December 27, 2006

Move Over Deer Cam, here's Africam!!!

While the deer cam concept was fun, we are now on to bigger and better things. Africam
provides some of the most compelling video on the web in my opinion.

The site is brought to us by and is providing live video of Nkorho Pan, which is a natural water hole in the prestigious Sabi Sands Private Game Reserve, in South Africa. Nkorho pan is named after Nkorho bush Lodge which gets it name from the Shangaan derivative for the call of the yellow-billed hornbill, a common and unusual looking bird from this part of Africa. I've seen hyena's, elephants, lions, gazelle and numerous other creatures. A small warning, you are likely to see the "wonders of nature" on this cam, including lower parts of the food chain becoming just that, food.

Enjoy and Happy New Year!

November 1, 2006

Deer Cam!!

This is an interesting concept. Drop 200 pounds of corn a week, set up a camera and lights, and see what come's around. I've seen a few doe's hanging around and a racoon so far. The Cam is located in Central, New Jersey.
The Deer Cam is brought to you by Real Deal Hunting Chat

September 15, 2006

Fall Feed is On!

Frank Dwyer

The weather feels like autumn, and the fishing is starting to fit the season. Striped Bass and Bluefish continue to feed aggressively in North Shore waters, as the offshore fishery has also been heating up.

Bluefin tuna, cod, haddock and pollock are all in play as the fishing season gets ready for the final death rattle.

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Fishing from the Neck continues to be hot as striped bass and bluefish have been taking most offerings. Anglers fishing the rocks at night have found keeper-size bass willing to take live eels and large plugs.

Salem: (4 hooks) Salem Harbor and the area around the Misery Islands have been producing good numbers of bass and bluefish. Trolling tube-n-worms as well as using large plugs tossed into the rocks has been very productive. As usual, larger bass are being taken at night.

Beverly: (4 hooks) The fishing has been terrific around Beverly Harbor as well off West Beach. Striped Bass and bluefish continue their aggressive feeding habits in preparation of the Fall migration. Metal lures, sluggos and popping plugs have all been quite productive.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) The Manchester and Magnolia coastline has been fishing quite well over the last several days as anglers have found large bass along the rocky coast. Fishing around Wingaersheek Beach and Good Harbor in Gloucester has also been good with large bluefish and stripers in the mix. Large bluefish have also been taken from the breakwater to off Halibut Point. The school bluefin tuna bite has been somewhat in consistent but most offshore types agree that the southwest corner of Stellwagen Bank has been the best waters to target. Party boats have done quite well for cod and haddock this past week.

Ipswich: (4 hooks) The area around Pavilion Beach has been loaded with bluefish and bass as anglers have found these fish to take most offerings. The fish have been keying in on small peanut bunker and sand eels, so lures and flies that resemble those baits are working best.

Newbury: (4 hooks) The Parker River NWR continues to provide excellent opportunities for anglers as fish have been taken from most Parking Lots, as well as from Sandy Point. Plum Island Sound has also seen good action for
bass and blues.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks) There are plenty of striped bass in the Newburyport area as smaller bass have been feeding on top during the daylight hours and larger bass coming at night, especially for anglers using eels on Joppa Flats. The ocean front has seen several days of bluefish and stripers available to surfcasters working the beach, while anglers in boats have found larger bass at the mouth of the Merrimack on the outgoing tide. Party boats have found ground fish in closer to shore over the last week.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Bass and bluefish have been close to shore and anglers have landed fish from both Salisbury Beach and the shores of the State Reservation. These fish are actively feeding and while bait can still work, plugs and lures have been quite productive all week.

Seacoast, NH: (4 hooks) Bluefish are still thick from Hampton to Portsmouth and striped bass have been feeding heavily in preparation for their migration south. Many bluefish have been in both Great and Little Bay, and are taking most top-water and metal offerings. Several bass surface feeds have been happening off the Rye and Portsmouth coast, with good action in the Piscataqua as well.


Fishing surface lures like Danny Plugs, Needlefish, Atom Poppers and the like is more of an art-form than most anglers realize. You need to make these lures “dance” across the surface with erratic movements like the injured baitfish they are intended to mimic. Work on your retrieve method to land more fish.

September 7, 2006

As September begins, fishing continues to please anglers on the North Shore of Massachusetts

Frank G. Dwyer
September 7, 2006

While Tropical Storms made the last week difficult for offshore anglers, things have calmed down and the fall migration is imminent.

Fishing for Bass and Bluefish slowed during last weeks stormy weather, however the action has begun to heat up again on the North Shore. Bluefin tuna fishing has been good from just off Cape Ann to Stellwagen Bank.

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Fishing from the Neck at Lighthouse Point has been quite productive for anglers using cut bait, eels and large plugs. Striped Bass to 35 inches have been taken this week. Devereux Beach continues to deliver both bass and bluefish action to surfcasters.

Salem: (4 hooks) Silversides have been in Salem Harbor and the surrounding river systems and that has kept fishermen happy. Bass and bluefish have both been feeding on the surface and anglers have done well with smaller flies and 4-6” sluggos. Larger bass have been taking live eels at night from Winter Island and around the Misery Islands.

Beverly: (4 hooks) The Beverly Fishing Pier and Danvers River have both been offering consistent fishing action for bass, with keepers coming in mostly at night on cut bait or eels. West Beach continues to see surface feeds earlier in the morning.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) Bluefish and bass have been feeding on top just off Coolidge Point in Manchester-by-the-Sea. Further north, you will find Magnolia offering similar action for blues and bass as fly fishermen and spin anglers alike have been having good luck. Large bluefish have been thick throughout the waters of Gloucester as anglers trolling and plugging have landed fish over 10 pounds. Schoolie bass have been in close to shore feeding on baitfish off most beaches around Gloucester and have been taking plugs, plastics and metal offerings. Anglers in search of bluefin tuna have found some fish closer to the Cape than in weeks past, however much of the action remains around Stellwagen. Silversides have been all over the Essex River and with that, bass fishing has been good for school-sized bass and the occasional keeper in the mix.

Ipswich: (4 hooks) Silversides have been in large numbers in Ipswich waters enticing bass and allowing anglers some excellent fishing in and around Ipswich Bay. Fishing from Crane and Steep Hill beaches has also been good as fly fishermen using small silverside imitations have done quite well.

Newbury: (4 hooks) Sandy Point and Plum Island Sound have been home to numerous surface feeds this week as fish were feeding on small silversides. Some larger fish have been in the mix, especially around Sandy Point. The Parker River NWR continues to produce good numbers of bass, especially for bait fishermen.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks).Schoolie bass have been surface feeding from Deer Island to Joppa Flats on moving tides early in the morning. Small flies and un-weighted sluggos have worked well. Drifting the outgoing tide at the mouth has continued to produce keeper-sized bass for anglers drifting bait and large buck-tail jigs. Bluefish have been available from the South Jetty to Emerson Rocks for boat anglers, but lately have seemed to be just out of reach of surfcasters. Party boats have had good fishing despite the storms over the last week.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Fishing from both Salisbury Beach and the State Reservation have been providing steady action for smaller striped bass and some bluefish. Bluefish have been abundant to boat fishermen with fish being taken from the North Jetty to Hampton.

Seacoast, NH: (4 hooks) Hampton Harbor has been fishing well for smaller bass as anglers fishing clams and cut bait have had success with fish to 25 inches. Bluefish have also been just outside Hampton Harbor all the up to Kittery Point. North Hampton Beaches as well as Odiorne Point in Rye have also produced good bass and bluefish action for the shore-bound angler. Bluefish have been thick in Little and Great Bay, as the fish have been chasing pogies. Striped bass have been cooperating with anglers off Pierce Island as well as at the mouth of the Piscataqua while flounder fishing seems to be on the up-tick off Kittery Point.


When drift fishing in a rapid current—especially in a lighter boat—you can whisk past the action if you don’t take action. If you utilize a “drag bucket” by tying a 5-gallon bucket off a stern or bow cleat (depending on current and wind) and allowing it to fill, your drift will be slowed allowing you to enjoy more time over the bite. Experiment with a number of holes drilled in the bottom of the bucket to fine tune your drift.

August 31, 2006

Labor Day Weekend Should Prove to be a Good One for North Shore Anglers

Frank G. Dwyer
August 31, 2006

With the start of Labor Day and the looming Fall Migration not far behind it, anglers should be putting their time in on the water as fishing has been quite good this past week.

Striped Bass and bluefish continue to provide good action for in-shore anglers while bluefin tuna fishing is definitely on the up-tick for anglers heading offshore. Cod, haddock and pollock fishing has also been decent for anglers in search of table-fare.

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Marblehead Neck has been fishing quite well this week with bass and blues pushing bait into the rocks. Large to medium wooden plugs as well as swimming lures have been producing for anglers. Anglers have also had good luck off Devereux Beach with fresh cut bait and clams.

Salem: (4 hooks) The waters around Salem have come alive with bass and bluefish feeding on the surface over the last few mornings in the harbor and just outside. Fishing off Winter Island has also proved productive for blues and bass.

