Pennsylvania Outdoor News Fishing Report – Sept. 29, 2017

Anglers are reminded that fall trout stockings are underway at a limited number of fisheries around the state.

For a schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com

NORTHWEST REGION

Lake Erie, steelhead tributaries — A few steelhead were moving up Walnut Creek to the Falls and in Elk and Crooked creeks in mid-September, but most catches were coming on spoons at the mouths in early morning hours. Fish were running 23 to 24 inches and 3 to 4 pounds. When conditions allowed, the walleye and perch bites were still going strong in the lake in mid-September, with walleyes hitting crawler harnesses and spoons in anywhere from 65 to 80 feet, depending on location, and perch in 62 to 65 feet off the Lighthouse, the Point and Shorewood. Some steelhead were mixed in with the walleyes and taking spoons and plugs. One bass angler reported the smallmouth bite was picking up in early September, with some nice fish coming in about 20 feet.

Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — Shore anglers were catching perch, bluegills, and a few crappies off the south, north, and east piers, and the border dock. Some large perch were hitting minnows at Dobbins Landing and the lake west of the Lighthouse, and crappies were active in the marinas.

Bull Dam (Erie County) — Anglers reported catching northern pike in recent weeks.

Union City Dam (Erie County) — Trout, catfish and walleyes were biting for some anglers in recent weeks.

Lake Pleasant (Erie County) — Trout and panfish were reported in recent weeks at this 25-acre natural lake.

Edinboro Lake (Erie County) — Numbers of perch, crappies, and bluegills were reported as conditions allowed through mid-September.

French Creek (Erie, Venango, Crawford, Mercer counties) — Kayakers reported a good walleye bite in mid-September. One angler caught several small bass, about 10 to 12 inches, and a few 15 to 18 inches but said the bite was slow overall.

Woodcock Creek Lake (Crawford County) — Numbers of panfish were reported in recent weeks.

Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — Some anglers were catching walleyes and muskies in the Shenango River below the dam, but fishing pressure on the lake was light through mid-September. Catfish were hitting on crawlers from the causeway. Bass and a few perch were reported, along with the occasional walleye. A good panfish bite was reported by anglers hang-gliding in about 13 feet over brush. Crappie sizes were mixed.

Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — A nice sunfish bite was reported in late August, with large pumpkinseeds and bluegills hitting on this large natural lake.

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — A mixed bag of perch, crappies, catfish and bluegills were reported along with the occasional walleye in recent weeks. Largemouth bass were hitting but sizes were running small.

Shenango River Reservoir (Mercer County) — Numbers of white bass were reported on crankbaits on shallow water humps and points through mid-September. Hybrid striped bass, about 12 to 16 inches, were running with the white bass schools. Largemouth and smallmouth bass in mixed sizes were being caught around schools of young shad. Channel catfish were hitting live bait. Crappies were generally small, about seven to 9 inches. Walleyes were hit or miss, with a few hitting on humps in the early evening hours.

Shenango River (Mercer County) — Catfish, including a 26-pound flathead, were reported in recent weeks.

Allegheny River — Nice numbers of smallmouth bass up to 19 inches were reported on the middle river in recent weeks, with soft jerkbaits effective for some anglers targeting pockets along riffles, and the tail-outs and heads of pools. Tubes, flukes, and swimbaits were effective for some anglers, and topwater lures were the ticket just before dusk. A few walleyes were reported, with one angler releasing a 10-pounder.

SOUTHWEST REGION

Ohio River (Allegheny County) — Falling water temperatures in mid-September started to spur the smallmouth bass and walleye bites, with fish hitting jigs and live minnows. Catfish were biting chicken livers and crawlers.

Yellow Creek Lake (Indiana County) — Nice-size catfish were reported off the North Shore boat launch, and the launch near L & M Campground. Largemouth bass also were hitting, as were northern pike and sunfish in recent weeks.

Blue Spruce Lake (Indiana County) — Largemouth bass were reported in recent weeks, and trout were taking minnows.

Keystone Power Dam (Armstrong County) — Boaters reported catching muskies up to 50 inches in recent weeks.

Mahoning Creek Lake (Armstrong County) — Yellow perch, bluegills, rock bass, and other sunfish were hitting in recent weeks.

Brady’s Run Lake (Beaver County) — Channel catfish up to 23 inches were reported in recent weeks.

Youghiogheny River (Fayette County) — Smallmouth bass, freshwater drum, channel catfish, rock bass, and the occasional walleye were reported in recent weeks.

NORTHCENTRAL REGION

Sinnemahoning Creek (Cameron County) — Bass were hitting live bait, spinners and poppers in recent weeks.

West Branch Susquehanna River (Lycoming County) — Bass were hitting a variety of baits and lures. A few walleyes and muskies also were through mid-September.

Rose Valley Lake (Lycoming County) — Good bass and panfish bites were reported on live and artificials in recent weeks.

