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Seals Lead the Way to Good Fishing | May 2 Report

Cape Cod Fishing Report May 2, 2012

cape cod fishing report

This was one of the most aggressive bass I have ever caught!

One of the best parts about fishing Cape Cod during May is the solitude.

Last night I had an entire beach all to myself.  Just me, a few nice fish, seals and the birds.  I walked up and down the beach for around 2 miles without seeing anyone else.  Pretty cool!

The weather was slightly better than the night before which was a relief.  It was still overcast but the rain had subsided along with the wind.  The Cape Cod Bay beaches were still getting hit by a brisk northerly wind, so I again decided it'd be best to wait to fish some of my favorite CCB spots-at least until the wind changed directions.

So I hopped in the truck and made the drive to the southside of the Cape.

As I had envisioned conditions on the southside were much better.  There was next to no wind and a nice, slow rolling surf.  I instantly had a pretty good feeling about this trip.

cape cod striped bass fishing report

Can't beat having the entire beach to yourself.

An overlooked aspect of fishing Cape Cod is the versatility that this sandy peninsula offers saltwater fishermen.  The Cape's unique geographical shape makes it possible to find a nice area to fish no matter the conditions.  If the wind is blowing hard from south, then the beaches to north will be more comfortable to fish.  If like yesterday the wind and rain is blowing in from the north, then the southside beaches will be more comfy.

It's hard to beat those kinds of options in the striped bass fishing world.

At first glance yesterday the beach looked rather lifeless.  Fortunately after walking for about 45 minutes and casting fruitlessly, I noticed a seal playing around just offshore.  This was the first seal I have ever seen at this particular beach, so I was not necessarily thrilled.

However I figured that the seal must of been here for a reason.  Maybe he was searching for the same species of fish I was in pursuit of.

I continued walking another 100 yards or so down the beach when I noticed another enormous seal bobbing around just out of casting distance.  I was in the process of trying to get a picture of the mammal when I caught a swirl out of the corner of my eye.  There were bass right at my feet in no more than 2 feet of water!

Of course by the time I put my phone/camera away and got a line in the water the fish had disappeared.  Nevertheless it was a good sign and with the sun about to set I figured I would get another chance.

I walked another 50 yards down the shoreline as the seal curiously watched my every move.  I continued casting as I walked and was able to provoke two half-hearted follows and swirls from what looked to be schoolie bass.  Another good sign!

I had seen some small bait skipping around on the surface so I decided to tie on a slightly smaller pencil popper.  I was initially hoping to find bass and blues chowing down on squid in the surf but it seemed like they were on small bait last night.

A few casts later and POW! A nice bass absolutely hammered the smaller top water plug and came flying into the air.  This fish jumped three times, cartwheeling in the air as if he was a tarpon!  I have only seen a bass jump like this a few times in my life - boy was that an aggressive fish!

For his size this striper put up one heck of a fight.  He took a little line which felt nice - nothing like the 30 and 40 pounders of last September but just as exciting.

I got the bass up onto the sand and he taped out at 30 inches.  Not a monster but perfect for this weekend's clam bake (wasn't planning on having one but I guess I have to now).  The 28-32 inch class fish are by far the best eating size in my book.

It was getting dark and I had a decent walk and drive ahead of me so I decided to make the trek back.  I wouldn't say the action was incredible, but I will say it was very promising especially for May 2.

I watched bass swirl no farther than 10-20 feet offshore throughout the entire walk back to the truck.  I'd say I saw a bass swirling every 50 yards or so.  The activity definitely increased as it got darker.

All in all another really fun early season surf casting trip.  Can't wait to see what tonight brings!

Interested in learning more about the area fished and techniques used?  Consider becoming a MFCC blog member by clicking here.

Existing members can access the extended report by clicking here.

 

Spring Stripers at South Cape

Last night was a lot of fun.  It really is awesome having an entire beach to yourself.  Catching a fish or two is really just a bonus.

South Cape beach in Mashpee is a great spot to check out during the month of May.  I always venture down to South Cape at least once each spring.

