Pennsylvania Fishing Report – May 16, 2019

Northwest Region

Get your fishing license ONLINE!
2019 PA Fishing Licenses went on sale December 1st.

The 2019 Trout Stocking Schedule is online. If you are interested in helping with trout stocking, search for your county from the drop-down list on the schedule. Pick your favorite stream to meet the stocking trout on the date and time of stocking.

Erie County

Stocked Trout Waters

Anglers are still finding trout in the stocked streams and even a few Steelhead yet.

Presque Isle Bay and Lake Erie

Bass anglers have begun their annual spring search for Smallmouth Bass on the bay and lake. Catch reports vary from day to day and our Erie weather has not helped. Anglers are catching a few Walleye in 10 to 20 feet of water by jigging with a minnow.

South Pier

Anglers are catching some nice Walleye off the South Pier at night.

Walnut and Elk Creek

Anglers are catching Walleye and Smallmouth Bass in the mouths of Elk and Walnut Creek in the evening and late-night hours.

Forest County

Tionesta Creek

Trout were stocked from Mayburg to Kellettville on April 23, 2019. Fly anglers are catching trout using caddis dry flies and nymphs. Some Blue Wing Olives have been hatching in the morning in about a size 20.

East Hickory Creek DHALO

Anglers have historically done well using Green Drake dry flies around the Memorial Day weekend. The Green Drake hatch generally occurs during the evening hours.

Tionesta Outflow

During the evening hours, a caddis hatch has been observed at the outflow. Trout anglers are catching trout using Blue Wing Olives in the morning and caddis during the day. Anglers must possess a current trout and salmon permit to fish in the outflow, regardless of specifically fishing for trout.

Maple Creek and Spring Creek

The Marienville Rod and Gun Club has recently stocked Maple Creek and Spring Creek.

Ross Run

The Kellettville Sportsman’s Club will be stocking on Memorial Day weekend the Children Only Fishing Area on Ross Run. The Fish and Boat Commission will also stock the Children’s Area on May 20, 2019.

Beaver Run

Anglers should fish the undercut banks and around submerged logs, with minnows or worms, using a small hook and light line.

Salmon Creek

Anglers are catching trout using minnows and paste bait. With low and clear water conditions, it is beneficial to cover the entire hook with bait.

Northcentral Region

Walleye season is in full swing!!

Tioga County

Hills Creek Lake and Hammond Lake

Anglers are catching Crappie, using live minnows, and white or chartreuse jigs. Trout magnets and cubby mini mites are also working well.

Fish weed beds, structure and dock areas.

The campground shoreline and the dam area are fishing well at Hills Creek. At Hammond, the campground boat launch and rocky area along Rt 287 are fishing well.

Clinton and Western Lycoming County

With recent rain events and high water across the County, anglers are fishing mountain streams. Anglers are catching trout using worms and minnows. Anglers are also catching trout using a variety of fly patterns (e.g. squirmy wormy, mop flies, caddis larvae patterns and beadhead prince nymph).

PA mountain stream
When other waterways are high and unfishable, PA still has many other waters anglers can fish! Find one of PA’s mountain streams and enjoy some good fishing! (photo provided by angler)

Fishing Creek

Rain events are keeping Fishing Creek water levels high and dirty. Water temperature is in the low 50s. More rain is predicted later this coming weekend, so be prepared for the water conditions to change.

Anglers, targeting deep, slow areas and areas with structure, are catching trout using nymphs. Nymph patterns that are working include (Iron lotus #16-18; flashback pheasant tail #14-18; pats rubberlegs #8-12).

When trout are active on the surface of the water, anglers are catching them using Midges #20-26; Hendrickson light and dark #14-16; Elk hair caddis black #12-14; Tan caddis #14-15; March Brown #10-12; Blue Wing Olives #18-22.

During or after rain events, fish olive or black streamer patterns (Headbanger sculpin #4-8) work well.

Center County

Spring Creek

Spring Creek is up and dirty, but clearing. Water temperatures are in the 50s. More rain is predicted for this coming weekend, so be prepared to switch up your game plan while fishing.

Sulphurs are on! Anglers are catching trout using dry flies (Sulphur Dun #14-16; Sulphur #14-16; Blue wing olives #18-22; Elk hair caddis- tan or black #14-16; Midges #22-26).

