The right lenses: By Capt. Tim Egenrieder - Originally published July 2013, Coastal Angler of Boston
I have several friends that have $100,000+ boats, several
$1000 reels and titanium pliers in a custom leather holster - that wear $15
sunglasses. I don’t know about
you, but my eyes are far more important to me than a glorified hook
Whether you are looking to sight-cast to trout in a small
stream, stripers on the flats or trying to find a school of pogies in the
harbor - The right polarized sunglasses will make the difference between a
great day and tired eyes with a lot less fish.
What is Polarization?:
Sunlight is both refracted and reflected (polarized) when it
hits water. Refraction is the
bending of light into water. This
is why fish both appear smaller and higher in the water column than they actually
are. Reflection of light (glare)
is the mirror like effect that makes seeing into water difficult. Polarized lenses block this reflected
light with a special polymer film that has crystals electrically or
magnetically aligned to block light waves traveling parallel to the viewed
surface. This is why two polarized
lenses rotated perpendicular to each other will block all light.
Polarized sunglasses are an absolute must have tool in any
fishing situation. There are many
considerations for choosing the perfect pair for your intended use.
Sunglass frames should fit snugly on your nose and ears
without pinching or rubbing. Make sure that there is rubber on the nose and
ears to prevent sliding from sweat.
To prevent light from hitting your eyes from overhead, choose a pair
that fits close to your face around the brow area without making contact with
Gray: Great for
bright sun in offshore, clear water situations.
Brown/Copper: My preferred inshore lens color. They work equally well in clear and
stained water. Great for sight
fishing in most light conditions.
Rose: Great for
trout streams, driving, and low light inshore days
for target separation. Perfect for
shooting sports, terrible for your eyes while in bright sun and fishing
Mirrored lenses have a highly reflective coating on the
front, also known as flash coating. These reflective surfaces reduce the amount
of light that comes through the lens. Mirrored lenses help reduce eye fatigue
on a bright day on the water. These lenses are available in several different
colors. I prefer blue-mirrored
lenses offshore and on very bright days.
I wear green-mirrored lenses on 90% of all my fishing trips in Boston
Just as the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage skin,
they can also harm the lens and cornea of the eyes. Ultraviolet radiation is composed of three classes:
Ultraviolet A (UVA) 400 – 315 nm, Ultraviolet B (UVB) 315 – 280 nm, Ultraviolet
C (UVC) 280 – 100 nm. You should
look for lenses that are UV400 (to 400nm) certified. These lenses will block the vast majority of all harmful UV
radiation. Eye fatigue is best
prevented with lenses that block yellow light in the 580 nm wavelength. This is the wavelength of light that
makes you squint and generally hurts your eyes.
The only thing worse than paying $200 for sunglasses is
having to do it again from lack of care.
I keep mine in a rigid case with padding inside when they’re not being
worn. I also wear a lanyard around
my neck that attaches to the temple pieces. This is far from a fashion statement, but I have never
damaged sunglasses in any way by having them dangling from my neck. Always start with clean fresh water and
a microfiber cloth for cleaning.
If necessary, use a small amount of mild detergent soap (as always, Dawn
works great). Do not use windex or
ammonia (high ph) based cleaners
And of course cost:
Sunglasses are a lot like rods and reels. There are cheap versions that work fine
and often better than mid priced models.
The best in consistent clarity, preventing eye fatigue and blocking UV
light are also the most expensive and around $200.
I am now on my 4 year of wearing Costa Del Mar
Fathom 580’s daily. I have never
felt eye fatigue in over 500 days on the water with them. They are the best lenses that I have
ever worn and worth every penny.
See you out there…
June 7th was one of those days in Boston Harbor that was just incredible. Huge schools of all keeper sized stripers brutally tracking down the massive schools of herring and mackerel in Boston Harbor. We ended up with well over 30 keeper Striped Bass all on light tackle. Here is the video that we shot of double doubles.
38" and 17#'s. We thought we had the lead but lost to a 40". Still a nice fish entry in a fly fishing tournament. Congrats on the 2nd place finish in the Thompson Island / Outward Bound Fly Fishing Tournament
Not the best way to hold a fish but this one was destined for the weigh in and fillet table. Congrats on the 3rd place fish - 42" and 23# in the annual BOMA Boston Fishing tournament held in early June each year
The first half of the month has had some real peaks and valleys with the weather but the fishing has been excellent. We have run everything from fly fishing exclusive trips to watching live baits get ambushed by hungry stripers. 3 of our Boston Fishing Charters have boated over 30 stripers each on a 4 hour trip. The time is now to book your trip!
