I was woken just before dawn on Sunday by the sound of a thousand blackbirds on my lawn, in the trees and on the telephone wires.
It seemed as though every one of them was calling, announcing that spring was here and encouraging me to do spring things like spruce up the yard, pull out the bicycles, and go fishing.
This calling aligned well with my plans for the day which included kicking off the 2016 fishing season at the MFCC breakfast.
After a good breakfast at the Brookside Club with my wife and dozens of like-minded MFCC fishermen I set my mind to getting a line wet, and hooking that first striper of the year.
I was going to hit the rocky shores of upper Buzzards Bay at dusk, looking for those early migration schoolies as they search for the inlets to the estuaries where they will lay up for the summer, gorging themselves on tiny baitfish, safe from the jaws of deeper water predators.
Around 5:00 Sunday evening I packed up my rod, a few 1-2 oz. swimming plugs, and a light gear bag. I started my hunt on a north facing rocky shore where I imagined the stiff north wind may have pushed some bait.
North facing shore in upper Buzzard's Bay where I had hoped to catch my first of 2016.
I fished for about 3 hours, trying to punch light lures into the wind and beyond the rocks where I would slowly retrieve through the boulders, hoping to be ambushed by a lurking bass. After picking my way along half a mile of rough shore I called it a night without any sign of fish.
But I felt good. Things felt reasonably fishy, spring-like, and I had just put in a solid fishing effort. Within one day the fishing season had begun and winter was behind me.
Monday at work was a long day as I now have the fishing bug.
Feeling that I wanted more mobility than I was getting from shore I made plans to pull the kayak out of the weeds and rig it up for fishing. I cut out from work a little early and made up some brackets for a paddle rack. After cleaning up the hull I tossed the yak into the car and headed back to the rocky shores.
My old kayak now rigged for fishing. Nothing fancy, but it does the trick.
Again the wind was from the north and I found myself with my hands full managing the kayak in a wind-blown chop while fishing near rocks. Keeping in mind that the water temp was still below 50 degrees and that I was alone I spent the next 2 hours wrestling with the kayak while trying to cast.
Soaked from the waist down, tired and a little discouraged I called it a night just after dark.
After a shower and getting some warm clothes on, I sat with Google Earth and found a potential kayak put-in spot about a mile up into a nearby estuary. I was going to keep pushing hard and my plan for the next night was in place.
Steve O’Malley has been a member of My Fishing Cape Cod since May of 2014. Steve fishes on foot, from the kayak and out on his boat, mostly in the Buzzard’s Bay area. He is one of our top forum posters and we are excited to follow his adventures in 2017!