Albie and bonito fishing from Woods Hole to the Maritime Academy is a matter of finding the largest concentrations of bait, which often hold at the entrances to spots such as West Falmouth, Monument Beach/Phinney’s Harbor, and Onset, as well as up inside the cove like bodies of water such as Old Silver Beach, Megansett, and Pocasset, where they are occasionally found feeding in tight to the beaches.
Of course, as Mike Thomas at M & D’s in Wareham said, the challenge is that the funny fish are often feeding in the same area as the many schools of small bluefish; that was what I found on Wednesday when I visited the Scraggy Neck area. There were definitely small schools of albies around, but the bluefish concentrations far outnumbered them. I suspect that first light fishing is best, but even when the albies apparently disappeared, folks who patiently kept casting were rewarded with occasional hook-ups, especially on spin tackle.
Concentrating on the rocky “necks” where the funny fish can corral the bait up is another effective technique; it’s very important to keep casting if you are confident in what direction the fish are moving after one of their surface shows tails off.
Another productive stretch of water for albies is the edges of the Canal from Stony Point Dike to Cleveland Ledge; these waters are particularly tide dependent, but a general rule of thumb is that there is a spurt of activity right after slack tide on the current change.
Capt. Alex Gottlieb of northsidecharters.com braved the snotty weather on Monday and managed to put a good day together by staying in tight from Onset to Monument Beach. There were big schools of bass on top and they took spook style plugs with abandon; as Alex explained, they would catch a half dozen or so 22 to 26-inch bass and then pull out something larger. There were some blues mixed in and they saw three schools of albies, but he suspects that if he had been able to get farther down the bay towards Falmouth, he would have found more funny fish.
Jim Young at Eastman’s Sport & Tackle on Main Street in Falmouth said there have been some really good surface bass feeds from Quissett to West Falmouth; typically, these fish are on the thick schools of peanut bunker, which can make them tough to catch. There is also no lack of small bass up inside the myriad protected waters from Falmouth to Bourne; both early morning and dusk are prime times, as well as low light, rainy conditions such as we have had this week.