NANFA-- River Reef ..History,,slightly Off topic

kahley (
Tue, 10 Jul 2001 10:10:36 -0500

At 02:16 PM 7/9/01 -0400, wrote:
>this is very interesting. for several years you have done this! and slowly
>aquiring knowledge,

Very slowly, I'm afraid 'cause I've been doing this for at least 12 yrs...

a not so brief history......
I am almost the quintessential example of a "River Rat", born a half block
from the Susquehanna. Bought my first boat at 13 yrs.old for 130 bucks and
later my family upgraded to a 17fter w/motor. Working 3rd shift to pay for
I'd sleep on the boat, tucked into a backwater in these islands during the AM
and swim and snorkel (and party <grin>) in the PM.
Eventually, I quit school and bummed around the country and my father sold
the boat. I returned and settled "inland" to get away from the flood plain.
I couldn't stay away from the River though and bought a canoe and with the
aid of an electric motor, made the trip up-river to the islands. Problem
is, I get
so terribly motion sick, I couldn't stand to be on the canoe if there were
about. I'd set up a lawn chair in the water near the shore, to use as a base
for the day. The canoe was really suicidal though, because of the bigboat
wakes and I bought another boat, eventually the pontoon. I started the reef
building in '89 ( i think) but the original reef was solidly built and did
not provide
desirable habitat fir anything other than crayfish and
minnows. Eventually, I did learn
to sculpt it more thoughtfully and built more and deeper. As more fish
moved in,
my interest grew....perhaps i should say "wonder". I finally had an
aquarium that
was big enough that i could get into and swim with the fishees <grin>. The
bass were
like my Oscars, the Sunfish Groumis, the Shinners tetras. A
gallon community tank with a concentrated, established population.

The inner reef is on a drop off, between ten inches of water (at current
river levels and approx
20 in during June) and about three foot of water on the outside. The water
deepens to about
four foot deep on the outside of the second rock reef and five feet for the
third 'reef' which
is a compilation of boulders, rocks, and logs. It has been in it's current
configuration for about
seven years....major changes only done when winter ice damming knocks it
flat and
scrapes many of the rocks downstream requiring a rebuild. The final reef
is really just a series
of piles of big rocks awaiting a connecting log. The distance between the
outermost construction
and the island is probably about 30 feet. Since the area is also used by
boaters, I really can't
extend further out than that. Local fish and game have had a lazze-faire
attitude about it and I
don't want to push my luck. I'd guess that each reef is probably only about
25 to 30 feet long
but I've never measured them.


Iding has been a recent interest. Around here, most people know five
groups of fish...
bass, catfish, panfish, bait and junk. Ooops....forgot Mr Muskie. Most of
my friend's
eyes glaze over when I start talking about my reef , so more specific
nomenclature has not been necessary. I don't really have a scientific mind
and have been content with the wonder of it all. The Peterson's is
but I haven't a clue as to how you get a fish to roll over so you can get
a good look at the underside for iding <grin>.

As to my plans for a hookie day today, ain't gonna' happen . Just couldn't
squeeze a weeks worth of work into 18hrs....not without ripping the phone line
out of the wall......drat.....

>if you can post any pictures of your stream bank... that would be cool.

I'm afraid a picture of the area would show nothing but water and a tiny
strip of beach,
and the uppermost edge of a set of steps I have built of rock and gravel
filled, 'found' old tires
to allow me to get back on the boat which is moored in water too shallow to
use my ladder.
Also this allows my dogs to come and go to the island if they need a break
from the wakes.
I tried, several years ago, to take some underwater photos with a
disposable camera
but it didn't really work. Maybe I'll try again....

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