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

Breaking News for

Sportsmen Since 1967

Abrupt cold snap reduces bite, fishing pressure

The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission continues to stock
trout throughout the state.

For a statewide stocking schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com.


Lake Erie and tributaries – Fair steelhead fishing was reported
in low clear water in the tributaries Oct. 9. Fish in the lower
sections had scattered as far as I-90, and no new ones had come in.
The lakefront was unfishable, as 10-foot waves left water muddy.
Poor Richard’s Bait and Tackle advised anglers Oct. 9 that it still
is very early in the season and just one or two steelhead runs have
occurred. Miserable weather, including strong winds, also shut down
the perch and walleye fishing in the lake.

Allegheny River/Allegheny Reser-voir (Warren County) – Fishing
was hit or miss in the rainy, cold weather of early October.
Walleyes were reported in the reservoir and from the tailrace to
Tidioute. The Conewango River was yielding smallmouth bass. Kirk
Schwab, of Harmony, won the recent two-day Tidioute Fishing
Tournament with four walleyes and six bass weighing close to 26
pounds. Joe Martinelli, of Mount Washington, caught a near-22-pound
muskie on day one of the multi-species tournament. In all, 20
northern pike, two muskies, 70 walleyes, 222 bass, 35 trout, and
one catfish were weighed. The lunkers were a 33/4-pound walleye,
31/4-pound bass, near 2-pound trout, and 103/4-pound northern

Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) – Nice walleyes were
hitting in 12 to 14 feet, with one angler catching two 25-inchers.
Crappies, including some slabs, were starting to move shallower,
although some were still hitting in the deeper water; structure was
key. Greg Zawatski caught a 48-inch muskie while bass fishing Sept.

Woodcock Creek (Crawford County) – The creek was stocked with
trout Oct. 1. A few walleyes were reported below the dam.

Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) – Rick Krivda, Sr. and sons,
Rick and Mike, caught northern pike, 18 to 26 inches, a muskie, and
largemouth and smallmouth bass, including Rick, Sr.’s 21/3-pound
smallie, Sept. 19 through 26.

Shenango Lake (Mercer County) – Hybrid striped bass and white
bass were hitting along the shoreline, and crappies from boat and
shore in recent weeks. The water below the dam was stocked

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) – Crappies, bluegills and
largemouth bass were reported Oct. 9, and angling activity was
picking up, with half a dozen fishermen spotted in boats and on
shore. The shallow water under the main causeway was productive.
Water in “the stumps” had been lowered for a recent dam inspection,
but was starting to fill up in recent weeks.

Lake Arthur (Butler County) – Bass, mostly largemouths, and
crappies were reported around the 528 Bridge and the Muddy Creek
arm, as well as a few walleyes and hybrid striped bass off Gravel
Pit island and Crescent Bay boat rental, in early October. Numbers
of channel catfish were hitting all over the lake. Small bluegills
also were plentiful. Fishing was entering a fall pattern, with
water temperatures dropping into the low 50s.

Neshannock Creek (Lawrence County) – Rain in the forecast could
turn low, clear flow high and muddy. Anglers were landing trout
from recent stockings by the Fish Commission and Neshannock Creek
Fly Shop. Sporadic Caddisflies, midges and Blue-Winged Olives were
reported on top. Slate Drakes are just about done. Nymph and
streamer fishing was the best bet. Although smallmouths are on the
fall feed, the bass and pike bites have slowed some.


Allegheny River – Numbers of average-sized saugers and walleyes
were reported from shore and boat in early October.

Monongahela River – Good conditions and average catches were
reported in early October.

Ohio River – Walleyes, saugers and catfish were reported in
recent weeks, and anglers were fishing Montour Run for trout
stocked Oct. 1. Daniel Mead, of Baldwin, caught a 30-pound,
461/2-inch flathead catfish near the West End Bridge Sept. 1. Tori
Bregon caught a 431/2-inch, 30-plus pound flathead on a night
crawler and 8-pound test at 1:15 a.m. in the back channel on Sept.

Crooked Creek (Armstrong County) – Anglers were catching
crappies in recent weeks.


Pine, Little Pine – The weather was good Oct. 11 and recently
stocked trout were taking Slate Drake dries on the surface; anglers
were also doing well stripping woolly buggers through the riffles.
Leaves were in full fall color but expected to fall within a couple
of weeks, impeding angling.

Slate, Cedar runs (Tioga County) – Normal fall flow was reported
Oct. 11. Some Slate Drake and midge activity was reported, but
conditions were typical for fall.

Spring Creek (Centre County) – Average fall conditions were
reported with tan and green Caddisflies, midges, Tricos and
Craneflies hatching Oct. 9. Top-water action was just fair.
Nymphing with small flies (sizes 18 to 22) was typically more

North Fork Redbank, Clear creeks (Jefferson County) – Recent
stockings made for nice catches of trout in recent weeks, with
light woolly buggers and streamers a good bet in the project
waters. Bait anglers were doing well on chunks of crawler and meal
works with light tackle on Clear Creek.

Kettle, First Fork Sinnemahoning creeks, Allegheny River, Lyman
Lake (Potter County) – Stockings were performed in recent weeks.
Light angling pressure also was reported.

