I hate winter

MRS

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Been out three times and not a nibble can't find the stripers any where I am thinking they are snowbirds and left the area. Did ok on trout but stripers have left the lake.😢
 

dingbat

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Been out three times and not a nibble can't find the stripers any where I am thinking they are snowbirds and left the area. Did ok on trout but stripers have left the lake.😢
Not looking at the right spot…

Stripers will stick around until the water is mid to uppers 40’s as long as the bait is around. Find the bait you find the Stripers.

Power generation plants?
Draws them in big time during the winter.

Look for deep holes where bait congregates during winter. Light tackle jigging ( 1- 1.5 oz jighead with a 6” stick baits (BKD) works well once fish are located.
 

MRS

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Not looking at the right spot…

Stripers will stick around until the water is mid to uppers 40’s as long as the bait is around. Find the bait you find the Stripers.

Power generation plants?
Draws them in big time during the winter.

Look for deep holes where bait congregates during winter. Light tackle jigging ( 1- 1.5 oz jighead with a 6” stick baits (BKD) works well once fish are located.
Been looking for them it is a landlocked lake so I know they have to be some where in there. Can find them in spring and summer just not in the winter I know a spot that is 200 plus feet deep will have to look there next time out.
 

Sprig

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Striper are bass and like a little warmer water than trout. When the water cools down in fall and winter the striper go off the bite. They aren’t as aggressive and won’t move far to chase bait or bait fish. If you are using bait you need to get it close to the fish. Also I find adding some kind of scent to what ever bait you are using can help greatly. I like ProCure scents, specifically for striper I use Bloody Tuna, Butt Juice or Anchovy .
If you are using lures use something that rattles or vibrates to get their attention. I also put scent on the lures to entice them.
Try to find areas in the lake that may be a little warmer such as shallow areas that get sun most of the day.
Use your fish finder to find bait fish and strippers themselves. I’ve been pursuing stripper for 60 + years. I find every fall and winter in the California delta the bite slows way down due to the cooler water temps. Stay with it , you’ll find them. Tight lines.
 

dingbat

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Striper are bass.
"Black bass" are from the Sunfish family.........Centrarchidae
Stripers (Morine Saxtilla) are from the Perch family..........Moronidae
Close relatives of the common White and Yellow Perch
When the water cools down in fall and winter the striper go off the bite. They aren’t as aggressive and won’t move far to chase bait or bait fish.
Interesting.....what water temps are you talking about?

Water temps don't have a big effect on Striper activity on the East Coast. They prefer 40 to 70 degree water but are easily influenced by the presence of bait (food). Find the bait and you'll find willing and anxious Stripers in any water temp.

The mouths of the rivers are "on fire" right now with water temps at 55 degrees. The bait has typically moved offshore for the winter by the time water temps hit the upper 30's.

Had some very good days with huge, late season fish with water temps in the upper 30's, air temps in the upper 20's burrr.....
 

aspeck

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Local water temp is about 50 degrees (as it is 35 degrees with 30 mph winds and blinding snow right now). Stripers are hitting some but the Lake Trout are slamming the spoons and shiners. White perch are hitting small jigs and worms like crazy also.
 

Sprig

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Stripers in all of the west and west coast are called strippers, linesides or striped bass and are also called that in parts of the east coast. Primarily out here they are referred to as striped bass, thus we call them and consider them bass.
In the California delta which is over 1000 miles of waterways and is fresh water the best temperatures for strippers is 55 to 65 degrees. The delta does empty into the salt water bays and eventually the ocean. Many of the stripper come from the ocean and into the delta to spawn. We also have many that are permanent Delta residents. Once the temp drops to 50 and below the stripper in the delta become sluggish and the bite slows way down. You then have to really work to catch them.
I have also fished and caught many of them in the ocean and salt bays but have never paid any attention to the temps cause it doesn’t seem to matter there.
we have stripers in some fresh water lakes here and the same apples, 50 and below it gets tough to catch them
 

dingbat

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Stripers in all of the west and west coast are called strippers, linesides or striped bass and are also called that in parts of the east coast.
No strippers or linesides around here. Chesapeake Bay, Mid Atlantic. Either Stripers, Rockfish or “Beasts from the East” when the big “migrants” are around.
In the California delta which is over 1000 miles of waterways and is fresh water the best temperatures for strippers is 55 to 65 degrees. The delta does empty into the salt water bays and eventually the ocean. Many of the stripper come from the ocean and into the delta to spawn. We also have many that are permanent Delta residents.
Interesting…..Chesapeake Bay is the spawning grounds and nursery for 75% of the East Coast population.

