june high water

June high water calls for some adjustments in fishing tactics.

bluegills biting

Bluegills are biting at Indian Lake, Lake Loramie, and Lake St. Marys. An 11 inch bluegill was weighed in at Indian that weighed 1 pound, 6 ounces. Bluegills are mixed sizes, but big ones are available if you hunt for them.

Big Poles for Big Cats

A great day for catfishing. Fishermen rig heavy for big cats.

cottonwood time

Cottonwood seeds can be an aggravation to fishermen, but not if the fish are biting.

Big Channel

Six-fish winning weight for the April Catmaster tournament at St. Marys was 61.95 pounds. Big channel cat weighed in at 20.30 pounds.

St. Marys Crappies

Local angler Tony Aldora shows a couple of the Lake St. Marys crappies caught by him and Dan Dawson.

record catch

Doug Wehrley and Dean Smith caught this Catmaster tournament record at Lake St. Marys in 2013 with a 6-fish limit of over 65 pounds.

Grand Lake St. Marys Report

According to Grand Lake Bait & Tackle, the crappies are finished spawning but are still being caught in deeper water. Blue gills are still being caught. The biggest problem fishermen are facing is record high water. Fishermen need to adjust their tactics. Bank fishing has been good, but boat fishermen have access to many more hot spots.

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Indian Lake Report

Lakeside Pro Bass Shop reports that the fishing is still good but recent high water has moved fish around. The crappie fishing is decent but fish are off the spawn and need to be located. Fishermen are using jigs and plastic tails. Wax worms and spikes are usually added to the combination. Bluegills are finishing the spawn.

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Lake Loramie Report

According to Spillway Bait and Tackle, fishermen are looking for and finding fish. High water has forced fishermen to hunt for fish in new areas. The areas around the 119 Bridge and the Luthman Bridge have produced a few nice crappies. Bluegill fishing continues to be good. Fishing pressure has been steady.

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Jun 29 2015

Outdoors with Forda Birds---By John Andreoni

The July 4th weekend is usually considered the busiest time of the year for recreationists. Boaters, campers, fishermen, and more flock to popular areas to enjoy the outdoors. Although still carrying some of the negative vibes provided by the blue/green algae problem, Grand Lake St. Marys should have a lot of activity. More and more users have been returning to take advantage of the phenomenal fishing, and boaters of all types have increased in numbers. With Freedom Days festivities in Celina, even more boat traffic should be evident.

The same should apply at both Indian Lake and Lake Loramie. Although Lake Loramie isn’t known to be an outstanding boating lake because of depth and underwater structure, it is still a popular place to visit and will receive a lot of traffic over the upcoming holiday. Campers love the facility, there are countless pontoons cruising the lake, and the fishing always seems to be good if you’re not species specific. It is a user friendly lake with great land access. Indian Lake can be a zoo on a holiday weekend. Boating traffic can almost be oppressive. Indian picked up traffic from St. Marys during the algae scare in 2010, and now that Buckeye Lake is having issues, a larger Columbus crowd might likewise invade the area.

Regardless, an influx of people into a small area creates the potential for problems. Many of these issues will be boating related. Some will be caused by boaters not being considerate. Other conflicts will be caused by ignorance. Ultimately, the studies show that most serious boating accidents are alcohol related. When people have powerful, high-speed watercraft at their disposal, the accident potential is obvious. If having a good time is the plan, good judgement and common sense are sometimes left out of the equation. Add quantities of alcohol to the mix, and people get hurt or killed. At this point, I should simply say that you shouldn’t drink and drive a boat at the same time. That’s good advice, but probably won’t have much effect. Some people will have to learn the hard way, which is why we have law enforcement officers running around. Many boaters don’t care for the badge because it interferes with their summertime fun. A person might see it that way, but rules are designed to keep people alive, including those who break them. Maybe some of these officers don’t have the greatest sense of humor, but I’m sure that most of them have been around drowning recovery operations. None of those are laughing matters.

Read more: Busy July 4 Weekend on Tap
Jun 21 2015

Outdoors with Forda Birds---By John Andreoni

June, 2015 isn’t quite ready to take its place in the history books, but when it does, heavy rain is sure to be mentioned. I’m not much into weather records because measurements have to be taken at a specific point. The Lima Airport might measure an inch of rain while two inches might have fallen a mile away. Regardless, our local area is supposed to average approximately four inches of rain during June. A good guesstimation of the total amount of precipitation so far this month is well over 10 inches. Add that amount of rain to saturated soil and problems are bound to show up. And, they did.

I took a ride around the lake earlier in the week to take a look at water conditions, and the flooding was impressive. It has been worse, I’m sure, but I don’t think I can remember this much of a problem during June. High water affected State Route 127 close to Beaver Creek which has happened before. Prior to the rains, Lake St. Marys water levels had been maintained at agreed depths to help control main-lake and downstream flooding. I believe the level was to be kept nine inches below the cut at the West Bank spillway from October 15 through March 15. In spite of these efforts, the water was as much as 21 inches above the cut just a few days ago according to various news sources. That amount of extra water is difficult to deal with, especially when it shows up in a short period of time.

Regardless, I’m sure there was flood damage throughout the area both above and below the West Bank spillway. Fortunately, other factors didn’t come into play or it could have been worse. According to the weather prognosticators, a cold front passing through the area was supposed to keep much of the projected heavier rains to our south, including the remnants of a tropical storm that worked its way to the Ohio Valley. There also weren’t any sustained heavy winds to add to the problem. Wind seiches have been known to raise the waters of Lake St. Marys almost a foot during a 24 hour period according to Clarence Clark who wrote a definitive publication about Lake St. Marys that was published by the ODNR in 1960. With prevailing westerly winds, the east end of the lake might rise a foot while the west end would lose a foot in depth. The effect is similar to a storm surge experienced by coastal waters affected by large tropical storms. Such conditions contributed to the flood damage experienced by many lake property owners a few years ago. Although there is flooding now, it could have been worse with a few minor changes in the weather pattern.

Read more: High Water Poses Lingering Problems

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