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Bill Hilts Jr. is a past president of
New York State Outdoor Writers Association.
In addition to the above, Hilts is an avid outdoorsman,
an outdoor writer who has contributed articles to numerous
national and local magazines, newspapers, and other publications.
Hilts is also responsible for Niagara County Tourism
He freelances from his home in Sanborn
Hilts was inducted in the New York State
Outdoorsmen Hall of Fame in the Spring of 2007!
Email Bill at; Bill Hilts
This column as it appears here is seen in the Niagara Gazette on
The Niagara Gazette is the area's leading outdoors sports information newspaper
Bill Hilts Fish Weekly Fish
Bill Hilts Jr.
THIS BILL HILTS Jr. WEEKLY FISHING
IS UPDATED EVERY WEEK FOR YOUR WEEKEND FISHING!
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Record Steelhead!! GO HERE
for story and Pictures on this website!
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page is the complete, uncut, unabridged, unedited version of the weekend
Note: Hilts SUNDAY Outdoor Column
appears on this website HERE
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[See Report Below This - There are TWO
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Niagara USA Fishing Report for
the week of FEBRUARY 8, 2016
Every week since the first of
the year (or so it seems), we attempt to give you the best information
we can going into the weekend. And each time the report comes out,
Mother Nature swoops in to throw a little wrinkle into the “beat” in any
given week. With an open Lake Erie, the water has been very susceptible
to wind and rain, sending muddy water through the Niagara River. Rain
and snow have been alternating, affecting the streams flowing into Erie
and Ontario. Ice fishing has also been a hit or miss. Caution is advised
if you try your luck on hard water.
Waller Wins NRAA Contest
You don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone! The Niagara River
Anglers Association held its annual Roger Tobey Memorial Steelhead
Contest on the lower river and in Lake Ontario tributaries during some
pretty adverse weather conditions. Despite cold temperatures, stained
water and gusty winds, some fish were caught during the friendly
competition. At the top of the list at the end of the day was Ed Waller
of Lewiston, who hauled in a 9.62-pound steelhead from Devil’s Hole
while fishing with Capt. Chris Cinelli of Grand Island. He was drifting
an emerald shiner on a three-way rig, with a chartreuse bead above it.
Second place was an 8.08-pound steelhead reeled in by Norm Deitrich of
Haverford, Pa., caught on a minnow. He was using Waller’s boat along
Artpark at 1:50 p.m. when the fish hit. Third place was Fran Szovati of
Cold Springs, Ky., with a 7.88-pound steelhead. He caught it on an
emerald shiner-trout bead combination, fishing with Capt. Ted Kessler of
Grand Island – also in Devil’s Hole. Down on 18 Mile Creek near Burt
Dam, a few brown trout were caught. Bob Rustowicz of Cheektowaga hauled
in a couple nice trout, including a fish that was around 9 pounds.
However, he thought that it would never place in the money so he
released it. The only fish he brought to the scales was a 5.82 pound
brown trout for a special brown division. He missed by .02 pound to
place in the money. Winning brown was a 5.84-pound trout reeled in by
Capt. Tyler Morrison of Barker. He was using a jig tipped with a wax
worm and fished under a float.
Lake Ontario and tributaries
Water was flowing nicely over the weekend and according to Taz Morrison
of Barker, the best two streams have been 18 Mile Creek and the Oak
Orchard River. Trout have been scattered throughout the systems and look
for some fresh fish to migrate up soon. The warm rain on Tuesday night
into Wednesday could be the catalyst for pulling in some fresh
steelhead. Best bait has been a jig fished under a float and tipped with
a wax worm. Egg sacs will also work.
Lake Erie and tributaries
Nick Sagnibene of Ellicottville’s Adventurebound on the Fly sends word
that most inland streams were in decent shape. Some were even a little
too clear. That is going to change with the rain, increasing flows and
stain. Look for good fishing this weekend. Sagnibene likes smaller nymph
patterns like stoneflies and pheasant tails. If the water is a little
more stained and higher, black or olive wooly buggers are a good option.
One of the better creeks off Erie has been 18 Mile and egg sacs have
been a good bait to use.
Ice cover was back on Chautauqua according to Rich Davenport of
Tonawanda. Look to the northern end for the best chance at getting on
the lake this weekend. That would be my bet, but I also bet on Atlanta.
It looks like colder temperatures are arriving so give it a few days to
freeze up. Off Maple Springs, Davenport had 3 inches of ice over 15 feet
of water – not quite enough … but close. As always, exercise caution
when ice fishing. It may be thick enough in one spot but not thick
enough in another. Never fish alone and carry ice picks and a rope. It
may take a little longer in the south basin with strong currents posing
Ice Fishing Update
Steve “Hawk” Hawkins of Capt. Bob’s Tackle in Clarence sends word that
some decent fish have been coming in through his shop this week from
Silver Lake. Nice pike came to the scales by several area anglers. Tim
Hughes of Amherst caught a 34-inch northern pike on an ultra-light
jigging rod using golden shiners. His is 12 years old. He was fishing
with his brother Jerry Hughes, who had similar success on pike. The big
one was a 10.69-pound, 36.5-inch pike to take over the lead in his
derby, reeled in by Mike Grzelewski of Cheektowaga. Check out this
week’s gallery online. Hawk also reports good ice the south end of
Honeoye, Cuba Lake, the eastern basin of Oneida Lake and Black Lake. It
was all before the rain.
