Author Archives: Corey Gammill

Nantucket Squid and the role they play in our fishery…

Anyone who has flown to Nantucket over the last 7-8 years will tell you about the dozens of trawlers that are going back and forth south of the island.  Most of the island has now realized that these trawlers are Squid Fishermen and they can tell you about the nantucket squid debate.  The way they fish is to lay a 5 inch net on top of a 1.5 inch net and drag this net along the bottom floor.  There is no question that calamari is a “hot” dish in restaurants these days and thus the market for fresh calamari is as strong as ever.  It was also discovered 7-8 years ago that Nantucket has some of the best Striped Bass fishing because of all the ocean run squid we have.  South of the island, Squid for years and years have laid their eggs (Squid Mops) on the ocean floor and Nantucket and Cape fishermen have benefitted from this reproduction ground with incredible striped bass fishing.  The Sound and Nantucket do not boast natural striped bass habitat, but our abundance of the stripers number one food source does keep them coming back every year… until that food source is taken.  

Squid and nantucket Squid in particular! are the perfect food source for these fish and they crave it.  The issue with Striped Bass and squid is that unless the squid are caught in a current (Think Rip) the striped Bass are not agile enough to catch them. South of the cape, west of nantucket and east of nantucket is loaded with Sandbars and rips that give striped bass the opportunity to feed. This supplys the fish with food and recreational fisherman with a mainstay activity that has been a center piece of cape and islands life for years.

The issue now though is these Squid Trawlers are not only catching up the bait, leaving the bass without food, but they are destroying the habitat upon which the squid reproduce.  Many of Nantucket’s fishermen have worked incredibly hard trying to push off these trawlers and we have had some success.  The state is keeping the boats out of nantucket waters during the summer season, but an archaic law is allowing these trawlers within three miles of the island at the beginning and end of the season.  

So the long and short summary is the squid are important and the fight to push off the trawlers is just as important. 

 

 

I love June Fishing on Nantucket

I love June Fishing on Nantucket…. I don’t know quite how else to say it.  If you ask 100 people on Nantucket what their favorite month is my guess is most say September, some say July or August and some say October… I love June!

Why do you love June fishing on Nantucket you ask? June to me is the beginning, and I love beginnings.  I love new, I love starting over, I love what could be’s and the potential and having everything to look forward to.  You know why else I love June… Is because the Striped Bass fishing is awesome!   Early in the month the fish are SMALL and active.  They wack small baits and while you are often catching 22 inchers, they feel like monsters as you are on super lite tackle in super shallow water.  Than, one day, out of nowhere you start seeing squid shoot around the boat and you call up your friends and say…fish must be in the rips.  And this is when the fun begins as when Striped Bass enter the rips chasing Squid…. hold on!  Fun is about to happen. And what is cool is it is like the fish have an underwater microphone, because once one spot turns on, 2-3 days later another does, and 2-3 days later another and …you get the drift.  I just love June. 

I love that the weather is unpredictable, I love that the days are long, I love that the light is gorgeous, I love that I wear a wool cap in the morning and that the water is clear and cold.

If you love fishing, if you love cool experiences, come spend June with us on the water… You won’t be let down.

Getting to know Captain Corey the fishing boat captain and hockey enthuiast

Jon Lord is a great friend and a great interviewer.  He asked if he could pick my brain about the life of a fishing boat captain, Captain Corey.  Of course I said yes.  What a fun experience.  Jon opened the interviewer picking my brain about hockey.  While I am no “expert,” I love the sport.  I have played and coached it and have been a fan for years.  After picking my head about hockey we got into my view of the nantucket fishing world.  It was a fun interview and Jon asked me some incredibly fun questions that made me think.  I so appreciated the opportunity to get myself excited for the summer.  I hope you take the opportunity to listen and get a taste of our world that we live in during the summer.

The Interview

My good friend and charter fishing boat captain Corey Gammill joins the podcast to discuss the NHL Playoffs (1:00), coaching and teaching professional athletes like Jonathan Quick, Nick Bonino and Cam Atkinson (4:00), becoming a fishing boat captain on Nantucket (7:00), making work about more than money (12:00), the not so glamorous life in a resort community (16:00), dealing with entitled customers (20:00), competition with other fishing captains (26:00), irrational fears on the water (29:00), climate change and the perilous future of the fishing industry (34:00) and the value of catch and release (42:00).

Thomas and Thomas Fly Rods

BFO/BFT are proud to be fishing with/carrying Thomas and Thomas Fly Rods this year.  Thomas and Thomas is a historic name in fly-fishing and are known for hand building amazing rods in Northwest Mass.  Like many companies their hold back is the inability to mass produce rods, because they make them of such high quality.  This forces the price point to be in the high $800 range.  For years that price point was frowned upon, but recently, as fly-fishing is becoming back in vogue and people realize and understand the cost associated with fishing in high end areas, they are becoming more and more comfortable with the high price point.  To add to it, the quality is unmatched and Thomas and Thomas stands behind every product they sell.

Our Go-To rods on the boats have been the Exocess 250 and 350 grain rods.  These rods have a stiff backbone and are designed to throw the heavier lines in really short order.  On top of their product, Thomas and Thomas is trying to expose their process to the world.  They are rebuilding their building room to be very customer friendly.  They want those using their rods to interact with those building their rods.  And Further, they are building a brewery on location to really make sure it is a go-to destination.

The ownership and management group are dialed in, not just to what customers want and quality, but making sure the whole experience for everyone is just awesome….

Buying a Boat Nantucket

I am thinking of buying a boat, Should I? Obviously this is a tough question.  And there are so many questions to ask, what do you want to use the boat for?  How much can you afford to spend on the boat? How much can you afford annually to upkeep the boat?   How big a boat do you think you could handle?

The first question is important as if you want to fish offshore you are going to need a bigger boat with two engines, where if you want to take your family to the beach for the day you will want a boat with a shallow draft that you do not beating up.  Most people want a combination package, something that can do it all.  As with most things, use the right tool for the right job, otherwise nothing else will be perfect.   Now can a 24 foot boat go to great point and get up on the beach of course.  There are boats that can do both, but a 24 foot is not perfect for either, but if you want two tasks done, one boat can accomplish two tasks.

Next question is big and obvious, what can you afford to spend?  But what is most important is not up front, but annual expenditure.  Even a 20 foot runaround will cost you 4-6k per year before fuel in maintenance, dockage, insurance, storage, winterization etc… While a 24-30 foot boat can easily set you back 8-10k.  Can you afford this upkeep? 

Also its important to remember that when you sell your boat you will lose a good deal of money.  If you purchase a boat for 50 and sell it 3 years later because you didn’t use it for 35, that is a loss.

Another great option is to A) join a boating club so you can see whether you actually use a boat enough for it to be worth it.  B) go out on a charter 8-10 times a season to see if you like being on a boat as much as you think?   Unless you are just looking for a runabout, both of these options tend to be cheaper than buying a boat. 

Another great option is to buy a runabout so you can do the family stuff together, but commit to 4-5 charters so you can get the fishing in that you want.  Either way, you are thinking about getting on the water, which we love!