Father’s Day Trip to Martha’s Vineyard

Father’s Day Trip to Martha’s Vineyard

My son organized a Father’s Day camping trip to Martha’s Vineyard. We had a blast although the fishing and the weather were not in our favor.

After being home bound much of this spring with foot injuries, I was pumped to be out and about, especially to be on the island with a fly rod in hand. Yeah we did find a few schoolies mixed in with a lot of hickory shad, but the angling from shore was largely a bust. Drat. Perhaps most of the stripers were offshore feeding on the squid runs. If so, you can be sure the boat guys were hooking up big time.

The weather was a factor too. Cold fronts kept rolling through, driven by north winds that weeded up the beaches. Ugh.  I hate that red mung. And rain showed up at times as well. Never good news on a camping trip, believe me. The picture above should give you some idea of what daytime conditions were like.

We traveled around mightily, hoping to comp upon a good bite. Fished over half-a-dozen different beaches spanning nearly the entire north shore – from Dogbar to Edgartown. Never saw any real action. Hey, sometimes fishing is wishing!

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Been out of Action for Over a Month

Been out of Action for Over a Month

As you may have noticed I’m not doing much posting. Truth is I’ve been out of action for over a month. First off I reinjured my right foot. This injury originally happened twenty year ago. Some kind of problem with the bones in my foot. The orthopedic guy told me to take it easy and hope it didn’t come back. Well, it popped up again. Damn.

Back When I had Two Good Feet!

That got me putting all my weight on my left foot in an effort to protect my right. Made sense? After three weeks of that, I sprained my left ankle! At that point I was pretty much immobile. Spending a lot of time on the couch, my friend, watching fishing videos on YouTube. Yeah things are slowly getting better, but it has been a tough spring for this old guy.

 

 

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Long Island Sound Continues to Decline

Long Island Sound Continues to Decline

Back in March, a report was released concerning the health of Long Island Sound. It was authored by Hannes Baumann, Assistant Professor of Marine Science for the University of Connecticut and Jacob Snyder -a graduate student. The report looked back over decades of scientific data, confirming that Long Island Sound continues to decline.

The report identifies four main areas of concern – steadily rising water temperatures in eastern Long Island Sound, acidification, loss of dissolved oxygen, and a decrease in the abundance and the diversity of marine life. All of them serious issues.

If you have been fishing the Sound for many year – as I have – this is a no big surprise. The Sound’s marine environment has been declining for decades. In good part it is due to the increasing urbanization of the surround land. Which in turn causes coastal eutrophication – an increase in pollutants such as nitrogen, phosphates, and waste water runoff. And there is no doubt the Sound’s problems are now aided by climate change.

Make no mistake my angling friends, the waters around us are changing before our very eyes. Difficult days may lie ahead, as Long Island Sound continues to decline.

 

 

 

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Rescuing a 1987 17′ Aquasport: Part 6

Rescuing a 1987 17′ Aquasport: Part 6

In Part Five, we took out the old deck. This time around we removed the hull liner. This took some really effort, but my son felt he wanted to get down to a bare hull before starting to build back. The first step in this process was to detach the liner from the hull itself. This required removing the rub rail and a large number of screws. Then slowly the liner had to be jacked upwards to free it from the gunnels.

Lifting the Liner on 2x4s

The liner turned out to be very heavy. So lifting it was no cakewalk. Gradually we worked it upwards on 2×4 lumber. Once the liner was high enough to clear the gunnel, with fingers crossed, my son flip it off the hull.  It land with a thud. Done. Portions of the old liner will be reinstalled later on. But the rest will be customized to fit my son’s design.

Liner Removed

For the first time we had a complete uninterrupted view of the bare hull. Something that has not been visible for almost 35 years.  A large amount of foam padding can be seen. This was installed by the factory to level the original deck. The foam will be scraped off and replaced as the project goes forward.  And insides of the hull cleaned and prepped. Now is also the time to start planning how to rewire the boat, and locate a new gas tank, among other things. Onward!

Bare Hull

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Art Drinkwater is an Amazing Angler

Art Drinkwater is an Amazing Angler

I’ve never had the privilege of meeting Art, but he is a friend of my friend Pete. So, I’ve been hearing stories about Art for years.  Art is 96 years old, lives in Florida, fly fishes in both fresh and saltwater, makes his own fly rods, and ties his own flies. Get you some of that!

Amazing Art Drinkwater with a big landlock salmon

Among many other spots, Art is a regular at Grand Lake Streams in Maine, where he fishes the fall run of landlock salmon.  Yes, that is quite a haul from his home in Florida, but there is no stopping Art. It’s a great fishery. While at Grand Lake Streams this fall, Art was with his son-in-law Ron Smith, and widely known outdoor writer Bob Leeman.

In the picture Art is holding a 25″ male landlock salmon, weighing approximately 5 pounds. He caught it on a custom fly tied by his son-in-law. Now the average fall fish here is 16-18″ with a few going 20″ or a crack more. So, this is a rare and wonderful catch, he was immediately released.  Great going Art!

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