Regardless of how good the fishing is right now, here’s a very good reason to pick up a good book about fishing. Author Ed Doherty is a Massachusetts fishermen who lives to cast the Cape Cod Canal and has just written Seven Miles After Sundown. It’s tight with a lifetime of stories, counsel, characters and spot on recommendations. East End Eddie, as he’s known on the bank, has seen the canal change during his long tenure there and has a well researched sure thing secret spot. He shared that location with me on a plane ride to Washington DC to talk fish with our legislators a few months back.
As has often been the case with fishermen with whom I cross paths, Eddie is a total character. He enlivens every conversation with a dynamite authentic Boston accent flavoring a rare knowledge of both recreational and political/bureaucratic side of catching and protecting fish. His book is worth every hour you spend reading through his stories and observations about fishing what has become almost an out of control spectacle of big fish being hauled up on the rocks through wicked tides and currents.
There’s an honest toughness to his tone sometimes; Eddy spent a career in the courts, watching wise guys and petty criminals go through the system so the Canal was a perfect getaway from all that. You can find his new book on Amazon or contact him at BigDitchProductions on the web.
Don’t save this one for winter; there’s bass in the canal now and Eddie has the tips you’re going to need.
As for that secret location, well, as all good fishermen are such kings at keeping secret sweet spots secret, Eddie swore me to keep it that way and I’m not messing with that guy.
To the west of The Ditch, bass and blues have been pushing squid and small rain bait right to the surface lately, often around the center and east walls protecting Galilee. They seem to be feeding together, right at the surface, speeding around in clockwise rotations. They seem to have their mouths open, creating foam as they go. It’s strange.
It’s always amazing how full that Camp Cronin parking lot can be so late into the night with people casting from the wall. Strong swells certainly will push scup and those prolific black sea in close, making it a fun place to spend a few hours if you keep your boots planted on the dry rocks. A few nights back, two fishermen were chasing half a dozen schools of small bass and bluefish in circles in front of the Pt. Judith Lighthouse from a spotless center console.
The first twenty minutes were just reminders of how frustrating fishing can be when you throw everything except the tackle box itself at a school of frenzied hungry fish with a return of only green weed. The schools rotated east to west then back again, making it tough to keep up without pushing them down. Then one bluefish unwillingly came aboard and exhaled a pile of very whole squid, answering the evening’s question.
Elisa Conti Cahil and her crew at Snug Harbor Marina just held their 38th Annual Snug Harbor Shark Tourney. Ninety-five fishermen aboard twenty-five boats from Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Florida, Delaware, New York, Connecticut and New Hampshire were able to weigh in only two sharks. The offshore bite has been slow for sure but there’s a silver lining to these slim pickings. The tourney only allows edible sharks like makos and threshers. Like many of us, they don’t want to relive the glory days of sharks hanging from the gallows then overflowing from Dumpsters when everyone headed over to Milt’s for a few dozen ‘Gansetts. They require a minimum length on makos of 83” for females and 71” for males and as none made the cut, no makos were needlessly harpooned. Cheers to Snug Harbor for all they do to protect the fishery.
At day’s end, Tim Sanscuci on the F/V Outta Time hoisted a 230 pound thresher for second place in that division and the Hidden Weight Award. Chris Napolitano and his father Richard on the F/V Knot Reel Teeth brought home the grand prize and first place for a thresher with a 328 pounder. Interestingly, the Unusual Catch prize went to Phil Papineau and Jim Duffy.
Typically, this is a social media based award for unusual sharks but since this year even makos were considered unusual, they were winners. Phil stacked up the awards with individual and team tagging prizes for releasing a dusky and four other sharks.
And speaking of soon-to-be catch and release hero’s South County’s Bob Buscher has now caught and released 560 largemouth bass this year. In the time it took to type that, he likely caught two more. Bob is enjoying his 15 minutes of fishermen fame and that’s a very good thing. He’s a dedicated fisherman and family man who just loves being out on his boat.
Cheers Bob, we’ll follow you right to year’s end. Then, we’ll turn a new calendar page for you.
I'm a fisherman, occasional hunter, occasionally sarcastic outdoors writer and father. My weekly outdoors column, Fish Wrap, can be found at www.fishwrapwriter.com, read more at On The Water magazine as well!
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