|Northern Columbia and Luzerne Counties
Cold weather this week may set ice on area ponds finally and hopefully this cold trend will continue to grow ice. A lot of anglers are itching to get out on the hardwater and we may get there quickly if this weather keeps up. With that in mind, we all must consider our safety when we do venture out. Go with a group or at least one partner or at the very least let someone know your plans. Make sure you cut a test hole before getting too far from the shore and wear a PFD. New line and terminal tackle is also a small investment to make to avoid losing a big fish later on.
Throughout the month of December fishing in the Susquehanna River was excellent. While there weren’t a lot of anglers, those who made it out were rewarded with quality catches of walleye and smallmouth bass.
The weather has changed and area lakes have begun to freeze, but there is not yet any safe ice for fishing. If the weather forecasts are accurate, we can anticipate ice on are lakes in the not too distant future. Be careful not to get too anxious and take foolish chances before the ice becomes safe.
Southern Wallenpaupack District
Ice fishermen are having very good success catching chain pickerel in some of the smaller and mid-sized impoundments using live bait; ice thickness varies greatly from place to place and most bodies of water do not have thick enough ice to be considered safe.
Southern Luzerne and Southern Columbia Counties
Those brave enough to withstand the frigid temperatures on the Susquehanna River, are reporting success with smallmouth bass and walleyes utilizing 3-4 inch twister tail grubs, or live bait.
Along the streams and impoundments though, there has been virtually no activity.
It seems that most anglers are in a state of flux, eagerly awaiting ice on local lakes. Fear not, with the sudden drop in temperatures it will not be much longer until we have fishable ice. Now is the time for those last minute checks and preparations of your ice fishing gear, to make certain all is ready.
Anglers, who are fishing the open water, are reminded again of the mandatory life jacket wear. This regulation pertains to boats under 16 feet, and all canoes and kayaks, from November 01 through April 30th. This regulation has been in effect for over two years now, so most should be aware of it.
There will be a Basic Boating Class held at Nescopeck State Park on March 7th. A boating Safety Certificate is required for anyone born January 1, 1982 or after, who operates a watercraft with a motor 26hp or greater. As well as anyone who operates a personal watercraft (jet ski).
Northern Wayne County
Ice fishing has started as fishing activity is being observed on a number of frozen lakes. Many waterways still have a large portion of open water. Anglers venturing out on the hard water may want to consider wearing a life jacket. Anglers are having a lot success using jigs tipped with meal and wax worms. Good catchers of bluegill, perch and crappie are being reported and observed at Belmont Lake and Prompton Dam.