Skaneateles Lake 11/4 and Owasco Lake 11/5 PM

Reports

Skaneateles Lake 11/4: Arrived at the launch around 8:45 am with my buddy Eric just in time to see the NYS guys removing the docks. It's a shame that they pull them out so early in the fall, given the nice weather we currently have. They have a job to do – I get that, but it'd be nice to keep the docks in for another week or two.

We brought a bunch of tackle including fly-fishing set-ups, perch rods and some bass gear. The fly-fishing for trout was top notch, so we stuck with that for most of the day. Eric landed the first couple rainbows – one around 22" that was fat, then one around 24". I nailed a 25" and a 22"er. We had other hits, hookups and follows too – just terrific action. We caught 3 lakers and Eric landed another two rainbows – a 22" and an 18". All except the 18"er were beautifully colored males. I kept a 22"er for dinner and Eric ended up keeping a bleeder. Smallmouths were also active and I landed one just shy of 18" on a bugger. It had another 3 or 4 following it.

We set up for perch later in the day and landed 18 nice keepers. Another dozen or more dinks were tossed back. It's hard to top the angling on this lake on the right day in early November!

Owasco Lake 11/5: Got over here on my own around noon. Today was more of a "work day" as a guide; I spent the day scouting. I've pretty much managed to fish my way around this entire lake a few times over the years, but still have some alien areas that I've been meaning to learn. As a multi-species guide, there's a lot of time (aka "work") spent learning lakes. It's "fun work" for me, but I have to learn the deep areas for winter/early spring lake trout, then the 40' to 100' zones for the spring/summer fish and finally spawning areas. Then there's getting in shallow and learning the pike and bass areas again all in a seasonal way.

A lot of guides will tout their "experience" aka "..years fished on a lake." If you do the same thing, fishing the same areas for 30 years using the same tactics, it's the same as repeating 3rd grade thirty times. It means absolutely nothing. We had a discussion onboard about that recently and that analogy was mentioned! It's a great one. It's all about quality time and applying yourself. Deliberate practice is the key term. Greg Hackney had never fished Cayuga Lake in his life before the 2014 Elite Series Event here. He had some bass fishing that was better than any guide or local angler could've done! Nearly 20 to 24lbs a DAY for 5 largemouths, four days in a row (one day he only brought in 4 fish, but his average fish was around 4lbs!)

But the lakes change annually and sometimes weekly in terms of weed growth.The areas we used to catch pike in on Cayuga Lake in 2002 are completely different from where we caught them in 2006 and where we catch them now, and every year weeds grow in different areas or not at all in some of the old ones. Things change constantly.

Anyways I fished a bit and learned a bit today. Caught some decent pike and perch. I also raised some bass and even had a nice lake trout take a shot at a jerkbait in around 12' of water! That would've been a lot of fun and a heck of a good tussle!