08 Spring Clave, In The Books [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: 08 Spring Clave, In The Books

05-19-2008, 11:20 AM
Fishing was spotty, cuisine at the barbaque simplified but great and the company even better.

I hear good things about Friday's fishing. I stood in the upper Bass river for about an hour late in the afternoon without seeing a sign. This is a dawn, dusk or high tide location so expectations were'nt high. Adrian hit a great worm hatch in the vicinity later that evening.

Overslept Saturday am but, with the horizontal rain, it didn't matter. Spent the morning riding around from spot to spot but couldn't bring myself to brave the elements. Deja vu all over again except I sure did miss Basser. Fished the refuge when the weather cleared. Nice outgoing. As soon as it started running hard I hooked up. Figured I was in for an hour of fish after fish based on experienc at that spot but after the one nothing happened.

Hit the bayside Sunday am. Mainiacs overslept but eventually joined me. I had half a dozen early including a couple of small keepers. I bailed at 9:00am, then back to reality.

In summary:
Expected hot spots were slow
Bayside was apparently the place to be

05-19-2008, 11:44 AM
Thurs and Fri we fished in and around Cotuit. Fish were there but had to work for them . Covered lots of ground (via kayak) and took two or three at each location. No keepers, few micros, and some slot fish in the mid 20's. Sat looked for blues on the south side, worked all day for one fish. Sun hit CCB area and took a few early AM to mid 20's.

Was great to meet some of you and hope to fish with you this summer.

05-19-2008, 03:42 PM
About all I did was manage to loose my wallet :mad:

Sean Juan & I caught a few fish at various locations, both sound & bay side over the course of the weekend. There was a noticeable lack of any bait everywhere we went. From Washburn Island to Wellfleet. I did not fish at the refuge. Even though the weather was not the best, The company was outstanding. As was the BBQ. it was good to see old friends again & meet the new ones. I'll be back down in a few weeks I need to finish off my bottle of scotch I left with Jim Simms...Heh heh if it makes it that long that is :hihi:

05-19-2008, 03:57 PM
In summary:
Expected hot spots were slow
Bayside was apparently the place to be

Fred nailed it.

right tide and wind and the fish were there, if you covered the ground and put your time in on the water.

right tide on Friday & Saturday, Sunday not so much. . . . :roll:

great to see the maine guys again, catch up with some old faces and meet some new ones at the barbie and on the beach.

as always, a pleasure to fish and drink with the Simms crowd, fishhawk and long lost cousin CSJ.

the apprenticeship continues - I am now tying up 12" schoolie flies :chuckle:


05-19-2008, 04:46 PM
Thursday morning I checked out the refuge without a bump but did see two schools of bunker tail flipping. I made a few casts on the surf side but came up with just a bump that might have been a fish or a piece of driftwood.

I fished a worm hatch Thursday evening that rivaled anything I have seen anywhere :smokin: No big fish but plenty of surface activity and the usual presentation challenges. Size seemed to be the key and a small GP about 1" given the occaisional twitch in the current produced some good action.

Friday at the Canal kicked off the "official" event with Paul , Sean, Jim (Flydoc) and Steve from NH. We elected to have a friendly wind and gave the two handers a good workout East of the Herring run on the mainland side. No tugs but there was plenty of bait, mostly small herring about 4" hugging the rip-rap. I also spotted a few very small squid working through the weeds. The Skagit lines perfomed well. Elsewhere, Big Dave had been exploring on the South Side in his new cool Native Watercraft Kayak and came home with a huge bluefish which was deep-fried to perfection and assisted down with a couple of G&T's. Bluefish are excellent eating when prepared properly at this time of year!

Saturday morning was a blow-out so we did the fly-shop tour. The afternoon turned out nice and I headed over to the refuge and met FredA on my way to Stage Harbour. A lot of hiking produced two small stripers but the water looked spectacular. Saturday evening, Dave and I returned in search of hatching worms. The hatch didn't materialize but there were bass feeding at the surface on the downwind shoreline all eveing and some great fishing. Dave picked up a 30" fish and we both had a few in the 24" range. A well placed cast into the rings of the boil produced almost every time.

I made it to the Stone Horse just in time to bag the last burger and a slice of Chris and Drew's awesome cake:smokin:

A big thank you to Craig (CSJ360) for saving me a shot of that excellent cask strength single-malt - you are a true gentleman!

