Lake Erie — Walleyes were reported just about everywhere in from 35 to 70 feet in mid-July. Many were sub-legal; the bigger fish were generally in the deeper water. Crawler harnesses in purple and black and copper and watermelon were effective. Jigs, drifted, also were productive. Some perch limits were reported east of Shade’s Beach in about 50 feet, and off Walnut in 53 feet. The perch bite was hit or miss. Bass, including some 5-pounders, were reported, with anglers doing well drop-shotting in 25 feet.
Presque Isle Bay — Most smallmouth bass had moved out of the bay and into the main lake by mid-July, but largemouth bass were biting on Texas-rigged plastics on grass beds in the bay. Some nice perch also were reported. Walleyes occasionally were caught on crawlers by shore anglers.
Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — The daytime walleye bite turned on in mid-July for anglers drifting jigs and crawlers or crawler harnesses off weedbeds. One nighttime angler did well casting a shallow-running minnow imitation over weeds. Numbers of bass were reported on various presentations. Crappie and bluegill fishing was good around islands on the north end and off the Andover causeway, and a few small perch were being caught. Some crappies were taken on drop-shot minnows, and others on small soft plastics. Some crappies were grouped on brushpiles or cribs in deeper water. Catfish were all over the lake. Muskies up to 40 inches also were reported.
Woodcock Creek Lake (Crawford County) — Smallmouth bass were reported in shallow water in mid-July. One shore angler did well on tube jigs.
Shenango River Reservoir (Crawford County) — Channel catfish were everywhere in mid-July. Hybrid striped bass were biting Bomber Long-As and feeding on top, along with white bass, in the early morning and late-afternoon hours. Crappies were hitting around the lake, although many were running small.
Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) —Some bluegills were hitting in mid-July. Largemouth bass were reported. One angler caught a 20-incher on a purple plastic worm. Crappies also were hitting, but the bite had slowed.
Allegheny River (Venango County) — Bass up to 19 inches were reported on tube jigs, crankbaits, spinnerbaits, and other lures in mid-July. Walleyes also were reported.
Justus Lake (Venango County) — Nice numbers of largemouth and smallmouth bass were reported, but many were running sub-legal in size in mid-July. A 45-inch tiger muskie was reported. Bluegills also were biting.
Sugar Creek (Venango County) — Smallmouth bass, including a 20-incher, were reported in recent weeks, with drifted crawlers effective.
Ohio River (Allegheny County) — Night-time catfishing was productive on chicken livers, small bluegills, and other go-to baits as of July 19. Smallmouth bass and walleyes also were hitting in the late afternoon and early evening hours.
Monongahela River (Fayette County) — Catfish, bass, and freshwater drum around 20 inches were reported. The channel catfish were biting baits off the bottom.
Youghiogheny River (Fayette County) — Some nice smallmouth bass and trout were reported through mid- and late July. Soft plastics were taking the bass and trout were hitting nightcrawlers.
Youghiogheny River Reservoir (Fayette, Somerset counties) — Smallmouth bass and walleyes were hitting through mid-July.
Laurel Hill Lake (Somerset County) — An early morning trout bite was reported in early July.
Somerset Lake (Somerset County) — Channel catfish and largemouth bass were reported on this lake, where seasons and size limits have been removed in advance of dam repairs.
Quemahoning Reservoir (Somerset County) — Some nice walleyes were reported in recent weeks.
Yellow Creek Lake (Indiana County) — Largemouth bass, yellow perch, northern pike and walleye were reported on this Big Bass Program water in mid-July. Muskies under 40 inches were hitting on large shiners.
Blue Spruce Lake (Indiana County) — Trout were reported on minnows in early July.
Keystone Power Dam (Armstrong County) — Largemouth bass, yellow perch, and bluegills were reported. Shore anglers reported muskies under 40 inches.
Dutch Fork Lake, Cross Creek Lake (Washington County) — Largemouth bass up to 4 pounds were hitting on slow-moving soft plastics and live crawlers in mid-July.
Hammond Lake, Lyman Lake (Tioga County) — Bass were hitting whopper ploppers, creature baits and crankbaits through mid-July.
West Branch Susquehanna River — Smallmouth bass were hitting live minnows, Rooster Tails, crankbaits, and poppers through mid-July. Some smallies were reported in shallow water near islands, grassbeds, and submerged logs.
