Elizabeth Islands Fishing Report – September 28, 2017

Tom Chilton of Sippewisset with an estimated 40-pound bass caught along the Elizabeth's on a live eel this week.
Tom Chilton of Sippewisset with an estimated 40-pound bass caught along the Elizabeth’s on a live eel this week.

Fog really paid havoc with most everyone’s fishing plans this week, but pitching live eels continued to put big bass in the boat for Phil Stanton and his coterie of angler friends. I saw him on Tuesday as they were pitching eels, but he was still waiting for the tide to turn. When it did, they managed some quality bass, including an estimated 30-pounder and two more fish in the teen’s.
On Wednesday, however, Phil had his neighbor, Tom Chilton, out and Mr. Wiggly did it again, with a bass in the 40-pound class that they released. With the wind kicking up out of the north, they elected to call it a day after that fish, but what a way to finish up after a very brief trip.

Creeping in and out of the fog to scan both sides of the islands was the task at hand for long portions of each day up to midweek; there are large schools of peanut bunker around the islands that make for a perfect target for small bass and blues. Timing when things will go off has been tough, but concentrating on a dying tide and then the turn often proves to be the correct ticket.

From Robinson’s to Cuttyhunk, including Penikese, the surf has really been up, with rollers crashing on the rocks. Keeping an eye on what is behind or creeping up on your beam is critical as waves of this type can pick your boat up and push you right onto the rocks. If possible, keep the bow of your boat into the waves is preferred to positioning yourself sideways to their direction as they can roll you over.

Any albie action I have heard of has been of the “blink and you missed it” type, but there is always the thought when it is foggy that you are missing a blitz somewhere along our local archipelago.

Woods Hole had some outstanding albie fishing on Monday, but it was only spotty through early afternoon today. The waters around Penzance and Uncatena had some good schools, but there were a lot of fish off the Steamship, but Phil Stanton said he only saw a couple of boats today lazing about when he came in for the 1:00 PM bridge. Keep in mind that when they are racing along a shoreline edge and there are folks fishing on them, then moving in with your boat and crowding them is a big no-no.

While the albies are being albies, the stripers in the Hole are filling up on all of the peanut bunker that is being trapped against shorelines and the many rock ledges. Accurate casting is often required and being able to place your lure or fly right up against the shoreline is a valuable skill to hone.

The tautog fishing has been steady in the Hole and along the islands, particularly in areas where the water temperatures are colder and more to their liking. The haze and warm temperatures this week did little to get things really moving on the tog front, something that has been reported up in Buzzards Bay around Cleveland Ledge.