Pennsylvania Outdoor News Fishing & Hunting Report – April 12, 2019
Mild weather, with a little rainfall, brought out anglers for the opening day of trout season in the southeast region March 30.
The season opens for the rest of the state April 13. The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission is stocking trout across the state. For a schedule, visit www.fishandboat.com.
Anglers are reminded that from April 15 through June 14, the catch-and-immediate-release of bass season is in effect.
Walleyes are out of season until May 4.
Boaters are reminded that the state’s mandatory life jacket requirement remains in effect through April 30 for anyone in a kayak, canoe or other boat less than 16 feet.
Lake Erie tributaries — FishErie.com reported March 29 that while streams were low and clear, they were holding numbers of steelhead, particularly on the west side, and a warm rainfall in the forecast was expected to trigger a run.
Presque Isle Bay (Erie County) — A nice perch bite was reported March 29. Numbers of steelhead also were in the bay.
Pymatuning Reservoir (Crawford County) — Perch and crappies were hitting as of March 29. The walleye bite was sporadic, with some catches coming near the spillway and the causeway.
Cascade Quarry (Lawrence County) — A few anglers were catching trout on plastic worms in late March, with white and lime-green the most productive colors. Spinners and spoons also were effective.
Lake Arthur (Butler County) — Appalachian Trails tackle shop reported March 31 that anglers were getting into some nice crappies, with a few 1-pounders in the mix. Numbers of yellow perch also were reported; a few were over 10 inches and loaded with eggs. Most of the crappies and perch were hitting on small fatheads and waxworms. Some perch also were reported on redworms. A few bass were reported, along with a northern pike around 40 inches released on a shiner. Before the season closed, action on walleyes was spotty as fish moved near the shallows.
North Park Lake (Allegheny County) — Anglers were catching recently-stocked trout at this popular impoundment near Pittsburgh in recent weeks. It is open to fishing year-round.
Little Mahoning Creek (Indiana County) — Early-morning anglers were catching trout in the Catch and Release, Fly-Fishing Only secattion, which was stocked March 16. Water conditions were excellent in late March.
Yellow Creek Lake (Indiana County) — Crappies were hitting for a few anglers in the coves, although water temperatures were still too cold for an active bite. Anglers near the day-use area were catching northern pike.
Buffalo Creek (Armstrong County) — Trout were hitting on flies, soft plastics and spinner baits through late March in the Keystone Select Trout Waters section.
Pike Run, Dutch Fork Creek (Washington County) — Nice-size trout were reported in the Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only sections through late March. Deep pools where trout were schooling in cold water temperatures were productive spots to target. Small plastic worms on fly-rods or spinning tackle were effective.
Monongahela River — Walleyes and muskies were reported below the locks, with live minnows effective.
Foster Joseph Sayers Lake (Centre County) — Panfish were reported on live bait, spinners, and flies at the spillway in recent weeks. Green Squirmy Wormies and green streamers were productive.
Spring Creek (Centre County) — Trout were hitting on Blue-Winged Olive nymphs and emergers (18-22), and Blue-Winged Olive dry flies (18-22) in late March when water was in the mid-40s. Other productive flies included black Zebra Midges (18-22), Walt’s Worms (12-16), and Olive Scuds (14-18). During and after rainfall, olive and black Slumpbusters (6-10) were effective along banks or in slow, back waters. Suckers were hitting occasionally on sucker spawn for anglers targeting trout.
Fishing Creek (Clinton County) — Anglers were catching trout in the deep runs, fishing nymphs under indicators, such as Squirmy Wormies under New Zealand indicators, on cold days through late March when water was in the 40s and a little high and slightly green in color. Trout were also hitting large Golden Stoneflies, Pats Rubberlegs (8-12), Frenchies (14-19), Flashback Pheasant Tail Nymphs (14-18), and orange/peach Mopflies. Sculpins and black and olive streamers (4-8) also were recommended. Blue-Winged Olives were (18-22) were hatching during afternoon hours. Suckers were hitting sucker spawn.
Raystown Lake (Huntingdon County) — As of March 30, largemouth bass were hitting.
Juniata River (Juniata County) — Smallmouth bass were reported in outflowing streams along the river through late March.
Laurel Run (Luzerne County) — Children were catching trout on the recent Mentored Youth Day, although water conditions were cold and high.
Sherman Creek (Perry County) — Smallmouth bass were hitting on tubes and hair jigs through late March.
Lake Wallenpaupack (Pike County) — Hunters Gallery reported March 31 nice catches of perch, sunfish and crappies. When ice was still on parts of the lake a couple of weeks earlier, anglers were catching large striped bass up to 40 inches long and 25 pounds.
Delaware, Susquehanna rivers — Some nice-sized muskies were reported by Hunters Gallery in late March. Walleyes also were reported before the season closed.
Curtis Reservoir (Lackawanna County) — Water was fully open by late March, and promising good action on perch.
Lackawanna River — Anglers are advised that the river will be stocked from the Vision 2000 lot to just upstream of the Simpson Bridge, but the upper section of the river was off the pre-season stocking schedule because of the ongoing construction project.
Memorial Lake (Lebanon County) — Coble’s Bait and Tackle reported March 31 that yellow perch, nice-sized bluegills and crappies were hitting on crappie darts with waxworms, small redworms, and fathead minnows. Panfish anglers were also catching the occasional chain pickerel.
Octoraro Lake (Chester County) — Jim Neary’s Bait and Tackle reported March 31 that crappies were hitting near the rocks along Spruce Grove Road on artificials, little grubs, and curly- and straight-tail jigs fished near the bottom, or under bobbers four or five feet down. Bass were mostly inactive in 47-degree water temperatures. Walleyes were hitting on medium shiners and grub tails and 1/8th -ounce jigheads and 4-inch grub tails near the covered bridge. A few white perch were coming in at the covered bridge. The lake’s north side was producing carp for bow fishermen.
Struble, Chambers lakes (Chester County) — Some nice-sized crappies were reported in late March, with the bite just starting to come on. Crappie jigs or small minnows fished three to five feet under pencil bobbers, around structure, such as downed or sunken trees, were effective.
Delaware River — Anglers were targeting striped bass through late March but the bite wasn’t active.
Little Schuylkill River — The Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only section near New Ringgold was yielding stocked trout on various lures and flies through late March, Spinners worked slowly in current, and rubber worms and small jerkbaits were effective.
Blue Marsh Lake, Lake Ontelaunee (Berks County) — Crappies were in pre-spawn mode in late March and becoming active along the shorelines. Minnows or jigs were effective. Largemouth bass also were reported.
Compiled by Deborah Weisberg