Wednesday, October 31, 2018


A white Cocahoe trailing off a float has been the hot producer.
The past two days have been the best back-to-back days I've had fishing this year. The stripers were around in incredible numbers. The sight of these vast schools of fish have brought back memories of "the good ole days".
Yesterday I saw about the biggest school of fish I have ever witnessed. I fished in an area along the oceanfront where there were several large schools of fish at first.  Thousands of birds were diving and acres of fish were breaking after huge schools of peanut bunker in what started off as three to five schools of fish in a mile long stretch of shoreline.  Much of it was close to shore and reachable. At one point, late in the afternoon, all of those schools of stripers, birds and bait came together in one MASSIVE school. I estimate this school of fish was at least a half a mile long and hundreds of feet wide. I have never seen a school like this. I just sat there in awe watching as this blitz unfolded.
In the last two days, my son Jon and I have landed well over 200 stripers.  Nearly all were schoolies in the 20 to 25 inch range, but we also had a couple of small keepers. All were taken on a float with a three inch Cocahoe on a jighead trailing off (see photo at right).
As I sat there watching the big blitz, I couldn't help but thinking that we are in for some incredible fishing in the next year or two when all these schoolies reach small keeper size.
But, for now, the good ole days are back!

Thursday, October 25, 2018


Here's a small keeper that I landed last week
after dark. Recent fishing has been an on/off
deal as the weather is playing havoc with
the fishing.
Last week I hit four days of some of the best fishing I have seen in recent years along the RI oceanfront in October.  Large schools of peanut bunker up to 5 inches long seemed to be everywhere, and they were luring big numbers of stripers, many of which were keepers. Then, a cold front hit and everything ended. The bait moved on and the big numbers of stripers disappeared. That was followed by several days of real tough fishing with a few fish here and there for those few guys willing to work for them.
The weather has turned brutal, feeling much more like early December weather rather than October weather.  And, the wind has been relentless.  One day it's blowing hard northwest, the next day is a gale from the northeast, the next day a huge blow from the southwest.  I think all that windy turmoil has put the gaff into consistent fishing.  As long as this weather remains unstable, I think the fishing will continue to be a hit or miss deal.
I was down the oceanfront yesterday and while I only managed one schoolie, I saw phenomenal numbers of birds, bait, and breaking fish about a quarter mile offshore. At one point I saw a school of fish that had to be a half mile long. They never came to within a cast of shore. This has been going on in multiple locations along the oceanfront in this big northwest wind of the last couple of days.  That wind which tends to push migrating fish offshore.
The migration is full steam right now.  It is only a matter of being at the right spot at the right time when mayhem comes ashore.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Going Big

This Sebile stick shad has landed good numbers
of keeper bass for us this week.
It's been a real  hot week of fishing for stripers here in RI.  That terrific fishing has been fueled by an influx of massive amounts of large peanut bunker.  I'm talking peanuts in the 4, 5 and even size inch lengths. With bait that size, many larger plugs and jigs have been working. Here are a few examples of what has caught most of our fish in the last week:
Sebile Stick Shads- My son Jon scored a thirty-five fish night ( at least a half dozen keepers) using this plug in a size 155 that we frequently use at the Canal. I used it the next day to take several more keepers. Seems like the bigger fish were keying on this plug.
Sebile Magic Swimmers- Jon has been using this 6 1/2 inch Sebile in a Ghostescent color to score many more fish, especially in the daytime. It works great when the fish are on large peanut bunker.
Big Bucks- I used a 1 1/2 oz. bucktail jig with a 4 inch white curly tail today to land 20 stripers (2 keepers) in some real rough water. The bucks have been very effective all week, especially in rough water.
Float and Big Buck- I've been using bigger bucktail jigs ( 3/4 ounce) off the float this week.  I had a 37 fish day (several keepers)  this week using this set-up when the stripers were just below the schools of peanut bunker in shallow water.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Cold Nights Lead to Hot Fishing

It was loaded with good size
schoolies in the 24 inch
range with some keepers
in the mix in the last couple
of days. This one was landed
on a Cocahoe today.
Air temperatures are dropping, water temperatures are dropping and the fish are now on the move. There has been a major uptick in fishing along the oceanfront in the last two days. Peanut bunker have moved along the oceanfront in big numbers attracting large numbers of stripers. The peanuts have also been a good size with the bait running 4 to 5 inches in length.  That "bigger" bait has attracted a lot of bigger fish.  While schoolies dominate the fishing, there have also been good numbers of small keeper stripers in the 28 to 32 inch range. Of the hundred or so stripers my son Jon and I have caught in the last two days, about 10 of them have been keepers.
The fishing has also been good in both the daytime and at night. We had our best night of the fall last night catching loads of stripers with many of them keepers.
The hot lures have been swimmers and stick shads at night and jigs, Jumpin Minnows and Sebile magic swimmers in the daytime.
Make no mistake about it.....the fall run is underway.

Jon Pickering holds a good size keeper that was landed after dark yesterday.
There have been good numbers of keepers around in the last two days.
Nighttime produced the best fish yesterday.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Should Be Better

Schoolies dominate the fishing scene in southern New England.
This one came from a recent outing in Boston Harbor.
Fishing is just ok for me right now.  It's October, the month that is supposed to be real good.  But, this October and recent Octobers, are not your father's or grandfather's October.  As I type this post, the temperature outside is in the 70's and I'll be fishing the oceanfront tonight in a t-shirt.  Welcome to global warming.  It's having a big effect on the fishing.
My sons and I have been out several times in the last week.  The results seem to be two or three fish an outing, and they are all schoolies. There is no evidence of any big numbers of fish or bait beginning to move southward.  That is what is going on here in RI.  Keepers, especially larger ones, are scarce. Blues are few and far between. Albie numbers, the few that have been around, are on a downhill slide and coming to an end.
But, all is not doom and gloom since November is only a few weeks away.  In recent years, November has been THE month to be fishing along the RI oceanfront.  We've seen huge numbers of schoolies, and more keepers than the rest of the year in recent Novembers. We might even a shot of big blues if we have big bait.  November is the new migration month here in RI and predators as well as huge amounts of bait should be migrating right along the south shore.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Photo of the Day.....Breaking Out of a Lull

This good size schoolie was one of more than a dozen fish that I landed today.
The past week has brought a lull to RI fishing for me, but today's action was a much
needed good day!