Grand Lake Bait

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.

Free Fishing Days

Many families took their youngsters fishing on Ohio's Free Fishing Days.

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 spring crappie fishing is on. Fishing pressure is evident around the lake as more fishermen appear to be taking advantage of the excellent pan fishing.  Bank fishing has been decent, but boat fishermen have access to many more hotspots where competition is with the fish and not the fishermen.


Indian Lake Report

Lakeside Pro Bass Shop reports that the fishing is excellent. The crappie fishing is still good but fishermen need to hunt for spawning fish. Milder weather is bringing the fishermen out in numbers.  Fishermen are using jigs and plastic tails. Wax worms and spikes are usually added to the combination. Pads are popular.


Lake Loramie Report

According to Spillway Bait and Tackle, fishermen are looking for and finding fish. More keeper crappies are showing up with some larger fish being reported. The areas around the 119 Bridge and the Luthman Bridge have produced some nice crappies. Bluegill fishing has also been good around the lake and is expected to improve.


May 27 2015

Outdoors with Forda Birds---By John Andreoni

It’s hard to believe that Memorial Day Weekend is here already. First of all, most of the ones I remember brought a lot of warmer temperatures with them. Of course, this Memorial Day seems to be a lot earlier than usual, and that’s true simply because of the calendar. This federal holiday is scheduled to fall on the last Monday of the month, and in 2015 we still have almost a full week remaining in May. When I was growing up, I always knew this holiday as Decoration Day. Established shortly after the Civil War, it was designed to honor soldiers who died while in service to their country by decorating their graves. It isn’t supposed to be a time to thank veterans for their service. On the other hand, I guess that’s a good thing to do any time. If nothing more, it’s politically correct.

For many, the original purpose of Memorial Day has become an afterthought. It’s a long weekend, a paid holiday, and a day off of work. In the process, Memorial Day becomes a time to get outdoors to enjoy activities associated with the season. Consequently, instead of honoring the fallen, people usher in the unofficial opening of the summer season. Times change, as do priorities, I guess. It’s not a question of right or wrong, it’s just the way it is. 

Regardless, the summer season is here, officially or not, and people will be taking advantage of it. For Lake St. Marys, that’s a good thing. The area has suffered ever since the first algae warnings were issued just before this holiday weekend back in 2009. The EPA knew of the problem in 2007 according to their own information but chose to release an algae advisory just days before Memorial Day. I never have figured out why they chose that particular time, but if one were trying to get the most bang for the buck, what better moment than right before one of the busiest weekends of the year. If that’s the case, warranted or not, it worked, and Lake St. Marys took a major hit to its $150 million dollar a year tourism industry.

Read more: Memorial Day Weekend
May 18 2015

Outdoors with Forda Birds---By John Andreoni

I’ve been around boats most of my life and have seen a lot of changes over the last 70 years. Obviously, when I was growing up, there weren’t the number of boats on area lakes that there are today. It was a different era, and owning a watercraft wasn’t high on the priority list. My father owned a number of small boats at one time or another, and mostly used them for hunting waterfowl. As he grew older, he decided that even owning a small rowboat wasn’t worth the grief. As he always told me, the happiest day of his life was when he bought his first boat, and the second happiest day was when he got rid of it. Evidently, there was just too much effort needed to justify the benefits. I do know for sure that he never owned an outboard motor in his life, and the first one I ever bought was the first one he ever used.

I started learning to row a boat when I was about eight. I could swim to his satisfaction, and that gave me a seat in a boat when we checked out the backwaters of Lake St. Marys prior to the fall waterfowl season. Those trips were my free boating course. I learned how to move around in a flat-bottomed boat, and I eventually became pretty efficient in maneuvering one in rough water. Of course, these boats were always rentals, and their quality questionable. Onboard safety equipment consisted of a scoop made out of a coffee can to bail out excess water. That was a continuous process in a hand-made wooden rowboat. What did you expect when the rental fee was .25 cents an hour. Occasionally, there would be another coffee can filled with cement and attached to a short piece of rope that acted as an anchor. There were no life jackets or flotation devices anywhere in sight. Indeed, it was a different era.

I spent some time in powerboats during the early 1950s. Personal outboards were starting to gain in popularity and along with the numbers came more regulations. Seat cushions were required as floatation devices; a fire extinguisher was soon to follow. My best friend’s dad, so he said, had the fastest run-about on the lake. It was a 14 foot-long Lone Star aluminum boat with a 25 horsepower Evinrude motor. He later upgraded to an 18-footer with a 40 horsepower Mercury but lost some speed. Another acquaintance had a 15 foot Lyman wooden lapstrake cruiser. He ran dual outboards behind that, both 15 horsepower.  If I recall, safety equipment was a common sense thing, and only when boating grew by leaps and bounds were corresponding regulations formulated. Buying a boat didn’t necessarily make one a boater, but most thought that it did.

Read more: National Safe Boating Week

Going Wild Book Series

Great gifts for the 'hard to buy for' outdoors person - just $15.95 each. Click to order your copies today! 
Choose Volume