Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful women who have loved and cared for us dudes since the beginning of time. We were fortunate up here to have a beautiful day to help show our appreciation for all the moms out there.
Mother's Day is also special for another reason, it usually sets the stage for the beginning of our striped bass season up here on the Merrimac River. I took my Mom and Dad out today to scout around for the seasons first stripers! We went to all the usual jaunts from just out front of the beaches all the way up the river. Not much was going on striper wise, but the bait - sand eels and herring - were abundant and were getting assaulted aerially by birds and by seals from below.
It's still a few days early (My first stripers last season were on May 17th, May 15th in 2013, and May 20th in 2012. The difference between last year and this year is the water temps! Even after a record winter in the snow and cold department, the temperatures are higher now than at this time last year. Out on the beach front I was reading 53 degrees which is prime striper temps and up to 65 degree in the river! The magic number we look for is 50 degrees as it is the optimal signal for striper arrival. To put in perspective, we had mid to high 40 degree temps in June last year. The Cape has had a recent blast of schoolies move through and I'm hearing they are reaching Boston Harbor and points north within the past 2 days. I believe we will start seeing our first batch of fish sometime during the week, with things picking up over the weekend.
We have had a very, very good wind pattern to set up our early season with a sustained blow coming from the south. I believe last years constant North/Northwest spring winds is what led to abnormally slow start to the fishing season for many up and down the coast. I really believe last year was abnormal and things should be back to where it usually is for 2015!
Lastly, for those people who like a nice June Morning charter trip, I still have some PRIME dates open; Particularly, June 6th, June 20th, and June 21st (Fathers Day!). If you are reading this and are interested in a Newburyport fishing charter I would grab these dates by clicking here.
I will be fishing hard in the afternoons this upcoming week to land the first striper of the year! Stay tuned!
Capt. Chris Valaskatgis