Beverly: (4 hooks) Striped bass have been feeding on top off West Beach as well as around the islands. Larger pass have been taking whole or cut bait in the rocky outcroppings as well as picking up trolled tube-n-worm rigs.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) Singing Beach and White Beach have been producing legal bass at night on eels, clams and other baits. There have been bass surface feeds just outside Magnolia harbor as well as around Kettle Island this past week. Surface feeds in the Annisquam this past week have kept anglers happy with mid-sized striped bass. Big bluefish continue to be just outside the breakwater as well as outside Lane’s Cove as well as off Halibut Point. Still no consistent reports of bluefin tuna close to the Cape, but anglers are still finding them in around the Southwest corner of Stellwagen Bank.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Large surface feeds have been happening all week as large bass key on bait with birds overhead near the Ipswich Yacht Club and also at the mouth of the Ipswich River. The Castleneck River has also been home to surface feeds with larger bass and blues in the mix.

Newbury: (4 hooks) Parking lots 1, 6 and 7 have been quite productive for bluefish and striped bass for both bait and artificial fishermen. Early morning has been best for fish in close to shore. Plum Island Sound has also been fishing quite nice with steady pick of blues and stripers.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks) Fishing around Newburyport continues to please anglers as striped bass and bluefish have been abundant. Anglers drifting both the outgoing and incoming tides on Joppa Flats have found cooperative shoolie bass on most drifts. Bluefish continue to carouse just outside the mouth of the Merrimack and while drifting with bait on the outgoing tide has produced some large keeper bass. Party boats continue to find good action for cod, haddock and some pollock.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Angler’s fishing from Salisbury Beaches have found small stripers in close in the wash in the pre-dawn hours. These fish have been taking small flies from long-wanders and small popping plugs from spin casters. Bluefish have been trolled up off Salisbury Beach in the 40-60 foot range.

Seacoast, NH: (4 hooks) The Seacoast is fishing nicely these days as peanut bunker have been in the waters and enticing bass close to shore. The fishing has been especially good around Portsmouth as bass and bluefish have been corralling the bunker at the mouth of the Piscataqua. New Castle and Portsmouth are also producing good numbers of flounder.


Many bait anglers fish their mackerel, herring or pogies by “chunking” them. This is an effective way of fishing, but for even more bends in the rod, considering filleting those baits so that you can “thread” the filet onto the hook allowing a “tail” to wiggle in the current providing additional reasons for fish to hit.

August 25, 2006

Fishing Continue to Please North Shore Anglers

Frank G. Dwyer
August 25, 2006

Striped bass fishing has been quite productive throughout the north shore as bass above 20 pounds have been landed from Marblehead to Portsmouth this past week. Bluefish remain prevalent and bluefin tuna, some legal sized, have moved in off Stellwagen Bank, while cod and haddock fishing has been decent.

The annual Leo Almeida Memorial North Shore Striped Bass Tournament is slated for Labor Day weekend and will include shore, boat and junior categories. The tournament benefits North Shore food pantries. For information on joining the fun pick up an entry form at most North Shore Bait and Tackle shops or by visiting .

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Bluefish and striped bass have kept anglers busy from shore and boat around Marblehead. Fish are keying on eels at night from the Neck as well as 9” Sluggos. Bluefish have been hitting trolled umbrella rigs as well as deep swimming lures.

Salem: (3 hooks) Bluefish continue to feed just outside the harbor and anglers have been taking the choppers on both top-water plugs and by trolling lures and umbrella rigs. Larger bass have been taken at the Salem/Beverly Bridge at night this week.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Feeding bass have been on the surface just off West Beach and around the islands over the past week. Fly anglers using small poppers and sliders have had fun with schoolies, while larger bass have been taken at night on Eeels. Fishing from the State Fishing Pier continues to provide good bass action for bait anglers.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) Bluefin tuna are active off Stellwagen and Tillies, but have been a bit slow closer to the Cape. Good bass and bluefish action along the Manchester, Gloucester and Rockport beaches and both bait and artificial fishermen have found bass close to shore. Bluefish continue to be landed just outside the breakwater in Gloucester and larger bass have been taken in deeper water off Halibut Point. The Essex River has been fishing well for smaller striped bass over the past week. Party boats have done well for Cod, Haddock and Pollock.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Surface feeding bass have been taking top-water plugs at the mouth of the Ipswich River over the past week. In addition, anglers fishing from shore at Steep Hill and Crane Beach have found good bass fishing, with fewer sunbathers and no greenheads!

Newbury: (4 hooks) Bluefish and striped bass have been fairly active in both the Parker River and Plum Island Sound. Anglers have been landing fish on larger sluggos rigged on lead heads and small top-water plugs. Larger bass have been taken early in the morning from the beaches of the Parker River NWR.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks) Fishing around the Port continues to please anglers as bass and bluefish have been taken from the Route 95 Bridge to the ocean beaches. Small bluefish have been taking small top-water plugs around Deer Island down to the Gillis Bridge. Bass have been taking small baitfish imitations from fly fishermen and sluggos, top-water plugs and metal offerings from spin anglers. Some larger bass have been taken off the beaches by anglers fishing with fresh ocean hearing and clams. Offshore, anglers in search of bluefin tuna have been heading south to the waters off Cape Ann and out to Stellwagen in search of these so called “footballs”.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) There has been decent bass fishing from the shore of the State Reservation has been pleasing bait anglers as keeper size bass have been taken on the end of the outgoing tide. Occasional “bite offs” is proof positive that bluefish are also patrolling the river.

Seacoast, NH: (4 hooks) Good fishing from the beaches of North Hampton and Rye as Striped Bass have been feeding close to shore. Bluefish have invaded both Great and Little Bay in the Portsmouth area and anglers are catching them on most offerings. Larger bluefish have been at the mouth of the Piscataqua River, with some larger stripers in the mix as well. Striped Bass and bluefish have also been taking trolled tube-n-worm rigs out around the Isle of Shoals.

Tip Of The Week:

Many anglers utilize chum to attract fish, but often anglers don’t utilize their chum slick for maximum success. Once you have a good chum slick set up and are ready to utilize live or cut bait, don’t use any weight or a leader. Tie your hook directly to your line and free spool the bait in your slick. Remember, no weight is needed as the chum slick is attracting the fish to compete for food on the top of the water.

August 18, 2006

Depends on the day, but big fish still available

Frank G. Dwyer
August 18, 2006

It may be getting steamy again, but the cool down last weekend certainly helped the fishing in the waters I was fishing in.

Anglers have found larger striped bass cooperating at night around most of the north shore while bluefish and flounder continue to be caught. School bluefin tuna reports are still sparse, but sightings have increased over the last few days.

Marblehead: (4 hooks) Peanut bunker have been enticing bass close to shore over this past week with many smaller bass being landed and some keepers. Small baitfish flies have been landing fish for fly anglers while popping plugs and swimming lures have been catching fish for spin anglers. Bluefish have also been quite active just outside the harbor.

Salem: (3 hooks) Bluefish to 8 pounds have been in and just outside of the harbor and anglers have been having fun with them on light spin tackle. Larger striped bass have been around Winter Island at night with bait anglers scoring on cut bait, worms and eels.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Early morning anglers have found bass surface feeding near West Beach as well as around the islands. While these fish have mostly been in the 20”-26”, they have been quite active in taking most offerings. The Beverly Fishing Pier continues to attract bait anglers at night with some keeper bass being taken.

Cape Ann: (4 hooks) Peanut bunker have showed up around the Cape and that has helped the in-shore fishing. Manchester-by-the-Sea and Magnolia has seen surface feed as stripers and blues chased the bunker close to shore and anglers are landing them on most offerings. Large bluefish have been active off Halibut point and anglers trolling large, deep swimming lures (Rapala Magnums) have done well in 80-100 feet of water. A few school bluefin tuna sightings and landing have been reported offshore, but there has been no consistency. Party boats have been able to put their patrons on good amounts of cod and haddock and evade the dogfish by moving frequently.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Small schoolies have been seen surface feeding off Crane Beach and fly anglers have been taking them on small clouser’s and deceiver’s and spin

casters taking them on small popping plugs and kastmasters.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Fishing from the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge has improved this week as anglers have had good luck for bass and blues. Bluefish have been chasing bait into the wash at Parking Lot 1, while bass have been keying in on clams and worms. The Parker River has provided decent action for bass at night while bass and blues have been somewhat spotty in Plum Island Sound.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (4 hooks) Bass and bluefish have been more active this week, with rumors of small bluefin tuna in the river echoing from local bait shops! Bass have been taking sluggos and flies from anglers drifting the outgoing tide from the AYC to Woodbridge Island. Larger bass are being taken by anglers drifting the mouth with ocean herring or mackerel. Bluefish have been taken just outside the mouth under clouds of birds as well as by anglers trolling deep swimming lures and umbrella rigs. Some flounder and fluke are also being taken just off the beach as well as in the river.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Bluefish have been taken early in the morning off the Salisbury beach as well as the Jetty off the State Reservation. Striped Bass have been more active for anglers fishing the Merrimack across from Plum Island Point, with fish taking both cut bait and clams.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Rye and North Hampton Beaches have had an increase in striper action over the last week as anglers fishing from shore and boat reported good action for keeper sized bass. Bluefish have thickened up
around Portsmouth with choppers taking most offerings at the mouth of the Piscataqua as well as into Little and Great Bays. Flounder fishing has also improved for anglers in New Hampshire as ground fishing has been steady for cod and haddock even with dogfish hounding the party boats.

