Sept. 12th Fishing Report

Dear Fishermen and Friends,
Most fishing locations have four key species, which they consider a Grand Slam.  On Nantucket, we consider a slam to be, a Striped Bass, a Bluefish, a Bonito and a False Albacore.  As a Fisherman, I hold September sacred for a variety of reasons.  The weather is generally perfect.  There is more traffic at Great Point than the Rotary and best of all, all month you have a shot at catching a Grand Slam.  I hope I’m not making it sound easy, because it is not. But the chase is a blast. Generally, you know when you have a shot at one. Perhaps you catch a Bonito and a Bass in the early morning.  For the rest of the day, the hair stands up on the back of your neck, because you know you within striking distance of a pretty fun accomplishment on Nantucket.
This weekend I got a call from a friend James Hatton, who is a very accomplished beach fisherman.  He was a Bonito away from a Slam on Great Point from the beach. That is awesome to have that level of success. It gives us all something to look forward to and to work towards.
False Albacore are on everyone’s minds these days.  Most of my buddies are trying to catch one in August, mostly to say they did it as they are never here this early.  There are still not tons of fish here, but they are worth targeting.  Fishing from the beach, spend most of your time on Great Point.  Target these fast fish with a metal like a Deadly Dick or an Epoxy Minnow from Hogy. Make sure you have fresh line and hold on. Most of these fish have been caught on the outside, but as they fill in, they’ll be on both side of the point. As they fill into our fishery, we start to see more and more pods come through.  Just these last few days, we’ve seen bigger pods all along the North Shore and on the East Side of the Island.  The pods are generally smaller and more difficult to target, in the next couple of weeks, we’ll see more fish enter our fishery and become more predictable. For now though, head out to the Jetties and look for active turns and look for fish to slash the water underneath them.
Striped Bass continue to be very prevalent.  These can often be the elusive fish in the Slam as our waters are touching 70 degrees.  Striped Bass though may be our most predictable fishery.  They are still consistently on the south shore at night, stretching from Miacomet to Madaket. During the day, we are finding these fish throughout the western rips and in good numbers. It’s not crazy to fish for a tide and catch 10+ bass.  That is pretty remarkable for this time of year.
Bonito numbers seem to be down overall this year, but there are still decent numbers of fish around.  The latter half of the east tide on the Bonito Bar, is by far the most consistent fishery. The production will vary though so be patient if you do not get right into them. From the beach, it seems you need to be on the inside of Great Point at first light to have a shot.
The east side of the Island is loaded with giant bluefish. These guys are aggressive and on the surface.  Old Man is also holding plenty of fish and a few albies are mixed in.
With our waters warming we are hearing and seeing some strange things in our waters. There were rumors of a Manatee swimming around. Capt Marc on Just do it Too saw a hammerhead shark at Great Point and Capt Josh Eldridge on Monomoy caught a Barracuda on the Critter Cruise. I wish I could make this stuff up, but it’s crazy fun out there now. Just go wet a line and see what you catch.  If it’s not a crazy exotic fish, you are probably well on your way to a Nantucket Slam.