The stripers are back!
Last week, Kevin took the big boat out of winter storage and prepped the motor for the new season. When he was done, he took it down to Prince Cove to put in for a trial run. I didn’t even realize he’d left until the phone rang and I saw his cell number on the caller ID.
“I’m at Prince Cove,” he said, “and the MirroCraft Boys are here.”
The MirroCraft Boys aren’t boys at all. They’re full-grown men, and we see them all the time in their aluminum skiff, out fishing for stripers in Prince Cove. They catch a lot of fish. If the MirroCraft Boys are out, the stripers are in.
“Meet me at the dock,” Kevin said.
I pulled on a couple of extra layers and was out the door inside two minutes.
When I got to the dock, Kevin had the rods rigged and the boat running. We were just about to pull out when a familiar truck pulled into the parking lot. It was our friend Bob, with his Carolina Skiff in tow. He had the same idea we did.
“Leave the boat,” I told him. “Come with us.”
Prince Cove is a long, narrow, winding inlet about a mile long. One offshoot of it leads to the Marstons Mills River, a herring run. The cove and the river are popular fish hangouts, particularly in the spring.
We were only a couple hundred yards from the dock when we started trolling. Bob swears by a fly at the very beginning of the season, and he had a fly rod with a green hairy thing at the end. I had a white rubber lure, and Kevin had the ever-popular pink Sluggo.
Bob got a hit in the first thirty seconds, and reeled in the very first fish of the season. In the hour and a half we were out, we pulled in six or seven fish among us. Everyone caught something.
Unfortunately, they were all small. The biggest was 19 inches, and would have needed another nine to be a keeper. But that was okay. The fish are here, and the season has begun. As Bob put it, “the skunk is off.”