Located 13 miles off the coast of Rhode Island rests Block Island. This isolated vacation oasis offers world-class fishing as well as breathtaking New England scenery. Just off the coast, lined with rocky bluffs, fishing charters prowl these waters for striped bass, bluefish,tuna, shark, and cod.
Rhode Island, also known as the "Ocean State," is no stranger to fishing charters. While it may be the smallest state, its fishing industry is anything but. And no part of the state knows this better than Block Island.
Located approximately 13 miles off the coast, this isolated island--accessible by ferry and plane--offers world-class fishing charters as well as breathtaking New England scenery.
As the ferry approaches, cutting through the royal blue waters, the rocky bluffs of Block Island emerge.
This quaint town, filled with small inns and family-owned restaurants, offers a perfect place to vacation with the family as well as the perfect place for a fishing adventure.
With pristine fishing waters in all directions, there's no shortage of fish around Block Island. Whether you venture back into the Block Island Sound, out into the Atlantic, or cast a line from the beach, you're bound to feel some nibbles. The most common fish found in the area are bluefish and striped bass, but that's not all.
Also known as stripers, the striped bass is the Rhode Island state fish. It's the largest member of the sea bass family and, therefore, is often called "true" bass. It typically resides in rocky environments--not hard to find in New England--around shores, bays and estuaries.
The bluefish is a popular gamefish known for putting up a good fight--and they taste pretty good too. They're moderately portioned with a broad, forked tail. Coloration is a grayish blue-green dorsally, fading to white on the lower sides and belly. They can range in size from seven-inch "snappers" to around twenty pounds and even as much as forty pounds.
Also known as Summer Flounder, fluke are ocean-dwelling flatfish common to coastal lagoons and estuaries of the Northern Atlantic. While they considered a bottom fish, they can be rapid swimmers over short distances and often feed at mid-level depths, even chasing prey to the surface.
Of course, tuna is a rather broad term--there are over 50 species. However, in the New England waters surrounding Block Island, you'll find giant Bluefin tuna, Yellowfin tuna, Albacore tuna, and Big Eye tuna. While there is certainly an abundance of tuna roaming these waters, beware; these fast-swimming fish will take your line and run with it.
Often called the false Albacore, the Bonito differs from tuna by its compressed body, lack of teeth on the roof of the mouth, and certain differences in coloration. Its meat, however, resembles that of the skipjack tuna and is often marketed as such.
The nearby waters offer some of the most consistent shark fishing north of the Caribbean. Some of the more popular sharks targeted by Block Island fishing charters include Mako sharks, Thresher sharks, and Blue sharks.
Striped Bass and Bluefish: May - October
Fluke: May 1 - December 31
Tautogs: April 15 - December 15
Tuna: July - August
Bonito: August - October
Atlantic Cod: April - November
Shark: June - October
Block Island is known as one of the top spots in the New England region for big-bass fishing. Popular destinations for fishing charters include the Southwest ledge as well as the Block Island North Rip.
Both locations are full of stripers as well as bluefish and flounder. The Southwest ledge produces the most striped bass from June into November. The waters here, which extend back into the Block Island sound, are a bit more protected than that of the North Rip.
The North Rip sand bar extends out from the Block Island shoreline about 1.6 miles until reaching a depth of 65 feet. The spot is known for producing large amounts of bass, bluefish, and fluke. However, as you might assume from the name, this area is subject to powerful currents caused by a funneling effect of water from the Block Island Sound in conjunction with dramatic bottom structure and depth changes.
The Block Island Coast Guard Station
"The Steps" (Mohegan Bluffs)
South West Point
Black Rock Beach
North Point Light House