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The Isle of Shoals

Ok, so maybe we do have the smallest seacoast in the 50 states (18 miles long), but don't forget the adage about small packages.  Great Bay, The Mighty Piscataqua, Historic Portsmouth Harbor, and of course the picturesque Isle of Shoals, are a few of the highlights of the New Hampshire Coast. 

We met at the boat (a cherry 24' Aquasport, docked at Witch Cove Marina), but we were unsure of where we were going to go.    My favorite thing to do is to go out to the mouth of Portsmouth Harbor, and if I can see the shoals, I usually go for it.  I had a feeling today they would be waving me in. 

Witch Cove Marina is a little marina hidden  behind Wentworth by the Sea at the end of Berry Brook, on the Portsmouth, Rye Line.  Adjacent to it is B.G's Boathouse.  A great place for some fish if you come in empty-handed. 

Before we left, we spotted a baby sturgeon.   He was a little small, so we left him alone, and decided to go out and pick on someone our own size.  

The tide was low, but the channel out to the mouth of the Harbor was well marked and easy to navigate.  

We turned the corner and wham, we were in the presence of the mega yachts of Wentworth By The Sea.   If you can see above the Yachts, in the background is the historic Wentworth Hotel.  

Buzzing by the Wentworth were plenty of commercial lobstermen coming in from a hard days work. 


After the breakwater in front of the Wentworth, we were in the Atlantic.  On the horizon:   The Isle of Shoals.  The Shoals are 10 miles out from Portsmouth Harbor, of 6 miles off the coast of Rye.  6 miles is a long swim, so some of us were smart enough to wear a life jacket.     The seas were about 2 feet, so the 24' Aquasport made it there easily in less than 20 minutes.  We motored down in Gosport Harbor, between Star, Cedar, and Smuttynose Islands,  and stopped to have a beer.  The beer of choice was Michelob in the 6oz. bottles.  We went with the small beers in case we landed a fish, we could take a picture of it next to the beer and make the fish appear larger.

It was now time to fish.  We headed back to the mouth of the harbor to catch some bait. On the way back we passed a few charters boats, including the Thomas Laighton. 
  At the mouth of the harbor was the  the  Portsmouth Lighthouse.   

After a fierce battle, Tom landed the first catch of the day.  

Dave, excited by Tom's big catch, worked his lines furiously.    In an effort to fatten the bait up, we fed them a few Cheet-O's.    Now it was time to find some Stripers.  We fished hard, but came home empty handed.  We agreed that we probably should have fed the bait Frito's instead of Cheet-O's, and that next time we'd get it right.  It was getting dark so we soaked in the beautiful sunset and headed to B.G.'s to eat some fish.