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Hudson River - Striped Bass Fishing
It wasn't that long ago that the idea of fishing the Hudson River was laughable. Now, striped bass fishing on the Hudson is definitely a go.

The stripped bass is an ocean going fish that comes into coastal rivers to spawn. Each spring, large schools of this hard fighting game fish head up the Hudson River in New York turning that river into one of the most exciting game fisheries in the United States. From the Tappan Zee Bridge outside of New York City up river into the heart of the state, the fish move toward spawning grounds feeding on shad and herring. It is their schooling and heavy feeding tendencies during their spawning run that makes them both an easy and a challenging fish to pursue.

The season on the Hudson River for stripped bass fishing runs from March 16 to November 30. No license is needed to fish on the river, but one is needed to fish on any of the tributaries leading into the Hudson. So, it is wise to be careful if you do not have a license and stay on the main river. Any fish under 18 inches long must be returned to the river and there is a limit of one fish per day per angler. This limit makes stripped bass fishing on the Hudson River an ideal catch and release area.

One of the things that will amaze you about this fish is that they grow very, very large. It is not unknown for an angler to snare a 40 pound stripped bass during the spawning run. There are a lot of different types of fishing and lures that can be successful on your quest for a stripped bass. Since the spawning fish are following the herring and feeding on them with a pre-spawning hunger, it stands to reason that herring makes good bait. You can use live herring presented in a natural manner or use cut chunks of herring. Either method is equally successful.

Another thing that makes Hudson River stripped bass fishing such a good deal for the Northeast angler is that you can have just about as much luck right from the banks of the river as you can from a boat. It might take a little looking around, but generally shallow areas by the banks and areas where small streams run into the river are gathering spots for the stripped bass. The main advantage of a boat is the ability to follow the schools of fish around the river. Most locals suggest eels as the ideal bait when fishing from the boat, although shad can be used as well.

Trolling is a good way to locate the schools on the river. Many different spoons and spinner baits can draw fish when trolled behind the boat. Once one fish is hooked, you are usually assured of a lot of action because of the schooling nature of the fish. Remember that this fishing is for sport.

Most of the Hudson has been closed to commercial fishing because of high levels of PCBs found in the fish. Over the years, a great deal of effort has been made to clean up the river, and there is already talk of opening sections of the river for commercial fishing again. Although this is good news from an environmental standpoint, there is a lot of opposition from sport fishermen who want to protect this amazing sport resource.
About the Author
Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - makers of travel journals to preserve your travel experiences.
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