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Map highlighting counties in the Southeast RegionREGION COUNTIES -- Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia, Schuylkill (County Guide)

Reports compiled by Andrew Desko (adesko@pa.gov), Southeast Region Education Specialist, using information provided by Waterways Conservation Officers, Area Fisheries Managers and other PFBC staff.

 

Fishing and Boating Report – March 4, 2015

Reminder: The PFBC does not monitor ice thickness.  Ice thickness and conditions can vary greatly across the lake. Use caution as you head out onto the ice. A life jacket and a set of ice awls can be extremely important if you fall though the ice. Remember SAFETY FIRST: http://fishandboat.com/safety.htm

Remember that all Approved Trout Waters here in the Southeast Region are closed to fishing from March 1 to the Regional Opening Day of Trout Season, this year at 8am on April 4. You are by definition deemed to be fishing in Approved Trout Waters if you have fishing equipment within 25 feet of a stream, lake or pond that is closed to fishing. There are a handful of Approved Trout Waters that are open to year round fishing and you can find these in your summary guide under that heading. No trout may be taken or possessed on these waters from March 1 to the opening of the Regional Opening Day of Trout Season.

Berks County

The calendar says that it is March, but maybe it is March for Alaska?

The prolonged winter weather has frozen many creeks, so please be sure to check our trout stocking schedule for any cancellations and changes. With the bad comes the good, It is still a great ice fishing season. Don’t pack the equipment away, as the bite continues to be good at all area lakes.

There are ice opportunities for trout at Kaercher Creek Lake, Scott’s Run Lake, and Antietam Lake.

Lake Ontelaunee is always good for a big bass in the Peter’s Creek arm, and work the area along Route 73 for crappie.

Fish the upper channels of Blue Marsh Lake for a shot at a big Muskellunge.

Now that we are into March, be extra careful on the ice as the temperatures will eventually start to warm. Don’t forget, the Tulpehocken Creek (special regulations area) below Blue Marsh Lake is open to year round fishing (no bait or keeping fish), and it is scheduled to be stocked on March 11.

Good Luck!

Bucks County

Nockamixon Lake has been receiving heavy ice fishing pressure in the areas of Three Mile Run, Haycock Area and around the Tohickon Boat Launch. Anglers have been reporting good catches of panfish, including some notable crappies. Angles targeting large gamefish, such as Muskellunge and Striped Bass, have had success using large live baits in 12 to 25 feet of water. Try fishing over the artificial fish structure and down trees along the bank. If the large lake seems like too much water to cover, try nearby Lake Towhee. Towhee has a nice panfish population as well as Chain Pickerel and Largemouth Bass.  If heading to Lake Nockamixon or Lake Towhee, keep in mind both Lakes are enrolled in the Agency’s Big Bass Program, so special seasons and size limits apply year-round.  http://fishandboat.com/fishpub/summary/bigbass.html

 PFBC WCOs have checked several anglers at the Giving Pond Recreation area catching a nice variety of panfish as well. There is submerged structure and trees that provide shelter for these fish. Just remember that fishing near this structure also provides shelter for fish to hide, and once hooked, offering ice anglers a unique challenge getting their catch out of the branches. Continue to use caution going out on the ice as the spring thaw arrives. Don’t go ice fishing alone, and make sure someone knows when you expect to arrive home after your trip. Wear a PFD!

http://fishandboat.com/anglerboater/2011ab/vol80num1_janfeb/play4thickness.pdf

S. Chester County

Ice anglers at Struble Reservoir are still doing well on Yellow Perch and sunfish using fathead minnows fished under a tip-up about a foot off the bottom. The best area seems to be slightly left off the boat ramp and 100 to 200 yards out. Make sure the ice is safe before you go out. One nice 20” Channel Catfish was caught on a larger minnow fished the same way.

The Meadowview Farm, aka Hutchinson Farm, section of Elk Creek was not stocked at this time due to inclement weather conditions restricting our ability to enter that section of stream. Please plan accordingly for the upcoming trout season. 

