I decided to not go fishing on the Fourth of July, but rather just take a leisurely ride around the local lakes and see how crowded they were.
It wasn’t a surprise to see that Round Lake and Ballston Lake were busy, but the Saratoga Lake state launch site and the lake were the busiest. There were six vehicles with trailers waiting for someone to leave, and the majority of boat trailers were bass boats.
Saratoga Tackle reported everything was biting. However, one week earlier, I got an email from some happy grandparents who wanted to let me know about their granddaughter’s first fish.
Fred and Suzanne Denefrio of Niskayuna took their 31⁄2-year-old granddaughter, Juliana Denefrio, to Saratoga Lake. They rented a boat at South Shore Marina and started fishing the weed patches out in front of the Marina’s launch. This southern area of the lake is an excellent summer spot for panfishing, as well as bass. Her fish came aboard early, and she did quite a job of reeling it in, a nice sized bluegill. In two hours, they caught quite a few sunfish and a couple of bass. I’m sure Saratoga Lake will see them again.
I’m often asked why I put so many details in my fishing reports. As a fisherman, you should know there are a number of things that can make the difference between fishing and catching, including weather, time of day, structure, lure type, size and color, depth, etc.
I learned a long time ago that you never know everything about fishing, and I always try to pry out all the information I can from a successful angler. Unfortunately, anglers, not all of them, have a tendency to stretch the truth and sometimes even lie. But when a tournament angler tells me he caught a lot of fish on a pink Bass Pro Shop Stik-O-Worm, I buy some.
Just before the Fourth of July holiday, I accepted a fishing invitation from my friend, Paul Galcik of Schuylerville, to join him on Glen Lake. This 319-acre lake in the Warren County town of Queensbury has quite a selection of fish, including large and smallmouth bass, chain pickerel, brown bullhead, panfish and rainbow trout. This year, the Department of Environmental Conservation added 2,600 of them.
It was a perfect fishing day with overcast skies and very little wind when we left the dock around 7:30 a.m., and before 8, Paul had attracted a largemouth that grabbed his surface popper. Numbers two and three also came into the boat on that same lure, but I was too stubborn to switch and continued to toss a green wacky worm. Within the next hour and a half, Paul caught three fish to every one of mine, including two pickerel. Most of the fish we were catching were largemouth five to 20 feet deep and always around weeds and rocks.
Now because of the overcast, I thought I would try something different, in color, that is. I had a half-dozen pink Stik-O-Worms I’d been carrying around for some time. To my surprise, that pink wacky worm was hot. I caught quite a few bass and several pickerel before the day ended. One pickerel measured 25 inches and weighed in close to four pounds. It was a great day of fishing with plenty of action, and when I got home, I called Bass Pro Shops and ordered some pink Stik-O-Worms.
Glen Lake has a very small launch for cartop boats (no trailers), and very limited parking. For full launching details, go to www.-ecode360.com/9616636
Oneida Lake was good to the 12 teams that fished the Mohawk Valley Anglers Club recently. Eleven of these teams weighed in five-bass limits.
Leading the way with a 15.40-pound bag of bass were John D. and John R. Irons of Little Falls, for which they received $175. The Schenectady team of Jim Capron and Bob Cooper, was just one pound behind with 14.40 in second, and the Westerlo team of Bill Kested and Bob Misuraca was third with 14.25 pounds. Second and third place received $125 and $100, respectively. Big bass honors and $60 went to Rotterdam anglers Ken Fredericks and Leon Vanwormer, who weighed in a 3.77-pounder.
The 23 boats that fished in the Tuesday afternoon Saratoga Tackle Bass Challenge were interrupted by a very nasty thunder and lightning storm, forcing most of them off the water temporarily. Any fishing time lost in a three-hour tournament makes a team five-bass limit a real challenge, but they still did well.
The leader, who fished alone, was Bill Goodermote of Troy with a five-fish bag weighing 11.80 pounds. He received $518. Second, with 11.58 pounds, were Saratoga Springs anglers Mike Schiecher and Tony Pascucci, who received $207. Their bag also included the tournament lunker, a 4.34-largemouth worth an additional $230.
There was also a newcomer fishing his first bass tournament, Zack Galcik of Schuylerville, who partnered with his dad, Mike. You might remember I was Mike’s partner the week before, and we won the tournament without any help from me. Zack was a bit hesitant when he came over to me and said, “I caught the first fish and another later.” From the smirk on his dad’s face, I do believe he put him up to it.
Dave’s Bait and Tackle reports the walleye bite is good in spite of the high water, and they are catching them right from shore. Apparently, the bait moved in toward the shore and the ’eyes followed. Dave said the pike fishing is slow and nothing big has been biting. However, one unidentified angler caught a 28-inch brown trout fishing from shore.
The June winners in Dave’s monthly contest caught some nice fish. In the walleye category, the winner was Bill Harrington of Northville, 221⁄4 inches. Luke Olsen of Northville took both second and third places with 201⁄2- and 20-inch ’eyes.
There were only two winners in the perch division; Dan Looman of Edinburg, 135⁄8 inches, and Ron Smith of Catskill, 121⁄4.
In the white perch category, Catskill angler Ron Smith won with a 12-incher. Keith Simonds of Gloversville took second and third with 111⁄4 and 101⁄2 inches.
Only one bass was weighed in, and that was Smith again with a 17-incher.