Doug Johnson Chat

Category: chat

 Mar 29th, 2006 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Mar 29th, 2006 at 12:00 AM

Slamr: MuskieFIRST Welcomes Doug Johnson of LOTWs guiding fame to the Chat Room, thanks again Doug! dougj: Hi Guys! sworrall: Doug, Welcome doublem: Hey, Doug Musky_Brian: hello Slamr: Doug, can you start off telling us a little about your guiding career on LOTWs, when you started, etc? dougj: Thanks for having me! nwild: Doug, is it to early to have any type of idea on water levels for next season? dougj: Well, I started fishing for muskies in the mid 60’s and have spent 1,000 of day on the LOTWs. Slamr tells you: who is Double M? doublem tells you: computer’s acting up…cell 499-3090, now that everyone know it!!! dougj: Norm, right now the water level is at the 25% tile which means it’s on the low side. That can change rapidly. nwild: With so many spots up there that look fishy, what are the main ingredients you look for for big fish spots dougj: Big complex spots. Slamr: can you describe what “complex” means for a spot? doublem: Do you subscribe to the idea that most LOT woods fish stay shallow? MNmatt: if you only got to fish one week in the summertime at the angle, which week would you pick as the peak time? dougj: Different types of structure, and usually near a main channel.. BenR: Do you fish at night at all? sorenson: Doug, you hear a lot about the ‘blooms’ on LOTW; how do you deal with that situation? dougj: Don’t fish at night much, don’t have to. dougj: Usually the best casting week is some time in July. but pressure can change that. dougj: Sosenson. dougj: I burn gas and look for clean water. MNmatt: thanks doug. nwild: Last year it when I was up there it seemed like the pressure was lower, did you notice that at all, and do you think MN lakes are picking up some of that pressure lambeau: are there certain parts of LotW that are more prone to blooming than others? can you anticipate when/where it will happen? muskyboy: how much do you cast versus troll throughout your season? dougj: Hard to tel, it’s still lots more than 10 year ago, lots of “schools” musky99: Whens the bloom generally the worst? dougj: I cast during the summer and troll in the fall. EWhen it’s cold and the tillibees spawn. BenR: what baits do you troll with? dougj: The bloom varies, but in general late August till late Sept. dougj: Mostly Jakes, but Believers also. BenR: Do you think LOTW has a world record in it….have you seen fish in this class there Musky_Brian: Doug, there’s various sections of LOTW…Sabaskong, WhiteFfish Bay, The Angle…which is your favorite and why? dougj: Don’t know about the WR. Maybe, but I’ve never seen anything close. lambeau: Doug, i’ve had the impression you think that sometimes people can overcomplicate fishing for muskies, or think too hard. is this true? if so, any tips for “simplifying” fishing on LotW? Gator_Guy: Doug – do you ever fish the north end of the lake…..Kenora area/ dougj: I like all the sections of the LOTWs there’s no bad spot. dougj: I do go to the Kenora area at times, been up there a few tims and there are fish there. Gator_Guy: do you fish it the same way as the angle or change something dougj: The LOTWS is just a bunch of small lakes all put together, just fish the bunch of small alkes. Gator_Guy: thank you muskyboy: What are your favorite casting lures these days? lambeau: so break it down…not so overwhelming. good tip! nwild: Doug, just the NW angle is a huge area, what factors cause you to run from one area of it to another, weather? fishing pressure? something all together different? dougj: In summer time no doubt it’s a bucktail, but a spinner bait works well also. Speed Kills. muskyboy: yes it does, thanks dougj: Usually react to fishing pressure more than anything else. Slamr: Doug, you’ve spent a lot of days on the water with clients, what do you see them making the biggest mistakes on? calcutta: when trolling jakes and believers in the fall what speeds do you run them at? musky99: What is your most productive color? dougj: The biggest problem I see with clients is the ability to read water, second is the ability to cast well. Musky_Brian: Doug you been at this a long, are the new flashy lures off today really that much more effective then some stuff you used back in the 60’s,70’s etc.. dougj: Brian: Not sure if they are any better or not. Old lure seems to work well at times and at time nothing seems to work. lambeau: what are the qualities that make for a good “speed kills” bucktail? dougj: I like a french blade (#6 Vibrax) and a slim bouble bucktail. Dave_N: Doug, If you had a choice between fishing a GREAT spot that many other anglers were fishing that day, and a MEDIOCRE spot that had been overlooked by other anglers, which would you choose? MNmatt: any color preferences in hair baits? dougj: The Mediocre spot any time. muskyboy: How much time do you give a spot like that? Dave_N: That’s interesting you would choose the mediocre spot. I think the effect of pressure is overlooked in many respects. Thanks for your insights on that. dougj: Almost any color works. nwild: It’s obvious pressure is something that really influences you, how much pressure on a spot is too much BenR: Which colors will you not use? dougj: I’ve seen great spots turn into nothing spots in reaction to pressure. sorenson: Doug, you’ve caught a carload of big fish over the years; does a 34″ fish still get you excited? Slamr: back to pressure….do you think fish are getting caught, or educated, or ? dougj: I’ have a spot that I’ve caught 8 50″ers on in year past, taht I have’ne seen a fish on in the last 5 years. lambeau: how long do you think it takes for the fish to return to the spot (or get active if they didn’t leave) after the pressure is off? dougj: Yes I like to catch any muskie, big one are just better. Musky_Brian: Doug, musky fishing at the present time on LOTW…is it better/worse/the same as it was when you first began?? dougj: Brian: jlong: When you leave the dock in the morning…. does weather set your intitial course and pressure dictates where you end up? Something else? dougj: It’s better than when I first started, but worse that what it was say 10 year ago. sworrall: do you see many spotted fish in the Angle, or are thay all ‘barred’? dougj: I usually react to wind direction and volecity. muskyboy: What does the wind direction and velocity tell you? nwild: I know at times you and Dick have differed on the wind blown philosophy, do you find that the wind blown stuff is better than the lee side dougj: The LOTWs fish are all sorts of colors, with stripes and bars and spots and whatever. BenR: what is your favorite music to listen to while you fish? cupspits: is anyone been hooking any walleye wood_chucker: Did you see or catch any tigers last year in the angle? dougj: I like to fish where I can control the boat, and my casts land where I think they should. jlong: Do you target specific fish… or just fish “good” spots? cupspits: i had a big muskie follow two days ago huge fish cupspits has been kicked by sworrall . dougj: I usually catch 2-3 tigers a year. Chris_Haley: Dougj did you get to fish down south this winter in TN or NC, dougj: Yes, getting some on Melton Hill, nothing great, but fun never the less. Dave_N: Doug, do you often catch big northerns (fish >30″) while musky fishing, or is that a rare event on LOTW? The_Yeti: doug, what are some of your favorite presentations on “good” days….muskie days. other than trolling that is? Chris_Haley: yeh seen some toads around bull run but the biggest has been a 47 since the new year. . dougj: More northerns in the last 5-6 year than before. Yes we get a fair number of northerns. MNmatt: where is melton hill? Dave_N: Have you noticed any decline in the number of small, young muskies you see or catch over the past 5-6 years? . dougj: Usually don’t troll during the summer, and catch most fish casting. Probably get most of them with a bucktail or spinner bait. Chris_Haley: MNmatt its near Knoxville TN . lambeau: what depth ranges are you focusing on the most during the summer? dougj: Melton Hill in in Tennessee, near Oak Ridge. dougj: Yes more small fish in the past 5 years. dougj: Mostly cast at shore during the summer, almost all the fish we catch are hallow. MNmatt: do you still take any time to goto the Seul? jlong: I’m assuming that is a positive sign for the future? nwild: In WI a lot of times I will find the biggest fish right at the break, LOTW I seem to find more of them up REAL shallow, is this a pressure thing again? Chris_Haley: Dougj did you fish MH across from bull run plant near the old bride that flat is sweet it has big stripers and muskies all chasin herring. ESOX_Maniac: Doug – What is your take on plastic’s? dougj: I like to go to Lac Seul, but haven’t been there for several years. Might go again next year for a few days. MNmatt: is that where you have seen your biggest