Top Tips to Catch Popular Lake George Fish
Popular game fish in Lake George include lake trout, landlocked salmon, black bass, and yellow perch. The type of fish you decide to go for should dictate the trip: where to go, what to use for bait, and how to prepare for the challenge.
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Lake George Fishing Tips
Lake trout like deep, cold water, particularly during the summer months. While it's not impossible to catch one in 40 feet of water, there will be more fish, and probably bigger fish, lurking in spots where the water is much deeper. Lake George can reach 200 feet deep in some spots, so if you're looking to catch lake trout, these are the areas you will want to look for.
In order to reach these depths from a boat, you'll need to run downriggers or heavily weighted lines. You can of course drop a spoon or a lure straight down off the side of a boat and jig, a popular method in ice fishing.
Live bait, or something that resembles bait fish anywhere from 2-8 inches in length, will attract lake trout. Lake trout need to be at least 23" long to keep on Lake George. Trophy lake trout weighing 20+ pounds can be caught on Lake Georg, and you can catch lake trout all year.
Landlocked salmon are considered by fishermen to be one of the hardest fighting freshwater fish out there, making them a popular target. Salmon cruise around the lake up near the surface looking for smaller fish to eat (smelt), and once hooked, they take off like a bullet, often jumping all the way out of the water during the fight. Troll some light tackle behind your boat not too far below the surface for the best results.
Salmon will chase and eat the same bait as lake trout for the most part. Landlocked salmon need to be at least 18" to keep on Lake George. An ice fisherman caught a 35" landlocked salmon in February of 2016 that weighed in at over 15 pounds - the largest salmon caught on Lake George in about 30 years! Landlocked salmon can be caught all year.
There are smallmouth bass and largemouth bass in Lake George. Smallmouth bass are more common and tend to put up a better fight. Black bass like to hang out in warm, shallow water as opposed to the cold weather creatures above. Bass can be caught with both live bait and artificial lures, and they should be targeted around underwater structures/plants.
Regular bass season runs from the third Saturday in June through November 30. They must be at least 12" in order to keep. 4 or 5 pound trophy bass are caught every year on Lake George.
Black bass can also be caught on Lake George from December 1 through the Friday preceding the 3rd Saturday in June. However, you have to use artificial lures, and the season is catch and release only.
Yellow perch are a popular game fish for ice fishermen. Every once in a while you'll hook one of them while trolling for salmon or trying to lure that bass out from the weeds. Perch like to stick together, so if you get into some, there will be more.
Depending on the time of year, yellow perch will commonly be found either near the shore or in open water. If you're fishing for yellow perch throughout the summer, try catching them in deep, open water! Small bait fish and jigs are popular with fishermen seeking perch. The daily limit is 50 fish per person, and yellow perch can be caught all year.