Connecticut Fishing Report – November 18, 2021

Western Sound is still in the peak of the fall migration and anglers continue to cash in.

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Connecticut Fishing Report

Heather, from Black Hawk Sport Fishing reported that they are still getting after it and put together another week of solid fall fishing. Mother Nature cooperated more than usual, and they found some great fishing whenever she did! They are still finding some nice piles of big sea bass and scup, while the cod numbers seem to be improving each day. Their combo trips were even better, with limits of tautog on all off them, along with scup and sea bass to top off the coolers. They are still planning on getting out every day that the weather allows, and all trips remain by reservation only, so keep an eye on their website for schedule updates and to book a trip!

Mike Roy of Reel Cast Charters told me that tautog fishing is still going strong, and he has recently seen a nice push of bigger fish. Limits have still been relatively easy when the weather allows, and despite the cooler temperatures, there are still quite a few nice keeper sea bass in the mix. The rivers are loaded with stripers of mixed sizes, as some start to transition to their winter-over spots, while some of the bigger fish are still feasting before they make the long migration.

Captain Chris Elser, of Elser Guide Service, told me that the Western Sound fishing has remained outstanding. He continues to find good numbers of slot class bass, along with more school bass than you know what to do with! The bigger bass are still sticking tight to the abundant bunker schools and can be taken on live baits and large bunker imitator plugs. The bigger fish seem to prefer more subtle surface action right now, so the 10-inch Big Occhis and the Doc have been preferable to your standard topwater popper. Chris has another week or so of saltwater fishing but is looking forward to transitioning into freshwater pike and trout action.

Max, at Fisherman’s World in Norwalk, reports that the Western Sound is still in the peak of the fall migration, and anglers continue to cash in. There are as many striped bass as you’d ever want, with fish blitzing in most of the usual fall locations on and off throughout the day. Big topwater offerings, SP minnows, and Colt Sniper tins have been doing the bulk of the work, but most quality artificial offerings will get the job done. The best action has still been in the usual haunts around the islands, Sherwood, and Penfield Reef; but the fish are starting to spread out and can be found in multiple locations. The diamond jig bite has remained hot around 11B and 28C, with plenty of bass and some big chopper bluefish showing up on the outgoing tide. Tautog fishing has remained consistent, with some quality fish still hanging around the shallow reefs, and some bigger fish transitioning to the deeper wrecks. Freshwater anglers are reporting improved action at the Saugatuck Reservoir, especially for anglers dunking live shiners. Largemouth and smallmouth bass have been extremely active, and the walleye have started to get more cooperative during the morning hours.

Tautog
A nice tautog taken aboard Reel Cast Charters

Rhode Island Fishing Report

It was another tough weather week, but when given the opportunity, things have been good on the fall grounds for The Frances Fleet in Narragansett. Captain Rich is still finding easy full boat limits of sea bass to 5-pounds, scup to 3-pounds, along with a good showing of market cod. They have been mainly focused on the tautog grounds, which have not disappointed! High hook has been managing around 10 solid keepers on most trips and there have been plenty of shorts to keep the rods bent! The season is winding down, but there is still time left whenever the weather allows! They will continue to sail whenever the weather allows, so be sure to check the website for updates and reservations.

Dustin, at RI Kayak Fishing Adventures reports that the tautog action has remained strong, with most of his clients being able to manage multiple keepers, along with some solid black sea bass. The squid fishing has improved quite a bit as well. Most squid anglers who have dedicated a bit of time have managed at least a half-full bucket. On the freshwater side, there is still some great largemouth action, with larger fish showing up at or after dusk on large swimbaits. The cool morning weather and nice flows has also provided some good morning trout fishing in the local stocked ponds and streams. There are still plenty of opportunities to book a great shore or boat trip, so be sure to reach out to Dustin before it’s too late.

Peter Minn Tautog Fishing
Peter Minn with a nice haul of tautog while out with RI Kayak Fishing Adventures.

Dave, at Ocean State Tackle in Providence, told me that anglers that are still getting out there are finding a steady tautog bite, and believe it or not, there are still some tuna around. The tautog have started to transition into slightly deeper water, but there is no shortage of action. Freshwater anglers are still reporting good catches in most of the streams and ponds that have been stocked this season. Dave is officially closed for the season for renovations and to get stocked up for the spring, and he wanted to thank everyone for yet another great season! 

Connor, from Tall Tailz Charters in Newport told me that he took a few days off to unwind after an incredible couple of weeks of fall tautog fishing. He’s kept his ear to the reports though, and told me that there is no shortage of tautog and still plenty of stripers to be had. Anglers are still seeing large schools of topwater feeding stripers along the coast, while the late fall/winter holdover spots are starting to fill in with some better fish. He’ll be back at it this week and they still have some dates available for late November and early December, so be sure to contact Connor to get out while the bite is historically hot!

Rick, at Priority Charters in Point Judith, told me that he was part of the crowd that found some excellent tautog fishing off Newport this week. Limits of tog, along with plenty of big fish are still being taken locally, and the numbers of tautog at Block Island are very strong on the days that the weather allows the trip. The Block Island trips are also producing limits of big sea bass and a healthy number of quality cod, along with some blitzing bass, bluefish, and a few false albacore.

Nick, at Big Bear Hunting and Fishing told me that the beat has rolled on in his neck of the woods. The tautog fishing is red hot for anyone who has gotten out there, and with the recent weather, there has been quite a bit of tautog interest. Freshwater anglers are reporting some big largemouth, especially for those that are switching to live shiners as the water temperatures continue to drop. There are also some big bass that are active enough to hit large artificials around dawn and dusk. Trout anglers are also seeing no lack action with the best catches coming from Silver Spring and Carbuncle.

Connecticut Forecast

The days are getting shorter, but our saltwater fall run isn’t ready to give up just yet. Tautog action remains solid across the board, and we’re starting to see more cod in the mix. Striped bass can be found throughout several different areas, with large schools of pre-migratory fish blitzing out front, along with some better fish starting to transition to their brackish winter holdover areas. Freshwater fishing is at a pre-winter peak, with trout and bass activity remaining steady, and pike and walleye fishing starting to pick up.

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