Bald Eagle Creek (Centre County) —In early to mid-July, trout and bass were hitting Green Weenies and green mop- flies. Spinners and live minnows were taking trout in the early morning hours. Carp were reported on crawler bits and Squirmy Wormy flies.
Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) — White perch were reported in recent weeks. A 1-pound, 12-ounce white perch taken July 11 on a live alewife by a striper angler appears to have tied the current state record. It was 14 inches long and had a 11.5-inch girth.
Juniata River (Juniata, Perry counties) — Nice smallmouth bass were reported in mid-July, with tubes, spinnerbaits, and live baits such as crayfish, hellgrammites and shiners effective. Some late evening top-water action was reported. Catfish were hitting cutbaits, shiners and crawlers. Boaters in the Mifflintown Access area were catching both channel cats and flatheads.
Holman Lake (Perry County) — Panfish were hitting small tubes with 1⁄64-ounce jigs near structure through mid-July. Largemouth bass also were reported.
Pinchot Lake (York County) — Crappies were hitting live bait and hybrid striped bass were taking chicken livers through mid-July.
Lake Marburg (York County) —Bluegills and white perch were reported under the bridges by anglers fishing live bait and soft plastics.
Long Arm Reservoir (York County) — Catfish and walleyes were reported by anglers trolling the bottom of the lake in the early evening hours.
Lake Winola (Wyoming County) — Bass were biting around lily pads, docks, and other structure and off rocky points through mid-July. Soft plastics and jigs were effective. Panfish were hit or miss. Some trout were still being taken on pastebaits on the bottom or live bait suspended close to the bottom.
Harveys Lake (Luzerne County) — The perch bite had slowed by mid-July.
Susquehanna River — Some nice catfish were reported through mid-July. Smallmouth bass were hitting but many were undersized.
Frances Slocum Lake (Luzerne County) — Bullheads were hitting off the mooring area near pavilion 3 and in the nearby cove through mid-July. Various baits on the bottom were effective.
Upper Woods Pond (Wayne County) — Trout, largemouth bass, and smallmouth bass were hitting. Large live bait and deep-diving crankbaits were the tickets.
Long Pond, Duck Harbor Pond, Prompton Dam (Wayne County) — Largemouth and smallmouth bass were hitting through mid-July.
Delaware River — Smallmouth bass were hitting, with stonecats one of the better baits.
Susquehanna River — Smallmouth bass and walleyes were hitting from Oakland to Hallstead, with jigs and medium shiners effective.
Mauch Chunk Lake (Carbon County) — Perch up to 13 and 14 inches were hitting in early- to mid-July. Bass were biting, although many were under 15 inches and therefore sub-legal on this Big Bass Program water. Crappies were reported.
Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Striped bass and walleyes were reported in the evenings and during early morning hours through early- to mid-July. Catfish, panfish, and white bass were biting in the coves.
Lake Ontelaunee (Berks County) —The largemouth bass bite slowed in a mid-July heat wave, but some anglers were working crankbaits and plastic worms around lily pads. Carp and channel catfish were hitting under the old West Shore Drive Bridge.
Delaware River (Bucks County) — Striped bass were reported from Trenton to Stockton through mid-July, with the bite coming on live eels, white perch, and plugs around bridges. From Washington’s Crossing to Lambertville, anglers were catching striped bass on eels, soft plastic shad bodies and poppers. Smallmouth bass were taking soft plastic worms rigged wacky-style, and crayfish imitations up and down the river.
Schuylkill River (Montgomery County) — Flathead catfish were hitting American eels, bluegills, and white perch below the Black Rock dam through mid-July. Channel catfish were hitting nightcrawlers, shrimp and chicken livers, and carp were biting boilies and different doughbaits.
Little Schuylkill River, Schuylkill River (Schuylkill County) — Trout fishing was good in the early morning hours in mid-July, with fish taking crawlers, minnows, and spinners. The midday bite was tough.
Tuscarora Lake (Schuylkill County) —The bass bite was hit or miss through mid-July. The weedy end of the lake was yielding panfish. A few chain pickerel were reported but the walleye bite had slowed.
Locust Lake (Schuylkill County) — Trout had moved to deeper water by mid-July and were accessible only to boat anglers. Largemouth bass, sunfish and chain pickerel were reported near shore.
Compiled by Deborah Weisberg