Congrats to Nelson on his 2nd place finish in the 2013 Annual Zobo Flounder Fishing Tournament hosted by Pete Santini of Fishing Finatics in Everett, MA. Thanks Nelson for choosing us to guide you for the tournament and congrats on the cash prize.
Hello All, Boston Harbor was, as usual, excellent for flounder fishing throughout May. We would like to thank all of you that chartered the boat throughout the month for the delicious blackbacks. We hope you enjoyed the meany meals your catch provided. Here are a few pics:
Originally Published in Coastal Angler Boston June 2013: Boston Harbor Blackbacks –
Capt. Tim Egenrieder, AnglerFish Guides
One of my earliest memories
and definitely my earliest saltwater fishing memory is being barely able to
hold a rod and feeling the tap, tap, tap and surprisingly strong fight of a
flounder. With my Dad’s help, I
was able to reel it in and remember staring in awe at this peculiar creature.
The winter flounder,
Pseudopleuronectes americanus of the family Pleuronectidae, is a flatfish that
almost always has its eyes on the right side of its body. They are also known
as Blackbacks and lemon sole.
Winter flounder range from Labrador, Canada to Georgia. Unlike most species, winter flounder
move into shallower water to breed in the winter and then retreat to the deep
in summer. The majority of the
spawn occurs from late February through early May in our waters. Each female produces 500,000 to 1.5
Million eggs annually. These fish
live to be up to 20 years old and grow up to 28” and 8 pounds.
Flounder Capital of the
As I worked the fishing and
boating show circuit this winter, I was consistently asked various forms of the
same question – “How is the flounder fishing in Boston Harbor? I remember coming up there as a kid and
renting a boat in Quincy and catching them by the trash barrel.” Quincy and Hough’s Neck were once
widely marketed and known as “The Flounder Capital of the World.” The days of small boat rentals and
filling a trashcan with fish may be gone, but the flounder fishery is excellent
and getting better every year.
The common shallow water
shoals with easy access to deep-water retreats make Boston Harbor perfect
habitat for the Winter Flounder.
They prefer mud/sand bottoms and love the eel grass habitats that are
found throughout the harbor. May
and June are best months to get out and fish for them.
What to use:
On my flounder charters, I
typically use a light tackle spinning rod and the Santini 2 hook Zobo rig from
Fishing Finatics in Everett. I
adjust the weight so that it will stay just off of vertical to the bottom with
weight ranging from ¾ to 3oz depending on current, drift etc. Flounder will eat nearly anything. Sea worms and clams are always
effective and widely available throughout the region. Buying bait is a lot like buying meat from a grocer. Look for a shop that moves large
quantities for the liveliest and freshest bait.
Anyone can catch a
flounder. They are aggressive and
opportunistic feeders and are not shy about tugging on the end of a line. There may not be a better fish to
introduce young children to the sport of saltwater fishing than flounder. I will never forget those days of my
youth spent fishing with my family.
Lastly, they are
delicious. Fresh crab stuffed
flounder with Old Bay hollandaise sauce may very well be the most delicious
thing you ever eat.
I run flounder charters from
late April through early July and begin flounder / bass combo trips mid
May. I hope to see you aboard this
Originally Published in Coastal Angler Boston August 2012: Atlantic Menhaden – The most important fish in the Atlantic.
By: Capt. Tim Egenrieder
Most of us have been lucky enough to experience it – Whether
in search of it or stumbled upon the telltale “flip” on a nice calm summer’s
day. A noticeable school of pogies
has made their presence known.
They may just be actively feeding or they’re could be giant bluefish and
huge striped bass hounding them.
The Atlantic Menhaden (Brevoortia tyrannus) is a member of the Family Clupeidae that consists
of all the herrings, shads, sardines and other menhaden. Their range is from the southeastern
coast of Florida to Nova Scotia.
It is one of the few of its family members to breed in near coastal
waters. Adult females produce huge
numbers of eggs from 30,000 to over 1/3 of a million per spawn. The eggs hatch within a few days and
drift into fertile estuaries where they will spend the first year of their
life. Juvenile (peanut bunker) and
adult menhaden are omnivorous filter feeders that swim open-mouthed often in
tightly packed schools where they feed on phytoplankton, plankton and
Atlantic Menhaden are easily distinguished with a large
Humerel spot just back of the gill plate and several smaller spots behind. They have large scales over a bright
silverfish white belly with a yellow tinted back and fins.
