Cape Cod Fishing Expeditions 2017 Outfitting Guide

Stellwagen National Marine SanctuaryDuring your Cape Cod Fishing and Cape Cod Fly Fishing charter, you will fish prime locations all over Cape Cod. These are some of the best locations in the world to Fly Fish for Striped Bass and Bluefish from the shore and on the crystal clear flats. The Cape Cod area features seemingly endless sandy beaches with plenty of moving water, points, bowls, sluiceways, tidal rivers and flats to choose from. All of the clear surrounding waters are rich with life.  Stellwagen National Marine Sanctuary is located only 3 miles offshore.

Season and Climate

The season runs from the beginning of May and lasts until the end of November. Early and late and in the season there is the possibility of cold inclement weather. Most of the season is mild and dry with average temps in the 70’s during the day and 60’s at night. There is always a chance for fog and humid conditions.  
 
Travel Planning 
 
Commercial Airlines
Cape Air
 has regular service from Boston's Logan Airport to Hyannis and Provincetown.

Private Aircraft
Click on the following links for Private Pilot Information for the:
Provincetown Municipal Airport
Chatham Municipal Airport
Barnstable Municipal Airport

Ferry Service
There are two ferry options from Boston to Provincetown. Click on the link for more information.
Bay State Cruise Company
Boston Harbor Cruises

Bus Service
Plymouth and Brockton Street Railway Company

Lodging
Outer Reach Resort, North Truro
Provincetown Inn, Provincetown
Adventure Bound Camping Resorts Cape Cod, North Truro
 
License 
MA anglers are now required to have a saltwater fishing license. Every angler needs to get one here http://www.mass.gov/dfwele/dmf/recreationalfishing/rec_permits.htm#permit it will be $10 for resident and non resident anglers. 

The Cape Cod Fishing Expeditions

Each fishing expedition is custom designed to fit your skill level and fishing goals. I will interview you first and ask you how much experience you have, your physical ability, and most importantly your vision of the perfect charter. I will then make a recommendation for your charter. It is important to note that much of the best fishing is done in the late night early morning hours and I will be recommending that you fish during these odd hours. This is for your own good. Charter start times are governed by the tides and they are different every day. Charter locations can change if conditions and local reports warrant. Typically the charter will last around 6 hours. If the fishing is hot and scheduling permits, we will fish longer. The weather has to be extreme to cancel a charter. That decision will be made the day of the charter. Lightning, heavy sustained rain and wind over 40 miles and hour are examples of extreme weather, 25 mile an hour winds and rain showers are not. Wind, waves and cloud cover are great conditions for fishing the beach. There is no food service; however you are welcome to bring your own food if you like. We fish hard on this charter and you will not be thinking about food. Alcohol is discouraged on the charter. 

Flats Fishing Expeditions
On flats fishing charters you will be wading with no cover from the elements for the entire charter You can plan on walking + or – 5 miles in the water. If this sounds like alot walking it is. The fishing will be in super shallow water. You will be sight casting to fish during the day and "sound" casting to fish at night.

Kayak Fishing Expeditions 
Only kayakers with intermediate or better experience are allowed on a kayak expedition.  You must be very comfortable with a sit on top kayak.  Kayaking the flats is generally pretty easy.  Much of the paddling is done with the current and there is not much fishing done from the kayak.  The kayaks are used mainly for transportation.  Kayak fishing in the ocean is for experienced kayakers only.  The water is deep, the current is strong, there are many boats and the fish are big. 
  

Cape Cod Fishing Expeditions Equipment Selection

Fly Fishing Gear

Rods – a 7, 8 or 9 wt fly rod is a good all around rod for this charter. A 5 or 6 wt rod can be used when the fish are running small. 

Reels – fly reels that hold 200 yards of backing are best. Backing is important as there is always a shot a getting a large fish in moving water.

Line – WF floating line is good for the flats. The depth of the water you will be fishing will be from 6 inches to 4 feet. There is an opportunity to fish a drop off at the edge of the flats. For this it would be good to have an extra spool or rod setup with a sinking line. On the beach you can use a floating line for poppers and gurglers and an intermediate to fast sinking tip depending on conditions for subsurface flies.

