Archive for category Fishing Reports

Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 11-28-11

News

Weather Blahs: Following a stretch of fairly nice weather over the holiday period, the start of a new week brought lots of rain starting on Sunday and continuing through at least Wednesday.  The Allegheny, French Creek,Erie tributaries and most inland streams are blown out.  As the open water fishing season draws to a close in December, it appears unusually nasty weather patterns that have plagued our angling all year are determined to be a pain-in-the-you-know-where until ice up.

 

On a positive, fun note, Juanita Hampton of the Crawford County Convention and Visitors Bureau suggests everyone stop by YouTube to the latest CrawfordCountyfishing video:  Fishing Crawford County.mp4

 

Crawford County Waters

 

 

Dave Lefebre with Pymatuning walleye (Darl Black © photo)

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Lefebre (Erie): “Through Thanksgiving week, walleyes continued to bite at Pymatuning.  I have been having a lot of fun doing something other than bass fishing, and it has been productive in terms of fish for dinner.  I’ve been eating a lot of ‘eye in the last few weeks.  Vertical jigging a Heddon Sonar has been the ticket on the southern part of the lake.”

 

Chub Hornstein (Meadville): “I went to Pymatuning on the day before Thanksgiving.  I fished all afternoon without a bite, but the fish turned on about 4 PM.  I caught about 15 walleye before dark.  All but three of the ‘eyes were sub-legal.  The keepers included two in the 16” to 18” range and a whopper that weighed nine pounds.  All fish came on a ¼-ounce Heddon Sonar in Perch or Shad patterns fished on points at depths from 12’ to 17’ on the lower end of the lake.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait –Erie): “Crappie catches in the Bay have slowed way down – the fish have moved apparently and only a few small ones are being caught.  Steelheads are being caught at the Waterworks.  One customer stopped with several very nice perch from the North Pier, and I heard that a burbot was caught on the North Pier.”

(First burbot of the season!  Great Lakes Winter water temps are upon us!)

 

Danny Jones (Northeast): “I went out Thanksgiving Day to PresqueIsleBayfor a couple hours.  I caught 38 largemouth bass – all caught on a spinnerbait with a Zoom Super Fluke trailer.”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Andy (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run): “Creeks are blown out from too much rain.  There will not be any tributary fishing until they begin to recede somewhat – perhaps in time for the first weekend in December.  Good news, the high water should bring some fresh fish in from the lake and push other fish further upstream.  Until streams are fishable, anglers should focus their fishing on the lake shore near the creek mouths.  Power Bait and spoons should produce.  Before the water rose, fly fishermen were catching steelhead to 10 pounds on black and olive Wooly Buggers.”

 

Steelhead anglers at mouth of Trout Run (Darl Black © photo)

Phil Stern of Pittsburgh with three steelhead taken on lake shore at Trout Run (Darl Black © photo)

Darl Black (Cochranton): “Over the weekend before the rains started, I visited several steelhead fishing sites on the west side, including portions of Elk Creek,Walnut Creekand the mouth of Trout Run.  Lots of fisherpersons (men, women and children) taking advantage of the holiday and good weather, trying their hand at catching steelhead.  Of course I witnessed more “trying” than “catching” – I only saw a couple fish landed plus a few anglers leaving with fish on stringers.  As I shot pictures atWalnut Creek, one angler approached and asked if I had come to town to ‘watch the circus.’  Anglers fishing the lake shore at Trout Run seemed to be doing as well as fishermen in the creeks.”

 

Terry Farrell (Hook, Line & Stitch –Meadville): “I’ve been tying a big hackle fly with women’s blue eyelashes that has really caught the attention of steelhead.  I demonstrated this fly during the Crawford County Outdoors Expo earlier this fall, and I’ve been having trouble keeping up with the demand from fly fishermen ever since.  Then one individual comes in with a request to make an “Eyelash Jig” – he wanted it all white with a marabou tail.  Said he was catching crappies with it.”

 

Mercer County Waters

 

 

Shenango Lake crappies caught by Ken Smith (Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “Now I have to share spots with goose hunters this week on Shenango, thereby limiting the big fish spots I can fish.  I didn’t do nearly as well as the last five trips on the lake.  Still, I was able to enjoy some good days on the lake.  Between hunters and high winds, I still put some quality fish in the boat.  Blakemore Road Runners fished slowly over shallow wood collected the most crappies for the livewell. Lake level is still dropping and the shoreline is really muddy.  Plastic on the boat floor will help keep it cleaner but expect some mud on the floor.  Hope everyone had a good Turkey Day!”

 

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Outfitters) – Bob’s report was received before the rains started:  “Neshannock right now is in great shape.  Should be OK for the next week unless we get heavy rain.  It will be a nice week to fish, as most guys will be in the woods after deer.  Dress warm and wear a little orange to be seen!”

 

Venango County Waters

 

 

Dale Black with Allegheny pike (Darl Black © photo)

 

Marilyn Black with Bronzeback Friday smallmouth taken on live shiner (Darl Black © photo)

Allegheny River

Marilyn Black (Cochranton): “Dale Black, Darl and myself headed to the Allegheny Riveron Bronzeback Friday – our annual smallmouth trip…an alternative to that crazy Black Friday shopping.  Even though the river was dirtier than we like, we oozed confidence that some bass would be taken on jigs.  Just in case, my back-up was a bucket of live creek bait that I had personally trapped the day before.  The only other boat on the OilCitypool was another friend, Ernie Pate from Butler.  Dale and Darl fished only artificial baits.  Dale boated one northern pike on a Yum Tube, but Darl never connected with a single fish.  I had three or four pick ups on live shiners, hooking two smallmouths.  One 15-incher was landed, but a much larger one was lost at the side of the boat.  With additional rain fall this week, the river has shot up to nine feet; unlikely it will be fishable for at least a week.”

 

Ernie Pate (Butler): “We didn’t catch a fish on Friday – only had two bites.  I think the fast, muddy water has them off their feed.  Once the water clears and current slows a little, the fish will bite.  It was a bad combination of cold water and 20 mph wind over the weekend.”

 

Mike Martin (Cochranton): “My buddy John and I kayaked fromOilCitytoFranklinthis past Saturday.  It was a very comfortable day for kayaking, but the smallmouth fishing was not good.  Matter of fact we got skunked.  We fished mostly hair jigs and jerkbaits.  There were a number of boats on the water but they were targeting walleyes; we observed a walleye being boated in the K-Mart eddy.”

 

Kahle Lake

Dale Black (OilCity): “I headed over toKahleLakeon Saturday after Bronzeback Friday on the river.  I figured to catch some largemouth, because I normally do well there in the late fall.  I never had a hit.  I tried a variety of baits and various deep & shallow spots on the lake without success.  There were half-dozen boats on the lake; most were catching yellow perch.  Launching is difficult due to the draw down.”

 

 

Dustin Shay with Woodcock Creek walleye (Shay photo)

French Creek (Erie, Crawford, Mercer andVenangoCounties)

Dustin Shay (Meadville) – Due to heavy rains the last couple days, French Creek is blown out for the foreseeable future.  The Creek was high from previous rains, but now fishing is impossible.  However, with the higher water in French Creek tributaries, Dustin says fishermen should look to these feeder creeks as a fishing opportunity – especially as water in the tribs first begin to clear.  High water often encourages walleyes to move into some tribs to the first hole or beaver dam.  Or perhaps in the case of Woodcock Creek, high water pushes some of the Woodcock Dam tailrace fish downstream towards French Creek.  The day before Thanksgiving, Dustin caught three legal walleye in Woodcock Creek on a Sebile Hard Swimmer.

 

 

Bulletin Board

Bulletin Board: Jetcraft boat for sale.

ForSale: 2001 Jetcraft Kokanee 1625 with 90/65 hp jet outboard on a King galvanized trailer; asking $13,500; phone 814-758-3836.  “Boat is in great shape,” says owner Jeff Brunton ofFranklin.

 

Gamma Salutes

The spool of Gamma Line is awarded to Dustin Shay for his Woodcock Creek walleye photo.

 

Weekly Drawing

Ernie Pate was the contributor’s name drawn for the Yum/PRADCO lure pack.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Monthly          Free Fly-Tying Classes                               814-590-1366

Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch (At the Bank Mall),Meadville

2nd Tuesday of each month;6 PM to 7:30 PM

 

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

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Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 11-21-11

News

–       The weather is looking pretty good through the Thanksgiving holiday weekend.  After you fill your tummy on Thursday, many of you will have three days to fish before gun season for deer arrives on Monday, November 28.  According to our regular contributors, here are the current hotspots in NW PA

  • PymatuningLake(Crawford Co.) for walleye
  • ShenangoLake(Mercer County Co.) for crappie
  • Allegheny River(Venango Co.) for walleye and some smallmouth action
  • Lake Erietributary streams (Erie Co.) for steelhead – primarily Elk.
  • French Creek (all counties) for walleye

 

Venango County Waters

 

 

River walleye on live bait (Lou Letterle photo)

Allegheny River

Mike Horrobin (CLTackle.com & Jigger Wholesale): “It’s been a good week of fishing – when we didn’t get some ungodly downpours.  The Allegheny and French Creek are both producing walleye on live bait.  I look for good fishing this coming week as well, but with the holiday and deer season, fishermen may be a rare commodity on our local waters.”

 

Bill Logan (Pleasantville): “I fished the river at OilCitytoday, Monday, November 21.  I had five hook-ups with fish, landing four smallmouth bass.  Two bass came on Berkley Gulp! Minnow and two on a Sweet Beaver soft plastic fished on a jighead.  It was slow, but I’m going again this week.  Fishing is addicting and I need more before ice-up.”

 

Dale Black (OilCity): “I slipped out to the river on Sunday afternoon for a couple hours.  Only landed two bass, but both were quality fish.  One was just shy of 16 inches, while the other was 19-inches long and weighed exactly 4 pounds.  What a chunky river bass!  Both came on Yum tubes fished on 8-pound Gamma Polyflex line.”

 

Kneal Wiegel (Wiegel Bros. Marine): “There have been three ‘locals’ on the river out of the Franklin ramp almost every day this past week, and they tell me they are catching walleye like crazy.”

 

Corey Letterle with Allegheny smallmouth (Letterle photo)

Brandi Letterle with Allegheny double (Letterle photo)

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “I took my two kids, Brandi and Corey, fishing on the Allegheny for just two hours last weekend, November 13.  They caught 7 walleye and 4 smallmouth bass, and lost quite a few other fish.  The biggest walleye was 22 inches, while the largest bass was 17 inches.  All fish were caught on live creek chubs and white suckers.  The wind was wild but the fishing was good.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Justus Lake

No report, but trout catches should be good with the low water temperatures and fairly pleasant days.

 

Oil Creek rainbow trout (Bill Logan photo)

Oil Creek

Bill Logan (Pleasantville) fished Oil Creek earlier in the week.  He reports catching four nice rainbow trout by “twitching a streamer cross current.”

 

Little Sandy

Mike Horrobin says Little Sandy remains fishable and trout catches are pretty good on this stream and other trout streams.  Fish are being caught on nymphs and streamers.

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford, Mercer andVenangoCounties)

Mike Horrobin (Franklin) and Dustin Shay (Meadville) report their contacts say the walleye bite is pretty good on the Creek right now, and will only get better over the next couple weeks.  Fish are being caught on mainly on indigenous live bait or hair jigs.  Walleyes may be caught anywhere in French Creek fromFranklinall the way toUnion City.

 

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “Walleye continues to be the drawing card this month.  Two fishermen stopped by the shop on Saturday; both had a nice limit of walleye.  They caught over 45 walleye in one day – not bad!  Most fishermen are catching their fish with blade baits.  A handful of anglers fishing the Jamestown Marina docks are catching crappies, and there are reports that the deep water crappies are also biting – but on the south end of the lake most guys are focused on walleye right now.”

 

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “Not may fishermen out this past week, so not much to report.  The few guys I did talk to were still catching 10” to 13” perch along the causeway on live minnows.  Crappie and bluegill are being caught aroundFries Roadand at Red Cross.  No reports of walleye on the north end.”

Dave Lefebre with Pymatuning walleye on blade bait (Darl Black © photo)

 

Dave Lefebre (Erie): “On Sunday, November 20, Barry Hohn (Saegertown) and I each took a limit of walleye at Pymatuning on the south end.  Our biggest ‘eye was 25 inches and the average size was about 19 inches.  The fish came on Heddon Sonar blade baits in 26 feet of water.  We were down earlier in the week, and took limits of walleye on that day as well – on blade baits.”

 

 

Darl Black with Conneaut Lake smallmouth bass (Marilyn Black © photo)

Conneaut Lake

Marilyn Black (Cochranton): “Darl and I made a final run at Conneaut in search of a six-pound smallmouth.  The water temperature was 48 degrees – perfect for late fall smallmouth.  Our first pass down a favorite smallmouth bank yielded nothing.  But when we dropped anchor to cast a blade bait on a quick-dropping point, Darl hooked something heavy on his first cast into 25 feet of water.  There was a lot of resistance, it moved left and right, and he had difficulty in reeling it up from deep water – however he said it didn’t feel like a fish unless it was tail-snagged walleye or musky.  Finally, it came into view.  I was able to slide the Frabill Net under it and lift it aboard.  The catch was a porous rock about the size of a super large softball.  It was a “keeper”, and now adorns our rock garden at home!  Several casts later, Darl hooked and landed a 3 pound smallmouth on a gold & orange Cicada Blade Bait.  He lost another smallie at the boat and I missed a northern pike.  That was our total catch for four hours on the water.  No really big smallies like in past years.  Nor could we find any deepwater white bass or deep crappies.  It would seem our Conneaut Lake season went out as a sparkler rather a big bang – a bright moment with a good brown bass but not the grand fireworks hoped for.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait –Erie): “A customer stopped in on Sunday with 28 nice perch he had taken off the North pier.  Another customer had 3 steelhead at the Water Works, while another customer reported a mess of crappies.”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Mike Tome (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run): “Considering how low and how clear the streams are, anglers are catching a fair number of steelhead.  More fish moved into the streams with the rain earlier in the week, but the run may be dwindling down.  Anglers are still catching steelhead at the mouth of the creeks in the lake – when Mother Nature cooperates with a favorable south wind.  We are expecting a good rain on Tuesday, and if we get that 2 inches as predicted, streams should be in good shape for Thanksgiving holiday weekend.  Black Friday is always one of our busiest days of the fall season. Oh yes, I weighed a 9.5 pound brown trout this week taken at the mouth of Trout Run.”

