Cayuga Lake out of Myers 9/9 + 9/10
Did back to back full days this weekend. Barney's/Bear's Derby was in full swing. Lakers on the board topped out around 12lbs, non-lakers I believe were in the high single digits (6 or 7lbs) and bass topped out just over 4lbs. Dates are starting to go quickly for the remainder of September and October. With continued cooling temperatures we may see some good pike action shortly. With luck we'll be fly-fishing the lake for salmon by the end of October or first week in November. We'll see – anything can happen between now and then.
9/9: Met Greg at 7 am and we proceeded to search for brown trout and occasional lakers. Our day was very slow with what fish we could find in a negative mood. He landed one small lakers. He had a follow and a few short hits (the follow was a brown) but did not connect. Quite a different day from what we had last week. I get asked about non-lakers on occasion and I suggest targeting lakers and accepting the occasional bonus fish. Lakers in the Finger Lakes are numerous and provide great sport.
9/10: Stablizing weather is now upon us and Tom and his brother John could not have picked a better day to go jigging! I didn't realize that Tom and his brother had won the Memorial Weekend Derby on Seneca Lake the year after Jarrod and myself won it (we won the 49th and Tom/John won the 50th with a giant brown.) That was awesome to find out – not just because I got to hear the story behind the fish firsthand, but because I had known Tom since my days as front-end manager at the Lighthouse Restaurant (now the Busy Bee) at Kidder's Landing just south of Sheldrake. Tom was around 16 years old back then and ran the fryer. These guys are very passionate, excellent fishermen/hunters and the day just flew by.
The main reason the day flew by was the bite – it was exceptional throughout the day. The guys landed 30 lakers and one nice 22" rainbow. All fish were released unharmed and the rainbow went 22". We had at least 5 wild lakers in the mix. Great bite! Lakers ran to 29". The guys had me do some fishing too and I had a nice brown follow in a jig. John had a big salmon follow in one of his which was cool to see.
Fall fishing can be somewhat complex for lakers on Cayuga Lake. There are days of hot fishing and other days when fish are lock-jawed. We get more cold fronts and they are more intense. Fish seem to be affected more by the fronts come September. Light penetration and moon phase also tend to play a larger role than in the summer. Fish are moving into spawning mode and the thermocline is gradually dissapating as well i.e. there are lots of factors to consider.