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New Jersey Freshwater Fishing Report 1-30-19

<b>NEW YORK</b>

<b>Adirondack Mountains</b>

Weather was going to be cold today and the next couple of days, said Renee from <b>FISH307.com</b> in Lake George. A daytime high of 17 degrees on Thursday is supposed to be the coldest in the next days, and Lake George was fished all over from the ice, but mostly on bays. The ice was about 7 inches thick on the bays, and yellow perch, lake trout and landlocked salmon were tugged in from George. George is a big, deep lake that’s the final to freeze each winter in the Adirondacks. Pretty much all other lakes were fished in the mountains from the ice, too. All ice-fishing baits except mousies are stocked. Mousies are scarce this year. The baits currently included medium, heavy and pike shiners, big golden shiners, hunts, big and small suckers, icicles, grubs, nightcrawlers, meal worms, roe and more. <a href="http://www.fish307.com" target="_blank"> FISH307.com</a> is both an online store and a brick-and-mortar one. It’s the Ice Fishing Super Store, located near the south entrance to the Adirondacks.

Ernie from <b>Fuel-n-Food</b> in Mayfield axed a good number of walleyes from the ice on Great Sacandaga Lake on a trip 2 ½ weeks ago near Cranberry Cove, he said. His buddy also pulled in a 22-inch brown trout during the outing, and the ice was 10 inches thick. The fishing was good, and Ernie expects the angling to continue to be. He plans to fish the lake on the ice again Friday, and weather is forecast to be especially cold around then. He got into yellow perch and some chain pickerel at West Caroga Lake from the ice, a lot of action. Many pickerel swim that lake. A month ago, he scored lake trout, not a lot of keepers, but a couple legal-sized among throwbacks, perch and rock bass at Canada Lake. Baits stocked include hunts, suckers, medium shiners and large shiners. Fuel-n-Food is a gas station and café, and stocks a full selection of ice-fishing gear. The crew from the store can point you in the right direction for the fishing.

<b>Salmon River and Western New York Streams</b>

Salmon River had flowed at 285 cubic feet per second, was bumped up to 300 or 310 and “is fishing,” said Jay Peck from <b>Jay Peck Guide Service</b>. The river is giving up steelheads that are stacked up from the upper river to mid-river. Plenty of the fish are holding there, and weather and ice will be some of the biggest factors this time of year. Sometimes slush filled the water. That wasn’t bad yesterday, a relatively warm day. But the next days are supposed to be cold. He expects to tie flies then, “fill the box weather,” he said, fill the fly box. The Douglaston run was iced up halfway through. He and his guides are landing the steelheads mostly on stoneflies. That should continue to be the pattern until a pulse of water changes the water level. Rivers and streams that Jay had been fishing for brown trout, big ones, farther west in New York, near Rochester, were mostly frozen. Those are smaller waters, and Salmon River is a bigger river that never completely freezes. Jay each winter stops fishing for the browns during the freeze, and returns to that angling during the thaw in late winter. Ice-fishing began to kick in locally at places like Sodus Bay. Lots of yellow perch fishing began to happen from the ice. Jay specializes in fly-fishing and catch-and-release, and books trips that fish with conventional tackle with his other guides.


Ice was fished on lakes locally, and conditions were sketchy since lots of rain last Thursday, said Andy from <b>Stokes Forest Sport Shop</b> in Sandyston. An angler fell through ice on the edge of a lake yesterday. Getting onto lakes was difficult. The next two nights are supposed to dip below zero degrees, and that should help. Public lakes that customers fish from the ice include Ocquittunk, Stony, Ashroe and Swartswood. Andy heard about Little Swartswood fished from the ice, but not the big Swartswood. Quick Pond is also public and fished from the ice. Private lakes customers fish from the ice include Culver, Owassa, Kittatiny and Crandon. Delaware River ran very high, so no fishing took place there. Big Flatbrook also ran high since Thursday’s rain. Nobody fished for trout on the Flatbrook because of that.