For those of you in S. Chester Co. who would like to continue to fish while the stocked trout streams are closed, you can do so in the Middle Branch White Clay Creek Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only (DHALO) area (click on link for regulations in this section). This 1.7 mile long stretch runs from the Good Hope Road Bridge downstream to the confluence with the White Clay East Branch in the White Clay Park. The waters at the confluence and below, as well as above the Good Hope Bridge, are closed to fishing, so make sure that you know where you are. To get to the Middle Branch of the White Clay DHALO, find 896 South and follow it to Indiantown Rd and turn left. Go to the fourth stop sign. You will see the White Clay Nature Center on your left and the Ranger Station just beyond that also on your left. You can stop in the Ranger Station for a map and very detailed information. From the stop go straight ahead passing the Ranger Station on your left, then a very old, very historic home on your right, then to the second dirt lane to the right, just before you go over the bridge. This is parking lot number two. You are now at the end of the DHALO. The bridge you turned in front of is about 150 yards upstream of the confluence. The confluence is the bottom or end of the DHALO. Court precedent for this district has found that you are fishing where your bait is. In other words, do not stand in the DHALO and cast into the Approved Trout Waters, or allow your bait to flow into the Approved Trout Waters, as you would be in violation. From the parking lot work your way upstream to the bridge on Sharpless Road at parking lot number 2. The White Clay Creek is one of the more scenic streams in Southern Chester County and is a great place to spend a day fishing, so don't forget to bring your camera along.

In N. Chester Co., you can continue to fish in three different Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only areas. These are East Branch Brandywine Creek, 1.2 mile stretch from SR 4019 (Dorlans Mill Road) downstream to SR 4004 (Dowlin Forge Road). Pickering Creek, 1.5 miles from SR 1019 (Charlestown Road) downstream to 330 yards upstream of the railroad bridge. West Valley Creek starts 1.2 miles at the confluence with the unnamed tributary (locally known as Colebrook Run), which is located upstream of SR 2020 (Boot Road), downstream to 0.25 miles of the railroad tunnel.

The White Clay Creek East Branch, Section 2, from Woodview Road to the White Clay Creek State Preserve boundary and the White Clay Creek, Section 1, from the confluence of the East Branch White Clay and the Middle Branch White Clay to the Delaware State line will be stocked with trout on Friday, March 13. The stocking truck will meet us at the Avondale Post Office at noon. We still have very little help and are always looking for more, so give a little something back to the resource that we all enjoy and come out and help us get these fish in the water. Thanks. See details for meeting time and location here: http://fbweb.pa.gov/stocking/TroutStockingDetails_GIS.aspx

The Big Elk Creek, Section 1, and the East Branch Big Elk, Section 2, have been stocked with trout. You can find the details on these sections here: http://fbweb.pa.gov/stocking/TroutStockingDetails_GIS.aspx Select Chester County in the dropdown menu and press Go under step 4.

Little Cocalico Creek, Muddy Creek & Rock Run are to be stocked on Tuesday, March 17. The meeting place is the Cloister Shopping Center at the intersection of SR 322 and SR 272 at 11:30am.  If you have not taken a child to a stocking yet, consider doing it, they will have a great time.

We need stocking help in S. Chester Co. Only eight people braved the cold and ice this week to come out and help us stock. Of those eight, one was a Deputy who helped with traffic. Two had medical issues which makes it hard for them to carry 30 pound buckets of fish. One just followed along because he likes to write down where we stock, and two that we had to send ahead to cut holes in the ice at a few of the stocking locations. It is not really reasonable for those of you who do not come out to help to always rely on your fellow sportsmen to do all the stocking. Consider coming out on our next stocking and help get these fish in the water so that we can have a great Regional Opening Day of Trout Season.

Fishing and Boating Report – February 25, 2015
Changes to Striped Bass Regulations
Anglers should be aware of several changes to striped bass regulations in the Delaware River and Delaware Estuary which will take effect March 1 in order to meet requirements of the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission (ASMFC). The changes apply only to the Pennsylvania side of the river and estuary. The regulation changes include a new creel limit and new slot limits  Information about those changes can be found in the Commission’s recent News Release.

Reminder: The PFBC does not monitor ice thickness.  Ice thickness and conditions can vary greatly across the lake. Use caution as you head out onto the ice. A life jacket and a set of ice awls can be extremely important if you fall though the ice. Remember SAFETY FIRST: http://fishandboat.com/safety.htm

S. Berks County

Plenty of anglers have been hitting the hard water, and catching some nice fish.
The frigid temperatures has not stopped bass, trout, Muskellunge, Northern Pike, crappie, catfish, and panfish from striking a variety of baits and lures sent down ice holes.

The top area has been Lake Ontelaunee, in the Peter’s Creek arm, which always attracts a big crowd. Just remember if you’re going to venture out on the ice be safe and know the proper thickness. Ice may not be the same thickness all over so use caution, and try to stay away from stickups like brush, plants, or logs as the ice will be less thick near debris.  Remember to always let someone know where you are going ice fishing and how long you plan on being gone. 

