Trout season in Pennsylvania is almost upon us again and fishermen throughout the state will begin to start thinking about where and how they will catch these cunning fish this year. The first day in 18 southeastern counties including Juniata, Perry, Dauphin, Schuylkill, Lehigh, Cumberland, Franklin, Adams, York, Lebanon, Berks, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester, Delaware, and Philadelphia to the 31st of March 2018. The rest of Pennsylvania the opening day is still the 14th of April 2018.
Steelhead can strip a fly reel to it's backing in one run down the stream is one of the most sought after fish with a fly rod and rightfully so. These fish are pound for pound one of the hardest fighting fish I have had the pleasure of fishing for and catching. Steelhead fishing is an absolute addiction for many and has caused a many of restless nights thinking about getting up at the crack of dawn to chase these silver bullets.
Steelhead fishing can often mean fishing in cold temperatures for fish that are holding to tight to the bottom. Most of my best days of steelheading are on days that the weather is terrible from blowing snow to cold rain to wind that blows your fly line backwards. Often on these days steelhead are hugging the bottom and not willing to move to far to attack a fly.
Elk Creek in Girard PA feeding into Lake Erie is the largest steelhead stream in Pennsylvania and is also the most popular steelhead stream in the State of Pennsylvania. This stream is a beautiful limestone stream that holds massive amounts of steelhead during the fall, winter, and spring months.
Lake Erie steelhead fishing is one of the best fisheries in the world, with large runs of steelhead from late September till around the end of May in the larger streams. Streams like Elk Creek in Girrard Pennsylvania offer some fantastic fishing with lots of unspoiled nature; Elk Creek gets one of the largest runs of steelhead and also sees one of the largest runs of fishermen. Fly fishermen on Elk Creek doing well fishing with streams swinging them in the tailouts and heads of holes. Also when the pressure is on at Elk Creek changing to sucker spawn, crystal meth, or nymphs can be the ticket fished under a strike indicator.
Oak Orchard in New York is a fishermen's heaven when it comes to big steelhead, brown trout, and salmon. From the early months of fall to the late months of spring trout call Oak Orchard in New York home. Brown trout in The Oak can range anywhere from a few pounds to 20 pounds and the Chinook Salmon run way over 20 lbs, but the fastest fish in water is the steelhead which takes off like a rocket when hooked.
Cattaraugus Steelhead run from Silver Creek NY at the mouth of the creek feeding into Lake Erie to Springville NY and is one of the most beautiful Steelhead Streams on the east coast, but also one of the least understood. The Catt runs the State of New York and also through the Seneca Nation of Indians land which runs from the town of Gowanda NY to the I-90 bridge towards the mouth of the river. These two locations require two different fishing licenses to fish in either NY State or the Seneca Nation of Indians.
One of the most useful fishing tools I have found that allows me to discover when to go fishing and when to stay home is the USGS Real-time water data website. You can discover the real time flows of streams and rivers across the US via any Internet connection. This information is especially handy when fishing for trout or steelhead and deciding if a stream is to high or to low to fish and will give you an advantage on knowing what flies or types of lures you should have with you.
In the not so distant future fishermen across the Great Lakes will begin to prepare for the spring run of steelhead that will occur in a large majority of the tributaries of the Great Lakes. Often the steelhead that run in the spring are larger and more mature than the steelhead that run in the fall in the tributaries. Fishing for steelhead in the spring will begin as soon as the ice clears from the streams and often will steelhead will continue to run until the first part of June.
Fly fishing can be summed up in one word "Awesome" It's a sport that everybody can enjoy and learn to love. Fly fishing is not necessarily an expensive sport but to the contrary it is one of the least expensive fishing techniques to get started in. You don't need a boat; you don't need a ton of gear; just fly rod, reel, line, and flies. The one thing you do need to be a successful fly fishermen is patience and a wiliness to learn. Fly fishing is not something you decide to do one day and automatically your a professional. Fly fishing can take a lifetime to master, but you can learn to be a very successful fly fishermen with some practice and patience.
Steelhead Fishing has become one of the fastest growing sports in the North East due to the massive stocking programs by the states of Pennsylvania, New York, and Ohio. With this fast growing sport is a large fly fishing community looking to master the waters of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. And everybody is looking for the magic fly that will catch more steelhead than any other fly. Guess What? There's no magic fly out there!
Fly Fishing can often be tough, but one thing that will dramatically increase your fly fishing success is by utilizing a dropper. Fly fishing with a dropper is fishing with two flies on the same leader. There are several ways you can successfully use a dropper rig to improve your catch rate from using a dropper with a dry fly to dead drifting steelhead on your favorite great lakes tributary. Here are some dropper rig tips and techniques that will improve your fly fishing success.
As spring arrives also trout fishing will be on the top of many anglers list of things to do this spring. Fishing for trout is generally done on streams and rivers, but I have found that you can catch some real monster trout in the lakes that trout streams feed into. Many streams especially here in my home state of Pennsylvania have trout streams that dump into a lake and often these lakes are stocked with trout as well as the stream being stocked with trout.
So we're approaching trout season in many states across the country including Pennsylvania, New York, and other states that stock trout in streams for anglers. Stock trout are often easy to catch and will bite almost anything but there are several things you can do to increase your catch this year for the first day of trout season.