A 15-pound laker--not a bad topper to mixed bag of fishing.
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New York State’s lower Niagara River and the surrounding water are packed with smallmouth bass that average well over five pounds each. But the area also boasts walleye, brown trout, lake trout, coho salmon, perch, catfish, steelhead and the much-revered king salmon.
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The region hosts an annual fishing derby, and fishing the shoals of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario will get you fish during any time of day.
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An early morning laker.
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Bright and early, but everyone was still ready to go. Getting on the water at 5am is common–sometimes even earlier than that.
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Lake trout tend to be relatively calm when you’re reeling them in–until they see the boat.
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Charter fishing guide and boat captain Frank Campbell, one of the region’s premier anglers, shows off a beauty. Fish in the 10-pound range are quite common, with Lake Trout and King Salmon pushing 20-pounds in late spring/early summer.
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We caught the bass mostly with tube jigs (except for this little guy). The salmon were caught on spoons, and Kwikfish lures were responsible for a mixed bag.
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Of course, from time to time, we’d see if live bait could get us anything.
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Spawn time.
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Another laker comes to the net.
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A 15-pound laker–not a bad topper to mixed bag of fishing.
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Fort Niagara, on the Niagara River’s eastern bank, was originally built as a French outpost, before falling to the British in the 1700s. It’s noteworthy to fisherman because the shoreline is filled with smallmouth and walleye.
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Even in notoriously temperamental May, the weather was consistently modest and the water was calm.
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Salmon doesn’t get any fresher than this.
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Near the famed Niagara Falls, Lake Ontario and Lake Erie offer some of the best fishing in the world–both in quantity and quality.

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