The fish hatch and spend 3-4 years in the Bay before joining the rest of the population for the migration north to feed for the summer.

They return in mid -November to coincide with the exodus of the bait out of the Bay for the winter. The bulk of the Stripers winter right off the Virginia/North Carolina border. Usually have some Bluefin tuna mixed in with them. Keeps things interesting on #30 Striper tackle…lol

Stripers return to the Bay in Mid-February (following the shad coming back to spawn) and wait for the water to reach spawning temps mid March to Mid April. They spawn, then head north to start the whole process over.

We have 16” to 22” fish most of the year. The big fish are really only here mid-November through the first week in May.

Got to like the cold, and somewhat crazy, to be a dedicated Striper fisherman.
Leaving the dock in the dark of the early morning with temps in the teens isn’t for everyone…lol
 

Sprig

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I agree to chase stripers gotta like the cold and nasty conditions. I’m a duck hunter too, now there are some cold nasty conditions. My wife is from Pa. originally and we travel back there almost every year. I’ve been wanting to fish (with a guide) the Chesapeake for stripper for years. Will just have to do it.
Here in California striper have to be 18” to keep. Limit of 2. I release most of what I catch. I’d like to see a slot limit so the large fish especially the females are released. The large females are the major spawners.
Striper are anadromous so all stripers spawn in fresh water. The Chesapeake is definitely a nursery for them but the spawn takes place in the tributaries of the Chesapeake.
In the California delta stripers make their spawning run between April and June, some times into July.
I fish both bait and troll lures for them. Both methods are equally successful. When the water is cold I find bait (sardines, anchovies, shad, liver) with plenty of scent to work best. During the spawn and during summer large lures are best.
The stripers in the delta have mercury in them. They are safe to eat but in moderation. The mercury is here from the gold mining days when large quantities washed into some of our streams and rivers. The stripers get it from eating bait fish which have mercury.
I haven’t been out fishing for awhile, but this talk about stripers makes me want to get out there. Think I’ll head out after Thanksgivin.
 

dingbat

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I’ve been wanting to fish (with a guide) the Chesapeake for stripper for years. Will just have to do it.
I gave up my Guide license 10 years ago but still pretty active on the tournament circuit.
After 40 years of chasing them commercially, recreational and competitively, I can say they ain’t that hard to catch ;)
Here in California striper have to be 18” to keep. Limit of 2. I release most of what I catch. I’d like to see a slot limit so the large fish especially the females are released. The large females are the major spawners.
I’m the opposite….. let the little ones grow up and harvest them as Trophies. Better yet, slot them like they did Red Drum.

Drum are slotted 18”-27”. I would fully support a 32”- 38” or 36”- 40” slot for Stripers

In the Bay, we started with one fish per day, with a 36” minimum, mid April to mid May. Then switched over to two fish per day, 18” minimum of which one could be bigger than 28” for the rest of the season

But….jump in the truck and drive 45 minutes to the Atlantic and catch two per day, 28” minimum.

Making any sense?

We’re now limited to one fish per day, 19” min. and they moved Spring Trophy season back 2 weeks until in effect shutting it down. Can’t even preseason C&R which was very popular past time for Trophy hunters like myself.

Lots of charter Captans and Guides have thrown in the towel in the past couple of years. Spring Trophy season was usually booked a year in advance. Now doing days notice “walk on” trips in an attempt to make ends met.

Sorry State of affairs. Not worth putting the boat in the water for one fish, ain’t worth getting out of bed to catch 19” fish.

Have since switched primary focus to Red Drum (aka Channel Bass). They are much, much better fighters and the fishery has really taken off with the change in regulations.

Still need a 50”+ Striper to complete my Mid-Atlantic Slam (Bluefish, Striper, Red Drum and Speckled (sea) Trout) so the hunt continue until such time
Striper are anadromous so all stripers spawn in fresh water.
Or so you read….lol
In real life it’s simply not the case. Could take you to the exact location in each of the major spawning areas. On the Western side the prime locations are well below the “Fall Line” (tidal water.) Salinity is a bit lower but nowhere close to fresh.

On the East side, you looking at the low lands between the Bay and the Ocean. Most “fresh water” originates from road side drainage ditches (tide water). Again, lower salinity, but certainly not fresh
In the California delta stripers make their spawning run between April and july
End of February through the first week of May. Middle of March is prime
I fish both bait and troll lures for them. Both methods are equally successful.
Live lining (live bait) is popular as is “light tackle jigging” which is using LM bass weight tackle (#10-17 rods) with 9”-12” lg stick baits.

