A few larger blues are being caught off of Chappy, but there definitely has not been a consistent afternoon/evening run that you can count on. A few larger bass are being caught on live eels at night or by boaters tossing them into the rocks along the north shore and around Gay Head. Bonito fishing continues to improve and a few king mackerel have been caught, but there have been albies reported yet.
Bonito have pretty much surrounded the island, along with lots of small bluefish. The largest concentration of bones is probably out around the Hooter and Paradise; trolling is very common in these waters due to the number of rips and large amount of water where the fish can be.
Steve Morris at Dick’s Bait & Tackle in Edgartown said the fish has been pretty tough around the island, especially for bass from shore. There has been a pick of fish at night along the north shore and around Gay Head, but the water is pretty warm and the only action is happening in the dark.
Shore anglers have been getting into some good-sized fish around Chappy, including East Beach and Wasque. A number of charterboats out of Oak Bluffs have been returning with smaller blues, mainly in the four to five-pound range. Some folks are picking at fluke and sea bass in the deeper waters off the west end of Middle Ground; check out Rick Fehon’s report on bass fishing around MG last weekend in the Sounds section for more information on these waters.
This time of year, you can expect to find striped bass, bluefish, sea bass, porgy and even fluke on the sandy shoals of Nantucket & Vineyard Sound. Learn how Capt. Mike approaches mixed-bag summertime fishing trips in this video shot before work in mid July on the 243 Everglades CC.
Some fish are being caught at Squibnocket by the Menemsha charterboats, mainly jigging wire and parachutes, as well as spoons, while Jim Young in Falmouth told me that he heard Wasque had slowed down. The bass fishing at Middle Ground has slowed significantly, with the vast majority of stripers having been pushed into deeper water by the increasing temperatures and the heavy boat traffic.
The word from Doug Asselin at Dick’s Bait & Tackle is that boat and people pressure on the island has increased exponentially, making spots such as Middle Ground virtually impossible to fish – unless you get there extra early or after most folks have headed home in their super center consoles.
Learning how to effectively fish rips from a boat is a critical skill for catching striped bass in Nantucket Sound. Learn boat positioning, casting and retrieve techniques from Capt. Mike Hogan in this video shot this week aboard the Everglades 243CC.
Bluefish are very scattered, with a few taken along East Beach by shore anglers, but much of the oversand activity has been curtailed due to the piping plovers. Black sea bass are still being caught in decent numbers, along with plenty of scup, around Hedge Fence and Squash Meadows.
As far as beach fishing goes, some folks who have special access to Squibnocket Beach did well during their recent vacation tossing topwater plugs, including a number of 26 to 30-inch bass, topped by a 38-incher. One interesting observation they offered is that unlike past years when pencil poppers were very productive, they only had half-hearted responses to them this year.