Bait, whether in the form of eels or pogies, is apparently your best bet when it comes to catching anything of size from Woods Hole to Cuttyhunk.
The chunk characters have been hauling in some nice fish on both tides in the Hole, while smaller Hogy’s and stickbaits such as the Rebel Jumpin’ Minnow have accounted for good numbers of schoolies during the falling tide this week and at the change to incoming. If you look carefully, you can see that the bass are popping at times on small, small squid, giving flyrodders an advantage since they can match the size of the bait with white, light pink, or tan flies that might not be exact imitations of the tentacled stuff yet work very well. Presentation is more important at most times, with quartering casts that allow the fly to swing without drag into the transition from smooth to tumbling water an important element of this type of fishing. Poppers tossed in among the rocks and rips as they begin to wane is also effective, as John
Breznak from Arizona found out with a 30+-inch bass that clobbered his foam bug just as it hit the water.
Jigging wire and parachutes just doesn’t seem to be getting it done in the Hole right now, although Capt. John Christian has managed to pull out a few legal bass down around Quick’s. There has been a lot of life up and down both sides of the islands with terns working over schools of small bass and a few bluefish. Small white plugs and pearl Zoom Super Flukes have been effective, but fly fishing for these pugnacious pipsqueaks is always fun and there are just enough 26 to 30+-inch bass around to provide an element of the unknown.
Even Sow and Pigs has been inundated for the most part with schoolies and the same is true of Cuttyhunk and Penikese, yet there are enough schools of larger bass around to make it interesting. These fish have been hanging on the bottom and rarely giving their location away during high water, but a bit of patience and a willing to toss plugs has resulted in some better fish when they push up to feed on what is mostly small bait.