PPL Holtwood Tailrace Update: After a 5-year closure due to the Holtwood hydroelectric plant expansion, public fishing access to the dam’s tailrace reopened on Monday, December 8. A new ADA compliant 42’ long by 10’ wide fishing pier gets anglers closer to the action. Improvements include a 16-space parking lot with three (3) handicapped parking spaces. Anglers can access the fishing pier on steps on the south side and a ramp access on the pier’s north side.
GPS INFO: For anglers new to the area, try using 482 Old Holtwood Road, Holtwood, PA to get there. Test your skills in landing an Ol’ Mooneye, aka a Walleye, from the new tailrace access.
Recreational and angling boaters should avoid the restricted zone around the Holtwood Dam marked by a shore-to-shore overhead cable and signage. Boaters in the restricted zone can be cited. Additionally, this same exclusion applies to boats within 100 yards of Exelon’s two hydroelectric generating facilities on this section of river and the Muddy Run Pumped Storage Facility. At the southern boundary of the Susquehanna River’s Conowingo Reservoir (also called Conowingo Pond), boats are restricted to within 400 yards of the Conowingo Dam.
Anglers who fish at any Lancaster or York County access areas downriver of the Holtwood Dam on the 14-mile section of the Susquehanna River, referred to as the Conowingo Reservoir, should study the seasons, sizes and daily limits for fish found at: http://fishandboat.com/fishpub/summary/conowingo.html
Reading these regulations show that the Conowingo Reservoir Regulations are different in the size/limits for fish from the Commonwealth Inland Waters Regulations. The only exception is for the size/limits for American Eel.
As catfish are popular on the Lower Susquehanna River pools, note that the daily limit for Channel Catfish on the Conowingo Reservoir is set at five (5). For fish that fall in the category “All Other Fish Species” not specifically listed, the season is open year-round with no minimum size or daily limit. Therefore, an angler may possess more than five (5) Flathead Catfish, but would be in violation with six (6) Channel Catfish in possession. Positively identify your catch!
The Conowingo Reservoir regulations were established by PFBC working in cooperation with Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources for Pennsylvania’s estimated 10-mile stretch of the Conowingo Reservoir. The regulations are consistent with Maryland’s regulations for seasons, sizes and limits.
Reciprocal Fishing Privileges between PA & Maryland: Per the 2015 Pennsylvania Summary of Fishing Regulations and Laws: Fishing Privileges in Boundary Waters - The following fishing license agreements apply to boundary waters. You must abide by all other rules and regulations of the state in which you are fishing and where you launch or retrieve your boat.
A PENNSYLVANIA or MARYLAND LICENSE is valid on the Conowingo Reservoir or Youghiogheny River Lake when fishing from a boat (excluding coves and tributaries). DOES NOT INCLUDE SHORE FISHING
In terms of the Conowingo Reservoir within PA borders, the greater section of the Susquehanna River is contained within Pennsylvania as can be seen on this map. The PA/MD borders falls somewhere between the 9 and 10 (river) miles mark.