Saturday morning I headed out of Manchester Harbor at 5:30 a.m. with my friend John on his boat in search of tuna. We got to the BE Buoy in the general southwestern portion of Stellwagon for sunrise, and slowly, about a mile long stretch of birds began to materialize in the skyline--a good sign. Figured there might be a huge pod os school or bigger stripers under these birds heading south, but there were no splashes other than the birds slamming into the water and flying away with large sandeels draping from their mouths.
We et out a six rod spread of various tuna enticers and began trolling. Then the ariels started--400 yards ahead several giant footballs launched out of the water, then a few more dog sized fish. I got up in the tower to get a better view. Staring under a very active pod of birds I saw about a 120 lb. bluefin launch out of the water, all silver and blue, mouth open...
An unreal sight, but alas no hookups. As more boats showed the ariels slowed. We pulled away from the pack and began to jig live baits to drift and saw a few more fish show, but they ignored our live offerings of herring and whiting.
Fly rod stayed in its tube, I didn't even kid myself. Those fish show no signs of leaving soon, but they are more finicky than the early seaon albies were on the cape. I never saw a single person hook up, but I did see whales, tuna, sharks, cod, haddock, whiting, herring, sandeels and some nice boats...
Oh, and full moon over one shoulder and rising sun over the other--there is no better way to start the day.
p.s. also, Manchester Harbor is so loaded with pogies that you can walk on them....
Just the fact that you *had* the fly rods out there gets my respect. Awsome portrayal of what's out in the great blue beyond!
I keep seeing that famous photo sequence of the bluefin eating the big bluefish as you describe it. I also see the albie pods in my memory and think "what if those were several hundred pounds?"
The "dog sized" ones you mentioned might have gotten a cast or two from me... http://22.214.171.124/images/flytalk/Wilk.gif
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