Welcome to our newest column, Jefferson Woods and Water, focusing on hunting and fishing in the area.

The following report comes from Dino at Garden State Bow & Reel.


The water is a little high with the water starting to heat up a little later than usual so everything is a few weeks behind. The Watershed is doing well with small mouths hitting and large mouth bass found on beds.  Herring is the number one bait for local lakes with shiners sometimes getting hits.

Trout is no longer stocked. There are plenty left in the rivers, but you must get off the beaten trail and try new places in order to catch them.

The live fly hatches for fly fishing are light this year but things will get better and better.


Turkey season just ended and it was the best in a long time with people checking in with over 100 birds.  Some people are turning to woodchuck hunting.  You must knock on the door of the individual landowner to get permission.  Many will be willing to let you hunt, especially in the larger fields where the animals do damage by digging holes.

Garden State Bow and Reel is located at 2760A Route 23 Stockholm, New Jersey. They can be contacted by phone 973-697-3727, or online www.bowandreel.com.


The following fishing report comes from Laurie Murphy of Dow’s Boat Rental.

We are still seeing Hybrid Stripers and Walleye hitting at night on Bombers and Zara Spooks with fish up in the 7-pound range.  We have a large selection of these lures so stop in and check them out.  Bomber has come out with a dozen or so new colors.

John Saltzman weighed in with a 3 lb. 12 oz. Rainbow Trout caught while fishing at the State Park using metal spoons.  Mike Rastiello had several nice Hybrids while fishing with live herring, his largest weighing in at 8 lb. 9 oz.  Rob Piotrowski Jr.,  also while fishing with herring, had himself a 3 lb. 8 oz White catfish.

Still seeing lots of nice yellow perch and crappie; remember that the Largemoth and Smallmouth Bass season will open on June 16th.

The Knee Deep Club will be holding their Bass contest on Sunday, June 25th.  They will also be holding their Junior Derby and handicapped outing along with a BBQ this Saturday, June 10th at Memorial Pond in Mt. Arlington.  Any help is appreciated.  The State will be holding the first of their two free fishing days this Saturday June 10th with no license required. What better time to take up a new activity.

Dow’s Boat Rental is located at 145 Nolan’s Point Road in Lake Hopatcong, New Jersey.  They can be contacted by phone 973-663-3826.

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Michael Chirichella has worked in the Sports Information Departments of Marquette University, the University of Dayton and the University of Memphis, where he also served as a staff writer for University's Office of Media Relations. He's also served as an interim sports editor for weekly newspapers in Central and South New Jersey. He can be reached at michael.chirichella@thejeffersonchronicle.com.