Fishing Charters

Red Tail is available only for full day offshore fishing trips.  We target tuna primarily, which might be yellowfin, school bluefin, or longfin (albacore) depending upon the time of year.  Sometimes we get very lucky and will find white marlin, blue marlin, and wahoo if the warm waters of the Gulfstream have moved in closer to the island.  Shark fishing can also be arranged if you wish and conditions are suitable.

There are excellent charter boats in Menemsha that do inshore trips for striped bass, bluefish, bonito, false albacore and the other species found near the island. Contact us if you need a recommendation for a charter if that is what you are after.

Red Tail is rigged with the best quality equipment available.  We have the latest Furuno NavNet 3D electronics with a 1000W fishfinder, and a 6kW radar for finding birds. The fishing tackle on board is the finest available:  Shimano Tiagra two speed reels and custom-made standup rods with Aftco hardware.

Of course Red Tail is equipped with the most modern safety and navigation equipment, including an Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB), three VHF radios, a life raft, radar, and dual GPS systems.

Offshore fishing is very dependent upon weather and sea conditions.  We want you to enjoy a great day of fishing but your comfort and safety always comes first. If the seas are too rough or it is very windy -- which happens a fair bit of the time in New England even in summer -- we may have to reschedule or cancel a trip.  The Captain decides and his word is final.


A typical day offshore begins at sunrise with a departure by 6:00am to take advantage of the calm seas in the early morning and catch the morning bite.  In order to find the fish, we may run two hours or more to the south of the island towards the continental shelf.  If the bluefin tuna are in, we may head down Vineyard Sound to the waters east of Chatham.  A special treat awaits you if we do head east.  The whale watching is often truly spectacular.  We might see sixty foot humpbacks leap clear out of the water and sometimes the boat will have whales on every side within a couple of hundred yards.

We will return to the dock by 4:00pm normally depending upon how far we have had to go to find fish. It's a long, hard day so get ready with a good night's sleep.

Some people have described offshore fishing as "hours and hours of boredom interrupted by a few minutes of chaos."  We keep things organized so there shouldn't be any chaos, but sometimes it does take many hours of trolling and searching to find the fast-moving fish we target.  All is forgotten, however, when the outrigger clips go bang,  line starts screaming off the reel, you get strapped into the harness, and you pick up a heavy rod bent double with the power of the ocean's hardest fighting fish.

Conservation and Regulations:

Tuna fishing is subject to very restrictive Federal quotas that often change over the course of the season.  Red Tail has all the necessary permits.  But we are very much conservation oriented and practice catch and release fishing whenever possible. We will not kill fish just to lay them out on the dock when we get back. Take lots of pictures!  All marlin are released without exception.  We will keep one or two tuna depending upon size and the quotas in effect at the time.  These are big fish and best eaten fresh so you will need to invite all of your friends over for the best sushi or grilled tuna you have ever tasted. 

Please note that there is a special rule that applies if we land a marketable giant bluefin tuna (73" in length or greater).  The fish will belong to the boat and your charter fee will be discounted by 50%.


We cannot accommodate young children under 12 on offshore trips.  The tackle and the fish are just too big for a small child to handle safely and the day is too long and exhausting for them to enjoy.  This is not scup fishing in the harbor! By the way, please bear in mind that some adults are not really up to the rigors of a long day fishing offshore. 

Also note the comment above about "hours and hours of boredom interrupted by a few minutes of chaos."  


A full day charter is approximately $1400-$1600 depending upon how far we plan to run.  There is a $150 surcharge for shark fishing to cover the cost of chum and bait and the lost tackle from cutting the leaders to release the sharks safely. We require a deposit of $500 that is non-refundable if you cancel within 14 days of yur scheduled trip and cannot be rescheduled to another day. If the Captain cancels your trip due to weather and it is not rescheduled, your deposit will be refunded in full.