Archive for category Cancilla’s Fishing Blog
In the past winter has been a somewhat unhappy time for me because the lakes are frozen and fishing is very limited. Personally, I have never been one to drill a hole in the ice and fish. However, lately I have found myself enjoying the winter months more and more. A few years ago I started pouring my own soft plastic and lead jig & weights. In my next couple posts I will show some pictures of lures, molds, and tools that I use. This post will show you some very general information.
First of all, I should tell you that after a couple years of doing this I can honestly tell you that I do not want to try to make a living pouring lures. It is a great hobby, but it is very time consuming and can become frustrating at times. Here are several things you should know before you start.
1. You should have a well ventilated area or work with a garage door or at least a window open.
2. Moltant plastic & lead are both over 300 degrees during pouring and have toxic gases. Practice safety by wearing gloves and a respirator at a minimum. (Safety glasses are recommended.
3. Getting started is the most expensive part of pouring anything. Molds can be expensive and it will cost you a decent amount of money for liquid plastic, glitter, dye and other supplies.
4. The internet is your best friend. There are many forums and guys out there willing to help you become successful at it. They might not give you the mix for this colors, but they will help you with any problems that you are having. This includes me. Any knowledge I have gained you are welcome too.
A good place to start looking for supplies is www.lurecraft.com. There are several good companies when it comes to molds. Aluminum molds are expensive, but they are worth the money. A lot of companies will send you samples of the lures before you by the mold so you can see if it is something that you want. In order to get the samples you will often have to contact them via email or by phone. Realize that you can get hand pour molds and injection molds. In my next post I will explain the difference between the 2 styles of molds and the basic equipment and supplies you will need for both.
As always good fishing!
This past weekend I spent Friday and Saturday helping Dick’s Sporting Goods with their grand opening at their two new locations in the area. Berkley and pure fishing had asked me to represent their companies and talk to folks at the new Cranberry location on Friday night and the new South Hills Village location Saturday afternoon. Doing this enabled me to meet a bunch of great customers, fellow fishing and future fishermen.
I would like to say thank you to Ted, a rep for eagle claw and seagar line, and Eric, a rep for Diawa, for sharing the experience with me and teaching me about their products. Of course I was happy to talk to them about all of the great pure fishing companies.
For all of us fishermen in the area the new stores are such an improvement in the fishing department. They each have an extensive fly fishing area. A better selection of rods and reels. The lures, hooks, accessories, and tackle products make these stores the most well stocked in the area. Both lodge managers told me that if there are lures in which we wanted to stock in any brand to tell them and they would see if they could get them in. Remember Dicks Sporting Goods sponsors the Keystone Bass Buddy Circuit (KBBC) so give them your business to show appreciation for their help in making our local tournament circuit function.
The last couple of weekends I have been spending them at Pymatuning Lake. Water conditions have been extremely low and the water temperatures are running much warmer than usual at this point. This hasn’t stopped the fish from biting though. The entire spring the water has been low leaving the bass to spawn in different areas than normal and fisherman having to adjust without being able to fishing in their normal areas.
Two weeks ago was KBBC event. My dad and I are a team as always and have been catching a good number of bass up there. Two weeks prior to the KBBC event we won a touranment catching prespawn fish on a staging area. Because the spawn was going on for this event that spot wasn’t holding up. We ended up flipping weeds with beavers and tubes to get ourselves to a 14th place finish. Not a great finish, but when you can’t find spawners getting almost 15lbs of fish is a good day.
This past weekend I fished my first YRBA tournament on Pymatuning. The guys in the club were really excepting and put on a nice tournament. It was a 2 day event and we fished 6 to 2 on both days. Day 1 Jon and I managed a small 11.85lbs of fish. However, Sunday we managed to boat 17.26lbs in the boat by switching to ledge fishing. That switched allowed us to win the tournament by .35lbs to a team that fished weeds both days. I am looking forward to the next event I get to fish in that club.
Hopefully, before the next tournament up at Pymatuning the water level rises some. If you are fishing a tournament there any time soon. Don’t forget to keep your livewells cool with lots of ice. Post spawn is very tough on fish in a livewell and they aren’t used to warm water yet.
The last few months have been very long for me. With some of the warmest weather I can remember in Pennsylvania I have not been able to fish. If you recall I had been dealing with a shoulder injury for most of the summer. Well in Septmeber after the KBBC Classic I decided to go ahead and have the surgery knowing that it would be a 4-6 month rehab. I am happy to say that I am about 2 1/2 months into the rehab and things are coming along nicely. I still can’t fish or hunt, but everyday life is slowly getting back to normal. Which means I have started getting ready for the 2012 fishing season.
December is a great month to stock up on fishing tackle. Most stores run Christmas sales, on-line sales with free shipping, or simply end of the year sales. Some places that I recommend checking are tackle warehouse, lang big fish, and cabelas. Often these sales don’t last very long so I tend to check the websites 1 or 2 times per week.
I have found that if you contact companies they will often give you bulk pricing on weights, hooks, and even lures. It never hurts to ask and when you are like myself and going to buy 200 bullet weights to get me through the year, you may as well buy in bulk and save money if you can.
