LOCATION: Ashokan Reservoir, NJ
SMALLMOUTH BASS FISHING TRIP
Air Temp: Average 82 degrees
Weather: Bright sunny day with clouds
Water Temp: Average 71.0
Fish Targeted: Smallmouth Bass
Water Quality: Clear
Lures: No live bait was used, all fish were caught and released on artificial bait... Gator Lures, Soft Plastics
Rods: 7.3 fast tip medium light spinning rods.
Reels: Spinning Reels
Line: 6 lb to 8 lb mono
The Gator lure has been around since 1976 in many different sizes, styles and weights. We provide a link to Gator's website below should you wish to purchase one of these super lures.
Ashokan Reservoir is our favorite Smallmouth destination between the months of May and June. It's a TOUGH hike (walk) to this water but the results are usually worth the effort.
We were anxious to try the selection of Gator Lures sent to us on this reservoir to see how effective they would be. We knew from past experience that metal of any type has never been very successful with the Smallmouth we target here. We have TRIED many, many times with loads of different metal lures here so our expectations of catching the numbers of fish we are accustomed to with the Gator was tempered by this knowledge.
The Gator 1/4 oz Mr. Red Hammered Spoon proved to us that some metal DOES indeed catch fish here!! We were pleastantly SURPRISED at the NUMBERS we caught with it too... We concentrated on the shoreline along the Southern edge of the reservoir and caught no less then 12 plus fish each during a two hour period on this segment of water.
Check out some really nice images of the fish we caught using the Gator Mr Red. And take a look at the Blue Fish action we caught in the Lower NY Bay with the Gator Silver Spoon too ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w5l3wBKv00Q
All of our trips to this wonderful body of water has always been to showcase the Smallmouth Bass here and the lures we used to fish for them. But recently, we received some great advice from Joe Custy (he lives and guides here) about the super sized Largemouth Bass this reservoir holds and how he catches them from SHORE!!
Here is a note he sent us today Dec. 16, 2014 that you have to read.. and be sure you check out his website too!
I have lived in Shokan NY for almost 8 years and it took some time to make the connection between the Ashokan Reservoir and the California reservoirs where largemouth feed heavily on trout. I believe what happens in the Ashokan is that there is a prime opportunity for largemouth to make the transition from feeding on alewives, perch, shiners, crappie, etc to feeding on trout. I’m not sure of the details but what I can say with certainty is that the big largemouth eat big food. About 3 weeks ago (on the Ashokan) I caught my first “swimbait” largemouth on a SPRO BBZ-1 rainbow trout swimbait. This bait is 8” long and weighs about 4.5 oz. The largemouth was not too big…between 4 and 5 lbs which is “medium size” for the Ashokan. Not sure if you are familiar with these baits but they are fun to use. Not many fish but what you catch will be quality. If you want to gain some insight into swimbait fishing purchase the DVD “Southern Trout Eaters” from Tackle Warehouse. It has quit a bit of coverage on catching big largemouth on these huge baits.
You will catch many more smallmouth than largemouth on the Ashokan but there are days when I will catch 5 largemouth one after another. On the Ashokan, my biggest largemouth is slightly over 9 lbs and my biggest smallmouth is just under 5 lb. On the Ashokan I have caught about 6 or 7 largemouth between 6 and 7.5 lbs since I moved here.
My website is a work in progress but here is a link in case you are nterested. http://www.shoretrek.com Check out the link to my paper on the #18F Rapala. This is a sleeper bait you don’t see many guys throwing…but having grown up bass fishing I remember reading about this technique in Bassmaster magazine well over 20 years ago. One more thing. No boat required. Almost 100% of my fish are caught from shore. For me, the trick seems to be the cold water.
Good fishing! Joe