It was great to say hi to old friends and meet some new ones. I even got to meet Pete Vicar!!!

Sunday morning I took off to fish Buzzards Bay after some great reports from the previous day. As so often happens this time of year, those fish were long gone and the next wave hadn't quite arrived. We did pick up a few dinks.

Compared to previous years, the Chatham area certainly seems a bit slow to get going . Or maybe the past few seasons things have been early? From what I see going on in parts South and West, it is going to be a bumper year given the amount of bait (Herring and Bunker).

05-19-2008, 05:54 PM
Skunked on Friday, despite moving from Canal to West Dennis Beach to Morris Island over the course of the day. Got reports that things were active on the Bayside, so Highway61 and myself braved the early AM rain/wind on Saturday to fish the northern shore of Wellfleet Harbor with some modest success, before moving down to the west side of Stage Harbor inlet....bad move apparently, but one of the few places where one could fish given the now howling westerly winds. Called it a day around 3 PM (had been up since 4 AM on short sleep after Friday night at the Squire). The usual outstanding Clave BBQ at the Stone Horse Saturday night, which wrapped up with a performance by "Juro and the Clavers...UNPLUGGED". Late appearance by the Mayor in his finest professorial attire.
Sunday was the day of days for me....started off with a nice schoolie landed and a few long line releases on the Brewster flats, before Highway61 and me relocated back to Wellfleet. I caught only one more fish all day, but it was the biggest @#$*&'ing fish I've ever caught....after what had to have been a 7-8 min tug of war, I landed a very ticked off 38 inch striper....after laying my rod over it to mark it's length for later reference (didn't have a tape measure with me at the time)....took a few deep breaths, then lovingly released it back to the now warming confines of Wellfleet Harbor. Those who know me will take this story at face value; I did not have a camera, as I had a cell phone short out while in Florida following a brief exposure to the salt, and will never bring a piece of electronic gear not made for fishing anywhere near the water again. Steve (Highway61) had trekked on ahead to another promising spot, and so was not their to witness the event. There were some guys on the other side (?Forum members?) from where I was fishing who may have witnessed the battle, but I can't say for sure. I tried to get Steve into the action as soon as he came back to the same spot, and had a few nibbles in that area, but no more fish solidly hooked or landed that day.
Finished up just south of Minister's Point, marvelling at the Nauset Break, and sight fishing for keeper-sized clumps of weed drifting in the current, that for all the world looked to me and Steve like cruising stripers....guess I'd better give up my aspirations of hanging up my stethoscope to become a striper guide:devil:
Looking very much forward to the upcoming weekend, when the action should really start to heat up.

05-19-2008, 06:47 PM
I was 0-fer on Friday and Saturday :( . I tried a couple of south side spots, Morris Island and Harding Beach. I bumped into a few other forum guys who reported some success, and I got to see Kimosabe and Alan hook 2 fish in a row right next to me :cool: . The fishing was a little disappointing, especially as compared with last year, but it was great to see some old friends and meet a few new ones and the cookout was a lot of fun. "Good job" to all who were involved in the planning and preparation.

Word had it that there were fish on the bayside, so on Sunday I started at Sesuit Harbor but I couldn't even catch a schoolie from the end of the jetty :confused: . Then I spent some time at Sunken Meadow Beach, which looked awesome and had loads of bait, but I didn't even get a bump. After the tide dropped a bit I went to the Brewster flats and made my way out to the edge. I caught about 5 fish in a row (3 on consecutive casts :smokin: ) which were all small, but each time there was a bigger fish shadowing the one on my line. I thought I'd hit the jackpot but then I casted for a long time with only a couple more bumps. I finally hooked up again, this time with a pretty good fish. It pulled most of the line out of my basket and I was going to get it onto the reel, but when I tried to let it take the last bit of line it came off the hook :mad: . I casted for a while longer as the water started getting deeper and moving faster, and I figured that the fish I lost was going to be my thrill for the day. Then I saw a shadow moving against the flow and I flipped the fly out to the general vicinity. The line immediately came tight and a nice striper jumped completely out of the water right in front of me :whoa: . It made a strong run and I got the fish on the reel, then it ran again but I was able to stop it before it got into the backing (it's a good kind of pain :hihi: ). After a nice battle that included a few more runs I was able to land this fish, which measured 33+ inches :D .

