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The Morning Call, Allentown, Pa., Outdoors Column: Fish Report: August 1, 2008

August 1, 2008

By Christian Berg, The Morning Call, Allentown, Pa.

Aug. 1–Today marks the debut of a new format for the fishing report, which is now a two-part feature available both in the paper and on The Morning Call’s Web site.

Each week, I’ll give Lehigh Valley fishermen a summary of the region’s best bets in print, along with timely news and notes about the angling scene.

The popular local fishing summaries from our freshwater and saltwater tackle shop reporters will continue to be available in their entirety online at http://www.themorningcall.com/outdoors .

Freshwater highlights: Bass anglers should check out the Lehigh River and Lake Wallenpaupack for smallmouths and Mauch Chunk Lake for largemouths. Trout action remains good on the Bushkill, Saucon and Monocacy creeks, where fly anglers are enjoying good surface action with caddis patterns. Plentiful panfish are taking live bait at Leaser Lake and Lake Minsi.

Saltwater highlights: Surf fishermen at Rehoboth Beach, Del., are enjoying steady action for spot, kingfish and croakers, while boaters there are enjoying good daytime bluefishing and nighttime striped bass action in the Indian River Inlet.

Down at the New Jersey shore, things are fairly slow due to unseasonably cool water temperatures, but anglers continue to catch plenty of short fluke and good numbers of bluefish from six to 14 pounds.

Anglers looking for live bait in the Allentown area now have another option.

As I reported two weeks ago, Archery at the Glenn at 7 Auburn St. in the city decided to open a small bait and tackle department after the closure of Lehigh River Bait and Bow.

On Thursday, I received a phone call from Brian Glenn, the shop’s co-owner, who told me Archery at the Glenn now has a full line of manufactured and live bait, including Powerbait, nightcrawlers, leeches and minnows. The shop also has a limited selection of rods, reels and tackle items such as hooks, line, sinkers, bobbers, bait buckets and lures.

For more information, call Archery at the Glenn at 610-791-7665.

SHOP TALK

— FRESHWATER

Wallenpaupack Sports Shop, Hawley (570-226-4797): Anglers at Lake Wallenpaupack are catching lots of smallmouth bass around docks and weed beds…drifting large shiners working well…catfish in the 15-20 pound range are being taken throughout the lake…lots of pickerel are hitting spoons and spinners…one customer caught a 16-pound striped bass recently using live bait on a No. 8 hook…fish was caught at noon on a 90-degree day…anglers at Shohola Lake are taking bass up to 6 pounds on Yamamoto worms…Fairview Lake bass and trout are taking live bait drifted in the deeper water…trout anglers at Fairview also doing well trolling Thomas eels and Phoebe spinners…fly fishermen report good trout action on the Lackawaxen River using sulphur and caddis patterns.

Peck’s Pond Store, Dingmans Ferry, (570-775-7237): Corey says lots of pickerel being caught at Peck’s Pond…fish are taking live minnows fished below bobbers…new Powerbait minnows from Berkeley have been taking good numbers of bass at Peck’s…Corey says anglers are having success Jersey rigging them or tipping fire-tiger colored jigs with them…target bass around submerged stumps and the bridge pilings along Route 402…yellow perch at Peck’s have been hitting red and white spoons and red worms.

Four Seasons Sporting Goods, Jim Thorpe (570-325-4364): Brian says Beltzville Lake night fishing has been fantastic of late…bass, stripers and walleyes all being caught…one customer reports good striper action from midnight to 4 a.m….fish had alewives trapped up against the shore, and guy landed 30 stripers up to 41 inches during that time…this week’s bass tournament at Beltzville attracted more than 20 boats…winning bass was 3.66 pounds…the only thing that hasn’t been good at Beltzville recently is panfishing…plenty of trout left in local streams and the Lehigh River…Mauch Chunk Lake bass action consistent…numbers of fish are good, but getting a 15-inch keeper is tough…catfishing is good at Mauch Chunk also, with some channel cats and bullheads being taken…bass bite has been good at Tuscarora Lake…customer fished there on Sunday morning and landed more than 20 bass, including a dozen keepers…biggest fish were 21/2 pounds, taken on spinnerbaits.

Willie’s Bait & Tackle, Cementon (610-261-2767): Willie says Lehigh River smallmouth fishing is excellent…medium shiners, leeches and Yamamoto worms working best…a couple trout are being caught in the deeper holes and around creek mouths…catfishing in the river are biting at night…plenty of bass, crappies, pickerel and bluegills being caught at Leaser Lake…trout action good in Bushkill Creek…Mauch Chunk Lake bass reports are good…walleye bite steady at Beltzville Lake.

Backwoods Angler Guide Service, Bethlehem, (610-868-9349): Blaine Mengel says Delaware River is 4.5 feet at Belvidere gauge…water is clearing and receding, with temperatures in the low 70s…smallmouth bass are spread out across the river, with no clear pattern…soft plastics such as tubes and shad imitations working well…fish slowly along the bottom…also look for fish around pods of shad fry…main stem of Susquehanna River producing a decent smallmouth bite early and late in the day on topwater lures…at mid-day, use stickbaits and tubes around submerged ledges.