 

Steelhead anglers on Elk Creek (Darl Black © photo)

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “Low and clear – sounding like a broken record.  The last good rain brought some more fish into the streams, and pushed some fish further inland.  Think small and light – single eggs, Mini Foo Jig with live wax worm or floating a live minnow.   Small black nymphs and light colored Sucker Spawn are being used by fly fishermen.  Best bite is early and late in day.  Fish riffles during mid day.  Starting next week, we will close at2 PMon weekdays.”

 

Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Bob Mohra (Fergies): “The report from Wilhelm this week is the same as last week: crappies and bluegills being caught off the docks of the marina.  Not many fishermen on the lake…not like years gone by.”

 

 

Ken Smith with November crappies (Smith photo)

 

Smith’s Shenango crappies (Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “I had four days of fantastic crappie fishing this past week on Shenango.  Tuesday was probably my best big fish day this fall.  Wednesday was a great day for numbers.  Saturday was another day for good-size fish, but the wind was brutal, forcing me to fish spots out of the wind.  Still had a good day for numbers by casting Road Runner heads with Southern Pro Triple Tails to shallow brush in 10 feet of water or less; the bigger fish came by hang-gliding a 1/8 ounce plain jighead with a Southern Pro Hot Grub over stumps in 17 feet of water.  No doubt about it – November is the best BIG crappie month on this lake.  I’ve caught many over 12 inches with the biggest one going 16 inches.  Time is winding down so I’ll have to put the boat away next weekend, but I’ve had a great season on Shenango.  Hope everyone enjoyed the reports and put the info to good use.  Take care and have a happy holiday season.  PS: Darl, that was a good article you wrote for CRAPPIE NOW online (www.crappienow.com).”

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Outfitters): “Neshannock Creek is in good shape and not getting much angling pressure.  Most guys are in the woods hunting or up atEriefor steelhead.  Great time to be out on the inland trout streams!”

 

 

Scott Kinard’s search of Wild Brown Trout (Scott Kinard photo)

 

In search of Wild Brown Trout (Kinard photo)

 

In search of Wild Brown Trout (Kinard photo)

Special Trout Report

Scott Kinard (EllwoodCity): “With the steelhead run in full swing, I took the opportunity to avoid the crowds and hike into a small wild brown trout stream inNorthwest PA.  Small native streams can yield numbers of “Wild Trout” (non-hatchery raised).  Places such as these hold trout that survive through natural reproduction and the definition of success is measured in “quality” rather than size.  Matt Steffler and I took a four hour hike in search of these colorful species of brown trout and brookies.  We had a good day – landing 15 plus wild browns with the biggest one around 18 inches.  It’s important to remember that our human footprint in places such as this should always be at minimum to ensure these fisheries will survive for generations to come…a true case for catch-and-release at all times.  It was a great day!  It’s nice to see that waters such as these do still exist in this part of the state.”  (See Photos #10, #11, #12)

 

Bulletin Board – Notes from Contributors

(Post a note about selling a boat or fishing equipment, or if looking for a fishing partner.)

 

Rich Conlon (Wexford): “No fishing this weekend – winterizing the boats…boohoo”

 

Grady Codd (Mars): “I haven’t been out fishing in awhile what with school and work.  I hope to possibly get out to Woodcock or Conneaut sometime before first ice – but I don’t have a boat.  If anyone is looking for a fishing partner for day, I can be reached at grcodd@gmail.com.”

 

Gamma Salutes

The photo contributor drawn for a spool of Gamma Line is Lou Letterle.

 

Weekly Drawing

The report contributor drawn for a packet of PRADCO baits is Scott Kinnard

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Monthly          Free Fly-Tying Classes                               814-590-1366

Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch (At the Bank Mall),Meadville

2nd Tuesday of each month;6 PM to 7:30 PM

 

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

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Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 11-14-11

News

Current NW PA Hotspots

–      MercerCounty: The crappie bite at Shenango remains strong!

–      CrawfordCounty: Pymatuning is pumping out the walleyes – including some hawgs!

–      VenangoCounty: Smallmouth bass on the Allegheny are on the late fall feed, along with walleyes!

–      ErieCounty: The tribs are filled with steelhead, and filled with anglers looking for some rain to stain the too clear water to improve catch rate.

 

Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Bob Mohra (Fergies Bait): “Anglers fishing from the docks at theMarinaare catching a mix bag of crappie and bluegill.  I also had reports of walleye being caught off the causeway.”

 

 

Shenango crappie caught by Ken Smith (Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): Thursday, Nov 10 “Another good day atShenangoLake.  The crappie bite was consistent.  Fish are shallow in blow-downs, as well as deep on the drops and on brushpiles.  Big numbers and good size, too.  Took a young friend, Kevin Austin, out on Monday and show him my hang glide method.  He caught on quickly and helped put 35 quality fish in the boat that day.  I went back out on Tuesday to try some different spots, and did well that day, too.  I caught well over a limit but only kept 20 fish to fry up for my friend’s family who lost their mother last weekend.  Prayers go out to the Cannon family.”

Saturday, Nov 12: “The bite was tough today.  I caught over 40 crappies but not a lot of keepers.  The wind was blowing pretty strong so I had to fish my secondary spots.  Fished heavy jighead with Southern Pro twister tails on deep points to produce all the fish today.”

 

Shenango crappie caught in late fall on Charlie Brewer Whirly Bee

Editor’s Note: I’ve caught nice crappie at Shenango this time of year on a Charlie Brewer Whirly Bee.  Typically white is the only color they want.

 

Shenango River (Upper section)

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “They have been letting water out of Pymatuning and its put good flow in theShenangoRiver.  Anglers have been catching walleye in the river below the dam, including a 28-incher over the weekend.”

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Fly Shop): “The stream is in great shape and fishing is okay.  Late mornings and afternoons seem to be better than daylight.  Look’s like temps will not be too bad this coming week.”

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

Bill Logan (Pleasantville): “On Monday, November 7, I caught 9 chunky bass in the river.  Tube jigs, Gulp! Minnows and flipping jigs fished at depths from 4 to 20 feet.  I was back on the river the next day, but wind was so strong it was hard to detect bites, and I landed only 3 bass.”

 

Lou Letterle with Allegheny River pike (Letterle photo)

Lou Letterle with very nice Allegheny River walleye (Letterle photo)

Ken Dudash with Allegheny River redhorse sucker (Letterle photo)

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “Ken Dudash (Pittsburgh) and I fished the river on Wednesday, November 9.  We had a decent day, but fought the wind all afternoon – boat control and strike detection were difficult.  We ended up catching and releasing a total of 12 fish – 6 walleye, 3 pike, a redhorse sucker and a couple bass.  Very nice variety!  Just like last week, all our fish were caught either on live creek chubs or hair jigs.  One of the walleyes measured 26 inches and weighed 6.5 pounds.”

 

Rich Conlon (Wexford): “I fished the Allegheny with Ernie Pate (Butler) on Saturday, November 12.  The smallies wanted to bite but we struggled to keep baits in front of them.  Gusting winds made it difficult to keep the baits in the feeding zone without snagging in the rocks.  We did manage to catch about 20 smallmouth bass in four hours of fishing.  We lost maybe another 10 fish.  Water temp was 44 to 45 degrees.”

 

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Tackle/CLTackle.com): “This week we had several good reports of walleye catches in the river.  Everything I heard about was on live bait or jigs tipped with live bait (either shiners or creek bait).

Trout streams

Mike Horrobin: “Trout fishing is still good.  I was out this week but didn’t see anyone else.  I caught 3 trout on streamers.”

 

Crawford County Waters

 

 

Denny Altimus with a 7.5 and 8-pound walleye from Pymatuning. (Darl Black © photo)

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Lefebre (Erie): “On Saturday, November 12, I traveled to Pymatuning with my uncle Denny Altimus (Erie) for a fall walleye trip.  I planned to show him how to catch walleye on blade baits on deep water points, but as it turned out, Denny showed me how to catch huge Pymatuning walleye with bait.  Using regular fathead minnows on a drop-shot rigging, Denny caught a 7.5-pound and an 8-pound walleye (both fish weighed on official scales).  I only came away with a couple 15-inch walleye and several crappies on my Heddon Sonar blade bait.  Denny’s walleyes were two of the largest I’ve ever seen from Pymatuning.”

 

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “There have been good catches of crappie, perch and bluegill off the docks at the Jamestown Marina.  Guys are still catching walleye on blades during the day in boats out deep in the end near the dam.  Some anglers are throwing crankbaits from shore at night and catching walleye.  Deep crappie catches are sporadic.”

 

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “All fishermen must have been in the woods last week!  The few anglers I talked with reported mixed success.  Along the causeway, perch would bite only when the wind was blowing; when the wind died, so did the bite.  They are still pulling 10” to 12” perch, however.

 

“I had one gentleman buy a pack of the American Freshwater Fisherman Lucky Seven Hooks; when he stopped back later he said ‘All my other hooks are going in the trash.  These hooks are unbelievable!  I caught 32 perch with them on Tuesday.’”

 

Hall continues, “Walleye off Orchard have been active.  There a lot of anglers are wading the shoreline in the evening, throwing Smithwick Rattlin’ Rogues and Cotton Cordell Wally Divers.  Some walleyes are being caught around the Causeway on Cicadas and Vibra-Maxx.  Bluegill and crappie have been reported in small numbers aroundFries Road area and shoreline north of Spillway.  There is still a lot of time before the water freezes!  Don’t miss out on good fishing!”

 

Tamarack Lake

Chuck Papinchak (Cochranton): “We continue to catch an assortment of species fishing from shore using live minnows as bait, including keeper size crappies, some nice perch, a few largemouth bass and an occasional walleye.  Best action seems to be late afternoon.”

 

Woodcock Lake

“I’ve taken a few trips to Woodcock Lak eover the past two weeks, and have hooked three large musky (plus a follow from another fish) – all while fishing for bass.  I lost two of the muskies at the boat when they bit through my line; I was not using a wire leader.  I did manage to land a very nice musky on Saturday, November 12; the fish was approximately 50 inches long – sorry I was fishing alone and could not get a photo of the fish.  The muskies seem to be holding on the breaklines near shore where the water drops quickly.  With the lake drawn-down, there are very few (if any) weedlines left so the fish seem to be positioned around stumps.  I’m sure experienced musky hunters have better equipment to catch these toothy critters than I did.  These muskies ate my All-Terrain Tackle Bass Jigs.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait –Eriestore): “The crappie bite in the bay has slowed down.  Fishermen are catching steelhead at the Water Works and in Marina Lake.”

 

 

John Hall with Conneaut Creek steelhead (Hall photo)

 

JT Davis with Conneaut Creek steelhead (Hall photo)

Lake Erie tributaries

John Hall (Erie): “The first Great Lakes Steelhead Expo last weekend was a huge success.  We’re already planning for next year.  Of course the perfect antidote to all the pre-Expo work was a day of steelheading on Sunday.  It was a super day even though the water was low and clear.  Here’s a picture of beautiful Conneaut Creek buck I took on a Joe-fly.  I also attached a photo of a steelhead which JT Davis caught on a Joe-fly.”

 

Anglers on Walnut Creek (Darl Black © photo)

Seven year old Jeremiah Barni with a slippery 8 pound steelhead (Darl Black © photo)

Darl Black (Cochranton): “On Saturday, November 12, I visitedWalnut Creekand Elk Creek – not to fish, but to take photos.  Fishing pressure was light on Elk.  The lower section of Walnut had its typical weekend crowd.  However, with extremely clear and extremely low water (and crowded conditions), few anglers were catching fish.  One young lad, Jeremiah Barni (Washington,PA) was battling a steelhead when I arrived at the Basin.  He had drawn a crowd of spectators cheering him on.  After perhaps six or seven minutes, one of the adults in his group finally slid a net under the fish.  As 7-year-old Jeremiah tried to hold the 8 pound steelhead for a photo, the fish wiggled from his grasp.  The steelhead was returned to the water.

 

Mike Tome (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run): “We need rain.  We have not had rain in 2-1/2 weeks.  The snowfall to the south did not help.  The tribs are so low and clear, it looks like summer.  Fish are in the stream but spooky.  There are trout in the lake at creek mouths, but they need water to move in.  On days with south wind, anglers are catching them along the lake shore at creek mouths.”

 

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “To catch steelhead in those low, clear streams right now, you’ve got to think small.  Fly fishing are using black or brown nymphs, and light color sucker spawn flies.  Spin-fishermen are catching fish on single eggs or emerald shiner.  You’ve got to get out of bright conditions – fish early or late, or look for shaded areas to fish during the day.”

 

Fishing Tip of the Week

 

John Hall with brown trout taken with “trout bead” last year on Elk Creek (Hall photo)

Recently Top Brass Tackle inquired if steelhead anglers were using “trout beads” onPennsylvaniastreams.  I had no idea what they were, so I asked several of the regular contributors what they knew.  Here is John Hall’s response:

“Some guys are using the trout bead.  The bead can be rigged different ways: (1) pegged, as an attractor 5 or 6 inches ahead of a nymph; (2) pegged, just above a single hook as a single egg; (3) and sometimes I let one sit over my knot when fishing a wooly bugger.  I hooked a nice brown last year on upper Elk Creek using a bead.  See attached photo.”

 

Gamma Salutes

From among individuals submitting photos, Ken Smith was drawn to receive a spool of Gamma Line.

 

Weekly Drawing

This week, Fishing Report contributor Bill Logan ofTitusvillewas drawn as winner of the Yum/PRADCO Lure pack.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Monthly          Free Fly-Tying Classes                               814-590-1366

Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch (At the Bank Mall),Meadville

2nd Tuesday of each month;6 PM to 7:30 PM

 

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

 

Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

No Comments

Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 11-7-11

News

–       Water temperature drops, fish-catching is hot!  With water temperatures in the upper 40s, it’s the time of year that I look forward to all summer long.  For anglers in the know, right now – although a brief period – is some of the most exciting fishing of the entire season for gamefish (including bass, walleye, pike and musky) as well as panfish (including crappie, perch and white bass).  Unfortunately, many fishermen have already put up the rod for the gun or bow – or are pre-occupied with winter preparation.  But it’s not too late to Go Fish!  On area lakes you’ve two to three weeks of bassin’ and up to six weeks of open water walleye and musky fishing (depending on skim ice forming).  On the Allegheny and French Creek, walleyes are just turning on; river smallmouths are catchable as long as water temperature remains above 40 degrees.  Go for it!

