Lake Ontario – The hottest action out deep had been for steelhead off Wilson and Olcott. Boats have been heading out to 400-500 feet of water for salmon and trout, but mosts of the fish have been nice steelhead taken on spoons. Flasher-fly will work for trout but if there are kings and cohos around, those seem to be the best baits to use. The DW 42nd spoon keeps popping up for one popular bait; for spinnies, white on white, white 2 face, and chrome green dot flashers with stud fly, purple or lime mirage fly have worked best, but other colors are working, too. A few salmon have started to make it in closer to shore, but the best and most consistent fishing has been out deep. The Niagara Bar is producing some nice fish, as well. John Van Hoff of North Tonawanda was out last weekend and did well with flasher-fly 90 feet down over 100 feet of water right at the drop off. He caught a dozen nice kings to 25 pounds. Out of Wilson, Capt. Mike Johannes has been reporting fish about 8 miles out, but fish are also available in the 100 to 200 foot depth range. Spoons and flasher-fly, what’s been working elsewhere, has been the hot bite. Meat will also work for kings as we move closer to the time when salmon will be making their way in to the ports they were stocked at.
The Orleans County Rotary Derby has been plugging along slowly the past week. Mike Schaeffer of Sligo, Pa. is leading the grand prize quest with a 28 pound, 6 ounce salmon out of the Oak. In the Salmon Division, Chase Lamb of Burt is in first place with an Olcott king that weighed 23 pounds, 15 ounces. The contest runs through August 20th, which helps set up for one of the busiest weekends of the year as far as the fishing scene is concerned. First, the Fall Lake Ontario Counties Trout and Salmon Derby kicks off on August 18 and runs through Labor Day. Also on August 18, the Second Annual Reelin’ for a Cure will be held out of Wilson and Olcott from 6 a.m. to noon. This all-ladies event will be raising funds for the Breast Cancer Network of WNY. Last year there were 12 teams. This year it looks like it has more than doubled! They need boats – charter boats and rec boats – to make it all happen. It’s a fun time for sure. Contact Stephanie Pierleoni at 481-6388 for more information or go on the event’s Facebook page. The final contest that starts up next weekend is the Greater Niagara Fish Odyssey Derby, set for August 19th to the 27th. Six species categories for the adults and a Grand Prize of $3,000. For the kids, it’s free to enter with loads of merchandise prizes and trophies. Sign up at any of the LOC weigh stations or at www.fishodyssey.net. This is for Niagara, Orleans and Erie counties. Many thanks to Jim and Karen Evarts at The Boat Doctors in Olcott who do a lion’s share of the work behind the scenes, such as the website and the leaderboard. This is a great way to get the whole family out to enjoy the waters of Western New York.
Niagara River action, both above and below Niagara Falls, has been dominated by bass, but the walleye fishing can be pretty good, too. Bass are liking crayfish and shiners, in that order. Walleye are liking worm harnesses and other spinner-worm combinations. Yellow sally rigs are a local favorite in the lower river. Mike Fox of Lewiston led one lucky fisherman into catching the biggest bass in the Independent Living bass contest last Sunday, a 5.5 pound smallmouth that hit a crayfish on the Stella Drift, right in front of his house! Captain Ernie Calandrelli of Lewiston also hit the top walleye on the same drift, using the same bait as Fox – a softshell crab.
Courtesy of Niagara Falls USA by Bill Hilts Jr.