me it meant re-rigging plugs, tying flies, and just catching up on some rest.
Tuesday, June 26: Chatham
Memories That Will LastWhat a morning on the water with Mark Tenerowicz; on at 5 AM and off by 10:30 AM, with non-stop action around Monomoy. Started with tossing plugs at acres of bluefish swarming sand eels before hitting the Point. The bass absolutely went nuts over the new 10-inch bubblegum floating Hogy, as well as the amber 7-inch and finally the 10-inch bubblegum original. The final offering accounted for the fish of the trip towards slack tide as Mark did a great job dead drifting the Hogy when it was inhaled by a bass that I estimated was about 48-inches and 40-pounds. Bearses finally set up and every time Mark worked one of Joe Marcus's plugs into the second or third wave, a big bass just inhaled it. Words hardly do it justice. We also saw one of the most interesting things we have seen on the water: at slack tide, huge bass were harassing sea robins on the surface; at times, the robins had their heads out of the water as they were pushed around. Twitching a small orange/white plug brought on some hellacious hits, with big fish at one point just frothing on the surface. Weather was also interesting; warm and a bit breezy on the way out, then a dark cloud bank and front moved through, dropping the temperature noticeably and bring a strange calm. Finally, the wind kicked up a bit as we headed home. At least we missed the water spouts in the afternoon!
Sunday, June 24: Cape Cod Bay
A Glorious Day On The WaterIt promised to be a good day on the water with Sandy Reid and Laurie Thwaites on board, two ladies who really love to fish. We started on the flats around Barnstable and found birds and some schoolies on the fly and soft plastics, but eventually as the tide slacked the bluefish showed up. The wind was once again west/northwest, producing some chop on the water, but we headed for Billingsgate and were rewarded with some nice surface feeding bass. In some ways, it looked like a mini-Montauk moment, as Laurie said, but perhaps because of the rough water or slow tide, the fish didn't stay up as long as I would have liked. Then again, having numerous boats charge at them wasn't a great thing either. We worked edges back at Barnstable that had produced many small bass the day before, but the tide really hadn't picked up and there were a ton of boats around, so we called it an early day. The sunshine was wonderful and the company even better - what else could a captain ask for?
Saturday, June 23: Cape Cod Bay
Little Fish, Big Fish, One Fish, Two FishWhat an interesting day it was today, in terms of fishing and weather. I had the pleasure of fishing once again with Jon Kolb, who brought along his friend, Mark Biddle, who had never fly fished in the salt before. We found fish popping along the channel in Barnstable and picked up a few small bass along west bar before moving over to the east flats. Things were kind of quiet, but Jon did manage to pick up a solid fish blind casting on the last of the outgoing. It was quiet overall, so given that it was quite calm, I made the run to Billingsgate where we came upon some impressive schools of surface feeding bass. Both Mark and Jon caught what I would classify as impressive bass, at which point the wind picked up and we ran to back to B-Harbor. Any attempt to work the flats was impossible as there were big rollers coming in, obviously kicked up by the increasing wind, so we worked inside the harbor along west bar and connected with numerous very small schoolies. The wind seemed to blow itself out, so it was back east where there were just an incredible amount of small fish slurping and slapping. The rollers were smaller, but it was still sloppy, and despite the conditions, Jon and Mark continued to pick up pre-schoolies on sand eel Clousers and even Crease flies. Oh, and the sun came out and running back to the ramp was like cruising across the flats in the Bahamas.
Friday, June 22: Chatham
Just Stupendous!I'm not sure it was possible, but today was even better than yesterday in terms of fishing, and I can't imagine two better people to share it with than Joe Marcus and Gerry Fine. Lot more boats, to the point where folks were running on top of each other, but for the most part we were able to pick our own spots in the rips and the fish really cooperated. In all honesty, it was definitely the best day of fly fishing for really big bass that I have ever experienced. I don't measure fish or weigh them, but check out the photos and I think you will be impressed. I'm still almost speechless at the sight of so many big fishing charging the fly - and as you know, I am never at a loss for words!
Thursday, June 21: Chatham
Chatham, Oh My Chatham!After hearing about all the action down Monomoy way, Paul Valint joined me for my first trip thataway this season and was it ever worth it!. After picking up grilled muffins at Larry's PX, we headed south and found several boats already hooked up. We joined in and Paul began to work his magic with the PVEP squid fly, but soon everyone left where we were fishing, apparently for more well known rips. We were all by ourselves and continued to either get whacked by two or three bass on every cast or get a hookup. These were fantastic fish, with only one falling below the "really good class", based on my uneducated eye (no, I did not measure a single fish!). Even after the tide changed to the direction I have not found to be as productive at the rips we were fishing, Paul kept catching, including what he said was the largest striper he has caught on the fly. I suspect one of his first questions next year will be, "What's going on in Chatham?".
