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EsoxAC3

St Lawrence Muskies- July and August

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Has anyone had any luck targeting early season HOGs on the river? If so, any tips or tactics that you'd be willing to share would be very much appreciated! Trying to extend the fall fishing season...... Look forward to hearing about your experiences! Thank you and tight lines.

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Years back we use to have some great success night trolling the Ogdensburg Bar in late July, bouncing Hellbender Water Dogs on bottom.

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Thanks for the info. I have never fished near the Burg but have heard of some nice fish being taken in that part of the river.

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I know ski heads can be tight lipped about the what, where, and when.... Particularly on the river. However, there must be some summer success stories out there or some inadvertent hook ups. Love to hear the good, bad, and ugly. Whats your take on how these fish relate to structure in the summer v fall? All good stuff. Thanks again, and tight lines!!

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Not an authority by any means but I believe I read about the muskie moving to the lake during summer at the head of the river some time back. There was a large die off about 5 years ago. I did see a photo of a large specimen caught at grenadier island late summer by a guy trolling, early 2000's.

Edited by Roughrider IV

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I rarely fish the Larry in summer, usually fall is the best bite around Gananoque,I live on the Ottawa river, the summer bite is great here,17 fish boated so far,biggest 51", nobody I know fishes much down there, try the ottawa or rideau rivers, if you can

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I have always wanted to try the redeau and Ottawa. So much water, so little time!! Congrats on a great summer of Muskie fishing. Tight lines And good luck.

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Hi EsoxAC3,

 

I've been going up to the islands with the family every year for the last 30+ years now.  After the family sold our cottage up there, we usually stay and fish in Alex Bay or Clayton.  Many of those years we spent pike/bass fishing or off the docks with worms.  These days I try to carry on that family tradition with my own as I keep my boat up in Clayton and will fish from there up to A-Bay. 

 

In my own opinion and experiences (and I am by no means an expert so please take all my thoughts with a grain of salt), there is a population of muskies that never leaves the river and there is a greater population that migrates out to the big pond and back in again in the fall.  It's not to say you can't catch them in July/Aug but it is certainly more difficult.  If you haven't ever fished up there before, I'd highly recommend hiring a guide first time out like Capt. Bob Walters / Capt. Darryl of Water Wolf Charters (who both gave great presentations at Muskies Inc. meeting last year).

 

This past weekend I had the family up there and we had a chance to visit the "Musky Hall of Fame" museum up in Clayton.  It's a pretty cool exhibit if you have ever never been and fun for the family.  Admission is free and I make a little donation each time I visit.  My daughter gets really excited to see the replica mounts :yes:

 

charlotte_worldrecord2_zpsefa5a933.jpg

 

charlotte_worldrecord1_zps01a5656b.jpg

 

Saturday we were out on the water watching the boat races they had going on - boy were those boats loud!  :rock:   After that, I was ready to for some quiet time and momma got to do some worm fishing while daddy played with baby for a bit.  After we went through our allotment of worms for the day, mommy got to play with baby and daddy got to try a couple casts.  I only had about an hour to fish that day but it wasn't long before I felt that unmistakable tug on the end of your line that feels like you snagged bottom.  I knew what it was right away, just didn't know how big till it came fully air born out of water a couple times.  As mommy held baby at front of the boat, Daddy tried to figure out how to net fish one-handed.  Lucky for me I dipped net in the water and fish swam herself into it - stroke of luck there. 

 

After a quick picture, we released her back and she swam right away strong.  Water temp was 68 degrees.

 

musky2_zps581a0aa4.jpg

 

musky1_zps66d98d8e.jpg

 

She was even kind enough to leave one of her teeth in my solid oak wood lure...  I should donate this lure to the musky museum with the tooth in it still. 

 

photo4_zpsd8d05cbf.jpg

 

So EsoxAC3, to sum up my answer to your question, I'd say that summer time musky fishing up in the Islands will greatly test your patience but reward your determination, with an emphasis on greatly testing your patience.  To go days or weeks without seeing anything in the summer is normal.  I got lucky.  If you are looking for more "action", then I would try pike or bass fishing up there.  We got some nice pike last weekend we were up there and you can catch them consistently every time out. 

 

pike1_zps285c493f.jpg

 

Lastly, I'd be remiss if I didn't give a special thank you to my wife for allowing me to keep my family traditions alive and for playing along so willingly even though I know she would probably much rather be out on a wine tour or shopping at the mall.

 

Good luck to each of you this year!

 

Cheers,

Chad

 

 

 

 

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Nice Chad :yes: !!! That looks like a contender for the IGFA C&R record.

 

I wouldn't donate the lure. :shake:  It looks like it has produced a lot of action in the past.

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Yeah that was new PB for me Ivan.  My previous was 51.5" - this one had it beat by a couple inches.  IGFA contender for sure but wife & baby are not members so I don't think it counts.  No worries though..... in my heart of hearts, I'm still smiling :)

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Beast!   With an hour to fish for the day...and casting no less.   Way to go man!   I bet you're still smilin

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I know a couple guys that went further up recently for a week. They did casting, jigging and draging tubes. They got a 55 on a Bondy, a 49, a few others in the 40s and a 35.

Edited by muskiedreams

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Congrats on a trophy of a lifetime! You may have only fished an hour but what about all the previous fishless hours? . You earned it. No musky is nicer looking than a st lawrence ski, just awesome buddy.

