Owasco Lake 9/21


Once in a while I get a call or email from someone who’d like me to check out their boat setup and see what’s good and what needs tweaking. I don’t guide on other people’s boats – and I do get a handful of offers a year to do it. My insurance wouldn’t cover me and frankly it’s not something I would want to do. I tried it once and despite good intentions, the angler’s trolling motor battery was dead, there were no lifejackets and the electronics weren’t working well. I like my own setup and maintain and know it well. Not much to report here, but I spent some time on Gordon’s Tracker out of the South end of Owasco Lake.

No need to get into details, but info that’s worth mentioning is that the lake temp is at 65 degrees. The weeds look great on the lake’s south end. The water level is low, but it’s very launchable with smaller craft on the south end of the lake. I brought along a couple laker jigging set ups and he got a feel for working his trolling motor while fishing a few points. He had no luck on the lakers but had some deep bass follow and hit his jigs.

I love owning a boat. Even before I started guiding, I realized how valuable the freedom was that came from being able to fish where and when I wanted to. I have a few clients that book upwards of a half dozen trips a year. That may sound expensive, but 3 one-half daytrips and 3 full day trips for 2 ppl. works out to around $1800. Buy a used 16′ Tracker, let’s say for $7500 and run it for 5 years and you’re automatically looking at $1500 a year. Do 15 fishing trips a year on it and that’s $100 a trip. But that doesn’t figure in the following: Tackle (just the line I use for jigging lakers runs about $30 a spool for 300 yards,) fuel both for the truck and boat, boat accessories – like an anchor, drift bag, flares etc…,maintenance, boat launching fees, bait (if you use it,) storage etc…. Plus with a guide you have someone else with know-how running the boat. All you have to do is fish. And you’ll have a more stable lake-worthy boat capable of fishing Lake Ontario, Oneida Lake or the bigger Fingerlakes with some wind added in. I’m not saying don’t buy a boat, but be aware that unless you’re using it30 or more times a year, you might be better off going the guide route.