Your Guide, Bob


May 23, 2015…7:00am-12:00pm…..It was 31 degrees at launch time with a light south wind and clear skies that yielded lots of sunshine all day. The water temperature was 60-61.7 degrees. Visibility down to 8-9 foot depths made it easy to see some roaming fish on Victoria Bar in 5-7 feet but they would not bite. We made a second drift out to 9 feet and caught one 4 ½ pound smallmouth on a tube. Unfortunately that was all we could get there. We ran to Mission Meadows to check water temperature and found 58 degrees and no fish sightings so we ran back to upper Bemus bay where we caught a 2 pound smallmouth on a weightless plastic. We checked the lower part of Bemus Bay and saw 3 nice smallmouth roaming but could get nothing there. The water temperature was still around 61 degrees. Not warm enough for the fish to settle in the shallows. We finished up in the Long Point Marina and caught 5 largemouth. Being the weekend it was a busy place. We were lucky to get that many. Hopefully the weather forecast for next week holds up with the mid 70 degree temperatures. That should raise the water temperature and move the fish up to spawn. Enough of this cold weather, somebody tell Mother Nature IT’S SPRING!  
May 22, 2015…7:00am-12:00pm….We were greeted by 47 degrees this morning but lots of sunshine. The water temperature stayed right around 61 degrees with an 8-10 mph west wind that switched to WNW and increase to 10-15 mph. Water clarity is still down to about 7-8 feet. We took a shot at Victoria Bar looking for smallmouth but after 3 drifts and numerous baits we gave that up. We moved to upper Bemus Bay to hide from the wind but no fish there either. We spent the rest of the day in the Long Point Marina and caught 17 largemouth. No real size but at least they would bite. With the WNW wind blowing down the lake, most areas were very rough and uncomfortable so we just plain avoided them. Baits we used were spinner baits, suspending jerk baits, tubes, and weightless stick baits. The latter caught the fish worked very slow with long casts.  
May 20, 2015…7:00am-12:00pm…..Well, the warm up was short lived. This morning we started with cloudy skies and 49 degrees with a NW wind at 12 mph. Yup, that’s right Brrrrrrrrrrrr! We started in Bemus Bay just around the corner from Long Point using chatter baits, tubes and suspending jerk baits but could only get one strike that we missed. It’s amazing how they can miss 9 points on three treble hooks. We moved down below the bridge to the point at Bemus Creek where we caught 1 largemouth on a chatter bait. We fished the rocky Colburn shoreline but between the wind and no bites we gave that up to fish the Bemus side pilings of the bridge. That produced a bunch of rock bass and one smallmouth but it was a break from the wind. WE headed back up to the spot we started in Bemus Bay and fished it deeper in 6-8 feet and caught 2 more smallmouth on a weightless stick bait right in the same area that we missed a fish earlier. The final stop was right in the Long Point marina. There were largemouth cruising all through the marina. We used the soft stick bait and caught 14 of them. Good way to finish the day and it was out of that darn cold wind.  
May 19, 2015…6:30am-12:00pm…..It was a bit warmer this morning at 68 degrees but it didn’t last long dropping to 62 degrees by noon. We had a west wind at 5 mph to start and it eventually built up to 13-15 mph. The water temperature was pretty steady at 62-64 degrees. The further north we went the cooler the water temperature. The water is still clear with good visibility down to 10 feet in some places. We made the first run up to Lighthouse Point. There was decent fish activity there Sunday and it was shielded from the direct wind. We caught pan fish and largemouth vertical jigging the structure there. Not much size to the bass but still fun. We moved up the lake to Chautauqua Marina and fished around the shallows close to the docks. We could see nice largemouth roaming but they didn’t want anything we threw at them. Even retracing our drift and making long cast to the area they were in did not change the results. Next we moved to Chautauqua Point and fished the windy side of the shoal around to the calm side. Once we got to the calm side we caught only rock bass. Fun but not what we were looking for. We did get one smallmouth follow on a rattle trap. We ran down to the north side of Bemus Bay to get out of the now hard blowing wind. One smallmouth took a suspended jerk bait. The last stop proved to be the best stop, Victoria Bar. There we caught 2 nice smallmouth to end the trip. Both took a weightless stick bait.  
