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With no migrating stripers showing up in our waters yet, I decided to go out and play with the small resident fish as the water temps have dropped a bit and it was the last nice day I had to fish before company coming down later today and the rains on Sunday.
Not the best time of the day or the best tide. Tide was only going to be up 4.4 feet and High was at 2:02. While waiting for fly fishing friend from Ocean City to drive down, I took a few casts around the dock and caught a small striper using sinking line and a clouser.
When Steve arrived we decided to head out to the ocean to fish. Water was fairly clean and the wind had started to pick up from the south. The water was about 63.5 degrees. No signs of any birds or baitfish any where so we just worked structure. I had one hit which I missed and Steve got a small bass using a clouser on sinking line.
With the wind kicking up more we decided to go to the back bay and work some creeks mouths etc. Water appeared to never get as high as it should of as we could see mud of the sod banks between the water and the top of the sod bank at the top of the tide and when the tide started out all the creeks had a very weak flow. We worked a number of creek mouths and decided to run up one creek that at its deepest was about 5 feet. We worked it up stream till we were in 2 feet of water. In this creek we caught 3 bass and a small bluefish with one needle fish that chased a fly but didn't hit.
Figuring we worked up that creek as far as we could. We came out and worked a small rip line off of a sod bank where the water was 5 to 3 feet deep and we picked up three more small stripers and headed back to the dock at 4:30 pm.
It was a pretty decent day in three hours we caught 7 bass in the boat and I had the one off the dock. By todays standards that what I call a good day. Right now the big question is if and when will we start to seen migrating stripers down here. The odds makes have it being after Thanks Giving.
When I headed to North Carolina last week I had the boat pulled to get the carburetors rebuilt as the ethanol had taken their toll on the plastic bowls and the engine was just not preforming well and had some hesitation and choppy acceleration. Went out last night to check out the engine and it was like have a new motor and it felt good to be back to normal.
Wish the fishing was normal. A buddy and I headed out the inlet. Water was 64 to 65 degrees and very ugly brown. (don't know why) Visibility was really poor and there were little to no signs of any life. We worked the rocks, the beach and never got a single hit in an hour and a half.
Moved to the back. Water there was 64 to 65 degrees. I was using a popping fly and buddy Tom was using a popping plug. We each got a small striper and each missed a fish or two, plus a few super small bluefish. Finally after dark we found on area that held some small stripers that were feeding on very small bait fish. Here we each got about 6 more small stripers before calling it an night. If it was for that one last spot it would have been a pretty dismal fishing night. The biggest fish of the night was 20 inches. Do not think the stripers we caught were migrating fish but more of a grouping up or resident fish. At least we had a good ending to the night and how can you beat fishing in just a flannel shirt at this time of the year.
Ron, Sorry to hear of the loss of the boat and the mess and clean up under the house. You can't even stand up straight under the house to work on the stuff. That has to make clean up even twice as tough. Hope you can get you life back in order soon.
Glad you had some good times with the trout. Some updates from the Keys. Our home survived. It is raised about 5 feet with vinyl lattice surround. Plenty of storage. Think of it as your garage, without cars & a 5 foot ceiling with all your "stuff" stored there. Among comes 2-3 ft of MUDDY salt water stirred with 140 MPH winds before the horizontal rain. When the water recedes EVERYTHING is left covered with a heavy crusty film which has to be hand scrubbed & rinsed. Most power tools & freezer, ruined. Boat left in storage lot came off trailer & rested on starboard side supported by t-top. Insurance Co. totaled so I will bein the boat market soon. We are well & I actually caught a fish couple three days ago. 10 wt sinking line, incoming tide, clouser.