The fishing at South Cape can be absolutely incredible during this time of the year.  Last night's fishing was great for sure, but we have had trips to South Cape in the past that have produced dozens of big fish.

Small pencil poppers are a favorite lure of mine.

This beach is most known for its incredible bluefish blitzes.  Nothing beats those days when the blues get schools of squid pinned up against the beach.  The top water fishing can be lights out and it is not unusual to catch 2 bluefish on 1 plug.  In the past I have actually caught a bluefish and a bass on the same plug at the same time!  Can't beat that for spring time excitement.

Last night I chose to walk down to the West towards what I believe is Waquoit Bay.  It's a long stretch of beach so don't try to make the trek to Waquiot unless you are feeling extra ambitious.  I found the best action about mid way from the parking lot to Waquoit.

All of the bass I saw were swirling on small bait in the 2-4 inch range just a few feet off shore.  Every fish I saw was less than 30 feet from the suds.  The cast that I caught the fish with was maybe a 30 foot cast.  It seemed like the bass had these small bait fish pinned in tight to the shore.

As mentioned, the action increased as the sun set.  I saw quite a few bass on the walk back to the truck.  I would estimate seeing one or two swirls every 50 or so yards.

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Awesome Start to the Season | Schoolies and Keepers May 1 Report

april cape cod fishing spots
cape cod fishing report

Our first striper of 2012 was caught using a small white curly tail grub.

I was all sorts of pumped up to get out striped bass fishing yesterday for the first time in 6 months.  The strong wind, rain, fog and nippy temperatures were not going to deter me.  It's May on Cape Cod which means one thing - the bass are back!

I've recently been receiving all sorts of emails and reports from members of the blog, which is really great.  Thanks to your good advice and help, my fishing buddy Mazzola and I were able to piece together a great first striped bass trip of the 2012 season.

Because the wind was howling from the north, I knew that fishing the Cape Cod Bay side beaches would be pretty uncomfortable.  Often times an onshore breeze pushes up big patches of weed tight against the beach.  All these marine plants, plus an "in your face" 20 mile per hour breeze makes fishing very difficult-especially when fishing from shore.

I recently received a Cape Cod fishing report a few days ago from blog member and die hard fishermen Jim in Chicago.  Now you wouldn't expect to hear a recent Cape Cod fishing report from a Chicago-an (not sure if that's a word!) but Jim has roots in Buzzard's Bay.  Apparently a few of his family/friends have been getting into some decent action in the area so I figured it was definitely worth a shot.

cape cod fishing report

Mazzola landing one of the first bass of the year, a 15 inch "micro schoolie."

Before heading out I hopped on Google Earth and started looking around at some potential fishing spots in the area Jim had mentioned.  With Google Earth it is possible to quickly and easily identify areas conducive to holding striped bass.  Using the program I found a nice spot with a deep channel that runs parallel to a popular swimming beach.  To ice the cake I found a public parking lot where we could park the truck-thank you Google!

The weather in Buzzard's Bay was 100 times more enjoyable than the weather on the Cape Cod Bay beaches.  The bay we chose to fish was glass calm and the wind was dead.  On top of that the rain stopped which was appreciated.

As soon as we arrived we noticed that a fly fisherman to our left was hooked up.  After a short battle he landed one of the smallest striped bass I have seen in years - this thing had to be less than one foot in length.  Nevertheless that small fish was a good sign that put a bit more gusto into our casts.

It was not long after when I had a fish boil on my small pencil popper.  I noticed a foot print in the water just behind the popper and one second later SMACK!  Unfortunately I swung and missed on the bass and was quickly  down 0 for 1 on the season.  Eh well, I may have missed that first bass of 2012 but it was awesome to watch him explode on a top water plug.

cape cod fishing reports

Potential new world record?

After another 20 minutes of fruitless casting Mazzola and I decided to head to a new spot just to the south.  A hop skip and a jump later and we were again casting for that highly anticipated first bass of the season.

Mazzola was the first to start registering bumps and taps.  After a few missed fish he finally managed to set the hook into one of the little guys.  After a quick fight he had his first striper of the year.  It was a small fish but a good sign of things to come.