Anglers are also catching trout using nymphs and emergers. Nymph patterns that are working include Sulphur nymphs & emergers; iron lotus; hot spot sow bug; walt’s worm; black zebra midge; and mop flies.

During or after rain events, fish olive or black streamer patterns (slumpbusters #6-10).

Foster Joseph Sayers Lake

Anglers continue to catch a variety of panfish (e.g. Crappie, Bluegill, Pumpkinseed) in the shallows at Hunter Run Cut and Upper Greens Run.

Anglers are catching panfish using worms, wax worms, minnows and a selection of flies (e.g. squirmy wormy – pink and red; mop flies – fluorescent green; small streamers – black, white, chartreuse). Evening hours are best!

Young anglers are having a blast catching panfish like this pumpkinseed at Foster Joseph Sayers Lake! Hunter Run Cut and Upper Greens Run area are fishing well. (photo provided by angler)

Northeastern Region

Southern Wayne, Western Pike and Northern Monroe Counties

Anglers report having very good success catching Brook, Brown and Rainbow Trout in all stocked trout waters in the region. Anglers at Lehigh River, Tobyhanna Creek, Tobyhanna Lake, West Branch Wallenpaupack Creek, Fairview Lake, Jones Creek and Promised Land Lower Lake have been using a variety of natural and artificial baits.

Northern Pike and Southern Wayne Counties

The spring season has been a wet on so far, but anglers are having a good season trout fishing.  The waters are staying cold in the region which is good for the trout.  The Shad are progressing up the Delaware River and anglers are reporting a good catch of both row and bucks.  The crappies are still a bit slow due to the colder water temps.  The Stripers in Lake Wallenpaupack have been doing very well with anglers reporting catches ranging from 20” to 35” mostly being caught on live bait.

The boating season is fast approaching, and many people are placing their boats on the water.  Safety..Safety…Safety is the word for the season. Be sure to check that all your safety equipment requires is onboard your vessels along with the current registration.  Safe Boating Certificates are required for all persons who are driving PWC’s and those born after January 1, 1982 on all boats greater than 25 hp.  Have fun and enjoy the many bodies of water that PA has to offer.

Northern Wayne County

The trout streams are packed with fish.  A month into the season anglers are catching trophy golden rainbows on a regular basis.  Water levels can be challenging so try worms, minnows or corn if the levels are high or the waters are off color.  Crappie, bluegill, perch and walleye are active at Prompton Dam, Long Pond, Belmont Lake and Duck Harbor Pond.

Northern Susquehanna County

The trout streams are loaded with fish and all the stockings are complete.  Try your favorite bait of lure on your favorite trout water, the fish are waiting for you.  Bullhead Catfish anglers at Stump Pond are doing well on worms and perch colored plugs.  Catfish on the Susquehanna River are getting active as well.

Eastern Bradford County

Smallmouth Bass are active on the Susquehanna River near the confluences of any tributary and Channel Catfish are active everywhere in the river.  The trout streams are full of trout.

Southeastern Region

Berks County

Healthy Kids Day event
Recently the YMCA of Reading and Berks County and the Berks County Parks and Recreation Department held a “Healthy Kids Day” event. The event is designed to encourage children and their families to get outside and get active. This annual event, which draws crowds of up to 3,000 people, has many different and unique activities and displays. This year, Law Enforcement agencies and Emergency Responders were encouraged to bring emergency vehicles and display them for the kids and their families to see. WCO Troy Merrell and WCO Travis Miller, assisted by SGT Jeff Sabo, set up a display that included a PFBC Chevrolet Tahoe and well as one of the equipment trailers used by the PFBC’s SWERT water rescue team, which WCO Miller is currently a member of. The officers set up one of the inflatable SWERT boats and had the kids don PFDs and get in the boat, where they were given paddling instructions by the officers. The kids were also taught how to use a throw bag (a hand-held nylon bag that contains a coil of line and is used for water rescues) and got to practice using the bags. The PFBC’s display attracted quite a bit of attention and the kids had fun, while at the same time learning about boating and water safety. The attendees at this event were asked to vote for their favorite emergency vehicle display, and thanks to the efforts of the PFBC officers, the PFBC display was awarded First Place in the Emergency Services Vehicle display contest.