–       Winter Report Schedule: The Fishing Report will continue weekly until the end of November.  Starting in December, I’ll only issue the Fishing Report twice a month until April, when it returns to a Weekly Report.

–       Temporary Boating Regulation for Oil City Pool of Allegheny River: A notice posted at the Oil City ramp this week states a boating club will be running special high speed tests on November 12 & 13 through a special PFBC permit.  As part of the permit, the entire Oil City Pool will be posted Slow – No Wake by the PFBC.  (Ouch!  So if you normally launch at Oil City to run south, you way want to plan going out of Franklin ramp – otherwise it’s a long two mile chug at no wake speed.)

–       Read More: Check out Darl Black’s article in the Pennsylvania Angler & Boater on coldwater fishing on the Allegheny River.

 

Erie County Waters

 

 

Brendan Conlon (Erie) with a 40 inch pike from PIB (Rich Conlon photo)

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait –Eriestore): “We are just concluding the absolute best fall crappie fishing that I seen inPresqueIsleBaysince I first opened the store here!  Practically everyone was getting limits, and the fish were big.  I weighed a 3.2 pounder from the Bay – the heaviest PIB crappie in my 40 years of selling bait.  While the crappie is slowing down, I’ve had customers report catching perch in the 12-inch range off the East Pier, northern pike inMiseryBayand steelhead down at the Water Works.  A handful of bass anglers will be having fun with the largemouth on suspending jerkbaits in PIB almost to ice-up.”

 

 

Rich Conlon with Lake Erie smallmouth (Conlon photo)

Lake Erie

Rich Conlon (Butler): “I managed two trips to Eriefor smallmouth recently – on October 23rd and 30th.  On the 30th I went with Ernie Pate and we struggled to catch 5 smallmouth.  Water temp was in the low 50s.  Seemed like the bass should have been biting better but we had little luck.  We caught a couple on tubes and three on jerkbaits.  The week before the lake temp was 56 and the bass were biting well.  Perhaps the quick drop in temperature to 50 degrees put them off the feed for awhile.”

 

Editor’s Note: Rich, I experienced the same thing at ConneautLakethat last week in October as well.  Smallmouth were hitting on the 23rd but were completely shut off on October 30 following a 10 degree temperature drop due to that wild Halloween snow storm we had. – Darl

 

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “Even though there are lots of fish in the tribs, the creeks are low and clear making it tough to catch steelhead.  The best times are early morning and late evening.  A single egg or a live minnow is the best for spin fishermen.  Fly fishermen are using Blood Dot, Sucker Spawn and small nymphs to catch a few fish.  The hot bite is at the mouth of the creeks where steelheads are waiting for the next rain to run upstream.  Anglers are casting the lake at the creek mouths with Cleo and KO Wobbling spoons, as well as fishing pink egg sacks and chartreuse/orange Power Bait; they are making some good catches right now – but it’s a little crowded.”

 

David (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run): “The creeks have a ton of steelhead, but fish are not being cooperative – too clear and too low.  But anglers are catching a bunch at the mouths of west side creeks on blue/sliver and green/silver spoons.  Also, I’m hearing reports of brown trout at the mouths of east side creeks, but we are not seeing browns on the west side.”


Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Bob Mohra (Fergies Bait & Tackle): “Panfishing has really taken off this past week especially around the marina docks – lots of bluegills and crappies.  Most fish are being taken on maggots and minnows.  Tipping a Sam’s Ant with a maggot is doing particularly well.”

 

Destin DeMarion (Grove City): “I managed to get out to Wilhelm on November 2 for a few hours in the afternoon.  It started slow, but I figured out where the big ones were and caught them pretty good.  In about one hour I caught multiple 4 and 5 pounders, plus one over six pounds.  All the fish were very fat, putting on a feed for the coming winter.  One of the 5 pounders had a 6” half-alive gizzard shad hanging out of its mouth.  I caught all of them on a Z-man Original Chatterbait.  Most fish hit so hard they knocked slack into my line.  Great day…my best five bass would have come close to 25 pounds.  Hope I can get out again before the snow falls!”

 

Editor’s note: With Wilhelm in the upper 40s, the temperature is right for really big bass.  This is the time of year that I’ve had my best success on largemouth over 6 pounds at this lake on skirted jig with UJ Pork Frog trailer. – Darl

 

 

Ken Smith with fall Shenango crappies (Smith photo)

 

Ken Smith with huge 16” Shenango crappie (Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “ShenangoLakeis producing some nice crappies right now.  The cold nights have dropped the water temperature to an excellent 50 degrees (as of November 4th) and the crappies are in the shallow brush.  I did very well this week – caught over 100 good size crappies in four days.  I kept 30 fish all over 11 inches with the biggest one measuring 16 inches.  Small jigs under a bobber fished at depths of 5 to 8 feet have been working for me.  Meanwhile, minnows fished tight-line style worked for a few of my buddies.  Looking forward to this month – it’s always the best for quality fish here on Shenango.”

 

Editor’s note: I spoke with Ken Smith today, November 7.  He said with theShenangoLakedrawdown picking up, the crappies are falling back to deeper water.  He is now finding them in 14 to 17 feet over brush.  He and a friend caught 35 big ones today. – Darl

 

Shenango River

Laurie Frantz (R&L Tackle): “Several of my customers report good catches of crappies in the Shenango River in the Sandy Beach area below the dam.  Other customers are buying up my blade baits and Rapala Minnows on their way to Pymatuning for walleye.”

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

 

Dave Lefebre with live-bait caught smallmouth (Darl Black © photo)

Darl Black (Cochranton): “Seems all the fishing activity inVenangoCountythis past week has been focused on theAllegheny River– even during the middle of the week right now there are lots of boats on the river.  On Wednesday, November 2, FLW pro Dave Lefebre and I headed to theOilCitypool to begin work on a walleye article for FLW Outdoors about Dave’s late fall live-bait walleye fishing.  As most of you know, Dave is one of the top anglers on the FLW bass tournament trail.  But during the off season, instead of hunting like so many of his counterparts on tour, Dave fishes for walleye in French Creek and the Allegheny, as well as ice fishing for panfish.  Although I had trapped excellent creek bait for our outing, the walleyes were not having any of it on this trip.  ‘We couldn’t catch a walleye because all those trashy smallmouth bass got to it first,’ joked Dave. ‘It isn’t quite cold enough yet.  We need the snow flying to catch those big river walleyes on creek chubs.’  Guess I’ll have to twist Dave’s arm to go fishing again to finish the article!”

 

Ernie Pate with Allegheny smallmouth (Darl Black © photo)

Ernie Pate (Butler) was also fishing the river for smallmouth on November 2nd while we were shooting photos.  He stated that he and various friends have been on the river the last several weeks, scoring bass in the double digits on each trip.  They had been catching fish mainly on tubes, but also swim jigs and drop shot baits.

 

Bill Logan with Allegheny walleye (Darl Black © photo)

Bill Logan (Pleasantville): “While musky fishing on November 2nd, I had several hits on theOilCity pool, landing one small musky.  I caught a very nice walleye while visiting boat-to-boat with Darl Black and Dave Lefebre.  I think Dave really wanted to catch that fish!  I returned to the river on Thursday to catch five bass from 14 to 17 inches.  All fish came on tube jigs.”

 

Louis Letterle (Franklin): “On Thursday, November 3rd, my friend Ken Dudash of Pittsburgh and I fished four different river pools on the Allegheny between Franklin and Brandon.  We landed 5 walleyes and 8 to 10 smallmouth – and lost half a dozen others.  No particular pool produced more than the next, but most of the fish were caught in the afternoon.  All fish were caught on either live creek chubs or hand-tied hair jigs.  Our jig pattern was white/gray and a tan/green which we call Sculpin.  The river still has lots of floating weeds that fouled casts, but conditions are improving.  The highlight of the day was sighting FIVE river otters swimming together.  We see eagles every week, but I’ve never seen river otters outside a zoo!”

 

Lou Letterle with pair of Allegheny walleye (Letterle photo

Dudash with pair of Allegheny smallmouth (Letterle photo)

Group of 5 river otters observed by Letterle and Dudash (Letterle photo)

 

 

 

 

Marilyn Black with Allegheny smallmouth (Darl Black © photo)

Mark Hughes with pair of 4-pound Allegheny smallmouth (Eric Marsh photo)

Marilyn Black (Cochranton): “I had to twist Darl’s arm to take me fishing to the river on November 6th – actually it didn’t take much twisting!  I had to trap my own creek chubs, stone rollers and shiners from a local creek the night before after Darl and Dave used up our supply creek bait earlier in the week.  The bite was slow, but I managed to catch more smallmouth with live bait than Darl did with Trigger X Tubes – however, he caught the majority of bass over 15 inches on jigs.  Darl insists his G.Loomis Bronzeback 822 GLX spinning rod detects extremely light hits in the current that most anglers would miss feeling with ordinary graphite rod.  When I finally picked up my GLX to fish a tube after running out of big creek bait, I certainly could tell the difference.  We ended our four hour trip with 18 to 20 bass – no pike, no walleye and no musky.   There were 10 other boats fishing this stretch of river – and it wasn’t even a tournament!  Later at the ramp, Darl chatted briefly with Eric Marsh (Conneaut Lake) and Mark Hughes (Saegertown); the two of them landed about the same number of bass that we did; their biggest was about 3 pounds.  Eric and Mark had been down the day before, catching about 15 bass including two in the four-pound range.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford, Mercer andVenangoCounties)

 

Dustin Shay with French Creek smallmouth taken on live shiner (Shay photo)

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “The water temperature is just about right for the strong fall walleye bite to start.  But until they kick on strong, I’m still catching numbers of smallmouth bass and northern pike on live bait and hand-tied hair jigs.  On November 3rd, I caught 7 smallmouth and 5 ‘gators (pike) on trapped creek shiners.”

 

CrawfordCountyWaters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “Anglers are catching bunches of walleye on blade baits – particularly the Vib-E – at depths from 10 to 20 feet.  Now with the water cool enough for walleyes to be moving real shallow, the shoreline anglers on the lower end of the lake are catching them on creek chubs.  The local bank fishermen call it ‘can-fishing’ where they cast the live bait out, put the rod in a bank stick, and wrap the line coming off the reel around a brightly painted bottle or can – which acts as a bite indicator.  When the can is knocked over, the angler knows the walleye is running with the bait.  Also, all boats are out of the Jamestown Marina and anglers are now allowed to fish the docks.  They are making good catches of crappies and bluegills.”

 

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “Perch fishing is on fire!!  The Causeway seems to be the hottest spot on my end of the lake.  Minnow on a plain hook, or a crappie rig, are producing.  I’ve been using the American Freshwater Fisherman Lucky Seven Hooks and not having a problem catching 15 to 20 fish in less than an hour’s fishing during the evening.  The new Bowers Launch on theOhioside has had a decent evening perch bite this past two weeks as well.  Also, the point outside of Padanaram Ramp has produced perch on a consistent basis.

 

“Walleye are still being caught with regularity,” continues Hall.  “Cicada and Vibra-Max blades are working for some fishermen.  Large fathead minnows on a jighead or simply a large minnow on a plain hook are working for other anglers.  A 24” walleye was reported from the Spillway this past week.  Numerous guys are still pulling worm harnesses with limited success.  But where are the crappies?  Not much has been reported to the shop.  I heard through a third party that a gentleman caught a few crappies north of the Spillway in about 8 feet of water.”

 

Conneaut Lake

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “I talked with two guys that fishedConneautLakeon Saturday, November 5.  They only caught two small northern pike, two perch and two bluegills.  Claimed they marked fish on the sonar all day – but with most marks were in 40 to 50 feet.”

 

Gail Peterson (Meadville) fished Conneaut Lake for a couple hours on the afternoon of October 6th, attempting to catch a big smallmouth bass.  He didn’t have a single hook up with smallmouth, settling for several largemouth bass in the two pound range.

 

Tamarack Lake

Chuck Papinchak (Cochranton): “The only place I have been fishing the past two weeks has been Tamarack, fishing from shore.  Keeper-size crappies and bluegills are biting real-good on minnows below a slip bobber.  We are even picking up a few bass in the 12 to 14-inch range on minnows.  One of my friends had his kids out there Sunday with us, and it was constant action – we had trouble keeping the hooks baited.”

 

Woodcock Lake

John Ensworth (John’s Bait & Tackle): “Customers have slowed down this week.  The hottest news I received this week was from customers buying worms and maggots to fish walleyes at Woodcock.  I thought it was odd they were using maggots to catch walleye, but apparently they were tipping jigs with the maggots or pieces of nightcrawler to lure the ‘eyes.”

 

Gamma Salutes

The photo contributor drawn this week for a spool of Gamma Line is Rich Conlon of Butler.  Gamma Line is available locally at the following Weekly Fishing Report tackle shops: CDS inGrove City; Poor Richards inErie, Espyville Outdoors in Espyville and John’s Bait Shop inMeadville.

 

Weekly Drawing

The report contributor drawn for a Yum/PRADCO bait pack for this week is Lou Letterle.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

Send information on your fishing clinics, seminars, fishing club meetings, shows, ice fishing contests and more to darlblack@windstream.net for posting on Calendar of Events.

 

Monthly          Free Fly-Tying Classes                               814-590-1366

Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch (At the Bank Mall),Meadville

2nd Tuesday of each month;6 PM to 7:30 PM

 

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

 

Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

No Comments

Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 10-31-11

Happy Halloween – Pro angler Edwin Evers gets a jolt out of Halloween (Photo-shopped by Lawrence Taylor)

Happy Halloween!

Bass Pro Edwin Evers gets a jolt out of Halloween – image was photo-shopped by Lawrence Taylor

 

 

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “Walleye, walleye, walleye!  Any one who knows anything about Pymatuning walleye in the fall is having a field day.  During mid-day, boat anglers are catching walleyes over channel drops with jigs and blade baits; the purple/white VibE blade bait has been my number one seller.  Shoreline fishermen are catching ‘eye on live chubs and shiners where deeper water swings close to shore.  After sunset, walleyes are moving very shallow to feed on small minnows and late-season bluegill fry – try throwing small stickbaits.  Crappies are being caught both deep and moderately shallow with live minnows and small jigs.  If you can find brushpiles in the bays about 6’ to 10’ deep, there should be crappies on it.  The perch bite on the lower end of the lake has slowed down.  No muskies reported.”

 

October crappies (Chris Hall photo)

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “The perch fishing has been great on the upper end of the lake.  Perch in the 10” to 12” are common right now.  However, anglers are reporting that the perch do not seemed to be schooled up tight yet.  I was out three days last week fishing from shore and caught perch every day.  Not a fish under 11 inches!  Walleyes are being caught at the Spillway and Causeway.  Various methods seem to b working, including a live minnow on a #4 hook, or a blade bait.”

