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Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4

Joined:
2009/6/11 1:27
From York, PA
Posts: 1415
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July 4th. I was waiting for the fireworks to start, so I thought the best place for me to be was standing in four feet of cool water with a flyrod in my hand.
I have given up with the smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna. But carp and catfish are a hearty fish that don't seem to mind the pollution and brown water.
I arrived at 8:30, just before dark, and waded with chestwaders and my 6wt with intermediate sink line. I used a size 6 unweighted black woolybugger. A big black bugger seems to have the best results for me after dark.
The water seemed chilly for July. Clarity was OK, maybe two feet?
I caught and released 5 beautiful channel cats. From 10" to 19".
A truly wonderful time fishing. The channel cats fight just as hard as a smallmouth bass. They don't jump like a smallie does, but they shake and pull drag like crazy. The big one almost took me to the backing!
The highlight of the night was the crackers, of course, but just as exciting to me was the hatching hellgramites that were flying around. A fully grown hellgramite is 4" long and has a wing span as big as a bat!! I was standing in the dark and a couple almost hit me in the head!!
Tight Lines

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Posted on: 2009/7/5 1:13


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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Nice report. I remember watching the fire works up near Wormleysburg years ago and catching bass during the show. Cool report with the catties though. I wonder if they were keyed on helgrammite nymphs and that might explain the effectiveness of the Wolley Bugger (?).

Posted on: 2009/7/5 8:05


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4

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2008/8/24 20:26
From Mount Joy, PA
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You'll have to pardon my ignorance, but what is the proper way to handle a catfish to avoid injury?

Posted on: 2009/7/5 11:14


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4

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2009/5/8 23:25
Posts: 313
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You can lip catfish, but the bigger ones have pretty powerful jaws. On small fish, some people wrap the webbing between the thumb and index around one barb, and the webbing between the pinky and the ring finger around the other barb, with your palm cradling the stomach. Most larger fish, the best bet is just to beach them in some shallow water, unless you want to get a noodling grab on the lower jaw with your fist in their mouth.

Posted on: 2009/7/5 14:32


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4

Joined:
2009/6/11 1:27
From York, PA
Posts: 1415
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"I wonder if they were keyed on helgrammite nymphs and that might explain the effectiveness of the Wolley Bugger (?)."

I think that you hit the nail on the head!
In the past, I have found that the cats and rockbass swim near the surface when the sun goes down. When they look around, a black silhouette stands out the best and makes a easy target for them. A slow, twitching retrieve with a black bugger is actually better than live bait!! I can usually outfish the "liver" boys that sit on the bank! LOL
Catfish are fun on a flyrod, who needs smallmouth anymore?
Cheers

Posted on: 2009/7/6 11:53


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4

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2009/4/20 10:36
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What happened to the smallmouth fishing on the Susquehanna?
Several years ago I started looking into smallmouth fishing the Susquehanna and all the reports were bad. Is the smallmouth fishing still bad? What happened?

Posted on: 2009/7/9 14:50


Re: Susquehanna, Wrightsville 7/4
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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Smitty,
Welcome to the board! There has been a lot of discussion of this issue (the poor fishing for smallmouths in the Susky in recent years) on this website. In a very small nutshell: Nobody really knows what happened - many believe it is pollution, others think maybe disease or failed spawning. The official view of the Fish Commission is that more study is needed but that there MAY be a connection to warm water. I'm in the boat with those who claim that they don't know. This is where it stands right now. Scroll back through some of the posts on this site under Conservation or Warmwater and you'll find a lot of insight.

Posted on: 2009/7/9 15:16






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