by Jerry Vovcsko
A sixty-three year old gent from Massachusetts headed on down to the Outer Banks in North Carolina for a bit of vacation a couple weeks ago. He was swimming not far off the beach when a shark attacked him and administered several severe bites. His take on the attack?
"It's like trying to fight off a several-hundred-pound chainsaw with a bad attitude."
With the growing seal population around Chatham beaches on Cape Cod and the increasing number of Great White shark visits the seals attract, it may not be too long before some random tourist has the opportunity to experience the chainsaw-with-bad-attitude analogy in person. Seems like it's only a matter of time.
The Fourth of July weekend just passed was a traffic nightmare as Cape residents have become used to, but things have settled back to normal now and the fishing continues to be productive, especially in such places as Race Point, the Cape Cod Canal, Monomoy and the Elizabeth Islands.
A surprise catch of an early season bonito
has been reported and confirmed this past week but that's got to be an outlier as it's likely to be August before we see the funny-fish arriving in any numbers.
The striper action around Race Pointy continues hot and heavy bolstered by the presence of large numbers of mackerel in the area. Anglers live-lining macs have had great success and there's been an armada of open consoles, kayaks, skiffs and virtually anything that floats congregating up at the tip of the Cape.
Striper action around Monomoy has picked up recently and there's no shortage of school bass in that location. A number of anglers have been employing live eels along the backside beaches at night and some bass in the thirty pound range have been caught around Balston and Head of the Meadow beaches.
The Vineyard is the scene of heavy bluefish action with Menemsha and Wasque delivering double-digit blues. Devil's Bridge has been productive from dusk into the night hours for anglers pursuing striped bass. And the Elizabeth Island chain is alive with stripers now. Pre-dawn is the best bet to tangle with bass on the bite and live eels have produced some Large bass in Quicks Hole on west running tides.
Pretty much anywhere between Tarpaulin Cove and Cuttyhunk
is worth tossing plugs right now. Stripers swarm among the rocks and boulders that line the shore and the trick is to get in tight to the beach with lures…dropping a cast on the beach itself and starting the retrieve from there is an effective method in these parts.
Large bass have moved into the Canal during the past week and the Herring Run was the scene of a couple of forty pound stripers caught from the rip rap. Taking advantage of slack tide to work jigs down deep is effective as well as getting live eels down into the deep holes along the bottom. Be advised that this is likely to result in lost gear from snags on the bottom but the local motto is if you ain't snagging bottom, you ain't fishing right. Local anglers consider terminal tackle losses the cost of doing business in the Canal.
The west side of the Elizabeths has also been productive for striper enthusiasts. Keeper size bass are to be found down along Naushon Island while more school bass hang out up around Woods Hole and the Weepecket Islands. The Weepeckets harbor plenty of tautog and large scup along its rocky bottom so even if the stripers aren't hitting, anglers can fill their coolers with good-eating fish.
Bluefish continue to cruise Nantucket Sound and Nobska Point has its share of the toothy critters in residence. These blues tend to run in the three to four pond range and they'll hit just about anything thrown their way. It's not a bad idea to bend the barbs down on a couple of old, beater plugs and enjoy the action with these lively blues.
And finally, it looks like Red Sox Nation is seeing a resurgence in the Home Team as the Sox are only six games back with a three game series on tap with the front-running Yankees coming up this week. Prospects for the season looked bleak a while back but the pitching's solidified lately and the lads of summer have started to hit. Could it be another World Series run coming up?