Cayuga Lake out of Taughannock 5/5 + Long Point 5/6


Had an interesting weekend guiding with some exceptional fishing on Saturday and steady action on nice lake trout Sunday.

5/5 Taughannock: Guided long time clients Dean and his brother Scott for the full day. Dean is a master brew-maker and formulated recipes for Yard’s Brewery in Philadelphia. He’s now doing brew for Philadelphia Brewing Company. It’s great stuff. The weather forecast had been changing a lot, so I brought salmon gear, laker jigging stuff and pike tackle. Casting for salmon and browns started out well and that’s all we did.

Fishing was very good from the get-go with Scott having the first hits and hookup. Dean then lost what appeared to be a spirited brown trout after it jumped at least 5 or 6 times! Even with the lamprey numbers up, the fish are feeding well and fighting well. We fished from the Frontenac Area all the way to the south end of the lake. One area provided a nice 20″ salmon plus a couple good lakers up shallow. We wound up with 4 nice salmon and 4 nice lakers – all caught casting. The biggest laker – around 26 to 27″, wound up hooked deep. As I filleted it I noticed a nice fish in it’s stomach. Sure enough, the big laker had cannabalised a freshly stocked yearling laker. Some people don’t know this but lakers are the top-line predator in these lakes. They eat anything they can and lots of them. No doubt Keuka Lake lakers are gorging themselves on fresh salmon, browns and rainbows now. People need to harvest more lake trout!

This is PEAK salmon/trout fishing on Cayuga! These lakers are fly-fishable. Picking the right days and fishing hard is still paramount, but now’s a great time. The fish are full of vigor. If I had one month to fish this region it’s without a doubt May.

Peak moment of the day was helping to “rescue” a couple canoeists (is that a word?) by the Girl Scout camp. In this era of everything being “about the kids” (which to me is silly)and “child worship” – which is so prevalent (look up the George Carlin bit on YouTube,) sure enough – apparently a few young girl scouts wanted to go out in canoes. Only problem is that Cayuga Lake had 12 to 15 mph North winds, whitecaps and 48 degree salmon friendly (remember, these fish thrive in places like Norway!) temperatures. So of course, who are any responsible adults to say “no” to 11 and 12 year old girl scouts? I mean the kids know best, right? Of course. In today’s world we have 8-year-olds decide what’s for dinner. And we seriously review 15 year old’s record releases. I mean, there’s so much wisdom to glean from their knowledge and experience…. (it’s been a long day – excuse me for ranting!) I’d much rather glean wisdom and insight from my elders.

So we saw these women with a couple young girls paddling around. I looked at Dean and said – “Is it just me, or are these people nuts?” I used harsher language than that. He agreed with me. As we started to head up the lake we got flagged down. Sure enough, the canoe had capsized (near shore fortunately, but still in water over people’s heads) and a leader and girl were in the water (with lifejackets.) Two other women paddled out without lifejackets to help them. The woman in the water wasn’t exactly petite. We pulled up and Dean (mostly) and I lifted the woman onto our boat. It took some effort! The girl scout was almost ashore. I’m sure her parents will be thrilled about hearing how the trusted scout leaders took them out in nasty waves and flipped their canoe. Had they flipped the boat out where we’d previously seen them, we might be reading some sad headlines today. We joked with them, I snapped a few photos (to be posted soon) and we went on our way. Interesting day to say the least.

5/6 Long Point: Guided long time clients (there’s a pattern here!) Stu, Steve and Steve’s stepson Colin for the full day. We had some slow-steady laker action all day long, with a bit of a slowdown during the latter half of the day. 12 year old Colin had the hot hand and landed at least 5 fish. Stu landed some good lakers and a nice bonus salmon. Steve also caught a fish and missed a few. I keep learning what works and what doesn’t and Steve was doing a subtle thing that cost him, but we figured it out. We had a lot of fun as always and the guys landed upwards of a dozen fish on a day that wasn’t real easy. Fish are scattered (as they usually are when water temps are ideal for lakers from 3′ to 300′!!! So bait is usually the key along with warmwater. The area along Dean’s Cove was particularly good. Trollers are reporting some good fishing for rainbows (we saw a 27″er taken today) browns, lakers and salmon. It’s fishing time!