Tip of the Week:

Poor knots are likely one of the top three reasons for losing a fight with a fish. If you’re not up on the best connections for different methods of fishing and lures, do yourself a favor and go to any bookstore or marine store and pick up a book on fishing knots. There are many resources available on the internet as well including:


More Knots

August 3, 2006

Heat Continues its Grip on Region and Anglers

Frank G. Dwyer
August 4, 2006

As a New Englander, I don’t often complain about the heat, because once winter is here we will be wishing for the warm weather, but this heat is making us anglers work overtime.

Bluefish and flounder remain for the persistent day-time angler and bass have been much more cooperative after dark this past week. Tuna have yet to make a large showing in our area as Party Boats fight through the dogfish to get to the Cod and Haddock.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Large bluefish continue to take most offerings from anglers from boat and shore along the Marblehead coast, while bass fishing from the Neck at night has found larger bass close to shore.

Salem: (3 hooks) Anglers continue to fish from Salem Willow Pier, but daytime pick ups are slow at best. Larger bass have been taken from Winter Island at night and bluefish continue to be available to anglers in and around Salem Sound.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Flounder are still being caught off the Beverly coast. Anglers do better drifting with sea worms as bait rather than anchored. Bass action is mostly at night, with larger bass being taken from the Beverly Fishing Pier and around the islands.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) The water off Manchester-by-the-Sea and Magnolia has followed the pattern of most of our area with bluefish showing during the day and bass becoming more active at night. Some larger bass have been found in the deeper water columns off Halibut and Eastern Point while bluefish and dogfish have been wreaking havoc. Boat fishermen have been looking for school bluefin tuna from Thachers Island to Stellwagen, with little success. Cod and Haddock fishing remains somewhat steady even while fighting off the dogfish.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Small bluefish have been off the beach at Crane and Steep Hill beaches early in the morning the past week. Striped Bass fishing has slowed for daytime anglers, but on the positive side, greenheads have thinned out considerably.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Bluefish and bass have been taken in the early morning from the Parker River NWR as anglers
have been taking fish on top-water plugs, metal and bait. Fishing in the Parker River has slowed with only sporadic bass activity reported over the last week.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Pre-dawn hours have seen small bass rising on the top of the Merrimack River from Cashmans Park to Joppa Flats. As soon as the sun is up, the fish vanish. Fishing at night, just off the channel, from the AYC moorings to Woodbridge Island, bass have been taking live eels and sea worms as well as clams and cut mackerel. Drifting the mouth of the Merrimack on the outgoing tide with either whole or chunk mackerel has delivered some big fish to anglers willing to deal with the boat traffic and chop. Larger bluefish have been taking trolled umbrella rigs and deep swimming lures
from just outside the mouth and all along the beachfront. Party Boats continue to deliver Cod and Haddock by moving frequently to outsmart the dogfish.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Bluefish have been hanging around the North Jetty off Salisbury as they await easy meals at the mouth of the river. In addition, trolling from Salisbury to Seabrook has found decent sized blues taking trolled deep running lures.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Bluefish from Seabrook to Portsmouth has been the most reliable fishery over the past week for the Granite State. Anglers fishing in the Rye and Portsmouth areas have found bass cooperating at night, especially on eels. Larger bluefish have been taken at the mouth of the Piscataqua as well as around the Isle of Shoals.

Tip of the Week:

Trolling is a great way to target fish; however it can cause problems with line twist. To get the twist out of your line, while motoring slowly, drop rod tip and line into the water and put your reel on “free-spool”. Allow all the affected line out and troll with nothing attached to the end of the line. In a short time your line twist problems will be over.

July 28, 2006

Hot Weather Continues to Keep Fish in Deep Water

Frank G. Dwyer
July 28, 2006

With the Commercial Striped Bass season well underway, you’ll find extra company on the water with you as the pro’s look to fill their quota.

Bluefish continue to patrol the waters of the North Shore as some 15+lb blues have been landed this week. Striped Bass fishing during the day has been somewhat inconsistent with bait fishermen doing best, while the best bet for a hog is still at night.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Flounder have been abundant just outside the harbor as anglers have been taking their limit. Bluefish continue to take pleasure in wreaking havoc on your lures as some large blues are in the waters around the harbor as well as the Neck.

Salem: (3 hooks) Bluefish and bass have been taken from Winter Island this past week even as the summer doldrums seem to be settling in. Around Baker Island, larger bass have been taken at night as fish have been taking larger top water plugs as well as live-lined eels.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Bait anglers fishing from the State Fishing Pier in Beverly have found bluefish, bass and flounder all willing to take their bait. Sea worms baited on a fish-finder rig with a small float has worked best for flounder, while cut mackerel and clams have been catching blues and stripers.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Larger bass have been off Eastern Point and Halibut Point in deeper water, with smaller bass being the norm closer to shore. Much as with the rest of the region, night time is proving more successful for those looking for larger bass, with eels certainly the bait of choice. Bluefish continue to be cooperative with anglers from the beaches of Gloucester as well as just outside the breakwater. School bluefin tuna have not showed in numbers offshore just yet, but the fishery should improve over the next 10 days. Ground fishing has been somewhat consistent with market-size cod and haddock being taken by Party Boats.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Bluefish have taken up residence at the mouth of the Ipswich River as well as off Steep Hill beach and Crane beach. On Wednesday, boat anglers were treated to a top water blitz at the mouth with bluefish
crashing bait on the surface. Bass fishing at night from the Ipswich beaches has found larger bass taking eels and cut bait.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Bluefish have been taken in the mornings from the Parker River NWR as parking lots 1, 6 and 7 have been attracting anglers. Anglers trolling off Emerson Rocks to Sandy Point have found larger bluefish willing to take most offerings.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Finicky fish have been swirling on top of the Merrimack all week from the Gillis Bridge to Woodbridge Island, but have been hesitant to take most offerings. I did manage a few fish on a un-weighted sluggo drifted on the top, but other than that, bait has been the rule of the day and night. The ocean front has seen bluefish close to shore in the mornings and larger fish in deeper water falling for deep swimming lures. Plum Island Point has been producing keeper size bass, mostly on bait, but the larger fish have been hitting sporadically. Party boats continue to fight through dogfish to get their patrons some cod and haddock.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Bluefish have been showing up just off Salisbury Beach in the morning this past week as both shore and boat anglers have landed fish in the 8-12 pound range. Fishing from the State Reservation continues to provide bait anglers with somewhat steady action for school sized bass with keepers being landed on occasion.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) There have been mackerel hanging around the mouth of the Piscataqua as well as out by the Isle of Shoals, and large bluefish and some bass have been feasting on them. Further south, Hampton and Seabrook continue to offer good bluefish opportunities during the day and good bass action on eels at night.

Tip of the Week:

Saltwater, as we all know, can corrode metals quite quickly. It’s important to take the extra 10 minutes after every saltwater fishing excursion to rinse off your reels, rods and lures with fresh water. In addition, reels should be checked for proper lubrication every 3rd trip or so, to ensure your gear will operate as intended and prevent you from costly replacements.

July 20, 2006

Heat Wave Sends Fish to Deeper Water

Frank G. Dwyer
July 20, 2006

Hot weather sent striped bass to cooler, deeper waters this week, while bluefish have become more active with some 10-15 pound fish in the mix.

Dogfish have also showed up in numbers and are hindering the fishing for cod, haddock and cusk. Tuna have been seen out by Stellwagen Bank, but have yet to show in big numbers.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Mackerel have become scarce around Marblehead, but anglers are still doing well for bass with cut bait, mostly at night. Bluefish have been quite active during the day. Flounder fishing is decent just outside the harbor.

Salem: (3 hooks) Anglers fishing around Bakers Island have found decent amounts of bass. The fish have been taking eels at night as well as cut bait. Salem-Beverly Bridge has also been producing bass for anglers at night. There are plenty of bluefish for the taking around Salem.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Flounder fishermen are being annoyed by numbers of dogfish, so it’s tough going. Bluefish have been carousing all along the Beverly and are quite fun to catch on light action rods. Striped Bass fishing around the islands off West Beach has been sporadic, with more bass coming at night.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Manchester-by-the-Sea anglers have found schoolie bass in the rocks along the shore and they are taking both small plugs and flies. Bluefish are quite available as anglers have been catching blues to 15 pounds around the cape. In Gloucester, bluefish have been quite active just at the entrance to the harbor and anglers trolling deep running swimming lures and tube-n-worm rigs have done quite well. Off Halibut Point, dogfish continue to annoy anglers using bait, but some bass are being taken, along with bluefish. Rockport Beaches have been producing bass for anglers, especially at night. The Essex River has slowed down considerably, with only sporadic catches being reported. Party boats have had decent fishing over the last week, but need to keep moving as dogfish are in our waters in numbers.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) There is no shortage of bluefish in Ipswich Bay as anglers are catching the fish on top water plugs as well as trolled swimming lures. Bluefish have also been landed from Pavilion and Steep Hill Beaches, while striped bass have headed for deeper waters.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Anglers itching for new sand to explore can now fish from Parking Lot’s 1, 6 and 7 at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Bluefish have been hitting close to shore in the morning as anglers have been having fun catching these fish from the Beach. The Parker River is still producing bass, but mostly at night.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Fishing behind Carr Island and in Town Creek produced some nice sized bass on top water plugs and eels for this columnist a few nights this past week. In addition, anglers anchoring up and using bait by the Gillis Bridge have found decent sized bass at night. Joppa Flats has been somewhat sporadic as fish have been quite evident, but somewhat finicky. The best bet is eels at night on the flats. Bluefish have been taken from the shore of the front beach on Plum Island and some bass have been taken at night, mostly on clams and worms. Plum Island Point has also been providing decent action for bass and bluefish. Trolling from the south jetty to Emerson Rocks has found decent sized bluefish for boat fishermen. Party boats have been fighting through the dogfish, but are still finding some cod, haddock, cusk and wolf fish.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Fishing from the State Reservation banks of the Merrimack has offered a decent mix of bass and bluefish for surfcasters. Trolling from the North Jetty up to Hampton has seen decent action for bluefish in the 8-12 pound range.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Bluefish have made their way to the Granite State and are being caught by anglers from Seabrook to Portsmouth. Top water plugs, tubes and umbrella rigs are all taking the blues. Bass fishing has slowed a bit, but fishing the rocks around Hampton and Rye has produced bass for anglers, especially at night. There has been some bass activity in the lower Piscataqua and around the Navy Yard, but mostly sub-legal fish being landed. Larger bass and bluefish have been taken around the Isle of Shoals.

