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froggie
07-03-2010, 07:34 PM
Well, We finally got to Chama, set up camp & decided to wait til after July 4th weekend to hit the lake. We'll be on Heron Lake early Mon. am. Hope to have a good report with pics.
Froggie

KilKenny
07-15-2011, 07:00 PM
I agree with RalphL on another topic, we need to get some chat going on Heron lake. This lake is an awesome kokanee fishery. I’m headed up tomorrow and if I have broadband access Ill post my 2011 season adventures.

Go Heron Lake!!!

RalphL
07-15-2011, 10:26 PM
I'll be heading up tomorrow myself. Look for a pontoon with a tan bimini named "Mia Cumare," We keep it slipped at the marina.. Good luck see ya Ralph

niswanger
07-18-2011, 04:27 PM
Heading here the second week of August. We will be fishing from sailing kayaks and plan to just use a fish finder and jigging. We've never fished for Kokanee and need some tips on lures and good spots of the lake.

Anyone use these jigs? http://www.kokaneetackle.com/p-320-p-line-kokanee-jig.aspx

Would love to troll with planners or downriggers but just can't in the Kayaks, just we will have to revert to cast and jigging I suppose at about 35' depth.

Thanks,
Roy

RalphL
07-21-2011, 10:28 PM
just got back, drove up sunday, fished mon,tues, wed, limited out every day by noon. Ran apex, hoochies and wedding rings, mostly chartruse and orenge.. Some were hotter than others. For several hours on tues. only the apex was on, but later hoochis ran the table. Go figure.... but everything cought fish trolled slow in 35 ft of water. Cant get back for a few weeks, hope the bite stays hot.. Fish averaging 13 to 15 inches and fat. Most action in front of the dam..

KilKenny
07-25-2011, 11:28 PM
Just got back from Heron today. Had to leave due to a pesky long term power outage and genius me left my generator at home. I couldnít charge my trolling batteries or cool the wife during the afternoon heat.

I had a pretty fair fishing trip, sometimes awesome and sometimes downright sad. My eagle fishmark 320 took a dump on its third season. Iím hoping the transducer is the culprit. Internet chatter is that the Lowrance/eagle transducer is the weakest link. It would show downrigger balls and not much else. When it was new I could see the thermalcline layer and each blade on my flasher rig.

I didnít realize how much I relied on the fish finder to locate and work schools of fish. I kinda looked where everyone else was fishing but the traffic seemed to move daily and I troll so slow by the time I got there they all moved some where else haha.

Overall the fish were nice with some in the 16Ē range. I only keep fish large enough to filet since most of my fish get smoked.

Heading back up Thursday with a new transducer and a back to basics look at everything including downrigger wire stray voltage

KilKenny
07-25-2011, 11:31 PM
Ralph, I just read your post about the fish at 35 ft, I was fishing at 20....gota get my fish finder fixed.

KilKenny
07-25-2011, 11:33 PM
Anyone ever use black panther martins for kokanee? The guys at stone house lodge say thats the only thing they use, Ive thown them on from time to time and never had a bite on one?

KilKenny
07-25-2011, 11:43 PM
Heading here the second week of August. We will be fishing from sailing kayaks and plan to just use a fish finder and jigging. We've never fished for Kokanee and need some tips on lures and good spots of the lake.

Anyone use these jigs? http://www.kokaneetackle.com/p-320-p-line-kokanee-jig.aspx

Would love to troll with planners or downriggers but just can't in the Kayaks, just we will have to revert to cast and jigging I suppose at about 35' depth.

Thanks,
Roy

Roy, you may be able to try a little trolling with a planer, if you can move about 1.2 to 1.4 mph you can catch kokanee. As for jigging, I donít have any experience with that, maybe someone else can help. It would be helpful if you have a fishfinder to locate schools and find their depth. Good luck.

RalphL
07-26-2011, 01:36 AM
Anyone ever use black panther martins for kokanee? The guys at stone house lodge say thats the only thing they use, Ive thown them on from time to time and never had a bite on one?

Sorry I missed you, PM me or post when you head back, we can get together and double team them. What is the story on the power outage, was it out at the campgrounds? Willow creek or Blanco?? How long?? Stay between the Island and shore, when it slows down there go between the island and the dam. Bright color in tha AM and flourescents and orenge in the pm. They go deep when the suns high and bright, 30-35 ft. Never tried the Panthers other than along the shore for the Rainbows. good luck

KilKenny
07-27-2011, 03:27 PM
Called today, the power is still out at Blanco and Willow camp ground. The wire from the road to the camp ground power station burned up underground so they decided to string it above ground. The poles are set they just need to string the wire. Could be any day now.

