Friday, January 18, 2019


It's that time of the year.  I've already been off and running with my winter seminars on striper and carp fishing. Next week brings me to the first big outdoor show of the season, the New England Fishing Expo in Boxborough, MA, right off Rt. 495. This show, located at the Boxboro Regency runs from Friday., Jan. 25 to Sunday, Jan. 27.  This is one of those up and coming shows that seems to get better and bigger every year. It has loads of booths and vendors about every type of fishing from fly fishing to freshwater bass to saltwater fishing and more.  This show also features an all star seminar line-up of some of the very best fishermen in the Northeast.
I will be there on both Saturday and Sunday.  On Saturday I will be running my new striper show of 2019 called "Stripers on Artificials". This will take place at 5:00 PM.  On Sunday I will run my new carp fishing show called "Understanding Carp Fishing". It will take place at 11:00 AM.
Hope to see many of you at the show. What better way to cure the winter doldrums than to attend one of these big shows.  And, by the way, this one includes free parking!
For more information, visit the website,

Friday, January 11, 2019

Another Winter Option: White Perch

Here's a white perch landed today on a
small homemade bucktail jig spiced with
a plastic curly tail. They are active in the
cold winter months.
I can't seem to find any holdover stripers, but in my travels I have been finding white perch. These fish, close relatives of the striper, inhabit many of our brackish waters where freshwater rivers dump into bays, tidal ponds and even the oceanfront. White perch roam around these brackish waters to feed in the winter.  They can be found anywhere from the freshwater sections of rivers and streams to the brackish areas, and I have even caught them in salt water. They remain one of our most active winter fish.
I've caught many white perch in some of the freshwater lakes around inland New England.  These are land locked fish which were either stocked or got trapped years ago when streams and rivers were dammed up. The freshwater white perch are considerably smaller than their relatives that inhabit brackish waters.  I've landed many over 2 lbs. in brackish waters while targeting holdover stripers.  Years ago, I landed one which would have been a state record had I officially weighed it.  Rather than kill it for the record, I released it.
These fish are aggressive even in the cold water.  They have small mouths so your need to go small with the artificials.  I was out this week and I landed a good number of them on small 1/8 oz. white bucktail jigs spiced with a small plastic curly tail on light tackle. Sometimes they will hit other fluke-like plastics or just curly tails mounted on jigheads.  Some will even hit small metal.  When I used to fish the rivers of the Cape for sea run brown trout, I often caught these perch on shrimp flies.
So, if you are looking to bend a rod in ice free water in the next few weeks, white perch are waiting in the brackish rivers of southern New England.  They are one more option for those cabin fevered anglers looking for winter action.

Monday, January 7, 2019

Still Fishing, but Not for Stripers

How's this for a January carp!  This fish, landed on Jan.1 while
fishing in the the Carp Anglers Group First Fishing Folly
Tournament, was the biggest carp landed in the event in the
northern division of the US. It weighed 20 lbs.
I've always believed in going after the "best bet" in fishing. Right now, for me, it is not stripers. I know there are a scant few being taken in holdover locations, but those fish seem to be few and far between unless you hit a lucky day.
Instead of chasing stripers, I have been chasing carp in the freshwaters of RI and MA on the warm and ice free days. With this warm weather of the past couple of weeks, the fishing for carp has been very good considering the time of year. While I usually can find some small ones at this time of year, I have found some decent ones in January this year.  I've put two "big" fish of over 20 lbs. (weighed) on the bank, the first time I have ever landed 20 lb. carp in January in open water. I've also had some good numbers of fish between 10 and 15 lbs. All have been caught on sweet corn fished on a hair rig. If you are looking for carp fishing tips, check out my carp fishing blog at
My son Jon and I have tried several times for stripers in the Providence River, a hotspot over the last two decades.  In recent years, this spot has dried right up and there was not a fish to be found in the outings we made.  I have not heard of a single striper being caught there this winter. Ten years ago I was catching over a thousand stripers a year here in the cold months of Jan., Feb., and March. I have no idea why this place has died.