Wednesday, June 20: Barnstable Harbor and Cape Cod Bay
Can't Do Much BetterSummer arrived today with plenty of sun and heat, but the bass didn't seem to mind as Steve McCarthy and Barbara Russell found plenty of cooperative fish from Barnstable to Provincetown. Last year, Steve lost a big fish on the Brewster Flats due to captain's error as I failed to explain what "clear the line" means. Steve had only done flyrodding for trout and had never put a fish on the reel, so when his big striper took the fly, thrashed on the surface, and then started to run, he held on for dear life. You can probably figure out what happened to the 12 pound tippet. No such issues today as he had plenty of practice on schoolies and some bigger fish as well, while Barbara did very well with soft plastics of various colors. On a down note, a lot of running and gunning out there; I don't know what it is about fish on top and birds that has people losing their minds. Not only do they put the fish down, but the wake has everyone rocking and rolling. Seems like it's a carryover from the way folks drive in Massachusetts.
Tuesday, June 19: Barnstable Harbor
Just A Really Good DayWhat a pleasure it was today fishing with a true gentleman and an outstanding flyrodder as I welcomed Herb Ladenheim aboard the Katie G. Even better was the fact the fish really cooperated as they were gorging on sand eels. Plenty of birds and noisy fish throughout the morning, and even the wind waited until we were done. All of the fish were caught on Herb's sand eel Clouser, a perfect, sparse tie, as well as on rods that he builds himself!
Monday, June 18: Barnstable Harbor
Fish City!It had been a long time since I fished with George Nelson, but today he brought along two eager anglers, his son-in-law Jeff Williams and Jeff's cousin, Ron Bowles. Neither of them had ever caught a striper and I had some concerns since the wind was still out of the east/northeast and reports had told of slow fishing recently. We had some swirls on the flats as we found some good pods of bait, but no hook-ups. But as the tide picked up, the schoolies arrived in full force and it was non-stop action on Sluggo's, mainly white and bubblegum.
Monday, June 18: Barnstable Harbor
Fish City!It had been a long time since I fished with George Nelson, but today he brought along two eager anglers, his son-in-law Jeff Williams and Jeff's cousin, Ron Bowles. Neither of them had ever caught a striper and I had some concerns since the wind was still out of the east/northeast and reports had told of slow fishing recently. We had some swirls on the flats as we found some good pods of bait, but no hook-ups. But as the tide picked up, the schoolies arrived in full force and it was non-stop action on Sluggo's, mainly white and bubblegum fished both unweighted and on light jigheads.
Sunday, June 17: Popponesset
Father's Day ChoresI elected to take the day off and ended up taking care of things at my folks' house, as well as celebrating Father's Day with mine. Even though I didn't get to tie any bugs as I was hoping to, I did have enough time to change hooks on some plugs that sorely needed attention. Thanks to Gerrit Frase, who is a huge believer in flat wings, I now have the bug. Fortunately, over the years I have collected a good number of flat wing necks since long feathers are almost impossible to come by these days.
Saturday, June 16: Home Base
Ouch!A combination of continued strong winds from the northeast and my sciatica acting up a bit had me canceling with Gerry Fine, something I hate to do. Fortunately, we were able to reschedule for next week. But as for my derriere, I suspect it is getting even since I am well known for being a pain in the butt, giving a bad name to gluteus maximi everywhere!
Friday, June 15: Woods Holes and The Islands
When Will This Easterly Stuff Go Away?It didn't take long for the wind to come up from the northeast, but that didn't deter Paul Valint and Rich Wilburn from coming aboard to search for fish. Paul started out with the fly and Dan the spin, and they both managed a couple of schoolies. But once the tide turned, both anglers went to the spin and had fish blowing up Yo-zuri Hydro Pencils with reckless abandon. At one point Paul let out a holler as he pointed to a really big bass that followed the plug, but elected not to eat. I guess that's why they get big. The wind kept building, but we hit the Hole where Paul hooked up twice despite the conditions. There were a few fish popping around, but they were fussy, chasing very small squid. They even refused the PVEP as Paul swung it through spots where they had to be holding. I later heard from Capt. Warren Marshall that the fly that finally worked was the Schminnow - a renowned snook pattern!