Got out a second day later in the week. Water was still moving strong and cleaner but the leaves were still all over and falling from the trees. Only got 7 trout the second day on the same flies as the first except did get two on a smaller white fly. (will take some pictures of flies as I have no idea what they are called)
In talking to two guides that were fishing with groups along the stream and with other anglers the fishing this fall has been tough. They said overall they did not think there were as many trout in the stream as the state the last few years have stocked some new streams and not put the numbers in Helton Creek. I kind of thought there were less fish as I normally will see more fish sipping off the top of the water or see more in the water. Still good fishing but not the normal high teens to 20 plus days that I have had in the past.
Here are a couple more pictures. Overall I had a great time.
With the saltwater fly fishing still pretty dead, there is little to nothing to report. Just waiting and hoping that some big weather change will take place and fishing will be normal again, but I am not holding my breath.
When I left for a weeks vacation in North Carolina the water temps were in the low 70's and now they are in the upper 60's. Still a long way from idea striper temperatures.
While in NC I did get a chance to go trout fishing in the northwestern part of the state. Got there right after some heavy rains from the last tropical storm. They had 5 inches the day before I arrived and the streams were muddy, filled with leaves and running hard. Third day the streams were better, but still loaded with leaves but I managed 9 trout the first day. Here are a few pictures from the first day of a couple of spots where I caught fish and a few trout, plus one of the few suckers that took a fly. All fish were caught on a black/brown and tan fly, a large all white fly or a weighted egg pattern. Only used those three.
Went out Saturday morning with a one person fly charter. Even with the fishing so poor, he was down for the weekend and wanted to give it a shot. Weather this morning was absolutely perfect. You could not of asked for better conditions. We had a full moon incoming tide, the water was nice and clean and there was some small bait fish around. We decided to work the back bay. In the first hour and half we had two small stripers to 18 1/2 inches a some small bluefish. It looked like it was going to be a great trip, but from then on it was only super small bluefish. Could not believe how bad it was as we fished a good number of tidal creeks that should of produced. They all looked perfect with good flows and bait fish but just n0 bass. Just those darn small bluefish. Hard to get excited about fishing personally or doing charters.
Went out Thursday night with a fly fishing friend around 5:30 pm to fish the last of the incoming tide. Tried the inlet on the outside and inside. Water was 71.6 degrees and looked a brownish green color. We got zero hits other than the 6 to 8 inch bluefish that are around.
With is slow, we moved to the back bay and fished numerous spots. Using a popper I got one small 22 inch bass and buddy Paul had one bass hit and miss. It was painfully slow and we did get more super small blues. After dark with the fishing super slow we were about to quit when we found one area with some small stripers. In that one area we caught 12 small bass in short order. They were caught on clouser flies with most fish being 16 to 18 inches. The last hour made the night enjoyable.
Ron, hope you can get back to the house soon and can get things in working order. Also that the foot is getting better.
Up here the weather is still warm. Just now getting the first few cool days where long pants were needed.
Sunday with it pretty windy and cooler I tried some fresh water fishing for about hour and a half and caught a 7 inch large mouth and a crappie that was bigger the the bass. (Will need cooler weather for things to pick up there)
Last night went out with a friend to see if anything was going on in the salt. It was perfect night. No wind, no bugs and the water in the back with a nice new moon tide was 68 to 69 degrees. We fished for two hours and caught around 15 snappers 6 to 8 inches long and scrounged up 6 small stripers. All the stripers were caught at last light or after dark in the last hour. Nothing big, but a lot better fishing than it has been for a while. Might of have to think about doing charters again if it picks up.
Fishing Reports October 1 - October 31
My foot is still healing nicely but we still have no power in Cudjoe Key & we will not be going down until we do. There have been some reports of looting still going on in our area even with a "lot" of people in residence. I am looking forward to an improvement in conditions. Enough of my woes. A local friend had a banner day yesterday on the Indian River. Releasing red drum to 36 inches & spotted sea trout to 22. I do hope there are reasons to find the fall bass in the Lower Del. Bay & some reports have been coming in from certain areas in the back waters. Hoping some can find the correct areas & techniques. Wishing good luck to all who can venture out.
Fishing Reports October 1 - October 31