How do I define the demarcation line for the start of a new saltwater fishing season? Preparation begins after the last trip in the fall so that doesn't work. Other people have now caught striped bass in waters that I fish in Massachusetts, but that doesn't feel quite right (kind of like "electricity" when tagging team mates free in capture the flag...?). I have yet to catch a bass and I haven't yet run any charters. How about this for qualifications? I spent yesterday helping my A#1 client take delivery of his brand new Southport 272 and then fished for stripers myself for an hour at sunset. I'll take it.
The Southport 272 (here's one review with photos) is a gorgeous boat that is incredibly well built. We went for a short sea trial in Boston Harbor from the Smith Yacht Sales base at the Hingham Shipyard and I spent some time playing around with the electronics, getting to know the impressive systems set up by Navtronics. The boat is equipped with an Optimus 360 Joystick Control from SeaStar and holy hannah, is this a game changer. I'll post much more about this boat, the way we set it up, how we equip it, and what we learn as we start to use it.
When I got back from the boat I noticed that the tide was dropping out of the huge saltmarsh that drains into Cohasset Harbor. I rigged a couple of rods and headed over to the spot where I caught my first fly rod striped bass in May of 1992. I can tell you the exact spot on the ledge where I was standing, casting a Mickey Finn streamer on my Sage RPL 5 weight that my folks had just given me for my college graduation gift. I wasn't able to repeat those results, but it still felt great to be fishing for stripers again and I drove home with no doubt in my mind that the season of 2016 has started for me.
Hope to see you on the water soon.
Capt. Peter Fallon
Gillies & Fallon Guide Service, LLC