Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Friday, August 12, 2011
Licenses and permits can be purchased at one of DEC's 1,500 license sales outlets statewide. Sporting licenses can also be ordered by mail or by telephone and via the internet. The 2011-2012 sporting licenses are valid beginning October 1, 2011, through September 30, 2012.
The salmon bite has slowed recently but some nice fish are still being caught. It just takes a little more time and patience to hook up with the salmon at this time of the year. Salmon are being found at 40-60' in many areas.
Smallmouth bass fishing has been really good. fish are being caught on the reefs and rock-piles in 15-30' of water.
Rivers and streams were low but a few recent rain storms have brought them up a bit and the fishing has improved. Seek out the faster pocket water and fish early and later in the day.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has certified Dan Germain from Forestport, Oneida County, is the new holder of the state record for brook trout. Mr. Germain reeled in the record-breaking fish on June 15 while fishing at South Lake in Herkimer County in the southwest corner of the Adirondack Park. The new record brook trout, caught on a Lake Clear Wabbler and worm, measured 22 inches and weighed in at 5 pounds, 8 ounces, surpassing the previous state record set in 2009 by 3.5 ounces.
Saturday, July 16, 2011
Bass fishing on Champlain is good all over. Fish are now concentrated on the deep weedbeds and offshore reefs. The big Smallmouth bass are on the reefs and rock piles in 20-30' of water.
Salmon are being caught in 40' + of water and some nice specimens have been reported this week. Stingers, Speedy shiners continue to be hot lures. Lake trout are now close to or on the bottom.
Friday, July 1, 2011
The river levels are good and trout have been active early and later in the day. The fish are getting more cautious so a gentler approach is recommended. Try using smaller lures and lighter line. Fluorocarbon line is virtually invisible to fish. Tying on a 3' section of this as a leader can make all the difference. Caddis, stonefly nymphs, big Wulff flies and Cahills have been the flies of choice this week.
On the trout ponds the action has slowed although many of the mountain ponds are still a bit cooler than normal for this time of year and some nice brook trout can still be caught.
On Lake Champlain look for big largemouth bass on the outside edges of deeper weed beds in 10-20' of water. Smallmouths are along the rocky shorelines and points in 10-30' of water. Look for these fish to be moving onto the offshore reefs very soon.
Salmon and lake trout fishing continues to be good. We get reports of salmon in the 8-10 lb range being caught regularly by trolling. Look for the bait and water temps in the mid 50's and you will find the salmon.
Wednesday, June 29, 2011
DEC has received complaints of nuisance bears getting into garbage and destroying bird feeds. Homeowners should take down all bird feeders and take steps to secure garbage to prevent problems with bears. New regulation prohibits feeding bears, people that leave out bird food, garbage, pet food and other substances that bears may feed upon can be ticketed after a warning. 30 roadside campsites and numerous waters popular with anglers including Icehouse Pond, Helldiver Pond, Lost Ponds, Mitchell Ponds and Beaver Lake. (6/16)
The use of bear-resistant canisters is required for overnight users in the Eastern High Peaks Wilderness, and recommended throughout the Adirondacks, between April 1 and November 30. All food, toiletries and garbage must be stored in bear-resistant canisters. (4/28)
Friday, June 24, 2011
Salmon anglers are catching fish trolling anywhere from just under the surface down to 40-50'. The fish are still spread out at different depths. Some hot lures for salmon have been: Michigan Stingers, Cleo's, Needlefish, Honeybees, Dreamweaver Spoons. The large size and quantity of the salmon being caught is really amazing. This season has seen the best Lake Champlain salmon fishing since the early 90's.
Lake trout action has been a bit slower but many nice fish have been caught in the last couple of weeks. Trolling spooons at different depths down to 50' is what is working the best.
This has been a great spring for Lake Champlain brown trout and steelhead with more of these fish being caught this year than in recent memory.
