CUTTYHUNK: Xanadu Of Surf Fishing
If you’ve been there, you know. If not, when you do, you’re going to wish you found it long ago. Cuttyhunk Island, is a place that time forgot, and if we’re lucky, it will never catch up. This place is simply perfect. The coastline is situated with Buzzard’s Bay to the north, and the Vineyard Sound to the south. Cuttyhunk is part of the town of Gosnold, Massachusetts and it anxiously awaits any angler who appreciates the adventure, the sport, and most of all the tranquility.
Fishing for Striped Bass has taken me to many beautiful places throughout the northeast, but I can tell you, nothing
compares to Cuttyhunk Island. The serenity of this place is what makes it special. It is a place made to do a whole lot of nothing- except catching fish and enjoying every minute of it. With a population of less than 50 year-round residents (400 at the peak of summer), Cuttyhunk offers an opportunity for anglers to get off the grid, relax, and get their “fish-on”! The intermittent mobile phone service almost forces visitors to unplug from the grid and connect to nature. If you are looking for nightlife and souvenir shopping, this place is not for you. No bars, no malls, no quaint little shops or even grocery stores, all of which also means no traffic. For the basic necessities, there is a
small general store located on the island. As for transportation to the island, it is by ferry or water taxi- an hour’s ride from New Bedford, MA- home of the USS Massachussets. Both of these services have limited daily departures/arrivals so you need to plan accordingly.
Cuttyhunk Island has always had a rich history of Striped Bass Fishing dating back to the early colonists who made “Cutty” their home after arriving by sea from England. It’s reputation as “Big Bass Territory” really came to the forefront in the 1860’s when powerful industrialists saw an opportunity. Their wealth and political clout allowed them to establish the Cuttyhunk Fishing Club which allowed these people to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life in hopes of catching some very large striped bass.
Notable members included former presidents Teddy Roosevelt and William Howard Taft. The presidents are long gone, and the former Fishing Club has become The Cuttyhunk Fishing Club Bed and Breakfast, but the island still hosts all the simplistic beauty and the striped bass and angler could want.
When planning a fishing trip to the Island, be prepared and come with everything you need- not only for the fishing (there’s no tackle shop) but to for all your other needs as well. As for me, I prefer to stay at the Club, but I can tell you from experience, they only serve breakfast. Most places to stay have a facility to cook meals- I know this to be a fact at the club. Keep in mind this means you need to pack in your own food. Dining options
are VERY limited, especially in the off-season. For fishermen that want to enjoy adult beverages during their stay, Cuttyhunk is BYO- a dry Island, so remember to bring those as well.
Once you start to plan a trip to the Cuttyhunk Fishing Club B&B, you will want to check with the “first lady” of Cuttyhunk- Bonnie Veeder. Bonnie is a sixth-generation islander. She is more than happy to give you a history lesson and share her wealth of information- often about people who did not prepare so well. This is all a part of what makes the CFCB&B, and the island itself, a wonderful experience. You probably gathered that Bonnie runs the Club B&B, and she makes sure to always have a wonderful staff to make you feel at home. When staying at the club, Bonnie will make it a point to meet and greet you at the ferry dock with a big smile. She will even help you get your belongings up to the club.
I have been coming to Cuttyhunk for six years and I have already planned a return for 2018. Why not, the fishing here is truly the experience of a lifetime. When I first read about, and heard stories of the island, I wondered if it would really live up to the hype. Well it has far surpassed anything I could have imagined. I remember the first time I
saw the island from JP’s water taxi. I could see the sprawling landscape, including a beautiful view of the bluffs (a great place to visit while you are on the island). It appears almost as a mirage- too good to be true, a lost city of gold. It is one of those places people have heard about but never really seen or experienced. I recall hitting the water in my wetsuit for the first time- it was like being christened into a whole new world of fishing. The fishing memories I have made from fishing here are worth their weight in 50 lb. stripers. Cuttyhunk is the essence of what striper fishing should be, surrounded by friends and the salty sea as far as the eye can see. Cuttyhunk Island is my Utopia- to say I can’t wait for my trip in 2018 is an understatement. Maybe I will see you there. Live the Passion! Tightlines!
Bernie Hoyt is from Aquebogue, Long Island. He is a NYS Certified Fishing Guide specializing in surfcasting with over 30 years experience fishing the legendary waters of Long Island. He is well known for his informative seminars at saltwater shows up and down the Atlantic seaboard. He offers trips for all ages and skill levels throughout the outer beaches and inlets of Long Island, as well as the Cape Cod Canal, Cuttyhunk, and other Striper locations in the northeast. He is a team member for S&S Bucktails, ODM RODS, and Eposeidon.com as well as being a long time member of the Long Island Beach Buggy Association and the Montauk Surfcasters Association. We are honored to have Bernie join the blogging Team! You can contact Bernie on Facebook through Bernie Bass Surfcasting Services, on Instagram @Bernie_bass and through his website at www.Berniebass.com