Tip of the Week:

When eel fishing, hook the eel directly through the lower jaw, then bring the hook up through the snout. In addition, eels can make quite a mess of your leader and line, so a little stretch goes a long way. Prior to hooking the eel, gently stretch the eel so that they are not in full wiggle mode when baiting your hook.

July 14, 2006

Fish still cooperating for those in the know

Frank G. Dwyer
July 14, 2006

Unsettled weather combined with heat has made for tough going for anglers, but persistent fishermen are still putting fish in the boat.

Fishing at night is becoming the best option for large bass, while schoolie bass and plenty of bluefish are available for the daytime crowd.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) While it may not exactly be the summer doldrums, fish have become a bit picky in the waters around Marblehead. Anglers fishing the beaches at night have reported decent catches on both live bait (eels) and chunk bait. (mackerel) Soft plastics, popping plugs, or swimmers tossed along the rocky shore at night have also produced fish for persistent anglers. Fish are still being landed around the Harbor, Light House Point and Castle Rock, you just need more patience than earlier in the season.

Salem: (3 hooks) It seems things have slowed down around Salem for bass fishermen, with the stripers becoming harder to find. Anglers getting out before dawn or after dark have had better luck. There were however reports of good fishing in close to the rocks off Baker’s Island earlier in the week. Cut bait has been working best. The Danvers River has been slow. Flounder have been available, but you’ll need to fight through numbers of dogfish to get them.

Beverly: (3 hooks) There have been some reports of bass surface feeds off the Beverly coast this past week, but mostly small fish reported. Shore fishermen have reported slower activity off West Beach and the action seems to have slowed in the harbor as well. Some bluefish activity has at least allowed anglers to feel the bend of the rod.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Manchester-by-the-Sea and Magnolia has seen the fishing action slow over the last week, but the fishing off Gloucester and Rockport has been good. There have been reports of mackerel showing up in the waters again, which is good since the bass should be in pursuit. Schools of small pollack have also been in close to shore. The Annisquam River and the Essex River, and surrounding waters have been slower this week. Dogfish continue to annoy anglers looking for cod and haddock, but party boats are still returning with good catches.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Reports from Crane Beach and Steep Hill Beach have had a few surface feeds over the last week with the bass chasing sand eels in close to shore. Fly anglers tossing small epoxy sand eel imitations and Ray’s fly have done well, as have spin fishermen using popping plugs. Some bluefish have been around the mouth of the Ipswich River.

Newbury: (3 hooks) If you can stand the Greenheads, then Plum Island Sound is a good option as a good mix of blues and stripers have been landed over the past week. Anglers fishing from Sandy Point have found good surface action early in the morning.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Fishing remains steady around the Merrimack River estuary. Upriver, anglers have been scoring big bass on the higher tides off Carr and Eagle Islands. Deer Island has been a popular place for shore bound anglers in search of bass. Joppa Flats has been OK over the last week, with bait anglers seeming to out fish all others. Boats anchoring off the Toothpick and Badger Rocks have also done well drifting sea worms and cut bait just off the bottom. Anglers have also reported landing small fluke over the past week. The ocean front has also been home to several good fish, caught on both bait and lures, with a few bluefish in the mix. The party boats are still bringing in good numbers of cod and haddock.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) The Salisbury beach front has been slow during the day for the most part, but anglers fishing the early morning hours and after dark have been tallying some decent sized bass. Buck tail jigs, live eels and cut bait have all been working well along with sand eel imitations for fly fishermen. Fishing the Merrimack River from the State Reservation has been fairly consistent, however smaller bass have been the rule. Also, some sporadic bluefish activity reported.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Seabrook and Hampton have had good fishing over the last week, with some big fish falling for both live and cut bait. The marsh and river in Hampton have both produced keeper sized bass recently. Boat anglers have had good luck close into the rocks along the shore, or at the mouth of the rivers. Further north, fishing around Portsmouth and Dover Point has been somewhat steady. There are some big bass and blues out at the Isle of Shoals.

Tip of the Week:

Sea worms are often baited using a typical fish-finder rig or perhaps just a barrel swivel and an egg sinker. While this works nicely, there are other ways to rig a worm. Much like bobber fishing in a freshwater pond, set a worm on a 3-4 foot leader, and then utilize a cork float to allow the worm to float on or just under the surface. This technique tends to work best at night.

July 7, 2006

Dog Days of Summer not Barking Yet

Frank G. Dwyer
July 7, 2006

July 4th usually heralds in the “Dog Days” of summer, which is never a good thing for fishing, but the action in our waters continues to please anglers.

Larger Striped Bass have taken up residence in Massachusetts and New Hampshire waters, while bluefish are also being landed in more numbers. Of course, the bluefish have sent the mackerel to more northern waters, but overall the fishing remains strong.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Bluefish have been patrolling the coast off Marblehead and anglers are having a good time targeting the toothy critters, especially with light tackle. Stripers have been cooperating as well, with larger bass being taken off the Neck, especially at night on eels.

Salem: (3 hooks) Anglers drifting sea worms after dark at the Kernwood Bridge have been landing keeper size bass. Fishing off Winter Island has offered a mix of bluefish and striped bass for anglers utilizing both bait and lures. Sea worms, clams and cut bait as well as larger popping plugs are all leading to tight lines.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Early risers have found pogies in Beverly Harbor, and a live-lined pogie is one of the best ways to weed out the small fish and get yourself a striped bass over 30 pounds. Anglers trolling tube-n-worm set ups around Baker’s Island have done well with larger striped bass. Bluefish are also in numbers around Baker’s and off West Beach.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Flounder fishing remains strong off Marblehead as limits have been reached by anglers over the last week. Bluefish have been just off the Marblehead coast and striped bass have been hanging in the rocks, especially at night. While mackerel have thinned out around the Cape, anglers have found pogies in numbers just off Gloucester. Boat anglers have had success for keeper size bass in the 30-100 foot depths off Halibut Point with some bruiser blues to 12 pounds in the mix. Schoolies remain the rule in the Essex River as fly rodders have done well with fish to 26”. Offshore, school bluefin tuna have been starting to make the trek from Cape Cod Bay to our waters, so many anglers will soon be in search of the speedy tunas. Cod and Haddock fishing has been quite good around Stellwagen, Jeffreys and Tillies as the Party Boats continue to offer good fishing to their customers.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) While the mackerel have never really been thick in Ipswich Bay this year, pogies have been around early in the morning, bringing striped bass and bluefish with them. Bathers have taken over the beaches during the day, but anglers trekking out to Crane and Steep Hill Beach after dark are finding good bass fishing.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Boat anglers trolling off Emerson Rocks have found bluefish to 12 pounds and plenty of hungry school-sized bass. The Parker River continues to have good bass activity, with larger fish being taken at night. Plum Island Sound has had a decent mix of blues and bass for anglers.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Fishing upriver from the Route 95 Bridge to the Gillis Bridge has been quite productive over the last week. Casting into the banks of Deer, Ram, Eagle and Carr Islands has led to good school bass action for both spin and fly fishermen and larger bass after dark. Drifting from the AYC moorings to Woodbridge Island offered non-stop action last week for mostly school-sized bass and the occasional rouge bluefish on the outgoing tide. The fishing pressure was intense from Plum Island Point over the Holiday weekend--but with good reason--many bass are being taken, including plenty of keeper sized bass being landed on clams, worms and cut bait. Anglers trolling from the mouth of the Merrimack to the MR buoy have found large bluefish willing to take most offerings. Party boats continue to get into good numbers of cod, haddock, cusk and wolf fish.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) The RV’s and campers are packed into the State Reservation in Salisbury and fishing the Merrimack from the shore there has been quite crowded. As it is across the river, fishing has been good, especially for bait anglers. Boat anglers drifting from the toothpick to Badger Rocks on the outgoing tide have found good numbers of bass.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Mackerel are still swimming off the seacoast and anglers are finding good numbers of bass in pursuit. Fishing from Odiorne State Park in Rye at night has been good for bait anglers. Further north, anglers drifting in the Piscataqua have found decent bass fishing from the Navy Yard to the mouth. Cod and Haddock fishing has been quite good just south of the Isle of Shoals as the ground fish activity continue to please fishermen.

