Wednesday, February 8th, 2023
Wednesday, February 8th, 2023

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Sportsmen Since 1967

Warm winter brings unexpectedly good trout fishing


Erie — Rain and mild weather early this month broke the deadlock
on Erie tributaries. Some fresh-run steelhead were being landed
although most were small, 2-year- old “jacks,” and mostly in the
lower reaches of the streams. Upper Elk Creek was fishing well
clear to the Streuschen’s flats and McKean Park. During calm
conditions, lakeshore fishing at Trout Run and the mouth of Walnut
Creek has been productive. The Fish & Boat Commission recently
released several hundred spawned-out steelhead in the Walnut Creek

Allegheny Reservoir/Allegheny River (Warren County) —
Legal-sized walleyes, perch and northern pike are being picked up
in the lake. Dick Long, of Warren, landed some nice trout, and
walleyes up to 17 inches at the Big Bend access area on the Route
59 side of the river below the dam.

Chapman Dam (Warren County) — Ice angling for recently stocked
trout was reported on the western side during Winter Fest late last
month, though the surface has since thawed. Anglers also were
fishing off the docks.

Allegheny River (Forest County) — The “sand and gravel pool”
around Tionesta is producing walleyes, pike and muskies to shore
and boat anglers fishing big shiners, especially in the early
morning and just after dark.

East Hickory Creek (Forest County) — When conditions allow, the
project waters can fish well on Woolly Buggers, nymphs, and
streamers presented deep and slow.

Tionesta Lake (Forest County) — The lake is known for its
muskies, while the outflow also yields muskies, walleyes and
stocked trout. The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission began
stocking this water just a few years ago, and suggests targeting
the water just below the dam. For muskies and walleyes, key in on
the outflow along the wall and just upstream of the beach area.

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — Crappies, bluegills, and perch
are coming in deeper water, 17 to 20 feet, by the dam and over the
old roadbed by “the three posts.” The Sheakleyville Bridge area is
yielding bluegills and beginning to produce perch.

French Creek (Crawford County) — Nice-sized walleye catches are
reported around Meadville and Cambridge Springs. This Allegheny
River tributary is known for its diversity of fish, and can yield
huge walleyes fall through winter.

Lake Arthur (Butler County) — The crappie bite has been fairly
steady in 8 to 10 feet around brush, and, from shore, around the
rental cabin and the Mount Zion Baptist Church. Anglers also report
catching the occasional largemouth bass around the 528 boat launch,
and walleyes, drifting in the north shore area. Don Taylor, of
Fombell, released two muskies, 40 inches and 36 inches, on a
Mentzer Vamp, in the Muddy Creek arm of the lake.

Harbor Acres Lake (Butler County) — Good stocked trout fishing


Glendale Lake (Cambria County) — Anglers broke the ice at the
Beaver Valley Marina and caught perch, 6 to 8 inches, on small
minnows last weekend. Skim ice has been on and off the lake all
week depending on wind and other conditions.

Allegheny River — Good fishing continues at the Highland Park
Dam. John Morkos, of Shaler, landed a 5-pound walleye and some
small sauger jigging there early this month.

Monongahela River — Paul Horwat, of Fairchance, boated a 10-
pound, 3-ounce, 28-inch walleye and several smaller walleyes on a
blade bait at Maxwell lock near Brownsville.

Ohio River — Angling is picking up at Emsworth and Dashields
dams, with a few legal-sized walleyes and sauger reported.

Raccoon Lake (Beaver County) — Good stocked trout fishing

Youghiogheny Reservoir (Fayette and Westmoreland counties) —
George Tressel, of Markleysburg, boated a 26-inch walleye trolling
a Smithwick plug early this month.

Youghiogheny River — A stocking was slated for early this month
at the outflow of the dam near Confluence.


Susquehanna River (Snyder, Union counties) — The Fish & Boat
Commission reports catches of muskies at its Hoover Island access
area, south of Selinsgrove on Route 15.

Hamilton Lake (Tioga County) — Trout and bluegills are coming on
jigs tipped with mealworms and other live bait.

Hills Creek Lake (Tioga County) — A 191/2-inch largemouth bass
and a 20-inch pickerel were taken on minnows late last month in
this Hills Creek State Park impoundment. Catches of large bluegills
are reported on mealworm-tipped jigs and ice flies. An angler on
Hills Creek Lake recently caught a 191/2-inch largemouth bass and a
20-inch bass.

Tioga Lake (Tioga County) — A 20-inch channel catfish and a
hybrid striped bass were caught on minnows in the spillway late
last month.

Pine Creek, Little Pine, Slate Run, Cedar Run (Lycoming, Tioga,
Potter counties) — The delayed-harvest water on Little Pine Creek
is yielding some trout to anglers willing to work at it.
Fluctuating temperatures have made fishing difficult, although
water levels have been good. The larger streams also report little
pressure and only fair catches.

Little Pine Lake (Lycoming County) — An extra 1,000 trout were
stocked in mid-January to supplement those in December and upcoming
this month, though catch rates have remained low.

Spring Creek, Fishing Creek (Centre County) — Good angling is
reported on these limestoners, with Glen McConnell of McConnell’s
Country Store catching rainbows and browns from 8 inches to 14
inches, on Cressbugs and Pheasant Tail nymphs above and below
Benner Springs.

Curwensville Reservoir (Clearfield County) — Good fishing
continues with large crappies being taken in the main lake, and
walleyes up to 24 inches being taken in backwater and the main
lake. This lake also puts out big perch and muskies.


