Days on the Water: 5
Who we fished with: friends/clients
Where we fished: Lower Niagara, Lake Ontario, Upper Niagara, Lake Erie
What we caught: smallmouth bass, walleye, king salmon, coho salmon
Tactics: neds, jigs, spinner baits, crankbaits; trolling spoons and stick baits
Commentary for the Week of 05/23/2022 – 05/29/2022
Well, the peak of spring action is behind us. Lots of good times had on the water this past week but numbers and size were down across all species. It was an incredible month – best since I’ve been in business. I’ve got a couple more outings set up for early next week but after that, it’s time to recover from nearly 2 months straight of fishing and get ready for the summer bite.
Jordan and I passed on doing the podcast this week due to it being a holiday weekend. Catch up on the episodes you may have missed by tapping the link below.
Daily Conditions Analysis
Monday – Gorgeous day. Cool, light breeze, sunny. Fished Lake Erie for smallmouth bass. Amazing day – best numbers and size of the season.
Tuesday – Had the same clients from the day prior. Opted to do some exploring in the Lower and Upper Niagara. It was slow. Perfect conditions but numbers and size were on the low side.
Wednesday – Perfect conditions all around – mild temps, small breeze, partly cloudy. Fished Lake Erie – numbers and size were at entertaining levels but nothing close to Monday.
Thursday – South winds made Lake Erie far bigger than forecasted. Fished the harbor and a little bit of the Upper Niagara for bass – numbers and size were OK – definitely on the decline compared to recent outings.
Friday – day off. Had someone on the calendar but opted to reschedule – rain and wind in the forecast made it uninviting. Turned out to be an awesome afternoon though…
Saturday – little bit of rain early on then a light breeze from the NW. Fished Lake Ontario for salmon. Got our limit but it was a grind, and the fish were mostly immatures. Worked water between 80-200′ – yeah – they were spread out.
Sunday – day off.
Seasonal Assessment/General Observations
Well – the region is in full “transition mode” these days. Here’s a breakdown for each fishery:
Lake Erie – Although biggie smalls makes a daily appearance, the numbers of large smallmouth bass are on the wane. In general, numbers have been lower than previous weeks but solid outings are still happening.
Upper Niagara – there are beds everywhere. Every outing a couple fish in the 4lb class come to hand but, for the most part, there’s a lot of small/immature fish around. I’m leaving it alone until mid June when the post spawn action should be excellent.
Lower Niagara – steelhead are all but gone. A sporadic laker might emerge but they’re mostly gone too. Smalljaws are there but they’re in the same general pattern as the Upper Niagara.
Lake Ontario – kings are still readily available. However, smaller/immature fish have been prevalent. Work the green/blue or warm/cold water borders and you’ll find the most fish.
Bottom line, there are still good times to be had on the water but the action isn’t what it was a couple weeks ago. This happens every year around the same time (give or take a week or so) – the bass get into spawn mode and the bite gets picky OR mostly immatures come to hand. The salmon start spreading out, following bait into colder water, making them tougher to come by. This is when I take a breather/recover/get ready for summer bassing and walleye fishing. There’ll be a little vacation in the mix too.
Looking Forward to the Week of 05/30/2022 – 06/05/2022
Fishing Conditions Looking Forward
This upcoming week is looking great. Mild temperatures, only a couple of days with borderline problematic winds, and not a ton of precipation in the mix. I have a couple more bass trips this upcoming week so I’ll likely cover a ton of water in search of post spawn fish or go for numbers/immatures. Other than those trips, I’ll fish an inland lake or two for muskies but that’s about it. After well over a month of fishing nearly every day, it’s time for truck, boat, and well, physical fitness/maintenance (I lost close to 10lbs over that period – if you know me at all, I didn’t have 10lbs to lose – gotta get it back).
Carp are beginning to school up in the shallows, caddis are starting to pop, cottonwood seeds are starting to collect on braid, loose moss is around too. Those are all the natural cues that spring is coming to a close. In other words, it’s time to take a break and transition to a summer pattern of life. Stated a little differently, fishing every day isn’t going to be a thing for me until the end of June – when the bass are post spawn and walleyes are on the chew. I’m looking forward to it!
My summer calendar is getting packed so if you want to take advantage of stable weather, relaxing fishing, and good times on the water, be sure to call soon. We hope to see you out there.
Stay healthy my friends – mentally and physically,
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