Captain Jim Steel
Fishing began as a child, as young as he can remember. He spent his time on the lakes and rivers of Western New York, researching and learning techniques and mostly teaching himself. Starting out with a small runabout and gradually working his way up over the years to a fully rigged charter/tournament boat. The fun of fishing as a child started 40 years ago and fueled his obsession as an adult and created the drive to share information and the passion with others to enjoy our incredible fishing this area has to offer. Jim has also volunteered through the years for several charity groups including creating the WNY Heroes Fishing Day. This annual event has grown into taking 150 veterans out fishing on Lake Erie.
Owner of Dream Catcher Sportfishing and operator of the 31' Tiara, "Dream Catcher", Jim is a U.S. Coast Guard Master Captain, 50 ton and near coastal certified since 2012. He was Vice President for the last few years and has now taken the role of President of the Eastern Lake Erie Charter Boat Association for 2023. The ELECBA is an association of credentialled captains and mates that have become the voice for the local fishery, marinas/harbors, and waterways. Jim spends some of the springtime fishing for salmon and trout on Lake Ontario and the rest of the season for walleye and trout on Lake Erie, chartering and tournament fishing. To see more about Jim and Dream Catcher Sportfishing, visit the website at www.dreamcatchersportfishing.com. They are now offering instructional, hands-on, on-the-water charters to help the beginner to advanced anglers.
The Dream Catcher Sportfishing tournament team participates in all the major walleye tournaments in the Eastern Basin of Lake Erie. They are proud that their teamwork and dedication, which has consistently put them at the top of the field. A few of the team's highlights include 1st place overall and 3rd place heaviest fish in the 2019 Northern Chautauqua Conservation Club Derby and finishing with 2nd heaviest fish and 3rd place overall in the 2016 Sunset Bay Shootout, 2nd heaviest fish and 6th place overall in the 2015 Sunset Bay Shootout as well as winning the Amara-Can tournament in 2012 just to name a few.
Conducting many seminars and presentations at fishing clubs, outdoor shows and educational venues as well as representing manufacturers (Church Tackle, Torpedo Fishing Products, Traxstech, Challenger Lures, Three D Worm Harnesses, Fish Hawk) at dealer shows and events gives Jim the ability to share his knowledge, experience and expertise as well as promote the area, fishery, techniques, and products to educate others to increase their success, covering all the bases.
In 2012, Jim and his wife/fishing partner, Diane, took their passion for the outdoors to a new level by creating Innovative Outdoors. This business focuses on promoting fishing and hunting and products that have been personally tested and proven, they sell what they use. Shop online at www.innovative-outdoors.com or visit the Innovative Outdoors booth.
Experience NY Outdoors, created in 2020, is a TV show that features outdoor sports, events, and venues, predominantly fishing and hunting throughout New York State, and occasionally other areas of the country. The focus is showcasing areas, techniques, or talents in outdoor sports. The show airs on TV stations in Buffalo, Rochester and Elmira along with YouTube and other media. Check out www.experiencenyoutdoors.com or visit the booth.
A new partnership for 2023 with the Greater Niagara Fishing & Outdoor Expo is the Beginner Walleye School. This class is for anglers who are looking to learn how to fish for walleyes or have dabbled in the past. The focus will be on trolling including bottom bouncing and other presentations, gear, locations, habits, and migration. After taking this class, you will have the knowledge and resources to help maximize your success. A great way to meet and network with other anglers with the same interests. A few other charter captains will be involved during the classes to add input from their experience. Check out the agenda at www.innovative-outdoors.com on the "Education" page.
Innovative Outdoors Walleye Challenge Tournament (www.innovative-outdoors.com)
Lake Erie Walleye Series (www.lakeeriewalleyeseries.com)
New York Walleye Derby (www.newyorkwalleyederby.com)