 

 

Marilyn Black with Conneaut Lake smallmouth (© Darl Black)

 

Dale Black with Conneaut white bass. (© Darl Black)

Conneaut Lake

Darl Black (Cochranton): “ConneautLakehas been unusually difficult this fall – at least for me.  I fish Conneaut in the fall primarily for big smallmouth – those 4 to 6-pounders.  Three weeks ago, high winds prevented us from getting on the lake.  One week ago, on October 22nd, Marilyn and I fished Conneaut with marginal success.  The water temperature was still 57-60 degrees – warm for latter part of October.  We (I should say Marilyn) landed several smallmouth with the largest going four pounds along with a few small northern pike, largemouth and a single white bass.  The anticipated lipless crankbait did not materialize; most of the fish that day were taken on live creek chubs.  Flash forward a week…on October 30th I fished Conneaut with Dale Black.  With a bucket of creek chubs and stone rollers as back-up just in case, we had high hopes of big smallies on lipless cranks, jigs, spinnerbaits, tubes, blade baits or hair jigs.  In five hours of fishing shallow and deep on fall smallmouth spots, not one brown fish.  Not even a single northern pike pick up on a live chub.  The only fish caught was a single white bass on a Jimmy D River Bug hair jig.  The lake temperature had dropped 10 degrees in one week to 47-50 degrees – a good range but perhaps the temp dropped a little too quickly.  Why fish were not feeding at Conneaut – not even pike – is puzzling, especially since Scott Kinard was catching smallmouth the same day only 15 miles away on Woodcock.”

Mike Horrobin (CLTackle.com): “While fly casting from shore ofConneautLakeon Saturday, I caught several nice-size bluegills in the shallows.  Not a lot, but a lot of fun!”

 

Grady Codd with Conneaut Lake pike (Codd photo)

Grady Codd (Pittsburgharea) has made couple trips to ConneautLakein recent weeks.  Among other fish, he caught a 4 pound smallmouth on a 15-foot ledge and a nice northern pike around a dock.  Both big fish were taken on a Strike King Series 5xd crankbait.  (Photo #5)

 


smallmouth (Scott Kinard photo)

close-up (Kinard photo)

Scott Kinard (Butler): Scott and Mike Doerflinger fished Woodcock for about 5 hours on Sunday, October 30th, landing six smallmouths between 4.75 and 5.5 pounds.  “We lost five others that were around the same size.  Also hooked and lost a decent musky and caught two walleye.  The water temperature in most lakes is now in the mid 40s and falling.  In lakes with smallmouth, the fish are grouping-up on ledges and chasing bait in wolf packs throughout the day.  Drop-shots, tubes and All-Terrain Tackle Jigs have been working for us.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait –Erie): “PIB fishing this past week was all about the big crappies being taken in protected areas, particularlyMarinaLakeandMiseryBay.  Crappies are running larger than average.  Most are being taken on minnows, jigs tipped with a minnow or tube jig.  Tube jigs are particularly hot right now.  I’m dong good with anything in a gold color.  Some yellow perch were also reported of the boat ramp inMarianLakeand North Pier.  Northern pike are biting in MiseryBay.”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “It was a great weekend for steelhead fishing, even though the water was somewhat low and clear.  Lots of fish in the streams and lots of anglers.  Anglers were catching fish on single eggs and emerald shiners in low water.  Fly fishermen are scoring with sucker spawn in light colors like peach, light orange, pink and pale yellow.  Black or brown nymphs and Wooly Buggers are catching fish.  Early morning and dusk hours are best.  Fish are spooky during mid day in the clear water.  Biggest fish I saw this week was an 11 pounder.  Things are looking good for this coming week – no big rain to blow out the creeks, although light showers should help us out.”

 

Mike Tome (B.A.C. Bait –Trout Run): “It’s our usual story – low and clear.  Fish moved in on previous high water, we get two days of excellent fishing as streams fall, and then it’s low and clear.  What ever you use, go small and go light in color – single eggs, single minnow, light sucker spawn.  Our exclusive P-Flash fly is hot – it’s a great imitation of an emerald shiner.  At the creek mouths on the lake shore, Power Bait, skein and blue/chrome spoons are producing.”

Erie trib steelhead (Ed Lawrence photo)

 

Ed Lawrence (Corry) provided a picture of a couple nice steelhead he caught last week from one of the tributaries.  A third fish was caught and release.  Said he had his hands full with two fish and his rod, getting out of the creek up a steep hill.

 

 

 

 

Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Al Moore (Cochranton): “I’ve been fishing Wilhelm this week (October 23-27), and catching 3 to 5 bass each time out.  Nothing real big – 17.5 to 19.5 inch range.  Caught most of my fish this week on Berkley Chigger Craw, plus some on the chrome & chartreuse Terminator Spinnerbait – fished at 6 to 8 feet.”

 

Ernie Pate with two Lake Wilhelm pig largemouth (Kinard photo)

Scott Kinard (Butler): “After fishing Wilhelm in the heavy rain on Sunday, October 16, Ernie Pate and I headed back there on the 17th.  Seeing positive signs on Sunday pointing towards a near future feast, I thought the sunny skies on Monday could activate the schools of big bass.  Although we managed to catch about 10 very nice largemouths up to 5.5 pounds, we were disappointed with the numbers.  We had quite a few short strikes.  No one particular pattern or depth or type of cover prevailed.  The downside is that this lake has been fishing quite difficult this year for big numbers and may translate into a slow fall bite as well.  We caught our largemouth on crankbaits, plastics and All-Terrain Tackle Jigs.

 

 

Shenango crappies and bluegills (Ken Smith photo)

 

Ken Smith with big Shenango crappies (Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “The crappie bite was good at Shenango this past week.  Black crappies are shallow on lay-downs and brushpiles.  Find baitfish cruising the shallows and you’ll find the crappie close by.  Jig-n-bobber worked best for me, but a couple friends caught them on minnows.  Also, there are some very nice bluegills in the same spots as crappies.”

 

 

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey reminds anglers that fall stocking of trout is producing action on the special reg section of Neshannock.  Water flow is good.

 

Venango County Waters

 

 

Image of things to come in November – Allegheny walleye (© Darl Black)

Allegheny River

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Wholesale): “All my river fishermen are out hunting right now.  With higher water and some color right now, the river should be primed for the fall walleye bite – but no one has stopped with a report ‘cause they are hunting.”

 

Kahle Lake

Dale Black (OilCity): “I have not made it over yet, butKahleLakeusually fishes very well for big largemouth bass into the fall.  I would like to make it over this week or next.”

 

Justus Lake

No reports, but the fall stocking of trout should be offering an excellent bite right now.

 

Oil Creek

Mike Laskowski (Oil Creek Outfitters): “The recent stocking of rainbows are keeping the streamer fishermen busy.  Our custom tied Triple Threat Streamer is hot, as well as the Wooly Bugger in dark colors.  LittleSandyis giving up browns in addition to rainbows.  Both stocked stream sections – Oil Creek and Little Sandy – are catch-and-release only.”

 

Bill Logan (Pleasantville): “Oil Creek’s delayed harvest areas are producing beautiful stocked rainbows.  They are 12” to 15”.  With only an hour to fish one warm day last week, I caught 6 trout on a size 12 olive hot beaded bugger.”

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford, Mercer andVenangoCounties)

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “The walleye bite on the creek is firing up.  I’ve been catching walleye mid-day from11 AMto2 PMon my had-tied hair jigs tipped with either soft plastic grub or live minnow.  Walleye are running from 3 to 5 pounds with the better bite fromMeadvillesouth toCarlton.  North of Meadville, the water is still too clear.  Last week I also caught several smallmouth in the 3 to 4 pound range from the Creek in the vicinity ofMeadville; they were caught on my hand-tied jigs.”

 

Gamma Salutes

Photo drawing: The Gamma Salute goes out to Grady Codd for his image of aConneautLakenorthern pike; watch for your spool of Gamma line.

 

Weekly Drawing

Contributor drawing: The final October Road Runner package goes to Scott Kinard.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Nov 5              Steelhead Fishing Contest (in conjunction with Steelhead Expo)

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

 

Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

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Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 10-17-11

News

-The bad news this week was all the rain, cold and wind which made fishing almost impossible or at very least, plain miserable.  The good news is we needed the rain to put water in the Allegheny, French Creek andErietributary streams and cold temperatures to cool inland lake waters down into the 50s.

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford andVenangoCounties)

Ed Lawrence’s French Creek walleye (Lawrence photo)

 

Ed Lawrence (Corry) reports catching a couple walleyes from French Creek on a ¼-ounce curly tail jig on October 11 before the heavy rains started.  His largest one was about 2.5 pounds.  He was only out for ½ an hour before work, but felt certain he could have caught more if he had the time.   Editor’s note: Looking at French Creek right now, it will be several days before anglers will be able to enjoy fishing the stream.

 

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “Before the rains came this week, my brother Boone Shay caught several walleyes on live creek chubs.  I didn’t fish the creek this week.”

 

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “The fishermen who braved the weather over the weekend actually caught fish!  Jigging blade baits (Heddon Sonars, Vibra-Max and Reef Runner Cicadas) around the bridges on the causeways produced numerous walleyes.  A limit of nice ‘eye was reported on Thursday – nothing smaller than 18 inches.  The same angler also was fishing a minnow on a slip bobber at the same spot, catching crappies at the same time.”

 

Hall continues: “The perch fishing has picked up some, with fish in the 9- to 11-inch range taken near Espyville boat launch.  Walleyes were picked up in the area north of Snodgrass and south of Orchard – mostly trolling Bomber Long A and Smithwick minnow baits.  Some success was reported by several anglers fishing from boats between Bridge 20 and the Spillway; they were using black/green Beetle Spins.  Hopefully the weather will get straightened out so everyone can get out and catch some nice fall walleye!”

.

Fish Commission Hatchery at Linesville. The viewing silo in the visitors’ center is filled with fish, including a huge flathead catfish perhaps weighing in excess of 30 pounds and reportedly taken from Pymatuning Lake; also trophy-size crappie and a hybrid striper – all from Pymatuning. (Darl Black © Photo)

Richter’s General Store reports good catches of walleyes on VibE blades on the south end of the lake.  Still catching a few crappies but they seem to be running small right now.  The hottest news is the exceptional perch fishing in the south end of Pymatuning with lots of 12-inch fish.

 

Conneaut Lake

Steve Hughes (Clarion) fished a few hours on Conneaut during Saturday’s high wind and rain.  It was not a pleasant outing, and he could only fish a small area protected from the wind.  When I talked with him by phone in the mid afternoon, he had caught several small largemouth bass by drop-shotting Houdini Worms but no quality fish.

 

Tamarack Lake

John Ensworth (John’s Bait Shop): “Several customers were in on Friday buying lots of minnows for crappie fishing on Tamarack.  They said the fishing is picking up.”

 

Woodcock Creek

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “Russ Chaney and I had a pretty interesting day on Woodcock Creek fishing for hold-over trout.  We caught a number of nice keepers on creek bait we had trapped.  We took small dace minnow, squished them a little bit between our fingers and then floated the injured baitfish through the riffles into dark shadow areas.  Anglers would be surprised how many hold-over trout are in a stream.”

 

Canadohta Lake

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “On October 10, I fished the north end of Canadohta.  I was entertained by musky fishermen in a boat that were repeatedly having a musky follow their lures to the boat.  Those musky fishermen must have done 1,000 ‘figure 8s’ along the gunnels of the boat trying to get the fish to strike.  You’ve got to give them an ‘A’ for effort.  A man at the ramp removing pontoon boats for summer residents mentioned a 53” musky was caught recently.  As for me, I caught three largemouth bass on a Senko from around shore grass and pads.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. BaitErieStore): “The high winds and waves killed any fishing on the Bay or in theLakefor the past several days.  Still blowing up here this morning (October 17); customers can’t even fish the North Pier.  Winds are to continue for several days.”

 

Destin DeMarion with PIB smallmouth (DeMarion photo)

Destin DeMarion (Grove City): “I managed to get out on PIB on October 13.  We picked up about a dozen largemouth bass on an assortment of lures – Kopper’s Live Target Frogs, Santone Lures Spinnerbaits, Reaction Innovation Sweet Beaver on drop-shot rig, and even on fish on tube.  Nothing really big, mostly two pounders – but one going about 3 pounds.  But when we fished the edge of the North Pier, I managed to drop-shot a pair of smallmouth bass in the 4 to 5-pound range.

 

Lake Erie

Waves over the weekend were in excess of 14 feet, and rough seas will continue through mid week.

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “Streams were blown out Saturday, but are now receding.  Fishing should pick up today (Monday) and hopefully get some good catches in until ½ inch of rain comes in on Tuesday night.  Rain to continue through Thursday – may ruin the weekend fishing.  Fish are being taken on Power Bait, Sucker Spawn flies, skein and egg sacks.  The biggest steelhead we weighed so far was a 14.5 pounder, but there were a good number of 13 pounders too.”

 

Mike Tome (B.A.C. Trout Run Store): “There were lots of fish in the lower sections of the tribs so they should be moving way upstream with this high water.

Walnut should be fishable by this afternoon (Monday) and Elk Creek should be down by Tuesday.  What’s been working?  In the dingy water go to bigger baits – black Wooly Bugger, brighter Sucker Spawn, and skein.  When the water drops and clears, go smaller and less bold in color – single eggs, light color Sucker Spawn, minnows.  One of the hottest flies going is only available at our store, created and tied by one of our former employees – the P-Flash minnow imitator.  If the expected rain mid week isn’t too heavy and the streams don’t get blown out, we might have a great weekend of steelheading, but it’s too early to tell.”