Fishing Creek (Clinton County) — Water temperatures were in the mid-50s in mid-September, when water levels often were low and clear. Small Mayfly, Stonefly, and Caddis nymphs were effective in the early morning to mid-day hours. Productive patterns included Frenchies (14-16), gold bead Pheasant Tails (12-18), Prince nymphs (12-16) and Green Weenies (12-16). Trout were rising occasionally to Tan Caddis (14-16), Blue-winged Olives (18-22) and midges (22-26).

West Branch Susquehanna River  — Anglers were catching bass on poppers, crankbaits and spinners during mid-day to evening hours through mid-September. A few walleyes also were reported.

Foster Joseph Sayers Lake (Centre County) — Anglers under the causeway were catching crappies minnows and twister tails under bobbers in recent weeks. The Hunter Run Cut area was yielding channel catfish to crawlers and chicken livers, especially during evening hours. Numbers of yellow perch were reported along with crappies at the spillway shoot, with live baits and lures effective. Most anglers were fishing from the walls.

Bald Eagle Creek (Centre County) — The lower reaches were yielding trout to small dry flies and streamers in recent weeks. Bass and fallfish were hitting spinners, small streamers and poppers.

Black Moshannon Lake (Centre County) — Chain pickerel and bass were reported on spinners and rubber worms, with the access areas productive.

Spring Creek (Centre County) — Water was in the low 60s and at good levels in mid-September and anglers were catching trout on Tan Caddis patterns on top. Nymphs such as Green Weenies, Walt’s Worms, small Mayfly and Midge larvae patterns were effective throughout the day. A dry dropper presentation, with Caddis on top and a wet ant below, also was productive.

SOUTHCENTRAL REGION

Susquehanna River (Cumberland County) — In mid-September, anglers were awaiting the walleye run, which typically is triggered by water dropping to about 65 degrees. A few walleyes up to 19 inches were reported near York Haven.

Susquehanna River (Dauphin County) — Smallmouth bass were hitting top-water lures in the early-morning and late-day hours in mid-September.

Memorial Lake (Lebanon County) — Anglers were catching largemouth bass, chain pickerel and crappies on live minnows in recent weeks.

Juniata River (Huntingdon, Mifflin counties) — Wading anglers were catching some nice smallmouth bass in recent weeks.

Juniata River (Perry County) — A good smallmouth bite was reported on various plastics, including four-inch rubber worms, tubes, and minnow patterns. Live baits such as hellgrammites and stonecats also were effective.

NORTHEAST REGION

Susquehanna River (Luzerne, Columbia counties) — Cooler weather in mid-September spurred the smallmouth bite, with soft plastics and crankbaits effective. Live bait anglers also were doing well.

Lehigh River  — Nice catches of trout were reported in mid-September by anglers fishing dries during a hatch, and nymphs throughout the day. Terrestrials were producing. Anglers were catching eels in the river at the spillway of FEW Reservoir.

Lily Lake (Luzerne County) — Nice-size largemouth bass were reported in recent weeks at this Big Bass Program fishery. Boaters are reminded that the high-speed zone will be removed Oct. 1, when the lake returns to “Slow, no-wake.”

Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) Striped bass, walleyes and brown trout were hitting through mid-September. Catfish, bluegills and perch also were reported. Crappies were expected to become active in cooler weather.

Duck Harbor Pond, Prompton Dam, Delaware River (Wayne County — Walleyes were starting to hit at all three fisheries in recent weeks.

Susquehanna River (Susquehanna, Bradford counties) — A decent walleye bite was reported between Oakland and Hallstead. Live bait was the ticket, although jigs and spinner baits also were working. Smallmouth bass were active from Sayre to Wysox.

SOUTHEAST REGION

Marsh Creek (Chester County) — Bluegills and crappies were hitting jigs and mealworms, waxworms, or minnows around structure near shore in recent weeks. The bass bite was mixed, with some anglers reporting success on jigs, spinners and crankbaits, or large rubber worms in black, purple, and pumpkinseed. Crayfish, minnows and night crawlers were effective live baits. One angler caught a five-plus pound largemouth. A 36-inch muskie was reported on a soft plastic bass lure.

Schuylkill River — The smallmouth bass bite near the Cromby Power Plant outflow and the railroad bridge was decent for anglers fishing crankbaits and live bait in mid-September. Large flathead catfish were being caught on bluegills and crawlers. Channel cats were hitting chicken livers. Anglers are reminded to steer clear of the fish ladder at Black Rock Dam, since the Fish & Boat Commission cites anyone caught within 100 feet of the ladder.

Lake Tuscarora, Locust Lake (Schuylkill County) — Perch were reported on crawlers in the morning hours of mid-September. Trout angling also picked up with fish coming near-shore and taking minnows and butterworms.

Schuylkill River (Schuylkill County) — Catfish were hitting chicken livers, nightcrawlers and shrimp near Landingville in recent weeks.  The bass bite was good in the mornings and at dusk on rubber worms and crawlers, but slow during the day.

Little Schuylkill River  — The delayed-harvest, artificial-lures-only section was yielding trout to flies in recent weeks. Ants remained effective during cool mornings.

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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