Lights out. It's time to night fish

Posted 9/9/20

One-hundred and forty anglers tuned into Greg Vespe’s RI Saltwater Anglers Association seminar last week on ‘Night Fishing on Narragansett Bay’ via Zoom. Vespe said, “I …

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Lights out. It's time to night fish


One-hundred and forty anglers tuned into Greg Vespe’s RI Saltwater Anglers Association seminar last week on ‘Night Fishing on Narragansett Bay’ via Zoom. Vespe said, “I first targeted trophy size striped bass at night, I now include species such as fluke and squid.”

Vespe outlined three approaches, to catch striped bass at night. “I use plugs for shallow water, metals and plastics to target different depths in the water column and bait when fishing deep. From shore I like to use eels and from the boat I often deploy chunks (cut up pieces of Atlantic menhaden).”

After thirteen years of night fishing Greg Vespe said, “May 1st is overwhelmingly the first day I hook up with striped bass in Narragansett Bay. So anytime around this date is a good time to start.”

The presentation was jam packed with screen shots from his fish finder pointing out exactly what he looks for when fishing on the Bay at night. The seminar will be available to RISAA members online for a limited time. Visit Hats off to Greg Vespe for a great seminar.


Where’s the bite?

Striped bass and bluefish.

Angler Jeff McNally of Tiverton said, “Last week while I was out fishing on a charter with Capt. Mike Massa of Little Compton I caught a 49-inch striped bass, my largest ever, when trolling tube & worm at the mouth of the Sakonnet River.” “Striped bass fishing for school bass in the back ponds is very good with a top water bite for larger bass from Pt. Judith Light to Charlestown.” said Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor Marina, South Kingstown. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box, Warwick said, “We have keeper size striped bass being caught in the Bay in places we have not seen them this time of year.  Anglers are catching 28-32-inch fish off Oakland Beach, and on the surface at Beavertail. Bone colored lures seem to be working best for anglers. And, we are seeing large schools of bluefish all over the Bay, both the East and West Passages.” John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, Riverside said, “Customers are catching school striped bass in the bay with the bluefish bite being very good at Kettle Point, Riverside and skipjacks (immature bluefish) being caught in just about every cove.” East End Eddie Doherty, Cape Cod Canal fishing expert and author said, “Bell Road lit up on the west tide Sunday morning with bent rods all around starting at first light. The action continued for an hour producing several slot stripers and some over 40 inches. There was a rumor of a 50 inch, but unconfirmed.”

Bonito and false albacore.

  “The green bonito bite was on this week with some false albacore mixed in.  Most of the action was from Jamestown to the Harbor of Refuge. Probably other places too.” said Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “A few customers hooked up with false albacore when fishing off southern coastal beaches.”

Summer flounder, black sea bass and scup.

  ‘The scup bite is good for customers near the bridges with a strong black sea bass bite off Newport out in front and around d Block Island. Remarkably the fluke bite is still existed at Rocky Point fishing pier in the Bay. Believe that peer is working as a fish attractant with so many people fishing there and all that bait in the water.”  John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle said, “The scup bite is good at Kettle Point and some fluke are still being caught off Newport in 80 feet of water. We had a customer pick up four nine keeper fluke this week end. “Capt. Frank Blount of the Frances Fleet said, “The sea bass limit has gone from 3 to 7 which has been very helpful. Anglers have been with limit on most trips. Some real bombers in the mix with big ones going between 5 and 6 pounds. The fluke fishing has seemed to slow up a bit. The size do the fish has been very good but the numbers have been off.” Elisa Cahill of Snug Harbor said, “Fluke fish has preety much dried up, but anglers are still catching nice balck sea bass around Block Island.” 

Cod fishing

has been good.  “Both the southeast and west corners of Cox Loge are producing cod for anglers with spotty performance inside closer to shore at Shark’s Ledge.”  Anlger Paul John Boutiette on the RI Saltwater Anglers Association blog reports a good cod bite at Shark’s Ledge, “We had a great day fishing at Shark’s Ledge Sunday afternoon. My wife and I took our daughter and her friend fishing.  Sunny with a breeze, 70° F. Seas were a bit choppy and the boat was tippy but five hours of fishing produced four good cod and 4 nice BSB. My daughter was thrilled with her cod catch and my daughter's friend caught her first cod ever, but to make it interesting, her first cod was a twofer, hooking two nice cod on one pull.”

Fresh water fishing

remains strong. Tom Giddings of the Tackle Box said, “The Largemouth bass and pike bite are particularly good at Little Pond behind Vet’s school off West Shore Road.  Most there are practicing catch and release.”  John Littlefield of Archie’s said, “Cranston ponds seem to be producing largemouth and pickerel, however, Echo Lake, Barrington has very low water level and the bite is not good there.”


Dave Monti holds a captain’s master license and a charter fishing license. He is a RISAA board member, a member of the RI Party & Charter Boat Association, the American Saltwater Guides Association and the RI Marine Fisheries Council. Forward fishing news and photos to Capt. Dave at or visit and his blog at .            



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