Mike’s Bait & Sports Shop, Nazareth, (610-759-2905): Mike says bluegills Lake Minsi…Delaware River smallmouth bite has slowed down a bit, but better reports are coming from the Lehigh River…Tiny Torpedoes, popping Rapalas working well…small caddis on Bushkill, fly fishermen doing OK with them…Mauch Chunk Lake bass action is good…anglers aren’t getting a lot of big fish, but numbers are plentiful…live bait seems to be working best.

Klotz’s Bait Shop, Hellertown (610-838-7970): Rob Weaber of Bethlehem caught a 201/2-inch, 21/2-pound brown trout from Saucon Creek on a butterworm…Joel Nichisker of Bethlehem caught a 20-inch, 3-pound brown trout from Monocacy Creek on a mealworm…Justin Rivera of Bethlehem caught a 17-inch, 21/2-pound largemouth bass from the Grist Mill pond in Hellertown on a rubber worm…trout action remains good in the Saucon and Monocacy creek…butterworms working well…bass taking live bait at Lake Towhee and the Grist Mill ponds in Hellertown.

Nockamixon Sports Shop, Quakertown (215-538-9553): Catfish and bass are biting at Lake Nockamixon…water is fairly murky…best baits for catfish are nightcrawlers and chicken livers…bass are hitting Rapala crankbaits in five to 10 feet of water, with a few fish taking surface plugs as well…Bruce Kulp of Quakertown caught two big hybrid striped bass close to 10 pounds this week…best striper action seems to be mid-day right now.

Point Pleasant: Capt. John Brackett of the Queen Mary (732-899-3766) says bluefishing has been good most of the past week…plenty of fish from six to 14 pounds are being taken on both jigs and bait…when conditions are good, clients on the boat have as many as half a dozen fish on at any given time.

North Jersey: The Tackle Box in Hazlet (732-264-7711) Fluke continue to be caught in Sandy Hook Bay, but most fish are shorts…keepers are being caught in 50 feet of water and around Shrewsbury Rocks…weakfish and porgies have finally shown up…weakfish are being caught in the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers, and porgies are being found in Reach Channel.

Leonardo: Capt. Michael Yuro of the Freddy C (908-601-9790) says fluke fishing continues to be very good, with keepers up to 11 pounds mixed in with plentiful shorts…Monday and Friday fluke and sea bass combination trips have been producing good numbers of both species…sea bass and fluke being found around rock piles…lots of striped bass and bluefish being caught at night on bunker…stripers up to 30 pounds caught during the past week.

Little Egg Inlet: Scott’s Bait & Tackle (609-296-1300) Scottie says fishing is poor right now…unseasonably cold water has just turned the fish off, and even the crabbing is lousy…there was a little activity this week on Little Egg and Garden State reef sites, where some fluke are being taken…shop is hoping that signals a start to summertime fluke fishing in the ocean…tons of short fluke are being taken in Great Bay, but boats are working all day to land a single keeper…brown sharks up to 50 pounds and sand sharks up to 15 pounds are being caught at night.

Seaside Park: Betty & Nicks Bait & Tackle (732-793-2708) Bluefishing is decent and lots of fluke are being taken from boats and the beach…most fluke are small, but about 30 percent are keepers…bucktail jigs and Gulp bloodworms working…crabbing is fantastic in the back of the bay…a couple scattered weakfish reports, but no consistent action yet.

Ship Bottom: Fishermen’s Headquarters (609-494-5739) says there no great action to report, due mainly to the fact that local water temperatures remain unseasonably cool…fluke, weakfish, small bluefish and blowfish are being taken in the bay…things have been quiet on the oceanfront.

Beach Haven: Beach Haven Charter Fishing Association (www.fishbeachhaven.com) says local charter captains have been battling unseasonably cold water temperatures and uncooperative weather to produce decent catches for their parties…Capt. Adam Nowalsky of the “Karen Ann II” has restricted his fluke fishing to the bay waters where temps are higher…Capt. Dave Wittenborn of the “Arlene Ann” fished the Garden State South Reef one day and had a steady pick of sea bass, fluke and ling…all were caught on Gulp minnows and peanut bunker…Capt. Dave Kreines of the “Sweet Baby” had the Farley family out and picked away on some fluke and some nice sea bass at the Garden State South Reef…they also found a school of 8-10-pound bluefish on a local wreck…Capt. Bob Gerkens of the “Hot Tuna” reports excellent action on 8-10-pound bluefish on the Barnegat Ridge.

Rehoboth Beach, Del.: Old Inlet Bait & Tackle (302-227-7974) says surf anglers are catching plenty of spot, kingfish and croakers…everything is hitting fake bloodworms and small pieces of cut bait…Indian River Inlet is producing shad and bluefish during the day on incoming tides…shad darts and small bucktails working well…at night, stripers are biting in the inlet…stripers and flounder taking live spot in the back of the bay.

cberg@mcall.com

610-778-2252

—–

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