The Beach Times

Utilizing the Facilities at Wilbur Park in South Yarmouth, Massachusetts
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, November 15, 2021


Cape Cod is full of small parks providing great ways to spend a few hours while on vacation. Many of these facilities are slightly off the beaten path, so you won’t have to deal with the same crowds as at the main beaches in the summer.

Wilbur Park is one such example, as this small venue sits just off Highbank Road in South Yarmouth on the shore of the Bass River. There isn’t much to the park, but it can act as a starting point for all kinds of Cape Cod adventures.

Here’s a look at some ways to fill your day while visiting Yarmouth’s Wilbur Park.

Use the Boat Launch

Locals primarily use Wilbur Park for the boat launch, as it’s paved and has a loading dock that streamlines the entire process when boating with friends and family. The launch makes it possible to put a large vessel in the water, and there is on-site trailer parking, too.

Keep in mind, though, that the launch is a fair distance from the Bass River’s mouth, so it isn’t the ideal spot to begin a journey into Nantucket Sound. Another boat ramp at Smugglers Beach provides a more convenient starting point when venturing into the ocean. Of course, if you want to explore the Bass River before hitting the open seas, Wilbur Park is always an option.

However, Wilbur Park is a great spot to begin your journey if you’re looking to do some waterskiing on Follins Pond, which is just north of the boat launch. There’s a ramp right on the pond, too, but if you find that it’s overcrowded, Wilbur Park can have you on your way much faster.

Wilbur Park also marks the beginning of the Bass River’s speed zone, the only area where boats can travel faster than six miles per hour in the river. The rest of the Bass River is a no-wake zone.

As a result, many locals will use this ramp when going for a cruise in the river because they can go a bit faster than in other areas.

No matter your reason for using the boat launch at Wilbur Park, you’ll find it easily accessible from many places in Yarmouth and Dennis while vacationing on Cape Cod.

Go For a Paddle

Wilbur Park is an excellent spot for standup paddleboarding or kayaking, as you can use the dock or the sandy beach as a departure point. It’s important to note that boats travel quickly through this area, and there could be some wake, so you’ll want to keep your wits about you while paddling.

Once you get on the water, though, you’ll immediately notice how peaceful it is, as this section of the Bass River is often very quiet. Paddling north past the bridge is particularly interesting because it takes you to a conservation area featuring a couple of uninhabited islands that are worth a bit of exploration.

If you’ve brought your SUP to the Cape, Wilbur Park provides an excellent opportunity to get it in the water for the day.

Fish From the Dock

The dock at Wilbur Park is generally used for loading and unloading passengers from boats that use the on-site ramp, but you’ll also see locals fishing from it during the summer. That’s because the currents generated by the Highbank Bridge create ideal fishing conditions, so get your line in the water to see if you can snag some sea bass, striped bass, bluefish, or fluke in the area.

Not to worry if the dock is crowded either because there are other places you can fish at Wilbur Park. The area just south of the pier features a sandy spot where you can wade into the water a short distance and cast your line with relative ease. The beach extends around the south end of the park, too, providing plenty of opportunities.

There’s also a rock wall along the river bank where you’ll sometimes see people fishing, but the rocks get slippery, so it’s best to stay in the more traditional and safer spots.

Have a Picnic

Once you’ve had your fill of the water, you can still utilize Wilbur Park’s picnic tables and benches if you want to stick around for a meal.

The picnic tables sit just north of the trailer parking spaces, while the benches are closer to the water.

Both locations provide a peaceful place to enjoy the sights and sounds of the Bass River after taking advantage of the beautiful facilities at Wilbur Park.

Things to Remember

Wilbur Park doesn’t have washrooms, playgrounds, or other facilities, as it’s mostly for launching boats. There’s no lifeguard on duty either, and while families will often let their kids wade into the water, local law prohibits swimming at this location.

Make sure you follow the rules while visiting Wilbur Park from your Cape Cod vacation rental to ensure it stays a safe and happy place for locals and visitors to use for years to come.
 



Boating Fishing Kayaking On Cape Cod Paddleboarding South Yarmouth

High Head Beach: North Truro's Hidden Gem
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Wednesday, April 7, 2021


photo of truro beach

There are well-known beaches all over Cape Cod, and you won't have much trouble locating them from your vacation rental.

Most of these beaches are along major routes and close to various other amenities, and there are even signs directing you to their massive parking lots.

While there's nothing wrong with these beaches, and visiting them is highly recommended, there's something special about a secluded stretch of sand away from the crowds of visitors that flock to the Cape every summer.