Well good luck to you still heading out on the water. I know I would be heading out this weekend to try to get some last minute fish. Remember you might not get a bunch of fish this time of year, but you will usually get good fish to bite.
Last Saturday was the final regular season tournament in the Keystone Bass Buddy Circuit (KBBC). Dad and I decided that because we were sitting in 11 place in the standings we were going to take an all or nothing approach to fishing the event. Which meant to us that we were going to try to lock twice. I know a handful of guys risk doing this every year and some guys make it back on time and some don’t. What we had decided is that no matter what we were going to start locking back up at 11:00, even though the tournament hours were until 3:00. We would start locking with or without a limit.
The tournament started at 6:30 and we ran to the first lock, and when we pulled up to it the doors started to open! We were very excited because this meant no wasted time. Once we got through that lock, we quickly ran to the next one. Another boat went up and pulled the chord so we stopped short to make a few casts. I think we were able to make 4 casts and they opened the gates again! Never in my wildest dream did I expect to have both locks line up and let us get to our spot by 7:40. I knew then that we had a better chance to do well.
Our first spot was a creek mouth that I had practiced the week before and caught a number of keepers and dinks. Turned out to have more dinks than keepers during the touranment, but we were able to get 2 keepers from the spot. One decent keeper and one that was around 12 3/4″.
Then we ran to a spot that I found were there was a metal wall, but there were a series of rock humps and wooden structure that was submerged. We got to that spot and I immediately caught a small keeper. It was around 12 1/4″. About 5 minutes later I caught a really nice 15″+ smallie. That would be the last of the keepers for that spot.
We fired up the boat again and ran to another spot by a couple of barges. Quickly dad caught our lunker smallmouth for the day and another keeper spotted bass. At this point we were really excited because we had our limit and it was only 10:30. The problem was that we were out of spots that produced for me in practice. We ran around fishing quickly for about 30 minutes looking for fish but nothing happened. So we decided to lock back through to the next pool.
Like clock work we were able to lock right up through and quickly ran to a spot we had caught them in practice. Once we locked back through we were able to catch 2 more keepers. One that culled and one that didn’t. One was off of a rocky bottom and the other was off of an old metal structure. We locked back through to the southside pool around 1:00. A 2:35 dad got a good bite, but the fish jumped and trashed away from the boat and was able to get off. The fish would have culled, but I think it may have only been able to move us up 1 or 2 places in the standing.
Overall, it was worth the gamble for a couple of reasons. First, we made it back on time. Second, we got away from the crowd. Third, we had decent fish located. Forth, we really had nothing to loose. Seven of the eight keepers we caught were on weightless stick worms. The stick worms were ones that I make myself that are very soft and are a slightly different brown color than most companies make. The other keeper was on a beaver that was green pumpkin that I made myself as well. I am a believer in making baits that no one else has and it has really paid off for us this year.
Congrats to Chuck Walker Jr. and Chris Covert for winning the points title for the year. Their 6th place finish shot them up to the top.
For those who follow the blog, know I haven’t posted anything in a while on my personal blog. I have worked on other parts of the website, but just haven’t posted much on my blog. There is a very good reason for this….Memorial Day Weekend I tore muscles and cartlidge in my shoulder. Although, it has been painful, I have tried to fish but have had limited success. To go with the limited success working at the computer tends to bring a little extra pain to my shoulder, so when I am done with work I don’t want to see a computer until the next day. I scheduled surgery in September. Don’t worry I schedule it so that I would be able to fish in the KBBC Classic and the Wednesday Night Championship.
This weekend dad and I will be fishing the last regular season event of the KBBC circuit at the Southside. At this point most guys know that I typically struggle at the river. However, because I have started to pour my own baits fishing the river is becoming easier as I am really keying in on color and size of the lures better. Maybe I am just getting a little bit better at river fishing? Who knows, it could happen. Either way I am looking forward to the event this year. Practice has went pretty well. I do not think I am on the right fish to win, but I feel that a top 5 finish isn’t out of the question. Let’s just hope that barge traffic and the locks don’t ruin my day. I have never made a gamble like this before and I might never do it again, but we are willing to risk it all for a chance to win. Good luck to all that are fishing.
This past weekend was one of the most unbelievable fishing weekends that I have ever experienced. It started with fishing the KBBC event at Pymatuning Lake on Saturday. My dad had practiced for the event on Thursday and was confident in his spots and what made me happy is where and how they were getting them. Plus, I had been there the previous saturday for a 1/2 day and my spots were close to his. That makes for a maximized fishing day. It took me about 3 flips and I had our first keeper and we never looked back. We had our first limit in the first hour of the tournament and had 1 good fish in the well. Then it was time to start culling. And boy did we cull a lot of fish. Switching between flipping, working soft plastic on breaks, and topwater we were able to boat between 45 and 50 keepers. The majority of which were largemouth bass. More than likely we caught 4 limits of 6 fish that would have been over 12lbs. It was a record setting day for the Keystone Bass Buddy Circuit. 81 limits were brought to the scales and over 1100 pounds of fish were weighed in. If it wasn’t for a 1/2 pound dead fish penalty we would have collected a check, but we still finished 22 with 15.11 pounds. More importantly we moved up to first in the standings. It is a long season, but this is by far the best start we have ever had.