RalphL
07-27-2011, 04:04 PM
Wow, guess I got lucky pulling out when I did, bet the camp hosts are frying. Cant get back till Aug, our boats are at the marina and we can always sleep and cook on the toon. Thanks for the heads up, keep me posted..

niswanger
07-27-2011, 04:06 PM
Okay, I'm getting pumped up about our trip to Heron, we are completely noobs at fishing for Kokanee and Lake Trout. I've caught brown and cut-throat up in ID before on light spinning and Rapala Stick baits but that's the extent of my experience. I'm going to detail what we are planning:

First, this is where we are staying (top of map, green arrow):

http://www.motleypixel.com/public/posts/heron_reservoir_fishing.jpg

Where’s the dam located, is the island in the center the island you all are talking about? Are my markings on the lake map correct, any other good spots for Lake Trout or Kokanee?

Here’s the main rig we will use to fish:

http://www.motleypixel.com/public/posts/trolling.jpg

Yep, a sailing kayak, with out-riggers, fish-finder, and rod holders. I wish we could just jig for Kokanee but it sounds like for the 2nd week of Aug. we’ll want to troll at about 1.5mph at 35’. So with this in mind and the use of an Abu Garcia 5300 bait casting reel and 7’ medium action rod, I believe some trolling with the following tackle will work, please chime in if I’m off track.

First, I have 20lb yellow braid on the reel. I guess I could go with this lead core instead: http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=1096947&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6ca8e2ceac107054075ee618d41a497d&WTz_l=Header%3BSearch-All+Products&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp Will this be enough to get my terminal tackle down to 35’? Planning on the 14lb test lead core.

How about this, here’s my short shopping list for trolling for Kokanee, help me configure a good Kokanee rig, down to how to space and tie things up:

http://www.motleypixel.com/public/posts/tackle.jpg

Links to the products:

Flasher (size 8” white glow?): http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=702048&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6cb4b215ac107054075ee6184d46e66d&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp
Bananna Trolling in-line weight (1 oz size?): http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=744118&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6cca3eefac107054075ee618c51ca484&WTz_l=Header%3BSearch-All+Products&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp

Deep 6 size 0 (40’ depth): http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=702097&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6ccf4a7aac107054075ee618a7a07693&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp
Double Whammy (orange/chrome): http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=739479&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6cac181cac107054075ee618fdd6fd97&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp
Macks Wedding Ring Single Hook Orange and hammered nickel spoon: http://www.cabelas.com/catalog/product.jsp?productId=703208&categoryId=0&parentCategoryId=0&subCategoryId=0&indexId=0&itemGUID=6cb09de9ac107054075ee6180856af00&destination=/checkout/basket.jsp
And of course the lead core line above.

I’m thinking of setting out with two rod-reels, one for trolling Kokanee and one (smaller bait caster with 6.5’ med action rod and 14lb test line) for jigging etc.

I want to stay as simple as possible, focused really on just having fun but would love to put a Kokanee filet on the grille 

Thanks,
Roy

RalphL
07-27-2011, 04:34 PM
Yes, thats the only island,, the dam is south and west of the island, Get a couple of watermellon apex,, use a dodger,not a flasher. As I understand it the dodger moves side to side and the flasher spins, My only flasher is a line twisting SOG. Dont be afraid to get close to shore south of the Island if things slow down. Put your rig in at the dam ramp even tho you are staying at Laguna vista, much faster than putting in at Willow than sailing (against the prevailingwinds) all the way past the island to get to the fish..Dam launch is the best fastest launch area for your boat... Good luck

niswanger
07-27-2011, 04:54 PM
So deep 6 or weighted line, then dodger, then this apex lure in watermelon color? http://www.cabelas.com/product/Hot-Spot-Apex-Salmon-Killer/727281.uts?Ntk=AllProducts&searchPath=%2Fcatalog%2Fsearch.cmd%3Fform_state%3D searchForm%26N%3D0%26fsch%3Dtrue%26Ntk%3DAllProduc ts%26Ntt%3Dapex%2Btrolling%2Blure%26WTz_l%3DHeader %253BSearch-All%2BProducts%26x%3D11%26y%3D8&Ntt=apex+trolling+lure&WTz_l=Header%3BSearch-All+Products

Thanks for the dam tip...yep don't want to have to sale/pedal against the wind.

