2019 Cape Cod Canal Cheat Sheet

Cape Cod Canal striped bass

There’s nowhere quite like the Cape Cod Canal. The ripping currents formed by the exchange of water between Cape Cod Bay and Buzzards Bay create a fishing experience unlike anywhere else along the East Coast. Fishermen must be prepared to throw large plugs and heavy jigs to tempt the large stripers riding these currents in pursuit of the huge schools of baitfish that use the Canal as a shortcut. Easy access and great fishing has made the Canal one of the most popular surfcasting destinations on the East Coast, rivaling even Montauk Point. To the newcomer, this man-made waterway can be an intimidating place with its big fish, big tides and big crowds, but we’ve compiled a few articles from our archives to help you along your way. Check back often as we’ll be posting more articles as the season moves on, and before each trip, be sure to consult the Army Corps of Engineers 2019 Cape Cod Canal tide chart that we’ve included a link to on this page.

Getting Started: Canal Etiquette Guide
Foggy morning surfcasting on the Cape Cod Canal
Foggy mornings can provide excellent top water action on the Cape Cod Canal.

Canal Tactics

Stripers use current breaks as resting and feeding points, and there are plenty of them scattered along the Canal shoreline. Any small outcropping will create a current seam. Stripers will sit on the slow-moving side of the seam, waiting for baitfish to move past them. Seams usually reveal themselves at the lower stages of the tide. Fish them with swimming plugs, like a darter or bottle plug, allowing your lure to sweep over the seam and into the slower water where the bass will be lying in wait.
 

There are three primary techniques used by fishermen on Cape Cod Canal stripers:

Jigging

Jigging involves probing the bottom of the canal with bucktails or leadheads and soft-plastic baits. Some fishermen “jig” with Cotton Cordell Pencil Poppers loaded with birdshot.

Reaching bottom in the heavy currents requires the use of jigs as heavy as 5 ounces. Fishermen target areas with drop-offs or structure where stripers lie in ambush.
 

Plugging

Plugging targets the upper part of the water column, seeking stripers that are actively chasing baitfish near the surface. This is very popular at sunrise, when stripers and baitfish are often visible on the surface.

big canal striped bass
Live lining mackerel is an excellent tactic for big bass in the Cape Cod Canal.

Bait Fishing

Bait Fishing is also popular in the Canal. Live eels are commonly fished after dark during slower stages of the tide. Chunking with bunker or mackerel is not as prevalent on the Canal as it once was, but it is no less effective. Fishermen either pin their bait to the bottom with a sinker during the slower stages of the tide, or they allow it to drift with the current when the tide is running.

Canal Tackle

Given the fast currents and large lures, Canal tackle needs to be stout. Spinning reels are most frequently used by Canal anglers and are the best choice for plugging. Spinning reels are also effective for jigging, but a conventional reel will allow you to keep better contact with the bottom.

Jigging Rods

A jigging rod needs to be heavy enough to cast 6-ounce jigs and powerful enough to lift a big bass off the bottom in heavy current. While some fishermen jig the Canal with 11-foot rods, most prefer a 10-foot stick. Reels with a fast retrieve ratio are helpful for retrieving the jigs in a hurry and keeping them above the tackle-eating rocks of the Big Ditch. Jigging the Canal is tough on tackle, so many anglers make a big investment in their jigging setup to ensure it holds up to several seasons of abuse.

Plugging Rods

Long casts can be essential to successful plugging in the Cape Cod Canal, so fishermen look for setups that will cast 2 to 5 ounces a long distance and have enough backbone to pull the bass back against heavy current. An 11-foot rod and a spinning reel with a long-cast spool is the norm among Canal anglers.

Cape Cod Canal bikes

Tide Chart

The most popular time to fish in the Canal is during the “breaking tides,” so named for their tendency to produce fish feeding at the surface. These conditions occur when the current change from west to east happens close to daybreak. Breaking tides last for three to four days and fall close to the full and new moon phases. The extreme tides brought on by these moon phases trap baitfish in the Canal, allowing stripers to make an easy meal of them.

Tide charts

printable Army Corps of Engineers Cape Cod Canal Tide ChartClick here for a Savable Army Corps of Engineers 2019 Cape Cod Canal Tide Calendar