High Head Beach in North Truro provides an off-the-beaten-path experience that you won't want to miss when spending time on the Outer Cape.

Here's a look at why High Head Beach is notable, along with some information on getting one of Cape Cod's hidden gems.

Getting to the Beach

Before all else, you'll want to figure out how to reach High Head Beach because it's a bit of a challenge.

First, you'll need to get onto Route 6, which runs the entire length of the Cape. Depending on where you're coming from, this could be a long drive because you'll need to pass through Orleans and head north. You'll then take Route 6 through Wellfleet, Truro, and North Truro on your way to Provincetown.

However, before you enter Provincetown, you'll see a turnoff for High Head Road. This road will take you past East Harbor and Moon Pond before coming to a fork. 

Go left at the fork and continue on the unpaved road until you reach another fork. Head left at the second fork and park along the side of the trail.

It's possible to drive to the beach on the dirt and sand road, but you'll need an Off-Road Permit. You must also have an adequate vehicle and all the necessary safety gear to drive on the shore.

Assuming you didn't prepare to drive on the beach, you'll have to walk the rest of the way to the seashore. The hike isn't overly long but can be a bit challenging because you're walking over dunes. The payoff is worth it, though, because you'll come to a secluded stretch of sand where you can find a spot all to yourself to spend the day.

Doing Some Fishing

One of the most popular activities at High Head Beach is fishing, as the location offers outstanding surfcasting opportunities.

All you have to do is wade into the water a short distance and cast out into the ocean, and you'll have an excellent chance of catching striped bass and bluefish. In fact, these waters offer some of the best striped bass fishing on the entire East Coast.

Before putting your line in the water, make sure you have a Massachusetts Recreational Saltwater Fishing Permit. These permits cost $10 for the year and are available online, by phone, or in-person through an approved vendor.

Relaxing in the Sand

Of course, fishing isn't for everyone, and there's nothing wrong with spending your day at High Head Beach relaxing in the golden sand. After all, you've already hiked to the beach, so you might as well take some time enjoying it.

Once you get to High Head, you can walk in either direction for miles. If you end up wandering south, you'll get to Head of the Meadow Beach pretty quickly. This beach is one of the leading destinations on the Cape Cod National Seashore and gets busy in the summer.

Walking northwest is more isolated because there aren't any official beaches nearby. You might come across some people with ORV permits, but other than that, the beach is usually pretty empty in that direction.

Watching For Wildlife

The wildlife watching opportunities are outstanding at High Head Beach. First, this area is a piping plover nesting area, so you might have the rare chance to see an endangered species on your trek.

Other bird species you might come across include:

  • Common tern
  • King rail
  • Sharp-shinned hawk
  • Bald eagle
  • Vesper sparrow

This area is a paradise for birdwatchers because its secluded atmosphere allows these animals to nest, feed, and explore without worry.

Seals also frequent this section of Cape Cod, primarily because there aren't too many people around to bother them. The sandbars that appear off the coast are a favorite hangout for these marine mammals in low tide.

A Memorable Part of Your Vacation

Your vacation on Cape Cod is sure to become a memorable experience because you'll find something new and exciting to do every day. 

Few other destinations provide the opportunity to hike through dense forest, bike along the ocean, and enjoy five-star dining all on the same trip.

Many days will likely involve visits to the beach, too, and if reaching a destination that most visitors will never see is a priority for you, High Head Beach in North Truro is worth considering. 
 



Beach Birdwatching Fishing North Truro Truro

Cape Cod Fishing Charters
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Monday, July 23, 2018


cape cod fishing

When spending time on Cape Cod, it would be downright criminal if you don't spend at least one day on the ocean. After all, the Cape is nearly surrounded by the Atlantic and, as a result, has some of the best fishing on the entire East Coast. Another aspect of fishing on Cape Cod is its diversity, as there are rivers, lakes, and ponds where you can catch smaller fish, or you can head out on a fishing charter in search of a larger species. Even on the ocean, there are various locations, as you can head into Cape Cod Bay, Nantucket Sound, or the deep Atlantic Ocean. For the sake of this post, we're going to look at ocean fishing charters on Cape Cod, as there are plenty of options depending on where your vacation rental is located and what type of fish you want to catch.

After checking into your vacation rental, have a look at the nearby Cape Cod fishing charter companies to see if you can get out there and catch your next meal yourself.

