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Wbranch has attached these 2 pictures to this report. The message is below.
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Report at a Glance

General RegionSouth central PA
Specific LocationBetween Marietta & Wrightsvile
Time of Daynoon to 4:00
Fish CaughtSmallmouth bass
Conditions & HatchesNo hatches clarity to about 3'.

Details and Discussion

WbranchOctober 22nd, 2013, 1:41 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2481
Larger smallmouth have moved out of the deeper water and are moving into shallower water following minnows that don't like colder water.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Al514October 22nd, 2013, 6:43 am
Central New York

Posts: 142
Nice looking fish!
Kschaefer3October 22nd, 2013, 10:04 am
St. Paul, MN

Posts: 376
Sounds like fun! Really nice smallie!
OldredbarnOctober 22nd, 2013, 11:47 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
"It's nice work, if you can get it, and you can get it, if you try!"...

Nice "work" there Matt! I love it, "Dear. I need to get up to the cottage to close the darn thing down." Then he sneeks out for a float and smacks some small-mouth. We are onto you fella! ;)

:)

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
Jmd123October 22nd, 2013, 9:26 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2354
Nice fishies there, Matt! I notice a spinning rod in the photo. Are these fish not catchable on flies? I would have thought that your big Clousers would work well for them.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
PaulRobertsOctober 22nd, 2013, 10:21 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
Nice. Love the relaxed smile too. Funny how bass, and other non-spotted critters, can elicit that. Seems too many spotted fish pics come with near scowls that seem to say "I gotch ya, ya ... conniving ... bastrd!" :)
Jmd123October 22nd, 2013, 10:42 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2354
Paul, fishing for bass and panfish is what I call "comfort fishing". Not nearly as intense and demanding as trout fishing - exhilarating as that is - but more relaxed and at times more fun. Although, I've had some days on [REDACTED] Pond that I would call "comfort fishing", when the brookies were up in the feeder creek and hitting almost anything you threw at them...

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
JOHNWOctober 23rd, 2013, 5:38 pm
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
Jonathon,
I don't want to speak for Matt, however I believe it is very possible to entice those fish on the long rod it is more a matter of efficiency and covering water that results in the use of spinning gear.
The Susky is about as a river gets in this part of the world and has an enourmous amount of cover to manage.
JW
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn
PaulRobertsOctober 23rd, 2013, 7:40 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
Not sure where this thread is headed ... But as an opportunity to talk fishing, I'll bite, and say that yes we die-hard trout fishers tend to take fishing for other species more for granted, and have less "intensity" wrapped up in it. But it doesn't have to be so. Other fish, including even the "lowly" bluegill, can get very heady if you look into it deep enough. Nature rolls over for no one -meaning the deeper you look, the deeper it gets. Granted some critters, fish included, live more complex lives than others, but even bluegills could give you a lifetime of challenge, with you saying with your very last gasps, "I shoulda... I coulda... I wonder.....".

Oh... I guess I missed the train of conversation above. Will leave my ramblings there.

Anyway, agree with John that conventional tackle is more efficient. And yes, they are very catchable on fly tackle, as you probably know. My guess is Matt uses both. I certainly do.
OldredbarnOctober 23rd, 2013, 8:59 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
It looks to me like there's a fly line hanging off that rod tip...I think we are looking at one of Matt's homemade rods...He only has enough to stock a really nice fly shop...

Kind of hard to make out what's hanging out of that fishes mouth, probably why Matt has no problem showing it to us. ;)

Either way, that's one hell of a fish!

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
PaulRobertsOctober 23rd, 2013, 10:43 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1776
Yes, I see the flyline coming off the (unseen) reel in the lower left too. Either way, yes that's a nice smallie. Gosh they are great fish!
Al514October 24th, 2013, 8:14 am
Central New York

Posts: 142
I fundamentally believe that the more experiences a person has, the better their chances of being a well rounded person who can handle different situations effectively.

