It’s been a topsy-turvy fall with the combination of warmer temperatures, high winds and a few impressive rainfalls thrown in. We seem to be getting that rain all at once, though. Rain isn’t in the forecast until next week now. We will have to take what we can get.
Lake Erie and tributaries
In the lake, it’s been a tough bite. Perch are scattered, walleye have all but disappeared and bass have lock jaw. Rob Oram of Franklinville wanted to catch some walleye recently. He launched at Barcelona and didn’t find any significant numbers to speak of. He pointed his fishing machine to the west and kept going until he found fish. When he did, the boat was off Presque Isle in Pa. and he boated a limit of 18 fish. Walleye have been tough to come by off the New York shoreline. For perch chasers, fish have been scattered but you can catch some fish if you can find them. Steve Brzuszkiewicz of Marilla reports that he tried finding perch off Cattaraugus Creek over the weekend and ran out of the same place he hit them last week in 78 to 80 feet of water. Nothing. As he worked his way back, he found some perch in 57 feet of water. We heard a few were caught off Evangola and some jerked in off Seneca Shoal. The key is to find the fish and try to stay on them. The best catch we’ve heard in the past week was 90 perch. Bass have been schooled up but they don’t seem to want to hit … yet. Casting the creek mouths with spoons or spinners will also work for trout. In the tributaries themselves, the fishing has really started to pick up for trout. According to Christopher Finitz with Hold the Line Outfitters, fly action in Cattaraugus Creek has been fishing pretty well. Use white and dark olive zonkers in the stained water. Pink egg imitations and larger nymphs are also working to take trout. Finitz also says there are fish in many for the smaller tributaries to the south of the Catt. There were also good reports of fish in 18 Mile Creek in the Hamburg area.
Lower river fishing improved for salmon for the shore fishing gang when some stained water came through the system following a recent wind event. Rich Pisa of Kenmore reported that salmon were snapping on Monday where he landed six in the gorge around the Whirlpool. He was using all treated egg skein, fished under a float. Glenn Strzelczyk of the Town of Niagara was also doing well by casting Booker spinners. Ricardo Davila was using Booker’s Little Gem spoons. Boaters were still ripping some lips, too. With the stained water, it force them to drift closer to the shoreline. Some charter captains have stopped running salmon trips but there are still some fresh fish coming into the system. In the Upper Niagara River, Capt. Chris Cinelli of Grand Island reports that some nice bass have been around in the east river on shiners. He’s also been picking up some chunky perch in the same areas. Some musky are starting to hit as well.
Lake Ontario and tributaries
Plenty of salmon and trout are available in 18 Mile Creek at Burt Dam according to Wes Walker at The Slippery Sinker. Salmon are still hanging in the harbor and off the piers. A northeast wind will prevent fishing the latter. However, when you can get back out there to cast some hardware immediately following the blow, you can do well according to Mark Plennert of Niagara Falls. He enjoyed success on salmon and trout Friday after the last storm event. Fishing was on fire, tossing blue and silver spoons. When he returned Saturday, it slowed back up again. More brown trout have started to show up in the creek according to Scott Scheffler with Fisherman’s Park. The Oak Orchard River should be busy this week with the Archers Club Annual Catch and Release fly fishing tournament going on through Friday. Fish are spread throughout the river there, too, from the dam at Waterport to the mouth according to Mike Waterhouse of Albion.
Mike Sperry at Chautauqua Reel Outdoors sends word that he landed some decent walleye Tuesday evening jigging in the south end of the lake. Best baits have been Vibes, Gotcha lures and Jigging Rapalas. You can also take some walleyes by trolling with Hot-n-Tots or jointed Rapalas using lead core line or downriggers. There have been some good reports of bass off the points in 8 feet of water. Musky action has been hit or miss.