Night Eyes

AtticaFish

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It's that time again! Only been out a few times so far because the water temps are not really coming down all that much yet. Lots of reports from other lakes south and east of me, but not much locally. Have been getting really nice bass on previous trips, but no walleye... till tonight! Found an 18" walleye using a green back/white belly 3/16th oz. doll fly.

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The bass have been more than willing to bite. Could have had a decent bag of fish for a bass tourney last night. Landed 5 with 4 of them 18" and up! Biggest went 21". Missed several other hits and lost another that was hooked up for a little bit but spit the hook. 1 on an X-Rap, 2 on black twister grubs/jigs and 2 on doll flies. Pretty fun night, hopefully get out again soon.

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Kdog

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Sounds like a good night. Some good eats there.

Yesterday, was a good fishing day, hit the water at 8am, had our 2 man 12 walleye limit before noon all were caught 30 - 32 FOW on jigging raps, water was 61 degrees, wind started from south east and after a calm period came from north east. Bite never changed. A buddy and his GF were leaving and took our fish home and put on ice (They zero'd after fishing for 6 hours and he refuses to fish the area we fish. He says too many snags and too few fish! ) for us so we could keep fishing. Before anyone starts thinking poorly, we do not keep fish at lake minimum, were keep 18" - 22" eyes and everything else gets turned back if we think it will live. BTW we only lost 1 jigging rap and it was because I did not pay attention and got it hung in a fence row that we have located via gps and even have a fence post driven in at the bank so we know where the fence is. So if you are fishing and see a day glow orange post at the water line, get your bait out of the water.

Decided to do some scouting and picked up 9 more eyes in 4-6 FOW on jigs and crawlers, doll flys and some crazy concoctions I am working on. Find good solid structure near the bank, seems like they are holding and feeding there as well.

Left at 2pm total for the day, 71 walleye, 14 white bass, 2 bluegill, 9 crappie and 1 monster whisker fish ~35" long and 3 big 6-8" shad and 1 yellow perch ~10".

Started light rain early this AM so obviously the front is moving in. Just wish I could correlate the barometer with best fishing times. Early report today they had 9 keepers in 3 hours so bite is still strong. Occasional misty rain, air temp dropping almost 10 degrees is last 5 hours. Fall bite is coming, 7 degree colder water is what I am waiting for.
 

AtticaFish

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Kdog - The city water upground reservoirs i fish are tough to get consistent numbers from. Very little distinguishable structure to hold fish and then they scatter when the wind shifts. Hard pressed to ever catch the walleye during daylight hours. There is a guy i've been talking with a few towns over that has had a really slow start to late night fall fishing on his lakes too. OGF forum talk makes it sound like the bite at Erie piers is getting in full swing. You sure have found the fish. That size range is about ideal for eating. Pretty amazing numbers!

Hawnjigs - The week before, i caught a 22" LMB. Numbers and size are crazy at this lake and very few target them. Have been told the electric motor only regulation keeps all the serious bass fisherman away, but you can catch these beasts with no boat! Very rarely do i keep LMB. I keep a small one here and there through the ice, but make sure to soak them in milk or salt water. Pretty much always fry them as well, they have a much stronger flavor. Also will keep them if they are gut hooked and think they are not going to make it so they are not wasted.
 

AtticaFish

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Got out again tonight in the whipping 20 mph wind and cool 45° temps. Hot damn, got me a 23" walleye!

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Caught it on a 1/8th football jighead with a nice heavy hook JungleJim poured form me. He poured them for me maybe 2 or 3 years ago and have had a small pile used here and there out of my box since. Had a 5" Kalin's grub on the jig in the Northern Bluegill color. I threw some other tied jigs and stick bait, but this was my only bite for the night. Sure do love it when a single filleted fish fills up a quart bag all by itself. :icon14:
 

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AtticaFish

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WaaaHoo! Got another! Made it out tonight for 2 hours and hooked the biggest walleye i've caught outside of Lake Erie. Another fat female full of eggs measuring 27". Score with my own version of the doll fly too. :jig: Caught it on a 3/16 jig tied with white/chart/blue craft hair and a big FAT under body of wool roving. Lost it to the rocks about 10 minutes after i caught the fish and decided to give it up for the night. Sure love fishing these Fat-D-Flies. :D

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Hawnjigs

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Woohoo! Nice to know your local res has big girls, eh? And yer prob all by your lonely, I hit the Mac at 3 AM in season, and sometimes its still hard to squeeze into a stay in one spot cast straight out stand.

OK, maybe you'll get a state record before bounce water sets in.

Are the roundish "filets" from the ribs?
 

AtticaFish

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Hawnjigs - Yep, don't think there was another person on the whole reservoir and it was a beautiful evening. Not much wind and pretty mild temps. Was debating on driving up to Erie and giving it a try, but then my Dad sent me a picture from the pier at dusk and there were already a dozen guys out casting. This reservoir sure has the potential for large fish, both walleye and bass. Maybe only drawback is there are no shiners or shad as a forage, the predators target the panfish and crawfish.

The round chunks are the cheeks. Tastiest cut of meat on the walleye! Completely different texture to the meat.
 

Hawnjigs

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Dude, you got a private secret spot !

Since the Mac has NO significant observable crawdad or panfish pops using for cover or habitat, bottom structure is meaningless. Silvery baitfish tend to be migratory over vast areas so predator opportunity can be feast or famine, and the dam has been zero for the past 4 months and counting. Your pannies and dads forage might be a major reason why you've got TROPHY potential wallys & bass in close.

Lucky guy...
 

Hawnjigs

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BTW, AF, watch what you wish for - my first trip to the Mac in 2011 there was a noticeable population of daytime visible dink gills and/or sunnies in the rocks of the dam. They appear to be completely gone now, and biologists speculate the far more proliferate shad out competed them for the same food source + ATE THE EGGS. Which is why advice from a former resident of the area that the dam would have good fishing all Summer didn't "pan" out.
 

AtticaFish

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Huh, surprised to hear such a major shift in prey so quickly. Erie has seen some of a shift with the introduction of gobies, but not quite so extreme. Smallmouth bass fisherman on Erie have exploited that shift, the smallies really love the goby snacks.

Surprisingly, the walleye i have caught so far have had very little if anything in their stomachs. Last one i got did have some pretty small panfish (hard to tell if bluegill or perch) of only about 1.5" long in its gut.

Since i lost the only one i had at the time of the particular color combo..... i have tied a few since. White/chart/blue. The others are just some i played with. Total size of the finished bait is close to 5" with the flash extending out past the hair. It really kicks around when it is out there trailing behind. Head weight is 3/16.

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