Paul Newmier down at Blackbeard’s in Eastham pointed out the obvious: no boats have managed to get out in these nasty winds.
Prior to that, a few of the Rock Harbor boats continued to pick away at small bass around Billingsgate using jigs on wire line, but many of them are staying closer to home and trolling the tube-and-worm around the Brewster Flats down to Sesuit.
Paul told me that his friend who charters out of Wellfleet Harbor has pulled his boat for the season as fishing and the weather had become pretty unreliable; even the bluefish that typically can be found up around the Path have been hit-or-miss over the last several weeks.
I would have thought that some schools of blues would have found the large number of pogies up inside Wellfleet Harbor, but that hasn’t been the case. They have been so thick that a couple told Paul that they ran into schools of what they thought were bass or blues and couldn’t get them to hit anything they threw; Paul asked them how they were schooling and swimming and from their description they were obviously dealing with pogies.
Elise Costa over at The Powderhorn in Hyannis said that her dad’s boat, on which she is often the mate, continues to sail out of Rock Harbor and is catching fish for its charters. She said that Billingsgate has been dead for quite a while, but they are using a mix of techniques to put folks on bass and blues; three methods you will see the Rock Harbor boats often employ include jigging wire, trolling umbrella rigs, and trolling the tube-and-worm, but many of them also pull Hootchies when there are bluefish around.
Elise also said that Barnstable always holds fish, although they can often been on the small side, and that should be the case once things settle down and the water has a couple of days to clear. Early mornings in the fall are great for casting to breaking fish, whether with plugs, soft plastics, or flies; if the fish aren’t on top, drifting the edges of the shallows to the east and west will often produce smaller bass, with larger fish holding more to the middle of the entrance channel. The water is still warm up on the flats and it should be possible to do quite well sight casting with offerings that imitate sand eels and crabs. That said, a caveat is what the storm has done to the fish in terms of moving them out into the bay or deeper into B-Harbor.
Ben Clabault from Forestdale Bait & Tackle on Route 130 told me an angler who frequents their shop was doing well up around the Sandwich creeks throwing topwater plugs such as Zara Spooks as well as soft plastics. Towards dusk, the fish were mainly schoolies in the 24 to 30-inch range, but on those trips where he stayed after dark, he picked up the occasional larger bass up to 38-inches.