Tim Thomas with the Winter Classic and the Ice Pro Am Series sends word
that they won’t make their decision on the team tournament set for Feb.
12 on Sodus Bay until Thursday. Check their website at
www.nysiceproam.com. Chaumont Bay is slated to hold its event Feb. 19
and Oneida is set for Feb. 25. Chaumont Bay has upwards of 10 inches of
ice and the bite has been fairly good. Just ask Casey McIntosh of
Camillus, who weighed in a 13.95-pound walleye through the ice this past
week to take over second place in the Winter Classic tourney. He caught
it with a Buckshot. There is also a new first place pickerel, 6.38
pounds and weighed in by Bill Kinne in Pulaski.
Lower river trout action has been inconsistent. Anglers have really had
to work for their fish. Kwikfish, egg sacs, emerald shiners – with or
without beads above the offering – have all been catching steelhead and
lake trout with other fish thrown in for incidentals. Walleye, brown
trout, sturgeon were all reported last week. Water was off-color but
fishable on Tuesday, but the high winds and rains will undoubtedly have
an effect on water clarity and fish-catching. Rick Kustich of Getzville
has been having some luck from shore using his two-handed fly rod with
white or purple spey-style flies. His new book, “Hunting Musky with a
Fly” is now out if you are interested in a reel challenge.
An outdoor show on
LCTV (Time Warner Cable Channel 22; or 22.5 Phone number is 716-434-1733; www.lctv.net is on Wednesdays at 4 pm
called “The Outdoor Beat”, bringing aboard local experts on area outdoor
activities. It will be live for call-in and also air several other times on
Thursday and the weekend. Check it out!
Thanks to everyone that supports the Outdoors Niagara website! ....Please tell your friends! Don't forget to check our Outdoors Forum!
Dropshotting for bass: [Lake Erie] Capt. Jim Hanley sends word that just prior to the
Labor Day weekend and the nasty weather he had experienced some of his best
fishing of the year around Sturgeon Point, Myers Reef and Seneca Shoal. You
could catch all the 14-15-inch smallmouth bass you wanted in 25 feet of water
or you could slide out a bit deeper – out to 45 feet – to catch some bigger
fish up to 5 pounds, six ounce for him. He had back to back days of 120 bass
coming to the boat. Top bait was crayfish and Gulp green worms fished on a drop
shot rig. « Go to Link
Outdoors Forum Here [Daily Reports]
Town Fishing Contest!
Be an Outdoors Niagara
TO LINKS ON THIS
ALL ABOUT ► Blue Pike
Bait Supply & Outdoors Niagara September
HERE FOR RESULTS
Wilson NY Spring Steelhead
/ To see the picture of the week Look Here
Big Bass Contest Lower
Niagara/Lake Ontario - Go Here for all the Information!
Go to the
Official DEC Press release regarding the VHS Disease in
UP TO DATE PICTURES AND INFORMATION ON THE LEWISTON
LAUNCH RAMP REPLACEMENT AND FISH GRINDER OVERHAUL
Niagara River Cabela's Masters Walleye Tournament story in photos HERE
NEW! New York
Fishing Regulations HERE
NEW! Finger Lakes Fishing
Website! Check it out here! Finger Lakes Fishing Fishing
reports & weather at the Fingers
Photos and story on the
Lewiston Launch Ramp repairs and replacement October 23 2009 startup Go Here ~ Exclusively on
For LOC photos &
stories from the Niagara River/Lake Ontario/Youngstown area go to: LOC Derby on Outdoors Niagara Stories & Photos
exclusively on Outdoors Niagara!
WALLEYE CLASSIC Contest
Information is all right HERE!
for Lewiston Louie's picture and story ►ONLY ON OUTDOORS NIAGARA!
NEW! New York
Fishing Regulations HERE
Finger Lakes Hotspot Fishing Website! Go Here
Drop Shot Fishing - Find Out HERE
Walleye Fishing Clubs - New York Walleye and Southtowns Walleye Associations
See how walleye fans keep these organizations afloat
Great story & brief history of these two clubs HERE
By Will Elliott
ALL THESE COLUMNS ARE UPDATED REGULARLY:
Hilts Weekend Fish Locator /
Go to Bill Hilts Outdoors Thursday Column
Go to Joe Ognibene's
Go to Will Elliott's "Fishing
Go To Bill Josephs "Straight From the Field"
Go to Mike Gillis "Outdoors in Niagara
Bob Confer's Outdoors
Tips Page ~
FRIDAY FEBRUARY 13 2009 - We must preface this report with some sad
news. One of the local giants in the sportfishing
industry passed away this week. Capt. Doug Stein of Grand Island, a charter captain and guide
for many years, died after a valiant bout with cancer. Doug was the president
of the Niagara River Anglers Assn. for nearly a decade, with one of his big
initiatives being the first pen rearing project for salmon in the county. He
was one of those guys willing to go out on a limb to support what he believed
in and always willing to help when work needed to be accomplished to help the
sportfishery along. He was a big man with an even
bigger heart and I’m proud to say that he was a friend of mine. We fished,
hunted and shot together and he will be sorely missed by many. Bill Hilts
DEC FISHING LINE INFORMATION: GO HERE
RECORD COYOTE STORY IS FALSE! Go Here for
Read about about
a 147 pound wolf by a local hunter GO HERE TRUE STORY!
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