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Essox

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2006/9/9 16:33
Posts: 681
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Anybody ever go after pike or Musky on the fly?
This may be an exercise in futility, but hey why not its Feb and my mind is wandering.

There are a bunch more warm water fisheries than cold in my corner of PA.

Posted on: 2007/2/13 11:45


Re: Essox

Joined:
2006/9/10 20:44
From Room 109
Posts: 3134
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I've gone. Now ask me if I have ever caught anything. I have heard high point lake has pike but have never pulled anything outta there.

Posted on: 2007/2/13 11:49


Re: Essox

Joined:
2006/9/9 20:09
From Harrisburg
Posts: 2190
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Dear ryan,

Pike aren't too common in this part of the State. I've seen a few caught on the fly in the North Branch of the Susquehanna though. There is a good population of pike in the river from Tunkhannock north into NY. My brother caught a 47 inch pike on a Clouser Minnow in Johnson City, NY about 10 years ago. The biggest I ever landed was a puny 33 incher.

I've had several bite-offs when fishing large Clouser's around the Fabri-Dam on the Susquehanna in Sunbury. I suspect that most of those bite-offs were due to muskies since I was fishing 3/0 to 5/0 flies at the time.

The key to catching either of those fish on a fly is locating them. Try a Springtime trip to Presque Isle Bay on Erie. It's like Sandy Pond on Ontario, the pike come into the shallow bay to spawn. Kinzua Reservoir is also loaded with pike.

Muskies are a whole 'nuther story. I've never had the patience to deliberately target them. Every musky that I have caught was pretty much caught by accident while fishing for another specie.

Regards,
Tim Murphy

Posted on: 2007/2/13 13:47


Re: Essox

Joined:
2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13624
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I tried last fall at Quenamahoning. Back in the area of the green bridge there are some grassy shallows that look very "pikey". Didn't have any luck but boy is that a pretty place. Gin clear water. Could see a good 10 feet down from the float tube. Caught a bunch of bass but no pike. I also heard about high point but never went for pike. I was just using some of the clousers and deceivers I had tied for the beach.

Did have a musky save me the trouble of retrieving and unhooking a bluegill once. Of course I had to tie on a new tippet and fly. Took it off about 3 feet in front of me on maiden creek in berks county.

Posted on: 2007/2/13 14:35


Re: Essox

Joined:
2006/9/10 11:16
From Harrisburg PA
Posts: 616
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In additon to the great muskie fishing on the Susqie and Schuylkill River, there are many small lakes with public access in Central PA that support good numbers of muskies. I usually fish from my canoe or, if I'm lucky, my Dad spends the morning and/or evening propelling me around in his jonboat w/ a trolling motor.

Like most predatory fish, they are most agressive in low light conditions. In the spring, find sheltered bays with clean bottoms which provide spawning grounds. If these spawners nest are challenged by a large baitfish imitation, get ready for a furious explosion.

In summer look for drop-offs from shallow to deep water. The muskie will hold deeper and swim up to attack baitfish.

Fall fishing should find you casting to weedlines in more shallow water. Mushies get very aggressive this time of year as they are feeding to prepare for winter.

I use a 9ft, 9wt Temple Fork TiCrx with an Orvis Mach series reel. The fast action 9wt makes casting large flies less tiring and if you hook up you will be happy to have large arbor, great drag, plenty of backing and a powerful rod. I use floating line for shallow water fishing and a striper intermediate for deep water. Large flies, size 3/0 to 6/0 to match the baitfish available. Be sure to use some kind of wire bite guard. I like the Tyger wire, as it ties knots and I can decide my wire length, usually about 4 inches.

Have a boga grip or lippa grip and pliers, DO NOT fool with the teeth! I'm not kidding! Don't be suprised if you catch some lunker bass using these same tactics. Site fishing the shallows in spring and fall are my favorite and have been most productive.

Posted on: 2007/2/14 12:52


Re: Essox
Moderator
Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
Posts: 9183
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It's doable but tough. Most of the "glory photos" of guys you see with big pike are taken in Canada. As Tim said, there aren't a lot of good pike waters down here in SC Pa. Probably the best water is Lake Marburg in Codorus SP. I target pike there every spring, although with conventional tackle. Hit the shallow, weedy bays with a large, white streamer. On opening day of trout season in 2005 I got a 34" fish on a spinnerbait. Sometimes you can see the fish and a well placed fly ought to tempt 'em. Usually by the end of April the pike, esp the big ones, have moved to deep water. For muskies, the big rivers are probably your best bet. Holman Lake has tiger muskies and might be worth a try. For the big rivers during the cold months, target feeder creeks as this is where muskies like to lay up. Water that is very clear usually doesn't fish well for some reason - a slight stain seems better. Fish a large, clouser type streamer with a short wire bite leader or heavy flourocarbon and strip the fly slowly along the bottom. Scotto is right about the big bass, esp if the water is warm. I use my 8WT with 20lb tippet for muskies. I fly fished for muskies only once last year and that was December on the Juniata. I drive from one feeder to the next and wade fish. Didn't see any. Wear your polarized glasses because often you will see a fish follow. Once you know where he is you can usually hook him eventually. Most musky action I have had has been while bass fishing. I keep a large clouser with wire in a readily accessible pocket and if I see a musky I cut off and tie this fly on a cast back to try and tempt the musky.

Posted on: 2007/2/15 10:49


Re: Essox

Joined:
2006/9/15 11:33
Posts: 72
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I fish for Pike once a year when I go up to Northern Ontario. I bring an 8 wgt but often catch them on my 6 wgt while fishing for smallies. There may be 40 inch pike in the lake, but I've never seen one. The ones I've caught with the fly rod have ranged from 18 to 28 inches.
Muskie I use to target before I took up fly fishing, with live bait and lures. I haven't really gone after them. I did catch a 12 inch one in Crum Creek on a fly. Figure it washed out of Springton Reservoir.
If you want to get a taste of what fishing for pike or muskie is like, find a local lake that has chain pickerel in it. They're definitely fun on a fly rod.

Posted on: 2007/2/15 21:49






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