22 July 2009

7/22 Lower Housatonic River Fishing Report

I picked up Rich N. at his shop, Newtown Bait & Tackle, about 0630 on Wednesday and we motored down Route 25 to I-95 to the Marina in Stratford. It had been cloudy, and foggy in patches up in the hills of Woodbury and Newtown, but as we crossed the I-95 bridge over Bridgeport Harbor we could see that the sun was trying to break through the clouds.

This was not the preferred condition as at this time of year, especially the way the bite has been going for the past week or so [not well]; overcast would have been our preference. Bright sun doesn't encourage the gamefish to stay on the flats in the shallow waters that we fish.

This displayed Capt. Skip's irreversible rules of weather forecasting:

Bad weather arrives earlier than forecast...and good weather arrives later than forecast. EXCEPT when you don't want the good weather to arrive, in which case it arrives earlier than forecast.

We started up Shoo-Fly 3 and headed toward the mouth of the River. Stopped at the right-side breakwater for a few casts...had one hit, then nothing.

Farther out in the mouth, I got the first fish, a schoolie striper. Not much of a fish as stripers go, but a very important fish as it extended our string of straight trips without getting skunked to, now, 36.

Fisherfolk familiar with the area can probably tell where we were fishing from the photos.

We continued through the area picking up a bluefish here, a striper there, a bunch of pesky, under-sized fluke, and a few of those really pesky sea robins.

Only thing I can think of to say good about robins is that they're usually lip-hooked [on artificials at least] and thus easy to release.

Rich got the largest blue of the day [photo], about an 8-pounder, which gave him a nice battle on his St. Croix spinning rod and Fin-Nor reel.

I was actually on the phone with Don G. who was checking in to see how we were doing, and to razz Rich about the "fence post" Rich was using for a rod [Don thinks any rod heavier than a toothpick is overkill], when that bluefish hit Rich's jig/swimbait combination. The fish jumped completely out of the water, cleared the water by 2-3 feet, and smashed back into the surface...what a jump!

It's not unusual for bluefish to break the surface during the fight, but they tend more to wallow, tail-walk, and slop around then clear the water like a hurdler...so that was a fun fish.

Rich also got the largest striper of the trip [photo].

In sum, not a lot of fish, no really large fish, and the bite was scattered all over the place despite the strong, incoming tide.

Yet we had a good day, didn't get zotzed by lighting or even rained on, and we caught some fish.

Another great day on the water.


Don’t forget, a saltwater fishing license is now required to fish the marine waters of Connecticut. You can purchase one for $10.00 from your local bait & tackle shop, such as Newtown Bait & Tackle, or at Town/City Hall.

Connecticut Tourism;
Long Island Sound Resource Center;
Housatonic Valley Association;
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