Breaking Tides
May
2
Sunrise: 5:38
Sunset: 19:41
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:34
3
Sunrise: 5:36
Sunset: 19:42
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:14
new moon4
Sunrise: 5:35
Sunset: 19:28
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:51
5
Sunrise: 5:34
Sunset: 19:45
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:28
6
Sunrise: 5:32
Sunset: 19:45
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:05
16
Sunrise: 5:21
Sunset: 19:56
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:53
17
Sunrise: 5:21
Sunset: 19:57
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:45
full moon18
Sunrise: 5:20
Sunset: 19:58
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:34
19
Sunrise: 5:19
Sunset: 19:59
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:21
20
Sunrise: 5:189
Sunset: 20:00
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:06
Jun
1
Sunrise: 5:10
Sunset: 20:10
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:37
2
Sunrise: 5:09
Sunset: 20:11
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:38
new moon3
Sunrise: 5:09
Sunset: 20:12
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:00
4
Sunrise: 5:08
Sunset: 20:12
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:42
5
Sunrise: 5:08
Sunset: 20:13
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:25
15
Sunrise: 5:07
Sunset: 20:18
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:26
16
Sunrise: 5:07
Sunset: 20:19
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:16
full moon17
Sunrise: 5:07
Sunset: 20:19
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:03
18
Sunrise: 5:07
Sunset: 20:19
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:47
19
Sunrise: 5:07
Sunset: 20:20
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:30
Jul
June 30
Sunrise: 5:10
Sunset: 20:21
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:01
1
Sunrise: 5:11
Sunset: 20:20
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:48
new moon2
Sunrise: 5:11
Sunset: 20:20
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:34
3
Sunrise: 5:12
Sunset: 20:20
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:20
4
Sunrise: 5:13
Sunset: 20:20
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:07
14
Sunrise: 5:19
Sunset: 20:16
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:08
15
Sunrise: 5:20
Sunset: 20:15
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:59
full moon16
Sunrise: 5:21
Sunset: 20:14
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:46
17
Sunrise: 5:22
Sunset: 20:14
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:30
18
Sunrise: 5:23
Sunset: 20:13
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:10
29
Sunrise: 5:33
Sunset: 20:03
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:27
30
Sunrise: 5:34
Sunset: 20:02
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:20
new moon31
Sunrise: 5:35
Sunset: 20:01
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:11
Aug 1
Sunrise: 5:36
Sunset: 20:00
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:00
Aug 2
Sunrise: 5:37
Sunset: 19:59
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:49
Aug
13
Sunrise: 5:48
Sunset: 19:45
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:41
14
Sunrise: 5:49
Sunset: 19:44
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:27
full moon15
Sunrise: 5:50
Sunset: 19:42
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:09
16
Sunrise: 5:51
Sunset: 19:41
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:47
17
Sunrise: 5:52
Sunset: 19:39
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:24
28
Sunrise: 6:03
Sunset: 19:22
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:55
29
Sunrise: 6:04
Sunset: 19:21
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:49
new moon30
Sunrise: 6:05
Sunset: 19:19
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:40
31
Sunrise: 6:07
Sunset: 19:17
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:30
Sept 1
Sunrise: 6:08
Sunset: 19:16
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:18
Sept
12
Sunrise: 6:19
Sunset: 18:57
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:23
13
Sunrise: 6:20
Sunset: 18:55
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:44
full moon14
Sunrise: 6:21
Sunset: 18:54
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:21
15
Sunrise: 6:22
Sunset: 18:52
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:56
16
Sunrise: 6:23
Sunset: 18:50
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:30
26
Sunrise: 6:33
Sunset: 18:33
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:32
27
Sunrise: 6:34
Sunset: 18:31
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:28
new moon28
Sunrise: 6:34
Sunset: 18:29
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:20
29
Sunrise: 6:37
Sunset: 18:27
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:09
30
Sunrise: 6:38
Sunset: 18:26
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:57
Oct
11
Sunrise: 6:50
Sunset: 18:07
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:54
12
Sunrise: 6:51
Sunset: 18:06
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:32
full moon13
Sunrise: 6:52
Sunset: 18:04
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:50
14
Sunrise: 6:53
Sunset: 18:02
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:25
15
Sunrise: 6:54
Sunset: 18:01
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 05:00
25
Sunrise: 7:05
Sunset: 17:46
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:10
26
Sunrise: 7:07
Sunset: 17:45
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:07
new moon27
Sunrise: 7:08
Sunset: 17:43
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:59
28
Sunrise: 7:09
Sunset: 17:42
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:49
29
Sunrise: 7:10
Sunset: 17:41
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:37
Nov
10
Sunrise: 6:25
Sunset: 16:26
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:36
11
Sunrise: 6:26
Sunset: 16:25
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:16
full moon12
Sunrise: 6:27
Sunset: 16:24
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:54
13
Sunrise: 6:29
Sunset: 16:23
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:31
14
Sunrise: 6:30
Sunset: 16:23
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:08
24
Sunrise: 6:42
Sunset: 16:15
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 00:45
25
Sunrise: 6:43
Sunset: 16:15
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 01:39
new moon26
Sunrise: 6:44
Sunset: 16:14
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 02:29
27
Sunrise: 6:45
Sunset: 16:14
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 03:18
28
Sunrise: 6:46
Sunset: 16:13
R.R. Bridge AM Low: 04:04

140 thoughts on “2019 Cape Cod Canal Cheat Sheet

    1. john

      Bell rd tidal flats four hours before low tide. F you local A holes SHOW some respect now I’m giving up your hot spots

      1. Alex

        Thanks John for some of your hot spots. Don’t understand why some fisherman are so secretive with there spots like they own the real estate . Any other spots you think I should try just send them my way

  1. Den

    So enlighten us!
    I used to fish when I was younger and now I work my a$$ off to care for my family. I can’t afford the luxury of spending day after day looking for my own spot. I only want to catch my favorite food, Striper, and when I have mine, I’m gone till next year. It isnt easy when you dont make a fortune to take the time to fish enough to educate yourself.
    I and others have a right to be able to enjoy catching my food once or twice a year and you locals should be glad daddy set you up to afford the opportunity to live close by and the time to enjoy fishing the canal.
    Feel free to invite me and my sons down and help us catch a fish or two that we can bring home and eat, you won’t see me for another year. I will be out of your way with a smile and respect for you instead of thinking what spoiled rotten pompous arses you might be.
    orionandthunder2@aol.com anytime, oh, and I pay my taxes in this state as well, or I would probably be able to afford to take a weekend off once in a while and go fishing, so don’t treat me like a foriegner, or a wash a shore.
    Face it, some of you are downright stuck up.

  2. Bob Martini

    Thanks for the tips on the canal. Any suggestions on the upcoming breaking tides Aug. 27-29 just a dad who enjoys fishing with his sons &daughter who doesn’t get enough time to do it. Thanks

  3. Jay

    Russell, glad you were able to get rewarded for making the 40 minute drive from New Bedford! I caught a 42” 25 pounder Monday morning. If you want to see a blitz, you should fish the canal 30 mins before first lite and use topwater. If there are bait fish around, you’ll go back to New Bedford after pounding 20+ of them, with at least one being a keeper.

    Tight lines!

  4. Tourist

    Fisherman go where the fish are, the cape locals are a bunch of stuck up aholes the striper’s blitz all over the canal when the breaking tides are happening you’re not skilled your lucky to live close and thats it. Look for the fish and cast a plug over them its a no brainer if it took you 30 years to figure that out im sorry it took me about 30 minutes. Stop crying if the guy next to you catches the keeper good for him keep casting. Come down to the connecticut river in holyoke for the shad run stripers everywhere ill show you my spot i allready know yours chin up bucko its gonna be ok.