Sunday we got up and decided to ride to Presque Isle Bay to try and get into the smallmouth bass. We got there and there was a very strong wind out of the northeast. These are not good conditions to fish the bay. Especially when the wind is blowing 20-25mph and raining hard the entire time. Unlike the weather the fishing was unbelievable. Between the 2 of us we boated over 50 smallmouth in 6 hours. A couple were over 5lbs and about 10 were probably in the 4lb range. most of the fish were in the 3lb range though. The key to the day was actually getting your lure to the bottom. If you didn’t you weren’t catching fish, but as soon as you got down you were getting bit.
If you are looking for somewhere to fish this weekend I highly recommend both of these fisheries, as this could be the best weather we have had in weeks to fish during the weekend. Good Luck.
I received an email last night that made me feel like a big time star. Although I know better than that. The email was from Mike Rizzo, a sports talk show host on the Rizzo Sports Weekly show. He invited me to be a guest on his talk show tonight from 7:30 to 8:00 pm live. The show will air locally on TV at FLN 23 and on the radio at WTYM 1380am. We will be talking about the fishing community and local fishing opportunities and industry. I am looking forward to this experience as it will be my first TV appearance. Hopefully, I can get some feedback on the website as to how the interview went. Check back to see clips of the interview. You can get the live feed at http://www.rizzosports.com/.
I went out to Lake Arthur from 5:30-8:30 Monday night. My goal was to test out my new battery and experitment with some soft plastic baits that I poured. I managed to boat 20 bass in those 3 hours. I also lost 6 fish and missed about 6 or so hits as well. Some lures that worked were chatterbaits, buzzbaits, and a beaver like lure that I poured myself. The water temperature was between 55 and 59 depending if I was in the back of the bays or on the main lake. If we would get some consistent nice weather I feel the fish are getting ready to spawn. Hopefully, I can get back out there tomorrow night.
I fished for about 30 minutes for stripe bass as well, but I didn’t even get a hit looking for them. I threw some jerkbaits, red eye shad, and even trolled for a few minutes. I really want to get into them right now. They are one of my favorite fish to eat.
Well it was another difficult weekend of fishing in Pennsylvania. In part due to some difficult weather conditions. After a good start last week at Lake Arthur in the Keystone Bass Buddy Circuit we decided to fish event number two on Raystown Lake. Historically, I have never done well at Raystown Lake, so we decided to head out and practice all day on Friday to find a pattern, check water temperatures and water clearity.
We launched from the Seven Points Campground launch around 10:00. The weather was aweful. It was about 40 degrees and raining. I don’t mean a light rain or a sprinkle, it was a constant heavy rain. We fished several spots with no luck before we went back and set up the campsite and had lunch. After being off the water for a little while we went back out and decided that we had better check a couple of spots that we had caught fish before. We fished nearly 400 yards of shoreline at a slow to moderate pace before I decided to try a soft plastice craw bait. I made a few casts and I caught a 3lb largemouth. To be honest I barely felt the hit and even when I set the hook I wasn’t sure it was a fish. So we moved down the shore about 100 yars and I caught a dink. At that point we decided to leave that area and explore a little more. We never had another hit, and at 7:00 we decided to call it a night and go back to the tent.
The next morning we went to registration at James Creek. We pulled boat 89 and secured second flight, which is what we wanted. We started by fishing the James Creek finger and worked a long stretch for the first hour. We decided to work it back up, and around 9:45 we got our first keeper on a chatterbait. It was a nice 3lb largemouth. We worked that area for a while and decided to make a move and just hit every spot on the lake that had produced in the past. Our second stop was an area that has produced smallmouth bass for us in the past. Sure enough around 12:00 we caught our lunker a 3.69lb smallmouth. We worked the spot for another hour without a bite. At that point we decided to hit the stretch that I had caught the keeper the day before. After another long Idle we started working soft plastics and jerkbaits. I missed a 2 different fish and decided to make a lure change because they had never hooked up. Sure enough the move to a different bait the the key because in the next 20 minutes I caught 2 more keeper largemouth. We worked the area for the rest of the day but those fish that I caught around 2:00 were the last ones we caught.
Overall we had little expectations coming into the event and even less after practice. However, this goes to show you that you can draw off of past experience and new knowledge and still have a good day on the water. Our 5th place finish with 4 bass that weighed 12.18 pounds has moved us up to 2nd in the AOY standings. It is a good start that hopefully continues in the KBBC tournament trail.
On Sunday the West Penn Bass Hunters had our first club tournament. We started our season at Lake Wilhelm under great weather conditions, but struggled. There were only 6 bass brought to the scales. A great finish by Jon who had the only 3 fish limit and finished 1st with lunker. I managed to finish 3rd with my 1 keeper. Look for that lake to really turn on this week. The water temps are rising and the clearity is pretty good. The baitfish are not hard to find, but making fish to eat was a struggle this weekend. Good job to all that caught fish and see everyone at Pymatuning.