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nieten7642

Indiana/Ohio fishing... stinks?

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Hey guys!

I am new to this board and was wondering if some of you would give me your feedback on something. I have just recently gotten back into bass fishing again. I fished quite a bit as a kid/teenager, but quit when I was about 16 years old. Never had much success as a kid. Never really had a great mentor to learn from, but had a lot of fun with my younger brother. I am now 34 and just became obsessed with bass fishing again. Caught about a 4 pounder a few weeks back in a privately stocked lake. IT WAS AWESOME! I need a boat now.

My question is this: I frequently hear that Indiana is not terrific fishing for largemouth bass at all. I also heard on a tournament I was watching on TV recently some comments made about a pro from the "Ohio River Valley" area and how he was not used to catching many bass where he was from. Is it a myth that the Midwest is worse fishing than the South (Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisianna, Texas, Mississippi, Arskansas, the Carolinas etc.) and then again in the North (Boundary Waters, Minnesota, Michigan, etc.) or is there a reason fishing seems worse right here in the middle? How did Indiana and Ohio get such a bad rap... if they did? Do Indiana and Ohio anglers just stink? ;)

Another related question... If fishing is indeed worse in Indiana, how far do I have to go and in which direction before it gets a lot better? Missouri? Tennessee? I would love to not have to travel for forever for some amazing fishing. Thanks in advance guys!

Josh

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Welcome aboard!

Bass are bigger in the south and the water doesn't get hard in winter, but there is plenty of good fishing in your area much of the year.

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I don't know anything about the area up there, but welcome to the site!

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I'm from Ohio and I think the fishing here stinks too. I've been skunked the last 6 times out in a month and a half. Fishing was best back in June. The best I've done is 4 keepers in an 8 hour day. Much like you I fished as a kid (worm and bobber) and had no desire to as an adult. During the spring of 05' my son wanted to fish a friend's private pond so I took him. After a couple hours and a few bluegill my friend came out and showed us how to throw a Rapala original. We both caught bass and I was hooked. I spent a lot of time reading everything I could get my hands on about bass fishing and fishing the banks of local lakes the remainder of the year. In early spring 06' I bought a boat. The white bass are a blast in May. I realize that much of my frustration is because of inexperience. I've talked to many local anglers and they have had tough times this year too. When you get on forums like this and read about guys catching 20 or 30 bass in an outing then I have to believe that fishing in Ohio just plain stinks.  

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Welcome to the boards!  I live in Michigan now but was born and raised in NW Ohio (28 years).  There is no comparison between Michigan and Ohio.  Even when I was IN Ohio I would make long drives to Michigan to fish.  The closest waters of any size to me in Ohio were St. Mary's Lake and Indian Lake.  Let me tell you I hated them.  I only made it down to the big muddy river twice and do not look forward to going back.

I didnt get to the east side at all but I've heard Alum Creek isnt bad.  Supposedly there are some decent lakes around Columbus and toward Pennsylvania.

If you can find a pond/lake managed by the DNR/State fisheries I would fish those.  They hold fish up to 3 to 5 lbs and manage them well.  Most if not all the ponds are small and are electric only.  

If you get a big enough boat I would definately make trips to Erie.  It is a wonderful fishery.  There are some good lakes in Kentucky if you are from Southern Ohio and can travel to them.

I'm not fond of Ohio fishing if you couldnt tell, I love my Michigan fishing though!!!  Just wish the season was longer!!   As they say though, a bad day on the lake is better than a good day at work... unless you work on the lake of course!!

B

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I think Indiana has a bad image because of the lack of big bass waters.  But, the amount of gravel pits and ponds that people dont know about and arent fished much is amazing.  

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Thanks for the feedback, guys. Great information there. I will check out that Indiana Bass Federation site for sure.

The lake I grew up on was Chapman Lake in Warsaw, Indiana (http://www.chapmanlake.com/AboutLakes.html).

I could easily have gone all summer and not caught a single keeper. Sure, I there were a lot of things I could have done better (presentations, locations, etc.) and not having a boat with a motor certainly had something to do with it I'm sure, but all summer? That's pretty rough. Don't you think? Even for a kid I wasn't THAT terrible of a fisherman.