Give Kaercher Creek Lake in Hamburg a try if you prefer a smaller lake, and a good shot at picking up a nice bass or big Rainbow Trout.

Fish the upper coves at Blue Marsh Lake for a chance at hooking into a trophy Muskellunge.

Jigging is the most popular method of fishing, but setting out a line of tip ups baited with large minnows usually catches big fish. No need to spend the day cutting holes, usually just varying the depth of baits and lures is all it takes to get on fish.

Bundle up the kids and take them along, and you’ll be surprised how much fun they’ll have.

Hard to believe that trout stocking is just around the corner, and spring is on the way.

Good luck!

S. Chester County

The Little Cocalico Creek, Muddy Creek, Rock Run will be stocked with trout on Tuesday March 17th at 11:30. The meeting place is the Cloister Shopping Center at the intersection of Route 322 and Route 272. We could really use some help, please consider helping us stock and bring a youngster, they will have a great time!

The White Clay Creek East Branch, Section 3 from the White Clay Creek Preserve Boundary to the mouth and the White Clay Creek Middle Branch Section 2 from the T364 Bridge at Good Hope Road to Guernsey Rd will be stocked with Trout on Tuesday March 10. The truck will meet us at the Avondale Post Office at noon. We could really use some more help. Please consider coming out and lending a hand. Thanks.

The Middle Branch White Clay Creek Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only (DHALO) section was stocked with trout on Tuesday, February 24. Thank you to all the individuals who came out to help and special thanks to the White Clay Fly Fishers for their help. The stocked section is a 1.7 mile stretch that runs from Good Hope Road at 39 45' 43.7" North, 75 47' 03.9" West to the confluence with the East Branch White Clay in the White Clay Creek Preserve at 39 44' 57.7" North, 75 46' 10.4" West. Due to the frigid temperatures and ice, it was not possible to float stock. We stocked the only two points of open water we could find with about half the fish at each location. The points that were stocked are Good Hope Road at 39 45' 43.7" North, 75 47' 03.9" West, and the Iron Bridge on London Tract in the center of the section at 39 45' 16.2" North, 75 46' 51.6" West. The Bridge on Sharpless Road at 39 45' 01.9" North, 75 46' 16.3" West would be the lower limit of the stocked area. Two maps of the DCNR White Clay Creek Preserve are available, regular and large print at http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/stateparks/parks/
whiteclaycreek/whiteclaycreek_maps.aspx

To get to the Middle Branch White Clay Creek DHALO section, take Route 41 to just south of Avondale and turn south on Penn Green Road. Follow Penn Green Road to Good Hope Road and turn right on Good Hope. Go past Bank Road and Crestwood Road and you will come to the top of the DHALO section of the Middle Branch White Clay. Limited Parking is available on either side of the bridge. More parking is available in the lot near the Iron Bridge at London Tract in the center of the section. For more information on The White Clay Creek Preserve, you can call the park office at 610-274-2900. The park office is located at 39 44' 48.1" North, 75 46' 27.2" West. The nature center is located at39 44' 46.4" North and 75 46' 29.6" West.
Click here for regulations for this section: Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only Be mindful of these regulations if you decide to go fishing there. Open to year round fishing, no closed season. A current fishing license with a trout stamp is required when fishing in a Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only area at all times. Fishing hours according to the 17 PA Code, Subpart B, State Parks, states
(a) General. Except as otherwise provided in subsections (b)--(g), as otherwise provided in this chapter, and as otherwise posted, State Parks are open to the public daily only from sunrise until sunset.

If you wish to see the complete DCNR 17 PA Code, Subpart B, State parks, you can find it at http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/ucmprd1/
groups/public/documents/document/d_001192.pdf

The DCNR's White Clay Creek Preserve http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/stateparks/parks/whiteclaycreek.aspx

Delaware County

Most of the Fly Fishing Only stretch at Ridley Creek is iced over with an occasional angler fishing at the falls. 

Don’t forget about the Mentored Fishing Day on March 28.  If you plan on participating, keep in mind that the main branch of Chester Creek (section 4) and lower Ridley Creek (city of Chester) will NOT be stocked with trout until March 30. 

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Fishing and Boating Report – February 23, 2015
The Fly Fishing Show returns to the Lancaster County Convention Center on Saturday, February 28 from 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 1 from 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  Scouts under 16 in uniform are admitted free of charge.

The International Fly Fishing Film Festival returns with the show this year, and it will be screened on Saturday, February 28.