Tip of the Week:

While the topic is certainly open for debate, I firmly believe striped bass have a keen sense of bait/lure presentation and will discriminate based on leaders, snap swivels and color. If you use a snap-swivel as a convenient method of changing up your lures, try tying the lure directly to the monofilament. I’m willing to bet that you will get more hits with the lure tied directly to the line or a heavy mono leader as opposed to utilizing the highly visible snap-swivel.

June 30, 2006

Holiday Weekend Should Provide Excellent Fishing Opportunities

Frank G. Dwyer
July 30, 2006

As the July 4th Holiday Weekend arrives, unsettled weather has been no deterrent for anglers this week as striped bass and bluefish continue to be landed up and down the North Shore.

Flounder and fluke are being landed in more numbers and anglers fishing off shore have found a good mix of cod, haddock, wolf fish and cod. School bluefin tuna have been off Provincetown, so they will be in our waters soon.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Fishing around Castle Rock and the Lighthouse has been good for both bait and fly fishermen. Anglers reported mostly sub-legal striped bass activity, but consistent action. Cut bait has been working well for bait anglers with sinking lines and bait fish imitation flies being the order of the day for fly anglers. Devereaux Beach has been providing good action for surfcasters for both blues and stripers.

Salem: (3 hooks) Anglers fishing in Salem Harbor have found consistent school bass action as fish in the 22”-26” have been taking most offerings. Bluefish have been patrolling just outside the harbor and as a result, mackerel have not been as evident.

Beverly: (3 hooks) West Beach has produced good numbers of bass this past week, with a few bluefish venturing close to shore. Ober Park and Kernwood Bridge have been hotspots for bait anglers at night as keeper size bass have been in the mix.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Drifting sea worms on a fish-finder rig from Singing Beach in Manchester-by-the-Sea has produced keeper size bass this week, especially at night. Fishing around Magnolia and Gloucester has been consistent as bass have been close to shore. Larger fish have started to be landed in more numbers, but school bass are still the norm. Bluefish have been in numbers off Halibut Point and larger bass have been dredged up from the deeper water off the point. Small bass continue to be taken in the Essex River with a few blues in the mix. Fishing off Tillies and Stellwagen has been offering a good mix of ground fish.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Fishing around Ipswich has been somewhat spotty, but bluefish and stripers are available to persistent anglers. Bluefish and striped bass have been taken at the mouth of the Ipswich River, while Crane, Steep Hill and Pavilion Beaches have been inconsistent.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Fishing in the Parker River has been good, as both bluefish and bass have been chasing bait upriver. Plum Island Sound has also been home to decent numbers of striped bass and bluefish.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Fishing around Newburyport has been good, as fish have been landed from the 95 Bridge to the mouth of the Merrimack. Over the last week, I’ve had mornings with many fish landed, and others with hardly a nibble. The inconsistency could be related to the still murky water or unsettled weather, however persistence has continued to pay off, especially early in the morning or after dark. Joppa Flats has fished well for fly and spin anglers as larger flies on sinking lines have been working, especially when stripped erratically. Top water plugs have also been enticing bass on the Flats, but again, the fish have been picky. As we lead up to July 4th, Plum Island Point has been crowded with anglers, mostly fishing with bait, so you’ll need patience at this popular spot. The ocean front has also been delivering fish for anglers, with metal and swimming lures working on spin rods and clams and worms working well for the sand-spike crew.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Boat anglers have found pods of bass just off the North Jetty and along Salisbury beach. While most fish have been in the 22-26” range, keepers are in the mix and bluefish have arrived to keep anglers on their toes. Expect elbow to elbow conditions from the State Reservation this weekend.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Seabrook, Rye and Hampton have all seen their share of good fishing over the last week. A few surface feeds off Rye at sunset last week had bass and blues in the mix. Boat anglers have had mixed results in the Piscataqua River over the past week, however some keeper sized bass have been landed. Fly anglers do best with large flies presented on a fast sinking line. Spin fishermen have done well with sluggos, broken-back swimming lures and poppers. Bluefish and Bass have been trapping bait offshore at the Isle of Shoals.

Tip of the Week:

Saltwater fly fishing has gained in popularity over the last several years as anglers have found the same excitement experienced on a trout stream can be multiplied when fishing for larger quarry in the salt. One of the best tips I’ve received as it relates to fly fishing in saltwater is to vary the strip/retrieve until you find a rhythm that produces strikes consistently. One day it may be a steady retrieve, while the next it may be two quick strips, followed by a 3-count, followed by two quick strips, and so on. Don’t get stuck in a rut, vary your retrieve and land more fish.

June 22, 2006

Post Solstice Fishing Action Heats Up

Frank G. Dwyer
June 23, 2006

Warm weather and excellent numbers of baitfish in our local waters have combined to provide anglers with steady action throughout the North Shore.

Larger striped bass have been chasing mackerel and pogies both close to shore and in deeper waters, while cod, haddock, pollock and flounder have all been landed in increasing numbers.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Good numbers of bass and blues off Marblehead as anglers have found bass just outside the harbor as well as along the Neck. Bait fishermen have been thinning out the schoolies using live-lined or large chunks of mackerel and pogies.

Salem: (3 hooks) Salem Willows Pier and Winter Island have all been attracting anglers and for good reason, the fish are biting! Bluefish and Flounder have been congregating just outside the Harbor. Offshore, anglers have found good numbers of haddock, cod and pollock on Jefferies and Stellwagen.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Anglers fishing from the area around the Beverly/Salem Bridge have found good numbers of bass, especially at night, with some bigger fish in the mix. Anglers fishing from West Beach and around the islands have also had consistent bass action.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) Manchester-by-the-Sea anglers have found good numbers from shore and boat as both bluefish and striper landings have been on the increase. Shore fishermen have had good luck catching bass chasing small pogies up against the rocks along Magnolia. In Gloucester, the Annisquam has been producing good numbers of striped bass, with larger fish being caught at night. Tube-n-Worm rigs and large plugs have been the ticket. Fishing around Stage Fort Park has also been good for shore anglers using both bait and lures. Striped Bass have also been cooperating with fishermen around Rocky Neck/Eastern Point as bluefish and bass have been taking bait as well as plugs and metals. Larger Bass continue to coral bait of Halibut point in the thirty to one hundred foot level. The Essex River continues to produce good numbers of bass but most are in the 22-26” range.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Bluefish and striped bass have been landed at the mouth of the Ipswich River this week as sand eels have become quite thick. Small flies and plastics have been enticing bass, some over the 28” limit to strike. Most of the local beaches have also been fishing quite nicely, including Crane and Steep Hill. Beware; the greenheads will be here soon!

Newbury: (3 hooks) Small bluefish have arrived on the scene in both Plum Island Sound and the Parker River. Surfcasters fishing with worms, clams and cut mackerel have done well from the beach at Parking Lot 1 of the Parker River National Wildlife Reserve.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Good fishing around Newburyport and Plum Island as sand eels and mackerel have lured fish closer to shore. Fishing from the Ellis Bridge to Woodbridge Island has produced fairly consistent school sized bass as both fly and spin anglers have done well. Sand eels have become more plentiful in the river, so small eel imitations have been working well. Plum Island Point and the Ocean Front have also been fishing well with bait anglers landing more keeper size bass on worms, clams and cut mackerel. Small bluefish have been caught from the Merrimack River entrance to Sandy Point. The ocean front has also yielded larger bass to bait anglers, especially at night. Kay Moulton’s photo board at Surfland Bait and Tackle has plenty of nice fish displayed, but smaller bass are still the norm. Party boats have been offering their patrons good fishing for haddock, cod and pollock.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Early morning or later in the evening are the only real options for anglers fishing from Salisbury Beach as bathers have taken over. That’s OK though, as most of the action from the beach is in the lowlight hours for both bait and artificial anglers. The State Reservation continues to attract throngs of anglers who are having success fishing in the Merrimack, mostly on bait.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Fishing off Seabrook and Hampton has been good as mackerel have invaded the Seacoast. Larger fish are in the mix, but schoolies are still the dominant catch. Fishing off Rye and Portsmouth has also improved and bluefish to 5 pounds are now in the mix.


Seeing a top water blitz of feeding fish and diving birds will set any anglers heart pumping, but many boat fishermen approach these blitzes in a “run and gun” manner, often putting the fish down and ruining the action for not only themselves, but the other anglers in the area. Try to remain calm and approach the blitz at a slow speed. Stop your engine on the outside of the blitz, taking care not to “run over” the fish and cast into the boiling water. You’ll increase your catch ratios and prevent angry glares from your fellow anglers.

June 16, 2006

As summer approaches, fishing opportunities abound

Frank G. Dwyer
June 16, 2006

The warmer weather has helped keep fishing on the up-tick as baitfish have become thicker and larger striped bass have been taken by both shore and boat anglers.

