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I caught my first striper in Connecticut many years ago, but it wasn't a trophy. I had been putting off returning to Connecticut because I knew I wanted to do stripers [it is the home of the world record, after all], but the trophy minimum of 45 inches seemed daunting. I have fished for stripers for 15 years and, of the 16 states in which I've fished for them, I had only caught four stripers longer than 45 inches. However, upon discovering Seth Megargle (, I knew I had found my guy. Captain Seth catches more trophy stripers on his boat than all of the other Connecticut guides I researched combined, and without him ever fishing on Sundays too. My family and I love going up north in July to escape the 100-degree Virginia weather, and I made sure to book Seth when we chose Connecticut as our place to go. I was not disappointed.

After a wind postponement, I fished the afternoon with Seth and mate Trevor and the next morning with Seth and mate Carl. Both bites were excellent and produced 26 stripers total. The stripers made me work for my trophy though, and the one I was waiting for did not show up until 3.5 hours into my second trip. But as soon as it hit the jig, both Seth and Carl knew it was the one. After a long and stressful fight, I had finally landed my 45.5-inch trophy!

To give you an idea of how good Seth is, of the 26 stripers I caught, eight were at least 40 inches and two more were over 39. (The minimum for a trophy in neighboring New York and Massachusetts is 40 inches.) Conversely, only six of the stripers I caught with him were in the 28" - 35" slot range, and there were no shorts, meaning that Seth put me on more trophy-caliber fish than he did meat fish. Truly amazing.

Connecticut became my 44th state with at least one trophy. I loved every minute of my trips with Seth, Trevor, and Carl and I cannot wait to go back again.

Update June 2023: My family and I loved Mystic so much that we went back for another visit in June 2023. Luckily for me, this meant another morning of fishing with Seth, whose trophy fish consistency never fails to amaze me. We left Groton at 5:00 and within 3 minutes of getting to the first spot, I had my first striper. Ten minutes later, I had my first trophy of the day, a 45-inch, 34-pound striper. I caught a few more stripers before Seth said that we would switch spots so I would get a chance at a trophy bluefish.

Once again, Seth's spot produced right away, with a 31.5" bluefish that just missed Connecticut's 32-inch bluefish minimum. The hot bite continued with a nice mixed bag of healthy stripers to 40 inches (coincidentally, the trophy minimum in neighboring New York and Massachusetts) and, you guessed it, a trophy bluefish that weighed 12 pounds, 14 ounces at the dock. My second biggest of the seven bluefish I caught went 11 pounds, 11 ounces, five ounces shy of another trophy. Truly unbelievable.

Captain Seth's trophy prowess meant that Connecticut joined fellow New England states Massachusetts and Vermont, as well as Maryland, Virginia, and Wyoming as the only states in which I have caught trophies in at least two species. And the fact that Captain Seth got it done on just a four-hour trip is even more impressive.

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