Many of the southern Ontario tributary waters rose dramatically through the weekend and we are still seeing lower visibility in many of the streams that flow into Lake Ontario. If the clarity is at least 6-18″, spawn-sacks will continue to work well, but if the clarity drops below 6″, it can make for difficult drifting with trout & salmon eggs. Under these conditions I have had good results using wobbling lures, not just in the smaller tributaries, but even in the Niagara River. Niagara River guides know that when the Niagara gets “blown-out” by strong winds on Lake Erie (which dumps it’s murky water down the Niagara River), and they still have charters, they usually go to wobbling lures and drift them along the bottom in the same way they would be drifting spawn-sacks. If you are planning on using wobbling lures keep these two simple rules in mind;
1. If you are fishing smaller/larger tributaries and the water is pretty clear, use small size wobbling lures in natural colors. This would include the Luhr Jensen Kwikfish #5 & #7, Luhr Jensen Hot Shot 030, 035, in silver & gold, with light “accent colors” of greeen, blue, pink, etc., & skunk color.
2. If you are fishing smaller/larger tributaries with turbid water condtions, use larger size wobbling lures in fluorescent colors. This would include the Luhr Jensen Kwikfish #9 , Luhr Jensen Hot Shot 025, in fluorescent red, chartreuse/red spts. skunk, etc.
Barbara & I came back just before the Toronto Sportsman Show from a trip to south-east Florida. The weather was great and you might wonder what we do when we are on holidays. We golfed and fished. We had a chance to fish in the north Fort Lauderdale area both from a party boat (trolling for tuna, dolphin fish and king mackerel), and also fishing the piers for a variety of pretty bottom fish.
Even though we had windy weather and a Florida “cold-front” (temperatures dipped to 40F), we still made the most of it and golfed or fished almost every day.
Medium-action spinning or baitcasting outfits is all you need if you are planning to travel to Florida and you are thinking of doing some shore, pier, or bridge fishing.
If you go out on a charter or party boat, they have all the proper gear so you don’t need to take any of the heavy saltwater rods & reels.
Noel Gyger reports that they have been getting nice weather all week in northern BC. The spring melt-off from the mountains has not started yet so the rivers are pretty clear. Despite low water conditions some of the guides are doing well putting their clients onto some trophy steelhead. Both the upper and lower sections of the Kalum River are in good shape and water is very low, almost too low for jet boats, so it’s drift boat and inflatable time. The lower Zymoetz (Copper) River is still holding a few Steelhead and has attracted a fresh fish. A few fish are bing caught there by fly anglers. A few anglers are now starting to fish the main Skeena River looking for the spring run of steelhead. In the meantime lot’s of Cutthroat and Dolly Varden Char are keeping anglers busy while they work to get a steelhead on.
If you would like to get more info. on planning a world class river fishing trip in BC, you can contact Noel Gyger at, email@example.com .
Frank DeAngelis from La Salle, ON reports that the walleye are starting to move-in along the Michigan, US side of the Detroit River and anglers are starting to catch fish in higher numbers in front of the steel plants across from the north tip of Fighting Island. Top presentation has been vertical jigging right on the bottom using a 1/2 oz. jig with a 4″ plastic worm grub. The walleye are holding on the 17-27′ structure break off the shoreline. Anglers are also having excellent success catching jumbo perch out of Colchester Harbor, Lake Erie. Best presentation is fishing a “pickerel-rig”, or a “drop-shot” rig with live minnows near the bottom.
As the water temperature warms-up, more walleye will work their way up from Lake Erie and will hold throughout the river. If you are planning to fish the Detroit River anytime soon, make sure to also check the water clarity. Strong winds on Lake Huron and on Lake St. Clair can really muddy-up the Detroit River water clarity which makes walleye fishing much more difficult.
When water clarity is normal in the Detroit River, natural colored 4″ plastic worms work excellent as a plastic trailer on the jig. If water clarity is murkier, try using a larger, bigger profile plastic grub such as a 4 1/2″ Finesse Minnow, or 3-4″ Twister Tail grub.
Just prior to the rain we had this weekend, water conditions in all of our southern Ontario tributaries were low and clear, which made for tough steelheading conditions. Cold morning temperatures of -5 to -7 C, combined with north-westerly winds of up to 50 km/hr. made it almost unbearable to drift light floats using long rods. I fished with Roger Cannon and Bill Selby in Newcastle, ON and found that the steelhead that had moved up up to 1/2 km. from Lake Ontario, had dropped-back to the harbor and to the first current area up from the lake. Our best presentation was using long www.rapala.caMagnum steelhead rods ranging in length from 10 1/2 – 13″, with a main line of Suffix & Rapala 6 lb. test monofilament line and a 6 lb. test fluorocarbon leader. African Porcupine quill floats performed best using light shot to register the “light-bites”. Our best fishing was from about 8am – 11am, and than the fish turned off, or moved back into the lake. Bright sunny conditions did not help, and I’m sure as the sun rose, the fish became less active in the clear-water conditions.
Bill Selby was checking out the conditions daily and reported moderate success landing about 6-fish per outing. Most of the fish were fresh-run, they hit spawn sacks lightly, and fought sluggishly. The bite was short each day, lasting only about 3 hrs. Going to a lighter fluorocarbon leader did help to get more strikes once the sun rose higher. Most of the steelhead were female, with only about 2% being male. Even the male steelhead were lightly colored telling us that the fish were still moving in and out of the harbor daily.
We found that using smaller spawn-sacks from the diameter of a dime, and smaller, worked best as it got brighter out. Small hooks also made a difference. We both used #10 & #12 short-shanked hooks.