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Martha's vineyard fishing

Old 06-09-2019, 06:28 PM
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Default Martha's vineyard fishing

I'm fortunate to be staying in Aquinnah this summer with access to a boat. I'll be going out of menemsha pond.

I'm new to boat fishing the area, having only previously fished from shore.

Would anyone be willing to offer some advice for catching stripers in the lobsterville, philbin, cliffs area?

I'll be going with kids, so trolling is preferred as their casting ability is so-so at best.

Do Mojo's and tube and worm work this time of year? How about bunker spoons?

Open to any advice you are willing to share. Give some kids are in tow putting fish onboard is more important than finding the lunker bass.

Many thanks to anyone willing to share some advice

Old 06-09-2019, 06:51 PM
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What size boat? Lucas Shoal is NE of Menemsha and will hold fluke, scup, sea bass, and the occasional striper & bluefish so there's plenty of action for the kids.

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Old 06-09-2019, 06:58 PM
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Should have mentioned boat size.

It is a 21 foot mako center console.

Any insight into areas to troll?
Old 06-09-2019, 07:53 PM
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(Note I speak as possibly the worst fisherman on the forum.) For you, coming our of Menemsha, I believe there would be some good trolling around Sow and Pigs reef across on Cuttyhunk. Or just along the south east side of Cuttyhunk. (red circle on picture) You could do some fishing in the morning and then stop in to Cuttyhunk for lunch. There is usually some type of burger shack on the docks and always some ice cream. A fun/different kind of place to go (read not much there but peace and quiet). You could search this forum for a lot of other info on Cuttyhunk.

And I frequently see a lot of boats fishing in Devils Bridge area right off Gay Head (blue circle in picture).

But if kids are smallish <11 years old or so, you can't go wrong by putting a seaworm on a hook, dropping it to just off the bottom, and getting some scup on light tackle. Young kids will love it. IMHO for small kids with little patience, this is the way to go - hard to miss. Though you may still need to buy some fish to actually eat.

Good luck.
Old 06-09-2019, 08:01 PM
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Right now middle ground is filled with small Stripers.

Small white jumping minnow or similar(colt sniper)tossed into the seam is really easy. You can cast them or even drift and twitch them.
Old 06-10-2019, 11:26 PM
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Lots of good fishing all around there imo. I like fishing in Menensha Pond! Big stripers. Good scup and stuff right outside the channel.
Old 06-11-2019, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Paul T View Post
(Note I speak as possibly the worst fisherman on the forum.) For you, coming our of Menemsha, I believe there would be some good trolling around Sow and Pigs reef across on Cuttyhunk. Or just along the south east side of Cuttyhunk. (red circle on picture) You could do some fishing in the morning and then stop in to Cuttyhunk for lunch. There is usually some type of burger shack on the docks and always some ice cream. A fun/different kind of place to go (read not much there but peace and quiet). You could search this forum for a lot of other info on Cuttyhunk.

And I frequently see a lot of boats fishing in Devils Bridge area right off Gay Head (blue circle in picture).

But if kids are smallish <11 years old or so, you can't go wrong by putting a seaworm on a hook, dropping it to just off the bottom, and getting some scup on light tackle. Young kids will love it. IMHO for small kids with little patience, this is the way to go - hard to miss. Though you may still need to buy some fish to actually eat.

Good luck.

I don’t think a 5 mile run across the Sound to Pig’s in a 21’ boat with small kids is a good suggestion.
Old 06-11-2019, 07:35 AM
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Depends on how old the kids are. On a decent day, it's an easy run in a 21 footer, even a Mako . Or he can run straight across and fish the south side of Quick's Hole or run along the north side of MV in either direction. So long as he stays clear of the rocky spots, he'll be fine.
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Old 06-11-2019, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by 02535 View Post
I'm fortunate to be staying in Aquinnah this summer with access to a boat. I'll be going out of menemsha pond.

I'm new to boat fishing the area, having only previously fished from shore.

