Elizabeth Islands Fishing Report – July 10, 2015

A couple of pogy chunkers have been anchored up in the Hole and around towards Nobska on commercial days and they are picking at fish, but getting a limit has been a challenge. Woods Hole has been filled with smaller bass between 20 and 26-inches; they are feeding on all kinds of small bait, including baby squid, silversides, and small herring. Even though we have been doing very well on small Hogy skinny’s, both weighted and on very small jigheads, 7- or 10-inch bubblegum, amber, or bone Hogy originals are an excellent choice even though they don’t match up with what the fish are feeding on.

Although many anglers who toss topwaters elect to use big wooden pencils or spooks, smaller, plastic plugs that contain fish attracting rattles have worked really well when tossed in and among the rocks. They can even be dead drifted like a plastic or fly. One key is to make sure you are tight to your offering when it hits the water as the fish will often jump all over it in that instant.

I continue to see some boaters jigging wire, but it looks like more of them are turning to live-lining scup or other baits, perhaps pogies, as they drift along. Boat traffic in the Hole is very intense in the summer and you have to make sure your head is on a swivel to watch out for the crazies.

A trip down the sound of the Islands will almost certainly deliver entertainment with smaller surface feeding bass and blues; the best and most consistent action occurs when the fish have the bait pinned up against the rocks or in a cove as opposed to open water where it is more difficult to hem the baitfish in. In Robinson’s and Quick’s, there are more occasions when the action is out in the open, but even there, working structure is a more consistent practice.

Salty Cape reader Chase Worthington was able to pick up some bluefish in the 7 pound range in Woods Hole this week.
Salty Cape reader Chase Worthington was able to pick up some bluefish in the 7 pound range in Woods Hole this week.

One of the challenges for charter captains who concentrate on casting is getting bigger bass for their clients. The Islands certainly provide those opportunities and I know of one fly guide who happened upon a school of big fish that had pinned bait against the shore as the rollers assisted them. It’s never a bad idea to consider wind direction and water condition when choosing where you are going to fish.

Although we have managed to pick up some decent fish on live eels during the daytime, I am really looking forward to my upcoming night trips using them along with big wooden plugs.

Jigging wire continues to produce a pick of bass up into the 20+-pound class, but keeping track of what spots fish best at certain stages of the tide is critical to success – even more so with the schools of bass much smaller and concentrated in very specific areas. I haven’t heard of anyone doing anything on tubes, but many folks haven’t turned to them yet.

Despite having plenty of fresh pogies and even livies at times, the bait crew has been struggling; it’s pretty simple to find them since they fish a very limited number of areas and they will generally hang there until they fish it out. Naushon contains a number of these locales.