Friday, January 20, 2017

Shore Fishing Lake Trout Severe Winters

The 10-day forecast offers no promise for any ice fishing. We wait and see what awaits beyond, and it won't surprise me if an arctic air mass presses down before March, at least creating another flurry of fishing activity through cut holes.

Ever since Joe Landolfi and I finally got in touch again, I've hoped that Mike Maxwell will get the chance to ice fish with me and the wunderkind. Maybe. Just not so soon, for sure.

This January seems to shape up as the first time I haven't fished the month in many years. It's possible I'll get out with my son on Sunday, or with Mike on Wednesday, but I am so crammed with stuff to get done, maybe not. Second to my job is family, and if I can do something with Trish on Sunday, this takes precedence over fishing with Matt...when he might not really be so enthused after getting skunked on Round Valley the last three times I've taken him there.

I'm interested in garnering a little evidence. Just a little at that. But lake trout do not always show up in shore catches, or at least some years they have very little. But those two super-cold recent winters when Round Valley Reservoir eventually froze as many as 18 inches thick, they got caught in spades.

Now, assuming a really severe winter does the trick, why is that? I would need equipment and time to measure differences in water temperature, which I assume would be different by slim margins during very severe cold, but this could miss the fact entirely, for all I know. That water is plenty cold right now, but it does take a lot longer before it freezes over than Lake Hopatcong, for example, which might feature ice a foot thick while the reservoir remains open. So variation in water temperature between cold and mild winters is a factor to at least consider, even though we're not regarding differences--I assume-- of many degrees.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Round Valley Reservoir's Fishing Organization Stocking More Trout

Round Valley Trout Association plans on stocking the reservoir with another 200 11 to 12-inch brown trout late in March, and we hope these fish will be accompanied by 100 golden trout 13 to 14 inches, as well as the remainder of whatever larger rainbows the Musky Fish Hatchery can supply.

The browns will exhibit RVTA 7 tags, and should be released, not that we have any jurisdiction over them, but we do have a moral purpose in mind, as ultimately we desire to learn something about their growing into trophy fish. Rainbows, on the other hand, typically die shortly after reaching 22 inches.

Club Recording Secretary, Zach Merchant, caught and released one of last year's browns I reported on early last year measuring 19 inches. This was many months ago. That is an impressive growth rate implied.

Any and all who have not joined RVTA, I encourage you to sign on, come to meetings, and learn something. If you're the sort who likes to make new connections with whom you share common purpose, the best route is to get involved in a club committee. You'll have new friends overnight.

Membership is only $25.00/year:

Monday, January 16, 2017

Bill in NJ Legislature to Allow Fishing from Paddleboards in Wildlife Management Areas

According to a frequent reader of this blog, Brian Falkowski, stand-up paddleboard fishing is recently popular in New York and Pennsylvania, but prohibited in New Jersey Wildlife Management Areas. He told me the U.S. Coast Guard considers a paddleboard a vessel when used outside of a swimming area, thus requiring a pdf, whistle, etc.

Falkowski got legislators to write a bill, now at the Agricultural Committee level, to allow use of paddleboards in WMA's. I've copied and pasted the bill into this post. I'm for the bill passing, because I see no reason to deny this freedom.

Link to list of NJ WMA's:

ASSEMBLY, No. 3989 

Sponsored by: Assemblyman  RONALD S. DANCER District 12 (Burlington, Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean) Assemblyman  DANIEL R. BENSON District 14 (Mercer and Middlesex)

SYNOPSIS  Allows use of stand-up paddleboards for fishing on lakes in wildlife management areas. 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT   As introduced.    


AN ACT concerning use of stand-up paddleboards on lakes in 1
 wildlife management areas and supplementing Title 23 of the 2
 Revised Statutes.  3
  BE IT ENACTED by the Senate and General Assembly of the State 5
 of New Jersey: 6
  1. a. Notwithstanding the provisions of any law, rule, or 8
 regulation to the contrary, the Division of Fish and Wildlife shall 9
 allow a person to use a stand-up paddleboard to fish on any lake 10
 located in any wildlife management area, provided the person 11
 abides by all other applicable federal and State rules and 12
 regulations.  13
  b. For the purposes of this section, “stand-up paddleboard” 14
 means a board that is thicker and longer than a traditional surfboard, 15
 designed to be operated from a standing or kneeling position, and 16
 propelled by using a long paddle. 17
  2. This act shall take effect immediately. 19
  This bill would allow a person to use a stand-up paddleboard to 24
 fish on any lake located in a wildlife management area, provided 25
 the person abides by all other applicable federal and State rules and 26
 regulations.  This bill defines a stand-up paddleboard as a board that 27
 is thicker and longer than a traditional surfboard, designed to be 28
 operated from a standing or kneeling position, and propelled by 29
 using a long paddle. 30
  This bill responds to a circumstance in which a stand-up 31
 paddleboarder was stopped on a lake in a wildlife management area 32
 by a conservation officer because regulations do not mention a 33
 paddleboard as a permissible fishing vessel on such lakes.  Kayaks 34
 and canoes are permitted, however.  But since the use of a stand-up 35
 paddleboard has not been clearly defined in regulation, it was not 36
 allowed.  This bill would correct that oversight.  37