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Duxbury Fishing Thursday 10-14


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The stripers were in thick this morning out behind Clark's Island and in the Saquish Rip. The tide was running in and the stripers (with blues mixed in, I think) were feeding heavily. I put in at 8AM at Howland's Landing, farted around in Kingston Bay trying to get my crusty reel loosened up, and then paddled against the tide out to Clark's by around 9 o'clock. The birds were working the rip between Clark's Island and Saquish Beach and the fish were jumping every few minutes. I had steady action until about 10:30 or so. I had gear problems (I'm tossing this useless reel and getting a new one) and it took a while to figure out what lure they would take, so I didn't do as well as I should have.

With fish jumping all around me, I tried spin-casting the rubber shad I had been trolling on the way out, but they wouldn't touch it. Next time the school surfaced I tried my "Crocodile" big silver spoon, but again no hits. I put on a rubber sand eel for the next frenzy and got a quick strike, hooked up, but then he shook free. A few more tries with the sand eel, but they weren't interested. I could have hit them in the head with it and they would have just ignored me. "What are you eating?!" I yelled at the damn fish. It looked like the terns were picking up small baitfish, menhaden maybe, so I put on a small Kastmaster-type with a treble hook and chased the fish and birds out toward Saquish Head.

Some of the baitfish I saw jumping were bigger, like mackerel or herring, so it looked like there were some big game fish about. I got hooked up a second time with something HEAVY. Not wanting to lose a second fish, I set the hook hard and started aggressively retrieving him. But he ran under the boat and cut my line, taking my Kastmaster and leader with him. Damn! I'm guessing a big bluefish. The line was cut clean, and he probably got those razor sharp teeth on it as he came back past the taut line while passing under the boat. I should have given him more line to run with but the reel wasn't feeding out properly.

While I re-rigged with a second identical lure to the one just lost, the birds all disappeared. I had no idea which way they went. I started trolling back up between Clark's and the beach where there were occasional fish splashes and got another hard strike. My pole was almost pulled out of my PFD and the boat was swung around quickly by this big fish. It was on good, so I decided to try to play this one out and get it good and tired. I let it pull the boat around, dreaming of a big 36-40 inch striper down there that I would eventually lift onto my sprayskirt in glee. He was strong and heavy. "I've got you," I told him, "You're mine when you've had enough." He ran under the boat two or three times, and this time I just played out line to let him work. He was deep, and yes, heavy - I never got him anywhere near the surface. Suddenly the line went slack. Nooooooo!!!! He had gotten free, and I brought up a bare hook. I'm guessing a big bluefish again that finally tore himself off the hooks.

But the birds were still working up around Clark's and I soon hooked up again, finally landing a nice striper, but a short. I hand-lined him in as my reel had frozen up after the last battle with "Big Blue". There was still plenty of action, and I was casting into schools of jumping fish all around the boat, but I couldn't retrieve the line properly with the screwed up reel, so that was it for me. All those fish and all I had landed was one short striper, and let two monsters get away!

I headed back to Howland's, happy but disappointed. It had been a great morning of fishing, with perfect calm weather, but I was empty-handed once again. I'm mightily tempted to go back there and try again tomorrow morning.

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WOW! DAMN! Wish I was there. DAMN!

Isn't that awesome, two break-offs by two big fish.

Tip: if one fish breaks off, peel off ten feet of line from the reel, cut it, and re-tie the new or old lure.

Chances are that a fish which breaks off also

stretches and abrades the line below the lure, making

another break off (and lost lure) a near-inevitablity.

Damn, damn! I wish I was there. Sounds like a classic

Dux day. And I thought the place was toasted after getting so skunked there so thoroughly last week.

Maybe I'll do Sunday there with you if you can

convince your buddy. Otherwise it's the Cape for me on

Sunday if the wind holds off.

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Maybe I need to launch closer to the low tide to find the fish.

I left Howland on Monday an hour or so before high tide and paddled downwind to the north end of Clarks. Then it was southward in the lee of Clarks and out around Saquish Head for the free ride eastward past the Gurnet. A lone seal tried to stare me down a few times until I was just too close. The sun was still bright and getting low as I paddled northward in the shore break. Most of the way hundreds of sanderlings performed their synchronous aerobatics all around me. I landed on Duxbury Beach and crossed over to the bay at the south end OSV access. From there it was a straight three mile route back toward the Standish Monument with the sun fading into advancing clouds. It almost looked like a winter sky.

Out on the bay I had seen some early arrival scoters and Brant geese along with the usual cormorants. But I didn’t see terns or gulls working anywhere. There certainly was no action at all on the swimming lures I was trolling. Yet there were some fish surfacing on Kingston Bay after the boat was on the car.

I think I’ll plan the next fishing excursion south of the Cape or on Buzzards Bay.

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Don: The action has usually been good on an incoming tide, up until an hour or so before high. Then it all drops off. Haven't had much luck on a falling tide in there. Nor on a windy day.

As for Buzzards Bay, Stripers were active in Marion Harbor and up on the Weweantic River on Sunday.


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