Sunday, December 20, 2009

Anthracite Outfitters 2009 season re-cap


First and foremost to any who may be reading this, on behalf of Anthracite Outfitters LLC, Eddy Rider and I {Fish Tank}  wish you and yours a safe, healthy, and Happy Holidays. May the ensuing new year prove to be fruitful, and may trophy fish grace your continued kayak fishing and angling pursuits!!! CHEERS!!! 

As I type this inches of snow have fallen here in the past 8hrs. Many of you may be witnessing the snowfall measured in feet. Aside from our beloved , resident,"Southern Derelicts" , many of us have taken measures to ensure our  kayaks enjoy a peaceful, and safe winter hibernation. Many of us have stowed the rods and sorted the lures, as well eagerly await the arrival of Santa Clauss and the accoutrements of the kayak angler he hopefully has placed on his reindeer driven platform, which are destined to be placed under our Christmas trees.  For me, whom as Eddy Rider says; is afflicted by a "psycho fishing obsession" , this is a particularly restricting, and trying time of year. I am writing this at 2:40am and if the temps were above freezing I would either be flycasting to trout or targeting walleye in my riverine eddies. However, it's below freezing and I can't afford to destroy a fly line with ice, the eddies on the river where the walleye are, are shielded in ice  from my column probing lures, and my lakes have yet to build an ice sheet that would support my 265# petiteness. Given this seasonal weather induced condition I have no other recourse than to reflect upon the past angling year. This reflection always sees me delving into my angling archive of photos, captured for this occasion, whereby I may escape winter's angling prison. 

The embedded video is a collection of Anthracite Outfitters' finest times upon the water this past season. I took all the captures and highlights of the past season and created a slide show whereby one, who shares my "psycho fishing obsession", may briefly be removed from the throngs of our winter encapsulation and be reminded that winter, like time, continues to move along and before we know it our kayaks will be wakened from their hopefully brief slumber.

I hope you enjoy this piece and may winter be swift, and our ice encrusted waters soon be accessible by kayak!!!

Tight Lines and Enjoy!!!

Fish Tank


Friday, December 11, 2009

Anthracite Outfitters prefrontal walleye bite 12-08-09

Anthracite Outfitters prefrontal walleye bite 12-08-09

I hit my pet winter eddy again today. Here in Northeast Pa we are prefrontal. The weather all week has been cool, with daytimes hi's barely above freezing if that. There is a major system baring down on us, and as I type at 11:15pm the wind is howling. That means one thing, the walleye will eat. Today the air temp. by the water was 38degF. That's a perfect temp because when the air gets to 32deg the eyes on the rod, and the braid on the reel ice up and fishing becomes a chore.

The area I was fishing had a moderate main river flow, with a long, barely noticeable eddy and back flow. I can't emphasize enough how valuable it is to locate these eddies for winter time walleye success. Not only do these offer the prey the ability to conserve energy, it also offers the prey, the walleye, the perfect vantage point to ambush forage which also seek the eddies to escape the main flow. The rule of real estate is etched in stone, Location, Location, Location.


The Rapala xrsh08 in olive. The walleye were all over this lure today, and it was the only one they would touch. I did have a couple twister tails bitten off earlier in the day, but once the sun got behind the mountain this Rap bait was gold!!!


The xrap shallow shad can cast. I was throwing a cast as far as I could. I varied the direction of the cast from quartering upstream, to straight out, and then quartering downstream. All three directions proved effective, as that varied the approach or drift of the lure into the seam areas of the contrasting flows of the main current and eddy. In all cases the technique remained the same:

1- after the cast, get tight to the lure with the rod tip pointing straight at the lure.

2- sweep the rod tip approx 135 degrees across the body in an upstream arc.

3- without causing the lure to resist the current, or in other words, letting the nuetrally boyant lure fall back, let the rod tip fall back to the starting position while taking up slack.{stay in touch with the lure}

4- Repeat steps 2-3 one more time{at the end of step 3 pause, staying tight for 5 sconds approx}

5- At this point the tension on the lure lets off because the lure had come through the main flow and was now in the outer edge of the eddy. From here on in it was one or two light pumps on the rod tip with varying lengths of pauses until the lure was retrieved all the way in. This lure swims and rattles with the lightest amount of retrieve.

The hits came as a THUMP. For a split second one may have thought they hit a snag. Then the rod came to life. Every walleye I caught over the course of 4hrs hit either on the pause, or right as the lure started back up after a pause. Not one fish or hit on a steady retrieve of any speed.{I tried that too, NADA!}


13 fish hooked

8 landed, four fell off because they were only about 16" and I was horsing them in. The last fish of the day rivaled the second fish of the day, approx 28" and I lost it and the lure because I was on a mud bank that was soggy, sloped off into 5' of water with muddy bedrock on the bottom, and it turned when I went to swing it out of the water. I am using 10#tensile Power Pro leader to 18" of 12#floro.

