May 6, 2003 - SARS (Stripers Are Returning Slowly). This report is tempered with a bit more optimism than the previous few. We are beginning to receive reliable information from the south and southeast that fresh fish are entering coastal estuaries and river systems. This is typical early season "hit or miss" angling with the full-scale assault only days away. Newport, Rhode Island's first and second beaches, the Narrows River in Naragansett along with the Coles, Lees and Colt State Park are all experiencing modest pushes of fish.

Keep in mind that the tenor of most of the fishing reports we've been receiving is reminiscent of mid-April rather than early May. It is our feeling that fishing should improve dramatically within a week's time as we gradually approach the mythical 50-degree water reading. In general, most anglers seem to be encountering temps in the low to middle 40's. This along with you a general lack of bait has been directly responsible for our sluggish start.

We finally caught wind of a few fish being located in the Bass River in Dennis as well as Red River Beach and Chatham inlet. This past weekend I personally perused these areas toting a claming rake in lieu of a fly rod and witnessed little or no activity. Due to proximity I didn't have the opportunity to interview the few conventional anglers I saw but it didn't look like they were doing much.

Ron Pasternak of Paxton opened up his season this past week at Colt State Park and saw little action during his two efforts. Pete "The Penguin" Gray yaked the Bass River recently and reports of the general absence of bait and linesiders.

Just a reminder that the Central Massachusetts Annual Banquet and Auction will be held on Thursday, May 8th at Leo's Ristotrante, 11 Brackett Court, Worcester. If you have any questions please call us at 508.752.4004.

Good fishing and safe wading,

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