Must-Have Striped Bass Tackle
By: Rick Bach
These 5 gear combinations are perfect for different striper fishing scenarios
It was an August evening and I was wading the flats in Brewster, MA with my cousin. Here you can walk out for almost a mile and fish drop-offs, channels and the “edge” of one of the world’s largest tidal flats for striped bass, fluke and bluefish. The trick in Brewster is timing your walk so that you can get as much fishing time in during the lowest part of the tide. You just need to allow yourself enough time to walk back to the beach before the Atlantic returns in force to flood the flat.
It was, of course, right as that flood tide was pouring back in that a striped bass picked up one of my circle-hooked sand eels and headed for New Hampshire. I watched as braided line poured off my spinning reel, the drag singing. The fish never even slowed down. It took every inch of my line no matter how hard I tightened down the drag and when I heard the faint “ping,” I couldn’t tell if it was the last inch of line snapping from the spool of my reel or my heart being popped like a balloon inside my chest.
It was the line, and that’s why I’m still here to tell you that the tackle you bring when you chase striped bass, whether it’s on the flats of Cape Cod, from the beaches of New Jersey, off the coast of rocky Maine or in Delaware Bay, will make the difference between a beautiful grip-n’-grin shot to frame on your wall or a sad beer-soaked story to tell like my tale above. Point being: bring the right gear and you’ll be more successful. Here are my recommendations for each striper situation.
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