For show & film festival ticket purchase information and complete event information, click on the following link http://flyfishingshow.com/lancaster-pa.

The show is well attended and well presented, including casting demonstrations as well as fly tying with notables Bob Clouser, Joe Humphreys and Lefty Kreh.

The local Donegal Chapter of Trout Unlimited will have an informational exhibit.

The PFBC will have an exhibit with many of our popular and informative complimentary publications.  Additionally, PA Fishing Licenses will be available for purchase.  The Lancaster County District Officer will be staffing the exhibit on Sunday, and will be available to highlight local trout fishing opportunities, specifically on the county’s two Special Regulation Catch and Release Fly-Fishing Only waters – West Branch Octoraro Creek and the Donegal Creek. 

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Fishing and Boating Report – February 18, 2015
Reminder: The PFBC does not monitor ice thickness.  Ice thickness and conditions can vary greatly across the lake. Use caution as you head out onto the ice. A life jacket and a set of ice awls can be extremely important if you fall though the ice. Remember SAFETY FIRST: http://fishandboat.com/safety.htm

Winter is dragging on and along with the snow some bitter temperatures as well. I’m not sure about you but I can't wait to wet a line, a line that doesn't freeze to my hand. It won't be long now, stocking is right around the corner and the early trout opener is right after that. In the meantime a trip to the Greater Philadelphia Outdoor Show in Oaks, Thursday February 26th to Sunday March 1st might be the answer to what to do in the meantime. There will be presentations on anything that has to do with the outdoors, a trout fishing pond, a 5000 gallon aquarium, a rock wall, archery range, as well as vendors that will have all the newest and greatest of outdoor gear, including boats and fishing equipment.  The physical address for the show is 100 Station Avenue, Oaks, PA 19456. For more information go to http://www.sportshows.com/philadelphia/index.html or for directions to the show go to http://www.sportshows.com/philadelphia/directions.html .

On Sunday February 22, 2015, The Delaware River Shad Fishermen’s Association will host a Fishing Flea Market. The show, which will have both hunting and fishing items, will be held at the Sewyco Fire Company Social Hall from 8am until 1pm. The physical address for the hall is 3621 Old Philadelphia Pike, Bethlehem, PA 18015. For more information call 610-691-8518 or visit the webpage at http://drsfa.org/

The Calvary Outdoors Expo & Sportsman Show will be held on Saturday March 7th from 10am until 5pm at the Calvary Church, 820 Route 113, Souderton, PA 18964. There will be over 100 vendors with the latest and greatest of fishing equipment, fishing workshops including a casting competition and critter show for the kids and a fishing simulator too. For more information you can go to the website at www.calvaryexpo.com .

The Lehigh Valley Sportsman Show will be held on March 6th, 7th & 8th at the Allentown Fairgrounds Ag-Hall, 19th & Liberty Streets in Allentown, PA from 1pm– 8pm on Friday, 10am to 9pm on Saturday & 10am to 5pm on Sunday. Along with all the must have fishing and boating supplies, you will get a chance to talk with guides, taxidermists, saltwater fishing charter operators. For more information, go to the website at www.lehighvallysportsmanshow.com .

The Alburtis Sportsmen's will host a Fishing Flea Market on March 1st from 8am until 2pm at the Alburtis Area Community Center, 220 West 2nd Street, Alburtis, PA. 18011. New and used fishing and hunting items will be featured including vintage and collectibles. Bring your vintage lures and have them appraised for free. For more information, call 610-966-2195.

Chester County

CrappieAndrew McMullen caught this awesome 13.5 inch Crappie at Struble Reservoir along with some other smaller ones. His fishing partner caught some walleyes through the ice as well. Try small fathead minnows fished under a tip-up or bobber approximately one foot off the bottom. Crappie jigs work well for the crappies, work them about a foot off the bottom as well.

The Camp Cadet program will be held at Camp Saginaw in Chester County the week of August 15th. The program that was started in 1991 for 50 boys had 97 participants last year, both boys and girls. The program is a weeklong stay over hosted by local law enforcement that is free to the participants. To apply for the program you must live in Chester County and be between 12 and 14 years of age. The purpose of the program is to promote a positive relationship between law enforcement and the children in our community. The camp brings members from different backgrounds together to form teams and to promote self-esteem and a positive attitude. Part of the program includes fishing classes, a water safety program as well as a smart angler program. The deadline for applications for the camp is May 15th. For more information you can go to the website at http://www.cccampcadet.org.

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