08 May 2014

• Connecticut, Long Island Sound, Housatonic River Saltwater Fishing Report: 07 May 2014

Click on any photo to enlarge

A federal EPA boat was out on the Housatonic River on Wednesday conducting some sort of test.

The trees and bushes along the River are continuing to green-up. Just a reminder of spring as out on the water in was more like November than May.

Despite a long-sleeve undershirt, fishing shirt on top of that, and an insulated vest all covered by a windbreaker, it was truly warm only when the full sun was shining on us.

This was mostly due to the wind, which, despite NOAA's forecast of 5 kts. for the entire day, was blowing up the River strongly enough to produce whitecaps...which means 15-20 kts.

One has to wonder who makes up these wind forecasts for NOAA.

I envision a dreary NOAA office...

In a dimly lit corner at a dusty desk sits a scrawny-butted, pencil-necked nerd wearing suspendered trousers five inches above his waistline and a plaid shirt buttoned up all the way with no tie, hunched posture of someone with chronic low self-esteem, plastic pocket protector in the shirt pocket, and a slight dribble of drool escaping the left corner of his mouth mumbling, "oh boy, it's gonna blow 20-25 kts. out there today but I'm gonna tell 'em it'll be only five kts., giggling as his scrawny index fingers peck away at the computer keyboard.

Of course, in this description I'm being unfair.

I take back the part about the drooling.

But the fish weren't bothered by the wind.

Charlie W. reeled in the biggest fish of the day...

...which turned out to be an almost-but-not-quite-keeper...returned to the River after modeling for some photos.

How the striped bass gets its name.

I got a nice fish too but not as large as Charlie's.

It was really tough trying to fly fish out there. I was using the water-loading casting method combined with "chuck and duck."

To make a water-loaded cast you get the rod and the fly line straight out on the water behind you (no slack) and them make a strong forward cast (the "chuck") using the fly line's friction with the water to put a bend in the rod. Then, as the fly comes whizzing past your ear, comes the "duck" part.

The stripers were not featuring flies this day. A 4" all-white clouser minnow didn't attract any hits. Then, thinking about the river herring getting larger as they spend time in the Housatonic, I put on a bigger fly, the fishing-fly equivalent of a floor mop, and instantly got a fish.

But that was it. Just too miserable with the wind to spend any more time with the fly rod (the torn rotator cuff in the casting arm doesn't help much either).

As we're fishing, the fellows in this boat went past us...about 50 feet away...motoring as you see in the photo.

This wasn't done though malice—they gave us a nice wave of the hands as they went by—but rather through lack of understanding of boating/fishing etiquette.

You do this to a fishing guide in the Florida Keys and you'd be on the receiving end of some choice language.

"It's the eye of the striper

"It's the thrill of the fight

"Rising up to the challenge of our rival

"And the last known survivor

"Stalks his prey in the night

"And he's watching us all with the eye—of the striper."***

Source: ConnecticutSaltwaterFishing.com

***With apologies to the American rock band Survivor.

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