Friday, November 30, 2007

2008 Ohio Trout Lottery

It's that time of year again for anglers to send in their application for the 2008 Ohio Trout Lottery. This lottery is hosted by the Department of Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Wildlife and gives anglers an opportunity to fish a controlled section of Ohio's Cold Creek - A half-mile section of the creek, located at the Castalia State Fish Hatchery in Erie County.

However this angling opportunity is limited to a certain number of anglers and selected dates between March 31 and October 31st in 2008. Lucky anglers will be chosen through a special lottery.

Anglers interested in fishing the stream must submit an application form and a non-refundable $5 application fee to the Division of Wildlife, 2054 Morse Rd, G-1, Columbus, Ohio 43229-6693 between December 1, 2007 and January 31, 2008 in order to be eligible for the random drawing. The online application fee is $3.

For more information about the 2008 Ohio Trout Lottery, click here.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Speckled Trout Fishing in Mississippi Improving

Fall has always been one of the best times of the year for trout fishing. And Thanksgiving weekend brought a cold front across much of the country - which caused trout fishing action heat up even more!

Speckled trout fishing in Southern Mississippi continues to improve thanks to this recent cold front. Below is the fishing report recently published in the Sun Herald.

As water temperatures plunged below 70 degrees, speckled trout and redfish are searching for bait from Moss Point to Bay St. Louis with the majority of the action taking place around deep drop-offs and bends in the rivers.

The only holdback has been dealing with the effects of rainfall - before Thanksgiving and after. In some places, the smaller bodies of water will be murky.

When this happens, look for cleaner water in the main rivers and bays that cycle muddy water out quicker with low and high tides.

With that in mind, places like the old Kremer Marina in Gulfport and Biloxi's Big Lake should be good.

In Hancock County, fishing remains solid off the Jourdan River near I-10 and back south toward the Bay of St. Louis for trout. In Harrison County, Bernard Bayou, Parker's Creek and the Industrial Seaway should have trout.

The Pascagoula River, Mary Walker Bayou, Sioux Bayou and the Singing River have been solid all the way from the interstate south to Northrop Grumman.

Other top spots in Jackson County are Fort Bayou - just east of the bridge on Washington Avenue - and the mouth of Graveline Bayou.

Two of the top baits for Graveline are live croakers and small minnows suspended underneath a popping cork.

Live shrimp should be available at bait shops through the end of the year. Small pogies and finger-size mullet are plentiful in the bays and rivers for those anglers using brill nets.

Slow-trolling using plastic jigs and slow-sinking lures will become more productive in December.

To read the entire fishing report which also covers redfish fishing, click here.

For more speckled trout fishing tips, click here.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Heritage Pond Stocked with Trout

Heritage Pond on the north side of Dubuque was scheduled for stocking yesterday. It's the first of three stockings scheduled. More than 1,500 catchable size rainbow trout were planted in the first stocking.

These stockings are part of an initiative by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to provide trout fishing opportunities through the Thanksgiving holiday.

More stockings are planned for January and March.

For more information about trout fishing in Iowa, click here.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Fall Trout Fishing in Arizona

Fall trout fishing continues to be excellent in Arizona. I've been taking my nephews, their friends, and others out fishing at Lynx Lake a lot this season. My youngest nephew is 5 now and old enough to really enjoy trout fishing on his little Jack Sparrow fishing pole.

Since Fall is one of the best times of the year to be out trout fishing, now is a good time to take the kids out for a day of fishing! It's a lot easier to keep kids focused on trout fishing when they're catching trout.

Here are some photos from some of this year's Fall trout fishing excursions.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Trout Fishing Opens on Madison County Lake Next Friday

Madison County Lake (near Huntsville, Alabama) will open for trout fishing the day after Thanksgiving.

Anglers ages 16-64 must have a valid Alabama fishing license and a daily lake permit - both of which can be purchased at the lake store. Bait and rental equipment also are available at the lake store. The lake is open on weekends until Feb. 1 from daylight to dark.

Stockings will be a bit different different this year. The lake will get its usual 3,000 pounds of trout from a Georgia hatchery, but this year there will be several smaller stockings instead of three large ones. This should give anglers more opportunities to catch trout over the whole season.