  5. Rick l

    I’m a local fisherman and have been fishing the canal for many years looking for great spots to fish. After doing all the work, why should I tell you where it is? You people don’t understand that you need to give a fisherman on the canal some SPACE. An inexperienced tourist can’t just cozy up next to him and fish away. Lines get tangled and that kind of ruins our day. When you see the locals fish together they coordinate their cast in a way that reduces the chance of tangling. When someone who doesn’t understand how this is done comes into the middle of this coordinated exchange they f..k up the whole works. So when you see some locals fishing THEIR spot, go find you own.

    1. Camper

      What a prick. Hope you get the same hospitality in my back yard. M.P…

    2. John

      You do not own the spot. How about setting up a tank at your backyard with fish in there and no one else would touch it.

    3. Brian Mahoney

      Lighten up Francis… Teaching is the key. This past week showed even the tourist can catch fish as well as the natives.

    4. Johnny hawk

      While I respect your attitude I think selectively secret with your honey spots, I’ll just add my two cents here.
      I’ve spent the past four years learning how to fish plum island and hotspots around the Merrimack river.
      I’m gladly sharing this knowledge with folks in the bait shops or the parking lots and even some of my favorite drinking holes. Fishing is great, And America is great.
      Heck, Ive shared some honey holes with a Cambodian Uber driver who is just learning where to fish.
      Fishing should be added to America’s favorite past times you know the ones apple pie, mom’s cooking, and baseball.

      Why do I do this, As an American and I want to show the world that Americans are here to help. I think this stems from one of the seven army core values, selfless service, that I roll modeled as an Army medic, and continue to roll model in my adult life.

      Don’t forget, It was the Army Corps of Engineers that dug that Canal.

      This fall I plan on scouting the canal, I might throw once or twice, these scouting trips should set me up for catching some big ones in the spring and summer of 2018.

      While live in Lowell, I guess that excludes me as a local to the canal.

      So I’ll offer these to closing thoughts, first My family and I have served the Americas in some form of military fashion or another. My forefathers and I have fought in conflicts since defending the Alamo. We’ve bled, sweated, and buried our brothers while defending our great nation.

      So if I happen to see you on the rocks at the canal I’ll nod my head politely and to be sure not to cross lines with you.

      And if you ever want to learn some of my honey holes up on the Merrimack, or Plum Island just drop me a note I’d be happy to share the knowledge.

      buy it.

      1. Jay palmatier

        I want to start fishing plum island. I’m a capeann native and have been fishing these shorelines for 30+ Years but now I want to explore some new fishing possibilities. Any advice for the plum island and Merrimack area would be greatly appreciated and respectfully used.
        Thank you and fish on

      2. Marc

        Thank you, both for your service and your thoughts. As a local/villager (Monument Beach in Bourne), I LOVE the fish tourists. Fishermen are standing on shore rather than clogging the roads and they provide the much needed revenue my local tackle guy needs to stay afloat.

        So PLEASE, come fish. And if anyone gives you guff, tell them your with me. 😉

      3. Nicholas Rothwell

        Hey Johnny, i would love to know the spots in Merrimack and Plum Island. Taking a 3 day trip with my father next weekend.

    5. Jay

      HAHAHAHA Rick is so damn butt hurt. what a little b*tch, made my night reading you cry like a wittle girl

    6. Dave

      Yes you don’t own the place tourists support your hobbie. Don’t be a jerk. If someone is next to you explain to them. They will respect you and try to do the right thing.

    7. Loki

      Rick, u dont down shit at the canal bitch. First come first serve

    8. BeezeChurger

      “Im a local” Let me stop you right there chief. I dont even live in Mass and guaranteed I have done better at the canal than you. I’ve come to learn that anyone who feels the need to constantly call themsleves a local is a self conscious canal rat who can only catch fish in man made waters loaded with bait and 30+pound striper blitzes that occur every other day. Try the old fashioned way of actually scouting remote shorelines for drop offs and structure and then tell me how you do. Like it or not this is the most well known fishing spot in the country, so it comes as no surprise that it is going to be crowded. I understand that people fishing close to you can be annoying but simply ask them to move down, takes about 2 seconds and doesn’t require a 10 minute rant of how you’re a local and an expert at casting a plug into blitzing fish for 50 years…

  6. Rick l

    Tourism is not our number one industry. We all have our own jobs too and pay some of the highest taxes in the country. We don’t need your support.

    1. John Hughes

      Hmm. That’d explain why the mental health services on the Cape get real busy every October – May, I suppose. All those locals, finally getting rid of the tourists and working their steady jobs in peace…must just drive them crazy. Or maybe it’s because they no longer have tons of out-of-town money coming in — the tips at the local restaurants have all dried up, no one’s paying to have boats hauled or serviced or bottoms cleaned, beach and Island parking revenue is gone like the smell of sunblock — and everyone’s miserable until the money tap gets turned on again. Doesn’t really matter anyhow: you don’t own the sides of the Canal, so you sorta have to suck it up whether you like it or not. (The Canal was mostly built, and is still maintained, by the Army Corp of Engineers, which is paid for by FEDERAL taxes.)

    2. Marc

      Really? My property taxes were ~$2,000 last year. Do you have any idea how crazy low that is? In central MA, that tax bill would more than triple. Tourists are the lifeblood of the Cape. If they go away you better hope we catch a lot of fish, it’s will be all we have to eat while we collect unemployment…

      1. Rob

        Marc likes to give his Hillary Clinton wisdom on a few sites it seems. Stick to your computers bud leave the fishing to people who who actually fish

  7. John

    Very accurate description on how and when to fish the canal,good work onthe water.
    Dont forget to go to bell rd in bourne 3 hours before low tide and fish until slack thats when the fish will be their.
    See you guys out there :))))

    1. John

      Is this June or September? Coming from out of state and need to find the optimal season to come in for a week.

  8. Starky

    It’s a shame that On The Water just blows off fly fishing altogether on this one.
    Yeah thanks.

    1. jw_kain

      Relax bud. Plenty of these spots and tactics will easily produce fish with a fly. The best way to learn is by getting out there.

