Anglers Eagerly Awaiting Autumn Striper Blitz

by Captain Greg Metcalf

Offshore fishing for tuna and sharks has been fantastic, however, the inshore fishing situation is in transition. There is sure to be a late season striper blitz, but it hasn’t started yet. Anglers are hoping that fishing will break wide open after the effects from Jose have passed. September always produces one last blast of hot striper fishing. It is definitely far too early to hang up you rod and reel.

Scott Logan from New Hampshire caught this beautiful striped bass while fishing aboard the Striper Swiper this summer.


The Kennebunks: Anglers fishing between Cape Porpoise and Parsons Beach had a great week catching mackerel, and striper fishing was very consistent. There are a lot of fish around, and they are relatively cooperative once you find them.


Stripers are being caught along all the beachfronts from Gooch's in Kennebunk to Wells and tight to the rocks and boulders between Saint Ann's and Cape Porpoise. The Kennebunk River has also been producing excellent catches of striped bass from 18 to 40 inches.  One of the local commercial fishermen told me that he was steaming in from an offshore tuna trip this week and observed an angler fishing off the jetty catching one striper after another. If all the bait stays around, fishing should be great for the next few weeks.


Wells, Ogunquit: Brandy from Webhannet River Bait and Tackle told me that fishing over the weekend was on and off. There were a few stripers within Wells Harbor that were between 24 and 28 inches caught by kayak fishermen with tubes and worm rigs.  Most of the best action was by surf fishermen. Several fish over 35 inches were caught on Wells and Moody beaches and off the rocks at Cape Neddick Light (a.k.a., The Nubble). Mackerel was the favored bait by far. Mackerel are being caught around the harbor and the Wells bell buoy.


York: Captain Phil Breton told me has not been having any luck with bluefish but very good luck with stripers. Phil heard that the ground fishing has also been great in Scantum Basin, but unfortunately, anglers cannot possess cod or haddock due to the federal regulations. Ironically, both those fish seem to be quite abundant recently. Striper reports have been upbeat. Many anglers are reporting success catching both small and large bass in York and Portsmouth rivers and along the beaches, especially Long Sands.


Goose Rocks Beach and Biddeford Pool: Captain Steve Brettell reported that the fishing on Goose Rocks has slower over the past week. Fish have moved off the beach and out into the rocks. Cape Porpoise has stayed consistent, with trolling worms being the most productive.


Saco River & Saco Bay: Pete from Saco Bay Tackle reported area anglers are in the midst of the best and final weeks of the fishing season. Striped bass have moved inshore along beachfronts and into rivers as they gorge for their rapidly approaching swim south to Chesapeake Bay and to points along the Virginia coast and the Carolinas.


Bass should become more aggressive as the season wanes. Those fishing with artificial lures will gain an advantage as hungry bass get ready for their exodus south. Late September and October have traditionally been the most productive time of the tuna season.

Photos courtesy of Captain Greg Metcalf.
From June to October, fishing and sight-seeing is offered by Captain Greg Metcalf

along the Kennebunkport coastline aboard the custom 23-foot Striper Swiper.

Captain Greg has more than 30 years of experience sport-fishing in the Northeast.

Call Captain Greg year-round at 401-617-9265, email greg@captaingregmetcalf

or visit