Seneca Lake out of Watkins Glen 9/21, Geneva 9/19


9/19 Geneva: Did an abbreviated 1/2 day with Jim and Bill for lakers. I’d brought pike gear for after the trip, but the lake was very choppy so I never checked on the pike. I picked the guys up at Bill’s place on Glass Factory Bay and we motored north to Belhurst. I had contemplated fishing Cayuga today, but the guys really wanted to fish near Bill’s place, and the weather forecast looked optimistic. I almost never fish out of Geneva on south winds – it’s usually a bad move, but it paid off for us today for an hour or two. Bill landed three solid lakers including a 28″ clean, beautifully marked fish. The south winds kept building and after taking a few waves over the bow and watching as they got progressively taller, we called it a day. It was downright nasty out! Best action was 90′ to 100′ and the usual white shakers did the trick.


9/21 Watkins: Got out around 10:30 am on my own to check on a few things. Pike fishing has really improved on Seneca Lake this season. I thought 2009 was abysmal out here and in 2010 we started seeing the small ones again. This spring showed some very good action. There are fairly strong classes of pike in the 22″ and 25″ range, with a few bigger fish thrown in. I spent around 3 hours casting for pike today and was somewhat impressed by what I saw. It wasn’t quite the no-brainer fishing of 2006/2007, but it was good – there are fishable numbers out there. I caught pike in three completely different areas today. Most fish were in around 10′ to 20′ of water. Fish were hitting very hard and fighting very well. Best one was around 33″ and well-proportioned. Swimbaits did the trick.

The numbers of smallmouth bass I’m seeing on this lake are exceptional. The southern portions of Seneca are loaded with mostly smallish (sublegal and barely legal) fish – and they range from 10′ to 50′ of water. I had a school of 3 to 4lb bass follow in a swimbait intended for pike today. The collapse of the pike fishery in 2008/2009 allowed the bass a chance to rebound.

Perch fishing isn’t bad right now according to a past client/friend of mine I ran into. Some good fish are scattered in deep water but are cooperating. I worked some deep jigs for salmon today and didn’t land any, but I found some. I barely scratched the surface regarding what I wanted to do today. I had a lot of areas I didn’t have time to check out. Water temps are in the mid-60s. Very few boats were out fishing.