1 fish kept. The fish in the top image and only because it inhaled the lure and tore a gill in the fight. I brought it home and ate one fillet for dinner and am saving the other for Christmas eve. The fish in the image above is 28" on the button and pulled the bogas to 7#'s even. The fish that took my lure was equal if not bigger. Of all the fish landed most were easily 18" with only one landed being 16".


I was on foot because I can not afford a dry suit. If I had a dry suit, given that there is a launch right across the river and a bridge just down stream, and not to mention the creek mouth where I hit a 40" musky in the summer, I would have caught a HECK of alot more fish today had I been able to safely paddle alone in the near freezing temps!!!

Tightlines, safe paddling, and if the river doesn't ice up the walleye will bite all winter.

Fish Tank

Monday, November 30, 2009 Kayak Blowout Sale

The guys at are at it again with a Kayak Blow Out Sale.

The sale is for PHONE ORDERS ONLY and the ACTUAL SHIPPING COSTS WILL APPLY or you can stop in the retail store in Mine Hill, Nj and save BIG!


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Billy Bob's HillBilly BBQ.....

Billy Bob's HillyBilly BBQ is a small unassuming shack that is located just over the Levee from the Sunbury Launch just below the fabridam. This is a family business that is run by some of the niciest people who take the time to make sure the food is perfect and the atomsphere is welcoming. Everything is basically served to go with some picnic tables right outside. The food is outstanding and slow cooked to perfection and followed up by a sauce that is out of this world.
After putting a full day in on Saturday with travel and kayakfishing in the susquehanna river below the fabridam we were hungry. When we arrived that morning we could smell the smoker/cooker going and saw the sign, we were having BBQ for dinner without having to do anything, but walk 50 yrds. We went over the hill around 6:30 to see what the BBQ shack was all about, right away we were welcomed by Ed jr and a friend who were ready to explain the menu and cooking process in a heartbeat, gave us some recommendations and we order basically everything they had between Hank, John Oast and myself.
While we sat at one of the picnic tables under the corrugated tin roof surrounded by hay bales and country music I was instantly relaxed and hughly surprised by the outstanding food that was in front me. Hank and I were not even done with our first order when we quickly placed another order to eat for later in the night while we fished......
I recommend this place to anyone who fishes that launch or lives in the Sunbury area. The food is great, the service is awesome and its homemade and run by a local family. What more could you ask for.
Located on the southside of Subury, PA on RT. 147
570-286-4BBQ (4227)
Open year round thursday thru Sunday
11am to 7pm

Friday, October 30, 2009 for those of you that are not familiar with the company is a total resource for the sport of kayakfishing. They have a retail store in Mine Hill, NJ and are the worlds largest online retailer of kayakfishing equipment on the web. The web forum is a great resource for information from rigging and repairing a fishing kayak to where to fish. Its an international forum with posters from as far away as South Africa and covering the United States and Canada with active members provding information from top to bottom.

The staff at is the most knowledgable in the industry and will be able to help with any order or question that a customer might have regarding the sport of kayakfishing and its nuances. sells every product that would be needed to rig your kayak and again the forum members and the rigged kayak section are there to help with any ideas that you might have in rigging your kayak.

Check out for ALL of your kayakfishing needs.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Anthracite Outfitters trip summary and report: 10-18-09

We had out clients, Wade and Tom for a day trip on the Susquehanna. The weather forecast was for inches of snow changing to rain with wind. Lo and behold we got a break, and the weather turned out like this...

It turned out to be sunny with a few hours of no wind. Eventually the wind kicked up sustained at about 5mph and gusting to about 20mph. It wasn't too bad because it was a Northerly and that doesn't stack the rapids. Up river blows are nightmares. Ask Eddy Rider!!!

Both Wade...

and Tom hit their fair share of nice smallmouths. Both stuck with swimming plugs all day. Tom was hitting on a traditional floating rapala in fire tiger, while Wade was hitting on a rapala x-rap suspending slash bait in the olive color scheme. The fish were in a 3'-8' column and hitting the plugs on the stop at about 4'. Both gentlemen did a dynamite job working this bite!!!

Thankfully they were able to get out with us when they did. The river today is at 18' and the level in these images is about 11'. Needless to say the past week's rain events may have ended our season. I am hoping that we have mild temps so if the river comes down we may get one or two more cracks at it before freezing temps halt everything.

Suffice it to say that the river doesn't look like this today...

That's an island in front of Tom and today it is most likely submerged.

Eddy Rider and I will most likely fish lakes now until ice starts forming which will halt any kayakfishing.

