Here I was, worryin’ away that the big push of bass would be nonexistent this year, and the migration goes and TOTALLY REDEEMS ITSELF.
Big bass, I mean some real biggins’ folks, are in Cape Cod Bay. We’re talkin’ about bass up to 40lbs. Although it’s not Race Point and backside that’s holding the big fish. It’s Billingsgate. Big fish clustered into small wolf packs are hanging all over the east side of Cape Cod Bay feeding on mackerel, squid, herring and sand eels. Mackerel are a sure bet, but surprisingly, the bigger fish have come on 9″ Doc Spooks, Magic Swimmers, and Joe Baggs Patriot Fish in mackerel.
Our tactic has been to move around frequently and keep an eye on the sonar for streaking fish. Dense schools hanging on the bottom have been tough to budge. They’ve been finicky when on sand eels, and especially when the fleet is right on top of them, but if you venture away from the boats, you’ll find a few fish willing to smack your plug into the air. Trolling Sebiles, SPs and tube and worm has yielded some great fish, too. Macks can be found off the BH Bouy or along the western edge of the shoal. Squid are a cool by-catch.
Other CCB locales heven’t produced as well as past years, but there are still fish at the East End, Scorton Ledge, Sandy Neck and Barnstable. Race Point and Backside are getting hot and should remain that way for a few weeks at least. Not many blues in the Bay yet but judging by reports coming from NJ, the Sounds, Buzzards Bay, we should get a good run this year. And bonito in June!? Looks like our little visitors from last year grew a little and decided they liked their Northern summer haunts. We’ll see if this run continues up into CCB.
Plymouth is still loaded with 26″ fish by Clarks, and along the channels. On the outgoing tides, target the rips. On the incoming, drift the flats. There are whispers of larger fish in the Bay hanging around in a specific Hole.
If you haven’t heard (which is very unlikely) big bass pushed into the Ditch the past few days and provided anglers 2017 and 2018 levels of blitz fishing. Only this time, the bass were on squid. If I sound indifferent to this news then you’ve guessed my tone correctly. I saw too many videos of poor fish handling and examples of “Live Spot Burning” from so-called “Industry Professionals” to get excited for this news.
Listen, I love a blitz as much as the next guy. Especially a blitz where 30# bass are pushing illex squid up onto the rocks by the 5-gallon bucket load. This is exhilarating stuff. And maybe I’m being a Debbie-downer here, but we need to take care of this stock. And live streaming the blitz does the exact opposite of this.
I’m not sure the typical patterns for bass on squid in the Ditch. When they’re on macks or herring, you can bet that those fish will filter into Cape Cod Bay eventually. With squid? I’m not so sure. Hopefully they don’t stick around in the land cut for too long.
I guess the closing thought of my Canal rant is that big fish are in so go down, bring some plugs and jigs that look like squid, and catch ’em up. If you catch one (which you probably will) give the big girl a nice long revive in the current and let her swim away.
Wind is going to be a problem this weekend. And without a tournament pushing me out into Cape Cod Bay, I may stick around my local haunt in the Three Bays this weekend and reacquaint myself with the fly rod. We should have some decent tides to drift clousers and grim reapers (thanks Geoff) across the flats. I’m feeling a big one on the fly. Outgoing tide Saturday and Sunday should provide some shots at big fish hanging on the bottom.
Macks are still plentiful at the “1”. Try drifting them by Saquish Head, The Nummet, Splitting Knife, and the backside of Clarks. Tube and worm around Warrens Cove will start to produce soon. My biggest fish of the year always comes this way in the Three Bays.
If the wind lays down either day, we’ll be heading across to the shoals fully equipped with squid flies and big mackerel patterns to try and tempt a hoss. Let’s get it done! If you’re out there come say hi. We’ll be the guys drinking Bloody Marys and slinging flatwings to linesiders.