August 8 2017

How To Chum & Chunk Striped Bass


Ryan Collins

It's the middle of the summer here on Cape Cod. The beaches are busy and the bridge traffic is backed up!

This summer, one tactic that's worked well for me (even during the middle of the day) has been "chumming and chunking."

As you'll see in the following video, with fresh chum it is very possible to attract an entire school of striped bass literally right to your boat!


Please click play below to watch.

In the yellow box beneath the video My Fishing Cape Cod members can download an in-depth tutorial video with specific information about:

  • How to chum and chunk
  • Gear and equipment for chumming and chunking
  • The #1 most important thing to remember when using this technique

Chumming and Chunking - Tutorial

Members of My Fishing Cape Cod can download an in-depth tutorial video with specific information about:

  • How to chum and chunk
  • Gear and equipment for chumming and chunking
  • The #1 most important thing to remember when using this technique

Not yet a member? You can sign up for 1.00 dollar here.

Tight lines!

  • In your video you mentioned putting a small weight on with a lot of current. I used to fish this way quite a bit in Boston Harbor except for the weight. I would use herring, when they were legal to use, and I would set up on a rock structure. Instead of using spinning gear, I would use a conventional reel with 20lb Mono instead of braid, braid just didn’t float properly. If you get your slick going then just drift your bait and let it free float in the current with the slick you created. The bait would just float over the structure or rock pile and we did very well. Just a thought you may want to try some day.

  • I can’t tell you how helpful this video is for me! I have a boulder field in mind for this summer and the 2 hours before and after high tide helps me understand when to try. If you see this response, I have some basic questions:
    1. Could I use Scup as my chum fish?
    2. Sounds like the line to the leader and leader to the hook – so no swivels?
    a. is that how I should be tying my lures on as well? I have been using clips so I could easily switch them on and off
    3. I would be on a larger boat. Can I anchor in one spot? This would allow me to get close, but then no worry about drifting into the rocks…or do I need to be moving?


    • Hey Rick! Good to hear from you.

      I would recommend using bunker (also called pogies or menhaden) for chum. I would also recommend using mackerel.

      Yes I would recommend tying the leader directly to the hook. The clips work great for lures, but when fishing bait it is best to tie direct to the hook.

      When chumming and chunking, you want to find a productive looking spot and then anchor up. Toss the chum all around your boat, and if there are stripers in the rocks, they will come over and check things out.

      Tight lines!

  • Very cool video! I found it interesting that the bass would wait until the piece of Menhaden was close to the bottom before they would take it. That way they were less vulnerable as they remained within the weed bed.

    I wonder if the bass were of mixed size if the larger fish would be more aggressive, rising to take the pieces before the smaller fish could get them. That is what I would anticipate.

    I would imagine that you could create your own feeding frenzy or mini blitz by gradually increasing the number of pieces dropped and making the pieces smaller.

    Then, if the school was mixed in size, would the behavior of the larger fish change? Would they do what we have always heard that they do, hang out at the bottom waiting for pieces to drift down to them? You have a very interesting opportunity for a mini study of fish behavior with this method.

    This also raises another possibility. We always see videos of top water strikes from above the water. Would it be possible to get video of them from below? That might be fascinating as we see everything from the fish’s perspective.

    • I will have to try it again when larger fish are present. It has been all small fish for me so far this summer while chumming and chunking.

      We did some filming for “My Fishing Cape Cod TV” the other day, and I pretty much had the fish all riled up into a “mini blitz” as you describe. The chunks were gone as soon as they hit the water!

      That was really fun to watch.

      Maybe if I anchor a GoPro camera to the bottom, and then toss chunks right above the GoPro camera I will get some of that footage you mention Dex. That would be super cool.

      I just need a clear, calm, bright and sunny day (plus some larger fish) to run this experiment again!

      • Great info and video. I also like to place very small pieces of chum in a meshed bag and hang it to the side of the boat to have a continuous slick. Seems to work for tuna too.

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