Canoe Creek Lake (Blair County) — An extra helping of 2,500
trout were slated for stocking in mid-January by the Fish &
Boat Commission’s Tylersville hatchery. Another 2,500 are set to be
planted Feb. 14. The lake also received 1,500 rainbows in December.
This lake in Canoe Creek State Park is an “extended season” lake
that can be fished through March.

Little Juniata River (Blair County) — Trout anglers are reminded
that the delayed-harvest section in Bellwood became catch-
and-release-only last month.

Opposum Lake (Cumberland County) — While this tiny impoundment
is being drawn down for repairs, seasons, size and creel limits are

Yellow Breeches (Cumberland County) — Water was high and off
color early this month and the run, which is the spring creek
between Children’s Lake in Boiling Springs and the main stream, was
clear. Hatches include early black stoneflies in the early
afternoon, especially on mild sunny days. Midges of various colors
hatch year around. Caddis larvae (mostly green) abound. Sculpins
also are abundant.

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Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Nice catches of pickerel and
hybrid striped bass were reported before ice went out around the
popular Preachers Camp boat access area. One ‘wiper’ landed on a
fathead minnow measured 30 inches. Boaters have reported catching
perch in deeper water. The Fish & Boat Commission cautions
boaters to be careful around floating debris. A boating safety
course will be held at Beltzville State Park March 6 and 8. For
more, call (610) 377-0045.

Fishing Creek (Columbia County) — Good trout fishing is
reported. Try Wooly Buggers.

Briar Creek Lake (Columbia County) — An additional stocking of
trout has enhanced angling action.

Susquehanna River (Columbia County) — Nice catches of walleyes
are reported. Try minnows.

Lackawanna Lake (Lackawanna County) — An extra stocking of trout
from the Tylersville Fish Hatchery was performed early this

Lake Jean (Luzerne County) — This Ricketts Glen State Park
impoundment has been producing nice pickerel and perch on

Lily Lake, Lake Irena (Luzerne County) — Additional trout
stockings have made for good angling opportunities and higher
temperatures have keep water open much of this winter.

Susquehanna River (Luzerne County) — Higher temperatures and
ice-free water have made for better than usual walleye fishing.

Brodhead Creek, McMichaels Creek (Monroe County) — Trout anglers
report nice catches on spinners. Water levels have been up much of
this winter.

Tobyhanna Lake, Hidden Lake (Monroe County) — Nice catches of
brook trout were reported after last month’s stocking. Anglers at
Hidden Lake were targeting the open water near the dam area with
mealworms and power bait. Shore fishing should open up soon.

Susquehanna River (Sullivan County) — A few catches of panfish
on jigs are reported.

Delaware River (Wayne County) — A nice walleye bite is reported,
given milder than normal water temperatures.


Susquehanna River (Dauphin County) — Boaters are reminded to
proceed cautiously near Highspire, because of turnpike bridge

Susquehanna River (York County) — Good walleye action is
reported on twister tails and jerk baits. Smallmouth bass, striped
bass and channel catfish also are hitting, with shrimp nabbing the
catfish and stripers.

South Branch of Muddy Creek (York County) — Fly-anglers report
nice catches on nymphs, Green Weenies and Woolly Buggers.

Scott’s Run Lake (Berks County) — This 22-acre French Creek
State Park impoundment has been yielding nice catches of stocked
trout. The park’s other lake, Hopewell, is 68 acres and features
warmer water species, including walleyes, bass, and various
panfish. It is a Big Bass Program water.

Blue Marsh Lake (Berks County) — Good crappie action is
reported. The Stilling Basin also is a good bet for walleyes.

Lake Marburg (York County) — Nice catches of bluegills are
reported on waxworms and meal worms at this Codorus State Park
lake, especially around the first and second bridges. Trout fishing
also has picked up with the recent stocking of trout.

Pinchot Lake (York County) — Slab crappies are hitting on
minnows at the breast of the dam in this 340-acre Gifford Pinchot
State Park impoundment.

Nockamixon Lake (Bucks County) — Rains early this month made the
spillway full of water. While it can be a treacherous place to
fish, good water levels could yield catches of walleyes, chain
pickerel and smallmouth bass, plus any of the lake’s other species.
Even when dropping temperatures cause skim ice elsewhere, the
spillway remains open. Good chain pickerel action is reported in
the open water of the coves.

Lake Towhee (Bucks County) — If cold persists, ice fishing could
come back at this impoundment, with nice yields of crappies,
pickerel and bass.

Lake Galena (Bucks County) — The spillway scenario here is
similar to Nockamixon. Anglers stand to get pickerel and walleyes,
however caution should be exercised given the potential for
dangerous spillway conditions.

Delaware River — Walleyes have been migrating to the mouths of
the rivers’ many tributaries, providing good pre-spawn angling
action. Anglers also can target the warm-water discharge at Trenton
on the New Jersey side of the river. It remains a good go-to spot
for walleyes and other species.

Marsh Creek Lake (Chester County) — Perch up to 2 pounds have
been boated on shiners, along with bass.

East Brandywine Creek, West Valley, Pickering, French Creek
(Chester County) — Fly-anglers have had success with Hare’s Ear,
Pheasant Tail and other small nymphs (sizes 14 to 20) on trout. One
angler landed a 24-inch brown on East Brandywine. Water levels have
been fishable this winter. East Brandywine and West Valley’s
delayed-harvest waters are slated for a March 1 stocking.

Schuylkill River (Montgomery County) — Light fishing pressure is
reported, with anglers targeting catfish below the Black Rock Dam.
Boat activity is reported around Black Rock launch in Phoenixville.
The Fish & Boat Commission reminds anglers that there is an
exclusion area in front of and below Black Rock Dam.

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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