Happy New Year everyone. Here are the latest fishing, hunting and outdoor reports received during this Holiday season. I'll be adding more as they come in but wanted to get this one out early in case some of you are traveling. Maybe after all the family visits, you can have a day on the water or in the field before the new year comes.
If you have a fishing or hunting report to share, or photos, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
UPDATED Ice report from Nielsen Channel as of 01/02/15 by Marcy
Hermann's Nielsen Channels - SAFE ICE!! ICE IS SAFE, over 4 inches, probably closer to 5.
Woo hoo!! Marcy
Lake of the Woods Minnesota fishing report as of 12-29-14 by Joe Henry
On the south shore, resorts moving farther north to deeper water while managing to find fish fry’s of walleyes, saugers and perch. Mornings and evenings the best bite. Either 34′ over mud or 21-28′ from the Gap towards Morris Point. Moving west towards Zippel Bay, Long Point and Arnesen’s, 26-28 feet. Hot colors are gold with glow red, green and glow colors tipped with minnows. Active jigging showing the best results, electronics helpful. 16-19 inches of ice on marked trails.
On the Rainy River, anglers are finding fish in 18 feet of water. Gold and plain hooks working with light presentation. Afternoons best bite.
Up at the NW Angle, many mixed bag limits consistent in 18-28 feet of water. Gold and pink best colors tipped with minnows. Many anglers working with resorts heading to Canada filling limits of Black Crappies. 14-15 inches of ice on roads from Young’s Bay to Islands. As always, use resort marked trails for safety.
Niagara New York fishing report by Bill Hilts, Jr.
- Lake Ontario and tributaries –Merry Christmas! Water conditions were low and slightly stained on 18 Mile Creek at Burt Dam but some rain was in the forecast to hoefully help things along as temperatures mid-week were pushing 60 degrees. Small jigs tipped with a wax worm and fished under a float is one approach; egg sacs or egg imitations like trout beads is another. Steve Hawkins of Captain Bob’s reports that another approach is to use the bead with an egg sac. Speaking of Capt. Bob’s, they will be running its ice fishing contest again from Jan. 2 through March 22 … when we get some ice. It’s not supposed to get colder until next week. Pier casters should still be able to catch some fish in Wilson and Olcott on spoons and spinners if this warming trend continues. Perch are also available but look for them in a bit warmer water. Lake Ontario was still hovering around 39 degrees.
- Lower Niagara River – Lower River trout action has been good this week but that will probably change with the high winds forecast for Christmas Eve – with gusts to 65 miles per hour from the southwest. Those winds will be riling up Lake Erie, forcing any muddy water that is churned up into the Niagara River and over the falls. Capt. Frank Campbell of Niagara Falls did well Monday and Tuesday using minnows one day; Kwikfish lures the other. Steelhead and lake trout were the two primary species grabbing baits. Devil’s hole, Artpark and the Niagara Bar have been the best three spots, but a few fish are starting to show up in the down river drifts. MagLips or egg sacs (white, yellow and pink) are still working to varying degrees depending on the day according to Capt. Matt Yablonsky of Youngstown. Remember that lake trout season reopens for the Lower Niagara River and Lake Ontario on January 1, 2015. Lake trout season is open on the Canadian side of the river. A new fishing license year starts Jan. 1 in the Province of Ontario. The new statewide Winter Classic Tournament will run from Jan. 1 through Feb. 22, 2015 and local weigh stations are The Slippery Sinker, Olcott; and All in the Same Boat, Newfane. This contest will be for fish caught through the ice, in open water, in the tributaries, and rivers. Categories are trout (including browns, lake trout and steelhead), pike, walleye, pickerel, crappie, yellow perch and panfish (sunfish and bluegill). Check out www.nysiceproam.com for more details or stop in to the two tackle shops mentioned earlier. The fish cleaning station in Lewiston is back to being functional.
- Upper Niagara River – Nothing changed from last week as far as options … unless the water turns murky from blowing winds on Wednesday. Trout and perch top the list of preferred targets, from Buffalo to Niagara Falls – depending on location. Outdoor Trade shows will be starting up soon, too. January 23-25 is the dates for the Greater Niagara Fishing and Outdoor Expo and things are really starting to come together nicely. Check out www.niagarafishingexpo.com for details including a list of speakers and exhibitors. Lake Erie is still 39 degrees as of this report.Bill Hilts, Jr. - Niagara Tourism & Convention Corporation