July 27, 2016
The fall steelhead run is still weeks away so any post now is only relevant if it discusses preparations or prospects. Let’s go with prospects.
What “stocking year-class” of steelhead smolts will form the majority of fish running this fall?
Here is what the professional biologists tell me.
Not all fish make an annual run into the tributaries, but the ones that will run this fall are in these categories. After 1-year in the lake the 2-3# 17” jacks stocked in 2015; larger mature 23”, 4-5# steelhead stocked in 2014; 26” 6-7# fish stocked in 2013; and 8-10# 28” fish stocked in the spring of 2012 will be entering tributaries this fall. You can check the total number of steelhead stocked in specific tributary for a given year by consulting this chart.
|Four Mile Creek||37,000||37,000||34,000||37,000||37,000||18,300||19,620|
|Presque Isle Bay||87,378||83,250||83,250||82,250||83,350||83,350||88,292|
|Seven Mile Creek||37,000||37,000||37,000||37,000||37,000||18,300||19,620|
|Sixteen Mile Creek||18,500||18,500||18,500||18,500||18,500||18,300||19,618|
|Twelve Mile Creek||37,000||37,000||37,000||37,000||37,000||36,600||39,240|
|Twenty Mile Creek||111,001||111,000||111,000||111,000||111,000||146,400||156,959|
Not included above are 2015 stockings that take place after the spring stockings
Special thank you to PA, NY, OH, MI Fishery Biologists for the information posted in this chart.
Research has revealed that 95% of the stocked smolts don’t live long enough to mature and run a tributary. Predatory ducks - birds - fish and other critters make a meal of that precious resource. Anglers who are spring steelhead fishing kill countless numbers too no matter how careful they remove the hook. Those are the facts.
Increased fishing pressure and the preference to catch and keep steelhead are impacting the annual run too.
The 5% of the stocked steelhead smolts that manage to mature will be your target this fall along with those trophy-class fish that are “return runners”!
Now you can run the numbers and form your own opinion for what to expect on your favorite tributary.
Finally, don’t get your Orvis waders in a knot when you see a “drag and brag” angler sliding a rope of fish across the parking lot. Erie’s steelhead program is a “put & take” fishery. Just let is go brother/sister. Life is too short.
July 22, 2015
To be beneficial, a steelhead fishing website should inform, instruct, and inspire the reader. Your level of experience will determine what to read and what to overlook. If fishing puts a smile on your face, then read-on!
Most anglers who visit this Fish Steelhead Alley Website have fished Erie, caught steelhead and know most of the “where, how and with what” that makes for a successful trip. The challenge for creating a good Website is a presentation that satisfies all experience levels.
A chronologically ordered, blog with plenty of embedded links and a standard search option should do the trick. That basic format will make the home page – landing page a starting point for all readers. You can review the dated report on the home page and click on the embedded links that suit your experience level or you can use the search function to find a topic of interest to you.
When the “new Fish Steelhead Alley Website” launches, you are encouraged to bookmark the page and visit it often. Content changes and additions are coming soon. First, planned topic will be of interest to all steelhead anglers – 2016 smolt stocking program!
The summer months offer plenty of fishing opportunities no matter where you live in the Great Lakes Region. Anglers at this time of the year, turn their attention to lake, bay and pier fishing. Target species are bass, perch and walleye. Largemouth and smallmouth bass fishing gain popularity at this time of the year because just about all bodies of water hold bass. You can add pan-fish, pike [pickerel, northern, musky], catfish, and a variety of junk-fish as well. [Thanks to Tom Cimino for these images.] Now if the time, weather permitting, to get your boat on the lake. If you do not have access to a boat I have two suggestions to make the most of your summer fishing. You can charter a walleye trip or plan to spend a day on a perch fishing head boat. I trust during the summer you will keep your fishing skills sharp. Fall will soon be here and the steelhead will be staging just off-shore.