As a youngster I preferred throwing topwater baits (buzz baits, jitterbugs, etc.), but I often threw spinner baits and medium depth crank baits too. Didn't do as much with jigs and soft plastics though when I was young. LOVE them now, though. Caught my 4 pounder finessing a white 4" Power Grub with no weight in that strip mine lake I described earlier.

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Guest whittler

Just look in your backyard, one of the best smallmouth rivers in the state runs right through the center of Nobelsville.

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LOL... Sorry, brat. Didn't mean to offend.

I actually didn't say Ohio fishing stinks myself. I just heard announcers on the fishing show say it regarding a pro from the "Ohio River Valley" area. In fact, I think he was fishing The Rock in Missouri (might be mistaken about that) and he himself said he wasn't used to catching so many bass. He acted like a kid in a candy shop at that tourney the way he was catching fish. It was great. Just made me wonder if there really was something to this whole "bad fishing" in Indiana and Ohio thing. Wasn't sure why this would be the case, but just wanted to make sure. I am actually more concerned about Indiana than Ohio anyways, since that is where I am from.

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[table][tr][td]Just look in your backyard, one of the best smallmouth rivers in the state runs right through the center of Nobelsville.[/td][/tr][/table]

The White River? Really? Around here it has a pretty bad reputation for being disgustingly dirty and stinky, but it is a nice fishery? I had no idea. I've kayaked it several times, but never fished it. Perhaps I should try. Thanks for the tip!

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Welcome to the site!

Most of the TV stuff is based on big-water pro-tournament expectations, and if you live in a state with no big water, the guys with the huge bass boats who are used to roaming 2,500-acre lakes might be disappointed.

But small water can be great water. I live in eastern Mass., which is not exactly known as a bass-fishing mecca. Yet over the past few months, for example, in the ponds and small lakes I fish regularly I've caught everything from dinks to 6.5 pounders, and the 3s, 4s, and 5s are fairly common. My most productive pond is about 30 acres, and very few people bother to fish it. Because this pond is on no state list of hot bass sites, and because no one's  ever fishing there, I ignored it until this year, thinking it wouldn't be worth it. But because it is literally two minutes from my house, I figured I'd put a kayak into it and give it a shot, and, boy, have I been pleasantly surprised.

The point is that you'd be amazed how good bass fishing can be in spots ESPN would never look at. Get the maps out and look for any water you can find.

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Pretty much the lakes around my area (centerish of Ohio) are not too good. The action is in the ponds. The fish are normally really small, but it beats the lakes we have around here.

      So I would recommend fishing some ponds accasinally. BTW: Welcome!  

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I partially agree with Pond-Pro.  I have an aunt who lives in east Ohio who has a pond across the street from her house.  I have fished it a few times, and in those 3 times, Ive caught a total of around 50 bass, with the majority of them weighing 2.5-3lbs.  I am sure their are a few bigger bass in the pond, but it is tough to get to them due to the thick weeds all through the pond.  

 I have also fished Mosquito lake in eastern Ohio with the club Im in, and we usually do bad as far as weights go.  Never had a bag over 10lbs, and we usually fish the lake twice each season.  

I live in Pttisburgh and the bass size is bad here as well.  Biggest bass Ive caught this year was 5lb 4oz.

But I fish a lake that has had a 13lb bass pulled from it, which beats the Pa state record weight by 2 lbs.  

You just have to find a lake that isn't overfished, or maybe some sort of pay lake, or a lake that is closed on certain days.  Usually tthe fishing is alot better in those impoundments than your average lake.  Good luck on finding them though, loose lips sink ships.  Or ruin the good fishing for the few that know about the excellent fisheries.  

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I picked midwest because I do indeed live in ohio, but I would rather live here.  Erie has some big football smallmouth thats for sure... :)

Also the inland lakes have a lot of dinks but I have come accustomed to catching 12" fish, they are my dinks :).

Catching 10+ lbers seem sureal to me, I couldnt really amagine it.

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  I don't know about Indiana/Ohio fishing stinking but I do know about Ky.  We have some fine fishing both Lm and SM and also Hunting.   I don't know were in Ohio you are but several places in Ky are not to far to travel.

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