Stay tuned as Anthracite Outfitters will be doing video how to's and seminars on all facets of our genre of kayak angling in rivers and consequent angling techniques.

Tightlines and Safe Paddling!!!

Fish Tank

Sunday, October 25, 2009

River Levels Surge Again.....

Well the rain came down in NEPA over the last few days leaving the river running high and fast. The gauge at Meshoppen was up and then had a brief down turn before being pushed up again to 16.65ft @ 33,200CFS at 8:00am on the 29th of October.

Susquehanna Fishing Magazine Out in 2010!!!

Saturday, October 24, 2009
NEW Susquehanna Fishing Magazine Out in 2010!!!

Susquehanna Fishing Magazine will be a free resource for anglers throughout the Susquehanna River regions of New York, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. This print publication will be released in early 2010, and will be available free at local retailers. Our goal is to inform the angling community of the most productive fishing techniques, while promoting responsible conservation of this vital resource.

Submit your photos, articles, and letters.

Now recruiting advertisers and distribution locations.

Join Susquehanna Fishing Magazine on Facebook: Blog:

Susquehanna Fishing Forum:

Contact Email:


Office: 570-441-4606

Mailing Address:

13 York Road
Bloomsburg, PA, 17815

Monthly Printing Objective: 30,000 copies

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A day on the water with Anthracite Outfitters - 9/18/2009

Highlights from a day trip on the North Branch of the Susquehanna River with Dan & Hank from Anthracite Outfitters ( Awesome fishing & a great shore lunch that consisted of chicken & spanish rice wraps, coffee, and...last but not least...some fresh walleye fillets. Footage was shot by Hank & I on our Olympus 1030 SW digital cameras. Music composed & recorded by my father, Stephen Adams.
(Footage by Jon Adams)

Sunday, October 18, 2009 Kayakfishing Video Report: 10-18-09 Shamokin Dam, PA kayakfishing video report for October 18, 2009, from Shamokin Dam, Pennsylvania:

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Antharcite Outfitters & Jon Adams Lackawanna River 10/14

FishTank Hank from Anthracite Outfitters and Jon Adams hit the Lackawanna River for some trout. The bite is on and we are in full swing.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 10/19 video report: Sunbury Walleye

Pennsylvania Kayak Fishing Association

Check it out for updated launch spots and reports from around the state......

Anthracite Outfitters trip summary and report: 10-10-09 to 10-11-09

You can read the Anthracite Outfitters report here at the Anthracite Outfitters KayakFishingStuff Blog.

Fishtank Hank wrote:

"The Fall bite is in full swing. We launched Saturday afternoon, fished, set camp, fished, and fished all day Sunday. We had our friend Jon Adams out with us as well.

The weather was cooler and we launched on the backside of the front that came through. The water is still crystal clear even with a slight bump in volume. I started off with a spook and stuck with it the whole trip. The trick was to get into current areas where the boulders and big rocks are in a 3' to 6' column, also the shoreline drops adjacent to deep water that have the longest sunlight exposure this time of year, and best of all the moving water tail outs where a cast almost onto the shore was employed. Once the spook hit it had to rest for 5 to 10 seconds. Then it was a 1-2-3 slash cadence to the spook with another pause. Usually the pause was short lived as an explosion usually occured. If the fish missed, just pause and start the spook up in a choppy walk and the fish was right back after it.

I can't stress enough the importance of letting it rest "til the rings clear" and the pausing the retrieve on the spook and just letting it drift or sit. 90% of the fish hit the spook while it just sat there. Keep in mind I was throwing a regular zara spook that has a loud rattle. So while it appears to be there quietly, when it is drumming on any semblance of chop, either created by wind or current action, the rattle is clunking, putting out the vibe. It's also a good sized meal for a smallie with fall inspired feed bag on. EddyRider saw this first hand when he missed a swipe from a BIG bass.

Jon was also putting fish in the yak. He was working his go to soft plastics, both finesse style and twister tails. He had his groove on by working low in the column.

All in all it was great fishing with some areas holding good concentrations of fish to the point you could have worked and reworked the area all day and caught, if you didn't need to pull 10 miles down stream.

The aesthetic of the season is in full swing as well. The mornings are cool and misty and envelope you in fog. Then the sun burns it off and the multi-hued leaves show a robust saturation of warm tones in the full sunlight.

The only drawback is the daylight is getting less and less.
The upside is that the walleye should get into full swing soon!!!"

Tight lines and safe paddlin'!!!


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Anthracite Outfitters Welcomes John Oast

Anthracite Outfitters is proud to annouce that John "Toast" Oast of the fame has joined the line-up of guides for the Susquehanna river region. John brings a lifetime of fishing and kayakfishing knowledge to Anthracite Outfitters and will help to expand our area of operations to the Bloomsburg area. We look forward to the 2010 season with John on board.