The Cape was formed as a result of glacier movement more than 20,000 years ago. Cape Cod itself is considered a peninsula, some will argue that with the building of the canal we are an island) formed from the terminal moraine, meaning advance and retreat, of the Laurentian ice sheet. In 1909, the construction of the Cape Cod Canal began, leaving the small strip of land an island thus creating access to the water on all sides. The waters surrounding Cape Cod can be some of the most diverse and rich waters one may ever see, teaming with an abundance of life.
As a result of the glacial activity, the Cape is peppered with kettle ponds. Most of these freshwater bodies are filled with Perch, Bluegill, Smallmouth & Largemouth Bass. Many are even stock seasonally with Rainbow and even Brook Trout. They provide a great opportunity for some family fun, a little kayak fishing or to finally try your hand with a fly rod. In the winter, they tend to freeze over and offer up some exciting ice fishing.
Fishing the waters of the pristine, protected Cape Cod Bay produces primarily Striped Bass and Bluefish however the ground fishing has been quite productive in recent years. Billingsgate Shoal, which was once home to the Nauset Indians but now lies fathoms below, provides a prime location to fish for Striped Bass with wire line and lead jigs. Schools of ferocious Bluefish can be found peppered thought the Bay. Scup, Sea Bass, Tautog, Flounder and other bottom fish can be found lingering close to submerged structures. Many honey holes are hidden by the phytoplankton rich waters that only the most seasoned local charter Captains are privy to. The Brewster Flats hold all sized Striped Bass and is a great area to sight cast! Live bait as well as flies or swimming baits such as the SP Minnow work well in this area.
Cape Cod Canal sees ripping tides that lunker Striped bass love to hold up in, awaiting baitfish to be washed by in the current. Fishermen line the shores from early spring into late fall in hopes to bring home dinner.
Buzzards Bay produced monster Fluke and Sea Bass this year. Fishing the Tire Reef as well as Bishops and Clerks were a fishermen’s favorite. Be sure and read Jack Houghton’s piece on jigging for Sea Bass. False Albacore and Bonitas made a great show on the south shore as well!
The white sandy beaches off Chatham, Orleans, all the way up to Provincetown have seen an increase in seals in the last few years. They flip and flounder putting on quite the show for beach going folks. If you are up for the excitement of dodging these critters, try your hand with some chunk bait or live bait at a chance to land a keeper. The past couple of years, schools of Manhaden, or Pogies, are being bushed onto the beach by Striped Bass. When this happens, start throwing any topwater lure to get their attention. One exciting way of fishing when you see these schools breaking the surface is to cast a Snag Hook into the school of bait fish, snagging one and then letting is thrash and attract a big striper. If you see bluefish, turn to the hard baits in your tackle box and cast to the middle of busting schools. Pound for pound, Bluefish offer one of the best fights there are!
The rip fishing as well as the vertical jigging off of Chatham has exploded in the last three or four years! The technique needed to fish these areas is like no other, however once you learn it, you will be hooking up left and right! The A17 with the chartreuse tails and the sandeel, or herring colored Daddy Mac’s were the go to jig of choice to the East, during the late season bite, live eels drifted through the rips at Handkerchief Shoal was particularly effective.
The tuna grounds off of Provincetown, Chatham and Orleans have been productive early spring and late fall for a number of years. Fish from football size up to giant commercial keepers have been taken with a great showing off Stellwagen. The Whale activity out East was outstanding as well.
If you are knowledgeable and lucky enough to have your own boat (or even better, a friend with a boat) be sure to check Goose.com for an up-to-date fishing report as well as the ability to purchase gear on-line and shipped right to your house through out e-commerce site TheMightyFish.com. Come in to the shop to speak to one of Team Goose Pro Staff for hints and tips on what is currently hot. We are stocked with bait, tackle, knowledge, and good stories!
If you would like to be taken out to the fishing grounds by a professional, please check out some of the Goose Hummock’s ENDORSED CHARTER BOATS.