The flounder bite has become more consistent, while offshore, cod and haddock fishing has been good on both Jeffries and Stellwagen.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Fishing from the Neck has been productive this past week as bass chased bait up against the rocks. Spin fishermen did well with small poppers and plastics and fly fishermen did well with small baitfish imitations. Devereux Beach provided steady action for anglers fishing lures and bait, however many of the fish are still sub-legal.

Salem: (3 hooks) The Salem Willows Pier has been a popular spot for anglers this week, as larger bass have been caught, especially at night. Fishing around Bakers Island has provided good action for anglers using cut bait or live-lining mackerel. Flounder fishing has improved just outside the harbor.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Fishing the Islands around Beverly and Manchester has been productive for boat anglers as keeper size bass have been taken by anglers offering cut bait in the rocks and trolling tube-n-worms and live-lining mackerel. Bait fishermen working from the Beverly Fishing Pier have also done well.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) The Manchester-by-the-Sea shoreline has been offering a steady pick of decent sized bass, with larger fish also in the mix. Flounder has been decent just outside the harbor. Further north, the beaches of Magnolia and Gloucester have been fishing well, especially for anglers utilizing the mackerel that have really become thick in the waters around the Cape. The Annisquam and Little Rivers have been providing good action for fly and spin fishermen with small deceivers and sliders working well on the fly and pencil poppers and small plugs for those using spinning gear. Boat anglers working from Eastern Point to Emerson Point have found good bass numbers, with larger fish hitting live-lined mackerel. Sand Eels and Silversides have been enticing bass in the Essex River as fly anglers do well with small minnow imitations.
Good action for cod and haddock off Tillies and Stellwagen, with some pollock and cusk in the mix.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Crane, Pavilion and Steep Hill beaches have all had good bass activity for surf casters. A few surface blitzes have been noted at the mouth of the Ipswich River as bass continue to take up residence in the local waters.

Newbury: (3 hooks) Plum Island Sound has been fishing well as has the Parker River, especially around Cape Merrill. Sluggos, top water plugs and pencil poppers have all been working quite well. The Parker River has been yielding larger bass, especially in upriver spots. Anglers have also found good bass fishing from Sandy Point on the southern end of Plum Island.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) I just got my skiff in the water this past week as my marina was one of those affected by the flooding of the Merrimack. I can tell you that the water in the river is still quite murky and has many large logs/poles still floating down river. Be careful!! That said, fishing the last few days has been spotty, but fish have been taken by bait fishermen as well as those anglers using flies and lures. The ocean front has had quite a bit of sea weed present, making fishing from the beach somewhat of a challenge. Party boats continue to catch good numbers of cod and haddock.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Boat fishermen have found mackerel at Breaking Rocks and have done well live-lining them in the Merrimack. Fishing off the State Reservations stretch along the Merrimack has been fishing well, especially for bait anglers using mackerel, clams and sea worms.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) Seabrook, Rye and Hampton have all become lively with bass over the last week as more mackerel make their way north. Bass have been taken from Foss Beach and Jenness Beach as well off Hampton Beach. Further north, the Great Bay and Piscataqua have been heating up as more legal bass have been taken this week.

Tip Of The Week:

Increase you chances at landing bluefish! As the summer approaches, bluefish will be infesting our waters and you’ll do well always using a wire leader or fluro-carbon leader so you don’t lose your favorite plugs. If your using larger plugs, the blues may not be able to get their razor sharp teeth to your line, but unlike stripers, feeding bluefish have little problem taking a plug with a wire or fluro leader.

June 7, 2006

Despite the Weather, Fishing Action Rolls On

Frank G. Dwyer
June 8, 2006

Larger schools of bass have been invading our waters as mackerel have started to show in more numbers and keeper sized bass are starting to be caught in more numbers.

Before the turn in the weather, flounder, cod, haddock and pollock fishing had been quite good, and should heat up again quickly once we are out of the slop.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Good fishing abounds for anglers in Marblehead. Fishing off the Neck, especially near Castle Rock, has started to heat up. Bait and Artificial fishermen have been scoring bass in large numbers from 14” to 32”. The waters around Marblehead Harbor have been decent for flounder.

Salem: (3 hooks) Salem Sound now has larger schools of bass chasing the freshly arriving mackerel. Cut bait has been working well from shore and boat as has larger profile flies on sinking lines. Winter Island has also been providing anglers with excellent fishing.

Beverly: (3 hooks) Fish have invaded the Beverly coast with excellent opportunities for bass available from West Beach to Mingo Beach. Striped Bass have been chasing mackerel closer to shore so anglers do well with baitfish pattern lures and flies as well as with cut bait.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) The fishing has been quite nice from Manchester to Essex as mackerel and sand eels entice bass closer to shore. Manchester and Gloucester Beaches have had an abundance of small bass available to fishermen, with more keepers starting to show in the mix. Larger plugs and swimming lures as well as metals and jigs have all been producing. The Annisquam and some of the smaller creeks around Gloucester and Essex have also been holding bass. Larger Schools of Bass have been in the waters off Halibut Point, mostly in 30 to 100 feet of water. Party Boats had been delivering good cod and haddock action to their clients just prior to the poor weather at the end of the week.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Anglers have found bass from the ocean front at Cranes Beach to the mouth of the Ipswich River. Most of the bass have been in the 12-26” range, but larger fish are in the mix. There has been an abundance of sand eels in the water so anglers do well with smaller profile baits like sluggos and sand eel imitations.

Newbury: (3 hooks) The southern end of Plum Island has had good numbers of fish from shore for anglers, as bass have been taking metal, jigs, plugs and cut bait. Plum Island Sound and the Parker River have also yielded bass to 32”.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) Water quality continues to improve in the Merrimack River and there has been no shortage of anglers looking for stripers. The weather has not seemed to impact the fishing in the river as fishing from Deer Island to Joppa Flats has been excellent. Drifting on the outgoing tide on Joppa has produced excellent numbers of bass, with several keepers caught. Larger profile flies on sinking lines and sluggos twitched on top have been working best. Along the ocean front, fish have been in close to shore and anglers have been taking the fish on both bait and lures. Mackerel have been close to shore as well. Plum Island Point continues to attract crowds as anglers have been doing well two hours before and after low tide. Cod, haddock and pollock fishing has been quite good for the Party Boats.

Salisbury: (3 hooks) Fish have been close to shore and anglers have been taking advantage of that on Salisbury Beach. Fish have been caught in the wash by both fly and spin anglers. Fishermen fishing from the State Reservation are doing just as well as their counterparts across the river.

Seacoast, NH: (3 hooks) New Hampshire anglers have seen a nice increase in striper activity over the last week. Seabrook and Hampton have seen fish just off the coast in the river systems. Farther north, the Great Bay area has seen an influx of striped bass with the best fishing in the Squamscott and Lamprey rivers. The biggest fish have been caught on either live or cut alewives. Mackerel have been inconsistent but flounder fishing is on the up-tick from Rye to Portsmouth.

Tip of the Week:

Fly Fishing 101: Many saltwater anglers have been expanding their repertoire by adding a 9-weight fly rod to their arsenal. When fighting a striped bass or bluefish on a fly rod, it is imperative that you keep the line tight and do not provide any slack or the fish will spit the fly. Keep steady pressure on the fish and utilize the rod to tire the fish out.

June 1, 2006

Good Options Abound for Anglers

Frank G. Dwyer
May 31, 2006

Pleasant weather combined with increasing numbers of bait arriving has perked up local anglers as fish have become more active and are being landed all over the North Shore.

While some areas are still heating up, flounder, bass, cod, pollock and haddock are just some of the species currently being targeted as more bait arrives daily.

Marblehead: (3 hooks) Deveraux Beach has been giving up bass from 8 – 30” and larger fish are arriving every day. Spin and fly anglers have found hungry fish on the top and bottom, so get out there! Pogies have been around in the early morning hours and you know stripers are following them. Flounder fishing in and around the harbor is picking up.

Salem: (3 hooks) Bass fishing has been good around Winter Island and from Salem Willows. Anglers using cut bait as well as clams have done well. Flounder fishing has been improving and anglers have been getting their limit.

Beverly: (3 hooks) There have been decent numbers of Flounder off Beverly Cove this week, but the skates are also increasing in numbers. West Beach has been producing bass in the early morning hours as well as at dusk. Bait anglers continue to score at the Pier.

Cape Ann: (3 hooks) White Beach and Singing Beach in Manchester-by-the-Sea continue to deliver bass to fishermen. Flounder have also been a steady pick just outside the harbor. Gloucester has really cranked up over the last week as bass have invaded the area and are being taken from Ten Pound Island to Halibut Point. Some Pogies have been reported early in the morning and as the numbers increase so will the size of the bass. The Essex River has also been heating up, especially in the early morning hours as fly and light-spin anglers have had fun with schoolies. Fishing offshore has been quite good off both Stellwagen and Jeffries.

Ipswich: (3 hooks) Fishing from the Crane Beach area has been quite consistent as both spin and fly fishermen have been finding cooperative bass. Along Ipswich Neck, anglers have also found bass to 30 inches.