Five minutes later I was able to put my first bend in the pole when a little schoolie inhaled my curly tail grub right in front of my feet.  Mission accomplished.

The sun was setting so we decided to make another move to the Cape Cod Canal for a chance at the first keeper bass of the season.  I did not expect to find any sort of stellar action on big fish at the Canal on such a cold, rainy, foggy evening like last night, but I'm happy to say that we were delightfully surprised.

We put in some good effort but were rewarded with out first keeper striped bass of 2012.  Man that fish hit like a freight train!

At one moment we had decent size stripers swirling right at our feet!  There seemed to be plenty of bait around and pretty decent life for so early in the season...

Interested in learning about the exact spots fished and techniques used?  Then consider becoming a MFCC member by clicking here.

Existing members can access the full extended fishing report by clicking here.

cape cod canal fishing reports

A beautiful first keeper of the year from the Cape Cod Canal.

 

 

 

Buttermilk Bay

The weather over the past couple of days has been tough to say the least.  Good news is that there seems to be more and more fish filtering in as the days progress.

Word from the south is that there are small keepers in most of the estuaries, creeks and harbors dotting the Cape's coastline.  I've also been hearing about bass in Cape Cod Bay and points north.  Everything seems to be happening a week or so earlier this year.

Anyways, last night's fishing was better than expected based on it being super early in the season and lousy weather wise.

The first area we fished was Buttermilk Bay which is located in the upper reaches of Buzzard's Bay.  Buttermilk Bay is renowned for having good early season striper fishing, as well as occasionally good winter striper fishing for holdovers.

The area is relatively easily accessible.  Problem with many of the harbors and creeks in this neck of the woods is that shoreline access is restricted.  Private homes are crammed in so tightly that there is often not much room left for anglers.

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Check out the New MFCC Members Forum

Hey guys,

I just put the finishing touches on the brand new My Fishing Cape Cod members' forum. I've never built a forum before so please hang with me on this one!

I think our forum will, over time, turn into a valuable resource for sharing ideas, fishing reports, tips and all sorts of information. I would like it to someday be the #1 hub for all Cape Cod fishing related activity.

This forum is only available to members of the blog, so if you haven't signed up you must do so in order to view it. I think keeping the forum reserved for members will help us maintain premium quality content, accurate reporting and the like.

The goal of the forum will be simple - help MFCC members catch more fish and have more fun while fishing Cape Cod.

If you are a current member, please take a moment to post a tip, question or report in the forum.

For all the folks who aren't sure whether or not to subscribe, remember that your first month is only $1, and you can cancel your membership at any time.

There will be a lot more to come for 2012 My Fishing Cape Cod members.  This new forum is just the first step!

Tight lines,

Ryan

eCourse 5 | Understanding Tides

The Cape Cod Canal has some of the strongest tides on all of Cape Cod.

During extreme weather situations the current inside the Canal can get cranking to almost scary speeds. It's always important to remain cautious when moving around on the Canal rocks when the tide is cranking-especially if you are wearing boots or waders.

The strong current is the result of differences in water table levels between Cape Cod Bay and Buzzard's Bay. If the water level is lower in Buzzard's Bay, then the Canal's current will move westward. If the water level is lower in Cape Cod Bay, then the Canal's current will move eastward.

When both levels are equal, the current in the Canal will be slack.

Having a firm understanding of the tides will help you locate more stripers, fish areas with more efficiency and ultimately catch a lot more fish.

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eCourse part 4 | Tips on Targeting 40 Plus Pound Bass at the Big Ditch

I'd be lying if I told you that catching a 40 plus pound striper from the Canal happens regularly. For me at least, any bass over 40 pounds is something special.

Catching a 40 pound bass on a plug or jig casting from shore is no doubt much more difficult, than wrangling the same fish from a boat.

And yes I am still waiting on that coveted 50 pounder! Maybe this will be the year it happens for me, we'll see.

Catching a 40 pound bass from the Canal is very challenging. Hooking a 40 pounder in the fist place is pretty rare. Being able to land a 40 pounder at the Canal (a place with jagged rocks, snags and a powerful current) is even rarer.

