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Pennsylvania Outdoor News Fishing Report – April 27, 2018

The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission is performing in-season stockings. For a schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com. 

Boaters are reminded that they are required to wear a life jacket when in a boat up to 16 feet long and in all canoes and kayaks through April 30. 

Walleyes are out of season through May 5, and bass regulations mandate catch-and-immediate-release through June 15.

NORTHWEST REGION

Lake Erie tributaries (Erie County) — Poor Richards Bait & Tackle reported April 15 that steelhead were still hitting, making for one of the latest steelhead seasons in recent years. Fish were hitting on minnows under bobbers and egg sacks. On opening day of trout season, air temperatures were in the 30s. Trout were taking grubs, mealworms and waxworms.

Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — Poor Richard’s reported a fantastic perch bite April 15, with limits and jumbos hitting in 25 to 45 feet of water. Boaters were doing better than shore anglers. Hot spots included the water off Liberty Park and the Border Pier. Minnows on crappie rigs were productive. Some anglers were catching bluegills and crappies on minnow-tipped jigs, but the perch bite was so intense, most anglers were targeting perch.

Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — The crappie bite was hit or miss in mid-April, and the walleye bite was improving, especially in the late evening and night-time hours for wading anglers. Some nice walleyes up to 11.5 pounds also were reported off the spillway. Minnow-pattern crankbaits were producing as were 1⁄16-ounce bladebaits. Some perch were reported. 

Conneaut Lake (Crawford County) — Some large bluegills were reported on this large, natural lake in recent weeks. A few crappies were in the channels on the north end.

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — A few small crappies were reported earlier in April. Bluegills were in the stumps and around launch area No. 3.

Lower Two Mile Run (Venango County) — Trout were hitting here on Mentored Youth Day, with fish coming on corn-colored salmon eggs drifted with the current.

Allegheny River (Venango County) — Smallmouth bass up to 19 inches were released on soft plastics, such as tubes and grub patterns, on sunny days through mid-April. Northern pike up to 25 inches also were hitting.

Lake Arthur (Butler County) — Panfish were hitting on minnows suspended over weedbeds in recent weeks. 

SOUTHWEST REGION 

Allegheny River (Allegheny County) — Water levels were dropping as of April 11. Anglers were catching freshwater drum around Deer Creek access area and releasing smallmouth bass on swimbaits. 

North Park Lake (Allegheny County) — This popular lake near Pittsburgh was yielding large numbers of trout on spinnerbaits in mid-April. 

Ohio River — Walleyes, freshwater drum, and hybrid striped bass were hitting on crankbaits and minnow-tipped jigs at the mouths of tributaries in recent weeks. Flathead catfish also were reported.

Whitely Creek, Browns Creek (Greene County) — A large turnout for Mentored Youth Day was reported at these stocked fisheries. 

Canonsburg Lake (Washington County) — The stocked fishery, open to angling year-round, was yielding trout on chartreuse pastebaits and soft plastic worms in recent weeks.

Dutch Fork Lake (Washington County) — The Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only section was producing numbers of trout on a variety of baits in recent weeks.  

Brady’s Run Lake (Beaver County) — Trout were hitting in recent weeks, with the waters near the dam and the windmill productive. Pastebaits and streamers under floats were effective.

Laurel Hill Creek (Somerset County) — Trout were hitting on wooly buggers and Hare’s Ear nymphs in the two Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only sections in recent weeks.

Quemahoning Reservoir (Somerset County) — Bullhead catfish and northern pike were reported in recent weeks.

NORTHCENTRAL REGION

Hamilton Lake, Pine Creek (Tioga County) — Trout were hitting black Roostertails, yellow/red, brown and black Joe’s Flies, silver and silver/blue Kastmasters and other lures in recent weeks on Pine Creek’s DHALO/Keystone Select Trout Waters stretch. Nymphs in Stonefly patterns, and streamers, such as woolly buggers and sculpins, were productive. Keystone waters receive a higher proportion of trout than other stocked waters.