John Hall’s steelhead (Hall photo)

John Hall (Erie) reported that west side creeks were high and stained on Friday night but Twenty Mile was still gin clear at8 PMwith decent number of fish between the lake and Route 5.  Then the serious rains came on Saturday which pushed his fishing trip back to Sunday.  “Elk Creek was fishable on Sunday, October 16 – barely.  Attached is a picture of one hen I landed.  Not real big but a nice fish.  Caught it on upper Elk.  I was fishing solo today so no smiling faces to accompany the catch!”  (See Photo #4)

 

Ed Lawrence with a 7.5 pound steelhead (Lawrence photo)

Ed Lawrence (Corry): “I went to Twenty Mile Creek on Wednesday, October 12.  I hooked a few steelheads but landed only one – it was 7-1/2 pounds and 26 inches in length.  Fish were striking both nightcrawlers and Wooly Buggers.”  (See Photo #5)

 

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “Last week I checked the Erie East Side tribs, although I did not fish personally.  Orchard Beach Creek (nursery waters) had been stocked with browns.  At Sixteen Mile Creek I watched one angler catch and release a nice steelhead on sucker spawn pattern, and another angler foul hook a small brown on a fly; another angler had 3 trout on a stringer at the mouth of the creek.  At Twelve Mile Creek at the Rt. 5 Bridge, I watched an angler take a medium steelhead on a Wooly Bugger.  An angler had 3 fish on a stringer at the mouth of Four Mile Creek and I observed fish at the base of the fish ladder.  Overall, there were many nice fish in the lower end ofEast Sidetributaries.”

 

Mercer County Waters

 

 

Scott Kinard with Wilhelm largemouth (Kinard photo)

Lake Wilhelm

Scott Kinard (Butler): “I took a short trip to Wilhelm on Sunday for about 4 hours.  Despite the constant rain and windy conditions, I landed 5 largemouths up to 4.5 pounds.  Although not the best day for numbers, I had several other hits but could not get them to commit to a bait.  With the water temperature approaching 55 degrees, a stable weather day could activate the lake for the fall bite.  I caught my fish on crankbaits, soft plastics and All-Terrain Tackle Jigs.”

 

Al Moore (Cochranton): “I’ve gone to Wilhelm several times in the past week without much success – usually one bass per trip and no size.  In frustration of the week’s outcome, I went again on Sunday, October 16.  I headed up the lake into the ‘sticks’ (electric motor only area).  Arriving at the cover, I immediately got a hit but missed the fish.  I threw back at the log, felt a strike, set the hook and broke off the fish.  I continued fishing the sticks, ending up with five largemouths in the boat.  All were taken on a black-n-red fleck Berkley Chigger Craw.  Nice day despite the rain.”

 

Destin DeMarion (Grove City): “I went to Wilhelm with a buddy on Wednesday, October 12.  We caught a dozen bass on Kopper’s Live Target Frogs, Trigger X Flappin’ Bugs and Strike King KVD 2.5s”

 

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “ShenangoLakecrappies were biting strong this week. On both Tuesday and Wednesday, I could have kept a limit of fish, but only kept 20 for a friend’s family fish fry.  I caught most of my fish this week by casting a jig-n-bobber to shoreline blow-downs.  Most crappies were over 9 inches and dominated by blacks.  The ones I kept were white and over 10 inches.  Sorry, no picture this week!”

 

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “Last week I fished the east arm ofShenangoLakefor the first time this year.  I caught a 3-pound smallmouth bass, a 3.5-pound largemouth bass and a 25-inch northern pike.  I’ve got to remember a camera on my fishing adventures!  I observed several crappie fishermen on the lake, and noticed schools of baitfish and apparent crappies on the fish finder but had not brought a crappie outfit – darn.”

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Fly Shop): “Last Tuesday, October 4, we had 700 trout stocked behind the shop and several hundred yards downstream from the bridge in town.  Anglers report fishing has been pretty good, so stop by and wet a line!  Our new guide Damon Newpher says the steelhead fishing is as good as it gets right now.  But you had better hurry to book because space is limited.  (Contact the shop’s website for more information)  We still have a limited supply of select Orvis, Winston and Sage rods at 15% to 25% off.  Stop in, call the shop or email me while the supply lasts.”

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Wholesale & CLTackle.com): “They are getting a few walleyes using live bait, but not much fishing activity over weekend due to weather.”

 

Steve Hughes (Clarion) with the FOPRiverBass Tournament report for Sunday, October 16: “The river came up two feet since Friday when I was last out and turned muddy.  Mark Hughes (Saegertown) and Wade Adams (Tidioute) won the tournament with just over 16 pounds.  All fish were caught on spinnerbaits and chatterbaits.  I started deep and caught a few small ones, then moved over a shallow flat and caught a small limit on a Booyah Boogee Bait.”

 

Steve Chaconas with Allegheny River smallmouth (Darl Black © Photo)

Dale Black with Allegheny River smallmouth (Darl Black © Photo)

Darl Black (Cochranton): “On Friday, October 14, I hosted an outdoor writer’s event on the Allegheny Riveron behalf of Oil Region Alliance.  It was a windy, wet and tough day of fishing.  River was still low and clear with water temperature of 61 degrees.  Five anglers in three boats fished out of Franklinramp in the morning without catching a smallmouth over 15 inches.  Several small ones were caught by Steve Hughes (Clarion) drop-shotting in a deep pool.  After lunch, we moved up river to the OilCityramp.  Fishing alone, I could only put two smallmouths and one pike in the boat.  Steve Hughes and writer Larry Claypool (East Liverpool, OH) came up a good number of sub-legal smallies by drop-shotting Yum Dingers.  However, late in the day, Dale Black and writer Steve Chaconas (Alexandria, VA) figured out the smallmouth; in short order they both had a limit of fish on shad-colored Yum Houdini Shads – saving the day for a photo shoot undertaken between rain showers!”

 

 

 

 

Lou Letterle with Allegheny River pike (Letterle photo)

Letterle with Allegheny River smallmouth (Letterle photo)

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “Good seeing you on the river on Friday.  Well, I don’t know how you guys did, but I had to work for my fish.  During the morning hours, I only managed to land a pike, taken on a 4-inch live creek chub.  Most of my casts, as well as my jet water intake were continuously fouled by weeds and leaves.  The only area that I could find that was relatively free of weeds was in the middle of the river.  So I ended up fishing several mid-river pools and finished the day with 9 or 10 smallmouth – but no walleye.  Some of the bass were caught on a tube jig, but most were caught on live creek chubs.”

Venango Trout Streams

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Wholesale): “The streams like Oil Creek with the fall trout stocking are getting some play, although it was slow with the bad weather weekend.  Actually, the bad weather was good for the fly-tying business since guys didn’t want to fish in the rain and wind.”

 

Gamma Salutes

The winner of the spool of Gamma Line this week is John Hall of Erie.  Locally, Gamma Line is available at Poor Richards Bait, John’s Bait Shop, Espyville Outdoors and Consumer Discount Sports (CDS).

 

Weekly Drawing

The winner of the Road Runner Lure pack for October 17 is Ed Lawrence of Corry.  Your prize will be shipped direct from TTI-Blakemore.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Nov 5              Steelhead Fishing Contest (in conjunction with Steelhead Expo)

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

 

 Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

, , , , ,

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Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 10-10-11

News

Fishing Gets Hotter as Temperatures Get Cooler: Prior to our 3 day heat wave this past weekend, everything seemed on track for a great October.  But that high-pressure, bluebird skies, 80-dgree temps and no rain soured the bite for many anglers that fish only on weekends.  However, the weather is about to change again.  Looks like rain will move into the area about Wednesday along with cooler temperatures – and should last through the weekend.  If Erie shoreline gets the promised rain, the coming weekend could be one of the best of the year for steelhead. Lake Erieperch have moved out deeper, but are still being caught in 80 feet – and they are getting big ones! Lake Eriesmallmouths are moving shallow with some impressive catches made this past week.  Pymatuning is on fire with a walleye bite right now.  With rain, expect French Creek and theAllegheny Riverto fire up for bass and walleye.  Fall trout stocking on streams have Oil Creek and Neshannock back in the groove, and trout fishing should also be great on Justus Lake.

REPORTERS NEEDED:

Anyone may send their angling success stories to the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report – as long as the fishing is done on any lake, river or stream in Erie, Crawford, Mercer or Venango counties.  Photos (attached in jpg file format) are welcome.  We only need a couple sentences with the facts of your catch or your observations – just keep it accurate.  Go ahead and name brand name lures you are using.  Your name may be drawn for a tackle prize.  Send to darlblack@windstream.net.

Venango County Waters

Allegheny River

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Wholesale Tackle): “Over the weekend a lot of people enjoyed the beautiful weather on the river, but fish-catching reports were not stellar.  The best days are yet to come this fall.”

 

Dale Black (OilCity): “Chris Wolfgong and I fished the Allegheny on Saturday for a good part of the day.  We fished fromOilCitynorth almost to Tionesta.  The river has dropped and returned to the super clear status of summer.  Not good for fall fishing.  Water temperature actually went up a couple degrees due to the chain of 80-degree days.  I hit bottom multiple times, but nothing was damaged on the River Pro.  We only boated three smallmouth bass.  It was as tough as I have ever seen it this time of year!  But rain is in the forecast!”

 

Kahle Lake

No report, but in coming weeks expect a good perch bite and some big largemouth bass to be taken.

 

Justus Lake

No report, but trout should be shallow along the shoreline, and those mysterious Justus muskies may surprise you.

 

Rainbow trout from Oil Creek (Denny Beggs photo)

Oil Creek

Dennis Beggs (OilCity): “I caught and released 5 nice rainbow trout from Oil Creek on Thursday, October 6, using my fly rod.”

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford and Venango Counties)

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “I’ve been archery hunting for the past two weeks instead of fishing.  From what I hear from friends, French Creek fishermen are only catching smallmouth right now; however, one of my buddy scored a couple walleye on the creek last week with live bait.  The creek is low and clear – great for getting creek bait but not great for catching walleye right now.  A little water and a drop in water temp will turn the walleye on.”

 

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “Anglers had a very good weekend on Pymatuning with lots of crappie and walleye, plus a pick-up on the perch bite.  Lots of guys were fishing live bait for walleye, but the best catches were made with Sonars and other blade baits in 12 to 17-feet of water.  Some fishermen were catching crappies on channel edge stumps, while other anglers were getting them around deep docks.  Lots and lots of perch reported – some decent size.  No musky that I heard about.”

 

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “Yellow perch were being caught off the causeway on pieces of nightcrawlers fished on the bottom.  There has a slow-down in the crappie catches from the north end of the lake.  I’m told by customers that more walleyes are being caught north of Snodgrass this past week – crankbaits seem to be working.”

 

Norman Renwick (Jamestown Boat Livery): “The walleye bite is going strong.  Heddon Sonars are getting limit after limit of ‘eye.”

Pymatuning crappie-plus-more catch (Ken Smith photo)

 

Ken Smith (Sharon): “On Friday, October 7, I fished the Jamestownarea of Pymatuning.  The bite started slow but picked up around 9 AM.  I kept more than 30 crappies, bluegills, yellow perch and one 15” smallmouth.  Most of the crappies were 11 inches, and few were up to 13 inches.  The new Tripletail soft plastic jig body from MicroSpoon took almost all my catch; I fished them on a 1/8-ounce jighead.  The fish really thumped the jig.”

 

 

 

 

Chad Templin with 4 lb Conneaut Lake smallmouth (Templin photo)

 

Chad Templin with 7.2 lb. Conneaut Lake largemouth (Templin photo)

Conneaut Lake

Chad Templin (Meadville): “The fishing at ConneautLakehas been slow for bass the last couple weeks.  The water temperature is still in the mid 60s, which is high for this time of year.  I got a nice 4-pound smallmouth on a BS Popper, and a monster 7-pound largemouth on a BS Jig.  I also managed to catch a rare Conneaut Lake musky.  My fishing buddies and I have caught quite a few nice pike recently, and if someone wanted to target them it wouldn’t be hard to catch a daily limit while culling dozens of smaller fish.”

 

 

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “I fished Conneaut Lake with Darl Black on Saturday morning for a couple hours and all I caught was a bluegill!  Bass seemed to be shut down completely; we fished swimbaits deep, crankbaits on weedlines and topwater over tops of weeds and over gravel bars without a strike.  I did observe an anchored boat with anglers catching crappies.”

 

 

Marilyn Black with Conneaut Marsh crappie (Darl Black © photo)

Conneaut Marsh

Marilyn Black (Cochranton): “Darl and I went toGenevadam on the Conneaut Marsh on Sunday morning for about an hour.  Using small creek minnows trapped over night in a stream, we caught a number of crappies from an eddy right below the dam.”

 

Chuck Papinchak (Cochranton) called in a report Monday morning from the Custad’s dam on the Conneaut Marsh.  He and a friend were catching keeper-size crappie on small minnows below the dam.

 

Woodcock Lake

No report, but as soon as this heat wave ends, look for smallmouth bass and musky to be hitting at Woodcock.  A little later in the fall, anticipate walleye and crappies in deep water.

 

Canadohta Lake

No report, but with coming cold front, you might want to consider musky fishing at Canadohta.

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait): “Anglers are catching perch in 80 feet of water out in theLake– some perch are 14 inches!   Customers report perch and smallmouth bass off the North Pier.  Nice crappies are coming fromMarinaLake.  And finally I have reports of steelhead actually being caught in the Bay instead of just seen jumping; Waterworks area is a good bet.”

 

Dave Lefebre with PIB crappies (Darl Black © photo)

Dave Lefebre with PIB largemouth bass (Darl Black © photo)

Dave Lefebre: (note to outdoor writers listing hometown – Dave recently moved to Harbor Creek): “Friday, October 7, while working on photos with Darl Black at PIB, we boated 30-some largemouth bass from one small area in deep water.  All fish were taken on either a 5-1/2” paddle tail swimbait on a 3/4-ounce head or a soft plastic finesse minnow on 1/2-ounce Scrounger Head.  The largemouth weren’t giants, with the biggest one just under 3 pounds.  It seems early for them to be in these areas.  In shallower water, we also caught a few very nice crappies on chartreuse Jimmy D’s Panfish Jigs.  We considered going out to deepwater for perch, but ran out of time.”

 

 

Ernie Pate with pig Erie smallmouth bass (Scott Kinard photo)

Lake Erie

Scott Kinard (Butler): “Ernie Pate and I took a trip toLake Erieon Saturday, October 8.  We boated 22Eriepig smallmouth all in the 3-3/4 to 5-pound range.  The bite is starting to get very good now with the fall cool down.  Water temp is around 63 degrees and the bite should only get better in the coming weeks as the temperature continues to drop.  Beautiful weather and big water makes for a great day.   Drop-shots, tubes and jerkbaits are working.  Smallmouth bass are working shallower on breaklines.  Everything is focused around baitfish movement this time of year.”

 

 

Dave Lefebre went perch fishing on Saturday, straight north of thePeninsulain 80 feet of water.  He brought back 15 giant perch, up to almost 16 inches.  At the ramp, a couple anglers told him they had caught and released over a 100 smallmouth on jerkbaits in the last several days, fishing east of PIB.

