Tuesday, January 31st, 2023
Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Hot, very dry conditions starting to affect fishing


Lake Erie (Erie County) — Smallmouth action has improved a
little but is still down from last year. The best bet is 20 to 30
feet, from the cribs, moving east. Perch also have been
inconsistent with fewer limits reported than last year and jumbo
sizes hit or miss. The best bites are in the morning and late
afternoon. They had been in 55 to 65 feet, but last week moved into
the 35- to 45-foot range. Walleye fishing has improved, and they
are coming in 25 to 35 feet west of Trout Run and in 50 to 72 feet
along the lake shore.

Kinzua Reservoir (Warren County) — Decent catches of walleyes,
perch, northern pike and smallmouths are reported in the lake.
Brown trout, including a few 22 inchers, are being caught in the
river along with walleyes, northerns and smallmouths.Try

Lake Arthur (Butler County) — Bob Churilla, of Cheswick, caught
a 1-pound, 8-ounce crappie. A 22-inch largemouth bass was
reportedly caught around the 528 Bridge area. Kevin Adams, of
Butler, boated a 44- inch muskie. It was the fourth 40-plus inch
muskie landed within three days. Bluegills are hot and a lot of
catfish, including a couple of 24 inchers, are being landed even by
anglers not targeting them. A flurry of pike activity was reported
in late June. Legal-sized walleyes are reported, and hybrid
stripers at night.

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — Good walleye fishing is reported
on worm harnesses, with orange a popular color. Shawn Yeager, of
Hadley, boated a nice stringer of 18 to 22 inchers. John Petritis
Sr., of Monessen, boated a 26-inch walleye on a crank- bait July 4.
A good bass bite is reported. Al Pavlack, of Tarentum, got three
largemouths, 15 to 18 inches, in “the stumps.” Bluegills are
hitting the bays.

Tamarack Lake (Crawford County) — Anglers report that panfish
have been on the small side this year. This is a popular muskie
fishery, but sizes tend to be small.

Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — Austin Kruse, 5, landed two
bowfins, 14 inches and 25 inches, and a small turtle July 6.
Bluegills and perch are hitting in the channels.

Kahle/Justus Lakes (Venango County) — Good bass and panfishing
from shore are reported.


Allegheny/Monongahela/Ohio Rivers — Jim and Craig Bushey, of
Greensburg, boated five bass totaling 11.26 pounds to win the Three
Rivers Regatta tournament on western Pennsylvania rivers July 2, a
day after the CITGO Bassmaster Classic qualifiers headed home from
their week-long practice. Rick Vucina and Lawrence Hermes caught
the lunker, a 4-pound smallmouth. James Stevens, of Avella, won
$250 for his 39-inch catfish on the Ohio River July 2 in the
Chester-Newell Sportsmen’s Club summer-long contest. On the
Monongahela side of Point State Park, the Venture Outdoors Downtown
TriAnglers’ Marti Sanders, of Northbrook, caught a 12-inch
smallmouth bass and a 14- inch freshwater drum on minnows at the
Point early this month. Tom Lippert of the North Side Urban
Pathways Charter School caught a 17-inch smallmouth buffalo on a
chicken liver.

Youghiogheny River (Fayette County) — Mike Phillips, of
Marianna, released a 23-inch smallmouth bass on a minnow just
before dark on the Youghiogheny River July 5. Good angling is
reported for both trout and bass. The tailrace of the Youghiogheny
Reservoir was stocked with trout just before July 4.

Cross Creek Lake (Washington County) — Good angling for bass is
reported, while saugeye and panfish are a little more work. Jordan
Duhig, 12, of Bethel Park, caught a 19-inch, 4-pound largemouth
bass July 6. Evan Geiser, 9, of Carnegie, caught a 3-pound, 18-inch
largemouth on a crawler under a bobber. Tim Vercammen, Chris
Watters and Jim Yates caught 39 crappies in 20 feet, 10 feet
suspended, on jigs and crawlers.

Kooser Lake (Somerset County) — Good fishing is reported on
trout stocked for the July 4 weekend. This spring-fed impoundment
stays cool through the summer.


