As his passion grew in the early 1970's, new and more challenging species became a focus and the saltwater fly fishing game began as an 11 year old wading areas like Gray's Creek and the Mill Pond in Westport, CT. His tackle consisted of an eight foot Fenwick glass fly rod and Plueger Medalist reel. He had already been tying his own freshwater fly patterns and so he created some very flashy deceiver patterns to target the saltwater species. Chris became fascinated at all the possibilities while targeting striped bass and bluefish in the surf and so his territory expanded and he soon became a true local expert fishing the Housatonic River estuary in Milford and Stratford as well as Penfield Reef in Fairfield, CT. While many anglers were desperately seeking the elusive striper back in the 1970's and early 80's Chris was tuned into the resident wild bass fishery of this productive river system. Once he was able to drive at 16 he started trailering his Dad's boat to all of these areas and that is when the saltwater bug really bit him hard!
Now he not only targets trophy striped bass on the fly rod but also specializes in live bait fishing as well as light tackle spinning for his charter clients who quickly see his competitiveness and passion for the sport. Chris is constantly upgrading his knowledge of the Western Long Island Sound but has expanded his territory now to areas like Watch Hill, RI and Block Island where the summer fishery is typically exceptional.
2011 yielded stripers up to 62.5 lbs. and the trend continues to improve for large bass.
Remember - "It's all about the Hunt".
Captain Chris Elser's has been published and contributed to articles in several national and local publications such as Saltwater Sportsman Magazine, Sport Fishing Magazine, Outdoor Life Magazine, On The Water Magazine and several other journals.