Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Lake Powell

 It has come up 6 inches since last week. Spring runoff has begun a bit early due to warm days in March. That may change as another storm front is now on the way. Early runoff is a double edged sword for fishing success from Trachyte to Good Hope Bay. This week, reports indicated good steady fishing success for smallmouth bass, walleye, stripers and largemouth. Catching was steady for those using bass jigs along the shoreline and trolling with wally divers and shad raps at 2.5 to 3 mph in open water.
Early runoff will “muddy the water” and have some impact on fishing success in the northern lake. Right now the mudline is in the vicinity of White Canyon/Trachyte. The muddy water could move quickly downstream depending on the strength of the Colorado River inflow. Anyone headed to the northern lake this weekend will find good fishable water and good success in catching a wide range of species.
In the southern lake bait fishing was working better for stripers than most other methods. Most anglers were finding success at the dam. One reported suggested cutting an anchovy in half and hooking it on a 1/4 oz. leadhead. “Then cast the bait out about 50 to 60 feet into deep water and let it just drift down on its own arc controlled by the length of line out. By the time it gets to about 40 to 50 feet deep you’ll get a good bite.” The Wahweap fish cleaning station was busy every day with many fishing crews bringing in 20-30 fish to fillet

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Early season bass

Early season bass fishing is usually a shallow water affair. During May and early June any shallow cover like reeds, fallen trees, or docks and boat lifts is a probable spot to locate bass. A simple way to target fish in the shallows is with a “do nothing” soft stick bait fished weightless.          
Soft stick baits look like the common ballpoint pen and don’t provide much action when rigged weightless. What I like to do is hook them “wacky” style, inserting an over-sized Kahle-style hook into the bait’s middle. When rigged this way, the bait has a tantalizing fall with each end providing just enough wobble to attract any bass lurking nearby to come over, inspect, and often eat the bait.
This is simple fishing where I cast the bait to shallow cover and slowly let it fall while watching for bites. Depending on water clarity, sometimes I see the bass approach and bite, other times I simply see the line start to move off. Patience to let the bait sink and sit is key, as bass will often come and take the bait, even once it’s reached bottom.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Percy Priest

The last week on Percy Priest has been very productive. The bass have been biting up-lake in the river off the mud flats around wood. Crank baits, rattle traps, and top water lures have been successful. Down-lake has been productive when you can get into the right pattern. However, it can be a very slow day until you find the bass on the lower end. Alabama rigs and jerk baits have been the ticket. The crappie have been biting well between Fate Sanders and Jefferson Pike Bridge. Fishing brush piles in 10-16 feet of water, stumps, brush piles off the mud flats are effective. Casting Crappie Magnets in chartreuse and clear or tight-lining minnows 2-3 feet off the bottom has been effective. Lastly, the hybrid fishing has been phenomenal. Both trolling and casting plastic shad baits has produced quantity and quality fish in the 5-15 pound range. These hybrid have been suspended in 10-20 feet of water mid-lake.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Cheatham Lake:

 As of Monday afternoon, Sycamore Creek is 49-50 degrees and the main lake is 48 degrees. Both are stained but not muddy. Visibility is 1-1.5 feet. I have been catching most of my fish on Strike King chrome with a black back Red Eye Shad. Ordinarily this time of year I would be using jerk baits, crank baits or swim baits, but the low visibility gives me less confidence in these tools since we are more dependent on sight due to very little sound generation. If the water clears up, these would be my baits of choice. The other important thing I learned this week is the importance of my electronics. Similar to the fall season, if I did not find shad and fish on my electronics, I caught very few fish. When I did find these concentrations, I did very well. Where these concentrations are depth-wise is also critical since the fish are not as active and won’t chase as well. When you figure the correct depth range, count your bait down to the proper depth and yo-yo it right through the middle of the school for best results. I also learned that the concentrations have moved slightly from day to day. It may have only been 300-400 yards, but if I had not noticed this on my electronics, I may have completely missed the bite. Currently the concentrations have been in the main creek channel, but this could change with the approaching warm temperatures.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


Jerkbaits should be very effective as will the Bama rig. Fish a tube in smallmouth areas, and the action should be quick. Spooning is still effective on both bass and walleye. If you are fishing for walleye, plan to spoon 45 to 50 feet deep.
Crappie are being caught around brush piles on both lakes. Live minnows and small Bobby Garland baits have been working better than anything else. A few white bass are still being caught from Udall to the state line on Norfork. Several anglers reported good catches of big bluegill on Bull Shoals last week, with most fish being found in the 20- to 25-foot range.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Hemlock Lake

Hemlock Lake, also known as Straight Run Lake, supports a good fishery comprised primarily of largemouth bass, panfish along with northern pike. Its modest 60 acres cool quickly, increasing the odds of a lengthy ice fishing season. Just to the east, State Game Lands 174 provides nearly 4,000 acres of public hunting boasting a variety of habitats.
Hemlock Lake (as it will show as on most maps, including Penn Dot maps), is a relatively infertile body of water that, despite this lack of productivity — water chemistry-wise — plays host to a respectable fish population, largemouth bass in particular. It reaches depths of more than 30 feet and has significant weed growth in the shallow zones — consisting of about 30 percent of the lake’s total acreage.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Lake Macbride

Any size motor may be operated at no wake (5 mph). The fish cleaning station is shut down and most boat docks are out. The fish cleaning dock at the main ramp is still in along with the dock in the bay by the Sailboat ramp. Black Crappie - Fair: Use jigs or minnows over brush/stumps in 10-15 feet of water. Walleye - Slow: Vertical jig over structure in 14-18 feet of water. Largemouth Bass - Slow: Try spinnerbaits and crankbaits fished along rip rap. Wiper (Hybrid Striped Bass) - Slow: Fish are hit and miss. Most fish are smaller, but some bigger fish have been reported in the past week. Most fish are deeper during the day and shallower towards evening.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Allegheny River

The Allegheny River in Clarion County is populated with walleye, smallmouth bass, muskellunge and northern pike. Anglers are saying the fish are in the water mostly from East Brady to Emlenton.