fish? dougj: Biggest fish I’ve ever seen has been on Lac Seul. muskyboy: How big do you think? muskyboy: big walleyes and northerns there too dougj: Chiis: The Bull Run Plant hasn’t been generating since I’ve been there and that area is pretty dead. Dave_N: Doug, do you keep a record of the percentage of fish you or your clients catch that are over 50 inches, and if so, do you mind telling us what that is? Musky_Brian: Doug when fishing Sabaskong Bay I struggled to find fish in the large, vast weedbeds that would cover an entire bay…are the muskies in these areas and harder to find or should I look elsewhere? dougj: For years I kept records and the % of fish over 48″ (that used to be a LOTWs legal) was around 10%. It’s now around 3%, but looks to be increasing some. muskyboy: wow Dave_N: Thanks, Doug. That’s good info. I’m in the business of setting objectives for musky fisheries in Wisconsin, so it helps to have something to compare to. dougj: Chris: Slamr: Doug, what is one bit of advice you would give to more junior muskie fisherman?. dougj: Fished back there, but I’d most;ly mud right now and very low as they have drawn the lake down for clean-up. Gator_Guy: Doug – what is your favorite time of the day for big fish nwild: Do you spend most of your time fishing around the “population” areas of the angle, or more time out in no man’s land dougj: Keep your lure wet! Slamr: just cast more, change less baits? dougj: Norm: There really aren’t any no-man’s land left in the LOTWs. Chris_Haley: Don’t let the muddy water bother you those points half way out near the train bridge hold fish just about all season. I havent been down there since feb I have been on the new river and green river . dougj: Dave_N Send me an E-mail and I’ll ive you some more data. Dave_N: Thanks, Doug. Will do. Your addy? dougj: [email protected] lambeau: doug, are certain areas more “action” areas and others places you go for “trophy” fish? do they have different features/structure? Chris_Haley: Hey WV Ray Hensley called last night said he got three this week from the Mud river. Wv streams are gettin ready huh. dougj: Yes the farther you are from the main channels the less big fish you will run into. Slamr: doug, how do you feel about the big bait/big fish theories floating the internet airwaves this year? lambeau: how strong is the current in those channel areas? (generally) does it vary through the season? dougj: Generally big baits are better for big fish, but big fish also eat small baits! MuskieMike: Doug if you could only have 5 baits what would they be? Chris_Haley: WV I will be in WV sunday to fish the mud. dougj: Current sort of depends on lake levels, high water=heavy current, low water = low current. dougj: 1 Bucktail Pete_Stoltman: Hi Doug, I’ve seen you work your Suicks through some incredible slop. Do you use the unweighted or weighted Suicks? MuskieMike: What do you generaly use for rods/ reels? Line and leaders? dougj: 2 suick dougj: Later on the baits dougj: I use unweighted suicks. muskyboy: How do you work a suick in the heavy slop? dougj: I use 8′ rods, and usually 7000 garcias. Make my own leadeers. Chris_Haley: He’s got a good guide (Speed jones)? MuskieMike entered the room. Chris_Haley: they like them small gliders Randall_P__McMurphy entered the room. dougj: I usually watch them as close as I can and pull when there are clear and let them rise when there a bunch of weeds. muskyboy: when are you in TN usually? Gator_Guy: Doug – best time of day? . muskyboy: Sounds like you need to hit Lac Seul big time lambeau: are there certain camps you suggest for people to look into when planning a trip to LotW? dougj: Late hour of the day. Gator_Guy: thank you dougj: Lots of great LOTWS resorts. Dave_N: Doug, would you say Sabaskong Bay is pressured more than most areas? dougj: Usually in the south for two months Feb and March. dougj: Right now it’s a toss up between Sabaskong and the Angle. I think the Angle is more pressured right now because of all the schools. Dave_N: Thanks sworrall: MuskieFIRST would like to thank you for a very informative hour Doug! sworrall: Thanks for joining us dougj: Thank you ! muskyboy: Thank you very much Doug, very insightful as always Gator_Guy: thanks doug, i enjoyed very much wood_chucker: Thanks, Doug! Slamr: that might be the most questions fielded in an hour by one guest in our chat room history Pete_Stoltman: Thanks Doug

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