Curwensville Reservoir (Clear-field County) — A lot of perch
and crappies are being caught. One angler jigging a minnow for
crappies landed a muskie after dark. The back channel is yielding
smallmouths, though mostly 8 to 12 inches, and action at the dam
has picked up with two 18-inch smallies being caught on

Beechwood Lake (Tioga County) — The main bite has been bullhead
catfish, although sunfish have been biting, too. This large but
shallow lake is one of seven near Pennsylvania’s Grand Canyon, that
also includes Cowanesque, Hamilton, Hills Creek, Tioga Hammond and

Nessmuk Lake (Tioga County) — The best bass fishing of the
seven lakes near the Grand Canyon is at this big, deep impoundment,
according to anglers who are catching nice numbers of big bass,
mostly trolling live bait, or fishing tubes or spinnerbaits.

Hamilton Lake (Tioga County) — Fishing for largemouth bass has
been pretty decent with good sizes reported. Perch and panfishing
can be good here, too. Pickerel are still hitting along the

Hills Creek Lake (Tioga County) — Catches of largemouths are
reported along with bluegills in this 137-acre state park lake,
which also yields smallmouth bass, perch, panfish and the
occasional muskie. Weediness can be a problem during summer.

Cowanesque Lake (Tioga County) — Nice-sized bluegills and
average size largemouth bass have been caught lately. The gills are
coming at the mouth of the creek and below the dam. Walleyes,
averaging 18 to 22 inches, are coming below the dam on Rapalas.
Smallmouth bass are coming on jigs and a few spoons.

Crooked Creek (Tioga County) — Catfish are hitting on crawlers
and stinkbaits at the mouth of Hammond Lake.

Rose Valley Lake (Lycoming County) — Big numbers of bass are
reported, along with the occasional jumbo perch. Try minnows.

F.J. Sayers Lake (Centre County) — The crappie bite has heated
up in this 1,730-acre Panfish Enhancement Program impoundment, with
fish moving out from the banks and hitting green or white twisters.
The lake, in Bald Eagle State Park, has 23 miles of shoreline and
also offers largemouth and smallmouth bass and channel catfish.

Black Moshannon Lake (Centre County) — A 29-inch bowfin was
reported in early July but angling has been slow, overall for bass,
crappies, sunfish and other panfish.


Longpine Reservoir (Adams County) — Panfish and bass have been
coming on live bait. Try mealworms and minnows.

Raystown Branch, Juniata River (Bedford County) — Good angling
was reported over the July 4 weekend. The Pennsylvania Fish &
Boat Commission’s Jim Snyder reported catching 200 fish on a
1.5-mile float trip from Ritchey Bridge to Hopewell. The commission
reports that Justin Rasterhoffer, 14, of Johnstown, caught a
12-pound, 30-inch carp near the Cypher Beach area. This water
contains wild trout, and is also stocked in places. At Bedford, it
widens and warms up and becomes a good warm-water fishery that
includes crappies, bluegills, rock bass, largemouth bass,
smallmouth bass and muskies.

Susquehanna River (Dauphin County) — The Middletown area has
been yielding channel catfish on crawlers, hellgrammites and

Meadow Grounds Lake (Fulton County) — Largemouth bass up to 5
and 6 pounds are reported in this 200-acre State Game Land 53 lake
four miles southwest of McConnellsburg. Anglers also reported a
36-inch northern pike. This electric-motor-only water also yields
walleyes, catfish and panfish.

Lake Marburg (York County) — Largemouth bass are coming along
with bluegills, perch and other panfish above the second bridge.
Some evening catfish action is reported. Anglers scoring with

Wilmore Dam (Cambria County) — Decent bass and panfish bites
are reported in this old mining reservoir, which is 50 feet deep in
places. Bass on minnopws, panfish on mealworms.

Shawnee Lake (Bedford County) — Northern pike and a couple of
muskies have been reported in this small lake off Route 30 near
Maryland. Pike hitting crankbaits.

Wilmore Dam (Cambria County) — Decent bass and panfish bites
are reported in this old mining reservoir, which is 50 feet deep in

Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) — The hot weather slowed the
striper bite in early July, though a good bass bite was reported.
Stripers taking live trout.


Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) — Good fishing for largemouth
and smallmouth bass, excellent catches of northern pike and big
catfish up to 25 pounds, 35 to 40 inches, are reported in this
5,700-acre, 13-mile-long impoundment with 52 miles of shoreline.
The pike, as big as 15 pounds and 40 inches, are coming off the
docks on herring. Smallmouths are hitting on crankbaits and tubes.
Not much striper or trout action is reported. Largemouths are
coming off the docks and in 15 to 25 feet on Yamomoto worms.

Susquehanna River (Bradford County) — A slow, small bass bite
is reported, though water levels came up earlier this month.
Anglers have been targeting the Terrytown area with tubes. Good
catfishing continues on crawlers and stinkbaits.

Mauch Chunk Lake (Carbon County) — Soft plastics were taking
bass early this month, with good sizes reported. Decent panfish and
perch have been caught on minnows and mealworms.

Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Bruce Hoffman landed a
271/2-inch channel catfish on a minnow over the July 4 weekend on
this big, unlimited horsepower impoundment, which also fishes well
for largemouth bass, striped bass and walleyes.

Pohopoco Creek (Carbon County) — Trout were being caught early
this month, downstream of Beltzville Lake and near Parryville. This
water often fishable in summer when other trout streams aren’t due
to the bottom discharge from Beltzville Lake.

Harvey’s Lake/Harvey’s Creek (Luzerne County) — Good catches of
largemouth bass are reported along with panfish and perch in the
lake. Water in the creek has been low, though a brook trout
stocking was slated for early this month.

Lake Winola (Wyoming County) — Overnight angling for trout has
been productive, especially for those trolling small lures.

Susquehanna River (Wyoming County) — The Pennsylvania Fish
& Boat Commission reports that algae is a big problem for
anglers this year, with lures becoming coated as soon as they hit


Octararo Lake (Lancaster County) — Excellent catfishing is
reported from boat and shore. Bank fishermen are casting green
crawlers, and in the deeper water, anglers are fishing pikie
shiners or green crawlers, though bass anglers are catching them on
spinner baits, too. A 10- pound, 6 ouncer was landed in early July.
Largemouth bass fishing is good on traditional methods, such as
topwaters like Tiny Torpedos and Chug Bugs, until about 8:30 in the
morning, then fish scatter and start to feed on gizzard shad, and
anglers switch to Senko worms. Crappie fishing is good in the
mornings before 9 o’clock in the shallows on 3-inch white or yellow
twister tails, and during the day, in 25 feet or near bottom on

Muddy Creek Reservoir (Lancaster County) — Smallmouth angling
has been good on this impoundment on a Susquehanna River tributary.
Try minnows.

Delaware River (Philadelphia County) — Bluefish are being
landed in the Delaware Bay from the piers on topwater plugs and
chunks of mullet. A lot of little stripers are being caught.

Lake Nockmixon (Bucks County) — A mixed bag of stripers, hybrid
stripers, smallmouth and largemouth bass, catfish and crappies is
reported. The top three summer baits are Carolina- or Texas-rigged
worms, buzzbaits or spinnerbaits and topwater plugs. Jeremy Weaver,
of Richland Town, caught a 12-pound striper and a 12-pound channel
cat over two days. Chicken liver is effective for both species.

Lake Galena (Bucks County) — You have a better chance of
catching walleyes here than at Nockamixon. This lake is a much
smaller and less pressured than Nockamixon, but doesn’t permit
after-dark angling.

Blue Marsh Lake (Berks County) — After-dark striped bass action
has been good in the spillway. Carp, bass and panfish also are
being caught.

Schuylkill River (Berks County) — Bass and panfish are being

Tohickon, Tinnicum and Cooks creeks (Bucks County) — The mouths
of these Delaware River tributaries have been fishing well for
smallmouth bass, and good-size walleye are being taken on jigs and
shiner-tipped jigs.

Lake Nockamixon (Bucks County) — Largemouth bass are reported.
Anglers have been casting flutter spoons where alewife are

Speedwell Forge Lake (Chester County) — Good bass angling on
plastic worms is reported. A good spot is where habitat
improvements have been made on the west side on the lower end.

Schuylkill River (Montgomery County) — A slow bass bite is
reported, with the water below the dams the best bet. Reports of
20-plus pound catfish also are reported.

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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