Penns Creek (Union County) – Decent fall flow was reported Oct.
9, with a few Tan Caddis (16, 18), October Caddis (10), Slate
Drakes (12, 14), Blue-Winged Olives (22-26) and Tan Craneflies
hatching, along with flying ants (14-24).

Fishing Creek (Clinton County) – Decent flow for fall was
reported Oct. 10. Tiny Blue-Winged Olives were on the water. Tan
Caddis, Slate Drakes, Tricos, though spotty, and Summer Blue Quills
also were hatching. Fly Ants (14-24) also were effective dry


Little Juniata River (Blair County) – Low, clear flow was
reported recently. Nymphing the deeper pools and runs with a small
mayfly or caddis pattern under a Hi-Vis Dry or favorite indictor
was suggested.

Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) – Anglers were catching lake
trout, 2 to 12 pounds, trolling 21/4-inch flutter spoons with
downriggers in 30 to 40 feet. Striped bass, 8 to 20 pounds, were
hitting live alewife, shad, shiners, and trout in the upper 20 feet
of water.

Yellow Breeches Creek (Cumberland County) -_Trout anglers
reported good fishing on orange soft hackles and rusty spinners,
slightly weighted and fished with a strike indicator, in early
October, with the best action coming in early afternoon and
late-day action slow.


Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) – The bass bite on this deep
lake can be inconsistent, but fall is typically a good time to
catch smallmouth bass. As of Oct. 10, few exceptional reports had
come in. Panfishing also remained average, although fall typically
triggers nice catches of perch. A few hybrid striped bass were

Mauch Chunk Lake (Carbon County) – Largemouth bass and pickerel
were on the fall feed. Numbers more than sizes were reported in
recent weeks, although fall is probably the best time to catch
trophy-sized fish.

Lehigh River, Pohopco, Broadhead, McMichael creeks (Lehigh
County) – Numbers of trout were reported in recent weeks on the
river and area streams, which also were slated for stocking. The
water from Slatington to Treichlers was yielding trout as weather
cooled in recent weeks. Smallmouth bass fishing was average,
especially on artificials.


Nockamixon Lake (Bucks County) – A good crappie bite was
reported, with sunken trees in 25 feet yielding the best catches
Oct. 11. Largemouth bass were hitting shallow.

West Branch Perkiomen Creek (Bucks County) – Trout were stocked
in early October but leaves were beginning to impede angling

French, Pickering, East Brandywine and West Valley creeks (Bucks
County) – Low, clear conditions were reported along with recent
stockings as of Oct 9. Fly-anglers were fishing terrestrial
hoppers, ants, and beetles.

Delaware River – Smallmouth bass were hitting on shiners in
recent weeks. Striped bass were reported between the Betsy Ross and
Tacony Palmyra bridges.

Marsh Creek Lake (Chester County) – The bass and panfish bites
improved in falling temperatures, with late morning and evening
productive. Perch, bluegills and crappies were taking minnows and
jigs, mealworms, waxworms and crawlers. Bass were hitting minnows,
crankbaits and plastic worms in black, purple, dark green or
pumpkinseed. This is a Big Bass Program lake, with a 15-inch size

Valley Creek (Chester County) – Nice flow with slight off-color
were reported in recent weeks, and cooler nights were spurring the
early morning feed on flies such as CDC Caddis dry and terrestrials
on the surface. Small Pheasant Tails and scuds were productive
nymphs; midges, when present, were also effective.

Octoraro Lake (Lancaster County) – Crappies finally started
biting, suspended in 12 to 14 feet, on medium fatheads and 1/32 or
1/64 ounce ballhead jigs and trout magnets or twister tails in
white and yellow. Catfishing was excellent on chicken livers, green
crawlers, and other typical baits. More than 100 contestants fished
the recent catfish contest and caught 53 catfish. The winning
combined weight was 26 pounds, 1 ounce. The lunker was 9 pounds, 2
ounces and was over 28 inches long. Bass were hitting on stickbaits
suspended off points and laydown logs. White perch action was
picking up with decent sizes and number reported, particularly on
crawlers. Anglers were catching walleyes by the covered bridge on
crawlers and small crankbaits.

Scott’s Run, Kaercher Creek lakes, Hay, Tulpehocken creeks
(Berks County) – Trout stockings were performed on all four in
early October. Water was very low on Tulpehocken Oct. 9, and fish
were rising to selective flies. Caddisflies, midges and tricos were
hatching. CDC Caddis adults in all colors, Trico spinners, emergers
and sunken spinners (all in 22-26) were productive. Tulpehocken
anglers are reminded that the area below Blue Marsh Stilling Basin
to Red Covered Bridge is delayed-harvest, artificial-

Schuylkill River – The Black Rock area was yielding catfish in
recent weeks, with flatheads coming on large shiners or bluegills
and channel cats taking chicken livers. Anglers were doing well in
past weeks targeting smallmouth bass with crankbaits and live baits
near Cromby Power Plant. Anglers were reminded to avoid the fish
ladder at Black Rock Dam.

Chester, Ridley creeks (Delaware County) – Trout stockings were
slated for Oct. 14.

Lake Minsi (Northampton County) – The crappie bite was turning
on in recent weeks, with anglers using minnows and slip bobbers
fished around weed beds in the lake’s deeper water. Minsi was
slated for a trout-stocking Oct. 15.

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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