Alum Creek musky foraging on shad

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    REYNOLDSBURG, Ohio — The state of Ohio is rich with trophy musky fishing opportunities, particularly evidenced by the new state record tiger musky caught outside of Akron last April (31.64 pounds).

    Ohio DOW has an aggressive musky stocking strategy in several lakes throughout the state which gives anglers good prospects for trophy fish. Alum Creek Reservoir located in Delaware County, for example, has been stocked with over 44,000 musky since 1994. This lake offers one of the best opportunities in the state to stick a pig musky this fall.

    Local experts

    Doug Zupan of the Reynoldsburg Gander Mountain store is a local resident musky expert. Another top musky fishing sharpie is Neil O'Brien, who serves as the second vice president of the Ohio Huskie Muskie Club. Both Zupan and O'Brien have caught a tremendous number of trophy-sized musky throughout the Buckeye State, and both agee that Alum Creek Reservoir is a dynamite place to hook a monster fish this fall.

    Local advice

    Zupan says he prefers trolling Lee Sisson crankbaits close to the long deep flats near the dam. He also likes the area directly across from the public beach starting at late summer. Zupan says baits should be trolled at 3 to 5 mph down to 12 to 18 feet deep. Zupan's favorite crankbait colors are shad patterns including silver, black, pearl and white.

    Fall fishing

    O'Brien says that in early fall as the water cools, the musky begin to come up from their deep haunts and roam in 5 to 12 feet of water on the shallow flats north of the Chesire Road bridge. During this time O'Brien believes the musky are keying on schooling fish and baitfsh, and will chase lures like 9-inch Sledge baits and large jerkbaits in shad patterns for long distances.

    A key strategy, according to O'Brien, is to use your electronics and your eyes to spot schools of shad. The musky won't be far away.

    O'Brien points out that Alum Creek's musky grow incredibly fast and heavy as they forage on abundant shad all summer. This past August O'Brien landed a hefty 47-incher while trolling deep water. He points out that the majority of his fish caught this year have been in the 34- to 37-inch range.

    Get there

    To access the boat ramp at Alum Creek exit I-71 approximately 14 miles north of Columbus and travel west on Route 36/37. From there head south on Africa Road - the boat ramp will be on the right.


    Gander Mountain in Reynoldsburg, (614) 856-0066.

    Material from Fishing & Hunting News
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