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Hey all you fishy folks!

Longtime reader, first time posting..

Let me start this off by saying that I grew up about a mile from the Scioto and have been fishing the watershed for almost 25 years now. I cut my teeth here and moved on to spend some years working as a fly fishing guide out west, but home is home.. So now I’m back, and over the course of the past few years I’ve been putting in some serious time on the scioto and it’s tributaries. On to my point..

The nearly non-existent population of native northern pike in the system has always intrigued me. I’ve had the privilege of crossing paths with these ditch dragons a few times but I’ve never been able to dial in a reliable strategy for targeting them.. I do know of 1 extremely small population that frequents a relatively small area, and have been wanting to speak with a biologist or someone from ODNR about them.

-Without divulging too much info!!!-

Has anyone else ever committed to targeting this rare and elusive species in the scioto or it’s tributaries? And if so, are there any anglers that would want to get out on the water and share some intel? I’m not looking to steal spots, I have more than I could fish in a lifetime.. I’m really just looking to compare notes and try to “crack the code”...

Again please, do not list any specific details here! This website is an incredible resource and I myself have spent many hours combing through these threads for bits of juicy info.. but as anglers the information learned from years of fishing these waters is YOUR priceless intellectual property and should be guarded as such. With that being said, if anyone wants to “join forces”, and put in some serious work this year, I have data to share..

Tight lines everyone!
- Josh
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You need to go upstream of the two Columbus reservoirs to get Pike in the Scioto. But there are some stretches with decent, targetable numbers of them. They tend to be small though, although most Ohio pike are.

edit: feel free to PM me if you want to talk about it in more detail. I’ve worked as an aquatic biologist at OSU for 3 years and helped out at the Museum of Biological diversity doing statewide fish distribution surveys leading to the creation of the new Fishes of Ohio Guidebook.
 

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You need to go upstream of the two Columbus reservoirs to get Pike in the Scioto. But there are some stretches with decent, targetable numbers of them. They tend to be small though, although most Ohio pike are.

edit: feel free to PM me if you want to talk about it in more detail. I’ve worked as an aquatic biologist at OSU for 3 years and helped out at the Museum of Biological diversity doing statewide fish distribution surveys leading to the creation of the new Fishes of Ohio Guidebook.
We probably know the same people - In addition to working in Fisheries, I worked for OBS for a number of years (back in the day).
 

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Discussion Starter #5
As a former guide, you should know that sometimes information is gonna cost you!
Hire a guide from Mad River Outfitters. They do Scioto pike on the fly.
Ya I’m all for supporting local shops but that’s not really what I’m looking for. I grew up about a mile from the scioto north of all the dams so I’m very familiar with the area and all of the water. just wanted to start a discussion and see if anyone else targets them or has much success.

I’ve filmed/put flys in front of pike the past 2 days in a row, now I just gotta find a fish that wants to actually eat ‍♂
 

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Yes, Support the local shop simply because they could easily go under as they are still closed. You don't need a full guide. Just take your flies in(when they re-open), strike up a conversation, tell them what is not working and where and they will be more than helpful.

Two things:
1. Buy a pike fly or two
2. No Youtube honey hole blowout please...just say'n
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yes, Support the local shop simply because they could easily go under as they are still closed. You don't need a full guide. Just take your flies in(when they re-open), strike up a conversation, tell them what is not working and where and they will be more than helpful.

Two things:
1. Buy a pike fly or two
2. No Youtube honey hole blowout please...just say'n
I’ve spoken with all the guys over at MRO about it in years past and they def recommended some things but nothing I wasn’t already trying.. I don’t doubt that they’re capable of finding them, just prefer to do the legwork myself! Also, I tie all my own flys so I’ll be supporting them once the doors re-open and I can go resupply on tying materials!

And don’t worry, I would never post a YouTube video of scioto pike, the videos are simply for documentation/species identification. I believe I’ve even located a small population of pickerel/pike hybrids.. if you’d like to see a photo just DM me!

Again, the purpose of this post was really just to gauge if anyone else targets them/would want to put some days in chasing them.. Just looking for someone that is as passionate about them as I am becoming!
 

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It had been mentioned, but this is on the southern reaches of their native habitat so if you are finding some nice, healthy individuals, that is great. I believe the old state record came from someone near the Dayton area which was very surprising considering their range the size they can reach with the forage base in northwest Ohio/Lake Erie.

I've targeted them in the past and sometimes catch them on a whim. I would definitely be willing to target them with you. We found a few pickerel in the Scioto abut 5 miles south of Columbus last fall with an OSU class. I know that East Harbor on Lake Erie also has some good sizes in the spring and can help find those as well if you're interested! It was thought they would leave East Harbor in the summer, but I had found them in 80 degree water surprisingly.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It had been mentioned, but this is on the southern reaches of their native habitat so if you are finding some nice, healthy individuals, that is great. I believe the old state record came from someone near the Dayton area which was very surprising considering their range the size they can reach with the forage base in northwest Ohio/Lake Erie.

I've targeted them in the past and sometimes catch them on a whim. I would definitely be willing to target them with you. We found a few pickerel in the Scioto abut 5 miles south of Columbus last fall with an OSU class. I know that East Harbor on Lake Erie also has some good sizes in the spring and can help find those as well if you're interested! It was thought they would leave East Harbor in the summer, but I had found them in 80 degree water surprisingly.
Thanks for the response Pike Stalker!

Over the last few years I’ve repeatedly seen some nice fish returning to the same areas to spawn, and they tend to stick around for some time. (I have some theories as to why they stick to certain areas but those are some details I’d like to keep to myself for now) haha

In the summer of 2018 I frequently encountered a pike that could certainly have been a state record contender.. Never got that fish to chase a fly but it’s something I’ll never forget. The other angler I was fishing with estimated the fish to be in the high 40” range and that was no exaggeration.. it likely didn’t have the weight to beat the current record at the time as it was post spawn and the fish was very slim, but seeing that fish gave me some real hope for scioto northerns!

Feel free to shoot me a DM or a text if you'd like to plan a day out, I live close so I’m usually on the water a few days a week!

Tight lines,
Josh
 

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have got a few in the north part of the river, Marion county, hardin county, I usually target them in the late winter early spring, floating rapalas worked down current so they will almost sit it one spot. The pike I have caught are usually tight against logs, or current breaks, I haven't seen one up here more than 30" they don't look like the pike you get up north. My buddy caught a couple one day south of prospect, I've never targeted them that far south, but they are there.
 
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