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NW Regional Reports
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Map highlighting counties in the Northwest RegionREGION COUNTIES -- Butler, Clarion, Crawford, Erie, Forest, Lawrence, Mercer, Venango, Warren (County Guide)

Reports compiled by Chad Foster (chfoster@pa.gov), Northwest Regional Education Specialist, using information provided by Waterways Conservation Officers, Area Fisheries Managers and other PFBC staff.

Fishing and Boating Report – September 10, 2014
Mercer County

Shenango Reservoir
Boating was down over the holiday weekend. There are plenty of days left in the summer, and fall is a beautiful time to boat the reservoir. With the amount of rain we’ve had, boaters have been fortunate to have higher water levels and fewer sandbars and shoals usually visible this time of year. Crappies are starting to pick up around the reservoir. Anglers are reporting that they are thickening up for the winter. A large number of fillet sized bluegills are being caught as well.  Catfish fishing is also progressing very well.

Shenango River
Water levels on the river are up also. The boaters using the Shenango River Water Trail can enjoy the higher flow to avoid portages. Make use of the new boat launch in the Village of Hamburg. The Shenango River Watchers have done an outstanding job providing access to the river at this location. Fall stocking of trout will be in October below the Shenango Reservoir outflow. This area is designated as a year round trout fishery. A current trout/salmon stamp is required to fish the area from the outflow to the Walnut Street Bridge, regardless of the species of fish you are targeting or harvesting. 

Enjoy the last days of nice weather. As always, make sure your safety equipment is onboard and serviceable to prevent a relaxing day on the water from turning into a disaster. 

Crawford County

Sugar Lake
Crappies in decent numbers have been caught lately.

Woodcock Lake
A few Walleyes and some nice size Smallmouth Bass have been caught.

Woodcock Creek (below the dam)
A few bluegills are still being caught along with plenty of Bowfins.

Reminder: Winter drawdowns of Woodcock Lake and Canadohta Lake will most likely begin in the middle or late October.

Forest County

Area waters
The Marienville Rod and Gun Club will be stocking trout this fall in Maple Creek and Spring Creek. Musky anglers have been successful trolling Tionesta Lake and casting lures at the Tionesta Outflow. As water temperatures cool, trout fishing should pick up on all local trout streams. Angler’s reported catching trout this summer on Salmon Creek and Tionesta Creek downstream of Kellettville.

Erie County

Presque Isle Bay
A northwest region law enforcement officer reported catching nothing but gobies while fishing night crawlers off of the Waterworks Pier recently.

Walnut Creek Access
Perch catch rates have been on and off this year.  Most anglers are fishing in around 50 feet of water straight out from Walnut Creek to catch them. Some weeks this summer, fish caught have been small while other weeks have seen big ones.

Walleye catches have been good this year whenever the weather allowed boaters to get out. Many have been bringing in their limits. There is speculation that the algae problem in the west basin may have made fishing better here. While most anglers have been fishing the trenches to get them, some have started going further west lately. However, many have reported more catches of Silver Bass and White Perch than perch and Walleye.

Note: All unpowered boats (canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, rowboats, etc.) launching or retrieving at PFBC access areas and DCNR state parks or forests must have a current boat registration (issued by any state), or PFBC Use Permit, or DCNR Launch or Mooring Permit.  For more information, visit http://fishandboat.com/registration.htm.” 

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Fishing and Boating Report – September 3, 2014
Butler County

Lake Arthur
Fishing has slowed in the dog days of summer, but nice catches of bass, Walleye and catfish can still be had.  Anglers have reported success with night crawlers or rubber worms off of the bottom. Where bass are being caught in heavy cover and shallow waters with rubber worms, the catfish and Walleye are deep and looking for live bait.  Try a very slow troll around Nealeys Point for Walleye.  Big catfish are being caught at a variety of locations in the lake.

The Glades spillway / outflow
Located in Cherry and Washington Townships, the Glades is part of Game Lands 95.  The Glades vista access road is off of Rt. 308 (just north of Moniteau High School).  The outflow of this impoundment is a honey hole for pan fish and catfish.  Note: Do not enter the dam breast or any other area on the state game lands that is marked with a yellow tag.  This is the propagation area and entry is illegal.  Boating after August 30th is not permitted on this impoundment.

Crawford County

Conneaut Lake
WCO Visosky reports that The PA Fish & Boat Commission navigation buoys will be removed the week after Labor Day. The laws still apply in those areas even without the buoys in place. With schools open and fall approaching, many more fishermen will be on the lake. Please use the lake in harmony and respect each other.

