Mass Bass Adventure - Update 3

Greetings from the Mass Bass Adventure,

We're writing to you all on the final day of an awesome trip. The past 10 days have been filled with lots of laughs, good company, and numerous fish. It is sad to see the group leave, but we know they are leaving as confident, independent anglers who care for their environment. Not only have all the boys grown in their fishing abilities, but they have also grown as young men. These trips are not easy. The days can be long, and everyone experiences discomfort. The perseverance and resilience shown through this trip leave a smile on our faces. I’m glad to know that the boys will make a positive impact in their communities and will continue to catch fish on their own.

The first day on the flats was our best chance at catching stripers. We woke with the sun and drove in anticipation toward the famous flats of Brewster, Massachusetts. We were greeted by the smell of saltwater and the sight of blue waters. The sun sat high in its chair and gazed down upon us favorably. Without the sun, we had no chance of spotting the elusive creatures we were so feverishly seeking. We arrived just in time to catch low tide. The tide change on the Cape is one of the fastest on the East Coast. It can baffle the mind and trick the senses if you're not careful. The group gazed at the half-mile of beach we would have to traverse to reach the meeting of ocean and land. The flats would prove to be an expected challenge. There were lots of shots at fish, but the wind made it difficult to place the fly in the right spot. The few casts that did land in the ideal zone, were met with refusal headshakes from the picky stripers. The group decided to fold their hand and head in for a lunch of fluffernutters. For those that don’t know, a fluffernutter is a magical concoction comprised of white bread, peanut butter, and marshmallow fluff. I’d highly suggest trying one if you haven’t already. With sore arms and tired eyes, we decided to turn in for the evening and hoped that the next day would bring more luck.

The second day on the flats turned out to be more difficult than the first. The winds had picked up and the sun hid its face. It was impossible to spot fish with the overcast skies. Nevertheless, the boys persevered and gave it their all. After a long day on the flats, we decided to retire at the Ice Cream Café and enjoy a much-deserved treat. That night was met with brats and beans, a Lillard classic. The boys were excited and determined for their last day of fishing on the trip. The day would take place on the North Shore. It would be their last opportunity to catch a striper during the trip.

The fishing gods acted kindly upon the group for the last day. The boys experienced the best day of fishing for the entire year. Everyone caught fish. All the fish were over the slot, a slot fish is 28in-32in, and some fish even measure in the high 40s with one, magical 50" striper. A fish of 10 lifetimes. The boys were happy and satisfied after a day of hard work and deserved payoff. We ended the night with our banquet dinner at Woodman’s, a famous lobster shack in Essex. The boys stuffed their faces with fried fish, crab rolls, and tartar sauce whilst sipping on endless Shirley Temples. 

Mass Bass 2024 will be one for the books! We are so proud of everyone involved. Without the positive attitudes and determination of the boys, these trips wouldn’t work. We wish you all the best going forward. We’re pumped to catch you on the next adventure!


Until next time,

Hunt, Sean, Braden, and the boys

Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions was started in 2010 as a graduate thesis for my Master's Degree in Environmental Conservation Education at NYU. The operating premise was simple - by coupling amazing wilderness fly fishing camps for teens with environmental education and service learning we can help inspire future generations of fly fishing conservationists. We have been growing our unique list of trips and experiences ever since.

When it comes to choosing a summer program for your teen the options are endless. For the teen who loves to fish, be outside, and has a strong sense of adventure we have made the choice easy. We are the leader in teen fly fishing adventures and are dedicated to providing the best backcountry fly fishing experience with opportunities for teens to engage in leadership training, community service, and backcountry camping.


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Will Lillard, Founder/Director/Guide

Contact Us

[email protected]

Lillard Fly Fishing Expeditions
2540 King Road
Pisgah Forest, NC 28768

(828) 577-8204