Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Peshtigo River fishing excursion

On Saturday, November 7, 2009, I took a trip with my buddy Steve up to the Peshtigo River. He wanted to check out an interesting property for sale right on the river, and I tagged along to see if I could get some fishing done.

It turned out to be a beautiful fall day, with high temperatures in the low 70s. He dropped me off at the Medicine Brook public access on High Falls Road, and I began the hike along a gravel road back to the river. It turned out to be quite a hike. I didn't realize there were rapids downstream of the little parking lot down by the river, so I began working my way upstream. That stretch is designated as a fly fishing area, but I would imagine one would only be able to catch smallmouth bass on the fly in that stretch. I saw no structure that would appeal to trout. Perhaps further downstream off Fly Fishing Road would be a better location. In any case, this stretch of water had a sandy streambed with very muddy shorelines.

I ended up hiking most of the way upstream through the surrounding woods on the north side of the river. I had gone so far that I figured making my way to the Johnson Falls Dam would be a shorter distance. I called Steve and left a voicemail telling him to pick me up by the Dam, since we had scouted that spot earlier. I was not sure how far I had to go to reach it, but I could finally hear the humming of the generators from the hydro plant. I kept going until I finally hit some decent pocket water and riffles within sight of the dam. I fished that stretch of water for another hour as dusk fell. I could continue fishing and working my way to the shore because of the lights on the hydro plant.

In all that time, I didn't have any hits or see any fish that I spooked. The water temps may have been too cold, and the water levels may have been to high from the dam discharge. I had difficulty keeping my Panther Martin deep enough to induce strikes in the low light conditions.

I do look forward to fishing other stretches before November 15 or next season.