Ice anglers fished Lake Hopatcong and Lake Musconetcong, said Kevin from <b>Ramsey Outdoor</b> in Succasunna. Some really big yellow perch and some big crappies were plucked from Musconetcong, mostly on jigged Kastmasters. Spikes and wax worms were fished for bait and are stocked. Mousies are difficult to obtain from suppliers this year. Kevin saw a photo of a musky from Hopatcong on Instagram that was a skinny 30-incher. Nothing was heard about trout fishing on streams. Weather was a little chilly and the water was a little high to hear much about that, probably.

Lake Hopatcong turned out good ice-fishing for yellow perch and bluegills, said Keith form <b>Hi-Way Sports Shop</b> in Washington. He knew that the fish were grabbed near the state park on jigs tipped with wax worms. He and his dad fished a private pond from the ice yesterday, nailing 45 fish: largemouth bass, bluegills, crappies and perch. That was on Mighty Mouse Jigs tipped with wax worms. Was good fishing, and is a good spot. The ice was 6 inches, and the pond is deep with springs. So other lakes like Oxford might hold thicker ice. Oxford gave up catfish and muskies on shiners on tip-ups. Customers also fished the ice at Mountain Lake, and Keith didn’t know results, but the lake was frozen. No fishing on rivers or streams really happened. But if you fish for trout on rivers and streams, the usual worms, PowerBait and salmon eggs will catch. The cold forecast for the next days might keep anglers from the trout fishing, though. But all usual lakes will probably be fished from the ice because of the cold. Fathead minnows, large and medium shiners, wax worms, nightcrawlers and meal worms are stocked.

Most of the lake’s coves were covered with 7 inches of ice, Laurie from <b>Dow’s Boat Rentals</b> in Lake Hopatcong wrote in an email. So did the lake off the state park. The main lake was only skimmed over and held some open water. Jeremy Hughens whaled and released a 45-inch musky from the ice. Catches from the ice seen at the shop included Max Hughens’ 4-pound 4-ounce chain pickerel, Sean Donnelly’s 3-pound 6-ounce pickerel from Great Cove, Bryan Higgins’ 1-pound 10-ounce crappie and Pete Pellegrino’s 1-pound 2-ounce yellow perch. The Knee Deep Club will hold an ice-fishing contest on Sunday, Feb. 10, at the lake. More info is available on the club’s website, or you can telephone the store for that. The shop is open daily and stocked for ice-fishing. Be safe on the ice, Laurie said.

Customers looked for ice to fish on lakes, though few reports were heard about the angling, said Larry from <b>Fairfield Fishing Tackle</b> in Pine Brook. One customer reported good ice-fishing for crappies at a lake in Andover last week. Passaic River near the store rain fairly high because of rain. On saltwater, trips boated blackfish now and then.

Chain pickerel and crappies can always be nabbed from lakes in winter, said Dennis from <b>Hook House Bait & Tackle</b> in Toms River. They’re active in cold water, unlike some fish. A token customer headed for trout, a cold-water fish. Killies, nightcrawlers and garden worms are stocked. The store is open for no set hours this time of year, but if Dennis’s truck is in the parking lot, the shop is open. Often the hours are posted on <a href="https://www.facebook.com/hookhouse/" target="_blank">the shop’s Facebook page</a>. Sometimes sale items are posted there, too. The store’s been participating in fishing flea markets. Hook House, located on Route 37, also owns <b>Go Fish Bait & Tackle</b> on Fischer Boulevard in Toms River.

Pickerel were about the only fish caught from lakes, said Mike from <b>Sportsman’s Outpost</b> in Williamstown. They were fought from Franklinville Lake. Fish a large Roostertail or big Mepps spinner. No trout fishing was heard about, though trout fishing might be expected to be reported from waters included in trout stocking in past months Last week, skim ice but some open water covered lakes. Weather was becoming colder now.

Ice covered lakes sometimes and didn’t at other times this past week, said Steve from <b>Blackwater Sports Center</b> in Vineland.  But usually ice did cover them, and weather was becoming colder now. News was scarce about fishing. Anglers kind of waited for warmer weather. Saltwater news was scarce, too. Boats that had been blackfishing on the ocean mostly seemed to stop sailing for the season.

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