 

Fishing in Provincetown

In Provincetown, Ginny G is one of the top Cape Cod charter fishing companies around. Captain Dave Gibson has been fishing in the waters off Provincetown for over 35 years and brings a wealth of experience if you're looking to catch codfish, mackerel, tuna, bluefish, or striped bass. Since the waters in Provincetown Harbor are so deep, you won't have to travel far to reach the best fishing areas and can spend more time fishing, rather than boating.
 

Ocean Fishing Excursions in Orleans

Dragonfly Sportfishing operates a 23-foot custom SeaCraft vessel out of Orleans, with the boat leaving from a dock on River Road. The craft then heads out into Little Pleasant Bay before venturing into the Atlantic in search of striped bass, bluefish, bluefin tuna, and black sea bass. Whale watching excursions and family fishing trips are also available through this company, and the boat is captained by Mike Bosley. The company also has launch sites in South Yarmouth and Dennis, should you be staying in those areas.
 

Chatham Fishing Charters

Capeshores Charters leaves from Chatham's Municipal Fish Pier and heads to an area that offers some of the best cod and striped bass fishing in the northeastern United States. The vessel, which is a 24-foot lobster boat, travels north off the coast of Nauset or Coast Guard beach, or to Nantucket Shoals in the south, which are both historically fertile fishing grounds. Other fish common in the area include bluefin tuna and bluefish, so you'll have plenty of opportunities to make a catch.
 

Harwich Charter Fishing

Cape Cod Fishing Charters is captained by Art Brosnan and can take groups of up to six people from Saquatucket Harbor in Harwichport to Nantucket Sound and other coastal waters. The boat's four to eight-hour charters search for bluefish, fluke, sea bass, porgy, striped bass, and squid, while ten-hour trips into deeper water for bluefin tuna fishing are also available. The vessel, the Capt'n & Tonaire, is 35 feet long and one of the fastest on the Cape, so you'll spend more time fishing and less time reaching your destination.

 

Yarmouth Fishing Excursions

Shark Shark Tuna departs from Skippy's Pier 1 on Parker's River in Yarmouth and heads directly into Nantucket Sound. From there, you can choose to fish the sound, or head north to the Stellwagen Bank, Cape Cod Bay or anywhere else in the area. The company usually targets bluefin tuna, sea bass, striped bass, porgy, white marlin, yellowfin tuna, and sharks, so you'll have an excellent selection when choosing what to fish for on your day on the ocean.

 

Hyannis Fishing Charter Boats

The Helen H fishing fleet in Hyannis is one of the largest charter companies on Cape Cod, as the company operates five boats between 30 and 100 feet in length. The largest vessel, the Helen H, can handle multi-day trips, as it has sleeping quarters built right in. There is also a sundeck for those who don't want to fish, but still want to experience life on the ship. Codfish, tuna, fluke, sea bass, haddock, and scup are among the fish you can catch on your trip, or you can head out on a whale watching excursion, as well.

 

Fishing Charters in Barnstable

Cape Cod Family Fishing Charters in Barnstable specializes in family-friendly fishing trips so that you can take your kids without any worry. The company heads out into Cape Cod Bay in search of striped bass, bluefish, and tuna and has two boats: The Escape and the Elizabeth B. All fish that you catch will be cleaned and prepared for you to take back to your vacation rental at the end of your tour.

 

Catch Fish in Falmouth

One of the best-known fishing companies in Falmouth is through Bluefin Charters, which operates a 28-foot lobster boat and can take groups of up to six passengers, although larger groups can be accommodated with a second boat. The company offers bluefish, bonito, albacore, and big striped bass fishing close to shore, or fluke, black sea bass and porgy fishing in the deep sea. Shark fishing is also available on longer trips south of Martha's Vineyard.

 

Your Cape Cod Fishing Charters

As you can see, there are plenty of Cape Cod fishing charters available, depending on what you want to fish for and where you want to go. Rates vary, as well, so have a look around to find a sport fishing option that works for you.

Remember that all of your fishing gear is provided with every fishing charter, so you won’t have to worry about packing it from home. Read the website of the fishing charter company that you choose to see what you’ll need to bring on your journey, as most do not provide food or drink unless you make prior arrangements with the captain.

There is usually a place onboard to store any meals that you bring, and many vessels have cooking facilities. It’s also important to pack extra clothes to prepare for changing weather, as the ocean can be unpredictable at times. No fishing license is required in Massachusetts as long as you don’t sell any fish.

Make the most of your Cape Cod vacation this summer by getting out there and experiencing some of the country’s best fishing. If you’ve never gone deep sea fishing before, this is unquestionably the place to try it for the first time.



Cape Cod Fishing Fishing Fishing Charters

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