Chester County

The 2019 Handicapped Fishing Rodeo was again a huge success. Over 325 individuals from the Chester County Intermediate Unit had the chance to come out and try to catch a trout or two and to “Set the Hook on A Smile” with a little bit of help from some friends. The event was held on Wednesday May 8, at the Children’s Fishing Pond at Hibernia County Park. Some of the individuals that we assisted caught multiple fish including bass, sunfish, catfish & trout, and everyone had a wonderful time. I would like to thank Chester County Parks & Recreation, West Caln Sportsmen, and The Friends of Hibernia & Kurtz Fish Hatchery for providing all the bait for the event and for their continued support in making this event special, year after year. I would also like to thank the dozens of individuals who come out and help the individuals to catch a fish or two.

Many boaters and anglers ask about why the back cove at Chambers Lake is closed to boating. It is a waterfowl propagation area and is closed from now till June 15th so that waterfowl may use it as a nesting area. This area is one of the more productive areas of Chambers Lake, full of stumps and vegetation that holds lots of big Bass. This works out well this year with the opening day of Bass on the same date.  The area is closed now, and there will be another post when it reopens.

If you have been waiting for your big break into Bass Tournament Fishing, this maybe it. Captain Jim is hosting the Gambler Open Bass Tournament at the Octoraro Reservoir on Sunday, June 16th, from 6:00 AM until 2:00 PM, (8 Hours). To get to the lake, simply get on Rte 1 in Southern Chester County and get off on the Rt 472 Exit. Turn West on Rt 472 West and you will go over the Rt 472 Bridge and at the top of the next hill you will turn left on to Spruce Grove Road. You will go about a mile and at the bottom of the hill you will see the lake and the Fishing Headquarters on your left. The physical address for the Fishing Headquarters is 212 Spruce Grove Road, Kirkwood, PA. 17536, For even more information call Captain Jim, phone 717-529-2488 or visit his website at .  You must register online to enter the tournament at Only fishing from boats is permitted, limit of two persons per boat.

Crappie fishing continues to be good at Struble Lake. While on patrol yesterday evening, the District WCO checked two anglers that both had about 20 nice size crappies. Both told me that they had caught more than that, but they had released the smaller ones and only kept anything that was at least 8 inches long, the biggest was around 11 inches. Both anglers were fishing from shore, but anglers in boats working shoreline structure in 8 to 12 feet of water will usually catch more of these scrappy fish. Both anglers were using conventional crappie baits, one under a bobber and the other not. A favorite tactic is a fathead shiner fished under a bobber is the local Officer’s favorite bait. Good luck.

The Orvis Store in Downingtown at 70 Quarry Rd, Downingtown, PA. 19335 will offer a free course Fly-Fishing 101 on Saturday, May 25 from 9AM till 11:30AM. The course will cover everything that the beginning fly fisherman will need to know to get started in fly fishing.  For more information you can call the store at 610-873-8400 or visit the website at

Are you hunting for monster size crappie? A fine 16-inch beauty was just caught by a young angler at Chambers Lake. I am seeing numbers of nice size crappie starting to come out of Struble, Octoraro Reservoir, and Chambers Lake. I have seen crappie to 15 ¾ inches at Octoraro Reservoir and 16 ½ inches at Chambers Lake in past years. I can’t give you brand names but just use “crappie jigs” or small minnows fished 3 -5 feet under a pencil bobber and you will do great. Boat anglers doing better because they are better able to find the structure and locate a school. Once you find a fish you can usually anchor up over the school and continue to catch additional fish. Boat rentals, (rowboats are inexpensive to rent, it is the motor that makes it expensive), can be had at Octoraro Reservoir and Marsh Creek Reservoirs. Good Luck!

E. Schuylkill County

Trout fishing has been very good in the Little Schuylkill River for the last few weeks.  Water levels are up slightly, and it has a good color to it.  Pressure has been moderate especially during the weekdays but plenty of fish are still holding up throughout the stocked stretch.  May 16 is the final trout stocking on the stream for the year, but it should be good fishing all year long.  Mealworms and minnows have been excellent all year, spinners and jerk baits are working better as the water temperature rises.

Locust Lake is starting to see more boats on the water as camping season gets underway.  Trout are being caught in the lake near shore on all types of baits and lures.  Baits floated just off the bottom seem to do well for trout.  The lake receives another stocking on May 17.

Owl Creek Reservoirs have been good for both pickerel and bass lately.  Live shiners, crankbaits, and soft plastics have all worked well there.  Anglers should be aware that the reservoirs are catch-and-release areas, also it is unlawful to cast at a bass on a visible red (fish nest).

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