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Smallmouth on the Maumee

Discussion in 'Northwest Ohio Fishing Reports' started by Canoe, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. They're out there!

    My sons and I have had a great time on the river the last two weekends. Deer cross, herons are fishing, and the water is low and fairly clear. Spotted garpike cruisin the shallows too. We've landed 4 smallies and had a few others get away (still fun). Probably 3 total hours of fishing so far this year, but we're heading out there later today.

    Sidecut produces regularly for us. Looking forward to more adventures on the river.
     
  2. I went today and caught 5, but all small. I missed one good one last Sat. at buttonwood. Fish missed the popr. Still fun to see them smash on top of the water. I don't know where the big ones are hiding cause I'm having a hard time finding them. I need to stop being addicted to top water fishing and start throwing tubes or spinners once in a while.

    It's great to see the wildlife down there. One blue heron thought I was his best friend and pretty much stood right behind me while fishing. Should have seen him get excited when I caught one. There eyes freak me out. Deer was crossing from bluegrass to Perrysburg side. Also seen a huge bald eagle fully mature with a huge white head. Talk about graceful. Always something to see down there.:D
     

  3. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    Had about the same experience last Sunday. I went rock hopping @ Jerome Road for a couple hours, landed 3 small ones and missed that many more just off the rapids. Good fun on the light tackle, but no sign of big fish that night - save the carp. They were chasing small inline spinners for me that night, white, black, & motor oil.
     
  4. I have been addicted to the Maumee this year. It is my 1st year on the river. I make it up there at least once or twice every week. I don't keep any so I don't care what I catch. I have been having luck throwing a lite plain jig head with some worm on the end. I have taken 2 16" smallies and numerous cats. My dad, newphew and I went up Monday for 6 hours and we caught about 60 fish between the 3 of us mostly 8 inch cats but we did land some bigger ones including a 25" cat, 2 walleye (13" & 16") and a gar that just clamped onto the line and never let go??? That's what I love about it. You never know what you are going to catch.
     
  5. Just got back from the river. Spent 2 hours. 8 cats including a 26 1/2" cat (on a jig and worm). and 5 smallies. I just cast out a 4" green tube and cranked it in fast. Amazing night. Had 2 deer unexpectingly walk up on me about 10 feet away.
     
  6. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    Got out into the rapids at Jerome road again this afternoon for a couple hours. Only got 4 smallies, but all solid 1-3 lb fish. Couple not-so-good cel phone mug shots attached (I hope!:).

    I've never thrown tubes in my life until last week - learning something new. I was using the larger tubes with 1/4 oz rattle heads. Bigger tubes seemed to keep the dinks off. Had to throw right into the wash in the rapids - fish were dug in pretty tight - and the tubes seemed to work much better than my normal pile of twisters.
     

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  7. way to go doc, After seeing ohiobucks fish and now yours it's time for me to try some tubes. Have had good success on largemouth out by the lake with them. In the river, were you reeling them in constantly? I'm gonna try Sun. morning. After throwing some top water action I'm going to try green tubes.
     
  8. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    JimmyZ:

    I was fishing through the rapids with them upstream-downstream, just kinda bouncing them through the wash, bouncing them off the rocks, through the ambush points, with the moving water. Cost me a couple big hangups, but seemed to slide through a bit easier than my usual pile of twisters.
    Imagine they look a lot like cray-critters when they come bouncing through the rocks that way.
     
  9. MJS

    MJS

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    Got a nice 3 pounder on a plastic worm in the wash near Buttonwood on
    Sat. afternoon. There were a least 8 others fishing but I didnt see any other
    fish landed.
     
  10. Guess I'll continue on this thread...

    Son #2 caught his first smallie on July 1st and then a week later, morning of the 7th, he landed 3 (all in the 1-2 pound range). What a great time. I landed 3 myself that same morning, but Son #1 was skunked. It's a great thing to see the boys bonding and helping each other wade and find holes and talk about which bait to throw and how to throw it and really get to know the river. Can't get any better being a Dad.

    Anyway, our totals are climbing this year with most of our fishing taking place around Jerome road. We've had the river to ourselves for the most part and conversed with only one other guy who caught 3 cats under a bobber one evening.

    We're thinking of going up to the closed off, broken up bridge in Waterville. Near the park west of town. I can't remember the name. Looks like good wading and lots of holes to investigate for smallies. Will report in again soon.
     
  11. crappielooker

    crappielooker The Corn Chucker

    maan.. i still have dreams about those maumee smallies.. i had a great couple of years on the buttonwood access stretch..
    great catch doood.. :)
     
  12. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    Finally got free to get back down to the Jerome Rd area last night. Got 3 x 1-lb size fish in the rapids plus a few other river dwellers. Bites were twisters and small tubes, no joy on topwater.

    Others in the area doing well under a bobber ... might have to give in and grab some bait this weekend. Watched some 2" size bait bailing out in the main flow - got to where several tried to climb the rocks - herons were thrilled.

    Couple more years for me until the 'Dora' rig gets a real hook, can't wait! Not sure it's ready for the river, but bluegills beware!
     
  13. Went out for a couple hours on Saturday (July22) and we all 3 were skunked. The water had risen at least 12 inches overnight and it cooled off a bit. Yeah, not great weather for catching fish, but great weather for fishing.

