Refuge and Old Sandwich Harbor, 9/18 - Fly Fishing Forum
Stripers and Coastal Gamefish Stripers, Blues, Inshore tuna!

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Old 10-18-2003, 06:07 PM
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Refuge and Old Sandwich Harbor, 9/18

Overslept so I didn't get a chance to check out a small bayside creek at high tide like I wanted. Went to the light for a look then to the refuge, back to the light then back to the refuge. Didn't know what I wanted to do and I was kinda waiting for any drizzle to clear out. Should of gone for breakfast. With a rare full day to fish I felt no sense of urgency. Morris Island was a cool place this early morning. Not a soul around, no boat traffic and sheltered from the wind. Made the liesurely walk along waters edge at high water and stopped in the cove on the approach to the dike to take a pic. Started seeing wakes all over the place. Had to be small stipers, snapper blues or big pogies I thought. Made a few casts and continued moving. Started seeing nice stripers along the stretch leading to Stage inlet in front of the dunes. This was maybe one to two hours into the drop. Spent an hour trying to get these guys to take a fky to no avail. They didn't seem to be in a feeding mode but would harrass 12 to 15" snappers from time to time. These were cookie cutter 30 to 36 inch fish and they were in so tight I had to stay out of the water. Before I could get frustrated they were gone. Like I said, no sense of urgency. Tried deep eels and flatwings but I wish I tried something big. Hooked up with a blue who promptly cut me off. About 10:00 or so birders, boaters, tourist and other fisherfolks started showing up but up to then it was a special morning.

Stopped at the light and saw Juro's truck. I was tempted to look for him down South Beach but I really needed to eat and get some water.

Stopped to scout Old Sandwich. Never fished there but been meaning to. Interesting spot but an awful lot of people around. No fish though.
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Old 10-18-2003, 08:41 PM
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Ol Sandwich

Seems to have been a big push of bait into the canal last few days...I believe from the beaches. There have been some extraordinary catches of Stripers and good surface activity in the canal.
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Old 10-20-2003, 08:24 AM
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Fred -

I was scouting over the other side from Hardings and saw some big fish as well. Big blues and big bass on big bait. I don't think those were snapper blues, not second guessing you but I'll bet they were big bunker. Did you recall seeing hints of yellow on their fins at all?

The place exploded at night, but the biomass moved out by morning. We found countless stripers moving west and south along the south side Dennis beaches all day long on Sunday... pretty amazing how many fish could be seen and all heading methodically toward Buzzards Bay.

I think the big migration is yet to come. The spring push continued a month past most years, migratory behavior almost until Fathers Day on the cape beaches. It's a late (offset) year and although it'll be fast and furious when the fish get a clue, between now and mid-November it's going to be ridiculous for those who layer up and get in the path of the biomass.

You can bet I'll be there!
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Old 10-20-2003, 10:51 AM
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Up in the shallows the wakes were caused by very blonde 6 to 10" fish. My first guess was bunker. Along the beachfront, under the bluffs, I saw 12 to 15" blues being chased by stripers within 10' of me.

The stripers were all the same size and probably closer to the top of the range I stated. Given my historical fall failures to find fish I was surprised to stumble onto these guys. I had the wrong fly box with me. In another box I had a couple of big Buffy type flys and a big fluffy, maribou laden, Seaducer that Fluff Fix tied for me that I think woulda been just the ticket.
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Old 10-20-2003, 11:07 AM
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Cool!

The bunker I saw were in groups, some in the 8-12" class and others in the 12-14" class. The purse seiners were out netting them along the shoreline from Monomoy to Hyannis. I saw no snapper blues on the Hardings side but there were tons of them up inside the tub just to the east so it stands to reason.

I have seen striper taking out snapper blues before though, in June a few years back. In fact I hooked one of my biggest stripers ever imitating a snapper blue in early summer with a huge fly just east of the Herring River mouth. I know they will eat them because I witnessed the act, which inspired me to tie the fly which resulted in a big time hookup. Lost her though, on the rocks at the west jetty of the river after a battle that went so long people were starting to arrive with beach towels.

In any case, some huge stuff going on down cape on the sound shore!
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Old 10-20-2003, 11:49 AM
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Just to clarify, I didn't see the bass eating the blues, just harrassing. A pod of 3 to 5 snappers would be going by, then accelerate, then I'd see a big bass moving on them.

Another observation - I was waiting for the current to pick up figuring the fish would go into a more aggresive feeding mode. The current never really picked up as I thought it would. Haven't looked at the tide chart to check but it must of been a real small tide.
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Old 10-20-2003, 03:47 PM
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Plus .6 on the low, a dud for sure. Sound shoreline is pretty happenin' lately and with everything shut down and boarded up you can jetty hop for miles and miles...
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Old 10-20-2003, 05:01 PM
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Stage 3.3 foot high is the lowest through March according to Maine Harbors. I guess it was a dud.
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