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Edited by BP Swing

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Thanks everyone for the kind words. Many hours go into getting that one strike. Don't let the one hour fool ya - it was a very calculated hour that was right at both sunset and moon rise on a full moon cycle. It was the one hour that day you definitely wanted to be musky fishing ;)

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Awesome post from the postmaster!! And an excellent event all the way around.....even for the fish it seems!  :) I have never been to that museum there.....did not even know it existed. After seeing that killer, forlorn looking (can't wait till this cooking is done so I can get back to some fishing!) shore lunch mannequin, I've got to go visit that! And to think all the times I went and stayed in Clayton and fished and camped in that region.....always something new to learn. Thanx!  :yes:

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Blue Eye,

What a Hog!! That is just a beautiful muskie. Sounds like the perfect end to a wonderful day.

I live in Clayton and know the muskie museum well. It is a great steward of thousand islands history and culture. I believe it is the TI museum that facilitates the catch and release print program. If you provide pic, measurements, and witness you will earn a very nice muskie release print by Michael Ringer. Very cool initiative to promote the continued viability of our beloved muskie fishery.

May I ask roughly where you hooked up? Great pics! Thank you for sharing. Tight lines:)

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I think it was that setting sun rising supermoon that did it !!! :)  :)

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Hi Fisherman72 -

 

Pike have come on a wide variety of baits including tubes, bucktails, jerkbaits and spoons (red/white dare devil).  Any weedy bay will hold pike up there.  Spoons were our best lure for pike recently though - they wanted it slower. 

 

Thanks for info on musky release prints EsoxAC3 - I'll look more into that!

 

Chad

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Blue Eye,

I stand corrected.... The muskie release print is obtained through Save the River. post-155409-14078912656347_thumb.jpg

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Hi EsoxAC3 -

 

You are right - looks like the program is run by Save the River.  What a great idea that is!  Kudos to Save the River and Michael Ringer for partnering up on a program like this. 

 

Here is the link for others looking for more information on the Catch and Release program.

 

http://www.savetheriver.org/index.cfm?page=app.programsMuskie

 

You can download the required forms right there as well. 

 

Cheers,

Chad

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Hi EsoxAC3,

 

I've been going up to the islands with the family every year for the last 30+ years now.  After the family sold our cottage up there, we usually stay and fish in Alex Bay or Clayton.  Many of those years we spent pike/bass fishing or off the docks with worms.  These days I try to carry on that family tradition with my own as I keep my boat up in Clayton and will fish from there up to A-Bay. 

 

In my own opinion and experiences (and I am by no means an expert so please take all my thoughts with a grain of salt), there is a population of muskies that never leaves the river and there is a greater population that migrates out to the big pond and back in again in the fall.  It's not to say you can't catch them in July/Aug but it is certainly more difficult.  If you haven't ever fished up there before, I'd highly recommend hiring a guide first time out like Capt. Bob Walters / Capt. Darryl of Water Wolf Charters (who both gave great presentations at Muskies Inc. meeting last year).

 

This past weekend I had the family up there and we had a chance to visit the "Musky Hall of Fame" museum up in Clayton.  It's a pretty cool exhibit if you have ever never been and fun for the family.  Admission is free and I make a little donation each time I visit.  My daughter gets really excited to see the replica mounts :yes:

 

charlotte_worldrecord2_zpsefa5a933.jpg

 

charlotte_worldrecord1_zps01a5656b.jpg

 

Saturday we were out on the water watching the boat races they had going on - boy were those boats loud!  :rock:   After that, I was ready to for some quiet time and momma got to do some worm fishing while daddy played with baby for a bit.  After we went through our allotment of worms for the day, mommy got to play with baby and daddy got to try a couple casts.  I only had about an hour to fish that day but it wasn't long before I felt that unmistakable tug on the end of your line that feels like you snagged bottom.  I knew what it was right away, just didn't know how big till it came fully air born out of water a couple times.  As mommy held baby at front of the boat, Daddy tried to figure out how to net fish one-handed.  Lucky for me I dipped net in the water and fish swam herself into it - stroke of luck there. 

 

After a quick picture, we released her back and she swam right away strong.  Water temp was 68 degrees.

 

musky2_zps581a0aa4.jpg

 

musky1_zps66d98d8e.jpg

 

She was even kind enough to leave one of her teeth in my solid oak wood lure...  I should donate this lure to the musky museum with the tooth in it still. 

 

photo4_zpsd8d05cbf.jpg

 

So EsoxAC3, to sum up my answer to your question, I'd say that summer time musky fishing up in the Islands will greatly test your patience but reward your determination, with an emphasis on greatly testing your patience.  To go days or weeks without seeing anything in the summer is normal.  I got lucky.  If you are looking for more "action", then I would try pike or bass fishing up there.  We got some nice pike last weekend we were up there and you can catch them consistently every time out. 

 

pike1_zps285c493f.jpg

 

Lastly, I'd be remiss if I didn't give a special thank you to my wife for allowing me to keep my family traditions alive and for playing along so willingly even though I know she would probably much rather be out on a wine tour or shopping at the mall.

 

Good luck to each of you this year!

 

Cheers,

Chad

:clap:  :clap:  :clap:  Great fish Chad!  Congratz!   Thanks for sharing. Glad she released well for you. By all means stop down to Save The River and apply for your musky print. They are really nice to frame and hang on the wall near the replica mount.   I don't know if I would give that lure to the museum, or not? I might just retire it, and put it in the mouth of the mount, to go with the whole story!  :) We have a few musky teeth stuck in the wall down in the cabin of The Waterwolf, that were given up by released fish. I hear Capt Rich Clark has quite the collection of them, from all the musky he has caught and released in his lifetime up there?

 

We are still finishing up our salmon season down here, but can't wait to get up there and hunt for the next World Record musky, that we all know lives in the mighty St.Lawrence.  

 

See you then.  

 

                        Capt. Darryl Raate  

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