Thursday, June 14: Woods Hole
The Return of the PVEPAnd its creator, Paul Valint, someone who really enjoys fishing. Paul had a guest along for the first time, Rich Wilburn, and while Paul worked his magic with his squid pattern that we named years ago the PVEP, Dan showed his touch with Hogy's. When it seemed the fish wanted something smaller and white, we turned to Zoom Super Flukes on jigheads that helped deal with the current. It seems like the Hole is starting to slow in terms of larger bass chasing squid and I wonder when we will see resident fish pushing small baits like sand eels, sea herring, and butterfish.
Thursday, June 14: The Islands
Blowing A Woofer!A strong wind out of the northwest had me wondering whether we would get out today, but Gerrit Frase and Dave Neslson gutted it out. We made a run down what should have been the lee side, but the gusts were so strong we couldn't escape. I made it as far as Nashawena hoping to get some protection, but the wind laughed at my nerve. We did find a few spots where we could fish and a couple of schoolies cooperated. I had high hopes for Tarpaulin, but got no love. Finally, the wind subsided as the sun set and we hit the Hole, but the bass didn't get the message. We did manage a couple of good-sized bluefish, the first I have encountered this year in the Hole - and with no loss of flies on 16 pound tippet.
Wednesday, June 13: Woods Hole
A Real Good FishThe task today was to show Dave Nelson, a Colorado flyrodder, what stripers are about and the Hole really cooperated for Dave and his host, local Gerrit Frase. It has rained heavily and blown all day, canceling my morning trip, but when we finally hit the water at 5 PM, the drizzle stopped and the wind settled, making for a great evening of coaxing bass to take squid flies. Most of the fish were strong, decent schoolies, but we ended the night with Dave connecting with a very nice bass that used all the tricks in the book before succumbing.
Tuesday, June 12: Barnstable and Billingsgate
Shut Off and Turn OnA good outgoing tide had some fish popping in Barnstable as Al Moulton and Bob Davis joined me for day two on the water - and the wind wasn't too bad. But the fish shut down and got grumpy really fast, sulking on the bottom where we couldn't get them to eat. So despite the possibility of a lumpy ride home, we headed for Billingsgate where we were treated to surface feeding bass - and the pleasure of watching other boats charge off after birds while we waited around and the fish came back up right beside us. Highlight of the day was Bob's largest bass on the fly to date, made even more interesting by a tangle that shot out through the guides that we managed to undo without losing the fish. And, yes, it was a bit lumpy getting home.
Monday, June 11: Woods Hole
Day One With Wind - What Else!Today was day one with another regular duo, those characters Al Moulton and Bob Davis. Whenever we fish, there is always wind and usually at least one blowout. Well, today the wind wasn't so bad that we were able to fish the Hole and the gents took turns using the fly rod to pick up a number of bass that really put on a show. I give both guys credit for dealing with southeast breezes that worked in off their casting arm, a challenge no matter how good a caster you are. We also put the spinning to good use with Hogy's also accounting for some happy fish.
Sunday, June 10: Woods Hole and The Elizabeths
I Thought It Was Father's Day?Today I got together with Mark and Daniel Roberts for what I thought was a Father's Day trip - but I was a week early! Seems I can't keep track of time very well these days. Anyway, we started in the Hole where we found some good sized bass willing to chew on amber 10-inch original Hogy's. When the tide slacked, I made the run to Cuttyhunk for what I thought would be a bass producing tide, but we only encountering small bluefish that were more than willing to take a whack at Rebel Jumpin' Minnows. The offer was taken to leave these fish and search for something bigger, but other than a fish here and there, the islands were surprisingly dead.
Sunday, June 10: The Islands
A Perfect EveningAfter my morning trip, I managed to get together with Ellen Silbergeld for some flyrodding down the islands. We hit a nice little spot where we were out of the wind and Ellen picked up a number of schoolies. A visit to Robinson's for the turn produced nothing, so it was back to the honey hole where picked up a very nice fish as the sun was going down. All in all, a great afternoon of fishing.
Saturday, June 9: Barnstable and The Elizabeths
The Old SwitcherooSo what do you do when the wind blows hard on one side of the Cape? Why, just put the boat on the trailer and move! That's exactly what I did with Ray Riley and Arnold Cosgrove today. We hit Barnstable for the early morning tide and there were some fish around, but not the way it had been. And then the wind kicked up. So it was off to Woods Hole where we re-launched and the islands for some more bass, with one drift off of Naushon producing an incredible number of small fish on chartreuse Deceivers.
