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City Smallmouths

div align=”center”a href=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSwj1A-fI/AAAAAAAAARA/8eHsnWzxwhQ/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+1.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292724541356530″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 260px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSwj1A-fI/AAAAAAAAARA/8eHsnWzxwhQ/s400/8-26+smallmouth+1.jpg” border=”0″ //aemspan style=”font-size:85%;”Captain Redsicker with a typical city smallmouth/span/em /divbr /Whenever serious talk turns to smallmouths, Lake Erie starts jumping off tongues like a bass on steroids. But there’s a lot of omission going on, especially if the conversation takes place in New York State. You see, Lake Ontario, the second deepest Great Lake, might not have the massive stretches of shallow habitats its next of kin on the other side of the Niagara River boasts, but what little it has is loaded with smallies. br /br /br /br /I’ve had numerous memorable outings tackling these challenging beasts in Oswego’s territorial waters in the past and got the urge to go in late July, the beginning of the dog days of summer, a time that normally triggers a good smallie bite. I contacted Capt. Dick Redsicker, owner of Upstate Outfitters (315-298-4107), one of the few guides who specializes in bronzebacks.br /br /br /br /“Ain’t much happening out there, yet,” he replied.br /br /br /br /In the beginning of this month I called again.br /br /br /br /“There’s a few around but not many. Call again next week.”br /br /br /br /The urge to catch some smallies kept growing fiercer and fiercer as the days dragged on. Finally, on the 12th I called…Eureka!!!!br /br /br /br /“I’ve been nailing ‘em all morning,” claimed Redsicker, “tallie’s 37 so far. br /br /br /br /I even got a rock bass that would seriously challenge the state record. I released it…and boy, do I regret that now.” I made it to Wright’s Landing in about an hour. By then he had landed and released 51 smallmouths. “Nothing huge, but they were all fun,” he beamed.br /br /br /br /Rounding the Lighthouse point, we headed for the western corner of the west wall and fished about 50 yards from shore, under the shadow of the steam plant’s towering twin smokestacks.br /br /br /br /Something was blooming and it wasn’t the green shoots you read about in the financial press. It was more real, green/brown algae, I suspect. It streaked the surface like long, green hairs. When you ran through it with the motor, the water turned muddy brown. br /br /br /br /Since neither of us is a scientist, we stopped talking about what we thought and went back to what we knew. Dick’s technique is about as simple as it gets. He threads a salty, smoke colored Bass Pro Shops tube on a ½-oz. jighead, tosses it over the side, lets it sink to bottom and just drifts along. When the wind kicked up a little, we used a sock to slow us down.br /br /br /br /We got some hits; mostly short strikes. You could feel the fish pick up the tube by the hairs and just nibble. I got a couple solid hits, but when I set the hook…nothing. One of life’s greatest mysteries is how sometimes a fish can hit a lure–even crankbaits packing three treble hooks–and not get hooked. (If I did that, I’d have scars in my lips marking each time.)br /br /br /br /After floating around for about an hour we pulled the lines in and headed further out, into water 50 feet deep. We went hitless for about an hour. Then Dick nailed a ¾-pound rock bass.br /br /br /br /I nailed one next, about the same size.br /br /br /br /A few minutes later, Dick nails a monster that went well over a pound. That in itself was worth the trip as far as I was concerned.br /br /br /br /Fish started showing up on the graph but they wouldn’t hit. Dick began wondering out loud why he had such good luck earlier and not now. Just then, a fish nailed his tube and he brought a nice smallie aboard.br /br /br /br /A few minutes later, we switched over to Berkley Gulp 3-inch Leeches.br /br /br /br /The action picked up a bit and we nailed several smallies apiece, plus a few monstrous rock bass. I mean I’ve caught some big ones before, but seldom anything over a pound. We got several that day.br /br /br /br /“Everything’s late this year,” Dick opined as we headed in. I bet ya September is gonna be hot.”br /br /br /br /“I’m sure it will be,” I replied. “I’ll call ya the first week of the month…and the second…Oh, and I’ll bring the donuts and coffee.”br /br /br /br /br /br /div align=”center”a href=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSwIYLYnI/AAAAAAAAAQ4/-jKhWYwDsdk/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+2.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292717172646514″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 264px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSwIYLYnI/AAAAAAAAAQ4/-jKhWYwDsdk/s400/8-26+smallmouth+2.jpg” border=”0″ //a emspan style=”font-size:85%;”Capt. Redsicker and a trophy rock bass br /br //span/embr /br /a href=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSvx7kb2I/AAAAAAAAAQw/12vdNQgyN8Q/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+3.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292711147073378″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 266px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSvx7kb2I/AAAAAAAAAQw/12vdNQgyN8Q/s400/8-26+smallmouth+3.jpg” border=”0″ //a emspan style=”font-size:85%;”Round Gobies, an exotic that’s turninginto an important food source, grow big in Oswego too.br /br /br //span/embr /br /diva href=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSjHz0WPI/AAAAAAAAAQo/uhhA06OBcRc/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+4.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292493681842418″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 259px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSjHz0WPI/AAAAAAAAAQo/uhhA06OBcRc/s400/8-26+smallmouth+4.jpg” border=”0″ //aemspan style=”font-size:85%;” A bloom of some sort streaking the water like flowing hair.br /br //span/embr /br /diva href=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSi80eKUI/AAAAAAAAAQg/PlfB0OBSV08/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+5.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292490731792706″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 270px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 400px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSi80eKUI/AAAAAAAAAQg/PlfB0OBSV08/s400/8-26+smallmouth+5.jpg” border=”0″ //a emspan style=”font-size:85%;”Under the shadow of Oswego’s towering smoke stacksbr /br //span/embr /br /diva href=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSidelz4I/AAAAAAAAAQY/Xszj23cT2yk/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+6.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292482318520194″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 262px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSidelz4I/AAAAAAAAAQY/Xszj23cT2yk/s400/8-26+smallmouth+6.jpg” border=”0″ //aemspan style=”font-size:85%;” Rounding the lighthouse pointbr /br //span/embr /br /diva href=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSh3XqIqI/AAAAAAAAAQQ/tOaab8NCHek/s1600-h/8-26+smallmouth+7.jpg”img id=”BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5374292472088896162″ style=”DISPLAY: block; MARGIN: 0px auto 10px; WIDTH: 400px; CURSOR: hand; HEIGHT: 265px; TEXT-ALIGN: center” alt=”” src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_uazGpGrGm98/SpVSh3XqIqI/AAAAAAAAAQQ/tOaab8NCHek/s400/8-26+smallmouth+7.jpg” border=”0″ //aemspan style=”font-size:85%;” An Oswego still life: sailboat and smoke stacks…/span/em/div/div/div/divbr //divdiv class=”blogger-post-footer”img width=’1′ height=’1′ src=’https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/tracker/4587593463340152030-5343637885476166983?l=fishingandhuntinginoswego.blogspot.com’//div