Bass fishing action continues to be good. Most Champlain bass have spawned by now so the fish are a bit more spread out and the bigger females less active. Best action for smallmouth is on tubes and Senkos with dark colors like green pumpkin and watermelon. Topwater action can be great this time of year on lures like the Zara puppy, Rapala Skitter Pop, and Heddon Torpedo.
Thursday, June 23, 2011
Maybe this study will at last provide some scientific factual answers:
Study examines fishing tournaments' toll on Lake Champlain - WCAX.COM
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
A new LCI record was set with an incredible 11.42 pound, 30" Landlocked Atlantic Salmon. The winning fish was caught by Effie Mayhew of Wilmington, Vermont shortly after 10:30 a.m. Monday, the last day of the LCI Fishing Derby. The fish was weighed and released alive back into the lake.
Willsboro's Chet Halen was leading the salmon category all weekend with a 9.10 pound salmon until the new record fish was caught
The top Lake Trout weighed in was 13.17 pounds and 33" long. With the accelerated growth rate of many fish species due to the introduction of non-native alewives many speculated a much larger lake trout would take the top prize.
Other first place fish by species:
Smallmouth Bass 4.87 lbs.
Walleye 8.59 lbs.
Northern Pike 14.49 lbs.
Largemouth Bass 6.56 lbs.
Carp 23.19 lbs.
"In effort to increase fishing participation in New York State, this weekend is an ideal opportunity to introduce someone to the great sport of fishing," said Commissioner Martens. "This is also an excellent time for out of state residents to visit and sample all that New York has to offer a freshwater angler. Both residents and non-residents can fish for free during this 2 day period."
All anglers are encouraged to sign up as a fishing ambassador as part of the joint DEC/Recreational Boating and Fishing Foundation's Angler Legacy Program. Since the program began in 2006, over 11,000 New Yorkers have "Taken the Pledge" to introduce at least one newcomer to the sport. Recent research has shown that this program is making a difference, with Angler Legacy Ambassadors taking an average of 4.2 newcomers fishing; 68 percent more than non-ambassadors. Ambassadors also introduced an average of 3.3 youth to fishing; 73 percent more than non-ambassadors. Anglers interested in signing up for the program can do so by visiting DEC's Fishing webpage.
Those new to the sport are encouraged to attend one of the various Free Fishing Clinics that are held across the state. These clinics provide basic information on how to get started in the sport of fishing and many provide loaner rods and bait for participants to use. A complete listing of 2011 Free Fishing Day Clinics can be found at on DEC's website.
Although a state fishing license is not required during Free Fishing Weekend, all other fishing rules and regulations remain in effect. Marine anglers 16 years of age and older are also reminded that they must enroll in the no-fee saltwater fishing registry to fish for migratory saltwater fish species or in the marine district. To register, anglers can go to the usual outlets for sporting licenses, or register online anytime at How to Purchase a Sporting License on DEC's website. Anglers can also register by phone by calling 1-86-NY-DECALS (1-866-933-2257).
Visit the DEC's Places to Fish page or contact your regional DEC office for recommendations on places to go.
Anglers should also be mindful of the general statewide advisory that recommends eating no more than one meal per week from the state's freshwaters. Consumption advisories also exist for a number of other waters in New York. A full list of waters that have fish advisories can be obtained by calling 1-800-458-1158 or visiting the New York State Department of Health page listed in the right column of DEC's Fish Health advisory page.
Friday, June 17, 2011
Hatches on the river are march browns, caddis, bwo's and stoneflies.
Many of the smaller brooks and tributaries are producing some nice catches of native brook trout or "speckles" as they are known locally. These beautiful little fish are plentiful and will readily take a fly, spinner or piece of garden worm drifted into a tumbling pool. A bunch of little speckles fried up makes a meal that's hard to beat.
NYSDEC has a list of trout stocking targets on their website:
The list of 2011 Spring Stocking Targets are now available.The long awaited 2010 Fish Stocking list are now available.
