PUBLISHED ON March 17 2024

My First Striper of 2024

by Ryan Collins

It was dark and breezy last night as I made my way down the mid-Cape highway.  There were very few cars on the road, especially compared to the busy summer season.

I was inspired by the recent catches of striped bass that have been posted to the Winter Stripers thread inside our members' forum.  Sitting at home on the couch was not an option, I had to give it a shot!

Needless to say, upon arriving at the kayak launch, I was the only person in the parking lot.  All was quiet, aside from a few rowdy raccoons, a large swan, and the first osprey I've seen this year.

The water this time of year is frigidly cold, so I was very happy to be wearing my dry suit.  

In the unlikely event I was to capsize and fall into the water, at least I would have a fighting chance.  Without a dry suit, you won't last long.

For this trip, I would be fishing the general area shown in the map below.

It felt good to be on the water again.  The wind was cold and refreshing, and it made me feel alive.  The sound of water lapping against the side of my kayak brought a smile to my face.

Upon reaching the spot, I took a look around and saw nothing but nature.  There were a few houses lit up in the distance, but for the most part I was in the wilderness, or about as much wilderness as one can find on Cape Cod in 2024.

I made a long cast into the inky black darkness.  To my astonishment, about a third of the way through my retrieve I felt a slight "tap" on the end of my line. 

"Could that have been a fish?" is what I remember thinking. 

On my second cast I put 100% of my focus into the retrieve.  I could feel the lure (which I'll show you later in this report) pulsating on the end of line as it wobbled back and forth.

That's when it happened.  About midway through my retrieve I felt a sold THUD on the line, so I set the hook, and I was on with my first striper of the year!


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