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Fly Fishing @ Night On Cape Cod

Ryan Collins

Wow! It sure was a wild weekend on Cape Cod. The beach chairs were out in force and the party was on.

 I attended an epic wedding and an unreal 30th birthday party, while being surrounded by endless July 4th celebrations.

I met people from My Fishing Cape Cod and had a great time with family and friends. I even took a break from fishing to create these Cape Cod cornhole boards with my friend Jason Mazzola and his awesome family.


The weather also worked out very well.

The night time temps were warm and the day time air was balmy.

At times the wind was breezy, but the skies remained sunny all day long.

I hope you also had a great Independence Day Weekend with your family and friends! 

I also hope you've been able to squeeze in some fishing, and find some solitude, among the fireworks.


My most memorable recent fishing experience happened at night on the kayak. It was my first time attempting to fly fish from the kayak in the dark.

With no idea of what to expect, I knew I would be in for a real battle if I hooked up with a big fish.

I just started fly fishing a couple of weeks ago, so my fly casting ability is still not that great. With all that considered I figured trolling flies from the kayak would be the best strategy during this night fishing trip.

​The trip out to the fishing grounds was quiet, but when I arrived at the spot where I wanted to fish, the water erupted around the kayak. I had spooked what had to of been a 25+ pounder. 

Then I shone my headlamp onto the water and caught glimpse of another quality fish. The bass slowly faded away into the depths, and I estimated her to of been around 36 inches.

The fish were here but I was not getting bit!

Finally after more than hour of trolling flies without a bite, I cut off the fly and tied on a swimming plug.

Instantly I was on with a fish.

I believe these bass would of hit any large swimming plug. A floating Daiwa SP Minnow or Redfin would of been deadly. However it was clear they did not want a slender profile fly.

At this point I still had some good tide left before I expected the bass to disappear from the shallow area which I was fishing.​ I put the plug out behind the boat and began trolling at around 2mph.

It did not take long until I hooked up again!

I brought the bass in close to the kayak. With the striper next to the boat I struggled to get a hold of the fish. The fly rod was simply too long, and I really had to stretch to reach the bass.

I wanted to "crack the code" and figure out what type of fly these fish would bite at night. My gut told me a full bodied, much larger fly would be the ticket.

At the very least, trolling a swimming plug on the fly setup was good practice. I had a lot of fun battling the small bass. They put up a much better fight on fly gear compared to spinning.

New Flies

A couple days later I decided to stop by Goose Hummock in Orleans and consult with Dave Steeves, who is the "go to" fly fishing guy at the shop. After some discussion, both Dave and I agreed it was time for me to test out some new fly patterns.

I explained to Dave the issue with the bass hitting the swimming plug but not my slender flies. Among all the flies at Goose Hummock, we ultimately decided upon the flies pictured below.

I will keep you posted with how things go. I hope to test out these flies at night in the kayak hopefully sooner than later.

Tight lines!


What do you think?​

Let me know
by commenting below 

  1. Looks like a lot of fun! Love the Iced Coffee in the cup holder 🙂

    Getting a fine collection of flies there. Good Luck – will be interested to see how you make out.

    I was up last week having a pizza party on the beach with my family – when I thought I saw a swirl in the water.. grabbed the fly rod and first cast cooked up. Those flies are deadly when you have the right one…

    1. Need that iced coffee to get through the late night. lol

      Nice work bringing your fly rod to the beach pizza party. That is a smart move!

      I will probably get back out there again later this week. I will keep you posted.

      Good luck Steve!

      1. Ryan – I use a “Quik Cast” Rod case for all of my fly rods. It lets me break down the rod fully rigged – and lets me go from secure and stowed – to fishing in less than a minute. If I am on the beach.. my fly rod comes with me. No reason for it not to. 🙂

        1. Awesome, thanks for the tip Steve!

  2. If you hold the rod with one hand at an angle away from you that will bring the fish closer to you. Then you can use your other hand to grab the fish or the leader. This works best with smaller fish.

    1. Cool, thank you Dex for the tip!

      Dave from Goose Hummock also told me they have a 7.5 foot fly rod in stock which could be ideal from the kayak.

      I may give that smaller rod a try soon. Will keep you posted.


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