Last Saturday Martin gave me a call and asked if I wanted to go out fishing again, and even though the weather forecast was nothing but wind and rain I still couldn’t turn down the opportunity. I made sure to dress appropriately with plenty of rain gear (my RedRam thermals and STORMR jacket were invaluable this trip) and a fresh change of clothes. We met up with Chris Jarrett and Landon Wieske at Port Dalhousie where we launched at about 7:30AM. Inside the bay the chop was manageable and within 10 minutes we were at our first stop. We tossed out the drift sock and drifted dropshots up and down a large reef at about 20-foot depths in the pouring rain for about two hours. We caught 3 keepers over 2 pounds before deciding to head further up the shoreline to one of the spots Martin had marked before on his GPS. The trip was very long, fighting the wind and the chop the whole way was difficult enough. There were moments where I swear we hadn’t moved in minutes and it probably took us almost an hour to travel only a few kilometers. We arrived cold and wet, but none of that mattered after a double-header of 3-pounders and Martin’s 5 pound 4 oz beast (the largest fish of the day). We had planned on meeting up with Chris and Landon before leaving, but the ride back to the harbour left Martin and I soaked to the bone and we were forced to pack up and leave. Apparently, we had passed the other boat several times but visibility was so poor we never saw them. Luckily everyone survived and had a great time!
On October 20th, Martin Szomolanyi and I hooked up with the intentions of fishing a local bass tournament on Lake Erie. Unfortunately due to weather concerns the event was cancelled, but we were already up and ready to go so we decided to take cover from the wind and fish the Niagara River instead. We met at the Chippewa River where Mark Hordyk, Chris Jarrett, and Landon Wieske showed up to join us. They also intended on fishing the Erie tournament and since that was cancelled we decided to throw our own impromptu event with a 20 dollar buy-in and a 100 dollar prize to the biggest bass of the day.
I didn’t win the prize, which would have been twice as sweet as the $100 bill was mine. The winner of the day was Mark Hordyk with a beautiful 4-pounder beating out a big pack of 3-pounders. Pretty damn good day of fishing considering the horrible weather we battled. The only thing I regret is not getting the photo of Mark with his 100 dollar bill and winning fish!
Here’s Mark Hordyk with his winning catch! More photos after the break.
I just watched this video Dave Mercer uploaded two days ago of him smashing smallmouth bass on Lake Erie and it really reminded me that I haven’t done any bass fishing this year.
Man do I miss those massive hooksets. Though, as you probably already know I’ve been spending many of my weekends in Algonquin Park, catching trout- a species I’ve never targeted in the past. I’ve even successfully taught myself and friends how to troll for trout in a canoe.
Check out the Facts of Fishing youtube channel for more!
Thanks to the hard work of Richard King, an associate professor in biology at NIU who has spent 30 years studying the Lake Erie water snake (Nerodia sipedon insularum), and his star student Kristin Stanford the species has now been removed from the threatened species list. Over the past 11 years they have tracked the population of this one-of-a-kind species found only in Ohio’s Put-in-Bay Harbor. Together they have been tagging and monitoring the species population and have successfully recovered the species. It’s a good thing too, because as it turns out the snakes are feeding on the invasive European goby and are slowly bringing balance back to their ecosystem.
You can also visit the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service website to learn more about the Lake Erie water snakes.
Megan Seymour, a wildlife biologist for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, says King and Stanford are primarily responsible for the recovery of the species. Seymour says there were 1,520 to 2,000 adult Lake Erie water snakes when the population was first counted in 1999. Today, King says, there are more than 12,000 Lake Erie water snakes.
The snakes are a key predator in Lake Erie’s aquatic ecosystem — feeding on species such as mudpuppies and native fish such as walleye and smallmouth bass. Since the 1990s, the Lake Erie water snake has preyed upon an invasive fish species from Europe called the goby. The snake has played a vital role in decreasing the goby population, which competes with native fish for food and space.
via USA Today