Lake Ontario out of Oswego Harbor 8/11


Got out with my buddy Terry for another crack at some lake fish. We set up for some brown trout and did not score. The temperatures have stabilized a bit after last week’s upwelling. The break was around 65′ to 80′ or something in that range. The fleet was out more or less off of the stacks and slightly to the west. We worked water more to the east. We did catch a deep smallmouth and hooked a couple others that fooled us momentarily.

The waves were in the 2′ range. We set up for bass and had some terrific fishing over the next 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Terry had the hot hand landing 7 solids and I caught 4. These are not the smallmouths of the 1990s and 2000s! These are fat goby-fed brutes with some incredible strength for their size. Most were in the 3lb range. We caught them via tubes and dropshot. I don’t think a good class of smallmouths has been produced in a while, but we may see one soon. With warm lake temps and a warm late spring it is often what happens.

In terms of our salmonid quest over the past four weeks, I think next year we’ll spend more time around the Rochester Ports and areas west. It’s a little more driving but it’s more my “neck of the woods” anyways, since that’s where I grew up. But we just aren’t seeing anything great around Oswego apart from the bass so far. I know Charter guys must be catching some decent fish but when we arrived at Wrights Landing at 6:15, we were the only boat there – that says a lot. Around 8 to 12 charters were out all AM. They were moving all over the place which tells me that it’s likely they weren’t slamming fish. I’m sure the browns are around but we haven’t seen those set up as in years past. We also have to take into account last springs brutal lake temps which may have hurt the brown trout. Who knows? But in past seasons finding the browns was easy out of Oswego – getting them to hit was the hard part, especially as the AM progresses.

For what it’s worth, thus far our best, most fun lake jigging has been the lakers out of Stony Point. And I don’t care what any troller says, when you catch a 10lb laker jigging you get one heck of a fight.

We marked a lot of small pods of bait out of Oswego. Not much overall. I find that it’s funny that some people want to put the blame on Lake Ontario’s bait situation on lake trout or they feel that they’re the biggest threat to Lake Ontario’s future. Really? Last time I checked, Chinook salmon (i.e. Kings) push around 20 to 25lbs after just 3 years in the lake! That’s an eating machine! A 3 year old lake trout is a dink – that’s not even much of a catchable fish. I’d bet that it takes 15 years or more for a laker to hit 25lbs. And very few ever do. It’s like working at a donut shop and finding an employee is eating all your product – do you blame the 400lb women who was 110lbs soaking wet the day you hired her three years ago or the old man who is only 150lbs? “You ain’t gonna learn what you don’t wanna know.”

Next time I get out on my own it will likely be on a Finger Lake. Time to catch some fish!