My preferred method for the big boys is trolling. Run up to 20 rods using planer boards. Large baits are the key but elephants eat peanuts as well ;)
I haven’t been out fishing for awhile, but this talk about stripers makes me want to get out there. Think I’ll head out after Thanksgiving
If the weather holds, heading out for my annual trip after thanksgiving. Opening day of deer season. The “outdoorsmen” are in the woods leaving 4,500 square miles of prime Striper water to us fisherman…lol

If you’re ever in the middle Bay Area give me a call.. I’ll show you the ropes
 

Lou C

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Hey...
aren't you in Arizona?
if you were here in NY....you'd REALLY hate winter!
 

Sprig

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Lots of great and fascinating information here. This old fisherman has learned a lot. Thank you sir. Interesting the differences and similarities east coast vs. west coast.
20 rods on planer boards. I wouldn’t even attempt that, it would end up being a major tangled mess. Here each fisherman can use a max of 2 rods and only then if you have purchased a 2 rod stamp on your fishing license. The 2 rod stamp is good for all species in California.
Not much jigging here for striper but we do some jigging for king salmon which also spawn in the delta Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers which are a part of the delta system.
For bait Live bait catches the biggest fish. But most bait fishers around here use cut or filleted sardines, anchovies, , shad (which are great live as they also spawn in the delta), chicken livers and live pile worms.
My favorite method is trolling large jointed or brokeback rebels. The delta mostly isn’t very deep and you troll close to the bottom.
I could talk about striper fishing for days although I fish for multiple species, anything with fins.
Yes I live in California where weather and temps are mostly moderate but an hour away from me are the Sierras where you’ll find snow drifts 20’ deep and mountain storms that no sane person would venture out in. Or Modoc county in NE California where I sometimes duck and goose hunt in 0 degrees with 20+ mph winds and higher gusts. Yes I know the east coast winters, my wife is from Pa. and moved to California (before I met her) to escape those winters. When I retired I told her we could move back to Pa. and retire there and she just gave me “the look”.
 

aspeck

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Hey Sprig, nothing wrong with PA ... well, mostly nothing wrong ...
 

dingbat

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Interesting the differences and similarities east coast vs. west coast.
20 rods on planer boards. I wouldn’t even attempt that, it would end up being a major tangled mess.
You can’t troll “action” baits. Everything is “static”….. parachute baits trimmed with large plastic shad. 6” to 12” in length.

Just a matter of spacing and weight selection at that point
Not much jigging here for striper but we do some jigging for king salmon which also spawn in the delta Sacramento and San Joaquin rivers which are a part of the delta system.
Toss up between jigging and trolling being the most popular method overall.

Trolling is by far the most popular in the Spring as the fish migrate down the Bay.
Jigging is most popular in the fall when the fish are schooled up, feeding on the schools of bait moving through the area.
For bait Live bait catches the biggest fish. But most bait fishers around here use cut or filleted sardines, anchovies, , shad (which are great live as they also spawn in the delta), chicken livers and live pile worms.
Shad (American and Hickory) and Menhaden are the primary forage fish. Shad are protected so we use live Spot and White Perch for bait.

My favorite method is trolling large jointed or brokeback rebels.
Too small for the fish we’re chasing.

"Matching the Hatch" requires much larger, 9" and 12" baits.

My favorite is a tandem rig. A 3oz lead head with 6” shad on long leader (18’) and a 6oz lead head with 9” or 12" shad on short leader (6’).
Use a 6 oz. in-line sinker back 150ft. and wait.......

Funny story... the last guy that thew a Rebel off my boat had it come back crushed with the back half missing. No match for the Bluefish that frequent the area.

The delta mostly isn’t very deep and you troll close to the bottom.
In Spring, the fish are close to the surface taking advantage of the early season Sun warming the surface of the water. Troll the surface down to 20-25 ft. in depth.

The fish are deep in the fall. Caught my biggest Striper (48.5) trolling in 95 ft of water. Using 16-24 oz in-line sinkers is the norm.

I also run a pair of Umbrella rigs deep with down riggers.

Yes I know the east coast winters, my wife is from Pa. and moved to California (before I met her) to escape those winters.
Can’t judge our weather (Md.) by Pa standards.

The Gulf Stream (80F+ water) has a strong influence on our weather. Average high in January is 50F, average low of 35F with a scattering of 60-70 degree days thrown in for god luck.

What makes fishing brutal is the humidity. A 40 degree day with 100% humidity and a bit of NW wind is bone chilling.
 

aspeck

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Ayyyy, we had 3 foot waves, 20+mph winds, and 30 degree temps today on the lake. Was hunting instead of fishing ... fun!
 
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