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Pennsylvania Outdoor News Fishing Report – May 11, 2018

Anglers are reminded that walleye season opened May 5, while catch-and-immediate-release of bass is in effect through June 15. 

The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission continued to perform in-season trout stockings in recent weeks. For a schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com. 

Lake Erie, Presque Isle Bay, tributaries (Erie County) — Perch were hitting in the deeper waters of the bay in late April, but crappies weren’t very active. Steelhead were in the bay and some fresh steelhead came into the tribs during a rainfall. Suckers were in the tribs, and a few smallmouth bass were moving in. 

Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — A sporadic crappie bite was reported on the north end in recent weeks. Walleyes up to 29 inches were hitting for night-time anglers, including those targeting rocky shoals. Bladebaits and chartreuse Rapalas were productive. A few daytime catches were reported on jigs and minnows. A 39.5-inch muskie was released. Perch were hitting in the outflow of the dam. Just three bass totaling 5.96 pounds were weighed in a bass tournament in mid-April, when water was unseasonably cold.

Woodcock Creek and Dam (Crawford County) — Trout were reported on crawlers, minnows and spinners in recent weeks.  

Canadohta Lake (Crawford County) — Crappies were hitting at this natural lake in recent weeks. 

Edinboro Lake (Crawford County) — Crappies were hitting in recent weeks. 

Lake Wilhelm (Mercer County) — As of April 23, fishing pressure was light, and shore anglers were catching bluegills at launch 3.

Shenango River Reservoir (Mercer County) — White bass and hybrid striped bass were biting in the usual spring spots. Many fish were in transition from deep to shallow water around April 21 when water was 52 degrees. Northern pike were reported along shoreline areas and taking shallow-running crankbaits. Largemouth bass were beginning to appear in the shallows.  

Sugar Creek (Venango County) — Anglers released numbers of rainbow trout and a few brown trout up to 22 inches in late April. Anglers did well with spinners, corn-colored salmon eggs, crawlers, and fathead minnows.

Allegheny River (Venango County) — Success was mixed on releases of smallmouth bass in recent weeks with some anglers releasing fish up to 20 inches on tubes and crankbaits. Northern pike and small muskies also were reported. 


Ohio River — Smallmouth bass and freshwater drum were released on soft-plastic swimbaits and hard-bodied minnow imitations in recent weeks.

Montour Run, Flaugherty Run, Big Sewickley Creek (Allegheny County) — Anglers were catching trout on pastebaits and live minnows on these Ohio River tributaries.   

Beaver River (Beaver County) — Smallmouth bass and a few muskies were released below the New Brighton Dam. Walleyes also were hitting before the season closed. 

Raccoon Lake, Traverse Creek (Beaver County) — Opening day of trout season started out slow, but picked up in the late morning hours when some of the larger fish were caught.

Plum Creek (Armstrong County)  Nice catches of trout were reported following opening day.  

Monongahela River (Washington County) — Releases of smallmouth bass were reported in recent weeks. Walleyes were reported before the close of the season.

Enlow Fork, Templeton Run (Greene, Washington counties) — Water was a little high with good clarity as trout season opened, and anglers were catching numbers of nice fish on live minnows.

Tenmile Creek (Washington County) — Rainbow trout were reported on small metal spinners near the Farabee Farm as trout season opened. 

Yellow Creek (Indiana County) — Anglers were catching trout on live bait, spinners, spoons and wet flies in recent weeks, with the upper reaches especially productive.

Blue Spruce Lake (aka Cummings Reservoir) (Indiana County) — Anglers were catching some nice rainbow trout in the days following opening day.

Quemahoning Reservoir (Somerset County) — Northern Pike were hitting live minnows in recent weeks. 

Youghiogheny River Reservoir (Somerset County) — Yellow perch were hitting in recent weeks. 


Pine Creek (Tioga County) — Trout were hitting live minnows, butterworms and waxworms as well as spinners in recent weeks. Small, black/brown stoneflies were hatching in the upper reaches, but subsurface presentations like olive or black streamers were the best bet. 

Hamilton Lake (Tioga County) — Trout were reported on live minnows, paste baits, butterworms, and waxworms. Fly-anglers were catching trout on small streamers and wet flies near the dam area. Sunfish and yellow perch were reported on minnows and redworms or nightcrawlers.

Hammond/Tioga lakes (Tioga County) — A few yellow perch and crappies were reported in recent weeks when water was still in the 40s.  

Hills Creek Lake (Tioga County) — Bluegills and yellow perch were hitting live minnows, nightcrawlers and redworms in recent weeks.  

Lyman Run Lake (Potter County) — Bluegills were biting on live minnows, butterworms, wax worms, and mealworms fished under  floats.  Boat anglers trolling small spinners and spoons in silver, gold, or silver/green were making nice catches of trout, as were fly anglers using dry flies, wet flies, and nymphs.

