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emaxxman

Lake Topanemus - Freehold, NJ

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Has anyone fished Lake Topanemus in Freehold NJ? My parents live in Marlboro by the high school. I'm planning on going down there Memorial Day weekend to go fishing with my dad and son.

 

We're looking at lakes/ponds so my son can fish with us. I usually fish trout in rivers which are hard on him.

 

In general, how is the fishing at this lake?

 

I've never been to the lake or seen it so I have no idea what to expect. The website for it is under construction so there are no pics to see.

 

Any help or ideas regarding what to expect and what I should bring would be great.

 

Thanks.

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My wife grew up on Girard St backing up to the football field.

 

I live pretty close to Topenemus now and to be brutally honest the lake sucks. Very weedy, never fully recovered from being completely drained a few years ago and, being the only lake close to some not so great neighborhoods, the sustenance type fishermen pound the living death out of it during the daylight hours.

 

It's a shame what's happened to it, I remember catching some nice fish out of there.

 

It's completely closed and off limits after dark.

 

If your son is very young he'll enjoy the playground

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Hey there! What a coincidence, I'm from Marlboro too!smile.gif

 

So I've fished Lake Topanemus quite extensively, both from boat and shore. So hopefully I can help you out....

 

First off, Topanemus is not a very good lake IMO. In fact, i'd say its borderline terrible for several reasons. For starters, the lake is very very shallow! It loses its oxygen levels very fast and the fish populations deplete rapidly. I believe the deepest it gets is only 7 feet, not very much to hold oxygen. Most of the lake is 1-4 feet deep. In fact, I was there yesterday and I already saw fish dead in the water floating cwm31.gifcwm31.gif

 

But besides the oxygen levels, another issue I have is there tends to be a younger crowd at night that hangs around the lake that trashes it. I've seen some nasty pollution/waste floating around before, it's really a shame. On side note, I would not recommend fishing it at night, the folks hanging around tend to be rather sketchy.

 

Another issue somewhat related to the oxygen levels is the lake's water source. The water source of the lake is a very, very small stream that does not provide enough oxygen/nutrients to create a sustainable fish population IMO. Hence why the lake is so shallow too.

 

However, they do stock trout. And although I was quite negative in my review, there are some bass in the lake, but not many and nothing outstanding to speak of. I feel there are better lakes around you can fish.

 

Hope I helped, tight lines.

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Sudsy - My parents actually live on Girard Street. I didn't actually grow up there. I graduated from Keyport.

 

Thanks to you and MrTeek for your responses. I think I'll skip it (the lake that is...not your feedback... smile.gif)

 

 

What other locations would you recommend? My dad has had some luck and Holmdel Park. My memories of that (20 years ago) were that it was mostly sunnies. My dad has caught some trout there though.

 

I'm open to any other locations you can suggest...preferrably something close (no more than 30 minutes away.) I also would like something that has some "ease" to catching for my son...even if it's sunnies. I'm trying to promote an interest in fishing in him.

 

For me, I would like trout/bass/catfish...anything with enough meat on them to eat.

 

Thanks again all.

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Spent a lot of time fishing there in my younger years...it was great before it was dredged out- which was a half assed dredging to begin with.

 

I haven't fished there in a long time but now is probably the best time to fish it. I would have a boat and get to the back of the lake. Not all the way to the back as it's inches deep there. Throw Texas rigged sluggos and small bass assasins and just let the boat drift around as you throw to the edges of the weeds. Just blind casting basically. You can fish it till dark when the cops kick you out. Surface lures like POP-Rs and baby torpedos (when it was windy) used to work great too. Right now the fish are near the back of the lake in water 3 to 4 feet deep.

 

What truly killed that place was 1. the dredging and 2. clearing out the trees to open up access and beautification along the bike path. Cutting trees is the worst thing you can do because it causes erosion and the fish will not stay close to the banks anymore because they are too afraid as there is no cover. It used to fish well in the back along the banks but the trees are gone and so are the fish that were drawn to them. I bet you can still catch a few though. Stick with weedless plastics you will catch a few for sure.

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Any of the lakes in the Assupink chain could work

 

Spring Lake and Takanassee lake were well stocked with trout

 

That little craphole lake in Englishtown also got trout, I'd avoid that goosecrap covered ditch though.

 

If it's just for a day out you could go to Topenemus - How old is your son, if he's little he'll like the playground.

 

Marlboro/Manalapan is tough for freshwater, there aren't many opportunities

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Hey again. I think Holmdel park is a great place to take your kid. There's plenty of shoreline and they stock it with bass and trout. Both bass, trout, sunnies are pretty easy to catch there too. Also, Holmdel park has rangers that regularly patrol so make sure you have a license.

 

If you're looking for another close alternative, I would try Lake Lefferts in Matawan. Not much shoreline, but they have a couple of nice docks and its an easy place to catch small bass and sunnies. They also rent canoes if you're feeling adventurous.

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Here's a silly question (which is borderline ignorance and paranoia): is it safe to eat the fish out of Holmdel Park or Turkey Swamp?

 

I haven't been down to those lakes in years. Never ate the fish as a kid. Like I said, more or less ignorance or paranoia on my part but I do want to be safe. I grew up in Keyport and I probably would not eat anything out of the Raritan Bay there.

 

I'm more used to the freshwater rivers up in Warren county (where I live now.)

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My son is 4 1/2 and we just started fishing. I took him to Turkey Swamp Park the other day and got a bunch of nibbles but no fish. We had some equipment issues. If you dont mind driving a little there is the manasquan resivour (I know thats spelled wrong) in Howell. We will try there next time and we might rent a boat. Good luck.

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Check the NJ fresh water game laws magazine it has advisory on eating fish in it. You can find it online or at your local sporting goods.

Hope you and your son have fun

Knobs

 

As a side note: Everyone is suppose to know the rules in the freshwater,saltwater and hunting regs magazine BEFORE going out into the field. I see silly questions on the site all the time relating to rules and regs.

 

PS emaxxman that statement is not addressed to you.

 

View PostHere's a silly question (which is borderline ignorance and paranoia): is it safe to eat the fish out of Holmdel Park or Turkey Swamp?

 

I haven't been down to those lakes in years. Never ate the fish as a kid. Like I said, more or less ignorance or paranoia on my part but I do want to be safe. I grew up in Keyport and I probably would not eat anything out of the Raritan Bay there.

 

I'm more used to the freshwater rivers up in Warren county (where I live now.)

 

 

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I have a bunch of local spots but they're pretty small but very productive if you know what to use. I'll be glad to let you know if you shoot me a PM. Holmdel is alright if you like fishing next to a lot of people. There's always Turkey Swamp and Manasquan that aren't too far away either, but it's a bit trickier because the fish are pressured. Contrary to what people may say, the fishing around here is not bad.

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