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John Flannery

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About John Flannery

  • Rank
    ISA Forum Registrant
  • Birthday 07/01/1956

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Wheaton, Il.
  • Interests
    Multi-species angler. Love the stream and Great Lakes smallies, also the salmonids in Lake Michigan and especially harbor browns and stream steelhead. Lake Erie walleyes and perch as well.

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  1. John Flannery

    High water smallmouth

    I have not. I did explore the area right before the Mazon goes into the Illinois. It gets narrow with a lot of twists and turns, then swampy. Definitely minimal wintering habitat. I have caught smallmouth around the rapids near Marsailles and near the remaining rocks from the demolished bridge in Peru. I should check out the river around Morris since that has to be where they go.
  2. John Flannery

    High water smallmouth

    Great information! On the migration issue, I really think fish do different things in different systems. I have a lot of experience on the Mazon, which has very limited access. On that stream, all of the bass winter in the Illinois . They migrate up usually in April, stay through spawning and go back down in October. I remember one warm fall I was fishing on Halloween. There were no bass in the normal summer spots, so I just kept wading downstream. The water was low and clear. Once I got to the deepest spot in that section , I found a hole that literally had hundreds of bass of all sizes in it. They were very inactive. Since the water was so clear, I could see pods of fish leaving as a group heading downstream. Just for fun I went back the next day and they were all gone.
  3. John Flannery

    High water smallmouth

    Great info, Phil. Something I can add to the discussion is that I have had my five best days on the Kankakee fishing up in the creek mouths when the river is high ,muddy and rolling and the creek itself has already dumped it's water into the river and starting to clear. It's almost like most of the smallmouth (and walleyes as well) that are normally spread out in the main river find their way in there, becoming highly active on crankbaits. Has to be timed just right, but it is a great pattern.
  4. John Flannery

    Teckel Sprinker Frog

    Great idea on the grass!
  5. John Flannery

    Too much time on my hands

    That is hilarious. I can relate. I have one neighbor who has gone to "native plant landscaping" aka ten foot weeds in August, so I have Canadian thistles invading from that side. The neighbor on the other side has a lawn mostly consisting of creeping charlie, so I am fighting that back there. The creek at the back of my yard has a healthy stand of garlic mustard that keeps invading, and finally the guy across the street has so many dandilions it looks like he painted his yard yellow. Surrounded.
  6. John Flannery

    Advice on getting kids into fishing

    All great advice. As somebody who has 15 years of experience taking mentally ill 10-15 year-olds fishing every week during the warm months, (over 500 trips) , I have learned a thing or two. (Not that your friend's grandkids are impaired, but I have seen most things that can happen). First and foremost, there is regrettably a lot of liability exposure in something like this. My co workers thought I was nuts to set up a program like I did, but I am committed to the sport and believe it has therapeutic value . Safety is a major priority and I insisted that all kids wear safe sunglasses, hats, enclosed shoes and long pants and sleeves unless it was really hot. I also did an age appropriate safety orientation, not enough to scare them but enough to know that hooks and fish spines are sharp, and that you need to know where your hook is at all times to prevent hooking somebody. Then casting practice like Rich said ,especially teaching them to cast sidearm and check behind them before casting. If you can frame it in responsibility terms like shooting a bb gun the kids really buy in . All hooks should be barbless at least at first. No treble hooks. The venue is huge all kids want action at first and don't care about species or size. I was lucky enough to find a place with a nice dock with abundant bluegill, minimal weeds and a railing. Imagine corralling 5-8 kids with bipolar, adhd, and autism without that! Look for a place like that and prefish it yourself to ensure some success. 15 years of experience resulted in the following rig: light spincast rods with six pound line, very small clip bobbers ( pear shaped tangle less) 1/64th or 1/32th oz. Jigs with small crawler pieces or maggots . The jig instead of a regular hook prevents fish swallowing the hook, preventing the trauma of killing a fish and ruining the day . Keep it short and leave when they are catching and they will want to come back. If they get bored and start focusing on other things, go with it . Make it all positive. Even though you go barbless, get a pair of long handled curved hemostats to grab the hook, flip the fish and release them with a shake, and you won't get hooked in the hand or finger. Kids are somewhat unpredictable at first till they get their coordination down. You are a great human to take this on. Hope my experience helps. It is a lot easier with one or two kids. Good luck and good fishing!
  7. John Flannery

