Seneca Lake/Watkins Glen 4/3 + Cayuga Lake/Dean’s Cove 4/4


The guiding has really gotten into full swing in a hurry this season and here’s how things went:

Seneca/Watkins Glen 4/3: Guided Ron and his son Matt for salmon. This is their 4th time fishing with me over the past couple years and they have a knack for hitting thing just right! Saturday was no exception. To make a long story short, we found some warm water and the guys had some great fishing casting spoons and stickbaits. A total of 13 nice salmon and 2 browns were landed. All fish but one were legal, and all were released with the exception of 2 salmon that took the rear treble hook of the stickbait too deep. The guys had a couple 23″ salmon and a 24″er.

These salmon fight BIG. Steelhead fight great but proportionally – I’ve caught plenty of steelhead and what you see is what you get – a 4lber fights like a 4lber and likewise for a 14lber. Salmon fight so “hugely” – it’s a weird way to put it, but you put a net under a hot 23″ landlocked salmon and you’d swear that it was a 26″ fish – they just fight like it! Just amazing fish – and they spend more time in the air sometimes (seemingly) than in the water!

It was nice seeing a few (not many) people releasing some keeper salmon on Saturday. Many people keep most of them, but I’m always impressed to see these gorgeous fish released unharmed. Water temps hit 52 where we were fishing. Trollers reportedly did well throughout the lake from what I heard.

I saw a couple pike landed by shorefishers, as well as some salmon. After the trip ended I grabbed my fly-rods and fished myself for 90 minutes. The wind came up and fly-casting was doable, but tedious. I had a nice follow or two from a salmon, but decided to grab a spinning rod. I got a hit, and set the hook – snagging a lamprey! It was likely on a fish that took a swirl at my spoon. Next cast I landed a 26″ landlocked salmon! It got wrapped a bit in the line, so I was able to land and release it quickly. Wished it hadn’t got wrapped – I would have gotten a much better battle. I was disappointed to land what appeared to be a beautiful pike around 30″ and find it to be in great shape except for the tail – which was fungusy and rotten looking. I sure hope the pike situation turns around on this lake, but it doesn’t look promising. Our salmon had 2 lampreys attached on the day and some fresh wounds. The brown trout were not huge – 16″ to 17″ but fat and clean – in excellent condition basically. Great day. Photos to come soon!

BTW I had a nice meal afterwards over at “Mr. Chicken” in Watkins Glen on Rt. 14. Very reasonable and healthy stuff. I recommend it if you’re in the area. And no, I don’t get free chicken for the plug….

4/4 Cayuga out of Dean’s Cove: Met the Hermans at 8 am at the launch and off we went. Fishing for lakers was fantastic – we were in around 170′ of water – and even deeper at times. The Hermans – John and Eleonore managed to land 19 beauties on the day. Not a fish smaller than 25″!!! That’s Cayuga at its best – BIG fish and plenty of them. This early season jigging has turned out to be one of the hottest patterns I know in the region. The fish are really turning on and just monstrous. They are pulling hard! We took some nice photos which I’ll put up soon. We fished close to a full day – but the best fishing was from 8 am till around noon. We released all but one. Lakers in Cayuga are in good balance and we’ll be releasing more fish than usual this year, though I’m looking forward to firing up the smoker soon.

My PM trip was with Ed and his wife Kate. Ed’s joined me on quite a few trips over the past year and although the fishing slowed a bit, it was still good. Kate landed her first, second and if I remember right, third lakers today. All BIG fish. Ed landed a few beauties incl. one around 31″ to 32″. Great fighters and really nice fish. We kept two and they were full of alewives. Nice way to end a long weekend!