Strategy: Striped Bass Fishing in Canals and Channels from Shore #161

Lures and Techniques for Striped Bass Fishing in Canals and Channels from Shore

Approach: Canals and channels are great when you know fish are likely to be in the area. With such high volumes of water running by your feet each minute, there is endless potential for bait and fish to blow by. The challenge here is how to deal with such fast moving water. If fish are holding deep, which they are in canals 85 percent of the time,  you’ll be required to fish the swing.

“If I Had Just One” with Capt. Mike Hogan
LOCATION: Cape Cod
TARGETED SPECIES: Striped Bass
LURE: Hogy Pro Tail Paddle
COLORS: White, olive and green 

“I would grab the Hogy Pro Tail Paddle, possibly 4oz or 5oz, in the heaviest of tide stages. I regularly carry white, olive and green.”

  1. PROFILE: This 6.5″ Hogy Pro Tail Paddle is the perfect size to match herrig, bunker, mackerel and squid with the color to match.
  2. WEIGHT: The Hogy Pro Tail Paddles are the heaviest soft baits in their class, allowing for maximum depth when fishing the swing in heavy current. The paddle kicks in the lightest of currents but won’t wash out at peak tides.
  3. DURABILITY: The virgin plastic is imported from Germany, is extremely durable and will stand up to heavy duty use. The Hogy Pro Tail Paddle features tuna-grade VMC barbarian jig hooks which allow you to put maximum pressure on the fish swimming down tide without fear of a straightened hook.

Playbook:

  1. Deep — Cast uptide and let your bait sink to the bottom. How far you cast uptide will be dictated by the current conditions and the amount of weight you are throwing.. The goal is to situate you cast so that the lure is touching bottom when it’s perpendicular to you. The fishing really starts when the lure begins to “swing.” If you are having trouble getting down with a paddle, switch to a Hogy Pro Tail Eel or a metal jig such as the Herring Jig.
  2. Surface — Topwater offerings are generally best used at the beginning of the current flow and towards the end when it is slowing. Targeting the change is definitely a very important strategy; for example, in the Cape Cod Canal, a situation known as “breaking tides” occurs when there is a change from the dying west current to the beginning of the east flow towards Cape Cod Bay coinciding with sunrise. These tides are some of the most popular for anglers who toss topwater plugs and there are numerous channels and canals where topwater lures are very effective

Casting Tips for Beginners with Capt. Kevin Gould
LOCATION: Canals/Channels
LURE: Hogy Pro Tail Paddle (Heavy)

  1. When jigging soft plastics, such as the Hogy Pro Tail Paddle, or metal jigs near the bottom in heavy current, use the lightest weight possible to maintain bottom contact. This will impart a more natural swimming action to the bait as well as minimize snags.
  2. When fishing with a swimming plug or paddle tail soft plastic, cast lightly down current and allow the tide to provide the lure with a swimming action.
  3. Modulate your casting distance to work different patches of water or bottom as your lure works down tide.