Narragansett Bay to host veterans for stripers and bluefish
On Saturday, June 8 disabled veterans, local volunteers, businesses, and civic organizations will gather at the Allen Harbor Marina in North Kingstown for the second annual Narragansett Bay ‘Stars & Stripers’ fishing event. I am proud to say I will be one of the charter captains and guides taking veterans fishing on my charter fishing vessel the Virginia Joan.
Over a dozen disabled veterans and their families from Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing programs in New England will be hosted for a day on the bay by professional guides and local experts; giving them the unique opportunity to pursue the areas abundant striped bass and bluefish. Thanks to many local businesses and civic organizations a very special shore lunch will be provided for all at the Allen Harbor Marina at the conclusion of the day.
For a little more than a decade Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing has focused on healing those who serve. It is through the tremendous contributions of our volunteers and supporters nationwide that last year alone the program served over 8,300 deserving members of our armed services nationally.
Donations of all types are welcome to make the day more memorable for veterans and their families. To make a donation contact Keith Tanner, event coordinator, at email@example.com or 203/521-2457.
Stars & Stripers is an invitation-only community event for disabled veterans participating in Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing programs. The fishing kicks off at 6:30 a.m. Saturday morning June 8 and concludes at 2 p.m. with the special shore lunch at Allen Harbor Marina.
Fluke experts share tips
Last week I attended a RI Saltwater Anglers Association (RISAA) summer flounder (fluke) seminar with four great fluke experts. The experts at the seminar were Kathy and Peter Lewis, RISAA Team Fluke Challenge tournament winners; Capt. Shamus Mara of Big Game Sport Fishing; and Michael Tilelli, the 2017 and 2018 RISAA Angler of the Year.
Here are some highlights:
When do you start fluke fishing? Peter Lewis said, “I start when the Connecticut season opens, this year it was May 4. However, the fish are generally offshore at this time so we fish the Montauk, NY area until the fish get a little closer.” Mid-May is a good time to start fluke fishing, however, we do not real numbers of keeper fluke until June.
At what depth do you find the fish? Kathy Lewis said, “This time of year we find them in shallower water about 30 to 50 feet and as things warm up, in the deeper water 80 to 100 feet.” Capt. Mara agreed and added, “It all relates to bait. Wherever the bait is, that is where the fluke will be.”
What type of bottom do you like for fluke fishing? Michael Tilelli said, “I fish from shore so it is usually a matter of casting as far as I can and then work the lure back to shore. The biggest factor is bait in the water, if I see no bait I generally move.” Capt. Mara said, “I like fishing humps and bumps and line up my drift so I can take advantage of as much structure as possible.” Peter Lewis said, “I like a sandy bottom, ideally that leads to a mussel bed and then falls off to sand. I like to drift from shallow to deep water.”
Where’s the bite?
Freshwater fishing for largemouth bass continued to improve this week as the water warmed. John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, Riverside said, “I sold a ton of shiners this weekend to anglers targeting largemouth and everyone was catching a quantity of fish. Echo Lake in Bristol County was particularly good for anglers.”
Summer flounder (fluke) fishing picked up a bit this week as the water warmed along the costal shore, in the bay and offshore. Capt. Frank Blount of the Frances Fleet said, “The fluke fishing is really starting to pick up. Saturday was picture perfect conditions and fluking was red hot. We had the best day of the year so far with over 60 keepers. We had five fish around eight pounds. Water temperatures have really risen with the warm week.” Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box, Warwick said, “The fluke bite in the middle to upper bay has really not started yet.”
Striped bass fishing continues to get stronger with school striped bass and larger fish. Last week’s 52.25 pound striped bass taken by Ken Landry the East Passage was a great fish. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “We weighted in a 30 pound bass this weekend caught on an umbrella rig in the Bay.” John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, Riverside said, “The striped bass bite was good this week with a 42” fish caught in the upper Providence River and several keepers caught from shore at Colt State Park mixed in with school bass. Anglers are catching as many school bass as they want in the Lavin’s Marina area in Barrington.”
Tautog season closes for June and July during the spawning season.
Dave Monti holds a captain’s master license and a charter fishing license. He is a RISAA board member, a member of the RI Party & Charter Boat Association, the American Saltwater Guides Association and the RI Marine Fisheries Council. Follow Capt. Dave on twitter @CaptDaveMonti. He’ll be tweeting about ‘Where’s the bite’, fishing regulations, national fishing policy, and issues that impact the fish. Forward fishing news and photos to Capt. Dave at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.noflukefishing.com.