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Fall Fishing on the Ohio River

Updated on September 21, 2012
This plump, healthy class of hybrid striped bass is thriving in the downriver release of Markland Dam on the Ohio River.
This plump, healthy class of hybrid striped bass is thriving in the downriver release of Markland Dam on the Ohio River.
Not to be outdone by their smallmouth cousins, the Ohio River largemouth bass is a prize!
Not to be outdone by their smallmouth cousins, the Ohio River largemouth bass is a prize!
Some days  -- like those with overcast skies -- tend to produce more largemouth bass with size on the Ohio River, like this 13-inch keeper.
Some days -- like those with overcast skies -- tend to produce more largemouth bass with size on the Ohio River, like this 13-inch keeper.
This wall view of the downriver side of Markland Dam shows the release of water churning the Ohio River close to shore.
This wall view of the downriver side of Markland Dam shows the release of water churning the Ohio River close to shore.

Temperatures Drop But Action Remains

by Robb Hoff

September 21, 2012

Cooler temperatures may mark the decline of summer, but the fishing on the Ohio River doesn't have to drop. The window of activity at a spot like the downriver release of Markland Dam will still keep the cycle of baitfish and game fish in full gear, making for a fishery that will teem with action throughout the Fall season.

Overcast skies can also often help lure fish that may prefer deeper water venture a little closer to the surface or the shore, making the fishing easier in that deeper retrieves and the snags that come with them won't be quite as necessary.

The downriver release below Markland Dam is sometimes full bore; all the gates are churning current downriver, making sight fishing more difficult in the slick of broil and retrieving a little more challenging with the uptick in current.

But the rewards can be an aquatic cornucopia.

In about two hours, my son Adam and I continued to enjoy the fishing below the dam, but noticed a couple differences than the fishing we found with warmer weather, less waterflow and sunnier skies.

The hybrid striped were bigger closer to show and more plentiful.

Also, more largemouth joined their smallmouth cousins closer to shore and even some Kentucky bass were mixed among the creel. Also, the largemouth were bigger than we've caught in the past.

So as long as the water conditions and the weather cooperates, the Ohio River fishing below Markland Dam won't only be good....it will be dam good!


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