Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report – August 2nd, 2013
Lake Erie (Erie County) — As of July 21, walleyes were in the First Trench in 65 to 75 feet between Walnut and Elk creeks and hitting crawler harnesses or minnow plugs. A few steelheads were reported by anglers trolling plugs for walleyes. Perch were scattered all along the lake west of the Peninsula and hitting from 50 to 55 feet. It was getting to be the time of year when emerald shiners are hard to come by. Although the bait of choice, some perch anglers reported doing well on fathead minnows.
Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — Anglers fishing mornings and evenings to avoid the heat of the day were catching panfish and bass. A few smallmouth bass were reported off the North Pier, and largemouth bass off the East and West piers. In the main lake, perch were hitting in 37 to 54 feet, and walleyes in around 70 feet. Extremely heavy weed growth in the bay makes fishing difficult in summer. The docks were yielding nice perch, sunfish, catfish and rock bass, on minnows, crappie rigs, crayfish and other baits from early morning to noon. A couple of brown trout were in the streams and hitting crawlers.
Lake Pleasant (Erie County) — This 25-acre natural lake was yielding panfish and some trout on the edges of weedbeds.
French Creek (Crawford, Venango, Mercer, Erie counties) — Heavy rainfall made for high flow with color by mid-July. Largemouth bass were hitting on crankbaits in the upper reaches.
Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — Up until the mid-July heat wave hit, anglers were still catching shallow walleyes in the weeds on jigs and crawlers. Crawler harnesses also were productive. Numbers of crappies were hitting in deeper brush in 12 to 18 feet, mostly on minnows. One angler targeting long tapering points that dropped 7 to 13 feet caught crappies up to 14 inches, a walleye, and some perch and bluegills. The causeway was a hot spot. Kayakers reported bluegills and crappies near the bottom in 16 to 20 feet. Big numbers of channel catfish were reported.
Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — This 935-acre natural lake was yielding big bluegills through July 15. A longnose gar also was reported on light tackle.
Canadohta Lake (Crawford County) — This smaller glacial lake was yielding numbers of northern pike up to 30 inches on golden shiners just before sunset, with openings along weed edges productive at least until mid-July. Before the heat wave, some anglers were catching walleyes by trolling crawler harnesses or leeches on floating jigs just outside the weeds.
Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — Largemouth bass up to 6 pounds were reported on spinnerbaits, buzzbaits and swimming jigs, with the areas around weeds productive. One angler caught a 5-pound largemouth on an umbrella rig. Crappies were hitting on Stingers. A number of crappies in mixed sizes were reported off stumps and brush in 10 feet, but most were small. An angler targeting walleyes on a cloudy day in June didn’t get a bite.
Shenango Reservoir (Mercer County) — Small crappies and bluegills were reported through mid-July. Four bass totaling 161⁄3 pounds, including a nearly 5½-pound lunker, won a recent tournament. They were caught on jigs with trailers in both shallow and deep water.
Stoneboro Lake (Mercer County) — Some small bass were reported on topwater and drop-shot rigs in recent weeks.
Allegheny River (Venango County) — An overall slow smallmouth bite was reported through mid-July, with some fish up to 19 inches caught on swimbaits in 4 to 6 feet of fast-moving current above and below main pools. In low water levels, before mid-July rainfall, one angler landed six bass on chartreuse-color spinnerbaits.
Oil Creek (Venango County) — Although the trout bite is done until fall, smallmouth bass were hitting on Triple Threat Streamers and Wooly Buggers, with the stretch from Miller Station Bridge to the mouth of the creek at Oil City productive.
Lake Justus (Venango County) — A 30-inch muskie was reported on a spinnerbait. After-dark anglers caught trout on split-tail jigs and split shot in 38 feet.