22 May Saltwater Edge Fishing Report: 5.22.14 Finally…
All along the striper coast fingers have been crossed and folks have been wondering when…The squid and bunker have been here for weeks; but the bigger bass have been slow to arrive. Under their breath everyone fears the day of reckoning for year after year of poor spawns, over harvesting by all constituent groups and most obviously the lack of fortitude from fisheries managers to even tap the brakes in the face of declining catch rates year over year. While we certainly are not out of the woods it was heartening to see bigger bass fill in behind the schoolies of the past few weeks.
All the rivers and coves in the upper bay have been fishing very well and make for great areas to escape the brutal wind we have had for more than a few days this past week. The amount of bunker in the upper bay is the best we have seen in the past few years and now that the bigger bass have arrived things should get interesting around the river mouths. Swim Shads and plus 3 oz Fixed Hook Bucktail with a pork rind are proven producers.
The early season is great time for the long rod wading the rivers in the upper bay.
The worm hatch is gaining momentum across the Ocean State. The popular South County ponds as well as location in East Greenwich, Barrington and Warren have been active. Sometimes bass feeding on cinder worms can be fussy, for the fly guy it’s important to slow down your retrieve and go with a lighter tippet of around ten pound test. Also if the hatch is heavy try to find a less concentrated scenario in another cove. If you are stuck with a spin rod at a worm hatch try a casting egg and worm flies or small pink Sluggo’s. Here’s an in depth article from John McMurray at Saltwater Sportsman on worm hatch tactics.
Out front of Newport schools of larger migrating bass that are just showing up along the reefs. 3/4 oz-1 1/2 oz bucktail jigs have been a go to along with Cocahoe Minnows with a 1/2 oz jig head. SP Minnows and Savage Gear Manic Prey Minnows have also been producing. Squid are still calling Newport Harbor home and catches have been impressive.
Switching gears to the bottom fish, the scup and sea bass bite has been steadily improving over the past two weeks. Vertical jigging with Crippled Herrings or high lows rigs tipped with clams has been the ticket. With less than two weeks left in the spring season for tautog it’s time to get out. Green and Asain crabs tipped on the Tidal Tail Jig or on a bottom rig will do the trick around any rock piles or pilings.
There are plenty of options to keep you on the water this upcoming weekend.