WEST ERIE COUNTY, DWCO Randy Leighton, WCO Brook Tolbert|
Small mouth fishing is certainly the hot topic in our area right now. Good numbers can be found hanging in the slower moving pools on most of the tribs
Anglers targeting Presque Isle Bay and the Lake are having a banner year. Most of the smallmouth seem to be averaging in the 3 to 4 LB. range. Tube jigs, jerk baits, jigging spoons, blade baits and live shiners and crayfish have all been successful. 25 to 35 feet of water anywhere off the lake shore can be hot.
Perch fishing is picking up in 25 to 35 feet of water due north of Walnut Creek. Reports from local charter captains have been good for this early in the season for Lake trout and steelhead. A few walleye are being brought in but catches are sporadic.
Current Lake Erie Temperature as of this writing is 58 degrees.
Northeast Marina Update:
Walnut Creek Access Update:
How to fish a Tube Jig:
Let the bait fall on slack line but be aware of your line at all times. Any movement of the line will indicate a strike while it is falling. Reel down, and with a snap of your wrist, set the hook.
If the bait reaches the bottom, gently raise your rod tip until you feel the bait. Do this two or three times and if it feels funny, set the hook. If you do not feel anything after the two or three lift and drops, reel in and repeat the process.
Use tube jigs while searching for large or small mouth bass in the shallows
In and around Presque Isle Bay, try rigging it weedless by using a Shaw Grigsby High Performance hook in the 2/0 size with a small weight inside the tube.
Use as light a weight as you can get away with without losing the delicate feel of the tube bait (Lighter weights in the Bay and heavier in the Lake).
Fish the tube bait around docks and brush or any other available cover with no weight, the slow fall will drive bass crazy.
Out in open water for smallmouth, fish the outside edges of large deep weed lines or large weed beds. As the day progresses, throw a weedless tube rig inside the weeds as bass tend to go deeper in the weeds as the sun rises.
Tighten your drag down for a better hook set. Once the fish is away from cover let off on the drag and let the bass tire itself out. The advantage of a longer rod comes into play here as it does the work of tiring the bass so you can land it.
Use different styles of lead heads ( round, darter, and chicklet are a few) to do different kinds of fishing with the tube. Each one produces a different type of fall.
There are many different types of plastics used in the process of making tubes. Use a soft plastic for open water fishing and a harder type for cover fishing such as brush and Lilly pads.
There are also many different colors to use but stay with the basics of greens and browns (pumpkinseed, motoroil, black with speckles, olive are all popular) for imitating crayfish and clear or pearl with metal flake colors for imitating baitfish. These are not hard and true colors, but day in and day out, produce the best.
Know Our Area Before You Launch:
Through the Erie Harbor Entrance between the North Pierhead Light (foghorn) and Inter Range Tower.
In the area adjacent to the Erie Public Dock, extending from the Erie Sand and Gravel Company on the West to the Continental Grain Company piers on the East. The restricted area will include the Canal Basin and extend northward to the harbor line (In short, the channel connecting Presque Isle to Lake Erie).
Within the boundaries of Presque Isle State Park, including the waters of Marina and Misery Bays and the waters along the bay and lake shore for a distance of 500 feet from the shore.
Water skiing, other than for the purpose of take off or approach, is prohibited within 500 feet of the shoreline of Presque Isle peninsula.
The anchoring of watercraft in the entrance channel to Horseshoe Pond, Fox Pond, Marina Bay, the Lagoons or the bridge at Misery Bay in a manner that interferes with the public use of these areas or in a manner which creates a hazard to other watercraft is prohibited.
The mooring of boats to any dock, wharf, pier, ship or boat launching facility in a manner that interferes with public use or creates a hazard to other watercraft is prohibited. Boats are prohibited within 100 feet of designated swimming beaches at Presque Isle State Park.
The internal lagoons from Marina Drive Bridge at the West end of the Long Pond through the northern entrance of Graveyard Pond shall be limited non powered watercraft and electric motors only.
Maps of the area can be found at most area bait shops and on many on line sites.
Fish for Free Days: