Cape Cod Flyfishing . . . the adventure continues

A bad day of fishing beats a great day at work!

So, true to the forecast, the weather has significantly improved.  In fact, we woke up to blue skies and sunshine today, at 4am no less, and quickly dressed and headed for the boat ramp in Chatham, Massachusetts.  Nestled in a little inlet surrounded by multi-million dollar houses, we took off for our next fishing adventure at 6:30am (there was a period in my life when I thought 6:30 only came once a day, and certainly not in the morning!).

After three days of mostly rain drenched fishing and high winds, we were excited about the possibility of real Striped Bass fishing as we headed out for Monomoy Island.  After a half hour we arrived, to find no birds, no baitfish and no stripers.  The guides find the large schools of Stiped Bass that feed on squid and bait fish by searching for flocks of seagulls milling around a spot where the fish are feeding.

No luck.  However, our guide heard about another guide who found fish off the south coast of Nantucket Island, 30 miles away across open water.  So, playing a hunch, we head south at full speed.  An hour and a half later we arrived to find gulls and terns by the hundreds feeding on schools of squid. And the striped bass were just underneath the surface in a feeding frenzy.  Squid were jumping out of the water to avoid the attacks from the schools of Striped Bass. Bass were jumping out of the water as they roared upwards from the bottom to attack the squid.  And I was jumping out of my skin with excitement!

While most fishermen use spinning gear for the big bass, we were using flyrods and the trick is to cast a big “squid-like” fly, hopefully with the wind at your back, let the current take the fly out into the area where the fish are, then strip the line back quickly, imitating a fleeing squid.  Not as easy as it sounds, as for the first half hour I had extra line tangled around my feet, the wind in my face, more line caught on the cleats of the boat, and several of my heavy flies hitting me in the back of the head as I tried to cast forward with enough leverage to get the fly out.  But, with practice and patience, the rhythm started to emerge and I was making solid casts, and hooking some big fish!

We fished 4 solid hours in the tidal rips and must have landed 30 fish each.  And these are not small, between 15 and 24 pounds!  I know you won’t feel sorry for me, but my arm was aching all evening.  And I think I have a permanent grin.

Stay tuned for more fishing from Cape Cod, Massachusetts.  Lots of lessons learned on this trip and hopefully they will be lessons for you as well.

I have laid aside business, and gone a’fishing. -Izaak Walton

Tight Lines . . .

John R Childress

About johnrchildress

John Childress is a pioneer in the field of strategy execution, culture change, executive leadership and organization effectiveness, author of several books and numerous articles on leadership, an effective public speaker and workshop facilitator for Boards and senior executive teams. In 1978 John co-founded The Senn-Delaney Leadership Consulting Group, the first international consulting firm to focus exclusively on culture change, leadership development and senior team alignment. Between 1978 and 2000 he served as its President and CEO and guided the international expansion of the company. His work with senior leadership teams has included companies in crisis (GPU Nuclear – owner of the Three Mile Island Nuclear Plants following the accident), deregulated industries (natural gas pipelines, telecommunications and the breakup of The Bell Telephone Companies), mergers and acquisitions and classic business turnaround scenarios with global organizations from the Fortune 500 and FTSE 250 ranks. He has designed and conducted consulting engagements in the US, UK, Europe, Middle East, Africa, China and Asia. Currently John is an independent advisor to CEO’s, Boards, management teams and organisations on strategy execution, corporate culture, leadership team effectiveness, business performance and executive development. John was born in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and eventually moved to Carmel Highlands, California during most of his business career. John is a Phi Beta Kappa scholar with a BA degree (Magna cum Laude) from the University of California, a Masters Degree from Harvard University and was a PhD candidate at the University of Hawaii before deciding on a career as a business entrepreneur in the mid-70s. In 1968-69 he attended the American University of Beirut and it was there that his interest in cultures, leadership and group dynamics began to take shape. John Childress resides in London and the south of France with his family and is an avid flyfisherman, with recent trips to Alaska, the Amazon River, Tierra del Fuego, and Kamchatka in the far east of Russia. He is a trustee for Young Virtuosi, a foundation to support talented young musicians. You can reach John at or
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1 Response to Cape Cod Flyfishing . . . the adventure continues

  1. Pingback: Destination Flyfishing: The Good News and the . . . | John R Childress . . . Rethinking

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