WCO Doyle reports that the lake should start to swing into fishing as the summer draws to an end.  He also stated, “This is the first year in a long time that zero citations were written for horseplay. Good job.”

Pymatuning Reservoir
The water level now is at normal pool but at some point the level will be lowered for the fall. Keep an eye out when that happens and avoid any shallow areas. The fishing this summer has been slow at best. The catch during the summer months always slows down and then always picks up in the fall. Since the weather now has been cooler and fall is approaching, the catch rate should be getting better.

French Creek
Water levels have finally settled and saw moderate pressure for the Labor Day holiday weekend. Remember that if using a PFBC access you MUST have a registration or Launch Permit.

Geneva Swamp
There is still a lot of littering going on at Custards Bridge on the swamp. Violators will be cited to the fullest extent. Also, someone has thrown scrap metal rods into the water at this location. These rods are lying on the low head dam. Anyone with information regarding this is asked to contact the region office at 814-337-0444.

Mercer County

Lake Wilhelm
There are still good catch reports of Walleye and bass. It seems like the stocking program is starting to show signs of success in its fourth year.

Note: All unpowered boats (canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, rowboats, etc.) launching or retrieving at PFBC access areas and DCNR state parks or forests must have a current boat registration (issued by any state), or PFBC Use Permit, or DCNR Launch or Mooring Permit.  For more information, visit http://fishandboat.com/registration.htm.” 

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Fishing and Boating Report – August 27, 2014
Crawford County

Conneaut Lake
The navigation buoys will be pulled for the season the week after Labor Day. All laws are still in affect even if the buoys are no longer there.

The boat traffic has started slowing down. After Labor Day anglers will have fewer skiers to deal with. In the fall, many locals say the Bluegills they catch are huge.

Pymatuning Reservoir
The fishing this summer has been really slow but with the cooler temperatures of fall weather coming, the fishing should pick up.  

Venango County

Allegheny River
The USGS depth gage in Franklin reflects a current water level of +/- 4’-01”, given 4.5” of rain in August to date. At present, the Allegheny River is just over 1’-0” above normal pool.  The water temperature is hovering at 73°Fahrenheit, which is a marked rebound from a low of 60° Fahrenheit during the week of August 16th. Smallmouth Bass hookups continue; catches were reported on artificial lures and crank baits. Walleye harvests continue due to cooler water temperatures. Catfish anglers have begun to return to their favorite haunts, due to river levels stabilizing during the week of August 23rd.  The new moon phase begins August 25th. During this phase many catfish anglers report the highest number of hook-ups at sunset on any combination of cut bait, chubs or live bait.

French Creek

The USGS depth gage in Utica reflects a current water level of 3’-0”, up about 2 inches since last report.  Recreational boating traffic (canoes/kayaks) tends to experience difficulty at this level due to low flows, so plan accordingly. 

Due to stabilizing water levels, angling activity continues. Bass and Walleye are the species of choice.

Oil Creek

The USGS depth gage in Rouseville reflects a current water level of +/- 2’-09”, which is down from a monthly high of 4’-06” on August 22nd.  Kayak traffic continues and recreational boat traffic is reminded of the ice control dam located adjacent SR 1007 within Oil Creek State Park (41.49129 N X 79.68545 W). Smallmouth Bass continue to be targeted around Rouseville and near Oil Creek’s confluence with the Allegheny River. Trout fishing remains viable due to the summer’s high precipitation and cool temperatures.  Oil Creek State Park is a popular local destination for many trout fishing enthusiasts.

Twomile Run Reservoir (Justus Lake)

Crappie were reported being caught throughout August. 

Additionally, remember that Twomile Run Reservoir/Justus Lake is governed under BIG BASS regulations.

ADDITIONAL TROUT ACTION OPPORTUNITIES
Anglers hungry for trout are encouraged to try their luck in:

  1. The dam area of Justus Lake (Twomile Run Reservoir) at around 20’-25’ depths.
  2. Twomile Run (Upper). This stream stays slightly cooler due to the bottom release occurring from Justus Lake (Twomile Run Reservoir).
  3. Dennison Run, a classified ‘wilderness trout waters’ located within the Kennerdell Tract of Clear Creek State Forest-- Clinton/Victory Township.
  4. Hemlock and Porcupine Creek(s) in President Township.
  5. Pithole Creek located in Allegheny and Cornplanter Township(s). 

Note: All unpowered boats (canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, rowboats, etc.) launching or retrieving at PFBC access areas and DCNR state parks or forests must have a current boat registration (issued by any state), or PFBC Use Permit, or DCNR Launch or Mooring Permit.  For more information, visit http://fishandboat.com/registration.htm.” 

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