On May 19, 2006 Gordon Carroll from Willard, NY was fishing on Seneca Lake south of Sampson State Park. He was pulling copper for lake trout. Gordon was taught by a friend how to pull copper about 5 years ago. This time it was Gordons turn to be the teacher. He was fishing with his nephew, 14 year old Josh Brown. The fishing was very good and they caught 5 lakers in less than 2 hours.
Sampson State Park is located on the North end of Seneca Lake. The Park is open year round and has a campground open from late April until mid November. Sampson State Park was has a long and rich history. Before becoming a state park it was a former military base. The main point on interest to NY fisherman would be the Marina which has a very nice public boat launch and 123 boat slips for seasonal and transient boaters. There are 245 campsites with electric and 64 non-electric sites. This is a very poular destination for camping and fishing so you will need to make your reservations early.
Seneca Lake is home to the following species of fish lake trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, landlocked salmon, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, yellow perch, northern pike, chain pickerel, rock bass, crappie, sunfish, bullheads, bowfin, white suckers, channel catfish, lake sturgeon, carp, alewives and smelt. The state does an annual stocking of lake trout, brown trout and landlocked salmon. The lake's rainbow trout population is sustained entirely by natural reproduction in Catherine Creek and its tributaries. So catch and release of rainbow trout in Seneca Lake is greatly encouraged.
Fishing Derbies on Seneca Lake include the National Lake Trout Derby which is held every Memorial Day weekend on Seneca Lake. The
Red Cross Fishing Derby which was a big hit with fisherman. Many fishing clubs have their own contest for bass, trout and perch here as well.
The lake trout is a member of the char family of fish. Lake trout are a native species of trout in NY waters. They can be found in the Great Lakes, Finger Lakes, and Adirondacks Lakes. These fish prefer deep colder water and can live upwards to 30 or 40 years in age. These fish can attain weights of up to 50 pounds.
The NY state record lake trout was broken by Jesse Wykstra in August 2003 when he landed a 41 pound 8 oz lake trout from Lake Erie. He was fishing the Dunkirk area using an NK 28 spoon off a downrigger.The old NY state record lake trout weighed 39 lb. 8oz. There is a real chance that a bigger lake trout is swimming in the depths of Lake Ontario but for now Lake Erie will hold the new record.