  9. Budman

    And please, people, there’s 7 or so miles of beautiful access on each side.
    DO NOT go and stand 2 feet next to a guy(s) that were there first. The
    stupidity and ignorance has been astounding the last decade or so. There’s plenty of room for everyone. If you want a particular spot get there first. That goes for the bikers too. If someone is hooked up don’t stop and crowd him/cast over his line/be a complete nuisance.
    Be cognizant of the fact that if it’s not slack tide your plug is not going to come in straight to you. There’s a method to the plugging in a running tide. It’s not difficult to figure out. Then again, maybe it is for some.
    It’s gets worse by the year.

    1. Big Jim

      Thank You!!! Some have forgotten simple etiquette and some, unfortunately, just don’t care.

      1. Latino Bucktail

        Last season as i was fishing the slack tide over at Bells, i turned to switch lures and when i turned back another mass hole had taken my spot. My gear was right where he was standing. He stated i didn’t own that rock. The ignorance i find from cape people is amazing!

      2. Chris C

        U should have politely smiled, then threw his ass in the water! What a jerk!

      3. Doug Knowles

        you should have knocked his teeth out with the butt of your rod

    2. Rico

      It was 4 am and no-one around as far as the eye can see when some douchebag stopped his bike and started fishing 10 feet from me. I asked him what was wrong with the rest of the Canal and he said nothing. I told him enjoy the spot I’ll move down. 1 hour later I rode past him with a keeper and he still had nothing.

      Long story short, there are fish all up and down the canal. Yes I know from experience about deeper holes here and there but come on some respect is always appreciated.

  10. Fitzy

    Alot of great tips and info for attacking stripers on the canal.

  11. Paul Leazott

    Does anyone fish the high tide on the east end I was told this was also a good time to fish YES or NO can someone tell me Thanks Paul

  12. Bob davey

    Simple way to solve problem, when someone fish close to you. Just cast your line over his. Drag line towards you. Pretend you are trying to untangle the line. And be sure to Cut his line (A very honest mistake indeed).

    1. BeezeChurger

      I have an even better idea, Bob. Take my method and don’t be a complete douche and simply ask them to move down a couple of feet. Takes about 2 seconds of your time and will save you from a beating one day because I guarantee I’ll knock out your fat ass out for the entire bike path to witness if you ever do this to me. Like it or not this is the most well known fishing spot in the country, it comes as no suprise that it gets crowded. It’s douchebags like you that think you’re jesus christ because you know how to cast a plug into blitzing fish that turned the canal into the hostile environment it is. A little communication and courtesy goes a long way, I’d be careful of whos line you’re cutting in the future…

  13. Proud Mom

    I see a lot of hostility here toward local fisherman at the Canal. Here is my experience with my 12 year old son. This is our first summer staying on the Cape. My son received his first salt water fishing pole and he and his dad have been trying to figure out the Canal–the tides, the “spots”, and all that good stuff. My son was lucky enough to be at the Canal the day that everyone–and I mean EVERYONE–were pulling out stripers. It was unbelievable! My son caught his first fish–a 27″ striper which he threw back. The local fisherman cheered for him, helped him, let him try their rods, and gave him invaluable advice. They treated him as if he were a son or grandson. So maybe the fisherman are protective of their “spots”, but our experience was that they were good people who encouraged my son and added to his new-found enthusiasm for salt water fishing. I thank them for that!

    1. Anthony

      Of course he threw it back it has to be 28” to keep!!??? The only reason people were nice is because a blind squirrel could have caught fish in the canal this year. Just wait until it’s a normal year and no one is catching fish. Sorry to say but they will walk right in front of your son cut his line and snear at him until he leaves. I’ve seen it happen. There is so much good Striper water on cape cod, while people are fist fighting in the canal I’ll have a whole beach somewhere to myself catching fish after fish in the fly. Hate this rediculius mentality.

      1. Ramon

        who ever cuts my line i will punch their teeth so far down their throat they will have to shove a tooth brush up their ass to brush their teeth

  14. Bob davey

    Psst the only reason they helped. You were probably, a Hottie!!

  15. Dan

    I want to take my son fishing for scup and/or fluke. I think the action will keep him from getting bored. Can someone point me to a location that’s fairly safe for my son? Thank you.

    1. Ed Giordano

      Dan,

      Down by the Maritime Academy offers good fishing opportunities for multiple species and offers relatively safe footing for your young angler.

      ~Ed

  16. David Manzi

    Some of you will know who I am,
    Anyway , please dont fish on top of each other.
    If you know the dance then 70 feet is fine.
    I make my own spots and they move around
    Bassmaster…….

    1. RichS

      Hey Dave, glad to hear you’re still at it. I’ll be up tomorrow early.

  17. Eddie

    Ppl fidhing off the pier at canal need to learn how to reel their jigs up before the current takes them to the beach n tanglrd up 300 ppl no effin respect for guys fishin like u own 200 yards on each side of pier. Get dwn on the rocks like the rest of us if u wanna jig were im fishin or the orher 300 ppls lines ur crossing. BULLLLSHHHHHHIAAAT

  18. Carl Johansen

    Kevin you need to find another picture of what a canal bike looks like. Going back to another time they were always female bikes. That way when you are rolling down the service road and you see breaking fish you can slide of the bike with out getting caught you know where. Also with all of the three wheel sets ups that would also be a picture worth putting up in place of the one you show now

  19. Phil

    At the risk of getting pummeled online, I have a question. I’m thinking about coming from NY in the next couple of days to try the canal for the first time. I know how to fish from the shore (30 years pounding the surf in NY from Brooklyn to Montauk), and proper etiquette in tight quarters. What I don’t know is how these pending offshore storms might affect fishing in the canal. Does it get better, worse or does it become unfishable? Appreciate some advice before I take the drive, spend the time, and bleed out the money.
    Thanks

    1. Jimmy Fee

      If the water gets dirty and weedy it can shut things down for a couple days, and a screaming Northeast can make getting the feel of the lures a challenge, but the days after, once the water cleans out (usually after just a few tides) can be very good.

