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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    Ben Lomond, Ca
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    Default Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Most of my life fishing has been when and where the opportunity popped up. Now, I'm more about being at the right place at the right time now and loving it.

    My favorite non-anadromous FW fish is the smallie, but there aint many around me. I hear/read about places like the Finger Lakes, the upper midwest, the southeast...

    My wife and I like road trips and could probably arrange to be about anywhere in the lower 48 when the smallies are really happening. I can wade and will probably have a float tube with me...

    Where should I go and when should I be there?

    Thanks for any help!

    -Mike

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Wasilla / Skwentna, Alaska
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    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Probably more road than you want but............The west branch of the Susquehanna River from the Jersey Shore Bridge up to the mouth of Big Pine Creek. I've never seen a place with more fish except the Sockeye run on the Kenai last year, it hit over 4.5 million fish.

    The Suskey is in Pennsylvania and like I said, a lot of road and you need a boat to access the water. I just thought I would say it because you ask, timing; May - October

    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

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  4. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    quiet corner, ct
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    8,605

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Here in the northeast it's Maine. Prime rivers are the Penobscot up stream from Old Town and the Androscoggin down stream from the NH state line.
    If you've never been to Maine.......
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
    Posts
    4,752

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Smallie Heaven may very well be right here where I live on the Rainy River. We have a pretty big average size and a lot of them. For the most part there are not getting fished for either. Part of it is that this is the Walleye capital of the world, or so they tell us that. Actually they might be right on that one to. But I digress. Since virtually everyone coming here to fish do it for the Walleye, the Smallies are pretty much left alone. The biggest problem for those who don't live here, is that it isn't the end of the Earth here, but you can see it from here.

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  7. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Pinedale, WY
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    19,011
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    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    This won't help much, but I found smallie heaven last summer. My son got permission to fish on a private pond in Longmont, CO. Great place to take a kid fishing and the four year old grandson had a blast. The smallies didn't disappoint, it was non-stop action for several hours, throwing large dry flies, what a great way to spend a day fishing. I sure hope we can get permission this summer! Earlier this winter I joined the popper swap just so I would be armed for the smallie action this coming summer!
    Larry


  8. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Northern WI
    Posts
    1,003

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Quote Originally Posted by Diver Dan View Post
    Smallie Heaven may very well be right here where I live on the Rainy River. We have a pretty big average size and a lot of them. For the most part there are not getting fished for either. Part of it is that this is the Walleye capital of the world, or so they tell us that. Actually they might be right on that one to. But I digress. Since virtually everyone coming here to fish do it for the Walleye, the Smallies are pretty much left alone. The biggest problem for those who don't live here, is that it isn't the end of the Earth here, but you can see it from here.


    No doubt you live in prime smallie country, Dan. I have fished the Vermillion area many times, and the fishing is fantastic. I actually had a chance last year to fish Sturgeon on Rainy, but got stuck working that weekend instead :sadface:. I'm lucky enough to live on the Mississippi though, so I can't complain either.

    The Upper Mississippi is another trophy smallmouth destination. If it was me, a road trip to Minnesota for smallmouths would be on my to-do list. Places like Rainy, Vermillion, Mille Lacs, The Upper Mississippi, and even the Zumbro river are all trophy producing systems.

  9. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Ben Lomond, Ca
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    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Rip, I used to be in Bangor and Portland both a bit in the '90s but they were kinda head down trips. Love the fall there...Columbus day. Lobstah.

    You Rainy river guys....THAT is rural...but possible. It would be nice to be somewhere no one else fished for them.

    Hey, I got my wife in WVa last fall and she loved it. Rural is ok as long as there's a Macy's at the end of the road.

    -Mike

  10. #8

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Northern Ohio all the way. We've got Lake Erie and all the tributaries!

  11. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    1,844

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Come to Missouri. You can wade fish streams and throw flies to fish in the 18"+ class all day long. we have a ton of places to fish for them here and excellent conservation on them.
    "When you do things right, people wont be sure you've done anything at all."

    Storm Drain Bonefisher

  12. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Parlin, NJ / Staten Island, NY
    Posts
    2,063

    Default Re: Where is smallie heaven and when should I be there?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
    Probably more road than you want but............The west branch of the Susquehanna River from the Jersey Shore Bridge up to the mouth of Big Pine Creek. I've never seen a place with more fish except the Sockeye run on the Kenai last year, it hit over 4.5 million fish.

    The Suskey is in Pennsylvania and like I said, a lot of road and you need a boat to access the water. I just thought I would say it because you ask, timing; May - October
    They're that close me??? Thanks Ard, this is on my short list of things to do this year
    The best way to a fisherman's heart is through his fly.

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