They might not be for everybody, but it sure has been nice seeing the large schools of bluefish around. I heard about them first from Bob Lewis who was hoping to fish Horseshoe Shoal last Sunday, but the wind and seas convinced him to go to plan B. He and his nephews stayed close to shore and ran into big schools of choppers in the 3 to 4-pound range racing through concentrations of peanut bunker off Popponesset.
It was the same story on Wednesday as there seemed to be even more fish about a mile or two off the Poppy/Cotuit area and they had a blast tossing surface flies at them; poppers, Crease Flies, Gurglers – it didn’t seem to matter.
Thursday morning, Capt. Warren Marshall called me to report that he had run into acres of bluefish in the same general area; even though they were headed to Horseshoe Shoal to fish for sea bass, they couldn’t resist playing with the blues.
I checked in with Ben Clabault from Forestdale Bait & Tackle on Route 130 this morning to ask if he had heard any reports of the sand people running into any numbers of blues, but they seem to be too far out. One angler said he saw them off Popponesset, but they were a couple of casts too far out. On the other hand, a fellow who fishes South Cape Beach regularly and has pretty much complaining about the lack of blues came in and told the Clabault’s that he had a good trip there recently. That is particularly good news because South Cape and blues just go together.
Dowses typically produces some bluefish and the occasional bass, especially on bait, but smaller bass are still around in the early morning and again at dusk up in pretty much every body of protected water from Falmouth to Chatham.
Lee Boisvert from Riverview Bait & Tackle on Route 28 in South Yarmouth said there has been some sporadic bluefish action for shore anglers down his way, but, again, it is clear that the boat crew is finding them with much more consistency.
If you are looking for larger bluefish, they can be had at Horseshoe Shoal, including some double-digit fish.
As far as sea bass goes, Warren said they fished the deeper water off Horseshoe and around Wreck Shoal and picked up some good fish on jig and custom rigs that Jim Young at Eastman’s Sport & Tackle in Falmouth ties up. He explained that the action wasn’t hot and heavy, but they took home enough nice ones to enjoy some fresh fried fish.
Other folks have reported catching a mix of sea bass and scup off Nobska, Hyannis, and the wreck off Harwich, but if you are trolling for bluefish or bass on any of the shoals in the sounds there is a better likelihood that you will catch a BSB as opposed to your target species.