Newbury: (3 hooks) The National Wildlife Refuge beaches remain closed, except for Parking Lot 1, which has yielded good amounts of bass over the past week. Plum Island Sound and the Parker River have also been fishing well as anglers reported more numbers and bigger bass.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (3 hooks) The Merrimack is clearing up with the amount of debris in the river lessening each day and the water clarity improving as well. Bass have been taken from the Route 95 Bridge to the Gillis Bridge. Many anglers have had luck using Sluggo’s and other soft baits. Joppa Flats has shown signs of improvement as well as hungry fish have been taken from the city docks down to Woodbridge Island. The ocean front has had good bass activity from shore on both top water plugs and metal. Plum Island Point has been elbow to elbow with bait anglers scoring consistently and fly fishermen having success from the sand bar. Party Boats have had good success over the past week.

Salisbury: (2 hooks) As it is across the river, anglers have been flocking to the shores of the State Reservation and catching bass on worms, clams and mackerel. Bucktail Jigs have also been working in the river and from Salisbury Beach.

Seacoast, NH: (2 hooks) Striped bass fishing has picked up around Seabrook and Hampton, with school sized fish being taken regularly along the coast. Further north, more stripers are showing up in the Piscataqua River, with reports having the area near the Navy Yard producing quite well. Sporadic mackerel reports are also coming in from the Seacoast and more numbers should arrive daily. Some flounder have been caught, but many have been shorts.


Does color matter? The debate goes on, but I certainly believe that various colors and patterns work better in different conditions. Typically, I find that on overcast days or at night, darker colored lures and baits work best. On bright and sunny days, I find brighter colors and flash attracting more fish. Don’t be afraid to experiment and see what works for you when you’re fishing.

May 25, 2006

Conditions Slowly Improving

Frank G. Dwyer
May 25, 2006

The weather has been cooperative and has improved fishing conditions—and angler’s moods—all around our region.

Memorial Day should bring good action for both inshore and offshore anglers as fish get into their feeding patterns for the season.

Marblehead: (2 hooks) Fishing the Neck by the lighthouse has been improving as anglers have been tussling with small stripers on both spinning gear with small metal lures and rubber/plastic baits as well as small profile flies. Flounder are becoming more available.

Salem: (2 hooks) The Danvers River has been producing excellent amounts of bass for local anglers. Pogies have also been reported in the area and this favorite striper treat is bound to increase the amount of larger fish in our waters. Fishing around Salem Harbor has also been good with bait and artificial fishermen scoring good amounts of bass.

Beverly: (2 hooks) Good fishing from West Beach, especially in the dawn hours, as stripers have been taking metal lures, popping plugs and small jigs. Anglers fishing around the islands have also found bass, with some keeper size fish now in the mix. The Beverly Fishing Pier has been yielding fish for bait fishermen.

Cape Ann: (2 hooks) Fishing around Manchester-by-the Sea and Magnolia has seen improvement over the last week. Surfcasters fishing from Singing Beach have seen more cooperative fish arriving everyday. Cut mackerel has been working well for the bait fishermen, while poppers, swimmers and jigs are working for spin casters. Fishing from Magnolia Rocks has been yielding decent amounts of small striped bass. Gloucester has also come alive with bass being taken along the usual spots like the State Pier, the Annisquam and many of the ocean beaches. In Rockport, fishing has certainly picked up for those fishing from Long Beach and Cape Hedge beach. The Essex River has been yielding good amounts of striped bass, especially for fly fishermen. Party boats are providing excellent ground-fishing for their patrons.

Ipswich: (2 hooks) Fishing in the Ipswich River has provided good action for school-sized striped bass as hungry fish take most offerings. Pavilion Beach has also surrendered stripers to fishermen working both the incoming and outgoing tides.

Newbury: (2 hooks) The fine folks at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge did a great job of cleaning up the beach at Parking Lot 1 and anglers can now fish from the beach there. The remainder of the beach remains closed as three pairs of Piping Plovers have made their home on the beaches. Sandy Point has also been a good destination for anglers in search of spring stripers.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (2 hooks) Newburyport did a great job cleaning up the beaches and while the water is still somewhat murky, the fish are back and cooperating. Good sized stripers have been taken as far up river as the Lawrence Dam and fishing around the Chain Bridge and the nearby islands has been pleasing anglers. Small bass are falling for most offerings from Fly and Spin fishermen. Joppa Flats is improving every day as the currents and water quality improve. There is no shortage of bent rods along the ocean front and in the River at Plum Island Point. Some mackerel have been seen in the area, but they are not in thick yet. Cod, Haddock, Cusk and Pollock all being taken on the Party Boats.

Salisbury: (2 hooks) Fishing from the Merrimack River at the State Reservation has certainly improved, but the current is still quite strong and debris is still somewhat prevalent. That said, anglers fishing with cut bait, sea worms and clams have all done well for striped bass. Salisbury Beach has also been providing a fairly steady pick of bass in the 14-22” range.

Seacoast, NH: (2 hooks) Striper fishing is finally starting to heat up in the Granite State as anglers have found fish from Seabrook to Portsmouth. Anglers fishing the river systems around Dover and Newmarket have found striped bass to be much more cooperative than weeks past. Some bass have also been taken in and around the Piscataqua and some sporadic mackerel activity has been noted. Off shore, Cod and Haddock fishing has also improved.

Tip of the Week:

When fishing strong currents, use the water flow to your advantage. Cast your offering upstream of the current and tend your line just enough to feel a strike, allowing your bait to run freely in the current. Often, just as your line is at the end of this “free float” you will get a hit.

May 19, 2006

Tough Start to the Season

Frank G. Dwyer

Wind and rain pushed many fish out of reach of local anglers and kept party boats at bay most of the last week. As things calm down and local waters become more fish-friendly, we should have a more consistent bite.

Bluefish have started to appear in Cape Cod waters, so the toothy one’s should be in our environs soon.

Marblehead: (1 hook) Mother Nature can work wonders and hopefully one of those will be clearing out the debris and weed and bringing the fish closer to shore. Flounder should be available in numbers by this time of year, but again the weather has changed that schedule.

Salem: (1 hook) Patience is the word as we wait for our waters to become stable again. The Danvers and other rivers in the area are murky and debris-ridden. The Harbor in Salem has not yielded many fish over the last week.

Beverly: (1 hook) At the risk of sounding like a broken record, anglers fishing from West Beach and other locations in Beverly have found weed infested waters and little action.

Cape Ann: (1 hook) Striper fishermen are not the only one’s suffering with the weather as the cod and haddock bite has been hurt by the storms. While more unsettled weather is predicted for the weekend, it’s nowhere near the magnitude of our last week so hopefully things will quickly improve. As with the rest of the area, favorite river and ocean fishing spots like the Annisquam and Halibut Point have yielded very few fish. The Essex River should yield fish soon for anglers itching for a tight line.

Ipswich: (1 hook) Provided we can get a few days of somewhat decent weather, anglers prospecting around Crane Beach should find fish reappearing slowly. Pavilion beach and the back side of Ipswich Neck should also provide opportunities to anglers looking for fish.

Newbury: (1 hook) The southern end of Plum Island, aka Sandy Point, would typically be a great place to fish this weekend, but with our extraordinary weather over the last week, fish have been nowhere to be found. If you’re going to give it a go, the Parker River would probably be your best shot.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (1 hook) The Merrimack has raw sewage and massive amounts of trash and other objects floating down river. The ocean front also was a mess of flotsam, trash and weed making fishing not only difficult but somewhat depressing. Anglers looking for fish would do well trying in the Plum Island River or upriver around Deer Island.

Salisbury: (1 hook) Much like the beaches on Plum Island, Salisbury Beach has lot’s of washed up trash and debris as well as a good amount of weed in the water. It will be a few days at least before it’s truly fishable. The Merrimack as previously mentioned is a mess.

Seacoast, NH: (1 hook) New Hampshire anglers are experiencing the same frustrations as those of us in the Commonwealth as the weather has wreaked havoc on most fishing locations. Hopefully next week the beaches from Seabrook to Rye will offer the Spring fishing that we all dream about during the winter.


As things warm up, skates will start to show in more numbers. If you’d like to avoid this winged bottom dwellers when bait fishing for striped bass, flounder and many other fish, you’ll do well applying a small float to your line, six to eight inches above the hook. Your bait will now float just above the bottom, allowing you to catch more fish and weed out the skates.

May 10, 2006

Weather may be foul, but fish are here!

Frank G. Dwyer

The nice weather we had last weekend enticed the striped bass to show up in more numbers. Anglers up and down the coast found hungry schoolie’s in river systems as well as along the ocean front.

While we seem to be in for some more unsettled weather in the coming days, fish are still out there for the hearty angler.

Marblehead: (2 hooks) Anglers fishing the Neck have found newly arrived bass close to shore. While these fish average 14-18”’s, they are the scouts for a new season and bigger fish will not be far behind. Flounder fishing has been spotty.

Salem: (2 hooks) Fishing in the Danvers and North Rivers has been good with hungry stripers providing the action. Winter Island and Kernwood Bridge have also been good locations to try your luck. Some flounder have been taken in the harbor and when the weather allows, cod and haddock fishing has been decent.

Beverly: (2 hooks) Veterans Memorial Bridge and the White Fuel Bridge have been yielding striped bass for both spin and fly anglers. West Beach has also been providing action for school-sized bass. Small flies, plastic/rubber baits and small poppers have all been working.

