Capt. Dave’s 5/19/2022 Cape Cod Canal Fishing Report
West End Stripers
Every tide presents a new wave of fish! Silversides and herring seem to be the primary forage at the moment, but keep an eye out for a push of mackerel to appear in the Canal. As we know from prior seasons, once the mackerel make their way into the Canal, chaos is likely to ensue!
Cape Cod Canal Fishing Report
I decided to take a ride up to Bell Road this morning to see
for myself what is going on – apparently there has been a good slug of
stripers moving back and forth at the moment with the currents – and
there were certainly plenty of people at the west end and a some
impressive fish caught-and-released. It really didn’t seem to matter
what folks were using, with fish caught on white/pearl paddletails,
jointed white swimbaits, and pencil poppers, especially mackerel
patterns – although there haven’t been any macks reported in the Big
In fact, Bruce Miller at Canal Bait and Tackle in Sagamore said that
there aren’t any mackerel in the Canal that he has heard of and that the
pickings out in Cape Cod Bay are slim as well. Bruce believes the fish are
feeding on herring and silversides at the moment, with some pogies
and squid also being reported. The fish are definitely moving with the
current, as usual, with the end of the west and beginning of the turn to
the east – as it was this morning – producing best around the west end,
followed by action from the Cribbin’ to the herring run around mid-tide
and then the latter stages of the east bringing the bass to spots around
the east end.
Bruce added that while white has certainly been a productive color, he
has been selling a good number of pogy imitation paddletails and black
over silver or mackerel jointed swimbaits.
Cape Cod Canal Fishing Tip:
With many of today’s artificial lures, there is a tendency to
emphasize their productivity by simply casting them out and retrieving
them straight back. In other words, many of them have a “magical”
built-in action. I was reminded of that this morning when I watched
folks casting paddletails and jointed swimbaits and then reeling them in
without any rod action at all. In some cases, they caught fish, but I also
observed that the one angler who was consistently catching on his soft
plastic was subtly employing rod action. Changes in retrieve speed, rod
movement, and angle of attack are always worth taking into
consideration even with today’s lures.
Cape Cod Canal Conservation News:
It was good to see folks walking down the rip rap to the
water’s edge to release their fish while it was still wet and supported by
the water. If a photo was taken, it was by another angler and done
rapidly, as opposed to struggling to get a selfie. Good stuff.
Capt. Dave’s 5/13/2022 Cape Cod Canal Fishing Report
Filmed last Friday in Buzzard’s Bay
Fish are moving in daily! A search won’t take you long to find them… But a heads up, there’s some micro silversides around, so be ready to downsize you leaders and baits to crack the code if they are cranky!
Cape Cod Canal Fishing Report
Rates 1A this week, mainly it saw the first push of larger
bass this week, with a 43-incher topping the list, according to A.J. Coots
at Red Top in Buzzards Bay. That fish was caught on a larger, bone
colored walk-the-dog plug around the slack tide.
The bite was particularly good this morning, noted Jeff Miller of Canal
Bait and Tackle in Sagamore, with a mix of schoolies, slot fish, and even
a handful above the 28 to less than 35-inch limit. There is a good
amount of sizeable bait in the land cut, including pogies and herring, so
larger, multi-jointed subsurface plugs and paddletail jigs were the best
producers of larger fish. Generally speaking, soft plastics and small
plugs in the five-inch range are working on the schoolies.
The action has been best around the west end, although fish were
caught from there to the middle of the Ditch, which is no surprise,
really, as these fish are moving in from Buzzards Bay, which rates a solid
1B this week as we will discuss next.
The tautog bite also remains very strong in the Canal, with fish up to
the nine-pound class caught so far this season. One of the regulars at
Canal Bait said he was around the fishing pier this week where a trio of
hardy souls had the platform all to themselves in the wind and rain.
They were drifting their crabs right into and among the pilings where
the fish were holding, with a hook up requiring a fast response and strong, steady pull to dislodge the tog from the structure they love so
I will acknowledge right up front that I have been
struggling with this whole catch-and-release, keep ‘em wet ethic; when
I see someone holding a big bass on his or her lap while posing for a
photo, I can’t help thinking about how long that fish was out of the
water and how it was handled to get the proper “pose.” It’s the same
when folks talk about measuring a fish, either from boat or shore,
where dragging it up on the rip rap or up the sand shingle just might
ultimately lead to its demise, despite the old “but it swam right away.”