      1. Phil

        Thanks for your advice. I’m heading out tomorrow.

  20. George

    I’ve lived in Bourne my entire life. By far not rich, work 6 days a week. Fish as often as I can before and after work. We’re not stuck up and we’re not a holes, it’s just that some people don’t know fishing etiquette. You need to leave some space between you and the next fisherman beside you. No matter where your fishing, you don’t cast Over another man’s line. You don’t jump on top of someone to fish the spot there in because they getting fish. There is 7 miles of canal in this Plenty of Fish for everyone. And the big thing that fries my ass, don’t throw your trash everywhere. Every time I go down there I fill up at least half of one of my baskets on my Canal bike with other people’s trash. And it’s also not the locals getting caught by the environmental police with 20 fish in their cars. These are some of the reasons some of the locals to get pissed off . There are the unspoken rules of fishing 101. If you treat the guy beside you like you’d want to be treated everybody gets along fine, enjoy themselves, and catch fish. I don’t know about you but I’m out there to relax ,enjoy myself, AND I WANT THAT DAMN 50 POUNDER ! Just like the next guy. I don’t care if you’re from Buzzards Bay or Boston, a little bit of mutual etiquette and respect goes a long way, and we can all have a great time. Good luck, tight lines.

    1. Doug Knowles

      I dont think anyone means guys like you they mean the people who own vacation houses up there and act like they own the place because they have enough money to buy a house but have no knowledge about the etiquette other people have when they fish there

  21. Reel Raconteur

    Wow! Quite a thread. So I am a native of NYC. It’s where I work and hang me hat. But every spare minute I have is spent exploring fishing spots and fishing. In any given year I fish Montauk, The Ditch, Naragansett Bay, Cape May… Basically from the Potomac up to Boston in the spring, and Boston back down to the Potomac every fall. Yep. I chase ’em. My first trip to the Ditch was two years ago and I quickly met two old local sharpies who explained to me the casting etiquette and rythym used while jigging the bottom on the raging tide. I stood on the Eastern (northern?) Jetty shoulder to shoulder with the locals and simply obeyed the rules. As intimidating as the Ditch was for a first timer the last thing I needed was beef or strife from a Tom Brady loving bicycle gang! Lol… Not always a fish for me, but always a good time at the Canal.

  22. AES

    Hey Fellas,
    My family and I are doing a summer vacation in your beautiful Cape, from MD, whale watching, seal watching, a lot of watching is on the books so far. We do have a boat booked for some bottom fishing, pollack, haddock, hopefully cod. I would really like to do some surf fishing and I tripped across this canal blog. We’re going to arrive at the end of July and it sounds like this maybe early for the canal so do any of you have any thoughts on where my boys and I can sling some hardware? If the canal is hot in August it seems like your beaches would have staging fish? Thanks so much and we practice good fishing etiquette, we fish the Salmon river NY every fall and it’s just good common sense. Thanks again…

    1. Ed Giordano

      The Canal can be hit or miss in late-July/early-August in any given year, but if the past 2 years are any indication of the season ahead, you should be in business. Best bets are eels in the dark around structure and plugs or swim baits at the east end at first light.
      As for the beaches, you should probably put your focus on Cape Cod Bay. By that time of the summer most beaches on the south side of the Cape have died down but the north side, from Sandwich all the way up to Provincetown, tends to hold fish all the way through October.
      Be sure to follow our Cape Cod fishing reports. They’re loaded with good local intel that’ll help you locate productive areas and find fish with your boys.

    2. AES

      I would like to thank all at OTW and the guys at Red Top Sporting Goods for all the support. As I reported six months ago my family and I were planning our vacation for Cape Cod July 21-28 and I’m happy to report it was fantastic! We caught stripers every time we fished the canal. The information provided was on the money! Both the locals and Googans were helpful and respectful as well! Thanks again and your Cape area is beautiful!

  23. Mark Maguire

    Located on LI and thinking about making a trip middle to latter part of May. Has the fishing been good this time of year…thanks.

  24. Canal cruncher

    What people are saying is no one owns a spot but they do own the knowledge of that spot that they acquired over time and that shouldn’t be given up freely or expected to be . Also if you see a guy fishing give him enough space that he doesn’t have to change what he’s doing because of you . There is 14 miles of spots to fish and fish can be caught from any given spot . You may unknowingly end up in someone’s honey hole good for you bad for them hahhaha

  25. Michael

    Perhaps there are solutions to improving canal fishing politeness.
    There are all levels of experience, and there are all types of angler.
    It may be benificial for all to form a group of those who are concerned and find ways to pro actively bring some order to the chaos. I envision electing and empowering a some guys to dedicate time to educate newer anglers as to proper technique and form. There could even be a fund to incentivize the effort or even a locally run guide service for newcomers. Over time it could have a positive impact. I think most people want to do the right thing but get too excited and are unaware of their obligations. There will always be a few nuts in the mix but nothing you can do about that.

  26. Michael

    Perhaps there are solutions to improving canal fishing politeness.
    There are all levels of experience, and there are all types of angler.
    It may be benificial for all to form a group of those who are concerned and find ways to pro actively bring some order to the chaos. I envision electing and empowering a some guys to dedicate time to educate newer anglers as to proper technique and form. There could even be a fund to incentivize the effort or even a locally run guide service for newcomers. Over time it could have a positive impact. I think most people want to do the right thing but get too excited and are unaware of their obligations. There will always be a few nuts in the mix but nothing you can do about that.
    There must be a better way.

  27. frank

    I am looking for a good rod and reel to fish the canal.
    Not looking to spend crazy $$$$

    1. Carl B

      Judging from the comment below, maybe Walmart would be a good place?

  28. Hoggin’

    Another canal cheat sheet… good work fellas, must be a slow day at the office. The place was nothing short of a circus disaster last year with the crowds and sheer slaughter, but yet you guys feel the need to make it easier for the flip flop and shorts crew with Walmart specials. Good work.

