Reports 5/19 – 5/22


With nice weather upon us, I’ve been busy lately.  Here’s the breakdown:

5/19:  Seneca Lake out of Watkins Glen – I wanted to get out and enjoy the weather before a good run of guided trips.  I hadn’t been to Seneca in a while.  Conditions haven’t been good for what I’ve wanted to do.  I did some salmon fishing/fly-fishing and a little bit of casting for pike.  With light to non-existent winds (easterlies) I only stayed out for 3 hours.  I had a nice salmon follow in a fly, grab it and then take off.  Somehow I missed hooking the fish.  There’s nothing I would’ve done differently – it was just one of those things.  Water temps are likely in the lower to mid-50s in much of the lake as I write this.  It should be another interesting derby.

I expect some good pike fishing here, weather depending in the next few weeks.  I looked over a few areas and took a handful of casts without seeing anything, but again – conditions weren’t good for northerns.

5/20: Skaneateles Lake – Guided Gordon here for a full day.  We’ve been doing a trip around his birthday annually for many years but due to the NY Pause order we had to delay it this year.  Water temps and conditions were good for about half of our day.  He had a good multi-species day fly-fishing and also spent a couple hours casting gear.  He nabbed a nice healthy looking 22″ rainbow, an 18″ salmon, a handful of bass and perch and a pickerel.

Nice post-spawn fly caught rainbow 22"

Average Skaneateles Landlocked Salmon 18"

5/21:  Cayuga Lake out of Long Point – I wound up guiding a double today. It wasn’t what I was expecting to do today but it worked out very well.

My AM trip was with Dave and his daughter Paige.  She really enjoys fishing and hunting – basically the outdoors, and had never caught pickerel before.  Dave also wanted to get a good handle on the laker jigging.  We started with the jigging and it was very good.  Fish all ran large and Dave nabbed 6 and Paige got 2.  Nearly every fish was a solid 8 to 9lber with the best running around 11lbs by my guess.  Pickerel action was good up north and they caught around 7 or 8 at least.  They ran to around 22″ or 23″ with most in the usual 19″ range.  Hard hits and spirited fights.   I showed them how to fillet pickerel.  We kept a couple of those and one laker.  Dave grew up around Keuka Lake and will be jigging it a bit this summer/fall.

My PM trip was with Ron and we went after lakers.  The bite started off good with him nailing three solid fish in short order.  After that the fishing slowed down.  We finished off the day with another 4 to 5 nice fish in shallower.

The lake trout fishing is going into its usual “pre-thermocline phase” with fish available shallow and deep and in-between.  Massive schools of alewives have moved in and the fish are feeding heavily on them.  Be in the right place at the right time and you can have top-notch fishing.  Make the wrong call and you’ll have a slow day. I’ve been on both sides of that equation over the years, but usually can make something happen.

Cayuga Lake out of Myers Town Park 5/22:  Guided a full day with Mark and Kevin.  We were hoping to do some late-season casting and fly-casting for salmon/trout.  This time of the year, trolling is often a better option.  Shore anglers can do well but trying to pinpoint fish for casting and fly-fishing while running around in a boat on the lake with large swaths of warm water can be tough, especially with the lack of wind that we’ve seen on a DAILY basis this week.  That has really made for better AM fishing at times and tough fishing on the day.  Kevin fished spinning gear and Mark tossed flies.  Kevin had a couple salmon follow and one laker.  Mark didn’t have anything on the flies.  We went to laker jigging after a few hours and wound up running north of Long Point.  That’s a run I don’t care to do from Myers (it takes me around 35 minutes with flat seas) but I will do what I have to in order to catch fish.  We probably could have done fine sticking it out on lower Cayuga but I knew up north was a sure bet and it was.  The guys landed 5 or 6 solid fish anchored by Kevin’s 30″er.   There are a lot of big lakers in Cayuga Lake this year. We are seeing very few wild fish for what it’s worth.  I’m not sure why but maybe the few years of wild production we’ve seen was more of an anomaly on Cayuga.  Time will tell.

Open dates are as follows:

May 28th, 29th and 31st are open.

June 2nd – 4th, 6th,  21st, 24th, 25th.

July through the rest of the year – most dates are open.