Yet there are few ways to improve your odds of catching "The Big One" at the Big Ditch.

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Thank you and Good Luck Fishing in 2012!

Hello everyone!

I just wanted to take a second to thank you all for what has been a great experience and a great past year for me.

Since starting this blog 10 months ago I have met and fished with many incredible people.  My charter bookings are up and new opportunities are continuously knocking at my door.

The membership side of the blog is also off to a great start, which is a HUGE help - especially with gas prices at the fuel dock expected to be over $4 this season!  (could it be time to buy a sail boat?)

None of this would have happened had I not had a great base of readers.  You guys (and hopefully a few ladies as well) have been great.  At first I wasn't really sure how this whole "blogging thing" would turn out, however the positive feedback I receive each day from you has really been a huge boost to my self confidence-thank you for that!

I'm really looking forward to doing all I can this summer to help you find and catch some really nice fish.  And please know that in the process you folks will end up helping me as well-probably a lot more than I am able to help you.

If there is anything in particular you would like to see more of on the blog, please just ask.

I have one more busy week ahead of me and then I will be able to start posting fishing reports daily.  I also have some exciting ideas for eCourses and videos, as well as special deals for members of the blog.

I think 2012 will be a great summer for everyone.

Best of luck with your fishing this season!  Be sure to keep me posted on how things are going.

Tight lines and take care,

Ryan

 

 

 

eCourse 3 | Bass Blitz Breakdown

Over the past few decades the Canal has become famous for it's bass blitzes. These are the days when thousands of fish invade the land cut, and feed aggressively on prey such as mackerel, menhaden and herring.

If you are fortunate to get lucky, and happen upon such a blitz, you probably will never forget it.

In recent years during a blitz I won't even fish. Instead I put the rod down and just watch nature do its thing. On these days it can feel as if you are witnessing a Discovery Channel or Planet Earth episode.

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First Keeper Striped Bass of Season Caught at Cape Cod Canal

Many Cape Cod fishermen said the bass would be back early this year.  This past winter was more of an elongated cool start to spring than anything else.  Water temps have been way above normal.   Right now some areas around Cape Cod have water that is in the mid to high 50's.  I'm happy to report that all of those fishermen who predicted an early run of striped bass seem to so far be 100% correct!

I recall past seasons when we caught plenty of small striped bass up in creeks, estuaries and way back in harbors.  Most of these fish were extremely tiny, with a few under 12 inches in length.  Catching micro-schoolies (as we referred t them) was and still is pretty common for the month of April.

On Cape Cod you usually have to wait until May to see any stripers with real size.  The first few keepers are generally on the small side, barely eclipsing the 28 inch recreational limit.

I personally have never caught a keeper striped bass prior to May 1st.  I do know some slick fishermen who have been able to catch fresh migratory keepers in April, however they are generally pretty hard to come by.

That's why I was extremely surprised to hear that a 32 inch keeper striper had been caught this past week in the Cape Cod Canal.

Usually a fish tale like this would bring out the skeptic in me, however the report came from as reliable a source as any-Jeff Miller from Canal Bait and Tackle.

For those who don't know Jeff, he helps to run his family's bait shop - Canal Bait and Tackle.  Needless to say if something interesting happens at the Canal, Jeff usually knows about it.

According to Jeff a young angler managed to wrestle a 32 incher from the Big Ditch just a couple of days ago on April 18th.  Some of the regulars at the shop said the earliest they had ever heard of a keeper taken from the Canal was April 10th, which occurred many decades ago.

There was plenty of mackerel in Cape Cod Bay not too long ago and pogies and herring have all been spotted inside the Canal.  With the latest report of this keeper it seems that the stage is now set for something special to occur at the Canal.  Could we see a pre-May striped bass blitz?

Of course only time will tell for sure.  I think we may be in for a very interesting, and very fun spring fishing season!

If you are new to the blog and want to learn more about catching spring time striped bass at the Canal, be sure to check out this post.

Tight lines and take care,

Ryan