    The Ned Rig

    Back to the Ned Rig. Durability wise, in April I caught 46 smallmouth, and 13 rock bass on one TRD in green pumpkin goby and a half Strike King Zero in green pumpkin on two Mister Twister Weighted Keeper Hooks in 1/16th and 1/8th in extremely rocky areas. Lost nothing, Still using both. Though the plastics are a little beat up, they seem to work better the more beat up they get.
  8. John Flannery

    The Ned Rig

    The orange /gold J-11 used to be a top choice for early season trolling on Lake Michigan. Now you need to change out both the split rings and the hooks, because even a bigger coho can straighten one or the other out. I have had pretty good results with Daiichi and Gamakatsu replacement trebles but it is annoying to have to replace them when you are paying 8 bucks for the lure in the first place. The split rings are incredibly flimsy .
  9. John Flannery

    The Ned Rig

    Right about the hook quality, Mike. Definitely need to sharpen them. The other slight adjustment I make is to slightly file down the size of the barb which results in better hooksets and makes it easier to release fish that get the hook in a hard area of the mouth without tearing them up. I still have a barb , but it is smaller. Slider heads are great, too Eric.
  10. John Flannery

    The Ned Rig

    Don't fish the Kankakee as much as I used to, but the area I have been fishing on the Dupage is very rocky as well. The only weighted keeper hook I have lost in the last two years was due to a bite off. Mister Twister makes them . The 1/0 1/16th oz, and 2/0 1/8th should fill 90% of your river fishing needs. The hook size keeps increasing with each step up in weight, which makes the heavier ones only good for bigger plastics like Erie Darters or big grubs. If you are using it for the Ned Rig, make sure you push the hook all the way through the plastic and make sure the aren't any strands of elaztech holding the hook back or it will interfere with good hooksets. Then just snug the hook point up against the plastic, exposed and you are in snag -free business. Having left more lead on the bottom of rivers than my body weight, I' m glad I learned this from Ed Mullady, and had it reinforced by Norm Minas years ago.. Since then , I can fish snaggy areas and not have to carry 10 pounds of lead in my vest or spend half my day retying. Just make sure you check your line for nicks, because you will have to retie a lot less. Hope this helps.
  11. John Flannery

    Suggestions for Kayak Research

    This is really helpful, guys. I'm planning on getting one this summer and thought I had made up my mind . This provides a lot of food for thought. Thanks.
  12. John Flannery

    Wader Repair

    Agreed on Aquaseal. Developed a seam leak from rubbing three years ago. Used it all the way down both inside seams and it is still holding.
  13. John Flannery

    Outdoor notebook and bob m

    Definitely a class act and a tireless promoter of the sports we all love and conservation. I know the era of newspapers is coming to an end, but the online sites are not the same. When you think of some of the great writers Bob was able to assemble over the years, it is impressive. Bill Osuch, Frank DeFrancisco, Gino Altiery, Rich Piet, Jonn Graham, and a whole lot of others. A lot of great local information. Glad to hear he is in the HOF.
  14. John Flannery

    Outdoor notebook and bob m

    Last May or June was the last issue. Bob wrote a thank you letter on the back page.Both Bob and his wife were having some health issues that made continuing the paper impossible. He said in the letter that he intended to continue his radio show. I am out of range for WJOL so I don't if he did or not. As a contributor with pictures and the monthly DesPlaines Lunkerbusters meeting notice, the paper will be sorely missed by me personally. The Lunkerbusters were the first club to use the ON to promote their meetings and many others followed suit over the years. The ON to me was like a monthly reminder of the Northern Illinois fishing community in a way. Bob should be inducted into the fishing HOF in my opinion.
  15. John Flannery

    What do you do next?

    Good point, Phil. My guess is that their capacity for memory is not more than a few minutes. Even after a hard fight, I have caught the same steelhead out of a hole 10 minutes after I caught him the first time on several occasions. When we had a cabin up north, my dad and I caught the same 18" smallmouth that had a split fin nine times in one summer.