-Roy

RalphL
07-27-2011, 05:52 PM
others may have different ideas but I terminate my lead line with a high quality swivel, than 18 in of mono,dodger snubber,18 in leader to lure. Use your wedding rings as well ,,just have the apex as a backup

niswanger
07-28-2011, 04:38 PM
others may have different ideas but I terminate my lead line with a high quality swivel, than 18 in of mono,dodger snubber,18 in leader to lure. Use your wedding rings as well ,,just have the apex as a backup

Thanks again for the help, I understand everything up to the dodger/snubber. Right now a buddy at work bought me all of his old pac nw terminal tackle (mostly trout and salmon gear). I have one of his dodgers in my hand now (just chrome with a swivel only on one end and then the other end has a small eyelet, then swivel, then clip. So from the fishing line (I guess in this case it must be lead core if we are not using downriggers or planes), then tie a good swivel, then 18Ē to the swivel end of the dodger, not sure what a snubber does, then on the back side, depending on the action of the lure a 12-18Ē leader to lure.

Buddy also has a lot of different banana weights (swivel on one end and then a few metal beads to an eyelet. How might I use these to troll? He said he used them with horse-hair jigs for Kings off the Keni (sp?) river in Alaska from the bank but used it as a bottom weight with a tri-swivel the leader to the weight was low lb test so it would break easily.

I guess a picture of a setup would work wonders :)

Thanks,
Roy

KilKenny
08-11-2011, 01:27 AM
Thanks again for the help, I understand everything up to the dodger/snubber. Right now a buddy at work bought me all of his old pac nw terminal tackle (mostly trout and salmon gear). I have one of his dodgers in my hand now (just chrome with a swivel only on one end and then the other end has a small eyelet, then swivel, then clip. So from the fishing line (I guess in this case it must be lead core if we are not using downriggers or planes), then tie a good swivel, then 18” to the swivel end of the dodger, not sure what a snubber does, then on the back side, depending on the action of the lure a 12-18” leader to lure.

Buddy also has a lot of different banana weights (swivel on one end and then a few metal beads to an eyelet. How might I use these to troll? He said he used them with horse-hair jigs for Kings off the Keni (sp?) river in Alaska from the bank but used it as a bottom weight with a tri-swivel the leader to the weight was low lb test so it would break easily.

I guess a picture of a setup would work wonders :)

Thanks,
Roy

Roy, I have a basic rig in my Kilkenny photo album if you want to see it. The dodger goes about 12 inches above the lure and the snubber, if you use one, would go above that. I think most people put the snubber between the dodger and your flashers or lead line or banana weights. The snubber is just a piece of surgical style tubing with swivels at either end. Its job is to be a shock absorber so the kokanee cant rip the hook out of their soft mouths when they yank against your pole and all the stuff you have on it.

I am not super up on this since i use downriggers and ultra light poles and small spinning reels. Not the typical rig you will see at the boat ramp. I use these small light poles and reels as my snubber. The pole is really soft and i hold it light so the fish can have its head while I just keep tension. The reels have a light fine adjustable drag which I will loosen just to the point where i can reel if the fish takes a break. If its a big one and he is really stripping line I will palm the spool to slow him down. I love the action and have a high catch rate with this setup

The fish are hitting well at about 27 ft

Good luck

RalphL
08-21-2011, 12:27 AM
I just got back from 10 days at Heron. Caught good ones on just about everything, one day Hoochies, next day Wedding Rings, and on the really overcast days the only thing that would work was a black Panther Martin and it worked very well. Fishing depth ranged from 27 foot to 35 foot. They are pulling the water level down, so you had to work the fish finder to find them as they moved quite a bit day to day, and probably will as long as they're dropping the water level so quickly. Starting to pick up some big boys in the 16 inch range. The big males are developing the kind of fangs that are really rough on tackle. Sometimes we would only get a few fish and the wedding rings would be falling apart. Absolutely fantastic week, and August is supposed to be the slow month.

niswanger
08-31-2011, 05:09 PM
Okay, we've been back for a while now. We managed to fish Heron on one day, believe it was Aug. 1st. We caught 7 between the two of us trolling from kayaks. We used 18lb lead core line (3 colors out, i.e. 30 yards), trolling really slow (1mph), 2.5oz banana weight, dodger, snubber, about 3.5' of mono leader, wedding ring (orange/pink), first hook had garlic shoepeg corn.

Here's a video...ff to about 2 mins 45 seconds into the video to see the fish: http://vimeo.com/27959327

-Roy

LarryPhan
04-23-2012, 02:38 PM
been to Heron the last two weekends. no Kokes but plenty of Lake trout. well.... not us catching but other people are catching them.

has anyone else been fishing Heron or El Vado

RalphL
04-26-2012, 02:29 AM
just returned, heading back on mon.. lot o lakers and a few koke

LarryPhan
05-16-2012, 01:19 PM
thanks for the report. I cant wait to get back on the water