|Cape AnnLike last week the Cape Ann area striper fishing remained slower than expected.
Steve P. reported landing a fish here and there around area beachfronts with no particularly large fish.
We had heard of a good bite happening to the south at Marblehead (Castle Rock) and at the Greenbelt in Magnolia.
Two main reasons for the (I believe) for the poorer than expected number of stripers in these waters is a combination of fewer stripers and the scarcity of bait forage. And this is also the case for the Essex/Castle Neck area as well. We are all hoping that the bait situation improves.
I have heard reports from S. Maine indicating better striper action (lot's of Mack's and sandeels) there so far this season compared to last, so that is a good sign for anglers up there.
Mike Ward reported the following for the Cape Ann area;
a breakthrough of sorts, as the stripers finally showed up in thin numbers along the rocks on the NW side of Cape Ann, between Seaside Cemetery and Annisquam Lighthouse. Two short prospecting trips yielded several fish in the 26 - 28" range from Friday - Sunday last week.
Sunday's soupy weather seemed to actually perk things up a bit. All fish taken on top water spinning lures.
Merrimack River Plum Island
The totally hot action of 10 days ago has cooled down quite a bit from last Monday thru yesterday with an "on again off again" action reported by most anglers we talked with as well as our own experiences. Capt Al had consistent good action over last weekend as evidenced by the smiles displayed in the photo below.
The main difference at the Merrimack is the concentration of baitfish with the Macks moving out off the mouth and the sandeels have thinned as well.
We did note that the worm and crab hatch has begun with stripers holed up along the estuary marsh grass at flood tides.
We also noted swarms of super small sandeels or immature Sargasso eels on the flats Wednesday and Thursday. Capt Al and I fished the rising tide early Thursday morning and did not see many large stripers anywhere on the flat. And that played out as we drifted Joppa for a couple of hours with a few stripers each to 25 inches.
A number of boats were chasing the smaller stripers that appeared to be feasting on the eel swarm along the Joppa channel edge. Later in the tide we made our way down to the mouth and hooked up a few quality stripers up to 33 inches before calling it a day. The liveliners drifting between the sheets were also not taking many fish either.
But at this time of June, things can change by the hour especially with the crab and worm hatch underway. So the fishing could go from poor to good within a single tide cycle.
Fishing partners Terry and Steve with two of several quality stripers landed while out with Capt Al last weekend
Capt Skip Montello