Friday, June 8: Cape Cod Bay
The Fish Gods Smile AgainIt was day two with Ray and Steve and we elected to revisit Barnstable, where we first started fishing together ten years ago. The thick fog kept some smaller boats from launching, but we slowly made our way out the channel and boy were we ever rewarded. It was a blitz of bass for a couple of hours straight, starting with some really nice fish and ending up with a good sign for the future -lots of smaller schoolies. It was possible to close your eyes and find the fish just by the racket they were making. When the tide died, and having heard that Billingsgate was hot, I headed that way. Some larger charter boats were trolling around, but in the fog I just didn't feel like searching for a needle in a haystack, so I elected to head for Provincetown where the structure is more definitive. A few fish were popping, but the tide was dying and it was apparent from everyone moving this and that way the search was on. Hoping that we would find some topwater action on the tide at Billingsgate and some sunshine as well, we worked our way back and the skies cleared, but the fish never really cooperated. There were plenty of sand eels around and a handful of other boats waving the long wand, but dredging with fast sink lines to no avail got boring fast. The final leg of our adventure took us back to Barnstable where there were some really impressive schools of surface feeding stripers, only this time they were frolicking in the sun. As fun as the fish were in the fog, I can never get enough of watching bass swirling and chasing flies in gin clear water.
Thursday, June 7: Woods Hole and The Elizabeths
Wouldn't You Know It?I finally get back on the water and who is in town? Those two wise guys from Connecticut, Steve Sawzcuk and Ray Riley; they informed this was our tenth anniversary, meaning they have put up with me for that long on the first Thursday and Friday of June over a decade. And then they show up, the fishing just percolates, and such was the case today. It started with some decent fish in the Hole on fast sink lines and Capt. Ray Stachelek's Squidsicle flies, but by then it was time to run down the islands. Despite the fog, we came up with big schools of surface feeding bass that were just slamming sand eels and like our Clouser imitations just fine. Eventually, the fog lifted, some layers of clothing came off, and we picked small fish during a wonderful drift along Naushon on chartreuse Deceivers. Oh, and did I forget to mention? It was almost flat calm all day. Amazing.
Sunday, June 3: Woods Hole and The Elizabeths
Like Old TimesThey blew the forecast with calm seas this morning, which had me questioning my decision to cancel my morning trip, but it was still rainy and a bit miserable. Things looked a bit brighter later on, so I hooked up with my nephew Frank to check out the Hole. The end of the east was dead, so we plugged down to Robinson's with no luck. The opposite tide in the Hole wasn't much better, although Frank showed that he still hasn't lost his touch by picking up two bass and getting others to hit out of what looked like an empty ocean.
Saturday, June 2: On The Road
A Day For Checking InWith sheets of rain and heavy winds the norm for today, it was no go for the water so I took to the asphalt with Ruby and we visited tackle shops from Orleans to Barnstable. I am a tackle shop addict and can't get enough of looking at all the great equipment there is on the market, which means my credit card balance went up as I couldn't resist picking up a few things. Even better is seeing folks I haven't seen in a while, including Mike and Sean at the Goose, along with Mike's German shepherd puppy, Bear. I had the good fortune of meeting Andy Little at The Powderhorn; what a great guy who has incredible knowledge and insight into fishing. It was good to see folks shopping at Fishing The Cape, while Riverview Bait & Tackle had some lures I have been looking for. Finally, although not a tackle shop, I stopped in at Ryder's Cove Boatyard in Chatham. If you have not done business with Alan Cohen, you are missing out; he is one of the most professional and nicest people in the business. On top of that, I met new members of the family, Reynard and Chester, as Alan always has three dogs on board and usually in the shop, making it an extra cool place to stop.
Friday, June 1: Woods Hole and The Elizabeths
Another NWS BeautyThe weather forecast of light winds out of the east proved to be a joke today, but I still got the chance to fish with two of my favorite folks, Barney Keezell and Dana Wilson. The unfortunate part is that spots which produced so well yesterday were devoid of life, with a just a few bass popping on small bait and they would not take surface lures. Small jigheads and soft plastics produced a few schoolies, so we moved on down towards Cuttyhunk, but before making it there, we ran into big schools of nice sized bluefish that were just what Barney and Dana wanted for the smoker and the grill. The winds continued to build, so it was off to the Hole where the action wasn't red hot, but we did managed some bass that seemed much fussier today, with a lot more really small squid in the mix. They wouldn't touch plugs, so it was switching around between sizes and colors of Hogy's that ultimately turned the trick.
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Captain Dave Peros
P.O. Box 3001
Pocasset, MA 02559