Fishing for Smallmouth bass in Indy
When I tell people that our lake at Capitol City Conservation Club has some good size smallmouth bass in it they just can’t wrap their head around it. “Indianapolis is not known for smallmouth fishing” – is what I am told. Maybe not but most streams and rivers in Indiana have smallmouth bass in them. They just get overlooked. Here at our property at 1116 W Troy Ave we have a 30 acre lake with depths up to 50 feet – with lots of smallmouths.
My first Smallmouth
One day while fishing for Trout in early spring, (just after ice out) I hooked onto a whopper of a rainbow trout, or so I thought. Within five seconds it came up out of the water and did that familiar tail dance that smallmouths do. What a surprise! When I got him to shore I quickly released him and estimated his weight at about 3 lbs. I had no scale with me so it was a guess. This was in 1993 soon after we acquired the lake. I never knew we had smallmouth in our lake. I caught 6 more that spring and with a scale they weighed in at 3 to just under 4 lbs. Over the next few years I caught more – so did other members – but I never heard of one being caught over 4 lb 10 oz. Then I found out why………
Catch and release
I found out that some members were taking the smallmouth out of our lake to populate their friends ponds, get mounted for a trophy on their wall or to simply eat. This had to stop if you wanted to keep a good stock of smallmouth in our lake and to potentially have bigger fish. Five years ago we started a catch and release only program on our smallmouth bass and it is working. Now you hear sizes of 5 to just under 6 lb smallmouths being caught. Last year in early spring one was caught and released weighing in at 6 lb 5 oz. Not bad for a city lake. So it proves that catch and release does work. If you ever hook onto one of these fish you are in for an exciting time. The prime time to fish for smallmouths here is in the spring. They are caught throughout the year but are harder to find. We do have a larger population of large mouth bass which will be discussed at a later time.
Right here inside the city limits of Indianapolis (less than 2 miles from the center of town) is our club lake with a good population of smallmouth bass, Largemouth bass, Big blue cats, Flathead cats, channel cats, bluegills, crappie and Rainbow Trout.
Stop at the front gate and talk to the caretaker and he will show you the lake.
Check us out at:
1116 W Troy Ave
Indianapolis In 46225