    1. BeezeChurger

      Cheat sheet? This is basic information any dimiwt can figure out in a matter of minutes. You must not do too much “hoggin” if you let an article written about the most well known fishing destination in the country bother you like this. Take a hike… clown

  29. Mike Goodwin

    You guys suck, you ruined the Canal . I hope you go out of business

    1. BeezeChurger

      Really? This one article ruined the canal? An article with basic googan level information written about the already most well known fishing spot in the country? Get out of here you illiterate moron

  30. Mike O’Kelley

    Your July Full Moon is marked the 23rd.

    But it’s the 27th.

    Typo?

  31. Hoggin69

    There is no moon phase in July. Canal will be closed in July. Rhode Island shorelines will be open for business.

  32. no Googans

    I live in Bourne I have fished the canal for 50 years. I have never seen more Googans on
    the canal as 2017. If you do not know what the hell you are doing then stay the hell home. Us ahole locals as kids watched learned and asked questions from the old timers and had respect for them. Thats how we learned to fish the canal. Why don’t you Googans watch learn and ask questions before you start casting and pissing us ahole locals off.

    1. Jay Bird

      So who is this googan he doesn’t speak for me the guys are bitter drunk and one of the bigger abuses of giving away fish at Bell Road according to that we were all googans once and everybody’s got to learn anyway they can these days so happy days to the Bell Road Gogan
      PS, that was Murphy’s rock before u got there.

    2. BeezeChurger

      “Us ahole locals” I dont even live in Mass and guaranteed I have done better at the canal than you. I’ve come to learn that anyone who feels the need to constantly call themsleves a local is a self conscious canal rat who can only catch fish in man made waters loaded with bait and 30+pound striper blitzes that occur every other day. Try the old fashioned way of actually scouting shorelines for drop offs and structure and then tell me how you do. Like it or not this is the most well known fishing spot in the country, so it comes as no surprise that it is going to be crowded. I understand that people fishing close to you can be annoying but simply ask them to move down, takes about 2 seconds and doesn’t require a 10 minute rant of how you’re a local and an expert at casting a plug into blitzing fish for 50 years…

  33. ZigMan

    This place sounds like a good place to fish. Is the Belle Road street on the east or west side of the canal? Do I have to pay for parking there? Are there any other places along the canal to fish?

  34. clarkopolo

    Hey. I used to catch rock)bass in canal. After getting a fishing 🐟 mentor, I am happy to say that with respect and a hook I learned to fish!

  35. no Googans

    Hey jay bird it was Walters rock God Bless his Sole thats one of the old timers that i learned from. Who did you learn from the internet? If you can not run with the big boys stay at the dock . YOU GOOGAN.

  36. no Googans

    Hey jailbird thats right i do give fish to old timers that can’t fish anymore. I even filet it for them if they want. what do you do with your fish if you can catch any. you probably run it in your car and hide it and go poach another one. then you probably go home and sell them. And if they want it filleted you probably have to go on the internet to learn how to clean fish. after you go buy some filet knifes. NO GOOGANS.

  37. Cesar

    Hey guys, what size rod and reel do you recommend to fish the canal, Want to buy my father a rod for fathers day.

  38. Doug Mayo

    When I fish isn’t when other people fish, happy to tell people where to go, that said have been out in the middle of the night and seen nobody, and next night go back and somebody tells me it’s their spot, also happy to avoid the hassle. I’ll be back and you won’t be there, fish whenever you can friends.

  39. searex

    wow, that’s why my friend told me to stay away from the canal, I caught fish everywhere in RI & MA , but never attempt the canal because it seem too intimidating with the crowd, and I heard people got physical with each other, I fished else where, we can stand like 5 yards from each other and we would be fine, but I heard the current is strong in CCC so I guess 15 yards would be a better distance to stand and cast. I never try to crowd up other angler, but I want to try the canal this year. if I run into you, i’ll just say hi and keep my distance of 15 yards. or if that’s not enough please let me know. tight line.

  40. Mark c

    I fished the canal a few weeks back and was great full to the guidance from what I assumed were locals. I certainly did not crowd them but they were very helpfull and open with advise. Thanks guys.

  41. Kevin Palmer

    I have seen a lot of vedioes,about cape cod canal stripersfishery,now I need to know ,is September a good month to head up for some striped fishing.How much does it cost for 1 day fishing license.Best place for fishing.thanks k.p.

  42. tom oertel

    How about Pole number map – the ones on line are not good quality and NONE in the Cape Cod canal Tide Charts the museum publishes. thanks

  43. GottaPeeALot

    I’m 5th gen on the Cape. I gave up fishing for a decade after a injury. Just started back up in 2017-18. I’ve never seen the canal so busy!
    Be prepared to lose tons of gear! Ive probably left $2K of gear in the canal during my 55 years on Earth.
    I hear ya about the rudeness of locals. I had a guy yell at me after he casted over my line by Joe’s. (Where Joe’s use to be) Turns out the guy was someone I sold a bike to 2 weeks later. He must of felt like an ass after seeing the building I own and has been in my family since 1872. Yes i bought it from the estate at market price.
    Yes people do need to learn Etiquette. Stay at least 25 feet away from others. Don’t cast while someone is retrieving. Don’t cast if someone has a fish on nearby. Fish will run to the shore.
    Don’t be a MASSHOLE. Taxes are low on the Cape because of tourism folks. When you have %80 of homes only being used 3 months out of the year that means those people aren’t using the tax dollars for services like schools but they pay for them.
    Tourists! Please remember we aren’t pushy on the Cape. We dont live in a city where you have to cut in front of people to get things done. We drive slow because we choose to live a simple life. If your in a hurry stay home. If not some of us do tend to fight back. I have no problem knocking someone on their ass if they bring the city crap near me.
    Have fun and be polite its that simple.

    1. DEBORBA

      Thank you GottaPeeALot…
      Your tips are very helpful, I’m planning my 1st trip to cape canal in few days, I always worry how to keep distance and other things.

      1. Rich V.

        Hey Deb.
        How did you make out?
        I am from ny and want to spend a few days there fishing.
        Any info would help.
        Thanks!
        Rich V.