May 17, 2015…7:00am-2:00pm…..Fog and 60 degrees greeted us this morning restricting just how far we could venture from the Long Point ramp. The water temperature was 60.2 at the start and increased to 62.4 in most areas by the end of the trip. A light south wind early increased to around 8 mph. Today was another special day. I had the privilege to have outdoor writers Jeff Murray and Vic Attardo. Both are freelance writers for various publications. We were able to inch our way to Warner’s Bar. We were looking for a good pinfish bite but could not buy a bite searching from 4 feet out to 15 feet. The water was calm and crystal clear with visibility down to 9 feet with no sunlight to help. As the fog slowly lifted we worked up the NE shoreline between Midway Park and Dewittville. We fished small jigging spoons, tubes and even a white Berkley Power Jerk Shad looking for anything to bite. Three muskies followed the fluke at the mouth of Dewittville Creek along the buoy line. By now the fog lifted good enough to run over to Lighthouse Point where we fished the structure in 3-6 feet. Using tubes and small jigs we caught around 25 rock bass, one 2 lb largemouth and lost a really nice largemouth. There were other largemouth and smallmouth cruising around but they had no interest in our offerings. We ran back across the lake to Point Chautauqua looking for smallmouth but only saw a couple cruising. No takers! Next stop was Victoria where we caught a 5+ smallmouth. We tried Warner’s bar one last time and came away empty. It was a great day on the water with two great guys. The lake is still a week or so way from heating up. Lower air temperatures are forecast for the rest of the week so improvement is not happening soon.  
May 15, 2015…7:00am-12:00pm…..It was a little bit better day today, weather wise at least. The morning temperature was 54 degrees with partly cloudy skies and a south wind around 5 mph. It was a good time to check the northern end of the lake. The water temperature was 59.4 degrees around most areas I fished today. Warner’s Bar, the shoreline from Midway Park up to Mission Meadows and the mouth of Bemus Creek. The water was crystal clear down to 6 or 7 feet. Early we fished some top water with no luck. Fishing tube jigs, swim jigs, rattle traps and weightless soft plastics we caught 1 smallmouth, 4 largemouth and another 30+ inch muskie. The cooler temperatures have driven the bass off the shallows into deeper water. There were no fish moving in the shallows. I was hoping for the sun to come out and stay, which would have helped to warm the water. But again Mother Nature had other plans. By noon it was raining again. The future forecast looks good for next week. Hopefully the lake heats up soon.  
May 13, 2015…8:00am-2:00pm…..Somehow I think Mother Nature enjoys playing head games with us fisherman. It’s supposed to be spring, middle of May right? Hmmmmmmm, well we started our morning with very cloudy skies, a 10-20 mph wind from the NW and 43 degree temperature. Was I crazy to leave the ramp? I have no other answer than YES! But we did and started in Bemus Bay partially shielded from that wind. We fished top water, swim jigs, flukes and tubes and finally caught a 35 inch muskie on the tube. Not what we were looking for but a nice fight on 8lb test. We moved below the bridge to the mouth of a creek by Shore Acres and fished the entire flat with no luck. Moving down the lake along the eastern shore we stopped and fished the inside edge of two more points and then Sheldon Hall, all with only a lonely rock bass to show for it. We headed back up the lake to Long Point, tied up and got some warm tea from the café there. Remembering I had located some largemouth around the docks at Long Point earlier we fished around those docks with weightless stick baits and caught 9 largemouth. Oh yea, and the wind was blocked by the point so we fish in comfort. We should have started there. I’ll be smarter next time. :)  
May 5, 2015…9:00am-2:00pm…..Today was a special day. I had the honor of being asked to help out and show around the lake a very famous crappie fisherman, Wally Marshall “Mr. Crappie”. He happened to be up in Buffalo attending an outdoor writers’ event and wanted to fish for some Chautauqua Lake crappies. Well he picked a very tough day. Weeks before the fish were heavy in the canals and marinas. But today everyone struggled, that is except “Mr. Crappie”.

We started fishing the bridge pilings hoping that the fish were still holding on the concrete. Only a couple of perch would bite. We headed down to Smith Boys Marina where the canals had been loaded with crappie. Searching each of the three canals with small jigs we could only manage 6 or 7 largemouth bass. At the back of the last canal was the RT 394 bridge. Wall y pulled up to it and began catching fish, 11 crappie total. Not all keepers but still biting fish. Now that doesn’t sound like very many but everyone else was coming up goose eggs. I can tell you I couldn’t catch one, but then I’m a bass fisherman. That gets me off the hook, right? No pun intended.

I could not have met a classier man. At the ramp people came up to him and he went out of his way to have a conversation with them. Check out his website If you want to learn how to catch crappie when no one else can, he’s the man!

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