    Actually got the missus down to the rapids with us and she loved it. Found out I have to include a chair in my tacklebox (for the missus). She loved how serene it was down there. Great light for photography, and always seems to be some wildlife within range of a lense.

    We'll head down there again this weekend (04/05 Aug) for fishing and photography and will report in again.
     
  14. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    Got out into the rapids for a couple hours this morning at first light - or at least as much light as there was through the rain. Looked like it was clearing when I left the house - oops.

    Got 3 smallies, 10" and a couple 14", plus a small flattie and a couple suckers for variety, all on light-colored twisters. No luck on darker colors or tubes.
     
  15. The morning was great! Out on the river a bit after 6am with my boys and the sun was coming up. The baitfish were jumping and the river was down low enough to wade across and never get my shirt wet. Great teaching moments for a dad as the boys are getting the hang of reading the channels and ripples and bubbles to locate likely spots to cast their baits into. We all hooked into fish, but I was the only one to land any and had three releases (12", 13" and 16") The big one was a blast as it swam between my legs and across my youngest's feet.

    We also went out in the evening also (7pm till dark) and I again was the only one of us 3 to land and release fish. Two more for the count (5 total for the day).

    This is our second year fishing together on the Maumee and from the beginning I've taught them nothing but catch and release with artificial lures (topwater, plastics, spinners, etc...). The boys have had to learn to deal with slippery river bottoms, lure hang-ups, backlashed reels (spincast), hooks jabs in the fingers, etc... They're starting to regularly catch fish and now are learning to respectfully unhook and release the fish as quickly as possible, to enjoy the fight of the fish when landing them, and to keep the river clean or cleaner than it was when they arrived.

    We've fished mostly between Jerome Rd and the 475 bridge with success. We've also had success in Waterville near the old delapidated (sp?) bridge west of town. I think we could find smallmouth just about anywhere on the river that we could wade safely.

    Looking forward to more days on the river throughout the summer...
     
  16. Man you guys make me think there actually fish in that river, lol. I was there (475/23 bridge) about two weeks ago with my kids for a couple of hours fishing from shore. The only thing i threw out were top water stuff, and no action. Then again I'm pretty new to fishin' (been fish with a bobber for the last 20 yrs and just realised that fish actually do bite actifical lures.) I pretty pumped up about fishin' right now but im finding out that 90 degree weather ain't the best to fish in. But anyways your stories make me want to go back to the river. Any suggestions? I just spent around $500 in gear and think i have a curse on my new rod and reel. I have tomorrow off and if anyone would like to join me and maybe show me a spot or two i'd be greatful. :eek:
     
  17. It's too difficult to explain where the holes are that we try to fish, but I can explain what we've been looking for.

    First of all you'll be getting a bit wet as you'll have to leave the shorline. The footing is very slick in any water that is less than 6" deep (plant growth on the rocks), so be careful... falling on the rocks is worse than simply getting wet.

    OK ... we haven't fished any of the "rapids"... yet.

    We look for the deeper water. For instance, saturday the river was low. The deepest areas I could find were roughly 3 feet deep. Some of the areas were larger and pool like (maybe 50 yards across). Cast into the pools with just about anything and work the lure as you would normally.

    We also try to find "flowing" channels (10ft wide and maybe 30 feet long) with a good steady current going through them. Look for the channels and let your lures just float along with the current. We've used all kinds of plastics, top water and spinners with success in both the pools and channels.

    Other signs to look for are baitfish jumping and wakes from fish movement.

    The mindset is very similar to going after largemouths in a lake. You have to go and hunt the fish, they won't come to you. Get on some old sneakers and clothes you don't mind getting wet and slimy (in case you fall). Think of it as fishing while you hike the river... hehehe.

    It's a great time for the kids. My oldest doesn't consider it a true fishing adventure unless he's soaked to the skin. We held hands and went straight through some of the "rapids" one afternoon, just left the rods on the bank and went for a "hike". I was looking for holes to fish in and the boys were trying to get me as wet as possible. It's a lot of fun being a 12 year old again!

    We have been releasing everything and we have at least 4 areas we know we can go to and catch fish and we haven't explored more than a couple hundred yards of the length of the river. Take your time, learn the river and enjoy the area. We're blessed with a truly great resource.


    Hope this helps...
     
  18. This helps alot, thanks. I'm sure I'll be posting a story tomorrow of all my stuff floatin' down the river, lol. :C
     
  19. Docjr

    Docjr 800 miles from Hatteras

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    That' a real good summary of what I've been up to - 'smallie hunting'. This is the first year I've really been able to get out on the Maumee. Most of the last decade was in the Finger Lakes, looking at very different fishing ... been fun trying to figure the Maumee out, covering different areas to find the holes.

    All I can add is that I've been looking what for are probably the 'typical' river spots for smallmouth - slow water next to fast water, with some depth - good ambush points. I also try to watch what's flying out of the rocks as I'm sloshing around & try to match baits.

    Appreciate the info in this thread & similar, has helped alot getting up to speed. Looking forward to trying topwater next time out.
     
  20. jmenchhofer

    jmenchhofer 'eye addict

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    Just out of curiosity, do I stand any decent chance of catching smallies out of the Maumee during the middle of the day? The reason I ask is because I have a meeting in BG next week and I would like to take the rest of the day off and stay up there to fish. Even if the fish aren't biting, I'm sure it would still be a good time to get wet and learn more about the river. ;)