  44. Paul.

    I’ve been fishing the canal for 15 years now. I always treat people how I want to be treated. Unfortunately, not everyone thinks that way. No one owns the canal. Not locals or tourists. If I get there at 1 am to fish a spot don’t think your going to park your ass 10 ft from me because your just getting there at 5 am. Not going to happen. Nor if I’m bringing in a fish, or even if I’m not are you going to cast over me. I will cut your line! Done it before and I’ll do it again. One word. Etiquette. Proper spacing. I don’t need to hear your friggen breathing your so close. Not speaking of everyone but the canal is an idiot magnet. What needs to stop is the upgrading and poaching. Zero tolerance for that. There’s plenty of room. 14 miles of it. I avoid the weekends there just for this reason. At least ask if you can fish before just marching down. And it’s only getting worse. This is moreso I believe because of social media. I could go on and on but..

    1. Canal Ant

      Totally agree. Culling and poaching is getting rediculous. There wearnt any Stripers around when I was kid and if we keep killing breeders like they are mosquitos we won’t have any left soon. If you want a fish try to keep one 28-32”. It take almost 17 years for a fish to get to breeding size it’s dumb to kill the future before the eggs are even laid.

  45. Paul J

    Where are the E.P.O.’s ? They should be monitoring that place in force. During hunting season I have seen them in large numbers monitoring hunters at well known hunting areas around Southeastern Mass. Why not do it on fishermen at the Canal? This would discourage the idiots and probably thin down the crowds.

    1. TomW

      Was checked for my license yesterday 5/15/19. Epo said they will be patrolling the canal this year like never before! I shook his hand and thanked him. Nothing I love more than someone getting busted for breaking the law

  46. Bill

    I just returned from the canal 2 was ago. Found all the fisherman courteous and helpful save 1. It’s been my experience that there are always 10 % who will make your good experience unpleasant. I’ve fished in many locations and have always found it to be so . Chin up eat it and show them how you fish . Life’s too short enjoy it

  47. Alger Stoneburner

    I would like to thank all at OTW and the guys at Red Top Sporting Goods for all the support. As I reported six months ago my family and I were planning our vacation for Cape Cod July 21-28 and I’m happy to report it was fantastic! We caught stripers every time we fished the canal. The information provided was on the money! Both the locals and Googans were helpful and respectful as well! Thanks again and your Cape area is beautiful!

  48. Mark

    My son and I fished the canal on the cape side all week. We are from western pa and made the 8 1/2 hour trip. For the record, I found the locals to be some of the most courteous and informative co-fishermen I’ve encountered anywhere in the country. I’ve fished from Florida to Maryland, all over the southeast, the Great Lakes and the Rockies. Kudos to you guys for your kindness and willingness to share your beautiful fishery. We caught a lot of fish as a result of your help.

  49. Richard Vieira

    Hello Mark.
    I am from ny on east border of PA.
    Im looking to make the trip to the canal.
    Is there any info you can share with me about locations to stay at and also where to fish and any other advice?
    Please help.
    Thanks Mark!
    Rich V.

  50. Jae

    Wow. what a read. I’ve been to the canal a few times. It gets busy but in no way crowded. You want to see crowded. Take a trip to Pulaski,Ny during salmon/steelhead season. Your literally shoulder to shoulder. Extend an arm out and you’ll pat someone on the back. Thats crowded but they all get along. Just need educate new people at the canal how to cast and when. Instead of adding to the hostility of cutting lines, dragging line, yelling and whatever else to get back at them. Fishing is supposed to be fun. Lets get back to having fun! Fish on!!

      1. Matt

        I dont think the fisherman on the Salmon river are any better. Ive seen ugly fights up there (physical and verbal), tires get slashed, etc…A couple years before I moved to RI a
        two guys (who were also state licensed guides) were charged with assaulting a 60+ guy trying to get access by them…Im originally from the CNY area and my first trip to the Canal was a cake walk compared to getting shoulder room during the Salmon run. That being said, there is alot of similarities with fishing the two.

  51. Not from around here

    I’m visiting from Virginia. I wish to catch one of those monster Cape Cod Canal stripers like you see on the internet videos.

    If there was one piece of advice someone with local experience could give, what would that be?

    Thanks in advance.

  52. Willie

    7 miles and last I checked fish have tails and do swim..lol..I’ve caught fish from East end to West end and points between..get over the spot thing ..cast and shut up ..follow the casting rules if the donkey next to u can’t enlighten them..pretty simple or move along..again 7 mile ×2 sides…not hard to find a spot…tight lines to all u ditch bitches.. lol

  53. Mike

    Once upon a time I joined Cape Cod fishing and surf casting group on Facebook couldn’t even ask a simple question without being attacked with name-calling and intimidation tactics to be completely honest seems like a bunch of stuck-up butthurt egofisherman at the canal… I fished all over the East Coast I have never seen a bigger group of babies in my life…..its pathetic

  54. ChuckG

    Even a newbie can catch a 30 lb fish: no mystery and very little challenge in the Canal. Just a meat fishery

  55. southshoreandy

    CCC is the biggest joke at this point. We need another moratorium.

  56. Stone

    The canal is definitely the place where anyone can catch a nice fish and then think they are a “Sharpie”. I’ve been fishing the canal for 30+ years. And while the last couple years have been some amazing fishing at times. It has also become the biggest SH*T show this side of the Mississippi. No respect, no etiquette. It’s just about to the point I would rather go fish less on some beach than go to the canal when weather doesn’t make for a good boat day.

  57. Bob G.

    I love solitude so I won’t fish the canal but I may show up to photograph all of the antics that go on along it’s shores. In the words of that wise man: “Can’t we all just get along”? It’s sad.

  58. Steve winters

    I’d rather have diarrhea than fish that shit hole. You massholes can shove your ditch up your anal canal.

