May 6, 2005

Still not a barn-burner

Frank Dwyer
May 6, 2005

Lot’s of fresh striped bass around the cape and south shore areas, but the north shore has been slower to heat up with water temperatures staying below 50 degrees in most of our area. Hopefully the warm up predicted for the weekend will entice the influx of striped bass we are all waiting for patiently.

Marblehead: (2 hooks) Flounder fishermen continue to catch their limits off Marblehead, mostly using sea worms drifted or slowly retrieved. Skates are showing in more numbers so a float is advised. Fish were reported near the power plant over the last few days. Slow to raise water temperatures have slowed the arrival of our striped friends with only low ruminations that fish have slowly started to show up.

Salem: (2 hooks) The Lead Mills will hopefully see fresh striped bass soon as should the typical early season spots like Winter Island and Kernwood Bridge. Flounder action continues to please fishermen around Salem Harbor. Cod and haddock action at the ledges continues to be decent for the offshore crowd.

Beverly: (2 hooks) Cold water dominates the Beverly coast line so anglers will do better prospecting in the Bass River or Danvers River, as opposed to the ocean front. Hopefully predicted warming trends are accurate and we will see a flurry of activity soon. Light spinning gear or fly rods will work best on these Spring arrivals.

Cape Ann: (2 hooks) Boat anglers targeting flounder along the Manchester-By-The-Sea coastline have done well this past week. Hopeful striper fishermen have been trying the ocean beaches with little success. Many anglers have tried the Little River in Gloucester over the past week, but the fish have been sparse. Hopefully both the Little and Annisquam will heat up in the coming days. Anglers prospecting in the Essex area have also experienced slow fishing with an occasional sluggish striper being taken. Hopefully the Essex River will come alive soon. Cod and Haddock fishing has been fairly consistent for anglers this past week.

Ipswich: (1 hook) Consistent with other areas, the cold water has led to the slow arrival of striped bass. The Castle Neck and Ipswich Rivers are excellent places to search for early season bass. In addition the bass should soon return to Pavilion, Steep Hill and Crane Beach.

Newbury: (1 hook) Some action reported with small school bass in the Parker River, but certainly a percentage of these fish are “holdovers”. Sluggos twitched slowly along the bottom or sparsely tied flies should do the trick.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (1 hook) Shad continue to be caught at Rock’s Village by both shore and boat anglers. Spinning gear with small shad darts work best for these acrobatic fish. Anglers fishing at Deer Island are landing more catfish than striped bass, but that will change soon. Kayak and wading fishermen have been trying their luck on Joppa Flats, but the action has been slow. Anglers fishing the ocean front with bucktail jigs and assorted other lures have reported little activity. Plum Island Point has had anglers targeting bass all week, but the fish have been less than cooperative. There have been some reports of schoolies near the Jetty. The party boats have done well with cod, haddock and an occasional wolffish.

Salisbury:(1 hook) Just like their brethren across the river, anglers fishing from the Salisbury State Reservation have had minor activity when it comes to newly arriving striped bass. The river has been running quite high and there is a large amount of debris floating down river. The ocean front remains quiet.
Seacoast, NH: (1 hook) No major activity to report in southern New Hampshire, however some stripers that wintered over have been plucked from the rivers. Cod and Haddock have been plentiful for those heading to the ledges, while some flounder have been had around Little Harbor in Portsmouth.

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