The Atlantic Menhaden has developed many nicknames over
time, several of which allude to their historical and regional significance. The
word Menhaden’s most common believed derivation is from the Native American
word Munnawhatteaug that roughly translates into “that which enriches,” a
reference to their broad use as fertilizer. The common northern New England use of “Pogy” comes from
Native Americans in Maine that referred to them as Pauhagen or Pookagan. New Yorker’s and surrounding areas
common use of “Bunker” or “Mossbunker” dates back to the days of New
Amsterdam. The Dutch name of
marsbunker is used for horse mackerel, a similar looking fish native to their
home waters. “Bug Fish” or “Bug
Head” is a reference to the parasitic isopod (Cymothoa pregustator) that
resides in the mouth of many pogies.
There has been considerable political and environmental
pressure placed on the Omega Protein Corporation. This one company is believed to harvest several hundred
million individuals of the species each year. They are then baked and ground to make Omega 3 oils,
additives for things such as lipstick and fishmeal. The only state on the East Coast that they are permitted to
operate is Virginia. The problem
is that the vast majority of the breeding stock uses the Chesapeake as its
The ecological importance of this species cannot be
overstated. Their abundance, range, feeding methods and forage provided make
the Atlantic Menhaden arguably the most important fish of the Atlantic
coast. It is estimated that each
pogy can filter 4-6 gallons of water each minute. That math becomes daunting when you consider the size of
schools they swim in over the range they inhabit. Almost every fish in the Atlantic feeds on menhaden at some
point of their lifecycle. They can
clean entire water systems while serving as one of the principal forage for
nearly every fish of the Atlantic seaboard – (they’re pretty good to use as
bait too). It certainly seems like
a fish worth protecting?
|Originally Published June 2012: June Stripers – Primetime for Light Tackle
. – by, Capt. Tim Egenrieder
June is here!
The long processes of prepping the gear and boat, the anticipation
through the long winter all culminate in June with some of the best fishing of
the year. It doesn’t matter if you
fish from shore or boat, June is prime time for the light tackle angler.
The striped bass long migration has brought them to Boston,
and they’re hungry! June is also
the month that the main herring swims - alewife, bluebacks and menhaden (pogies)
have either completed their journeys and are falling back into the harbor or
are just arriving. These factors
combined with 60+ degree water temperatures and all of the increased activity
of other baitfish leads to some of the most spectacular visible feeds of the
season – perfect conditions!
What to look for:
The worst kept secret in coastal fishing is that diving
birds = actively feeding fish. If
they’re going to make it easy for me to find large schools of bass, I always
say, why fight it. These feeds,
when paired with appropriate sized light tackle, can be the most exciting
moments ever spent on the water, at least until someone trolls through it…
There are over 20 different species of gulls, 14 species of
terns, 6 species of shearwaters, 4 species of storm petrels, 2 species of
cormorants and then the gannets around our waters. All of these birds have better eyesight than you, a better
vantage point for viewing and have a more pressing need to catch fish than even
the most crazed angler. If they’re
not very good at it, they don’t last very long.
Observing and understanding the differences between the
above bird species can tell you everything from the size and species of bait
the bass are on, the direction the school of fish is moving and even where the
fish were half an hour ago.
Where to go:
There is no set answer to this question. There are structures that coincide with
strong currents at stages of particular tides that hold fish more frequently,
but it is far from every tide in every weather pattern. You need to trust your sounder and make
note of both schools of fish that you mark and active feeds. If you go to the same place at the same
tide a day or two later, you will often find them. One of the best things that can happen in a day of fishing
is finding a big school of active fish without any birds or other boats on
What to use:
I have long used DAIWA Coastal Series rods and reels for my
light spin tackle. They are the perfect balance of finesse and power for
fishing the harbor for striped bass.
The feel of these rods makes fighting barely year and a half old
schoolie bass enjoyable and I’ve landed 40#+ cows on the very same setup.
My standard rigging is comprised of 30# FINS braid tied via
a 12 wrap Yucatan knot to 30# fluorocarbon which is then tied directly to a 50#
Tactical Anglers fishing clip. 30#
test is more than necessary but loops can be easily picked out of a reel and
the line holds up to the punishment that charter after charter can bring. The Tactical Anglers clips give each
lure more action and make quick changes of lures a breeze.
I always start each charter with the 2 lures that worked
best yesterday and 2 rods rigged with a surface popper and a lure that can get
down deep. One of the 2 lures that
worked best yesterday almost always includes a RonZ or Hogy soft plastic,
It is not at all uncommon to have every cast from every
angler on the boat hook into a striper in the month of June. If you’ve been longing to get on the
water but work, life etc. have been stopping you – this is the time to blow
them off and get out there. I
absolutely love June in Boston Harbor!