Foster Joseph Sayers Lake spillway (Centre County) — Crappies, yellow perch, and bluegills were biting on butterworms, red worms, yellow twister tails and beadhead nymphs in recent weeks.

Bald Eagle Creek (Centre County) — Trout were hitting nymphs, streamers and artificial lures as well as live minnows, crawlers, and butterworms in recent weeks.  

Spring Creek (Centre County)  Blue-Winged Olives (18-22), Midges (22-26), and Crane flies were hatching in late April. Grannom Caddis (12-14) were hatching below Big Spring in Bellefonte. A few Grannoms were also spotted at Fisherman’s Paradise. Trout were hitting olive nymphs (18), Baetis emergers (18-22), Walt’s Worms (12-16), and Olive Scuds (14-18). Suckers were spawning, which made yellow or cream sucker spawn (12-16) effective.

Fishing Creek (Clinton County) — Most trout were hitting on subsurface flies, such as Frenchies (14-18), Prince nymphs (10-14), Hare’s Ears (12-16), and black/brown Stonefly nymphs (8-12) in recent weeks. Streamers (6-10) in olive or black were productive. Topwater action came on Blue-Winged Olives (18-22), Midges (22-26), Grannom Caddis (12-14), Blue Quills (16-18), and Tan Caddis (12-16).

West Branch Susquehanna River (Clinton County) — Smallmouth bass were released in recent weeks on streamers and artificial lures. 

Susquehanna River Basin (Clinton County) — Fallfish were taking streamers and lures in recent weeks. 


Yellow Breeches Creek (Cumberland County) — Water was clear and in the upper 40s on April 29, according to TCO Fly Shop. Caddis (14-16) and small Craneflies (16) were hatching in the late afternoon and evening. Effective flies included Hendrickson Emergers (16), Red Quill (16), and Near Nuff Sculpins (6-8).

Susquehanna River (Cumberland County) — Smallmouth bass were feeding at tributary mouths at the end of April, when water was close to 50 degrees. Rubber worms in watermelon or motor-oil color were productive for anglers, who are reminded that from May 1 through June 15, targeting bass is illegal in the special regulation section of the lower Susquehanna and all tributaries.

Raystown Branch Juniata River — Brown trout up to 21 inches were hitting on the opening day of trout season.

East Licking Creek, Lost Creek (Juniata County) — Anglers were catching nice brook trout up to 19 inches, and brown trout in recent weeks.

Little Juniata River (Huntingdon County) — Water was a little high and in the mid-40s April 29, according to TCO Fly Shop. Grannoms (12-14) were hatching heavily. Streamers and nymphs were productive, Tan Caddis (14-16), Blue-Winged Olives (18-22) and Midges (20-26) also were hatching. Productive flies included Black Elk Hair Caddis (12-14), Deep Sparkle Pupa Green (14-16), Olive Slumpbuster (6-10), and Blue-Winged Olive Film Critic (18-20).


Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) — Wallenpaupack Sports Shop reported April 29 that striped bass up to 20 pounds were being released on big wide lures, and smallmouths from 3 to 5 pounds were being released near shore on live bait.  Trout were hitting Rapalas. 

Beltzville Lake (Carbon County) — Anglers were releasing largemouth bass up to 5 pounds on crankbaits and crawlers, and smallmouth bass up to 19 inches on grubs at the end of April.

Lehigh River — Trout were hitting on spinners and stickbaits when the season opened near the Lehigh Gorge and downriver in the Jim Thorpe area. 


Octoraro Lake (Chester County) — Jim Neary’s Bait & Tackle reported April 28 that crappie action was in full swing, with fish hitting fathead minnows and jigs with mini-tubes. Largemouth bass were being released on rubber worms in green pumpkin or black and blue, as well as spinnerbaits and crankbaits. Numbers of bullhead catfish were reported along the rocks. Only a couple of channel catfish were reported and the white perch bite was sporadic on fatheads and in-line spinners.

Levittown Lake (Bucks County) — Brinkman’s Bait & Tackle reported limits of trout were being caught on Gulp and spinnerbaits at the end of April. 

Penn-Warner Lake (Bucks County) — Chain pickerel were hitting through the end of April.

Lehigh Canal (Northampton County) — Limits of trout were reported on minnows and paste baits in recent weeks. At the canal in Bethlehem, anglers were doing well by jigging small rubber worms. 

Delaware River — American shad were running in late April, with smaller fish being caught on spoons and darts.

Delaware River (Philadelphia County) — Striped bass were hitting below the Commodore Barry Bridge in recent weeks where a 41-pounder was reported by Brinkman’s Bait & Tackle April 28. Nice catches also were coming from the airport area up to the Tacony. Productive baits were blood worms, bunker and salted clams.

Compiled by Deborah Weisberg

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