 

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “I have not had a report of walleyes in several weeks; they have migrated back west.  However, the perch bit is still going strong out in 70 to 80 feet of water.”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

 

Andy (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run): “We have not had any rain in well over a week.  The tributaries are low and clear.  No one is catching steelhead in the creek except some fly-fishermen.  You can fish the creek mouths along the lakeshore if you don’t mind crowds; they are catching steelhead on Power Bait and spoons.  We need rain!”

 

Jeff Staff (Poor Richards): “Steelheads have reached the Legion Hole on Elk Creek and Rout 5 on Walnut Creekin good numbers; scattered fish are further inland.  With the streams low and clear, the best fishing is very early or very late in the day; minnows and single eggs are working best.  Fly fishermen are getting them on Sucker Spawn in light colors.  On the lakeshore near stream mouths, the hot baits are Little Cleo and KO Wobblers spoons in either chrome & green or chrome & blue, plus Berkley Power Bait.  Some anglers are report success on orange stickbaits, like a Rapala Minnow.”

 

Terry Farrell (Hook, Line & Stitch): “A customer informed me that he and another friend caught and released a total of 18 steelheads on Walnut and Elk Creeks this past weekend.  They were using Sucker Spawn and a Stonefly wet fly.  They watched hundreds of steelhead move upstream past them.”

 

Bill Logan (Pleasantville): “I hooked two steelheads on Twenty Mile Creek on Monday.  One I landed was dumb luck.  I stuck the rod under my arm to dig out a sinker; with the streamer hanging in the current, the steelhead hit and hooked itself!”

 

Lake LeBoeuf

No reports, but this should be the best time for crappie on this small lake.

 

Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Bob Mohra (Fergies Bait): “Not much angler activity going at Wilhelm this past weekend.  A few guys are fishing the upper causeway and catching some bluegills.  Everyone seems to be fishing elsewhere right now.”

 

 

Shenango crappie catch (Ken Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “I fished ShenangoLakethis past Wednesday and Thursday.  I did good both days.  The crappies were a little deeper than last week but still biting aggressively.  I used a MicroSpoon Tripletail body on a 1/16-ounce Bobby Garland MoGlo jighead.  I paired it up with 6-pound Gamma Line.  The fish could not resist it.  I caught 35 crappies on Wednesday and over 70 fish on Thursday.  I released all but 8 crappies that I gave to John, the park manager.  You can’t go wrong fishing the bridges right now.

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Fly Shop) says the fall stocking as stirred trout fishing interest once again in Neshannock.  Fishing should be good for several weeks unless the rains muddy the water.

 

Gamma Salutes

Denny Beggs of Franklin was drawn as this week’s winner of a spool of Gamma Line – four-pound gold is the flavor of the month.

 

Weekly Drawing

This week’s Road Runner Crappie package goes to Ken Smith of Sharon.  These lures are perfect for Ken, who is one of the top crappie fishermen in the area.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Oct 16            Allegheny RiverBass Team Tournament #2

$100 per team; for info contact Eric Heil lt.heil@yahoo.com

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Nov 5              Steelhead Fishing Contest (in conjunction with Steelhead Expo)

Go to www.steelheadexpo.com for more information

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

Sponsored by: PA Great Lakes Region

GAMMA Fishing Line (now owned by Black Knight Industries of Oil City)

 

Connect to all counties at www.PaGreatLakes.com

–       Crawford County Convention &Visitors Bureau at www.visitcrawford.org

–       VisitErie at www.visiterie.com

–       VisitMercerCountyPA at www.visitmercercountypa.com

–       Oil Region Alliance at www.oilregion.org

 

 Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

No Comments

Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 10-3-11

News

–       Fantastic Fall Fishing is NOW!  October and November are two of the best months for fishing inNorthwest Pennsylvania.  From bluegill to musky, every panfish and gamefish species is putting on the feedbag.  Steelhead trout are in theErie tribs; the strongest walleye bite of year is happening at Pymatuning and theAllegheny River plus French Creek system.  Absolutely the best trophy smallmouth bass opportunities will take place in several area lakes during the next couple months.  Don’t miss out – Go Fish!

–       Road Runner Month – September was Rapala Group rewards and those baits have ‘gone fishing.’  For contributor names drawn during October, TTI-Blakemore will ship direct to you a surprise package of Road Runner lures and hooks plus a RR cap.  Go Fish!

–       Last tournament hurrah!  In the last week or two, a handful of the regular Fishing Report contributors have been traveling to other areas to fish championship events.  Steve Hughes (Clarion) fished an event at Oneida Lake in New York; no word on how he did.  Scott Kinard (Butler) took a 2nd at the Basscasters End-of-Year tournament this past week on Lake Arthur.  Daniel Gray (Butler) won the TBF Mid Atlantic Divisional for Maryland at Buggs Island on September 21-23. Also, this past week, Danny Jones (North East) participated in the American Bass Angler Bassmaster Weekend Series on Lake Erie at Buffalo.  On October 1, FLW Pro Dave Lefebre (Union City) finished 4th in the final Everstart event on the Potomac River.  The last area open tournament is later this month on theAllegheny River – check the Calendar for details.  Now that tournament season is winding down, we hope to see some reports from these anglers regarding their local outings in Northwest Pennsylvania.

 

Mercer County Waters

 

 

The bluegill bite at Wilhelm is now on the Sheakleyville causeway (Darl Black © photo)

Lake Wilhelm

With water temperature dropping and vegetation dying in the upper part ofLakeWilhelm, anglers fishing from the Sheakleyville Causeway are beginning to catch nice bluegill.  This annual bite will continue for several weeks.  You’ll see cars pulled off on the causeway all day long, but late afternoon is typically the best fishing.  On a good day, shoreline fishermen can fill out their limit of panfish in a couple hours of fishing.  A small jig tipped with a larva (wax worm, mealworm, or maggot) and suspended 18- to 36-inches below a bobber is the ticket.

 

Shenango Lake

Al Moore (Cochranton): “The Mercer County Bassmasters held our last tournament of the season on Shenango Lake on Sunday, October 2.  It was a wet, cloudy and cold day for sure…a good day for flipping.  Bass were on hardwood.   My best bait was a Berkley Chigger Craw in black-n-blue.  I only landed two keepers, including a 3 lb 13 ounce largemouth.  But it was good enough to win!”

 

Ken Smith (Sharon): “I fished Shenango Lake this past week with pretty good results.  I caught lots of good-size crappies, plus a few bass.  I was hang-gliding with MicroSpoons in deeper water and casting jigs to the shoreline blow-downs.  The panfish bite should be even better after this cold front cools the water down a little more.”

 

 

Paddlers preparing for the inaugural float on the Shenango River between Pymatuning Outflow and Greenville (Darl Black © photo)

Shenango River

On October 1, the Shenango River Watchers officially opened the stretch ofShenangoRiverfrom Pymatuning Dam Outflow toGreenvillefor kayaking and canoeing with a float trip.  For as long as I can remember, floating that section of river had been impossible due to felled trees across the stream.  The River Watchers lead an effort to raise money to “timber” the river, with the work finally completed a couple weeks ago.  There were over 100 kayaks and canoes making the trip, leaving in groups of three to 10 boats.  While many individuals in the float were fromNorthwestern Pennsylvania, other participants drove hundreds of miles to take part in this paddle.  Although few of the day trippers had fishing rods, this section of river offers good fishing for crappie and walleye, particularly in the spring.

 

Anglers on the fishing pier in the Shenango River below Pymatuning Dam (Darl Black © photo)

Also at the Pymatuning Dam Outflow, three anglers on the fishing pier were catching small crappies.  One individual had caught 40 fish in just two hours.  He frequently fishes theShenangoRiverbelow the outflow, stating he has caught crappie, perch, walleye, white bass, musky and even hybrid stripers from the same spot at different times of the year.  The best fishing is from now through spring with higher water flows.

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Fly Shop): “Neshannock is still muddy from all the rain this week.  Don’t expect much improvement early this coming week as more heavy rain is expected.  The fall trout stocking for Neshannock is Tuesday, October 4 at1:00 PM.”

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

Mike Horrobin (Jigger Wholesale) says the fall bite is not yet in full swing, but will be growing stronger this coming week with the cooler temperatures and rain.  Most of the bass and walleye caught by customers this week in the river were coming on big creek minnows or store-bought shiners.

 

Large live indigenous minnows are the ticket for bass and walleye in the Allegheny right now (Darl Black © photo)

Rob Genter (Tidioute) and a buddy fished the river for walleye on Sunday, October 2.  Using creek bait and riffle runners, they caught 10 walleye but only 3 were legal size.  They also caught several smallmouths in the 2.5- to 3-pound range, and a 25-inch brown trout.

 

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “I fished the Allegheny on September 28.  There was plenty of floating weeds; just about every cast became fouled.  I managed to land ½ dozen smallmouth, but no obvious pattern – every fish was caught on a different lure.”

 

Chris Wolfgong (OilCity): “I fished the river on the evening of September 28 with Dale Black for two hours.  Some of us had a good night.  I caught all my fish on soft jerkbaits – nose-hooked of course.  I should have tried that long ago; I’m not missing nearly as many fish by nose hooking with a smaller drop-shot hook.  I caught a total of eight smallmouths – by my accurate count, five by Dale’s ‘you weren’t that far ahead of me’ count.  I’m going to give Dale the benefit of the doubt and say he caught three fish – don’t quote me on that!  The smallmouth ranged from 10” to 15.5”.  The fish were taken in the faster water where vegetation was lacking.

 

“I also had a chance this week to throw some of the lures received from the Fishing Report.  I like the action of the Trigger-X soft jerkbaits when nose-hooked.  I caught a few fish with them; they seemed durable.  The head of the bait doesn’t tear as easily as with some soft jerkbaits.  The Rapala UL Minnow will be great once the floating weeds disappear.  This weighted UL Minnow cast nicely on light line, and I also liked that it was a sinking lure.  I didn’t get a chance to throw the Trigger-X tubes yet because I’ve had too much fun catching fish on soft jerkbaits – but the tube biting is coming!”

 

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “I fished the Allegheny Riveron September 24th with my dad.  We caught over 10 smallmouths on live minnows (blue dots and sand pike).  The bite was strange, and complicated by grass floating down the river.  No bites until the fog lifted around9 AM.  I tried soft jerkbaits but blanked with them.”

 

Venango trout streams

Mike Horrobin: “The weather this week was not very comfortable on the trout streams but anglers who were out fishing did fairly well.  Young Luke Guth got a nice brown trout on a live worm.  Congratulations Luke!  I’ve been tying up a bunch of streamers using Puglisi EP-fibers and Polar Flash with Fish Skulls for forward weight in hopes of getting some bigger fall fish.  As the water rises these new streamers should work as well as Clousers and maybe even better due to the more realistic look.”  Note: Mike sent a picture of Luke’s trout, but I could not open it; will run it next week.

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford andVenangoCounties)

John Ensworth (John’s Bait) reports anglers stopping in for live bait to fish French Creek.  “But with the muddy water from all the rain, they were not catching anything the last few days.”

 

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “Perch and bluegill are being caught in the Fries Roadbridge area on jigheads tipped with small minnows.  A few crappies are being reported.  Walleye and crappie action seems to be picking up again under the PA bridge on the Espyville Causeway; two customers caught their limit of ‘eyes in less than hour Saturday morning, jigging Sonars, Cicadas and Vib”e” blade baits.

 

“Walleyes are being caught off Snodgrass later in the day.  I had two customers that were up all week fishing; they trolled the area from Snodgrass around Beer Can and Stocker Islands and back to Snodgrass.  They brought in a limit of walleye every day.  The weather beat them up, but they caught fish.”

 

John Ensworth (John’s Bait): “Over the weekend a couple of my customers got into crappie at Bridge 20 area from shore.  Today, Monday, they came back for more minnows, buying all my crappie minnows and heading back to Pymatuning.”

Ken Smith’s catch of panfish and a channel cat from Pymatuning (Smith photo)

 

Ken Smith (Sharon): “I fished Pymatuning last Thursday for a few hours.  Found the fish in deep water – at 18 feet near (not over) brush and stumps.  The catch included crappies, bluegills, perch and a 22” channel cat – all taken on Triple Tail Jigs from Microspoons.com.”

 

Sugar Lake

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “I fished SugarLakeon September 18th for several hours in the morning.  I got four largemouth bass – one on a Luhr Jensen crankbait and three on a ¼-oz. Booyah Spinnerbait.  I lost a 4-pounder at the boat when the spinnerbait broke at the R bend – the upper portion of the spinnerbait with blades flew into the boat while the fish and hook went the other way.”

 

“Also, I tried the Trigger X baits in a local farm pond without success this past week.  I was testing the Trigger X on the new Berkley Nanofil filament line.  Something isn’t working – bait or the white filament line.  I could not get a bite with that combo, but when I switched to a rod with a Senko and monofilament line, I quickly got five bass.”

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait – Erie Store): “The cold, windy and wet weather has kept the number of anglers fishing the bay down this week.  Before the miserable weather set in, my customers were catching the big lake perch off the North Pier and crappies inMarinaLake.  Steelhead trout are observed jumping in the Bay, but few are being caught.”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Andy (B.A.C. Bait – Trout Run Store): “The tributaries are beginning to clear and calm down from the torrent of rain this past week.  With a little luck they will be fishable by Tuesday or Wednesday, and should be in good shape by the weekend.  There are a lot of steelheads in the streams but the water conditions need to improve to catch them.”

 

Matt Hyrcyk (Poor Richards): “Creeks are high and roiled, but loaded with steelhead.  Prior to the high water, fish had made it to Folley’s on Elk Creek and the railroad bridge onWalnut Creek.  I expect them to be higher up in the streams once the water drops.  The number of returning fish this fall looks very good.”

 

Ken Anderson (Tionesta): “On September 26, I observed over 30 steelheads in the pool at the mouth of Four Mile Creek.  Local kids were fishing but no one hooked a fish.”

 

Ed Lawrence (Union City): “I went up to Trout Run andWalnut Creek for steelhead on September 25.  Some fish were caught by other fishermen early in the morning, but we had no luck.  We threw everything at ‘em, but the fish were thoroughly spooked by all the anglers.”

