Boaters are reminded that a life jacket must be worn at all times while in boats less than 16 feet long and in all canoes and kayaks until April 30.
Anglers are advised that because wild trout are spawning in streams like Spring Creek in Centre County they should walk carefully to avoid disturbing nests and redds.
The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission is stocking some lakes in anticipation of ice-fishing season. For a schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com.
Lake Erie and steelhead tributaries — Twenty Mile, Twelve Mile and Four Mile creeks on the east side, and Elk and Walnut on west side were fishing well as conditions allowed, but storms wreaked havoc with conditions in mid-November. In high, discolored water, anglers were using skein and crawlers, and in low, clear water, single eggs and minnows.
Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — Nice-size perch up to 10 and 11 inches were reported in recent weeks, with the Waterworks Dock, Border Dock, South Pier, and Marina Lake productive. The occasional steelhead was reported, and a few walleyes were hitting off the North and South piers.
Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — Falling water temperatures in late November triggered a walleye bite, and anglers were catching nice fish on blades around dusk, as conditions allowed. Some perch, bluegills and few nice crappies were hitting off the Jamestown docks. Numbers of bluegills, perch and bass were reported on bobbers and jigs cast from shore. Crappies were moving deeper in mid-November and were hitting soft plastic shad patterns, drop-shotted. The Shenango River below the Pymatuning Dam was yielding walleyes and muskies.
Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — Largemouth bass, including a 4-pound, 2-ouncer taken on a jig, were reported in mid-November on this large, natural lake.
Shenango Lake (Mercer County)| — Numbers of perch were reported by anglers jigging for walleyes Nov. 20, although sizes were generally running small. Abundant baitfish in the lake made for difficult walleye fishing in recent weeks. White bass and small hybrid striped bass were reported. Nice-size crappies were hitting, as were channel catfish.
Allegheny River (Venango County) — As conditions allowed, anglers were catching bass and walleyes on plugs, hair jigs, tubes, swimbaits, and other lures in mid-November. Bass were running up to 16 and 17 inches and were in their wintering holes. One smallmouth was 3.5 pounds. A couple of northern pike were released on a swimbait.
Yellow Creek Lake (Indiana County) — Anglers were catching northern pike on shiners at the sailboat launch amid light fishing pressure in late November. Catfish were hitting at the north shore launch in the evening hours.
Keystone Power Dam (Armstrong County) — Crappies were hitting on assorted live baits in late November.
Indian Lake (Westmoreland County) — Anglers were catching nice numbers of fall-stocked trout on salmon eggs through late November.
Twin Lakes (Westmoreland County) — Trout were reported on spinners and nymphs in late November. Crappies up to 17 inches were hitting in the lower lake.
Loyalhanna River (Westmoreland County) — The delayed-harvest, artificial-lures-only section was yielding trout on various artificials through late November.
Monongahela River — Walleyes and saugers were reported on jigs and jerkbaits near Charleroi Lock and below the Maxwell and Point Marion locks in recent weeks.
Youghiogheny River (Fayette County) — Trout were reported at Ohiopyle in recent weeks.
Dunlap Creek Lake (Fayette County) — Trout were hitting in this small impoundment in recent weeks. Try bait on the bottom.
Quemahoning Reservoir (Somerset County) — Smallmouth bass up to 3.5 pounds were reported in recent weeks, with minnows productive.
Laurel Hill Lake/Laurel Hill Creek (Somerset County) — Trout were reported in recent weeks both in this state park lake and in the Keystone Select Trout Waters section of the stream.
Northmoreland Lake (Westmore-land County) — Numbers of nice-size brow and rainbow trout were reported on spoons, spinners, and other artificials in recent weeks.
Susquehanna River — Walleyes were reported around Sunbury and south of Sunbury in recent weeks.
Fishing Creek (Clinton County) — Trout were hitting small streamers (6-10) in olive and white in late November, when water was in the mid to upper 30s and at a nice level. Trout were hitting nymphs, such as Prince Nymphs (12-18), Black Stoneflies (6-10), and Gold-bead Pheasant Tails.
Spring Creek (Centre County) — Nymphs such as Green Weenies, Olive Scuds and egg patterns were taking trout throughout the day in late November when water was in the 50s, and a good level and color.
Hamilton Lake (Tioga County) — Trout were taking spinners, waxworms, mealworms and minnows in recent weeks.
Tioga and Cowanesque spillways (Tioga County) — Walleyes, smallmouth bass, and panfish were hitting in recent weeks.
Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) — Striped bass up to 16 pounds 14 ounces were hitting through late November. A 6-pound, 7-ounce smallmouth bass also was reported along with a 1-pound, 13-ounce white perch. All were taken on shad.
Little Juniata River (Huntingdon County) — Good conditions were reported in late November, when water was in the 50s with a little color, but slightly high. Blue-winged olives (18-20) occasionally were on the surface but nymphs, such as Green Weenies (12-14) and streamers were consistently effective. Hatches included midges (20-24),
Juniata River (Juniata County) — Smallmouth bass were hitting 3- to 4-inch tube jigs and plastic worms in recent weeks.
Juniata River (Perry County) — Nice-size smallmouth bass were reported on tube jigs and twisters in recent weeks.
Mauch Chunk, Pohopoco, Aquashicola creeks (Carbon County) — Trout were hitting in recent weeks on these streams.
Mauch Chunk Lake (Carbon County) — Nice-size panfish, perch and crappies were reported in recent weeks, with boaters doing well near the swimming area of the lake. Micro jigs tipped fathead minnows or wax worms were effective. Pickerel and bass also were hitting, although most bass were under the 15-inch creel minimum on this Big Bass Program water.
Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Bass were hitting near the powerline and Wild Creek bay areas, and in the upper reaches of Pohopoco Creek through late November. Striped bass were hitting chicken livers and live bait near the Preachers Camp access area.
Lehigh River — Fly-anglers at Glen Onoko were catching nice trout in recent weeks.
Lake Wallenpaupack, Shohola Lake (Pike County) — Smallmouth bass up to 2 pounds 15 inches, were reported with some hitting crankbaits near-shore through late November. Walleyes up to 25 inches also were reported, as were bluegills, perch, and pickerel in recent weeks.
Lackawaxen River — Numbers of trout were reported in recent weeks when water was in the 40s.
Blue Marsh Lake (Berks County) — Largemouth bass were reported on wacky worms and other lures in recent weeks. A 44-inch flathead catfish was reportedly released on a minnow.
Monacacy, Bushkill creeks, Delaware, Lehigh rivers (Northampton County) —Anglers were targeting brown trout with various lures, including plugs and rubber worms, in recent weeks.
Lake Luxembourg (Bucks County) — This Core Creek Park impoundment was yielding largemouth bass on crankbaits and minnows through mid-November. White perch also were reported.
Lake Nockamixon (Bucks County) — Largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and crappies were reported, with the bass taking suspended crankbaits and crappies hitting small tubes.
Delaware River — Smallmouth bass were hitting minnows, drifted, and grubs in the riffles around the New Hope Bridge area in mid-November. Walleyes also were reported.
Marsh Creek Lake (Chester County) — Smallmouth bass, chain pickerel, and yellow perch were reported on minnows through late November.
Pennypack Creek (Philadelphia County) — Rainbow trout were hitting on paste baits and minnows above the boulevard through mid-November. Panfish also were reported.
Schuylkill River — Carp were reported on boilies and other typical carp baits through mid-November. Catfish were hitting shrimp, chicken livers and crawlers.
— Compiled by Deborah Weisberg