Angler's Notebook

by Jon Farley

Rubber worms rigged to be "weedless" are among the most potent bass-catchers. One problem with them, though, is that they sometimes slide down the hook shank after a few casts. You can alleviate this by tying two extra pieces of stiff monofilament to the hook eye, one on each side of the regular line knot. Then trim the excess line, leaving short tag ends. By acting as makeshift barbs hidden inside the worm, these knots keep the worm from sliding back once it is pushed up over the eye.

Fishing lure

In addition to great angling opportunities, fishing licenses afford Pennsylvanians another exciting activity­snapping turtle trapping. Though they can be found in just about every lake and sizable stream in the Commonwealth, few people actively pursue snappers. For a change of pace, try trapping "loggerheads" this summer to make a batch of tasty turtle soup. For regulations concerning snapping turtles, see the 2000 Summary of Fishing Regulations and Laws.

Trailer light hookups can get clogged with corrosion during the long periods they are not in use. As a result, the plugs can be difficult to connect, and may not allow the flow of electricity between the contact points. To keep your terminals free or corrosion, buy an extra set of plugs, cut off the wires and attach them to their counterparts on your trailer and vehicle when they're not joined. Cover the exposed wires with electrical tape.

Although the various sunfish species are generally not difficult to catch, on some days they can be unwilling to bite. Here's one way to entice more strikes from reluctant sunnies. Tie a 12- to 18-inch piece of line onto the hook of a tiny spinnerbait or in-line spinner. Then to this line attach a hook baited with a redworm or grub. Fish that come from afar simply to investigate the lure will oftentimes succumb to the trailing live bait.

Great trout fishing is usually not associated with midsummer. However, fly fishermen can get into some great early morning dry fly action on the state's small, wild brook trout streams. Very early in the day, brookies will readily take big, highly visible imitations drifted through the riffles and runs of swift freestone streams.

It's a good idea to keep a small towel, an old pair of shoes and a change of clothes in your vehicle. If you fish enough, sooner or later you'll end up in the water or in a rain shower and need a dry set of clothes to avoid a miserable drive home. Keep them in a trash bag and then use the bag for the wet clothes if you take an unexpected spill get soaked.

Though disparaged as "trash fish" by many anglers, carp offer one of the state's greatest fishing challenges. Their sheer size (up to 50 pounds) and fighting ability makes them a worthy quarry. Bait fishermen have the best luck with heavy tackle and doughballs flavored with strawberry gelatin mix. Among flyrodders, nymph fishing over pods of bottom-feeding carp is an increasingly popular sport.

July/August 2000 Angler & Boater

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