 

Fishing Tip

Crappie fishing in NW PA is very good during the fall (Darl Black © photo)

Go Crappie!  With many anglers targeting walleye, bass, musky and steelhead during the hot fall bite, an often overlooked species is crappie.  Crappie is not just a springtime and summer fish.  Starting right now, Northwest Pennsylvania crappies are putting on the feedbag like other species and in most lakes moving a little shallower than they have been all summer (typically moving to the weed edge on natural lakes).  As the water cools down even more by late October, crappies move to deeper water (often 20 to 35 feet on lakes with that depth) – but are still feeding strongly.  Our best fall crappies lakes are ShenangoLake, LakeWilhelm, PymatuningLake, ConneautLake, WoodcockLake, LakeLeBoeuf, EdinboroLakeand PresqueIsleBay.  Minnow-imitating jigs are good choices for October.   Small jigging spoons and blade baits work when crappies are deep in November and December.  Darl Black 

 

 

Gamma Salutes

The spool of Gamma PolyFlex Line this week goes to young Luke Guth for his big trout.  (Photo will run next Report when a different image is available.)  A spool of 4-pound test Gamma Gold will be sent.

 

Editor comment on Gamma: I’ve been using 4-pound Gamma PolyFlex Gold all summer long on my panfish rods.  It casts great and is incredibly strong – landing several incidental bass, walleye and pike on the light line.  Also, the Gold is visible to the angler above water to help detect bites – but being of such small diameter, the gold color disappears under the water.  Darl Black

 

Weekly Drawing

The contributor’s name drawn as winner of the Road Runner Crappie Pack is Chris Wolfgong.  The pack will be sent direct from TTI-Blakemore.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Oct 16            Allegheny RiverBass Team Tournament #2

$100 per team; for info contact Eric Heil lt.heil@yahoo.com

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

Sponsored by: PA Great Lakes Region

GAMMA Fishing Line (now owned by Black Knight Industries of Oil City)

 

Connect to all counties at www.PaGreatLakes.com

–       Crawford County Convention &Visitors Bureau at www.visitcrawford.org

–       VisitErie at www.visiterie.com

–       VisitMercerCountyPA at www.visitmercercountypa.com

–       Oil Region Alliance at www.oilregion.org

 

 Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

No Comments

Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 9-26-11

News

–       Goodbye to Summer!  Every real angler welcomes the fall season with its fantastic fishing opportunities for big smallmouth bass, hefty walleye, trophy musky, abundant crappie and of course the long-awaited steelhead.  This year I am particularly pleased to see an end to what likely was the worst summer of fishing that I have experienced in two decades.  Blame it on weather, water conditions or personal scheduling conflicts – I don’t know, but both my time on the water and my catch rate suffered.  The only fishing I did the last week of summer was onConneautLakewith Harvey Bartash, a friend fromHarrisburg.  Check outHarvey’s comments underConneautLaketo see the typical luck I’ve had this summer.

 

–       While I didn’t have but one opportunity to fish Pymatuning early in the summer, receiving these reports from contributors leaves little doubt that Pymatuning Reservoir has been fishing extremely well for a variety of species in 2010.

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Nacopoulos (B.A.C. Bait): “The big news this week involves steelhead beginning to show up in the Bay – not a lot, but they are catching some.  Also the crappie bite inMarinaLakehas been very good for anglers in boats – lots of 10 to 12 inch crappies on minnows.  My customers have been catching perch, crappie and bass from the North Pier, and crappie from East and West Piers.  One gentleman showed me a nice pike that he caught in Horseshoe Pond.”

 

Chub Hornstein (Meadville): Gail Peterson and I went toErielast week during the full moon and had a bad day.  We only caught 10 bass in five hours.  And I only caught one of them…about 10 inches long.  I hate the full moon.”

 

Ernie Pate (Butler): “Brother Ken and I won the Keystone Bass Buddy Circuit Championship last weekend (September 18) on PIB.  We weighed 15.7 pounds for six largemouths.  The fish were caught on jigs and Beavers.”

 

Lake Erie

 

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors) took Sunday morning off from running the shop and headed to Erie for perch.  He phoned in a report about10 AM.  Fishing had been slow so far, landing only about 30 fish.

 

Chuck Papinchak (Cochranton): “Several friends and I headed toErieearlier this week to fish perch off a head boat – the Danny O.  It was slow at first, but picked up later in the morning.  We got into them in 62 feet of water three miles off shore.  I had to clean all the fish for our group – we took 65 fish home.  I had the biggest one at just over 16 inches!”

 

 

Steelhead anglers in Walnut Creek (© Darl Black photo)

Lake Erie tributaries

Poor Richards Bait reports good number of steelhead in the lower sections of the tributaries near theErieshoreline.  This week customers brought in three steelheads at 13 pounds, and one at 12 pounds.  Most of the trout are being caught on eggs and live minnows.

 

 

Mercer County Waters

 

 

Wilhelm crappie (© Darl Black photo)

Lake Wilhelm

Bob (Fergies Bait) says it has been a slow week at Wilhelm.  Anglers in boats and from shore are catching bluegills and a few crappies.  He has not had reports on bass or walleye lately.  “But the water is cooling down,” he adds.  “The fall season on Wilhelm can be awesome for largemouth bass and musky.  In early October, there will be guys lining the upper causeway to catch lots of bluegills.  In the late fall, the crappie bite goes strong down by the dam with fish suspended over the creek channel.  And if we get good rain runoff with some breeze, the walleyes may turn on in the upper part of the lake by the Marina.”

 

Shenango Lake

Al Moore (Cochranton): “I’m looking forward to fishing for bass on Shenango this coming week.  I really enjoy that lake in the fall when all the pleasure boaters are gone.  I’ll send a report after I get back.”

 

Neshannock Creek

Bob Shuey (Neshannock Creek Outfitters) is anxiously awaiting the PFBC stocking of trout in the creek during early October.

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

Dale Black (OilCity) reports the river above Franklindid not go up much due to rain but the floating weeds are now a problem.  “I was out one hour on Friday evening and caught one 17-inch smallmouth on a 4” Dinger.  Floaters fouled every cast.”

 

Bill Logan (Pleasantville) reports that while fishing on tributary just upstream from the Allegheny, he caught several bass on a buzzbait and had a 40-inch musky blow up on the bait.  “It was awesome!”

 

Chuck Sari (Franklin): “My son Kevin and I fished the Allegheny on Saturday, September 17 and had one of our better days.  We landed 15 bass and 2 nice walleye.  All were landed on 3- to 4-inch creek minnows caught from French Creek.  This time of year the type of minnow isn’t that important.  The river was low and clear, and there is no floating weed problem yet.  As the water temperature cools, the fishing will only get better.”

 

Eric Heil and John Ringle with Allegheny smallmouth (Heil photo)

Eric Heil (Franklin): “The Allegheny River Team Tournament sponsored by the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 50, went well last weekend, September 17.  The river was perfect for the event.  The water temperature was 63-64 degrees.  Air temperature at take-off was 45 degrees but climbed to 70 by weigh-in. It was sunny all day. The water was clear in some areas, and slightly stained in others.   We had 27 two-person teams participate.  A total of 82 smallmouth bass were brought to the scales for a total weight of 173.53 pounds.  All fish were released alive.  The teams reported catching smallmouth on a variety of baits including jerkbaits, crankbaits, tubes, soft stickbaits, jigs and spinnerbaits.  Several teams also reported catching walleye; John Ringel caught an ‘eye that measured 29 inches and weighted 7 pounds.  Top three teams follow.”

 

1st Place: Rob Genter & Kit Pascarell – 5 bass for 14.45 lbs. plus a 4.54 lunker

2nd Place: Eric Heil & John Ringel – 5 bass for 13.48 lbs.

3rd Place: Bob Stephens & Randy Adams – 5 bass for 12.93 lbs.

Next tournament is October 16th; email lt.heil@yahoo.com for application and details.

 

Kahle Lake

Steve Fleckenstein (Clarion): “I had a fisherman tell me that he was getting some nice bluegills at KahleLakethe past couple days.  I’m still fishing the nearby Beaver Creek Ponds.  On Monday I caught bluegill and 3 small bass on the Slider Charlie Bee you sent me last week.  Fishing it below a bobber, yesterday I caught some more ‘gills with it before the fish finally bit the tail off.   Bluegills certainly love that little bait.  My second rod was rigged with a 1” purple split tail tipped with a maggot – the ‘gills went for it too.  I had a nice bass chase a struggling bluegill to shore as I was reeling in the fish.  The bass snapped at it just as I was lifting it from the water.  Last week I had a nice-size bass grab a hooked bluegill, and I fought it briefly until the bass let it go.”

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford andVenangoCounties)

 

Ed Lawrence’s son with French Creek walleye (Lawrence photo)

Ed Lawrence (Corry): “My son and I caught several 20-inch walleyes from French Creek this week, and lost several more.  We caught them on jigs during the early morning.”

 

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “I was catching walleye pretty good in the Creek until we had that deluge of rain that turned French into a raging mud hole.  All my walleye were taken on smoke/sparkle Slider Double Action Grubs (a 3-1/4” swimbait) fished on a jighead.  When the water came up, I pulled on chest waders to hit some of the oxbow cut-offs on the Creek, and nailed several largemouth ranging from 2 to 4 pounds on a Terminator T-1 Spinnerbait in Perch pattern.  I also caught some bluegills up Cussawago Creek on the Slider Charlie Bee jig-spinner.”

 

Lou Letterle with French Creek smallmouth from a float trip (Letterle photo)

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “Last week I floated the Creek from Carlton to  Utica.  We caught a dozen smallmouths but nothing particularly impressive.”

Crawford County Waters

 

Pymatuning Lake

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “Anglers were doing pretty well on a variety of species this past weekend.  There were lots of crappie, bluegill and some nice yellow perch coming in.  The big thing is the walleye bite – pretty good numbers for this early in the fall.  Most of the ‘eyes are coming on blade baits.  The hot one in my shop is the Vibe in gold finish.”

 

Ernie Pate (Butler): “Ken and I were up at Pymatuning on Saturday, September 24.  We caught 32 bass, mostly smallmouth, on small cranks, spinnerbaits, buzzbaits and Flukes.  Majority of bass were 16 to 18 inches; the largest was a 4-pound largemouth.”

 

Chub Hornstein (Meadville): “I went to Pymatuning yesterday (September 17) and caught 24 walleye, including 6 keeper fish.  All the walleye came from 12 to 15 feet of water on 1/4-oz. Heddon Sonar.  Fish ranged from 13.5 to 15.5 inches, and all appeared healthy.  Looks like walleye fishing will be good this fall and great in the spring.”

 

Dustin Shay (Meadville): “One evening this past week, a couple of my buddies and I headed to the Causeway to fish for catfish from shore; we caught four and missed another 6 or 7 runs.  But there was a boat anchored a little ways out in front of us along the channel.  At first, they weren’t catching much – a couple crappies and small walleye.  However, they kept saying ‘Wait untilmidnight.’  At just aboutmidnight, the walleyes moved along the channel.  We watched them catch 25 to 30 ‘eye on blade baits, with one fish they said measured 25 inches.  Seems after dark is the ticket on Pymatuning right now.”

 

Conneaut Lake

 

Harvey Bartash (Harrisburg): “I enjoyed our day of fishing onConneautLakethis past week.  I told my wife every time we go fishing with you, I learn something new.  The first time you taught me a new knot and how to mark the area we intend to fish, as well as teaching me the difference between fishing and catching – I mostly fish!  When we went fishing toLake Eriea few years back, I learned not to park a state vehicle on the peninsula when the wind is blowing 65 mph and pushing water across the exit road – you may end up swimming or worse yet, trying to explain to the state garage how the car stalled out inLake Erie.  This time you taught me that whenever you go out in your river jet – even on Conneaut – to make sure that you have four batteries onboard: a main one for the jet motor when you leave the ramp, a back-up battery in case the number one battery dies, a back-up battery to back-up the back-up in the event it is dead and a fourth battery so you have something to power the trolling motor so you can fish.”

 

Gamma Salutes

The winner of a spool of Gamma PloyFlex Line is Lou Letterle for the photo of French Creek smallmouth.   To have your name entered in the weekly drawing for a spool of Gamma, simply email a useable photo of any fish species which you caught from NW PA in the past week.  Gamma Line is available at CDS (Grove City); Poor Richards (Fairview); John’s Bait (Meadville) and Espyville Outdoors (Espyville).

 

Weekly Drawing

Drawn from the contributors who sent in information last week, Chuck Sari ofFranklinwon the Rapala Lure Pack for 9-18.  This week the name drawn for the Rapala Pack was Ed Lawrence.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Oct 1               River Watcher Float on Shenango; Pymi Outflow toGreenville

Info: Hugh Clark greengrass@windstream.net

 

Oct 1&2          Antlers and Anglers Showcase, CrawfordCountyFairgrounds

For information, contact Joan Kocan at jkocan@agoc.com

 

Oct 16            Allegheny RiverBass Team Tournament #2

$100 per team; for info contact Eric Heil lt.heil@yahoo.com

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

Sponsored by: PA Great Lakes Region

GAMMA Fishing Line (now owned by Black Knight Industries of Oil City)

 

Connect to all counties at www.PaGreatLakes.com

–       Crawford County Convention &Visitors Bureau at www.visitcrawford.org

–       VisitErie at www.visiterie.com

–       VisitMercerCountyPA at www.visitmercercountypa.com

–       Oil Region Alliance at www.oilregion.org

 

 Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

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Northwest Pennsylvania Fishing Report 9-12-11

News

– The upper Shenango River from Pymatuning Dam Outflow to Greenville is now clear of blockages and may be paddled by canoe or kayak – thanks to the Shenango River Watchers and both the Jamestown and Greenville Lions.  See “ShenangoRiver” section for more details.

 

Crawford County Waters

Pymatuning Lake

Chris Hall (Espyville Outdoors): “The water temperature continues to drop!  That is a good thing!  The crappie bite has slowed a little by the causeway, but anglers are still pulling out good fish.  Anything ‘white’ seems to be effective.  Walleye catches have started to pick up slightly. StockerIslandand off Snodgrass ramp have produced decent-size ‘eye this past week.  Green blade worm harnesses and Hot-N-Tots were most productive.  Largemouth bass were hitting small shad-colored crankbaits around lily pads.”

 

Dave Richter (Richter’s General Store): “The few anglers who are chasing crappies are still catching some nice ones – just as they have all summer.  These are 12- to 14-inch fish, being taken in deepwater; nothing shallow yet, although the water temp is dropping.  Some keeper walleyes were reported this week – just not a lot of guys fishing.  That will change as the water cools.  I had reports of smallmouth bass caught on shallow-running square-bill crankbaits.”

