Tioga County’s ice fishing season is in full swing! Anglers have been fishing Hills Creek, Hamilton, and Beechwood Lakes. Over the past several days, the air temperature has stayed at or below 20F; so ice has continued to build on county lakes!
NOTE: As the ice builds on the lakes, there will be patches of unstable ice. As always, CHECK ice thickness and safety before you head out on the ice.
Cowanesque; Hammond; Tioga Lakes – The Army Corps lakes are frozen over; but are not ready for ice fishing yet. Another week of ice building should bump them up to “fishable” status!
Beechwood Lake – Anglers are catching trout using paste baits and live minnows under tip-ups. Areas near the boat launches seem to be the best location to catch trout.
Panfish are being caught using small jigs, tipped with waxworms, mousies, and/or maggots.
Hills Creek Lake - Fish are being caught in 6-12 feet of water. Anglers are catching Yellow Perch using live minnows under tip-ups and jigging waxworms.
Bluegills are being caught using waxworms or maggots on small jigs and spoons. Successful jig colors are white, chartreuse, silver, and gold.
A few anglers are catching fish after dark using glow jigs tipped with waxworms.
Pickerel are active and are taking live shiners and/or fathead minnows.
Kyle Stewart caught some nice Chain Pickerel, Yellow Perch, and Bluegill recently from Hills Creek Lake. Congratulations, Kyle!
(photo by Kyle Stewart)
Josh Ditzler recently caught this tasty Yellow Perch at Hills Creek Lake
(photo by Josh Ditzler)
Kris Bretz reeled in a Chain Pickerel while ice fishing on Hills Creek Lake. Nice job, Kris!
(photo provided by Kris Bretz)
Another fine Yellow Perch caught by Josh Ditzler. Congratulations, Josh!!
(photo provided by Josh Ditzler)
Hamilton Lake- Action has been slow; but anglers are catching a few panfish toward the dam using waxworms.
Rose Valley Lake - There were approximately 30-40 anglers fishing the lake on Monday, January 18, 2016.
Anglers are catching Largemouth Bass, Chain Pickerel, and Yellow Perch using medium shiners under tip-ups in 8-13 feet of water. One angler caught a Largemouth Bass measuring 16”!
With cold temperatures predicted for the rest of this week, ice should continue to build.
Jordan Allison with a nice Largemouth Bass caught recently from Rose Valley Lake
(photo provided by Jordan Allison)
Ice anglers on Rose Valley Lake
(photo by Jordan Allison)
Foster Joseph Sayers Lake – The Hunter Run Cut portion of the lake is iced over. Anglers are catching Yellow Perch and Bluegills.
NOTE: The main lake only has a thin layer of ice covering it. With the temperatures remaining at or below 30F the rest of the week, ice should continue to build. As always, use caution and CHECK the ice prior to going on it.
Spring Creek – The water level and color is perfect for fishing. Streamers, nymphs, and egg patterns are working best. Target the banks and slack water. When possible, try to get your fly, spoon, or bait as close to the stream bottom as you can.
Fly patterns that are working include peach and/or pink egg patterns, walt’s worms, black/brown slumpbusters, and bead head pheasant tails.
USGS Spring Creek water level at Houserville, PA : http://waterdata.usgs.gov/pa/nwis/uv?site_no=01546400
Penns Creek – The stream is still running a bit high, is a little off color, and has a temp of about 40F.However, if you are willing to brave the cold it should fish well.
Nymphs and streamers will work best. Fish early to late afternoon, and get your flies as close to the bottom as you can. If you are using streamers, get as close to the banks and structure/woody debris as you can.
Patterns that should work are Hares Ear (14-16); bead head prince nymph (8-12); Olive, brown, or black scuplin patterns (4-10).
USGS Penns Creek at Penns Creek, PA: http://waterdata.usgs.gov/pa/nwis/uv?site_no=01555000
Fishing Creek – Water levels are good. Anglers that brave the cold temperatures are catching trout using peach/pink egg patterns and pink/red worm patterns.