Would anyone be willing to offer some advice for catching stripers in the lobsterville, philbin, cliffs area?

I'll be going with kids, so trolling is preferred as their casting ability is so-so at best.

Do Mojo's and tube and worm work this time of year? How about bunker spoons?

Open to any advice you are willing to share. Give some kids are in tow putting fish onboard is more important than finding the lunker bass.

Many thanks to anyone willing to share some advice
It's probably worth hiring and up island guide for a bit, especially before/after the full on tourist season.
Old 06-11-2019, 12:55 PM
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Originally Posted by 02535 View Post

I'm new to boat fishing the area, having only previously fished from shore.

I'll be going with kids, so trolling is preferred as their casting ability is so-so at best.

Do Mojo's and tube and worm work this time of year? How about bunker spoons?

Many thanks to anyone willing to share some advice
If you are new to boat fish, avoid Sow and Pigs. For people who are very comfortable boat fishing they (The Pigs) are very hard to troll. Lobster Pots are a PITA. To those not familiar with boat fishing they are outright dangerous with very large rocks just under the surface. The other suggestion above are great. If you just want to put fish on the deck three way jigging Devil's Bridge (off the Gay Head Light) and Lucas Shoals (the first current line you see and you head towards Quicks/Robinsons Holes) are the best bet.... lots of sea bass, scup and fluke. You do have to weed through the small fish to get to the keepers so check the regulations before you go.

If you are going to troll, wireline (PITA for kids ... well actually anybody) is traditionally the most effective. But lead core is easier to start with. This time a year parachute style jigs (bucktails) with what used to be red pork rind and is now some sort of synthetic red rubber best imitates squid. But the jigging motion these require is VERY tiring for kids (and some adults))Some time in early July I used to switch over to Tube and Worm. No one really knows what this imitates (eels, monster sand eels....???) but it works. Low and slow. And if you think you are going too slow, then slow down some more.

https://www.onthewater.com/video/fishing-tube-worm

I never really used bunker spoons as they require unique style rods.... And strangely no one up here uses Mojo's. I think the structure we fish is too small and the trolling passes to short to make them effective. But start with a little squid or some worms. Drop them straight up and down on Devils Bridge or Lucas and you will catch little fish. Rigging a three way or slider rig would be best.

Mike

Last edited by Parapapam; 06-11-2019 at 01:01 PM.
Old 06-11-2019, 01:08 PM
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Don’t discount teaching your kids how to bounce jigs through rips, on drop offs, etc.. can pick up a wide array of species this way and it is relatively easy. Over time you will end up with hundreds of marks on your plotter (well likely less if only a summer).

And I agree with Mike, sow and pigs is not for beginners.
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Old 06-11-2019, 09:20 PM
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Thanks all,

Heading it tomorrow for an exploratory trip. I really appreciate the advice.

I'm looking forward to seeing what can be found and expect to have a great summer in the water.

Old 06-11-2019, 11:02 PM
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Be careful with rocks around Devils Bridge, theres some shallow ones. And don't forget about some excellent fishing closer than you think, like from the dock, lol.
Look forward to your reports...
Old 06-12-2019, 09:53 AM
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You are indeed lucky, you are right in some of the best near-shore fishing in the northeast. You may very well find schoolie bass enough to keep you busy without leaving the pond...look out for birds diving.

The Lucas Shoal suggestion is a great one for kids, it is a short trip from Menemsha and easy fishing with pretty much sure hookups. Have some squid and a heavy (3 oz) bucktail or fluke rig and drag it along the bottom over the obvious rips or tide lines. If you are on the bottom you will probably hook something.

In Menemsha bight, look for birds and schools of small bass and/or blues. If you are up early turn left out of the harbor and look for surface action near the bar for maybe some larger fish.

As advised, there are fish in the rocks much of the time but it is probably best to keep clear of the big rips like sow and pigs and devils bridge but on a nice day cruise towards Nomans or around the corner to Squibnocket, there are generally plenty of fish. near moving water.

