Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Spruce Run Reservoir Northern Pike Fishing in the Cold

Temperature really dropped the hour before dark. Must have been 38 when we left the jetty at Spruce Run Reservoir off Van Sycles Road with stiff fingers, sore hands, and red cheeks. Despite the cold, we heard a chorus of peeper frogs. We saw no one else at all. Nice to be out, clambering on the stones and sand with bobbers set and live lining a shiner, retrieving it with jerks when it had expired. Usually at least one bobber (of five) will indicate if any fish are around, although I catch most by casting outward up and down both sides of the jetty. Fresh air for sure. It felt invigorating but also painful. We were dressed pretty light.

We've caught them when it's been cold in the past. On a snowy April afternoon, 35 degrees, I waded in the cove at Black Brook and caught a 17-inch largemouth. Most of what we've caught have been northern pike and many of these on very chilly days, pike our original motive in fishing here this time of year since 2005, the largest 33 inches. We've caught largemouth bass (Matt caught a 20 5/8-inch largemouth, plenty have been about 17), crappies (one of these over 15 inches and they're usually at least 13 and become available with warmer weather), surprisingly a 17-inch brook trout that looked like it had gone to sea, a steelhead brookie similar to sea-run brookies I caught on Gaspe Peninsula, plenty of smaller brown trout, and one channel catfish. We saw an eight-pound hybrid striper caught and have heard of others.

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