Some people think of fishing as something that only people with boats or money to burn can enjoy. Others believe it is too difficult for them to learn, while still some think that it is boring and fruitless. I’m here to convince the skeptics and those that don’t think themselves capable otherwise.
I’ll be bringing you a series of articles on local fishing spots as well as instructional articles to teach you about different kinds of tackle and it’s best application. Anyone can fish; it’s just a matter of knowing what to look for and what kind of tackle to use once you find a suitable spot.
Today’s pick is the Cuyahoga River in downtown Kent, specifically Riveredge, which is directly across the road from Tannery Park. While normally Tannery Park would also be a good place to get your feet wet in the river, the drought has lowered the river considerably. But this shouldn’t discourage you, in fact, it can actually work to your advantage if you know the signs of a good fishing area.
The primary thing you want to look for in an area such as this where the water levels are low are deeper pools of slower-moving water. It just so happens that there is one such pool at the bottom of the stairs after you cross under the bridge. These pools are usually host to fish that have been trapped by lower water levels on either side of them and can at times contain larger fish.
There are several such pools along the path and with the low water levels can be easily accessed. If you don’t mind getting your feet wet you can even access deeper parts of the river on the opposite bank by wading out to rock shelfs and exposed parts of the rocky bottom.
During a short three-hour period of fishing my family and I pulled 13 carp, a small bluegill and a couple of rock bass out of the water. While none of these fish were anything to write home about they were still fun to catch and these catches were made often enough to make this an ideal catch-and-release outing.
If you’re looking for a local fishing hole that doesn’t require driving out into the country to have a relaxing outing for yourself or something to entertain younger fishers then I would definitely suggest this location in downtown Kent. It’s easily accessible, there are fishable pools in the river and you can easily dip your feet in the water to cool off some if the sun gets too hot for you.
The Proper Tackle:
Tackle is often hard to navigate, especially with the growing number of choices available. For this outing it’s best just to use a very small hook with a worm on it and a bobber. You can also use an ant lure with a small bit of worm on it, which you can see in the picture below. At about 50-cents each these are cheap ways to make your bait just a little more enticing and they can be used for any number of smaller breeds of fish such as bluegill, sun fish and rock bass.
When it comes to bobbers there are a plethora choices out there as well. While it is tempting to go with the traditional sphere-shaped red, white and blue bobber these can be detrimental to your fishing. The two points at which the line attaches create tension on the section of line below them. The fish can sense this tension and it is often the reason for nibbles without productive bites. It’s much better to use the needle style which only attach at one end. This keeps the tension on the following section of line lessened, which can make fish more apt to bite rather than just nibble.
I almost never put a line in the water without a metal lead attached to the hook. This is entirely optional but I prefer it because it adds durability to the part of your line that is going to see the most abuse, whether it is from the teeth of your catch or debris and sediment on the bottom of the body of water you are fishing in.
Where To Cast:
It’s best in a river to cast a bobber upstream. From here you can let it drift down until it pulls near the shore line past you. This allows you to cover a large distance using the current of the water, which will make your bait move in a natural way through the water and be more enticing to the fish below.
Keep your eye out for hot spots along the drift of your bait. If you notice a spot in its path where you are continually experiencing hits, then focus your casts on that area. Chances are the current is slower in that area and there is a fish or two moving around the area looking for food.
While plummeting water levels have trapped larger game in deeper parts of the river this is still an ideal location for a relaxing day of catch and release for yourself or your family.