Cape Ann: (2 hooks) A few flounder to be found off the Manchester and Magnolia coast, but stripers have been more cooperative. Singing Beach and White Beach saw hungry bass in the wash this past weekend. The Annisquam has heated up over the last week despite the miserable weather. Many locations have been yielding decent numbers of striped bass in the 14-18” range on average. Small flies on sinking lines and sluggo’s or fin-s are working quite well. The Essex and Castle Neck have also seen an awakening over the past week as hungry schoolies have been taking most offerings. Cod and Haddock have been caught on the party boats, but weather has been hindering efforts.

Ipswich: (2 hooks) Fish have arrived at Pavilion and Crane Beaches and they’re hungry! Olive/White and Chartreuse/White clouser and deceivers on a sinking line have been working quite well. Small popping plugs along with bucktail jigs have also been enticing the fish to hit.

Newbury: (2 hooks) Fishing in Plum Island Sound was decent last weekend with schoolies in many spots. The Parker River has also been presenting anglers with good fishing as hungry striped bass take most offerings.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (2 hooks) Fishing upriver has been spotty for Shad, but the fish are being taken from Rock’s Village to the Gillis Bridge. Small stripers have also been congregating upriver around Carr, Eagle and Deer Island, probably hiding from the weather like the rest of us. Joppa Flats was sparsely populated with anglers this past weekend, but small fish have been cooperating from the AYC to Woodbridge Island. The ocean front yielded small bass on almost every cast for over an hour last Saturday on the last of the incoming tide, while the same spot yielded only 3 fish the next day, after all, it’s still Spring!

Salisbury: (2 hooks) Fishing from the State Reservation across from Plum Island Point has yielded decent numbers of bass over the last week. Fish are still small, but they are there for the taking. While many anglers are using sea worms and clams, this early in the season you’ll do just as well with artificial baits.

Seacoast, NH: (1 hook) The Granite State appears to be lagging behind Massachusetts just a bit as things are slowly starting to get underway. Some small bass have been taken off Seabrook and Hampton, while some early arrivals have also been taken around Portsmouth.

Tip Of The Week:

Bucktail Jigs are an excellent choice from both shore and boat in targeting many species of fish in our waters. It’s important to maintain contact with the bottom during your jigging to ensure the bait is being presented to the fish feeding on the bottom and to create an easier target for the fish to strike.

May 3, 2006

Here We Go Again

Frank G. Dwyer

Anglers to our south have been enjoying newly arrived striped bass for sometime now. The waters of the North Shore are slowly warming, but the chilly water combined with poor weather at the beginning of the week certainly has not helped fishing. We can expect an influx of stripers over the next few weeks. You’ll have to work a little harder, but you can find them now!

As a reminder, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has put a three-year moratorium on the harvest, possession, and sale of river herring. Possessing herring in Massachusetts is prohibited through 2008. This is a response to recent studies showing steep declines in river spawning runs.

Marblehead: (2 hooks) A few flounder have been taken around the harbor and reports have a few schoolie bass being taken near the Power Plant. With the improving weather, fishing around the Neck should be good in the coming days.

Salem: (2 hooks) Haddock fishing has been decent off the old Dumping Grounds, while a few stripers have been landed near the Lead Mills. Other early season spots to check are Winter Island and Kernwood Bridge.

Beverly: (2 hooks) Some flounder have been caught just off the Beverly coast, mostly on seaworms. Spring spots for striped bass include the Bass River and the Danvers River as well as around Danversport.

Cape Ann: (2 hooks) Manchester-by-the-Sea has had some flounder action at the mouth, but again, the weather earlier this week has not been helpful. There have been reports of a few bass being taken around Gloucester, but the weather has been making things difficult around the Cape. Alternatively, anglers heading to Stellwagen have had good luck with Cod and Haddock. Remember as of May 1, cod fish must be 24 inches to keep. Silversides and Alewives have been spotted in the Essex River, stripers can’t be far behind.

Ipswich: (1 hook) The Ipswich River system is a good place to prospect for early season bass. In the next week or so, fish should be cooperating off Crane, Steephill and Pavilion beaches.

Newbury: (1 hook) Cold water reigns in Plum Island Sound, but a few nice days should entice the fish to return. Surfcasters working the southern end of Plum Island will have a steady pick of fish soon.

Newburyport / Plum Island: (1 hook) Shad and more recently small striped bass are being taken at the Rock’s Village bridge in West Newbury. Deer Island and the other up-river islands are always good early-season spots. Some small fish also reportedly have been taken near the South Jetty on the Plum Island oceanfront and many anglers have begun working the river at Plum Island point. Bucktail Jigs are a favorite early season striper bait. Joppa Flats should start heating up in the coming weeks. Party boats are reporting decent cod and haddock activity.

Salisbury: (1 hook) If history is bound to repeat itself, small stripers should be frolicking in the Salisbury Beach surf in the coming week. Additionally, anglers have already been having limited success from the State Reservation side of the Merrimack River.

Seacoast, NH: (1 hook) If your looking for that first bass in the granite state, you’d do well to stay in some of the river and estuary systems. In and around the Hampton Marsh should yield small stripers as well as further north in the Lamprey River, as well as in Newcastle and around Great Bay. Alewives have been seen in local runs.


Most anglers are familiar with fishing rubber/plastic baits like Fin-S and Slug-Go’s, but most fish these baits as jigs rigged to lead-heads. Try rigging a 4-5” bait on an un-weighted hook and twitch it across the surface or in a swift current and watch the bass go crazy!

March 20, 2006

Trout Anyone?

Frank Dwyer
March 20, 2006

As we enter spring, trout stocking is underway as 636,000 brook, brown, rainbow and tiger trout will be stocked in Massachusetts streams, rivers, ponds and lakes. Stocking began in late February and will be complete by Memorial Day.

According to figures from MassWildlife, the numbers breakdown as follows:

-287,000 rainbow trout over 12 inches
-88,000 rainbow trout from 9-11 inches
-51,500 brown trout up to 12 inches
-119,000 brown trout from 6-11 inches

The general rule of thumb is that the larger bodies of waters will receive the larger fish while the brooks and streams will be stocked with the smaller fish. Stocking is subject to ice out and road (dirt) conditions as the trout-stocking trucks are quite large.

Being a North Shore guy, I can tell you that the following bodies of waters have been stocked recently in the area:

  • Berry Pond, North Andover
  • Rock Pond, Georgetown
  • Strangman Pond, Gloucester
  • Forest Lake, Methuen
  • Lake Pentucket, Haverhill
Anglers interested in a the latest in trout stocking information should visit the MassWildlife website or call your nearest district office:

  • Western 413-447-9789
  • Valley 413-323-7632
  • Central 508-835-3607
  • Northeast 978-263-4347
  • Southeast 508-759-3406

Don't forget to get your 2006 fishing license!!

March 14, 2006

Surfcasting Has It All

There are many methods of fishing, and many who practice just one form or another, becoming somewhat of a purist if you will.

You have fly fishermen, boat fishermen and bait fishermen to name just a few. Within these groups, there can be sub-groups, like your catch and release only type of fishermen, or perhaps those that are targeting fish for the table.

If I were forced into one type of fishing for the foreseeable future, it would be surfcasting from the beach. Surfcasting is fishing at its best. I may not be completely objective here, having started fishing as a boy from the beaches of the Long Island Sound, and having rekindled my interest in fishing 18 years ago fishing for monster stripers off the beaches of Martha’s Vineyard.

Even so, there is something magical and even primal, in the art of surfcasting.Without fail, my heart races as any given surfcasting excursion approaches. With adrenaline pumping through my veins, thoughts of large fish and bent rods typically fill my mind as the event approaches.

These days, the anticipation typically begins as I leave the downtown Newburyport area in my rear view mirror and make my way down Water Street. Glimpsing Joppa Flats for birds working the water or any other indications of the presence of fish only adds to the now building anticipation. Crossing over the Plum Island River, the familiar hum of the drawbridge greets me as I get closer to my selected destination.

Once again, I survey the waters below the bridge for any signs of a fishy evening to come. Soon, I’m unloading the truck and trudging in the soft sand with rods, sand spikes and tackle bag in tow. One of two things happens next. Either I calmly set up my gear and begin fishing, or I walk upon actively feeding and visible fish, and fumble nervously to rig up. On several of these occasions when fish were present, Murphy’s Law has been the norm as I suffer any number of difficulties from tangled lines to hooks in the thumb.

More often than not though, the surfcasting experience is one filled with innumerable pleasures. Wading into the surf on a starlit night to cast a line into the vast ocean, I often ponder the wonder of it all. It’s a big ocean, and to think that I’m lucky enough to catch fish more often than not is nothing short of amazing. Just think how much beachfront we have right here along Plum Island and the other surrounding beaches.

Even those evenings when the fish are not cooperative, the surfcasting experience can be a great way to unwind after a busy day in the “real” world. Beyond offering an excellent place for contemplative thought, the beach offers many wildlife shows that can sometimes rival the fishing.

Whatever your pleasure, be it casting plugs into the breaking waves, or sending out a baited hook and relaxing in your beach chair, surfcasting has many rewards for the taking.

* Reprinted from 2002*