05-19-2008, 06:53 PM
This morning I went back to Brewster right at the bottom of the tide. After the water started filling in I hooked and landed another nice fish, maybe just over keeper size. Hooked one other small fish that had a big one underneath so I tried to upgrade. I was able to drop the small fish but the bigger one didn't go for the fly. That was it for the day, although I did try a few more spots.


05-19-2008, 06:57 PM
Got to the Stonehorse around 11 pm, just in time to wake FishHawk up. Nice to see everyone who was there at that time..Just Fished Sunday with Al Parquet and Larry (shadfreak) who stayed over and we left around 9 for the ferry. We decided that we should atleast try south beach and the Ocean side to see if we could spot migrating pods as we had done every year at the clave. Unfortunatly, Keith was there at 8am but no one showed up so he called it a day. We decided to try the south side and fished Ridgevale beach on the incoming but nothing...headed over to the Bayside but as expected, high tide, and no where to go ... Coffee at the Brewster General Store which is always a treat to walk around ,and called it a day...left for home about 3... Hope to be back this weekend for the RipRyder and south beach....

05-19-2008, 07:08 PM
Yo Flydoc,
Way to go Jim, you have been due for a big one for too long.

Q I am also glad to hear you got one too. Nice pic.

05-19-2008, 07:28 PM
Friday at the Canal kicked off the "official" event with Paul , Sean, Jim (Flydoc) and Steve from NH. We elected to have a friendly wind and gave the two handers a good workout East of the Herring run on the mainland side. No tugs but there was plenty of bait, mostly small herring about 4" hugging the rip-rap. I also spotted a few very small squid working through the weeds. The Skagit lines perfomed well.


tsk,tsk...Western end on that tide this time of year. I heard they were biting bigtime:biggrin:

05-19-2008, 07:58 PM
Yo Flydoc,
Way to go Jim, you have been due for a big one for too long.

Q I am also glad to hear you got one too. Nice pic.

Warren- Thanks buddy...we'll have to get the three of us (you, me, and Steve) back there the next time the two of you are back down here.

Quentin- glad to see things picked up for you on Sunday as well. Hope to see you down again this coming weekend.

P.S. Can't wait for the REAL stripers to start cruising off Minister's Point;)

05-19-2008, 08:05 PM
quentin - I also had big fish shadowing my schoolies, only 3 of mine were actually attacked, 2 of which were grabbed by the tail :whoa:

I also got to watch another guys fish get taken by a 36-40" cow - it must be a spring thing . . .

thats why I'm a tying 12" schoolie flies :hihi:

05-20-2008, 04:39 AM
Reports pretty well sum up the fishing for the Clave. It was good to see the Chris and Drew from Maine. Had a great time with Craig and Jim and his son Chris at the "Pressure Cooker. " The Sims Clan have the magic touch with the ladiies just ask the spiked chick. :chuckle: :hihi:
We had some good parking lot fishing with Paul Cheever and Sean Ransom.
Good to shoot the breeze with Warren and Sean Juan.

05-20-2008, 07:37 AM
A big thank you to all for your kind hospitality!!!

It was the first time for Alan & I and we had a blast. It was nice to have met some of you guys and hopefully more in the future. Here are some pics, hope it is ok to post them.





Our host, Juro


Old and new forum members shooting the breeze




05-20-2008, 10:23 AM
Well, this was my first clave and I survived! Starting out from NH on friday morning at 4AM and arriving at the Sunnyside diner (which I drove past several times) I had breakfast with Flydoc, Adrian, Sean, and Paul. We headed over to the canal - them with their manly spey rods, me with my wimpy 9 wt. The water was gin clear, but no luck. But it was great watching the guys elegantly roll cast their lines out into the current. Geeeze, it was fun to watch, but I was saying to myself, how am I going to explain to my wife that I need another rod?:whoa: By late morning I left those guys and headed over to Stage Harbor. There I met Kim, who just when I arrived, was reeling in a good sized schoolie. I thought ok here we go! Took my spot on the bank and on the second cast felt the line get tight and I was into my first clave striper. I went on to catch 3 more all within 15 minutes. Then.....nothing. It just died. I met Guernseybass and we chatted for a while. Later that night I had dinner with Larry, Jim’s crew at the Squire and got to meet a bunch of the guys. I even got myself immortalized in Lou's journal.:chuckle:

Saturday morning and another 5AM wake up call which I nearly missed. I caught up with Flydoc in Wellfleet and with the driving rain at our backs we each brought in a pair of 20" stripers. Deciding we would rather have breakfast than stand in the rain holding our rods, we headed to Sandi’s then on to Harding beach where I met the Maine crew.....but other than some laughs - no fish. Late in the afternoon I soloed at Brewster Flats, where in the blazing sun, I hooked up with a couple schoolies

It was great to meet the whole crew at the Stone Horse for the Saturday night BBQ. Matching names to FF handles was a challenge. Sunday morning Flydoc and I headed up to Wellfleet where I struck out, but doc caught his monsta. Wish I had seen it! I was off scouting new spots. Finally, we headed down to Minister’s Point where, from a distance, we both thought we saw a couple of giant Stripers crossing over the sand. In a stiff wind, I began flailing away – not a pretty sight – trying to place a fly in the path of the approaching striper when I noticed that these stripers had hair on their backs! Damn, it was a cruel joke…..weed in the shape of a striper! That was enough to send me home.

Thanks everyone for a great time. I look forward to doing some fishing with many of you this summer. My only regret was not getting out to SB. I will have to rectify that soon!


05-20-2008, 06:03 PM
Yup, the catching was slow but we weren't skunked. Great to see everyone again. John- Adrian- Juro- Dave- Porkslice Jim and Chris and everyone else. Thanks to the cooks and the scouts with reports. Alan and Kim did pretty well considering they fished nearly the same spots as us, just a bit more effort I guess.

And yes, I was the Mainiac who overslept Sunday, couldn't roust the brothers so I met Fred alone and missed the best part of the tide. Drew and Darryl made it a while later and we poked around but got no more fish but made plans for another time. Thanks Fred, great to fish with you again. I hope to make it back in June and maybe we can try it again.

Bill, I guess wee should have followed you Friday and Saturday. You seemed to have the tasty fly and hot spot those days. What a drag have to leave but the Saco is looking perfect just 3 miles from my front yard so watch out brownies. Also hear some twinks are moving in the marsh so I'll have to go drag a slow crab and see what I can dredge up.

05-20-2008, 06:52 PM
quentin - I also had big fish shadowing my schoolies, only 3 of mine were actually attacked, 2 of which were grabbed by the tail :whoa:

I also got to watch another guys fish get taken by a 36-40" cow - it must be a spring thing . . .

thats why I'm a tying 12" schoolie flies :hihi:

Here's one that John (striblue) tied a while back:


Might be a good tactic to fish with an accomplice: Have one person hook a schoolie and bring in a big follower, then the other person casts the schoolie imitation to see if the big one will take it.

Or maybe tie on a teaser just ahead of the schoolie imitation. If you catch a schoolie on the teaser then the schoolie imitation would be towed around right behind or even slightly beside the schoolie during the battle. Hmm . . . Would that be illegal or otherwise frowned upon? It's almost the same as using a schoolie for bait :tsk_tsk: .


05-21-2008, 02:22 AM
Back from my first Clave.
It was great to meet old friends and make new ones.

Many thanks to Chris and Jim Simms. It was great to meet Bob. Thanks also to Dave and JB.
Of course thanks to Juro for the barbecue and the guiding on saturday.
On saturday evening it was a pleasure to meet and put faces to names.

On sunday Joe, Lou and I went out on our own and tried a few spots to no avail and then we talked to a guy we met at the lighthouse who suggested a place where he saw some fish activity. In the howling wind we found a nice sheltered spot where we all caught some fish, not just schoolies but some a little larger.

Here's Lou

Lou again

Joe looks happy

On monday morning I went out, looked at Harding's and then on to Morris Island. There was a school of bunker but nothing with them. The wind started picking up so I went back to our sunday spot and picked up 6 fish.

In summary a great week end socially, the fishing ended up OK, but far from great.
It will be like I have heard on many occasions " You should come back next week". Unfortunately I can't. Shame.