Hills Creek Lake (Tioga County) — Yellow perch were starting to hit in mid-April as warmer weather moved into the area. Fathead minnows and nightcrawlers were productive. Until the season changed to catch-and-immediate-release in mid-April, anglers were catching a few fish on crankbaits, jerkbaits, jigs and soft plastics.  

Allegheny River, Kettle Creek, First Fork Sinnemahoning Creeks (Potter County) — Wild brown trout and native brook trout were hitting on these Class A streams in recent weeks.

Faylor Lake (Snyder County) — Panfish were reported at the spillway in recent weeks.  

Middle Creek (Union County) — Anglers were catching trout on the Keystone Select Trout Waters/DHALO stretch in recent weeks, with nymphs, small streamers and egg patterns productive.

Spring Creek (Centre County) — Brown trout were hitting orange-colored egg patterns in recent weeks. Olive nymphs (18), Bird of Prey Caddis (14-16), black Zebra midges (18-22), Blue-Winged Olives (18-22), and Baetis emergers (18-22) also were productive. A few Grannom caddis were spotted, so Grannom dries (12-14) were effective. Some anglers were fishing olive or black streamers, such as Slumpbusters (6-10) near current breaks and banks.

SOUTHCENTRAL REGION

Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) — Some nice largemouth bass were released on swimbaits and other lures. Smallmouth bass also were reported, with releases coming on tubes and other soft plastics as of April 14.

Little Juniata River (Huntingdon County) —Water was in the 40s and had decent flow as of April 15, according to TCO Fly Shop. Grannoms (12-14) and Blue-Winged Olives (18-22) were hatching, as were Midges (20-26). 

Holman Lake (Perry County) — Trout were hitting on this Little Buffalo State Park lake in recent weeks. 

Lost Creek, East Licking Creek, Tuscarora Creek (Juniata County) — The regional trout opener brought many anglers to these streams. 

Juniata River (Juniata County) — Some nice bass up to 20 inches were released through mid-April, with dark-colored hair jigs and tubes productive.  

Yellow Breeches Creek (Cumberland County) — A large number of anglers turned out for opening day of trout season. Water was clear and in the upper 40s. Hatches included CSI Midges (18-24), Scuds (12-20), Hendricksons (16), and Caddis (14-16).

Letort Spring Run (Cumberland County) — TCO Fly Shop reported clear water around 55 degrees April 14. Cress bugs were producing. Hatches included Sow Bugs (12-22), Midges (22-26), and Blue-Winged Olives (16-18).

NORTHEAST REGION

Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) — Wallenpaupack Sports Shop reported April 15 that largemouth and smallmouth bass were becoming active and releases were being made on live minnows and soft plastics. Black crappies were hitting on 2-inch tubes in recent weeks. Hunters Gallery reported that nice numbers of perch also were hitting.

Mahoning, Lizard creeks (Columbia, Carbon counties) — Heavy angling pressure was reported on the opening day of trout season. Anglers were catching trout on green pastebaits, stickbaits, spinners, crawlers, minnows and other baits. 

Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Bass were released near the dam breast through mid-April.  

SOUTHEAST REGION

Octoraro Reservoir (Chester County) — Crappies were hitting in mid-April. Fathead minnows fished deep under pencil bobbers, and traditional crappie baits were productive.

Tulpehocken Creek (Berks County) —Clear water around 45 degrees was reported April 11 by TCO Fly Shop. Hatches included Blue-Winged Olives (20-24) and Sow Bugs (18-22). 

Delaware River — Brinkman’s Bait & Tackle reported April 14 that striped bass up to 31 inches were being caught near the Tacony Palmyra Bridge. Fish also were hitting near the Commodore Barry Bridge and near Salem. The bite was hit or miss near Station Avenue access. Catfish were hitting at the Linden Avenue ramp.  Shad were starting hit in Lambertville, Easton and other areas. 

Pennypack Creek (Bucks County)  Brinkman’s reported April 14 that some nice trout, including golden rainbows and tiger trout, were being landed. Limits were reported on powerbait and spinners.  

Point Pleasant, New Jersey — Brinkman’s reported April 14 that some nice tog were being caught on the Barb Gail, and cod were hitting for boats heading to deeper waters. 

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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