Hot weather, lack of wind not ideal for fishing

Submitted Photo Wendy Coyde of Tonawanda displays her trophy fish caught while fishing with Cody Allen and Don Mullen during the Western New York Heroes event.

Depending on who you ask, walleye fishing on Lake Erie has been tough. For instance, this angler has been fishing at least three times a week, whenever the weather allows and I can get a crew.

Averaging two to three anglers per trip, we have been boating one walleye apiece for each trip lately averaging at least five hours. Included in that catch ratio is a hand full of sheep head an occasional yellow perch and a silver bass.

The weather has been H-O-T!

Wednesday we had wave action and ended up with three walleye and two perch. We opted to fish Thursday evening and found out two buddies limited out in three hours in the same place we normally fish on Thursday morning. Go figure. There have been some other positive reports.

Two weekends ago the Western New York Heroes were able to get out on the lake for a half-day of walleye fishing. Most every boat caught enough walleye to keep the heroes happy. That same weekend there were reports of good numbers of walleye coming in at Barcelona. Backing up that report was information that recently, North East has been seeing good numbers of walleye. Gerri Beiger at Bill’s Hook’s also had heard reports of walleye success west of Barcelona and west of Van Buren Point.

Submitted Photo Dan O’Brien displays his trophy fish caught while fishing with Cody Allen and Don Mullen during the Western New York Heroes event.

A good friend of mine, Captain Lance Ehrhardt, who passed away last year used to say that it is a tough walleye bite whenever there is a full moon and a lot of hot weather with no wind. He was right. Changing your starting time might help put a few extra fish in the cooler.

One report earlier in the week showed anglers’ success when they started fishing the night bite out of the Buffalo Small Boat Harbor. The anglers caught their walleye from 8-11 p.m. fishing in 50 feet of water near the Canadian border using worm harnesses.

Another option is to try bottom bouncing. This method employs a three-way swivel. Attach a 12-inch leader to the bottom with a lead-pencil type weight from 6 to 8 ounces.

On the other end of the swivel attach a worm harness with about a 6-foot leader and a night crawler. The main line from your fishing rod attaches to the remaining open spot on the three-way rig. Let out enough line until the weight hits bottom, then let out a couple of more feet of line — basic and often effective. Trolling speed is usually 1.3 to 1.6. You can also substitute non-diving stick baits for the harnesses. Incidentally most of our walleye have been hitting after 11 a.m. Popping small spoons off the down riggers while going through suspected walleye has put a few fish in the box when the bite is tough. That big migration of walleye from the Western Basin could arrive any day so be patient.


¯ The Sunset Bay Shoot Out will take place this year with mandatory health precautions as dictated by the health authorities going into effect. The captains meeting for this year’s event will be Thursday, July 15. Big Fish Friday will launch on July 16 with the weigh-in at 4:30 p.m. on the beach. The main event will take place on Saturday, July 18 with the weigh-in at 4:30 p.m. Due to the social distancing protocol the awards will take place on Sunday morning at Cabana Sam’s if possible. Jim Steel’s walleye tournament scheduled for August is likely with COVID requirements also coming into play.

The Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club annual walleye tournament has been officially canceled for 2020. This highly popular event annually usually takes place the first weekend in August for three days. The COVID-19 pandemic is the culprit. In addition, the VIP day which is usually scheduled for the first week in August has also been canceled for this year, due to the pandemic.


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