A Look Back at New England Fly Fishing in 2013

new england brook trout

In 2013 I was fortunate to have some great days on the water — including one of my best ever. But all of this was marred by persistent bad news about the continued decline of striped bass (more on that later). What follows is a short summary of some key trends, trips, and events from 2013.


Margaree River: Salmon Fishing on Cape Breton

Margaree Salmon group

This is the Margaree: a beautiful river, with tremendous character. But unlike other salmon rivers, where the water is private and, as a consequence, often eye-wateringly expensive, the Margaree is accessible – at least in price. Getting there is another matter. Situated in a heart of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, trip is an epic one; 12 hours from Boston, according to Google maps. And that’s without pitstops.


Bowing to the King: Tarpon Fishing in Boca Grande

Tarpon fly fishing Boca Grande

We had been chasing tarpon — a giant fish constructed of silver dollar scales, dark eyes the size of plums, and a mouth that could swallow a basketball — in the warm, blue waters off Boca Grande. The pass at Boca is renowned tarpon water, and the coast nearly so: it’s here that Americans, who can’t be bothered (or afford) to fly south to South America or elsewhere, go to chase tarpon. All morning, we had been doing just that: driving with our guide up and down the coast in his 18′ center console boat, searching for schools of tarpon. We blazed past islands and boats and fishy looking sections, stopping here and there, with not a single fish in sight.