It was 3:34am and my phone was, rather unsuccessfully, trying to rouse me. After the cursory five (or sometimes ten) minutes sitting on the edge of the bed, I had gathered myself and my clothes for the long day of fishing ahead. Dry bag, rods, tackle boxes, leaders - all accounted for. As I managed to slurp the last of my coffee, the rest of the crew were repeating the same checklist to themselves. With gear in the truck, we were finally en route to the dock.
With the morning birds beginning to sing, we loaded the boat, ferrying gear from the truck to the dock. 4:30am the boat was ready and so were we, so we blasted out of Cohasset harbor and headed South. When we reached a comfortable cruising speed it was time to dole out breakfast; grocery store bagels, and my sad, sloppily spread, cream cheese. It was a quiet ride until the sun popped up above the horizon and we couldn’t help but verbally admire how beautiful it was.
Our crew, made up of myself, Jack Murphy, Dave Murphy, and Cam MacDonald, grew increasingly excited and impatient to reach our destination. Now 5:45 we were at Race Point off Provincetown, and it was game on. We started the morning by getting all the gear setup, live-bait rods, and some fresh sabiki rigs. Bait was the first order of business, and in a short amount of time we had a livewell filled with a nice range of mackerel.
Previous to this trip I had never personally been to Race Point, thankfully Jack and his dad, Dave, had been many times. It was astounding to see how quickly the water depth dropped off, and no wonder big bass amass here to feed in the rip. We fished two rods while trolling, both medium-light spinning rods with live-lining reels. What our crew also likes to do while trolling is have one guy on the bow blind casting to increase our odds a little, and this time it payed off big.
About an hour into fishing we were getting bit by 29-31” fish with decent regularity, which was a very good start. We were all quietly hoping for those big, Race Point fish, we had all traveled for to show up. In one of our trolling sweeps our guy on the bow, Cam, cast out his bright pink Hogy pro tail in hopes of attracting some attention. While we were all looking at a large DownEast sportfish heading for us, Cam had paused his retrieve to join us in the look of disapproval and confusion at the boats intentions. Well maybe that pause was all it took because a half second later WHAM! something large had just inhaled that pro tail.
This fish was clearly larger than the school fish we had been seeing all morning. Lines reeled in, we attempted to maneuver to get some line back, despite the impending sportfish coming down on us. For the size of fish I’m sure Cam felt the ultra-light spinning setup may have been a bit out-classed, but he fought carefully and patiently. Straight up and down with the line, it was a waiting game to get her to come off the bottom, but when we saw the deep color it was obvious this was an impressive fish.
Lipped and hauled aboard this magnificent fish was a solid 42” with a massive broom-like tail. It was difficult not to cheer when Cam held the fish up, a large fish on an ultra-light spin setup fooled by an artificial lure. This fish ended up being the boats largest of the day and, without question, the most memorable of the day. Another 40” fish broke up the day and again the 31” class fish took our baits for the remainder. It was a worthwhile trip nonetheless. I can’t wait to head back down later in the summer and see what other surprises Race Point has for the Lucky Jacks Fishing crew.
- Jack Loveday