    1. Masshole

      Pixie. Tell us. How much time have you spent on the canal? Have you invested any time to find your own spots? Or are you one of those people who rely on internet Intel? Do you even own a fishing rod?
      Are you the type of person to blast a picture of a fish on the internet, being more worried about getting that good background which gives away the spot that someone else has invested time and effort to find,
      Just so you can get a few likes and feel important?
      I think that pixie dust is getting to your head.
      Smarten up

  59. Howard Grossman

    i make the trek from new york to fish the canal just enjoy the scenery and the beauty of the canal and the chance of catching stripers also the bike path is awesome a fun way to fish

  60. Marky V

    What a bunch of clowns
    So what if you don’t like the way some other person fishes
    Or if u don’t want to fish there because you are better than all of us

    1. gratefulforaday

      Whoa – reading these comments makes me want to cancel my trip North but I can’t. I don’t have that financial luxury. I’ve dealt with combat fishing in AK where I lived for 17 years and never heard such negativity. We had people from all over the world coming to to fish. Yeah we’d get pissed when tourists from Europe would catch their limit come back and do it again but not get angry. I’ve had people steal my spot while landing a fish, but still showed many visitors good fishing spots if they seemed legit. I just wanted to go to a place where my old man could go Striper fishing. I rented a place In Sandwich thinking it would be quiet and decent fishing. We always go to the Jersey Shore for Stripers and I convinced him to go North and try something new away from it all. He would share tips with any out of towner or newbie in a heart beat. On any body of water.

      We work our asses off. We have one week. One week off to go fishing and enjoy ourselves. Now it seems we won’t be welcome? Or we have to deal with a bunch of grumpy (fill in the blank). If I hear one idiot be an asshole to him you will see this normally very pleasant middle aged Irish woman lose her shit. Thanks for the welcome wagon. Peace ✌️

      1. BeezeChurger

        dont stress it, this coment thread is blown wayyyy out of proportion. Just dont cast right next to someone and you’ll be fine.

  61. Tubesteakeater68

    Good job OTW. Seems like you senseless idiots don’t get it. Let’s make it easier for every retard on the east coast to fish the already overcrowded clown show of the canal. I hope you guys go out of business. Enough is enough

    1. BeeseChurger

      Dude go cry about it. Everyone including my blind deaf and dumb 3 year old cousin knows about the canal its no surprise there is gonna be articles written, this is basic googan information any dimwit can figure out if youre that worried about this article you are a class a googan… clown

  62. Oldschoolrob

    Wah wah wah..locals are not asshole as a local I can can honestly say what the local vs tourist issue is..u guys..not all of u.
    But a lot of u hit the ditch with no etiquette..not knowing how to get in the lineup..crossing lines .not keeping at least a rod length distance..leaving bait boxes line..general trash all over..and let’s not forget the googans that load their coolers with black bass way past their limit and head out..ive seen shorts taken even after us assholes say put it back..we love our fishery..respect it or don’t come..were the ones who fish it..keep it clean..and live here..to the real guys coming please do ur thing meet some locals were easy to spot.for the rest of u get it together take ur limit pick up ur trash stop crowding out the lineup show some respect and we will to

  63. Mr4bl389

    I’ve fished Chatham for ten years grew up fishing Mashpee hoping to get my kids into fishing the canal I have a lot of respect for fishing etiquette and I hope others will towards kids sounds like some angry people out there I understand your time you put in just remember the future generation hope my kids and others get hooked see you guys on the canal..

  64. chase

    Going there for the first time in July. I’m coming from Toronto and am an avid steelheader, so I am familiar with how to share the river current. I need to some tips on gear and what to bring. Do you think I can use my spey casting rod? I have a 14ft 7wt. I plan on fishing with conventional spinning gear as well, but really don’t want to spend a fortune, I may only fish the canal once and try the surf. I’m only there a few days for my daughters hockey tourney. I’ve seen the videos, plugging and jigging looks like my preferred way to fish. What size inexpensive rod and reel should I buy, line? and will buy some big ass rapalas or lures for pike and musky fishing, i guess. And most import, do I just go to Dicks for fishing license or visit a bait and tackle shop, which shop would your recommend? and I will likely be staying somewhere north of the canal, closer to Boston.

  65. BeezeChurger

    Beezechurger coming in hot! Here’s my 2 cents. Yes, the canal can be a difficult spot to fish and does require some skill to consistently catch big fish. I have traveled from RI at 2 am many times and have had some unbelievable fishing at the canal. That being said, the guys that exclusively fish the canal need to lighten the f*ck up. Like it or not this is the most popular saltwater fishing spot in the northeast, maybe even the country so it comes as no surprise that this spot is going to be crowded. I understand that people fishing close to you can be annoying (trust me I hate it too) but simply ask them to move down a couple feet. 90% of the time if you’re not a douche about it they will give you the room you need. I know why this spot has become so damn hostile. The canal rats have realized that they can only catch fish in man made waters that bottleneck bait and 30+ pound striper blitzes every other day so they bitch, moan and take out their frustrations at the first sign of an inconvenience from other fisherman. Try the old fashioned way of scouting remote shorelines for structure and drop offs and then tell me how you do. Canal rats think they’re fishing gods because they know how to cast a plug into blitzing fish. Newsflash, so does everybody else with half a brain lighten up and stop making this place so hostile. Communication and courtesy goes a long way you old salty canal rats

  66. Robbi

    I’d love to fish there, but having a 3 hour drive and reading a lot of these comments makes me worried that it might not be fun or really worth it. Being a disabled veteran makes it even harder. Maybe someone could recommend a charter with a good reputation for catching striper or a private boat for hire that won’t cost an arm and a leg… thanks in advance for the information.

  67. mariano diaz

    if you want to fish and not be disturbed, go to Jupiter the planet. God forbid someone tangles your line! share your knowledge and teach a poor bastard how to do what you love. They want to do it too. If you get bit by the fishing bug, the worse culprit are people that want to monopolize fishing knowledge and exclude new comers.

    1. BeezeChurger

      Spoken like a helpless little rabbit. I get the hostility is annoying but if you want to learn so badly do a little research and don’t rely on people holding your trembling hands and showing you the way you little fruitcake

  68. Walshski

    True that,mostly big barkers with no life but to bitch about what their fish ways are all about,dont take any shit from anybody…fish on

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