Cape 'elbow' weekend report (Chatham) [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Cape 'elbow' weekend report (Chatham)

07-28-2009, 04:22 AM
Saturday there was an almost freakish invasion of nice fish up to 41" (bait guy) on the flood in an UDL. Bait guys cleaned house. On the way to the water I filled my gas tank which stopped evenly at 34.00. I told Neal I would land a 34" when we were gearing up. Ironically, I landed a 34" fish soon after he landed his 32". We called it a success and went to seek a congratulatory lobster roll.

Went back Sunday, three times the people and nothing but a handful of schoolies among the crowd, the bait guys were perplexed. I hooked up once blind casting (good fish, long runs, spit the hook) but didn't see another fish touched by anyone for over 2 hours after that so I left to run errands. It was the proverbial "yesterday" but at least we were there.

Gear side note - I stuck with the 0X Orvis Knotsense (15#) and the double bowline all weekend, both held great. I replace the half-hitch with a full hitch (overhand) to start the knot otherwise it's the climber's knot.

After losing a flyline recently I spooled on a 275 grain line I had lying around and it has fished well. It didn't load my 9wt very well but the retrieve was crisp and I could put a lot of life into the fly. I caught a lot of fish on that setup.

Then I found one of those discontinued 325 QD's on clearance and spooled it up. Casts great but what a difference on the strip retrieve (which is everything to the fish). A lot of dull weight in the water due to hvy grains and fat line diameter. Compared to the 275 gr line it felt dead and I wasn't convinced that I had the right action on the fly. This gave me de ja vu from my hybrid steelhead spey line days when the diameter of the sinking portion made a huge difference in the fishability of the line even if it had less density. Thin line cuts the current, reacts to water movement, and casts nicer.

I've decided to frankenstein this line. First, at 325 gr over 28 ft it's approx 11 gr/ft. That's almost as heavy as T14. I am going to cut off 2 feet and replace the front taper with a clear intermediate 6' tapered polyleader with a tippet which actually extends the head a few feet while cutting down 22 grains and adding a real taper (the QD is blunt). If it still feels doggy I will go back another and add 8ft, etc - longer front taper for each cut I go back until the head feels crisp to retrieve again. Failing that I will revert to 275 grain and try it on my 8wt (vs 9wt). If these bigger class fish beat me up too bad on the 8wt then it's back to the drawing board.

My point is, this has nothing to do with the rod but the lack of vibrance during the strip retrieve due to the characteristics of the line. The perky pop I've been getting with the thinner lighter line has been producing wrist wrenching takes from 31-38" fish consistently for me lately. It's my belief that striper anglers do not pay enough attention to the impact of line diameter on action in current. I certainly had not.

Big bait - Reports of mackerel from Chatham to the Race. Squid, Macks and big sand eels around Ptown with big fish on them.

Refuge is still good on specific tide phases at specific spots. Multi-legal sized fish per outing.

I'm jonesin' for some fluke filet... stuffed with blue crab and rolled with a slice of bacon. I'm going to spend some time on the soundside hunting them on a fly when I can pull myself away from the solid striper fishing of late.

Other news - I got my resident beach sticker and shellfish permit and a rake. Looking forward to littlenecks, softshells, oysters in months with an "r" and scallops in November (maybe hehe). I am psyched for some shellfishing.

Too many "schoolies" in the Squire lately for my tastes.

07-28-2009, 06:55 AM
Walking out on the drop sat am I saw very little, maybe a few wakes. I was wondering how you did after the turn. Sunday I got up intending to fish but I had relatives coming that were going to stay for a few days so decided I had too many chores to finish up. Something is very wrong with my picture and I need to figure it out and get on the water. Your reports are beginning to irritate me.:frown:

07-28-2009, 07:16 AM
Fred -

come on over to the Monomoy Refuge side on the flood - it's been good! Or let's do the shuttle over to North Island for a change of pace.

07-28-2009, 08:42 AM
" Other news - I got my resident beach sticker and shellfish permit and a rake. Looking forward to littlenecks, softshells, oysters in months with an "r" and scallops in November (maybe hehe). I am psyched for some shellfishing. "


I can tell you that the place you mentioned to me earlier this year is the best quahogin' spot on the planet. Expect to rake up several dozen per hour which usually yields about 2 dozen "perfect size" for the half-shell. I also raked up two live oysters (which I put back) so they are around but rare. Softshells are tough to find on the accessible mainland spots but if you have kayak/boat there are plenty. I'm definitely up for some scallop foraging in November. I'll be doing some recon over the new eel grass beds in September. :smokin:

07-28-2009, 08:56 AM
Great to hear that worked out! I knew that when I could find plenty by shuffling my boots it would be good with a rake. Save me a few :D I have some ideas on softshells... willing to bet it's the motherlode and not being mined. Discuss offline.

07-28-2009, 01:22 PM
Saturday morning I made the trip down to Eastham Coastguard beach and fished and walked down to the inlet for the minus tides. I started around 3:00 am arrived at around false dawn just as the tide started to ebb ,what a rip. As the tide ebbed I made my way out to the center of the inlet hoping to find some activity ,it was a major disappointment , no bait and no fish. I had a bad feeling when I looked across over towards Nauset beach and saw no 4x4's and no one fishing.:frown:

Mike Oliver
07-29-2009, 05:16 AM

I know that horrible feeling too well. But you have to admit you will have had times with stellar fishing and all to yourslf with no other Fisher in sight. The crowd often get it wrong or just plain do not get out of bed. I am planning to do that walf next May. Now my luck tells me that the dread "Mung" will spoil my day, but I have to do this expedition anyway. In two years of fishing the Cape I am ashamed to say apart from Race Point I have not fished the Ocean side beaches. This will be put right big time in 2010.


07-29-2009, 06:00 AM
Mike, you shouldn't see much mung in May so go for it! A neat way to experience the outer beaches + that time of year is take the Rip Ryder out to South Beach. You can fish the inside flats and dropoffs and it's a short walk across to the national seashore which in my opinion is as fine a stretch as any *particularly* that time of year and you'll see why soon enough :smokin: