October Fishing Sessions: 10/04 - Flathead Fishing at Kelly Drive (non-tidal Schuylkill River)

Hello, Readers!

After a little bit of effort, I've finally finished my September Fishing Sessions on the Blog! I've also uploaded a few more photos on the EPF Facebook Page. Just a reminder: even though I didn't post any fishing sessions on the Blog during this last Summer, I did post all photos on the Facebook Page. Enjoy!

Also, I have recently updated my Introductory post on Meadow Lake in South Philadelphia (FDR Park). With a little bit of research and some contributions (thank you, Visal!), I was able to confirm the existence of Flathead Catfish in Meadow Lake. For more details, you may click here for the post. 

Now, here's my short fishing report for October 4th:

--- October 4th, 2014 ---

Location: Schuylkill River (non-tidal)
Time: 1:30-5:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- None

In my mind, the ideal time for a good Flathead session would be from dusk to around midnight. Once it gets dark, they really go crazy on your bait! Heh. Unfortunately, I haven't had much time for night time sessions, not to mention that fishing by oneself after dark poses some dangers, socially speaking.

Thus, I went for a short Flathead session on Kelly Drive during day time. The second "unfortunately" comes now: I didn't have the best bait for the occasion, which would be live bait. Therefore, I had to use frozen cut bait. Even with the odds against me, I still went out there to give it a try. As my father used to tell me when I was a little kid: "hoping is always a part of fishing." 

After 3:30 hours, I got skunked. Not a single bite! Heh. Sometimes we catch, sometimes we don't. 
   
A nice view of the Girard Ferry Bridge on the non-tidal Schuylkill River.

Best of luck for all of us!

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

Hello, Readers!

After a little bit of effort, I've finally finished my September Fishing Sessions on the Blog! I've also uploaded a few more photos on the EPF Facebook Page. Just a reminder: even though I didn't post any fishing sessions on the Blog during this last Summer, I did post all photos on the Facebook Page. Enjoy!

Also, I have recently updated my Introductory post on Meadow Lake in South Philadelphia (FDR Park). With a little bit of research and some contributions (thank you, Visal!), I was able to confirm the existence of Flathead Catfish in Meadow Lake. For more details, you may click here for the post. 

Now, here's my fishing report for October 1st:

--- October 1st, 2014 ---

Location: Wissahickon Creek (East Falls)
Time: 2:00-5:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 5 Redbreast Sunfish
-- 1 Largemouth Bass
-- 3 Smallmouth Bass
-- 2 Rock Bass

The Wissahickon Creek has never disappointed me when it comes to Fall fishing! Through trial and error, over the years, I was able to pin-point the best Wissy locations for fishing during Fall time. In common words, those locations would be what anglers call "fishing holes."

Every time I go to the Wissahickon Creek at East Falls, I start right next to the Wissahickon Transfer Center, I don't waste any time -- I just walk along the Creek, from hole to hole, all the way to the beginning of Forbidden Drive. I fish every hole for about 10-20 minutes and move on.

Therefore, all the fishes cited above were caught between the mouth of the Wissahickon and the beginning of Forbidden Drive. Most of them were caught on small 1/64oz. jigheads with either trout magnets or "Gulp! Alive Minnows," with the exception of the Bass. The Smallies and Largemouth were caught on 4 inch wacky rigged Senkos on a size 2 hook. Photos are below:


"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" It's too small for you folks to see, but this photo shows a small type of ant carrying a dead spider!

First fish of the day: a small Largemouth Bass on a wacky rigged 4" Gary Yamamoto Senko.

A nice-sized Redbreast Sunfish from the Wissy! Note that they are very abundant in the Wissahickon Creek (and in other Creeks around the area as well).

A small and fat Rock Bass. It was caught on a Shad "Gulp! Alive Minnow." 

The water level in the Wissahickon Creek was extremely low. We seriously need some rain, folks...

This set of rapids used to be a wonderful spot for Trout Fishing with in-line spinners; however, it was way too shallow to hold fish due to the lack of rain.

Here's another good location for Bass and Trout. The rock formations are beautiful, aren't they? :)

Little greedy Smallie bit on a 4" Senko. This fella was my smallest one of the day.

And finally, here's a proper "Wissy Smallie." The beautiful coloration on the fish portrays the environment it lives in: low saturated water with plenty of diffused oxygen. Any ideas where the "Bronzeback" nickname came from? Heh.

Best of luck for all of us!

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

Hello, Readers!

Here's my fishing report for September 27th:

--- September 27th, 2014 ---

Location: Upper Cooper River/Wallworth Lake (Haddonfield, NJ)
Time: 9:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 1 Bluegill X Green Sunfish Hybrid
-- 1 Pumpkinseed
-- 5 Bluegill
-- 7 Black Crappie
-- 1 Yellow Perch
-- 25 Largemouth Bass
-- 11 Gizzard Shad

I usually like to tell my fellow anglers that size is not everything when it comes to fishing. Of course size is important: I believe that at a certain point in life, anglers have all experienced that punch of adrenaline when fighting a "trophy" fish! You know...that wonderful moment when you get all shaky? For a Multi-Species angler, it's not so different! That punch of adrenaline can easily come in while reeling in a rare Species of fish or a surprise catch! I remember very well when I first caught a Common Carp; a Channel Catfish; and even a Banded Killifish, a Common Shiner, and a Warmouth -- and man...I was shaking back then, over and over and over again. Heh. It's an awesome feeling, isn't it? I truly believe that this "shaky feeling" is one of the aspects that makes fishing unique. If you are reading this and you are not an angler, I highly recommend you to get a pole and hit your closest body of water! It's at moments like these that I like to quote Robert Altman: "You put that line in the water and you don't know what's on the other side. Your imagination is under there."

But anyways...when it comes to Multi-Species fishing, there are a couple locations that I'm very fond of. Most of these locations are able to produce 5-10 different Species of fish in a single fishing session! It turns out that the Upper Cooper River and the Wallworth Lake in Haddonfield are some of these fond locations.

The plan was to tag along with my friend Bryan K.L. and catch some fish. I started by introducing him to the Upper Cooper River, and later we moved to Wallworth Lake. I was quite happy to see that my friend Bryan was enjoying not only the fishing, but the environment as well (there are a couple photos of him below). As cited at the beginning of this post, I was able to catch 7 different types of fish around the area.

Photos of the session are below:

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" A Blue Jay wandering close to Hopkins Pond, Haddonfield.

My first fish of the day: A Black Crappie on a float-jig setup. 

This one was my biggest Black Crappie of the day, surprisingly caught on a Thomas Gold/Nickel in-line Spinner at the Wallworth Lake. The fish was safely released above the falls. :)

A healthy male Bluegill from the Upper Cooper River. It was caught on a small Gulp! Alive Minnow, hooked on a 1/64 oz. jighead.

Here's a Bluegill from the Wallworth Lake, right below Evans Pond.

A beautiful Green Sunfish X Bluegill Hybrid from the Wallworth Lake. Note that it has "Bluegill traces" on its Operculum and "Green Sunfish traces" on its Anal and Caudal fins (yellow/orange coloration).

My friend Bryan K.L. with his trophy catch of the day -- a trophy Largemouth Bass from Wallworth Lake. Sarcasm aside, that smile is golden, though. :) 

While fishing for Largemouth Bass with my in-line spinner, a couple Gizzard Shad tagged along. It just so happened that they were having their Fall run; thus, gazillion Shad were just swimming around the Wallworth dam. It was nearly impossible to not snag them.

The first of 25 Largemouth Bass. Most of them were caught in the Wallworth Lake. The hypothesis is that they were following their "food supply" around (a.k.a. Gizzard Shad). 

Another Largemouth Bass -- this one with a beautiful lateral line. Note that I released all the small Largemouth Bass above the dam; therefore, there are 25+ Largemouth Bass between Evans Pond and the Upper Cooper River now. Heh.

This fella was one of the biggest Largemouth Bass of the day! 

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" A very very suspicious needle at the Haddonfield PATCO station.

A nice Pumpkinseed decided to go after my in-line spinner at Wallworth lake.

A nice scenic view of my friend Bryan K.L. focused on catching the big one.

A nice view of the second dam that divides the Wallworth Lake and the Upper Cooper River.

Here's a Yellow Perch from the muddy Upper Cooper River. Note its faded colors, which is typical for a fish living in high saturation waters.

Hope you guys found this report informative. Also, if you have never tried before, I would definitely recommend Multi-Species fishing! :)

Best of luck for all of us!

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

September Fishing Sessions: 09/21 - Catfishing on the Schuylkill Banks

Heya, Blog Readers!

Here's my short fishing report for September 21st:

--- September 21st, 2014 ---

Location: Schuylkill River (between Walnut and Chestnut bridges)
Time: 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

Fishes caught: 

-- 3 Channel Catfish
-- 1 Bluegill

Since I always fish the Schuylkill River between the Walnut and Chestnut bridges, there isn't much to say. I did a regular Catfish fishing session with my friend Jimmie D., and thankfully we both ended up with some Channel Cats! Jimmie caught all his fish on chicken liver (godly, but horrible smelling bait), whereas I caught mine on cut bait.

During the afternoon, I tried a little bit for different Species of fish without much success. Ultimately, I landed one Bluegill and used it as bait! I was actually expecting to catch some White Perch or Spot Croaker; however, no signs of them. For those who are not familiar, small Spot Croaker swim up the Schuylkill River during each Fall; therefore, they can be caught on the bottom with nightcrawlers! Neat, right? If you want to know more about that, feel free to use the search tab above the page. I'm sure you will find some photos of Spot Croaker caught in the Schuylkill River.

The photos for the session are below:

Here's my friend Jimmie D. with a Channel Catfish. The fish was caught on a piece of yummy chicken liver! Just as a curiosity: I've used so much chicken liver as bait in my life that I've been traumatized by its awful smell and texture. I hardly eat chicken liver nowadays. Hah.

A healthy Bluegill from the Schuylkill River! They are one of the best cut-baits around. The Catfish love them.

After a little while, the biggest Channel Catfish of the day came up: a 5lber! This fella was caught on a piece of Bluegill tail.

Another hearty Channel Catfish from the Schuylkill River. also caught on cut-bait.

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" A Housefly munching so good on your hand that it doesn't even feel bothered to pose for a photo! Truth be said -- they love that fish slime...
 
Best of luck for all of us!

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

Hello, Readers!

Recently, I've been doing minor updates on the Blog, including the introductory post on the Pennypack Creek in Northeast Philadelphia. The hyperlink is under the "Introducing..." tab on the right side of the page; though, I'll leave a link here to make things easier. Here are the main updates on it:

1. I added a map of the Pennypack Creek from Google Earth and divided it into 3 different sections: Lorimer Park, Pennypack Park, and tidal Pennypack.

2. I added a few more Species and photos to the Pennypack Park section of the Pennypack Creek (i.e. White Sucker, Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout, etc).

3. I gathered and compiled a couple photos from close friends, addressing rare catches in the overall Pennypack Creek. Many thanks to Bryan KL, Karl H., Peter S., Billy F., and Don G. for their contributions!

And now, here's my fishing report for September 19th:

--- September 19th, 2014 ---

Location: Delaware Canal/Buck Creek (Yardley, PA)
Time: 12:00-5:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 2 Redbreast Sunfish
-- 1 Common Carp
-- 2 Bluegill
-- 2 Largemouth Bass

As I have cited previously in my Facebook Page, this year I took a good amount of my Summer season exploring new bodies of water in the far Northeast Philadelphia, close to the Delaware River. During the months of May-July, I wandered through Bristol, Yardley, Levittown, Falls Township, and I went as far as West Trenton in New Jersey. I could name here all the bodies of water that I've explored this Summer, but I decided to just do a map for better visualization, which is posted below:

A Google Earth map of the Northeast Philadelphia. Creeks are identified as colored lines and Lakes/Ponds/River are identified as colored circles. In this post, I'll be talking about the black line, which corresponds to the Delaware Canal, and the gray line, which corresponds to the Buck Creek. You may click on the photo for a better magnification.
 
From May to September, I did a couple of Multi-Species fishing sessions in Yardley's section of the Delaware Canal, including a portion of the Buck Creek. Despite its looks -- saturated and shallow, I caught a huge variety of fish in it: Redbreast Sunfish, Bluegill, Green Sunfish, Pumpkinseed, Golden Shiner, Brown Bullhead, Largemouth Bass, Common Carp, Chain Pickerel, etc. Note that the Delaware Canal is one of the few places around Philadelphia where you will be able to actually catch a PA Chain Pickerel (my first PA Chain Pickerel came from the canal). I'll eventually do a full introductory post on the Delaware Canal one day. For now, the photos of my catches in the Delaware Canal and Buck Creek can be seen on my Facebook Page's albums.

As I arrived on September 19th, I noticed that the water levels in the Canal were extremely low! I was quite frustrated, to the point that I made two small videos showing a measured 5 foot difference in water level! After a little bit of "googling," it turned out that a pump was broken in the upper Delaware Canal; thus, not enough water was getting down to Yardley.

The low water levels made fishing difficult and easy (what an oxymoron, eh?). On one hand, it was difficult to fish in the canal because 90% of the spots were shallow and lifeless. On the other hand, it was easy to catch fish because it was easy to locate them! In other words, I already knew that all fishes would be concentrated in the deepest spots in the Canal. On the further hand (not that we have 3, heh), it was hard to catch those fish because their wariness was still top notch due to the shallowness of the place. There were deep spots compared to other spots; however, the deepest portion of the Canal was still shallow!

In the end, I was able to pull a couple fish from both the Delaware Canal and Buck Creek. It required quite a lot of walking, but I believe that it was worth it! The Common Carp and Bluegill were caught on a piece of nightcrawler. The Redbreast Sunfish were caught on a Thomas Nickel/Gold in-line Spinner, and the Largemouth Bass were caught on Gary Yamamoto Senkos, whacky rigged on a 5/0 Gamakatsu hook. 

Photos of the session are below:

The photo portrays the Delaware Canal at Yardley, with very low water levels. Note that the green grass marks the regular water level for the Delaware Canal.

A Redbreast Sunfish from Buck Creek, caught on an in-line spinner (one of my favorite lures for streams).

This little fella came up by surprise! It bit on a full nightcrawler, on the bottom. My first Common Carp from Buck Creek, and it's a pleasure to say that "they are there."

A nice sized Bluegill from the Delaware Canal. The background on the photo actually shows one of the deepest spots in the Delaware Canal at Yardley. 

Another sad photo of the low water levels in the Delaware Canal. As mentioned above, the green grass marks the regular water level for it.

After a lot of walking, the first Largemouth Bass of the day finally came up on a wacky rigged Senko! The little fella was hiding under lily-pads.

The other Largemouth Bass came from under the bridge -- another deep pool in the Delaware Canal.

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:"  A messed up Great Blue Heron (note the feathers) waiting for a nice meal.

"Things that you don't see when you stay at home:" Not one, not two, not three, but four does at the Delaware Canal! It was a beautiful sight.

More fishing sessions will be coming soon. :)

Best of luck for all of us!

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

September Fishing Sessions: 09/07 - Multi-Species Fishing at the Pennypack Creek

Hello, readers! 

Here's my fishing report for September 7th:

--- September 7th, 2014 ---

Location: Pennypack Creek
Time: 2:30-4:30 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 2 Creek Chub
-- 1 Redbreast Sunfish
-- 1 Pumpkinseed
-- 1 Smallmouth Bass
-- 1 Rock Bass

I don't know exactly when it happened, but visiting the Pennypack Creek one month prior to the PA Fish and Boat Commission's Fall Trout Stocking became kind of a ritual for me. I mean...Trout fishing is certainly a lot of fun; however, let's not forget that fishing for the "natural" Species of fish in Approved Trout Waters is also fun! Those Species of fish are usually an angler's reminder of how healthy a body of water is, even without the stocked Trout! In other words, they are the sign that the Creek holds a rich aquatic biodiversity, despite of the private Trout stockings.

I fished the Pennypack between Roosevelt Boulevard and Bustleton Avenue, finishing with 5 different Species of fish in a matter of 2 hours. They were caught either on nightcrawlers or trout magnets on a 1/64 oz. jighead. Photos are below: 

After locating a school of small minnow-like fish, I decided to micro-fish! I tied a #26 hook, finishing with 2 young Creek Chubs on a sliver of nightcrawler. Notice the golden pattern on its lateral line -- beautiful, eh? =)

The Pennypack is well-known for its different Species of Sunfish. Among them, the Pumpkinseed is pretty rare, not to mention that it's itself a beautiful fish (and a very good pet for a fish tank).

As always, a Redbreast Sunfish from the Pennypack Creek! 

Here's a Rock Bass, caught on a trout magnet on a 1/64 oz. jighead. They can be found around structure, specially close to rocky areas.

This little fella is probably one of the smallest Smallies that I've ever caught in the Pennypack. Even so, as I always say: small fish are a great indicator for good natural reproduction! So, there we go! 

For a full list of Species in the Pennypack Creek, you may click here for my introductory post on it (it's up to date now). Enjoy!

Best of luck for all of us,

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.

September Fishing Sessions: 09/06 - Philly Fun Fishing Fest on the Schuylkill River

Hello, Readers! 


As cited in a previous post, all of my fishing sessions will be posted as individual posts henceforth. The main objective of doing so is to "facilitate" the use of the search engine on the Blog (the little search tab on top of the page).

Also, please take in consideration that my time is still very limited due to college (this is my last semester at Temple University). Thus, I still have a lot to catch up. The plan for now is to post all my fishing sessions from September to November, and then work on new informative posts for the Blog, fix old posts (i.e. finish my post on Northern Snakeheads), etc. I'll try to upload one fishing session every 1-3 days. So, bear with me. :)

--- September 6th, 2014 ---

Location: Schuylkill River (between Locust and Chestnut streets)
Time: 7:00-11:00 a.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 1 Striped Bass

Before anything else, I would like all readers to know about the "Philly Fun Fishing Fest," which is an annual fishing derby provided by the Philadelphia Water Department, the SRDC (a.k.a. Schuylkill River Development Corporation), and other local organizations. I've consecutively participated in the competition for the past 3 years, since 2011. Take note that this is a free event, not to mention that a fishing license is NOT necessary during the time of the derby! For more details on it, you may access my posts for the Philly Fun Fishing Fest 2011, 2012, and 2013:

Philly Fun Fishing Fest 2011 (October 8th) --> won a prize through the raffle.
Philly Fun Fishing Fest 2012 (September 8th) --> conflict with 2012 Fish-A-Thon.
Philly Fun Fishing Fest 2013 (September 7th) --> won for most fish category.    

For the 2014 Philly Fun Fishing Fest, I spent most of my time talking to folks. So, more talking than fishing! I had the pleasure to see my friend Eddie Stone participate AND win a prize at the competition. Same for my friend Jose N. -- a fellow who won many of my Catfish Tourney Series. I also became friends with some other folks, including my now good fishing friend Bryan KL (this one got the fishing fever lately. Heh).

The action was considerably slow in comparison to previous years; however, folks still caught their fair share of Channel Catfish! Other Species of fish included small Striped Bass, 1 small American Shad (won the category of smallest fish), very few White Perch, some American Eel, and few Sunnies.

I finished the day with 1 small Striped Bass (no photo), which I was confident that it was going to win me the "smallest fish" category. That was until a kid pulled a 3 inch American Shad on a piece of nightcrawler. My hopes were shattered then...hehe.

Photos of the event are below:

The crowd competition between Locust and Walnut streets. My friends Eddie and Bryan are somewhere between the mix.

After the event, the winners for each category were announced. Also, the event holds a raffle system each year; thus, everyone has an opportunity of walking out of the event with a small prize! 

Don't be sad if you missed the 2014 Philly Fun Fishing Fest. There's always a next year! If you are willing to participate in the 2015 Philly Fun Fishing Fest, just keep in mind that it usually happens around the months of September-October. You may subscribe to the SRDC mail-list for news on the event, or just google "2015 Philly Fun Fishing Fest" around the month of August.

Best of luck to all of us,

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,

Sincerely,

Leo S.