Rip trip (my version)...... - Fly Fishing Forum
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Old 10-14-2002, 09:33 AM
Dble Haul's Avatar
Dble Haul Dble Haul is offline
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Rip trip (my version)......

Bert and I showed up in the Chatham area about mid-morning on Friday and promptly went to Morris Island. We headed to Stage Harbor, and about 100 yards before the huge bar at the inlet I noticed a nice little rip within a rod's length of shore. We managed to each pull 4 schoolies out of that little stretch, both of us hooking up on our first casts. Fish on the first cast? We deemed it to be a good omen...

We then went to Nauset Angler and chatted with Harry. Bert picked up a pair of Action Optics (supporting two sponsors simultaneously!) and I grabbed one of their nice caps. Bert was in the mood to check out Nauset Beach, and despite Harry's warnings that the conditions would be tough, we thought that it would at least be worth checking out. We parked at Priscilla's Landing and made the loooong (45 minute) walk to the tip of the inlet. There was a nice rip with some conflicting currents, but we didn't hook up. We made the hike back, grabbed a bite, and got some rest.

Saturday morning was full of anxiety.....we had seen a weather forcast that called for calmer conditions, but what does that ever mean? We arrived at the causeway and nobody was there. Then JF showed up, then Fred and Quentin, and finally John and Doc. Since there was no trip out to the island, we all decided to take a walk over to Stage Harbor. The wind was a little bit better over there, but there was no bait or bird activity. Bert and I surmised that we needed to find bait and clean water, which ruled out the surf. Bayside? Off we went. We popped in to see Harry and Bill again, and they confirmed our suspicions that the Bayside was the place to be in those conditions. Bert made another purchase (a new surf rod), and we started to poke around some tidal creeks and estuaries. Fort Hill looked promising, but again there was a lack of bait.

After a late lunch, we arrived in Rock Harbor and were immeditely rewarded with bait and fish. The schoolies were anywhere from 18-24", and there were a couple of token blues thrown into the mix. We had consistent action until sundown, and then sporadic action for another hour after that. Tired and hungry, we knew where we'd start in the morning.

We started in the same spot at dawn. Stripers were working the grass within feet of the bank, and we both caught about half a dozen fish each in short order. Then nothing. We hung around to see the tide drop and reveal structure, and eventually learned why the fish had left so defined channel, just one enormous flat at the mouth of the inlet. We poked around a bit, ate, and caught a nap before mid afternoon when we were there for the last of the incoming tide. Peanut bunker everywhere.....and bluefish. Stripers didn't show until 10 minutes before dark, and we couldn't hook any of them. Bert took one nice blue, and then we started our long haul back to CT.

As disappointing as it was to not go to the Rip, it was a great weekend because we learned more about the area. We walked many miles, mostly in soft sand, and my legs hate me right now. We had some action, and I met even more of the folks here at the Forum. JFBasser, FredA, and Doc was nice meeting you, albiet briefly. And John and Quentin, nice seeing you both again.

You know what I'll be thinking about this winter....
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Old 10-14-2002, 12:37 PM
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Quentin Quentin is offline
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Location: Berkshire County, MA
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Wow! Sounds like you guys found some decent fishing despite the difficult conditions. I've checked out Rock Harbor a couple of times but never gave it much time. I almost went there Saturday afternoon but I went to Sunken Meadow instead. Wish I did hit Rock Harbor as it would have been nice to throw a couple of blues into the mix. Any idea what the story is regarding the trees in the water at Rock Harbor? Are they just a "natural" type of channel markers?

I hope your last sentence doesn't mean that you've given up on the saltwater season for this year! There are probably still some hardtails to be found along the western Rhody and eastern CT shores, along with the usual late-season action along the CT coast. I think another trip to Milford Point is in order, and there's always the November schoolie/shad fest at the causeway in Old Saybrook.

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Old 10-14-2002, 12:54 PM
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Dble Haul Dble Haul is offline
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Q- My last sentence refers to the Rip and its potential monsters.....I haven't hung it up yet, although my fishing time will be at a premium until the end of the season.

I'm not sure about the trees at Rock Harbor. I can tell you that they really don't mark a channel. At the last stage of the outgoing yesterday, we were able to walk right up to them in shin deep water, and it didn't appear to be any deeper than the rest of the flat. Boats just simply don't enter or leave the harbor unless it's near high tide. I waded all the way out beyond the last tree to see if I could find the edge of the was still a ways out there, and when I turned back I saw the sign on the last tree that faces incoming boat traffic: "DO NOT ENTER. POLICE FIRING RANGE AHEAD." What up wit dat??

I have another regret from the weekend. I had my cell phone with me to contact others in the group if we ran into any action, and into Saturday evening I realized that I didn't have anyone's phone numbers! I've gathered from other posts that folks sort of went out in their own directions, but I still would have liked to direct some where we were. Sorry all.

Glad you got into some fish as well, Q. That must have been something to have a crowd cheering you on.

Edit: We took many pictures with disposable cameras. As soon as my friend scans them for me, I'll post a few.

Last edited by Dble Haul; 10-14-2002 at 12:58 PM.
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Old 10-14-2002, 02:40 PM
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striblue striblue is offline
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Sorry to not having been able to contact people but we are all eternal optomist when it comes to weather and outdoor activities... anyway.. I anticipate that the same group will be on the first rip trip of the late May... we will get a date and if the weather cooperates we can schedule on Saturday and one on Sunday.
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Old 10-15-2002, 06:59 AM
Rip Ryder Rip Ryder is offline
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Trees at Rock Harbor

Hi Quentin,

Your answer on the trees in Rock Harbor. The town has used them for years as entrance markers. They are easier to see from off shore and show up nicely on Radar. There is zero room for error entering that harbor, as I am sure you have seen at low tide. Dead trees, cheaper on the tax payers of Orleans.

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Old 10-15-2002, 07:46 AM
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Quentin Quentin is offline
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Thanks Keith. Guess that explains the metal signs on the trees!

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Old 10-15-2002, 09:22 AM
BigDave BigDave is offline
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Hey Guys,

Bummer it didn't work out this weekend but we will hit'em in May.

Sounds like some of you found good alternatives instead

I opted for the short drive to sandwich creek early saturday instead. Blues in the creek early and then pods of sub-legals between the jetties into late morning. Picked up three and then took a nice wipe out on the rocks (those barnacles are sharp!). Wished I had some korkers on. Could only take the howling wind and surf blasting in my face for so long but it was fun to get out and see mother nature doing her thing. Very fishy area.

As any red sox fan will tell you: "there's always next year"


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