I think that fishing for more species will only help someones ability as a fly angler. They'll be able to present different solutions in situations where a "trout only" approach might not have the answer.
Kschaefer3October 24th, 2013, 9:25 am
St. Paul, MN

Posts: 376
I fundamentally believe that the more experiences a person has, the better their chances of being a well rounded person who can handle different situations effectively.

I think that fishing for more species will only help someones ability as a fly angler. They'll be able to present different solutions in situations where a "trout only" approach might not have the answer.

Two very good points.

Paul - You are a pretty big bass fisher as well, correct? Do you find that helps you target large trout? I have heard from many reputable sources that large trout behave very similar to bass.
OldredbarnOctober 24th, 2013, 5:29 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
Well...Concerning, as you infer, that variety is the spice of life...I expect we should be hearing from Matt soon with some steelhead pics.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
WbranchOctober 25th, 2013, 2:33 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2481
John wrote;

"it is more a matter of efficiency and covering water that results in the use of spinning gear."

When the Susquehanna River is warmer I do use my fly rod for the smallmouth but to tell you the truth I can count on one hand how many 20" smallies I have caught on the fly rod. To catch those really big 19" - 21" smallmouth consistently I have to wait until October when the big bass leave the impoundment about one mile below where these pics were taken and come up into the relarive shallows of the river to herd, and gorge, on minnows and young of the year baby shad. I use a 9' 6" noodle rod with 6# Pline as my main line, then a micro barrel swivel and 3' of 4X flurocarbon for my tippet.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
PaulRobertsOctober 25th, 2013, 5:53 am
Colorado

Posts: 1776
I fundamentally believe that the more experiences a person has, the better their chances of being a well rounded person who can handle different situations effectively.

I think that fishing for more species will only help someones ability as a fly angler. They'll be able to present different solutions in situations where a "trout only" approach might not have the answer.

Two very good points.

Paul - You are a pretty big bass fisher as well, correct? Do you find that helps you target large trout? I have heard from many reputable sources that large trout behave very similar to bass.

I agree with AI514 that any angling experience is helpful. And yes, large browns and bass share some characteristics. But each species has unique physiological and ecological characteristics that need to be be understood to really be on top of each.

And, to wrap in Matt's excellent explanation for large smallmnouth location in the Susky system is a great example the limnological and ecological characteristics that exist unknown to most anglers.
OldredbarnOctober 25th, 2013, 11:08 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
And, to wrap Matt's excellent explanation for large smallmnouth location in the Susky system is a great example the limnological and ecological characteristics that exist unknown to most anglers.


Me thinks Matt has done the time...He knows the places he fishes well...He's like those Grizzly up in Alaska who know when and where they need to be to snag some migrating salmon.

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
WbranchOctober 25th, 2013, 12:30 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2481
Spence wrote;

"He's like those Grizzly up in Alaska who know when and where they need to be to snag"

Yea, that's me "Grizzly Matt"! Often I'm the only guy in the boat, or wading, on that entire mile wide and mile long piece of water. Often when it is quiet I'll set the motor as slow as it will go and just idle my way all around that water keeping my eye on the sonar and remembering where I see depressions and the water depth goes from 2' deep to 5' deep.

If those bass won't take my offering I'll wade out into the flow and just grab them as they swim by.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
JOHNWOctober 29th, 2013, 6:41 pm
Chambersburg, PA

Posts: 452
THose grizzly are far less refined than our Matt. I have personally witnessed him assume the lotus position in the rowing seat of his drift boat and a few "oms" later large wild browns and rainbows were climbing into the boat and hooking themselves.


On a more serious note Matt has a different nickname in my fishing journals.
I refer to him only as E.F. (as in Hutton). When he talks......... I listen.
"old habits are hard to kill once you have gray in your beard" -Old Red Barn
OldredbarnOctober 30th, 2013, 6:36 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
That's good John. Otherwise he may toss you overboard! :)
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood

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