Old Harbor

The huge marsh and outflow here is one of the best shore fishing locations on the Cape Cod Bay side of Cape Cod but extreme caution must be exercised due to the strong current and slippery, rock covered bottom. Inside the marsh the water splits the marsh in three directions and there is virtually no shore access but some anglers fish along the most northerly of the splits behind Town Neck Beach (at high tide). Kayak anglers can reach all the channels with ease but with a tidal range of about 8 feet, plus the strong flow, the best fishing via kayak will be found during the two-hour period on either side of high tide, and being a strong paddler is essential.

The mouth of Old Harbor is where most of the fishing takes place. The water once ran between the two concrete and rock jetties at the end of the beach but that channel filled in many years ago. Still, school size bass can often be found between the jetties and along them. The best bet is to work the newer channel; some anglers prefer an incoming tide but most prefer the outgoing and wade out as the tide drops. This strong outflow attracts bass and bluefish, often quite large ones, especially after dark but again, extreme caution MUST be exercised while wading in this area. The opposite side of the outflow is difficult to access due to much private property and in recent years beach access has been severely restricted due to nesting shore birds.

All standard striper lures work here, as do live eels. All the Hogy Original Series plus the Sand Eeels and Skinnies are excellent choices here due to the strong current helping to impart even more lifelike action to the Hogys. Regardless of your choice of lures you will find the best action under low light conditions. An onshore breeze can result in great action but the water will fill with weed at those times and keeping lures clean – essential for hits – is very difficult.

Location: Marsh – behind Town Neck Beach; mouth of outflow – eastern end of Town Neck Beach.

Parking: Large town lot at beach, fee charged during the day in the summer, free and open all other times.

Access: Difficult for fishing the marsh, about ¼ mile walk required to reach mouth of outflow.

Special Note: In all cases whether fishing the marsh or the mouth, either on foot or by kayak, always consult tide tables to determine height, direction and force of the tide. This is not a place for the casual or inexperienced wading fisherman.