Although there were occasional pop-ups of albies over the last several trips I took along the islands, they generally didn’t stay up long enough to get decent casts at them. If that is what you run into, remember that blindcasting with Epoxy Jigs, especially with a skipping retrieve, or even using amber seven-inch Hogy’s is the way to go.
As far as bass go, live eels or pogies are clearly the best and most consistent option when it comes to seeking larger fish. An eel produced a fine 30+-pound bass for Phil Stanton on Monday. That same day, Barney Keezell and Dana Wilson worked long stretches of typically productive Vineyard Sound shoreline without a touch before they found a mother lode of bass that fed hard on the change of tide, hitting their live eels with abandon.
I can’t say that I have seen anything even closely resembling surface activity from any bass, even schoolies, and the lack of bluefish continues to confound most folks. The only blues that I have heard of have been big, gnarly ones that clearly are resident fish and they have been caught mainly on eels.
If you like to throw plugs, especially big wood, or larger spooks like the Doc, then white or bone are the top colors at this time of year and it takes patience to effectively cover water, searching for a single large fish. The best plug anglers don’t randomly toss their offerings around, but target likely looking rocks and holding places based on current and wind conditions.