Stellwagen Bank, MA-Cod & Boston Harbor -Stripers

From: B-Fast Charters/Capt. Mike Bartlett
Date: 10 Jun 1999
Remote Name:


Green Harbor, Marshfield, MA-Cod Fishing

Saturday 6/5, Capt. Al guided the Dave Gaw charter from Springfield,MA to Stellwagen Bank on the JANET B. Al found fish in the shoal-water and in the deep-water east of the Bank. Jigs and teasers as well as bait have been producing cod cusk and a few haddock from the deep-water. We had a rather extended visit from the Coast Guard, doing routine inspections as well as checking for Stripers caught in the EEZ, which must not be retained. Although the fishing interruption wasn't appreciated by the clients, it is good to see the enforcement effort and the Coast Guard's presence on the Bank. Sunday, Gary Brown's group from Putnam,CT had good catches of cod from the deep-water. This was Gary's second cod trip this season and is scheduled for two days in July to do battle with Minot Ledge's big Stripers. We will continue cod fishing through the end of the month, then turning our sportfishing efforts to striped bass, blues and giant bluefin tuna. Starting in October, fall cod fishing will resume with two of B-Fast's vessels fishing all winter.

Cohasset's Minot's Ledge and Boston Harbor-stripers

Saturday morning 6/5, I guided Ernie Foster's group from Scituate, MA in Boston Harbor for stripers using Fly and light-tackle on the B-FAST. We found the bass feeding on silversides early off the Quarantine rocks. Chartreuse Half & Half's and SAR-MUL-MAC'S worked well on fly tackle and Fin-S rubber baits produced on spinning tackle. Most of the bass were between 18 and 27 inches. During the morning, the bass pushed the bait to the surface, attracting the gulls at Spectacle, Dorchester flats and off Long Island. In the afternoon, Ernie's second group came aboard in Cohasset bound for Minot's as reports of big bass on caught on the ledges were rumored. Ernie's clients John and Sam Abbott of Canton, MA, although avid fisherman, weren't fly fisherman. So we switched to light-tackle trolling and spinning. Sam commented that he was the "Jinx" on all prior fishing charters. As luck would have it, Sam hooked "Walter" on the first pass over the ledge. Pete Flaherty's tube and Sam's angling skill proved too much for "Walter". Sam first bass ever measured 42" and tipped the scales at 26 pounds. Angler's looking for their personal best keeper striper would do well to read Charlie Soar's previous articles, in the "Fisherman" magazine, on the techniques in fishing the tube and worm rig. Charlie has forgotten more than most anglers know about striper fishing having learned from some of the East coasts best Skippers. Charlie believes that tubes are the most effective and consistent producing trolling lure for big bass, I agree. So does octogenarian, Ralph Lovejoy of Scituate, MA, who boated a 44", 31 pound bass, "Walter's cousin", and another 39" keeper on Monday 6/7. Charlie Harris, an avid fly fisherman from Bervely,MA and friend, fished the outer ledges from Minot's to Boston on Sunday morning. Although the tide was high, we found, at a number of ledges, small bass which readily inhaled the Half & Half's we were casting. At sunrise, Charlie Harris hooked into a really big bass which ripped the backing off his Charlton reel. One problem in fishing the ledges are the rocks themselves. Even with tough fluorocarbon leader, the barnacles did there damage, and "Walter's 2nd cousin" made off with Charlie's fly. Monday afternoon I picked up Sean Dutton , here on vacation from Zimbabwe, Africa, at Rowe's Wharf, on Boston's waterfront. Sean, use to doing battle with African Tigerfish, wanted to give Boston's stripers a try on the fly rod. Although not the aerial acrobats tigerfish are, his 26" striper on an Orvis 7 wgt Trident, proved to be an exciting battle. As evening fell, the stripers pinned herring in the main channel off Castle Island. Sean couldn't believe it. Where else can you catch gamefish on fly tackle, a stones throw away from major a urban center with commercial airliners passing overhead. Tuesday morning, Tom Keer, Boston, MA, reported seeing "pogies" or Menhaden off Long Island with big bass chasing them. Although he had follows, none of the keepers the bunker patterns he was presenting.

Capt. Mike Bartlett, B-Fast Charters, bfast@bigfoot.com, www.spav.com/progc/bfast/