08 Oct Surf Fishing Forecast for October by Dennis Zambrotta
Surf Fishing Forecast for October
By October the game fish migration is in full force. The local population of bass and blues that has summered in the Newport area has left and various schools of fish that summered to our north will now swim by our shores giving us shots of action. If bait fish and game fish coincide the results can be fantastic. October is the time of year when daytime fishing can be as good if not better than nighttime action. Look for short stretches of active feeding fish followed by lulls in between migrating schools. These lulls may last a few days or up to a week. October is a great time to have a good grapevine as your local bite may be dead but a few miles down the coast will be epic. Take advantage of fishing opportunities as time is running short. Local October baitfish can be peanut bunker, adult bunker, mullet, bay anchovies, silversides, squid, and sand eels. Because of this variety of bait many different lures or baits may be effective. Bucktails such as Andrus Rip Splitter, Andrus Jetty Casters, and Blue Frog Fixed Hook jigs adorned with Uncle Josh Porkrind or Gotcha Curly Tail Grub trailers are a must carry day or night – white is by far the most effective pattern. Super Strike Darters, Super Strike Casting Swimmers, and Northbar Bottle Darters may all produce when big bait is present. The Northbar Bottle Darters really shine in rough water, big swells, and severe sweep conditions so prevalent when fall Noreasters hit our coast. Various models of needlefish plugs (Super Strike, Gibbs, Choopy) and Cotton Cordell C10 Series Redfins will produce when sand eels are in the wash. Note that the C10 Series (7 inch) Redfin is even more deadly when loaded with 10ccs of water. Color pattern on plugs is purely personal preference and every caster has an opinion, but if you’re not sure here is a good general rule: light or dark patterns for nighttime casting during a dark moon phase and light colored patterns for nighttime casting during a bright moon phase. For daytime fishing I’ve found that lighter, natural, and chrome patterns produce consistently. And don’t overlook topwater fishing during October with Super Strike Little Neck Poppers and Gibbs Pencil Poppers. Don’t forget soft plastics such as Sluggos and the split tailed Fin-S Fish. These baits placed on Owner Bullet Jig Heads, Joe Baggs Bucktails or Point Jude Wobble Head will catch finicky bass that refuse hard plastic or wood offerings; but when the chips are down and the winds are light break out the live eels.
Many local surfcasters begin making special trips to Block Island during October when rates for lodging come down. Surf fishing on Block Island has the potential to be fantastic and access is unimpeded. Looking for a boulder field to call your own? Willing to walk? Block Island may just be the spot for you. Weekends can sometimes be crowded during good weather but weekdays may produce epic striper fishing with no other casters in sight. The definitive guide to Block Island surfcasting is the new book “Surfcasting around the Block” by yours truly. Reading it will give those wishing to take a trip there valuable insight into surfcasting this porkchop shaped island. A basic package of surfcasting lures to use on Block are needlefish plugs, Cotton Cordell Redfins, needlefish plugs, Red Gill Rascal teasers, Super Strike Darters (Zig-Zags), needlefish plugs, eels (live and/or rigged), Hopkins No-Eql 2 ounce tin with white tube, did I mention needlefish plugs? Day in/night out needlefish plugs are the MOST effective plug to use on Block Island. I often refer to Block Island as “Needlefish Island” or the “Needlefish Proving Grounds”. Make sure to have a Gibbs needlefish in the Neon Green back and white belly color pattern often referred to as “Block Island Green”.
Time is running out – you have 6-7 weeks of surf fishing left – take advantage of it!