05-21-2008, 06:09 AM
In my usual frenetic life style manner it looked like I would have to work most of the clave weekend - but suddenly the project fell apart late friday so was able to break free and pull into the Squire with an hour or two before the lights came on. Great to see the gang but by the conversation it sounded like the fishing around Chatham was d-e-a-d. In response to a friendly challenge at the bar I made a call - 2:30p at location X, sun would be shining and wind from the west. First time out so it was a stretch but I felt the vibe strongly.

Met the gang for breakfast at Sandi's at 7am. With time to kill until prime time four carloads of us gave it hell around the Chatham lighthouse area but it didn't take much time standing with the cajones below the tide line to confirm that the water temp was way too low so we headed west.

Herring River, Bass River, all the way to Parker River finding a few schoolies along the way. Broke for lunch almost in Hyannis and headed to location X 20 minutes ahead of schedule. Sun now illuminating things like a bonefish flat.

After a reasonable period of nothing, Dave17 spots a pod of cows and things explode. Fish are all over the place even behind us. We walk away from hours of good fishing to get the cookout started and even then I am a little late.

Special thanks to Sean Ransom, Jim Simms, and all the helping hands during the BBQ. The success of the cookout really depended on their help and quick thinking. Jam session was fun and Squire was out of control.

I had to leave Sunday for a family commitment, but it was a great time and I look forward to riding the Rip Ryder over to the refuge this weekend to officially kick off the season.

05-21-2008, 12:23 PM
The fishing took a back seat to the comraderie during the Spring Clave. Thanks to Juro for organizing and orchestrating this annual event that seems to get bigger each year. Nice to meet and fish with Pete Vicar, the bonefish guru. And yes, Warren, the single malt you left is still there, but only until this weekend.

Now for some serious fishing. The SW wind the last couple of days has brought in some new schools of bass on the southside, including a couple of keepers. The chopper blues have also showed up, albeit, early this year. The fishing is only going to improve as the water temps begin to moderate.

05-21-2008, 06:55 PM
Friday turned out to be my best day fishing numbers wise. Hit the bayside and the action was hot until the top of the tide then it shut down. FishHawk had three nice fat keepers 29" - 30" and about 25 for the morning. My second cast produced a nice 29" striper then 12" - 24" fish.

I ventured off to explore the beach but should have stayed put. Nice going FishHawk!

Glad you enjoyed the single malt Adrian; not for the faint of heart...61.9% - 123.8 proof. A little water did the trick. :eek: :tsk_tsk: :devil:

FishHawk had a weeeee dram...had a bad dream, some guy in bow tie or something like that.

05-21-2008, 07:14 PM
Great time guys!
My first clave, had a blast good to see some familiar faces and a few new ones.
John Robert (Bob) you missed your calling ...you are one hell of an entertainer and Chris I’ll hang with you anytime! Thanks Juro for all you hard work and Dave and JB also for showing us how its done let's not forget dad as he had big fish. Pete I’ll pm you with some dates hopefully we can do it again later in the season.

05-21-2008, 08:24 PM
This was the second 'Clave for VTLOON and I, and the first for my son, Jeff. I took a few pictures. You can view at:
You will see:
Joe and Barry setting up the Hobies
BBQ social, and music
Fishing time with Todd, Bob, et al
You won't see: Fish
Nevertheless, the experience and comradery was super. Big thanks to Juro, JimS and all those who made this a fun time for all of us.

For viewing the gallery, I recommend that you use "slideshow' in the upper right of the opening screen and it will go to a full screen show.
JimD, VT

05-22-2008, 08:56 PM
Another great Clave despite the fish being scattered. The company and the fishing were great...the catching was scattered but tough and fun. Saw the old friends and met some new ones. It was great to see JimD's son Jeff hang tough despite very challenging conditions. It was also great to see Jim's pictures did not include the one of me wading in water 3" over my waders.

Took the circuitous route to Vermont through RI. The wind was howling and the worms were hiding, but did have some sight fishing on the sand margins of Quonepponset Inlet and catch some schoolies. Word was there was a pretty good worm hatch in Ninegret Pond the previous week. Both ponds have some great flats; Quonnie's water is particularly clean/clear.

Many Thanks to Juro and all those whose work make these experiences possible.

So, when's the next Rip-Trip?