A day with a guide will be a worthwhile investment. There are few real secret spots around that area, it is more the right tide, right time of day, luck. Fish but the ton one day , none the next. But there will be some kind ground fish on Lucas pretty much all summer on a moving tide.
Old 06-12-2019, 12:13 PM
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If you can get your kids into some bluefish that's the ticket. Horseshoe Shoal, Middle ground, keep your eyes open along the beaches and keep a couple casting rigs with steel leader at the ready.
Old 06-12-2019, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Harpoon View Post
If you can get your kids into some bluefish that's the ticket. Horseshoe Shoal, Middle ground, keep your eyes open along the beaches and keep a couple casting rigs with steel leader at the ready.
Horseshoe shoals from Menemsha for bluefish? No recommendation for 50w’s with wire line and umbrella rigs, that way they could fight 3 fish at a time?
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Old 06-17-2019, 07:34 AM
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All, Quick update after a couple trips. Thanks to you all!

Given I'm fishing with little kids in tow (5 and 7) 2 hours is about it before they are shot.

Small schoolie stripers at middle ground casting plugs into the rips. Tons of fun, with fish to 20 inches or so.

We managed a few scup and a blackfish off Lucas Shoal using squid strips on white bucktails jigging near the bottom. The weather was not cooperating for spending an hour drifting with squid on a sliding bottom rig, but I'll be back on the next nice day.

Tried trolling some some white bucktails with pork rind on leadcore around devils bridge to no avail. I was about equidistant between the shore and the "31" can. I plan on heading back and jigging near the bottom to see if I have any luck.

Couple questions for those willing to share:
-is now a decent time of year to try tube and work on leadcore near devils bridge. If not, what is the preferred lure choice? In gear speeds are about 2.5 knots, so I'm assuming I'm too fast and need to come in and out of gear to slow down.
-casting toward dogfish bar worthwhile if there is no surface action?

Thanks all, you have helped tremendously to get this summer off to a good start
Old 06-17-2019, 08:01 AM
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I haven't dragged wire (or lead core) in a long time. But if I were, I would jig bucktails this time of year. In July I would switch to tube/worm. The key to any striper trolling is to get the bait to the bottom. 2.5 knots is fine. A little slower wouldn't be bad either. The key to bucktails is how you jig them (really tough with a crew of little kids). You need to snap them backwards very quickly them let them drop while still maintaining "contact" or feeling with the jig. It will get exhausting for kids. Just dragging the bucktail around won't work. They need to be "worked."

Surface action is the best sign. But fish can be there without surface action. But I would stick to the places you have already have had luck. They are closer to a "sure thing."

Mike
Old 06-17-2019, 02:51 PM
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I assume you mean parachute jigs and not bucktails. As was said, they are a lot of work to troll correctly. Super low speed not as critical as tube and worm as the jigging of the rod gives them a stop and drop then accelerate action like a squid. Trolling swimmers can be pretty productive with kids.

Old 06-17-2019, 09:09 PM
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If wire line jigging parachutes, make sure to tip with a red pork rind substitute. ( I heard they don't sell the real thing anymore but I think I've got a few rotting away in the basement.) You can try jigging in 30 to 40 feet of water inside middle ground (near shore) but it can be weedy. I used to do better close to the rock piles nearer to vineyard haven end of the rip at that spot. Better option, cross over and try Robinson's hole south side with tide dropping from buzzards bay into the sound (work north into the current) or north side of quicks hole with current moving from sound into buzzards bay. Quicks is easier with fewer rock concerns. Just fish the north side of the hole in 30 plus feet of water.

It's been a while since I bass fished with any meaning but fishing the elizabeth island holes with wire line was pretty much a gaurantee for a few 25 plus pound fish with the odd 40 lber this time of year back 15 years ago. We used to switch from wire line to live eels at cuttyhunk right around June 10th, but wire would still catch later into the summer.

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