Many more access areas are now open for launching. On the NY side Willsboro and Westport are both open. The floating docks are not in but are expected to be installed soon . We are hearing from fishermen that it is now possible to launch at all sites on the NY side although caution is still needed.
From NYS DEC:
The newly constructed Downtown Plattsburgh Boat Launch Site is open and ready for use. It is the only DEC boat launch site on Lake Champlain with floating docks installed -see below. (6/16)
All DEC boat launch sites are fully operational except for the following: (6/16)
Boat launches on Lake Champlain do not have floating docks installed because water levels remain too high
- The Downtown Plattsburgh boat launch is the only exception - it is fully operational.
- Although bathrooms have been opened at most of the boat launches,launching and retrieving boats will be difficult, especially for boaters not familiar with the location of ramps, walkways, docks, posts, etc. that are now underwater.
- The pump station is closed at the Peru Dock Boat Launch
- The floating dock has not been installed at the Chazy Boat Launch
Vermont Fish & Wildlife has excellent updated info on access areas on their website: vtfishandwildlife.com
Friday, June 10, 2011
Bass season opens on Lake Champlain Saturday June 11 (the regular statewide season opens on the 18th). This is prime time for Champlain bass fishing. Largemouth will be in shallow water along shorelines, reeds, weed beds and flooded trees.
In the Northern end some prime areas to fish are: Kelly's Bay, Monty Bay, Catfish Bay and Kings Bay for largemouth. For baits some favorites are Senkos, spinnerbaits, slug-go's and topwater frogs.
For Smallmouth bass on Northern Champlain Windmill Point, Point Au Fer, Pt AuRoche, and around Isle La Motte are all good areas to try for big early season smallies that are still shallow along the rocky shorelines and rocky points. Casting tubes, senkos and crawfish pattern crankbaits all work well. Look for topwater action to be turning on real soon. Nothing beats the thrill of a big smallmouth blasting a topwater bait on a calm day.
Mid-lake areas on the NY side to try for bass are: Ausable Point, Willsboro Bay, Westport Bay and Bullwaga Bay. Smallmouth are found along Westport Bay North shore, Willsboro point, the mouth of the Boquet River, Valcour Island, Split Rock Point, Crown Point, and rocky shores around Fort Ti.
This is also a good time to hook into a trophy pike as they will readily take most any bait that you might cast for bass.
Thursday, June 9, 2011
VT fish and wildlife has issued a press release stating that the lake is safe for boating/fishing: "Despite the high water, there are still plenty of areas to launch a boat on Champlain, and the lake is safe and boatable."
The Walmart BFL Bass Tournament is also taking place on the 18th out of Plattsburgh leaving one to question the wisdom of scheduling a major pro tournament on the same weekend as the LCI. The LCI is meant to be a fun, family oriented event for recreational anglers. With dozens of bass tournaments now taking place on Lake Champlain annually, even this weekend will not be free from the money driven business of pro tournament fishing.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Salmon are being caught around Split Rock Point and Whallon's Bay in Essex on Needlefish, Stingers and Thundersticks. Lake Trout are hitting off Willsboro Point, Port Douglas and Schuyler Island.
Bass fishing is hot on Champlain and right now is the time to be out there. Smallmouth are being caught in numbers at the mouth of the Bouquet. Up North the smallmouth fishing is good around Valcour Island, Point AuRoche, and Isle LaMotte. Most fish are in less than 15' of water along the shorelines and rocky points. Senkos, tubes and cranks are the ticket.
Largemouth are active in Bulwagga Bay in Port Henry, Fort Ti., and King's Bay to the North.
The rivers and streams are at perfect level right now and temps in the valley are in the lower 60's.
AuSable River West Branch: River level good, water temp is 62 degrees. Dry flies are tan caddis, March browns, The Drakes should be happening soon
AuSable River East Branch: Level good, water temp-62-64 degrees, latest trout stocking: last week, Flies: March Browns,caddis, muddlers, black stones, black or olive buggers.
