Capt. Joe Huck on the Helen H noted he’s seen some big improvement in the fluke fishing over the last week or so, due at least in part to the strengthening tides that are finally allowing the boats to cover some ground on the drift. Last Thursday, a full-day private fluke charter with the Cape Cod Salties had a good load of nice keeper fluke not too far from the Helen’s Hyannis slip. Notable catches for that trip were a 9.5-pound doormat for Norm Holcomb of Yarmouthport, and a trio of 6.5’s for Dennis Schock of Harwich, Bill Dagilis of Dennis and Dan Trainor of Orleans, among numerous other slabs in the 4- to 5-pound range. Both the half- and full-day trips have been seeing several fish in the 7- to 9-plus-pound range vying for pool honors. A charter last Wednesday saw a scattering of nicer sea bass to around the 5-pound mark mixed in with the fluke tally. Striped bass fishing bounced back, too, with good numbers of fish showing in the Monomoy Rips and many of the usual haunts in Vineyard Sound. The Helen H Fleet’s six-man charter boats have dates available for striped bass, but it would be wise to get out soon-there’s no telling how long that fishing will remain in high gear.
The Helen attemped a night bluefish run last Thursday night. While the daytime bluefishing is fast-and-furious, it appears top be a daytime-only bite at this point.
Though the H’s fall tuna trips still feel a long way off, early reports from the canyons suggest an absolute lock-and-load troll bite from the Atlantises to Hydrographers over the last two weeks. Several boats had as many as 50 yellowfins in the 40- to 70-pound class in a single day’s trolling; others have found a respectable pick of fish on the night chunking and jigging bite, though the action’s been mostly a wee-hours affair so far, 3 a.m. to first light. Bigeyes have made scattered appearances, but nothing too reliable thus far. It’s certainly not too early to think about booking your rail position for the fall run, which, if the present pattern holds, could see some epic fishing as bait dumps offshore, the breaks become more defined and the tuna put on the big feed before the curtain comes down.