New England Saltwater Fishing Show This Week
By CAPT. DAVE MONTI
The New England Saltwater Fishing Show takes place this weekend from Friday, March 11 through Sunday, March 13 at the Rhode Island Convention Center. If you like salt fishing, you are in for a treat. The show is the largest saltwater fishing show of its kind in the Northeast. The show features fishing tackle, rods, reels, lures, electronics, rental guides, boats, motors, accessories, apparel and more. More than 300 fishing-related manufacturers are represented at the show.
“You won’t want to miss the show specials offered by the exhibitors and the excellent ‘how to’ seminars offered by some of the best anglers in our region,” said Greg Vespe, executive director of the Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association, sponsor from the living room. “Learn strategies and tactics for targeting the species we all love to catch, eat or release…striped bass, summer flounder, tautog and a host of others.”
The New England Saltwater Fishing Show will be held at the Rhode Island Convention Center on Friday, March 11, from noon to 8 p.m.; Saturday, March 12, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, March 12, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Children under 12 will be admitted free and March 13 is Family Day with all women admitted free.
The show begins with a special launch event on Friday, March 11 at 11:30 a.m. next to the box office on the second floor. The symbolic sounding of ships’ horns will take place with Janet Coit, Deputy Administrator of NOAA; Terrance Gray, director of RI’s Department of Environmental Management; Greg Vespe, Executive Director and Dawn Filliatreault Wood, Board Chair, RI Saltwater Anglers Association, with other association and government leaders.
Participants in the launch ceremony will sound the ships horns, one long blast and three short blasts, symbolic of a ship leaving its dock. After the ceremony, participants will take a brief tour of the show.
Learn to cast with a spinning rod and reel
Learning to cast a spinning rod and reel takes practice. The more you do it, the better you get. But knowing the basics can go a long way.
Captain Ken Cooper, a fellow fishing writer and active member of the Rhode Island Saltwater Anglers Association, enjoys taking his grandchildren fishing. And, when it came time for them to transition from bottom scup fishing to casting lures for stripers and blues, he wanted to help them become proficient casters.
Captain Cooper developed a seven-step methodology for throwing a spin tackle that was easy for them to master and produced great throws in a relatively short amount of time. He was training on a quiet beach and counting out loud with every step. Here are the steps he suggested:
1. Grasp the rod with your index finger in front of the reel seat. Position the rod slightly away from your body, not tight against your body.
2. Make sure the lure overhangs the tip of the rod approximately two feet and the bail is properly positioned in vertical alignment.
3. Open the bail with your free hand,
4. Grasp the line with your index finger or rod hand.
5. With your free hand, grasp the rod near the end of the rod handle. Now look behind you to make sure there are no people or obstacles you could possibly come into contact with.
6. Bring the rod over your shoulder and flick it forward in one quick, continuous motion, back and then immediately forward, with a snap of your wrist, releasing the line of your index finger when the rod is at roughly at the 10 o’clock position on its forward motion. The power comes from pulling down and fast with the hand gripping the butt of the rod and not pushing forward with the hand gripping the rod at the reel seat.
7. Remove your free hand from the butt of the rod, use it to close the shackle, then begin winding.
Captain Ken said: “Over the years, as my grandchildren’s friends or other novice children and adults have come fishing with me, I’ve found that it’s often even better to start with just a rod, no reel and mostly focus. on the rod and hand movements described in count 6. Once this is mastered, we add the reel and begin the full seven-count workout.
Captain Ken said, “The key to success seems to be breaking the cast down into their parts and counting each step together and out loud until a smooth rhythm develops.”
Where’s the bite?
Fresh water. “We are in a low period. Before the trout season ended last week, customers were caching trout. We weighed a three pound fish. But now things are very slow. Some anglers target largemouth bass, but that’s about it,” said Neil Hayes of Quaker Lane Bait & Tackle, North Kingstown. John Littlefield of Archie’s Bait & Tackle, Riverside, said: ‘The Willet Avenue pond was producing for some of our young angles who were fishing there over the school holidays last week but things have slowed down. Some customers who buy minnows fish in northern Massachusetts, where some ponds still have safe ice.
Cod. Party boats fishing cod south of Cape Cod and off Rhode Island, weather permitting, include the Frances Fleet at www.francesfleet.com, the Seven B’s at www.sevenbs.com, and the Island Current at www.islandcurrent.com.
Dave Monti holds a captain’s license and a charter fishing licence. He sits on various boards and commissions and has an advisory practice focused on clean oceans, habitat preservation, conservation, renewable energy, and fisheries issues and clients. Send fishing news and photos to [email protected] or visit www.noflukefishing.com.