riverrunner

SUSQUEHANNA 2017-2018

820 posts in this topic

Thanks for the encouragement RR, I appreciate it! I realize it's tough and that is part of the challenge for me to figure out more methods.  I'll keep at it.

 
 

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#1 No....Not schooled up yet

#4 Yes....that trope about winter fish on this river in the deeper pools is just that a trope

 

Interested to hear your thoughts on this, RR. I attended a fishing show this weekend and the guide giving the seminar seemed to suggest that a HUGE majority of the bass from York Haven to Halifax spend most of Dec-March in one of two well-known wintering holes. He said there were literally thousands upon thousands of bass in these holes/spots. His theory was that there must be a very reliable winter food source in these two areas that doesn't exist in other areas of the river? Kinda made it sound like fishing any other area was basically fruitless this time of year? Obviously you've been doing this a long time and with great success, so I value your input. Do you not find this to be the case? Do you find that you can catch bass in the winter at the same spots you catch in the summer?

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Wheeler, it sounds to me like he only knows two good spots... lol  Ok partially kidding... But Im pretty sure this guy wants to keep anglers focused on two areas (bet I know which ones) and ignore all of the other spots that produce fish this time of the year.

 

I don't have a lot of add over what RR already posted. I do think they tend to group up some in the colder water... But I don't believe they are schooled up yet--like they do in the spawn/prespawn... There are lots of spots on the rivers right now that you can catch bass-BIGGINS! 

 

For me personally, I really think you need to learn to follow the river level gauge in the winter. For best conditions I like higher water that is slowly dropping... You need to develop a keen understanding of your spots--because the fish will relate to different areas as the water levels change. In good areas the fish then to relate to different spots on the spot or different structure at different levels and also water temps., etc... You only get this knowledge by spending lots of time on the water, and systematically eliminating water til you find 'em.

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Wheeler, it sounds to me like he only knows two good spots... lol  Ok partially kidding... But Im pretty sure this guy wants to keep anglers focused on two areas (bet I know which ones) and ignore all of the other spots that produce fish this time of the year.

 

I don't have a lot of add over what RR already posted. I do think they tend to group up some in the colder water... But I don't believe they are schooled up yet--like they do in the spawn/prespawn... There are lots of spots on the rivers right now that you can catch bass-BIGGINS! 

 

For me personally, I really think you need to learn to follow the river level gauge in the winter. For best conditions I like higher water that is slowly dropping... You need to develop a keen understanding of your spots--because the fish will relate to different areas as the water levels change. In good areas the fish then to relate to different spots on the spot or different structure at different levels and also water temps., etc... You only get this knowledge by spending lots of time on the water, and systematically eliminating water til you find 'em.

I wonder where there are 8 to 15 ft depths at a reading of 4.5 ? ;)

 

WORD !!!!!! on the last part !!!!  

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I wonder where there are 8 to 15 ft depths at a reading of 4.5 ? ;)

 

WORD !!!!!! on the last part !!!!  

 

Haha... Yeah, very true! I would add 8 to 15 boats parked as well lol :-)

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Interested to hear your thoughts on this, RR. I attended a fishing show this weekend and the guide giving the seminar seemed to suggest that a HUGE majority of the bass from York Haven to Halifax spend most of Dec-March in one of two well-known wintering holes. He said there were literally thousands upon thousands of bass in these holes/spots. His theory was that there must be a very reliable winter food source in these two areas that doesn't exist in other areas of the river? Kinda made it sound like fishing any other area was basically fruitless this time of year? Obviously you've been doing this a long time and with great success, so I value your input. Do you not find this to be the case? Do you find that you can catch bass in the winter at the same spots you catch in the summer?

 

Thanks for bringing this up as I was hearing about the same kind of stuff, that is why I asked! I like TJ's response that people want to keep you away from their spots, makes sense!

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Wheeler, it sounds to me like he only knows two good spots... lol  Ok partially kidding... But Im pretty sure this guy wants to keep anglers focused on two areas (bet I know which ones) and ignore all of the other spots that produce fish this time of the year.

 

I don't have a lot of add over what RR already posted. I do think they tend to group up some in the colder water... But I don't believe they are schooled up yet--like they do in the spawn/prespawn... There are lots of spots on the rivers right now that you can catch bass-BIGGINS! 

 

For me personally, I really think you need to learn to follow the river level gauge in the winter. For best conditions I like higher water that is slowly dropping... You need to develop a keen understanding of your spots--because the fish will relate to different areas as the water levels change. In good areas the fish then to relate to different spots on the spot or different structure at different levels and also water temps., etc... You only get this knowledge by spending lots of time on the water, and systematically eliminating water til you find 'em.

Thanks also for your input TJ and I especially value the importance on "having a keen understanding of your spots and how that relates to the change in water levels".  I think i"m getting a better understanding of certain ones for me but always need to focus on learning a lot more.  I think I spend too much time on unproductive water trying to make something happen rather than eliminating sections and moving on.

Edited by mdeppen

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I like TJ's response that people want to keep you away from their spots, makes sense!