Boquet River: Water level: ideal, water temp: 62 degrees, latest trout stocking: 8"-9" brook trout, 8-10" brown trout, 12-15" brown trout. Flies: March browns, some hendricksons, tan caddis, bead head hare's ear nymphs, black stones, buggers. For spin fishermen best producers have been: Roostertails in grey or brown and especially brown trout, copper or gold Phoebes, Mepps.
Boquet River North Branch: Water level: good, latest trout stocking: 8"-9" brook trout, 8"-10" brown trout.
Spruce Mill Brook: latest trout stocking: last week- 8"-9" brook trout, 8"-10" brown trout. Same flies as the Boquet
Saranac River: latest trout stocking:8"-9" rainbow trout, 8-10" brown trout. Water temp: varies avg. 60 degrees,
Schroon River latest trout stocking: last week- 8"-10" brown trout
Thursday, June 2, 2011
Finally a break in the weather...No rain but much cooler today. The rivers are dropping nicely and levels are very fish-able today. Reports of some real nice brown trout caught in the Boquet right in E'town this morning. Hatches on the river are Hendricksons, March Browns and Caddis.
In the lower Boquet at Willsboro salmon are still being caught thanks to the high water which is keeping them in the river later than usual. Some nice Smallmouth Bass are also being caught in the river along with an occasional Lake Trout. Salmon are hitting on streamer flies like Grey Ghosts and small spoons like Phoebes.
Anglers report catching Rainbow and brook Trout at Chapel Pond in Keene Valley. Fishing has been good both from small boats and on shore early morning and evening.
Lincoln pond fishing is hot right now. Largemouth bass are hammering Senkos fished in the stumps and weed edges. Remember bass season opens June 18, so catch and release only till then. Crappie are being caught on small jigs, spinners and minnows along some real nice eating size perch.
Sunday, May 29, 2011
Willsboro boat launch is open and some have been putting in there this week. Water is still high and docks will not be in for a while so extra caution must be used when launching there. Some nice lake trout, salmon and browns are being caught in the bay when the wind cooperates.
Friday, May 27, 2011
Lake Champlain remains above flood stage. The lake level which set an all time record this spring has been gradually receding but still remains very high. Many boat launches and accesses are still closed.
Anglers who are able to get out on the water are reporting good spring fishing for lake trout and salmon. Bass and pike fishing has also been productive. The high water has fish up in the flooded timber.
Please use extreme caution navigating as the lake is covered with floating debris. You may see a branch sticking out but floating just underwater may be a 50' tree.
Lake Champlain Remains Above Flood Stage (5/26)
* Floating docks have not been installed and bathrooms are closed at Peru Dock, Port Douglas, Willsboro Bay and other boat launches.
* Launching and retrieving boats will be difficult, especially for boaters not familiar with the location of ramps, walkways, docks, posts, etc. that are now underwater.
* The pump station is closed at the Peru Dock Boat Launch.
High Waters (5/26)
* Waters are high at most boat launches. Launching and retrieving boats will be difficult, especially for boaters that are not familiar with the location of location of ramps, walkways, docks, posts, etc. that are now underwater.
* High waters may contain logs, limbs and other debris.
* High waters also conceal navigation hazards such as boulders, rock shelves, docks and other structures that normally are easily seen and avoided.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
The local fishing is finally taking off. Stream levels have receded and are fishable after the rainiest spring on record. All area streams have received their spring stocking of trout.
The Landlocked Salmon fishing on the Boquet is really good right now. The water level remains high but fishable. Many reports of numerous healthy fish being caught below the falls in Willsboro. The recent introduction of Alewives in the lake has resulted in an overall increase in the size of gamefish that has been quite remarkable. We have heard of 2 fish in the 7-8 pound class caught last week, though I can not confirm this first hand.
These salmon are in the river to feed and are willing to take a variety of offerings. Some lures that have been producing well are: Phoebe's, Little Cleo's, and Colorado Spoons. Fly fishermen do well with streamers such as Grey Ghost, Black Nose Dace, Mickey Finn and White Marabou.