Discover Sun-sational Lake Erie Walleye Fishing Fun from the Deep-Water Ports in Chautauqua County, NY

Category: article

 Jul 25th, 2022 by Keith Worrall 

Modified Jul 25th, 2022 at 11:36 AM

Discover Sun-sational Lake Erie Walleye Fishing Fun from the Deep-Water Ports in Chautauqua County, NY

Lake Stratification is Key to Finding Fish – Find a Charter Captain!

Chautauqua, New York – July 25, 2022: Water temperature drives fish behavior. The summer heat is more concentrated this year than ever before. Still, for walleye anglers, Lake Erie provides “fish protection” if you happen to be fishing the deepest Lake Erie waters off the shoreline of Chautauqua County, NY.
As schools of forage fish seek to hide from the mean ultraviolet rays of the depth-penetrating sunshine of 2022, the water depths off Barcelona, Van Buren point, Dunkirk and Irving provide easy access to the chilling comfort zone of the thermocline. The walleye know it. As summer days linger through August, the sun is high overhead, and solar energy penetrates the upper portion of the water column. The upper layer becomes less dense and floats above the cooler thermocline, allowing fish-savvy charter captains and anglers in the know to more easily find schools of hungry predatory walleye. The result is fish-catching fun and tasty table fare.

With sonar and fishing electronics today, it’s like watching reality TV if you are an avid angler. Some of the new electronic gear provides perfect fish imaging from a sonar signal that returns info on where the fish are, how deep, and how many are there. The high-frequency signal looks forward, to each side, and straight down. If you like to catch fish in any lake, the TV screen on the boat is a must-watch channel with non-stop action. Your only job is to pick the right spot with the hungriest fish.

The charter captains know where the fish are from yesterday’s trip and what they will bite on. Angler customers reap all the benefits of catching and keeping whatever number of fish the law allows. There is nothing like catching fish for the fun of the fight, the dinner meals afterward if you keep a few, and the camaraderie on board a fishing crew that aims to please the customers. Even if the charter cost might be $500 or more, it is worth it. Split that up among four folks on board; now that’s a real deal.

Consider this: for minimal cost, you’re getting knowledge, experience, equipment, services, time, accountability, punctuality, professionalism, accuracy, labor, sacrifices, safety, security, guide insurance, gas, bait, and unpretentious, wholesome fun. Many charter folks will even clean your fish for you providing no-bones fillets. When you price walleyes at the fish market and find them at nearly $20 per pound, you have four of your friends on board, and each of you catches a 6-fish limit of walleye, and the fish box weighs in at over 100 pounds. Guess what? You just made money while fishing! Fishing fun with interest! Search the Eastern Lake Erie Charter Boat Association (ELECBA) to find a good, respectable charter fishing guide. ELECBA is an association of Professional, USCG Licensed Charter Captains primarily operating on the Eastern Basin of Lake Erie from the shoreline of beautiful Chautauqua County in the summertime. Each charter boat is fully equipped and ready for action. Sightseeing trips are also available. If you are interested, several well-known regional wineries are on your journey home. You can sample local wines or enjoy a beautiful summer day with anticipation for a Friday fish fry dinner.

Mike Joyner Photo

Tournament action continues for 2022. The Northern Chautauqua County Conservation Club (Con-Club) Walleye Tournament is set for Aug. 5-7, commencing with the captain’s meeting at club headquarters in Dunkirk Harbor on the evening of Aug. 4; Contact Zen Olow at 716-640-2776. The Innovative Outdoors Walleye Challenge follows on Aug. 19-20, open to boaters that can launch from any Lake Erie NYS boat access with the weigh-in set for Dunkirk Harbor; Contact Capt. Jim Steel at 716-481-5348 for info.

The fishing is so good here that there are more consecutive walleye tournaments here than anywhere else in the land of our USA. One extraordinary walleye tournament is coming to Chautauqua County this year: The Cabela’s/Bass Pro National Team Walleye Championship will run from Dunkirk Harbor, Aug. 23-26, with a National TV broadcast event. Look for it.
Chautauqua County draws top reviews for unforgettable late summer Lake Erie walleye and lake trout fishing. The smallmouth bass fishing hits a yearly highlight during the September months. The steelhead begin their tributary runs in September, with a peak in October and November.

Guides: Eastern Lake Erie Charter Fishing Guide Association, https://www.easternlakeeriecharters.com/.
Fish Reports: NYSDEC Fishing Hotline, https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/9217.html;
Fishing Advice & Tackle: Bill’s Hooks, 716-366-0268, Gerri Begier, www.billshooks.com; Westfield Bait & Tackle, Nathan Queer, 716-239-5062, http://westfieldtackle.com/index.php; Reel Outdoors, Capt. Mike Sperry, 716-763-2947, www.chautauquareeloutdoors.com; Hogan’s Hut, 716-789-3831, www.hogans-hut.com;
Lodging: http://www.tourchautauqua.com/where_to_stay.aspx.
Maps: For depth contour maps of Lake Erie: https://www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/24276.html.

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