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I have fished saltwater my whole life in the florida keys and i have never fished in freshwater. At the end of july i will be taking a trip to Mason. I need advice on where to fish, what i will be catching, and what bait/tackle i should use.

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I live in mason, there is not too much to speak of as far as fishing is concerned right around town, plenty of farm ponds but i wouldn't recommend fishing them if you dont know whether you can or not, I have been kicked off more times than i can count. Your best bet around here if you dont have a boat is probably to hit the little miami river, it runs pretty close to mason and you can get into some decent smallmouth fishing near by if you know where to go, shoot me a pm if you want any spots to fish or have any more specific questions I'd be happy to answer them.
 

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Any of the rivers up here would be a good bet. The Little Miami like LMRPoseidon says has some good smallmouth fishing in it. If you head over to the westside of town the Great Miami river has some very good fishing for smallmouth and saugeye and very good catfishing. The Ohio river has some very good catfishing as well as hybrid striped bass and sauger.

Most of the lakes up here you would want a boat to fish them. I know Cowan up in Waynesville has boat rental (if you dont have access to your own up here) There is always some good crappie fishing there.
 

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I prefer Cowan. It's about 30 minutes or so up Montgomery Rd (22/3). Bass crappie, saugeye and muskie. Caesar Creek is a bit farther and west of 71. It doesn't work for me - I fish from am kayak and there are too many morons drunk and hauling ass across the lake without looking.
 

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Try fishing Pine hills lake...its a community lake in Mason costs $7 to fish no liscense needed. Good fishing for cats/crappie/maybe a few bass I think its a 6 cat limit so plenty for the grill or fryer!
Buy your ticket at the community center or police station
 

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What kind of bait and tackle should i use for cats?
The typical setup is a med-heavy 7ft rod with a sturdy reel strung with 20 lb test, rigged with a 2 oz sinker about 20" from a 2/0 or larger circle hook. There are tons of variations but you can't go wrong with that setup.

Cats are rather finnicky in my experience but when you find what they're biting on, it's a good day/night! Fresh cut shad is usually a great bait to start with though and seems to readily attract all of the big 3 (channels, blues, and flatheads).

I see your from the keys...a decent inshore saltwater rig would work just fine. And I was down Islamorada a few years ago and got skunked! Middle of summer though and I heard it's better in the spring or fall. Still would have been nice to see something on the end of my line...
 

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No need to worry much about that! you might run into a snag or two but for the most part the lake is fishable without problem. Chicken livers under a float work well. also we had a lot of luck with raw chicken breast coated with strawberry jello powder. Didnt think it would work when a friend gave me some but we slayed the channels with it!
My friends and I call Isabella "Lake no-nibbles" Its and old snag indian name lol!
Also look up Armco park. dont know much about it but its also in the mason area.
 
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