 

Ken Smith (Sharon): “I fished Pymatuning twice last week.  The water temp was 72 degrees, and the bite was good.  I caught crappie, bluegills and perch on jigs tipped with maggots in 13 feet of water over brush.  MicroSpoon’s new Triple-Tail Grubs accounted for almost all of my catch.  I spooled up the Gamma PloyFlex line won in a Fishing Report drawing; it is a very good line.  No pictures because it was raining both days – anyways, I left my camera at home!”

 

Conneaut Lake

Al Moore (Cochranton): “I went to ConneautLakeon Sunday morning for a few hours.  In three hours, I caught seven bass flippin’ the weedbeds and docks.  I used a Berkley Chigger Craw.  I pulled up on one particular weedbeds, pitched in and caught a 21-3/4” smallmouth!  What a fight!!  I also caught two northern pike and bowfin on the Chigger Craw.”

 

Conneaut Lake smallmouth bass (© Darl Black)

Marilyn Black (Cochranton): “Darl and I fished Conneaut for just over three hours on Saturday morning, September 9.  We were looking for big smallmouth.  Using a variety of different topwater plugs on an extremely calm and overcast morning, we had some nice brown bass blow up on our surface lures.  But most strikes were more tail slaps than trying to grab it; hook-ups were few and far between, with only one decent smallmouth landed.  On one occasion, a pack of 3-pound smallmouth made a beeline from a weedline for Darl’s prop bait, but all veered off before striking it.  Another time a huge smallmouth came up and rolled over his bait.  Darl blamed it on five days of steady, unchanging low barometer that have smallmouth in a strange mood.”

 

Chuck Papinchak (Cochranton): “On Saturday, September 9, I caught 15 northern pike with the biggest one 26.5 inches, along with four small largemouth bass; almost all fish came on drop-shot worms.  I was back out on Sunday with my buddy Robbie.  We caught 8 largemouth and several small pike.  Again, drop-shotting caught most fish, except for Robbie’s 16” bass which fell for a Strike King crankbait.

 

Chad Templin (Meadville): “My fishing buddy and I fished Conneaut this week.  Water temperature was in the 70s.  Each of us caught about a half dozen small bass and half dozen small pike.  Most of the fish came on Strike King KVD Spinnerbaits and locally-made BS Jigs fished along the weed edges.”

 

 

Erie County Waters

 

Presque Isle Bay

Al Napocopoulos (B.A.C. BaitErie): “Some of my regular customers are catching nice perch off the North Pier, and one of them got a 12 pound catfish.  They are also getting a few crappies inMarinaBay.  There are scattered reports of largemouth bass in the Bay – but no reports of steelhead in PIB.  Perch are still out deep, but I expect to see more perch in PIB by the end of September.”

 

Lake Erie

Mike Tome (B.A.C. Bait Fairview): “I wish there was a better report for steelhead, but there isn’t any water in the tributaries to get the fish moving.  A few trout are being caught at the mouths of the tributaries, mainly by casting spoons into the surf.  We have the most popular colors plus some custom colors for the Little Cleo, Kastmaster and KO Wobbler.

 

Jeff Staaf (Poor Richards): “Perch are still going strong in 50 to 62 feet of water.  That bite should continue into the fall until it simply gets too rough to get out to the perch.  The big school of walleye that was down east off the point appears to be moving west.  Anglers were catching them good in 75 feet of water just north ofWalnut Creek.  There are a few steelhead being caught by walleye trollers out deep, and there are a few steelhead being caught at stream mouths.  Last year at this time, there were some trout in the streams but this summer was warmer and it’s taking longer to cool down.  Overall, it’s not worth a trip toEriefor steelhead yet.  We need water temperature in the streams to drop into the mid 60s before we see a run – and of course we need water in the streams, which we do not have right now.”

 

Chad Templin (Meadville): “I fishedEriefor perch with Don Ishimaru this week.  We had our limit in two hours.  Live minnows from B.A.C. Bait did the trick.  Minnows were fished on standard perch rig.  We actually caught some fish on a bare hook with fly-wing attractor!”

 

Lake Erie tributaries

Bait shops report a few steelheads beginning to stage at mouths of stream, and anglers picking some up casting into the surf.  But tributaries are without water flow and no significant rain is in the forecast.

 

Mercer County Waters

 

Lake Wilhelm

Bob Mohra (Fergies Bait Shop) reports that with the cooling of water a bit, largemouth bass have started to hit again.  He had anglers say they caught good largemouth on a white Moss Boss as well as purple plastic worms – size and brand not mentioned.  Bluegills are hitting Sam’s Ant tipped with a waxworm.  “The bigger crappies are being taken down near the dam on minnows.  Crappies are suspended five feet below the surface.”

 

Al Moore (Cochranton): “I went to Wilhelm on Labor Day Monday for three hours.  I caught nine bass, including two in the 18- to 20-inch range…and broke off a big fish.  All fish were taken on a black Berkley Chigger Craw.”

 

Laurie Frantz (R&L Bait): “My daughter was fishing at Wilhelm this week from the causeway.  She caught 50 bluegills with 25 of them being keepers.  But the big surprise: she caught most of them on a Heddon Sonar jigged along the bottom!  She also caught a catfish and couple bass by casting a Storm Hot-N-Tot – again from shore of the main lake causeway.”

 

 

Shenango Lake panfish (Ken Smith photo)

Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon): “ShenangoLakeis cooling down quickly.  It went from 78 to 71 degrees this week.  The crappies haven’t moved shallow yet, but I expect that to happen in the next week when temperatures drop into the 60s.  I found a bunch of crappies on deeper brush; they hit just about any jig I threw at them.”

 

 

Amish horse team pulling deadfalls from the Shenango River (© Darl Black)

Shenango River

Hugh Clark (Shenango River Watchers) on theShenangoRiverproject that removed obstructions from the river: “The purpose of the project is to return the upperShenangoRiverto the community and region as a recreational amenity, suitable for safe and accessible paddle craft use.  We plan to incorporate the stretch into the PF&BC’s Water Trail system, thereby projecting the river’s profile on a state platform.

 

“PaddleFest 2011 will be on Saturday, October 1,” continues Hugh.  “We’ll shuttle paddlers fromRiversideParkinGreenvilleback to their boats at the put-in site just below Pymatuning Dam.  Drop your canoe or kayak at the dam outflow, drive toGreenvilleand leave your car at theRiversidePark.  We will drive you back to your boat for the float.  The free shuttle will operate between8:30 AMuntil about10:00 AM.  At the end of the float (about 3 hours), we will serve a free hot dog lunch inRiversidePark.”

 

Venango County Waters

 

Allegheny River

Dale Black (OilCity): “On Sunday, September 11, just before the big storm arrived, I got out on the river at OilCityto fish for less than 30 minutes.  I was fishing the mud line of Oil Creek merging with the river water.  Before the storm, the smallmouth bass were biting like crazy.  I was using a shad-colored Houdini Shad soft jerkbait.  On my first cast, I had a big bass throw the bait.  I landed two bass in the 15-inch range, and missed four other fish – then the lightening arrived and I left.”

 

Rob Genter (Tidioute): “I fished a club tournament out of OilCityon Sunday, September 11.  The mud from Saturday’s rain up river had not reached OilCityarea until afternoon.   I caught 15 to 20 bass in the morning on a Chug Bug and Fluke; my boat partner had another 11 bass.  I won the tournament with five bass for 13.63 pounds, which included three smallmouth over three pounds.”

 

Dustin Shay with Allegheny River smallmouth on live bait (© Darl Black)

Darl Black (Cochranton): “With high expectations on Friday, September 9, Dustin Shay and I set out with some jumbo riffle runners which Dustin had caught to target big smallmouth.  A fall onto the rocks at theFranklinramp almost ended the day for me.  Even though sore, stiff and bleeding a bit, we pushed on figuring things would get better.  Not really.  I hit a big rock with my jet going through Belmar riffle – first bump ever in that riffle.  And the hoped for bite on live bait did not materialize.  Lots of short strikes simply killed our riffle runners.  Few fish hooked, and none in the lunker class.”

Big bluegill from Beaver Creek Pond (Steve Fleckenstein photo)

 

Kahle Lake

Steve Fleckenstein (Clarion): “Haven’t had much to report this summer as I spent most days after work at home in air conditioning!  However, I’m getting out again, and I started catching some decent bluegills at Beaver Creek Ponds (near KahleLake).  I’ve been using 1-inch split-tails, hair jigs and some home-made ice jigs tipped with live maggots or Gulp!.  I’m waiting for the water to cool some more; then I hopefully will get into some perch.”

 

 

 

French Creek (Erie, Crawford andVenangoCounties)

 

Lou Letterle (Franklin): “I had a great fishing trip on French Creek on Thursday, September 8.  I was initially going to the river, but with heavily overcast skies and the threat of rain, I didn’t feel like launching the boat for what may have ended up as a short trip.  I decided to wade-fish French Creek.

Lou Letterle’s 20 inch French Creek smallmouth (Letterle photo)

 

“I ended up fishing near Utica,” continues Lou.  “I had consistent action with smallmouth using topwater baits – primarily a Rapala Floating Minnow and a Heddon Torpedo.  Aroundnoon the skies cleared and the topwater bite ended.  I switched to a Senko rigged on a jighead, and ended up catching a 20-inch smallmouth (measured without squeezing the tail).  I tried to take some ‘one-arm’ photos since I was alone.  But to get the fish in the picture, I had to hold the fish behind me – making it look smaller.  Tally for the day was 19 smallmouths – a very nice ‘early fall’ day on French Creek!”

 

Dustin Shay and Russ Chaney with 14 &16 pound channel cats from French Creek (Shay photo)

Russ Chaney with snapping turtle from French Creek (Shay photo)

Dustin Shay (Meadville) had a darn good week on French Creek.  Early in the week during his quest for a big flathead catfish, both he and his buddy Russ Chaney caught a couple nice channel cats (14 and 16 pounds) using 9- to 14-inch hog suckers as bait.  They also caught a mess of smaller eating-size cats on fresh dead baits at night – along with a snapping turtle.  (See Photo #7, #8)

 

 

 

 

Dustin Shay with 5 pound largemouth taken on SPRO Frog from French Creek oxbow pond. (Shay photo)

Dustin Shay with French Creek smallmouth on T1 Spinnerbait (Shay photo)

Dustin continues: “On September 10, using a SPRO Frog, I caught seven largemouth bass from weed mats on oxbow ponds off French Creek.  Two of those bass were in the 3.5 to 4 pound range, and the biggest one was a thick five-pounder.  That was my best day ever for largemouth on the Creek.  On the Creek proper, I caught a couple smallies; both fish came on a 3/8-ounce Terminator T-1 Spinnerbait in a new perch pattern.”  (See Photo #9, #10)

 

 

 

Gamma Salutes

This week the spool of Gamma Line goes to Dustin Shay.  Having submitted numerous photos of fish from French Creek., four of them were used in the Report.  Gamma Line may be purchased in Northwest Pennsylvaniaat CDS, Espyville Outdoors, John’s Bait, or Poor Richards.

 

Rapala Lure Pack Winner

Al Moore of Cochranton was the name drawn from contributors this week for the Rapala Lure Pack.  Watch for it in the mail.

 

Fishing Tip of the Week

Mike Horrobin (CLTackle.com): “Well, we needed the rain this week to fill the creeks and cool things off.  Surprisingly, given all the water that came down, it didn’t fill the mountain streams that much.  I love to fish the fall season for trout.  By summer’s end, trout have gotten pretty fussy having seen all the offerings by now.  Before the real bite gets started, right now is great time to try out a few new things that will hit the market in the spring.  I’ve seen some new fly tying materials and tools from J:son of Sweden; they are in the WOW category.  Fish Skulls has a new head for sculpin imitations that should tie up real nice for this bait imitation when fishing smallmouth on French Creek andAllegheny River.  These items should be in shortly.

 

Dock Talk

This fall at Jigger Wholesale on Georgetown Road, Mike Horrobin will conduct free fly-tying and tackle-making classes.  Call Mike at 814-437-6987 or cltackle@hotmail.com for details.

 

Outdoor Calendar of Events

 

Sept 18         Allegheny RiverBass Team Tournament #1

$100 per team; for info contact Eric Heil lt.heil@yahoo.com

 

Oct 1               River Watcher Float on Shenango; Pymi Outflow toGreenville

Info: Hugh Clark greengrass@windstream.net

 

Oct 1&2          Antlers and Anglers Showcase, CrawfordCountyFairgrounds

For information, contact Joan Kocan at jkocan@agoc.com

 

Oct 16            Allegheny RiverBass Team Tournament #2

$100 per team; for info contact Eric Heil lt.heil@yahoo.com

 

Nov 5              PA Steelhead Expo atRainbowGardens,Erie,PA

1 PM to 9 PM; contact steve@steelheadexpo.com for info

 

Information contributed by:

–       Chris’ Tackle Box, Jamestown, PA

–       Maurer’s Trading Post, Franklin, PA

–       Oil Creek Outfitters, Titusville, PA

–       John’s Bait & Tackle, Meadville, PA

–       Van Tassel’s Timberland Bait, Canadohta Lake, PA

–       Fergie’s Bait & Tackle, Sandy Lake, PA

–       R & L Bait & Tackle, Greenville, PA

–       B.A.C. Bait & Tackle, Erie, PA

–       Poor Richards Bait & Tackle, Fairview, PA

–       Presque Isle Angler, Erie, PA

–       Neshannock Creek Fly Shop, Volant, PA

–       Erie Sports Store, Erie, PA

–       CLTackle.com

–       Espyville Outdoors, Espyville, PA

–       Farrell’s Hook, Line & Stitch, Meadville, PA

–       Consumer Direct Sports, Grove City, PA

–       Jigger Wholesale Tackle, Franklin, PA

–       Area anglers

 

Sponsored by: PA Great Lakes Region

GAMMA Fishing Line (now owned by Black Knight Industries of Oil City)

 

Connect to all counties at www.PaGreatLakes.com

–       Crawford County Convention &Visitors Bureau at www.visitcrawford.org

–       VisitErie at www.visiterie.com

–       VisitMercerCountyPA at www.visitmercercountypa.com

–       Oil Region Alliance at www.oilregion.org

 

 Note: The information in the NW PA Weekly Fishing Report is based on the observations and opinions of individuals at the reporting tackle shops and expert area anglers.  Although the information is reliable, it is not independently verified.

 

If you have fishing information or a picture of your catch from one of the waters in the following counties, please contact Darl Black at darlblack@windstream.net

In providing a picture, you are agreeing to it being posted on the Fishing Report.

Keep Up with More NW PA Fishing at http://darlblack.blogspot.com

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