Otisco Lake 10/23, Cayuga Lake 10/24 – 25
Water temperatures in the region have gradually been dropping. They are now around 56 for most main-lake areas. I expect low 50s by the end of this week if we get continued cold air temperatures and some of the forecasted rain. Fall foliage is post-peak. There are quite a few bare trees but also some gorgeous pockets of color for those curious.
Otisco Lake: Guided Mark I. for a full day here starting at around 7:30 am. We’ve hit this lake around 3 times before trying for a Tiger Musky on the fly. It hasn’t happened yet. Mark’s a great fly-caster and lake fly-fisher. Our past problems stemmed from poor timing; he was on a fixed schedule and we had to go when we could, which often meant sub-par conditions. I was a bit concerned with today as well but he saw a more optimistic forecast than what I did, so we went for it.
Fly-fishing resulted in zero follows/hits from tigers. I think next time we get to this lake we’ll be able to remedy that. He did manage his second largest smallmouth bass (which was on a streamer), an 18.5″ fish. It fought great. He also nabbed a largemouth on this fly. We switched to gear in order to give his arm a break and he was able to land 5 tigers. They ranged from 22″ up to 30″. He had a follow from one around the 35″ to 37″ mark. It was a very nice fish. Overall a productive and fun day and now it’ll be a matter of getting one on the fly.
18"+ Smallmouth Bass on the Fly!
The 30″ fish was a chunker. I measured it and unfortunately it flipped back into the water before I could get a photo with Mark. He did switch on his Go-Pro while fighting the fish (and it gave a good fight) so I may be able to get a still pic of the fish to put up. It was gorgeous. The State does a great job with the Tiger Musky program here as well as the walleyes. Good numbers of young tigers bode well for the future.
Cayuga Lake out of Myers 10/24 am: Guided Bill and Jenna for a half day starting around 8:15 am. My weekend trips cancelled on Wednesday due to new travel restrictions put in place. Thanks to Bill yesterday and Zach today, I was able to fill the bookings. Bill has a place on the lake and was looking to do some pike fishing. I thought 10/24 gave us the best chance weather-wise for them. When I boated over the their place to pick them up, I had second thoughts! The wind was really blowing out of the north. This wind wound up dumping a lot of leaves and debris into the lake. We fished hard and long but never raised a fish today. It should be good once things settle out. I showed them a bunch of areas and good techniques to use for northerns, so there’s no question in my mind that they’ll do well once they get out on their own on a nicer day.
Cayuga Lake out of Myers 10/25 PM: Guided Zach and Kieran today for a PM 1/2 day targeting lake trout. We had some decent fishing for lakers with 5 nice fish landed up to around 26″. Fish were deep – 120′ to 150′. The sunny day that was forecast did not materialize and it wound up cloudy with a little more wind that we expected. The guys wanted to cast some bladebaits so we did that for around 1/2 hour without any action. Right now with wide swaths of 56 degree water, many trout and salmon are scattered in the water column. We did mark some nice bait balls and a few good “hooks” but no grabs in shallower water. It’s still beautiful out on Cayuga Lake.
Open Dates are as follows:
November: 1st, 15th, 20th – 30th.
December: All of this month is open weather depending.
My favorite things to do in November are as follows:
Pike fishing on Seneca, Cayuga and Owasco Lakes.
Top-notch pickerel fishing on the north end of Cayuga Lake, with bonus bass and pike available. I can combine this with laker fishing (either casting or jigging) on full day trips.
Lake trout on Cayuga and Owasco Lakes.
Mixed bag fishing on Skaneateles Lake.
November is a good month to target salmon on Seneca and Skaneateles Lakes. It’s also a great time for inshore (inside of 20′ of water) casting for lake trout using bass gear! Fishing typically ranges from good to excellent and the lakers hit hard and fight great. Bonus browns, salmon, rainbows and smallmouth bass aren’t uncommon.