Leaders – short mono leaders, 5’ to 7’, with a minimum of 12# tippet, I normally use 20# flouro unless the fish are super spooky. Bluefish require haywire twists or heavy mono like a tarpon leader, 50# to 80#.

Flies – The main forage out here is the “sand eel”, the real name is the sand lance. The best pattern is an olive or yellow epoxy head sand eel.  Chartreues, olive, yellow or white deceivers and clousers are money too. When the peanut bunker are thick the bass will not hit the sand eel patterns. They will take any kind of small bunker pattern. Popping bugs and gurglers will work at any given time as well. It is also good to have a variety of shrimp and crab patterns as well.

Accessories – It is good to have a chest pack to hold flies, leaders, extra spool and tools. A stripping basket is highly recommended.

Spin Fishing Gear

Rods – 7’ fast action spinning rods are perfect light tackle choices. 8-9’ fast action spinning rods are perfect plugging and eeling choices. 10' or longer fast action spinning rods are needed for long distance casting when the fish are holding off the beach.

Reel – any spinning reel with a smooth drag will do.

Line – I use 20# PowerPro with a 20# mono leader for just about everything.

Lures
Metal – Charlie Graves Tins, Kasmasters and Hopkins with single hooks and white bucktail. Lure size from 1 to 4 oz.

Swimmers – Yellow and Chicken Scratch Bombers, Yo-zuri Crystal Minnows, Mambo Minnows

Surface – Polish Sand Eels, Gibbs Needle fish, yellow and green. Boones Needlefish, Gags Grabbers(poppers and bluefish bombs), Gibbs Pencil Poppers, white and yellow

Plastics – Sluggos, FinS Fish and big white Mister Twisters.

Leaders – All lures should be attached to the main line via a 20# to 60# mono shock leader and swivel. 16 inch or longer 60# or 80# wire leaders are required for Bluefish.

Fishing Techniques

Fly Fishing – you should be able to double haul and cast at least 60 feet. You should be able to cast in windy conditions. You should be comfortable with casting and managing your line in the dark. You should be prepared for a fish to take you to reel and deep into your backing. If your skill level is not up to those standards I would recommend Private Flycasting Lessons to make the most out of your charter. That being said, do not let those standards scare you away, in fact there are many instances where the fish are very close and cooperative if you are there at the right time. Many novice and first time flyfishers do very well. I am very patient you will be comfortable and have fun no matter what your skill level.

Spin Fishing – Circle hooks are exclusively used for bait fishing. You should be come familiar with the hook setting technique used with a circle hook. There is actually no hook set. If you yank like you are trying to set a j-hook, the hook will come right out and you will miss the fish. You should also be prepared for fish to run after being hooked. Some of the fish will be hooked within 6 feet of the rod tip and they won’t be happy about it. If the fish is large it could possibly run well over a hundred yards. You should be prepared to deal with this. Fishing from the beach sometimes requires long casts. You should practice casting with large rods before your charter.

Clothing and Outer Gear 

Waders – Boot foot breathable waders are the best. Stocking foot waders are ok but there is a possibility of the fine sand filling your wading shoe through the water vents. Most lightweight or inexpensive wading shoe or boot is going to fill up with sand and ruin your day. Make sure that you have a rugged quality wading boot like Simms G3's or Cabelas Guidewear. Neoprene waders are good early and late in the season but generally speaking you should be able to layer up enough under the goretex waders to be comfortable.

Wading Jacket – a good waterproof and breathable wading jacket is a must! A wimpy lightweight rainjacket will only make you sad when it starts raining and you have 5 more hours to fish.

Kayak Clothing - During the summer months I wear neoprene pants and a neoprene top with a splash proof top and bottom and neoprene socks. Early and late in the season heavier neoprene or a drysuit is in order. Fingerless paddle gloves are good to have too.

Undergarments – it is good to wear at least one light thermal layer under your waders because the water is cold and to help wick away moisture. It is good to have a top and bottom fleece layer and hat and fingerless gloves ealry and late in the season. The bottom line is that you should bring enough clothing to be comfortable in any weather condition.

Miscellaneous Accessories

  • Polarized sunglasses 
  • Red lens l.e.d. headlamp 
  • Sunscreen 
  • Insect repellent 
  • Waterproof Camera