Reports 6/3 – 6/6
Guided Cayuga Lake out of Long Point State Park over the past four days. Fishing for us was good to excellent on Friday and Saturday, decent on Sunday and tougher on Monday. I would not call any of the fishing “easy” like the deep bite was from March through early-May. I had to search around a bit and rely on past experience to locate active fish. Good numbers of lake trout and other salmonids remain north of Long Point, although this is usually a good time to fish lakewide. Many groups of fish have likely migrated south.
Like Seneca Lake, Cayuga Lake has decent localized populations of lake trout. Fish can be caught around areas like the old Power Plant and Sheldrake year ’round. It’s the same with largemouth bass and perch fishing. There are localized populations and also migratory ones.
6/2: Guided Kevin, Andrew and Dan for a 1/2 day AM trip starting at 7:30. The bite was somewhat slow to start then picked up for us as the day went on. Our last hour and a half featured an excellent bite. We found quite a few shallow fish. Baitfish were very thick in areas and Kevin managed to snag two alewives during the morning. He also had around 4 or 5 follows from silver fish – likely rainbows, on the day.
6/3 PM: My afternoon trip was with Steve and his son Nate who was visiting from California. Steve joined me back in late-March for a deep jigging trip. We started off where my AM trip left off and has another stellar outing. (Both trips were double-digit trips.) Very few other boats were out and the guys had a ball.
6/4 AM: This trip was with Jack – who’d also joined me a couple times already this spring for some good deep jigging. Jack brought Erik and Sarah with him this time. We had an OK start to the morning, then I made a move that paid off well. We got into a bunch of fish up feeding shallow and had a lot of fun. Jack got enough trout to smoke a couple batches of fish. Erik and Sarah have done their share of trolling up on Lake Ontario and both reported having a lot more fun jigging lakers. No need to sit in line and wait your turn for the next rod to go off – you fish the whole time!
Nice bloody catch!
I much prefer pics of fish that are still alive, but they certainly are easier to hold once they’ve been in the cooler for a bit! It was another solid double-digit day.
Jack's cooler on the way home as the lake kicked up
Jack took this shot as I motored us back home. This time of year, it’s vital to have a cooler with ice onboard. Jack’s cooler had ice underneath. Fish will spoil quickly if left in livewells.
6/5 AM: Today was a trip with Jeff and his friend Dave, who’d both been out with me before back in 2019. Today they were joined with Alejandro, from Cuba (!) who had never fished before.
Anyone familiar with the Ithaca music scene in the 1980s and early 1990s would know Jeff from the band “The Horseflies.” They had a very esoteric sound and had a major label deal for awhile. Look up the song “Roadkill” to get an idea of their sound. That song illustrates a common, unfortunate facet of life for people who drive around the Finger Lakes region. I actually saw them play a couple times before I moved south to this area from Rochester. He enjoys fishing a lot.
As an added note, for people interested in music, Jeff’s father in-law is one of the greatest jazz pianists of the 20th century. Look up Dick Hyman on YouTube or anywhere else for that matter and you’ll have your ears blown away. He is still alive and was a master – being able to play stuff like Fats Waller masterfully.
We had a somewhat slow but steady bite throughout the morning. We did have couple doubles and even a short-lived triple for a little bit, but we also had some lulls in the fishing. Overall the guys wound up with a nice catch of 9 solid lakers on the day.
Alejandro and Dave and myself
Dave with a laker
6/6 AM: Today was a three-gal trip. In all my years of guiding, this is probably my second or at most third trip with three women. I’ve done a fair number of trips with two, but again, not many with three.
We had a late start today, due in part to the drivetime (they came from around Penn Yan and got in late yesterday and are on vacation) and also some license issues online. I fully and absolutely recommend getting your license the day or a couple days before your trip. If you go to a Walmart, often times the computers are down or there’s some snafu. Online can also be a pain. My recommendation is using the phone. Go on the NYS DEC website and you’ll find the number, which is open and manned during usual business hours. I should have mentioned all of this to Melissa, who booked the trip but I didn’t think about it at the time, so I’m writing it in now. It wasn’t a big deal for us.
Larissa originates from Zimbabwe and then South Africa and she’d never fished before as far as I know. She managed to nab two lakers today and it was a riot watching her reel in the fish. Melissa also managed a fish as well. Her mom Sue had a couple hookups but never boated one. The gals were happy catching a few fish and were eager to get a bite to eat and hit the wine trail, so it was a pretty quick trip.
Anybody that thinks guiding is all about the catching doesn’t know much about guiding. It’s 100% about the clients and what they want and expect on a day’s fishing. I know people who’ve been with guides who are great at “catching” but are miserable people to spend a day with. Ideally as a guide you need to be able to figure out what people want and to manage and meet, and better yet, exceed their expectations. Maybe someday I’ll write a book on my guiding “career.” Figure that stuff out, and you’re good to go as a guide. You still need to be able to produce, but that’s just the start.