 

I don't feel this was the case (at least with this guide). I follow his FB page and am on his email lists. He's on the river 200+ days a year and he keeps a very detailed log (which he shared with me). He said they do a lot of exploring and searching this time of year, but whenever they get a client trip booked, they always go back to the "old reliable spots" because they're the only ones that consistently produce in the winter.

 

One guy specifically asked about Goldsboro, suggesting that there was plenty of deep water here and hypothesizing that these fish were "blocked" from going up-river by the Dock St Dam, so they must be somewhere in this area. His first reply was that they absolutely do go up and over the Dock St Dam and are not blocked by it. His second response was that they've spent a lot of time over the years searching the deeper holes with electronics and have not picked up any repeatable patterns on the fish. He also said that if there was a reliable wintering hole in this area, it would be packed with boats because word spreads so quickly in the age of social media. I can certainly see his point. But then again, I also see lots of great fish being caught by guys like TJ and RR during the winter, so I know they can be caught other places as well. :headscratch:

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I think I spend too much time on unproductive water trying to make something happen rather than eliminating sections and moving on.

 

This is definitely me. This guide's theory was that you need to cover a lot of water to catch a lot of fish. He said he'll usually have 5-10 different places in mind when he sets out and will move quickly if one isnt producing. Likewise, he likes to anchor up (something a lot of guys dont do) and really fish an area hard if they hit a productive spot, rather than just continuing a float and fishing as they go. Pretty common sense stuff, but sometimes it helps to hear someone else say it.

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Thanks for the update and the input Wheeler, I appreciate it!  We'll see how we make out in 2017 moving away from quickly from "unproductive water", easier said than done for me but I do have it as a goal of mine for this year.  It's tougher with wading but maybe it means that I have to drive more to check out some better spots.

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This is definitely me. This guide's theory was that you need to cover a lot of water to catch a lot of fish. He said he'll usually have 5-10 different places in mind when he sets out and will move quickly if one isnt producing. Likewise, he likes to anchor up (something a lot of guys dont do) and really fish an area hard if they hit a productive spot, rather than just continuing a float and fishing as they go. Pretty common sense stuff, but sometimes it helps to hear someone else say it.

 

This sounds like good advice. I'm working from shore... so a little different but if you have the time, absolutely it is good to have a milk run of spots. Anchoring is a great idea--I know riverrunner has posted on this in the past.

 

I disagree in the fact that there are IMO repeatable patterns of fish in many spots in the river/s, not just the two consistent ones he mentioned. As you know, this guide is taking paying clients out so he doesn't really have the luxury of exploring a lot with other people his boat.

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Thanks also for your input TJ and I especially value the importance on "having a keen understanding of your spots and how that relates to the change in water levels".  I think i"m getting a better understanding of certain ones for me but always need to focus on learning a lot more.  I think I spend too much time on unproductive water trying to make something happen rather than eliminating sections and moving on.

No problem... One thing I will say is, for me a lot of times--in the lower water summer/early fall I will be fishing "nearby" (or in the same stretch, per se) as my better winter, higher water spots--but not in the same spot on spot places. Often in the summer, it's hard to notice the best wintertime spots--as they are shallow frog water type places that you wouldn't take a second look at. But when cold water comes, higher levels, fish move into these spots.

 

I know last week, I caught a few bass that honestly would have been on dry ground a couple months ago... two other bass I caught on grass in somebody's yard, seriously.

 

Really low water in wintertime is the toughest IMO especially fishing from shore.

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No problem... One thing I will say is, for me a lot of times--in the lower water summer/early fall I will be fishing "nearby" (or in the same stretch, per se) as my better winter, higher water spots--but not in the same spot on spot places. Often in the summer, it's hard to notice the best wintertime spots--as they are shallow frog water type places that you wouldn't take a second look at. But when cold water comes, higher levels, fish move into these spots.

 

I know last week, I caught a few bass that honestly would have been on dry ground a couple months ago... two other bass I caught on grass in somebody's yard, seriously.

 

Really low water in wintertime is the toughest IMO especially fishing from shore.

Thanks again TJ!

 

Often in the summer, it's hard to notice the best wintertime spots--as they are shallow frog water type places that you wouldn't take a second look at. But when cold water comes, higher levels, fish move into these spots.

 

This comment really made me think and I have not been giving it as much of a chance.  For some of the most productive spots in the late summer / fall there are definitely "frog water" areas in the vicinity that I have never done well with the smallies,.  Maybe these are the ones to target in the higher / winter water.  :headscratch:

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Here are some from the past couple weeks on the rivers... mainly jigs low and slow. Bite has been slowing down now though with lower water and colder temps. We need another rain!

post-3030-0-22671300-1486223066.jpg

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post-3030-0-81334700-1486223241.jpg

post-3030-0-07903100-1486223266.jpg

post-3030-0-57927600-1486223301.jpg

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But but but but your not fishing in the "two well-known watering holes" and January does fall between December and March. :laugh: 

 

I bet the carp was fun. :wee:  It's a toad !!!!!

 

Nice mix of fissshies there TJ, couple a pigs with those smallies.  :howdy:

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