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Today was my first ever day fishing open water on Oneida Lake New York. Yes there are a few bodies of water in the Central New York area that I have not fished. Until today this was one of them. I have fished it through the ice a couple times but never open water.

I have been getting reports of the Walleye fishing on Oneida Lake being hit or miss. Some days guys have been crushing them and then getting nothing in the same spot the next.

Today I was fishing with my friend Mike Tankersly aboard his Lund boat. Mike fishes Oneida Lake regularly so I was excited to be out with him. We launched out of Oneida Shores boat launch. It was my first time at the launch and I was very impressed. I would recommend using it.

It turned out today was one of the miss days, although we did have some action. Shortly after we started fishing Mike caught a perch around 8 inches. Many places I fish this would be a keeper but anyone who has fished Oneida Lake for perch knows that this is a small one there. It wasn’t long after that I felt a hit on my black and purple buck tail jig. It was a nice walleye about 18 inches or so. As we continued our drift we noticed the boats around us where moving to other spots and not drifting back through the area we where in. We fished for a bit longer and then decided to do the same.

At our next spot Mike caught another perch, this one even smaller then the first. We both caught big small mouth bass. Another fish that Oneida Lake is know for.  I also managed to hook up with and land 2 pickerel. One of which was the smallest I have ever caught. I didn’t measure it as I wanted to get it right back in the water but I am guessing it went about 10 inches.

We only had a few hours to fish this morning so we quickly went and unsuccessfully tried one other spot before it started to rain and we decided to call it a day about a half hour earlier than planned. Overall I was happy with my first trip to Oneida Lake walleye fishing. After all my one walleye would be enough for dinner for my wife and I. Mike said next time would be better though so I can’t wait to get back out there and try it again.

 

 

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Float fishing with a center pin reel has become one of the hottest ways to fish for steelhead. It’s many advantages include precise depth and speed control along with a very natural and long drift. When fishing small streams many people believe there is no advantage for the pin due to the short drifts and shallow water that is commonly found on these waters. This is far from true.
These smaller waters often have small pools and short runs that are perfect for float fishing. The pin gives your the advantage of being able to precisely run your bait through each section of these pools and runs.
You will want to change your setup to match the water you are fishing. One problem with small waters is they often have over hanging trees and brush that can get in the way when fishing with the long rods normally used when pin fishing. There are to options you can choose from to fix this problem. The first is buying a second center pin set up with an eleven and a half foot rod. I like the St. Croix personally. However this is a costly fix especially if you don’t fish small waters all that often. The second option is to put your center pin reel on the nine and half to ten and half foot noodle rod you probably already own. This will cut down on the distance you are able to cast but on small streams it is not an issue.
The other setup change that will need to be made relates to the low clear water you will often be fishing in. The floats you normally fish on larger waters will often be to large. They will either make to much splash when entering the water or will easily be seen by fish due to the short leaders you will be fishing. I recommend get some floats ranging from 4 grams to 2 grams for fishing these streams. This will allow you to fish shorter leaders and cast quietly.
Don’t forget you may want to drop down to 4 pound leader material when the water is low and clear.

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