For more information about trout fishing on Madison County Lake, click here.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Trout Fishing Tip #2 - Watch Where Trout are Rising

It may seem obvious, but you'd be surprised how many people will sit there watching trout rise or jump out of the water for insects and never move try and cast their line into that spot.

Figuring out where trout are hanging out is half the battle. But once you do figure it out, you can improve your chances of catching them by casting your line into that spot. Trout are lazy fish - they don't want to work hard for a meal. So if you present your offering to them, you have a better chance of getting them to take it.

But watching trout rise (or jump) is important for another reason. In addition to telling you where trout are - it also tells you that they're feeding near the surface of the water. And if you're lake fishing - this information is especially important!

Lakes are usually deep and so there are different feeding zones. As the day progresses, trout may change feeding zones. When you see them rising (or jumping), you know they're actively feeding near the water's surface - so you'll want to keep your bait near or close to the surface of the water (in other words, you don't want to be bottom fishing deep in the lake when trout aren't there).

Watching trout rise is another of those telltale signs that gives you a couple of bits of information which can in turn help you choose the right fishing technique.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Trout Fishing Tip #1 - Watch the Birds!

Osprey Trout FishingOne of the biggest keys to successful trout fishing is being observant. There are usually telltale signs around you that will give you an advantage of how and where to catch trout.

Watching the birds is one of these telltale signs. Birds have an uncanny ability to spot trout in the water from the air! If you pay attention to the section of water they're flying over and where they're swooping down to grab fish, you'll know where the trout are!

And if you know where the trout are hanging out, you'll have a better chance of catching them!

You'll notice in the image above, that this Osprey has a trout in his claws. I took this picture a few weeks ago at my while I was fishing at Lynx Lake. I watched as he swooped down and grabbed the trout from the lake. By being observant, I was able to stay in touch with where the trout were hanging out in the lake that day and make sure our kids took home their bag limit.

Watching the birds (as well as the rest of your environment) is important when trout fishing. Being observant of these little telltale signs will make you a better trout angler!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Brook Trout Fishing Secrets

Brook trout are fall spawners so many trout anglers consider this to be the best time to catch them. And since brook trout need cool, clean streams in order to spawn, you can often find them in making their way into tributaries this time of year.

Like other trout species, brook trout like to hang out near boulders, logs and other structures that provide cover and security. They feed on worms, grasshoppers, and other insects.

When fishing in lakes, try trolling near shore with worms or spinners tipped with worms. Salmon eggs, Wooly Buggers, and dark colored nymphs are also effective. Corn is also effective on hatchery brook trout.

Artificial flies are also work well when fishing for brook trout – especially dry flies, streamers and nymphs that imitate natural food sources.

Keep in mind that of all the trout species, brook trout are usually pretty small and if fishing in streams or small rivers, you’ll need to use light tackle (2-4 lb test). In lakes, you can usually get away with using 4-6 lb test line.

Although most brook trout are pretty small, there have been some amazing trophy-size brookies caught. In 2006, an angler in Manitoba caught a 29 inch brookie. Although this catch would have most likely given him the world record, he released it after snapping a few photographs - thereby eliminating his chance of a world record. However, in 2007, the National Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame awarded this angler a catch and release record.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Struggling to Catch Trout - Try Trout Attractant!

Often times when I'm trout fishing my favorite lake, I'll spend the day reeling trout after trout while others around struggle to hook one. We may even be using the techniques (shore fishing with powerbait on a sinker) ... yet I'll catch trout, and they won't.

Sound familiar? Here's one of my trout tips for you ...

What these folks often don't know is that I'm also using trout attractant - which can sometime mean the difference between a good day at the lake and a bad one.

Like it or not, we have a human smell. And this human smell is often transferred to your line and bait as you handle them. If you're a smoker, it can be even worse. One of the ways to fix this problem is to put a dab of trout attractant on your leader and bait.

You can buy the stuff in any sporting goods store (even in Wal-mart). Attractant is specially designed for different types of fish (trout, bass, game fish, etc.). You'll either want the trout formula or the one for live game fish.

Although you can "spray" this stuff on your bait, I like to remove the cap and use the tube attached to the lid to wipe attractant on my leader and bait (sometimes, I'll even dip my bait into the bottle).

Trout attractant gives your offering a bit of edge over other angler's. If you're struggling to catch trout, you might want to pick up a bottle and give it a try!