Sign In | Create an Account | Welcome, . My Account | Logout | Subscribe | Product Reviews | Recipes | Home RSS

NW PA Fishing Report, Nov. 26, 2012

November 28, 2012
By Darl Black , Ohio Valley Outdoors

This report is provided by Darl Black and several sponsors: PA Great Lakes Region tourism; Black Knight Industries, home of Gamma Line and Wiegel Brothers Marine, Franklin. Connect to all counties at www.PaGreatLakes.comwww.

The NW PA Fishing Report provides timely angling information for Crawford, Erie, Mercer and Venango Counties covering all species and all waters open to the public. The fishing comments and photos are offered by regional tackle shops and area anglers, complied and published twice a month. The NW PA Fishing Report is based on experiences, observations and opinions of individual contributors; information sources are considered reliable but comments are not independently verified. If you would like to share your fishing experiences or photos from any waterway in the four counties, please email to Darl Black at In providing information or pictures, you are agreeing to it being posted in the Fishing Report and distributed electronically to media and websites.

What's biting in Crawford, Erie, Mercer and Venango counties?

Article Photos

Steelhead fisherman in Erie tributary. Photo by Darl Black

French Creek Flowing through all four counties

John Wilpula (Conneaut Lake) filed 11/20: "I made it out on the Creek on the 19th for an afternoon float with fellow members Wayne and Josh. Creek had settled down from the Hurricane Sandy rains, although here and there large trees had been dislodged and rearranged in the Creek. Water temp was barely 40 degrees. I managed to catch a single 16-inch smallmouth on a Venom Creature Bait dragged slowly across the bottom. That was it. However we did enjoy sightings of mink, several deer and bald eagle."

Jody Maurer (Maurer's Trading Post) filed 11-19: "Al Bell from Franklin reports the walleye and northern pike fishing is excellent on French Creek. Al caught 12 legal northern pike in French Creek in one day. Al's favorite rig that day was a chartreuse curly-tail jig tipped with a creek chub."

Fact Box

French Creek

Jody Maurer (Maurer's Trading Post) "Al Bell from Franklin reported the walleye and northern pike fishing was excellent on French Creek. He caught 12 legal northern pike in French Creek in one day. Al's favorite rig that day was a chartreuse curly-tail jig tipped with a creek chub."


Pymatuning Lake

Richter's General Store reports that angling activity on the lake over Thanksgiving holidays was minimal as most outdoor people were preparing for deer season. Regular diehard anglers have been making good catches of bluegills and a few crappies. However, walleye success is down.

Article Links

Chub Hornstien (Meadville) filed 11/19: "I've fish Pymatuning several times the last couple weeks searching for walleyes. Normally November is our best month of year for catching walleyes on blade baits. This year the legal-size fish are almost completely absent, and even the sub-legal ones are few and far between. I've fished the mornings, midday and right through sundown, but cannot catch anything noteworthy. I'm ready to throw in the towel. Dan Wielobob and I are headed to the Allegheny this coming week."

Conneaut Lake

Bob Hornstrom (Meadville) filed 11-18: "I attempted to fish Conneaut Lake today, the 20th, but encountered boat engine problems after launching. So I simply fished around Fireman's Beach on the electric motor since I could not run to my best smallmouth bass spots. I managed to land one big northern pike on a Rattle Trap."

Bryan Stuyvesant (Meadville) filed 11-17: "Darl and I fished for smallmouth bass on Conneaut Lake for about four hours today. Between us we had about 7 or 8 hits on jig-style lures, landing three smallmouths. The largest was about 3 pounds, taken on a tube jig. It was a slow, slow day blame it on the high pressure and bluebird skies."


Presque Isle Bay

Thomas Watral (Erie)

- Filed 11-25: "Today I went down to fish for perch at the Border Patrol Dock. I had the whole thing to myself even the bait stand was closed. I did very well, landing my limit of perch in 3 hours. The fish were 12 to 12 inches long; they hit minnows on crappie rigs and small jigs. Despite how cold it was, it was a fun day.

- Filed 11-24: "I started the day out fishing for perch on the South pier, landing eight perch in the 13-inch range on minnows. Then I went to the docks where waves and cold wind didn't reach me. I landed an additional 20 perch."

- Filed 11-20: "I went perch fishing at 5 AM, and had hit after hit, landing lots of 6 to 9 inch perch; they were hitting everything. I talked to man who had run out of bait; he had some perch in the 12 to 15 inch range."

Paul Stewart (Butler) filed 11-19: "My buddy and I did the same thing this weekend as last weekend. Drove to Erie for steelhead, but the creeks were very low and clear. So we opted for perch fishing in Presque Isle Bay. Fishing was better than last week; we landed about five dozen perch between the two of us, keeping 36 of the larger ones. The bite was very light; Berkley Fireline made the difference. We landed several doubles on our perch rigs."

Darl Black (Cochranton) filed 11-16: "On a trip to Erie tributaries to photograph steelhead anglers, I met up with Dave Lefebre on PIB to grab a couple pictures for an upcoming article. He had only been fishing a few minutes when I reached him on his cell phone, and during our conversations he landed a 2 pound largemouth bass. I met him at the sand ramp on Presque Isle State Park and grabbed the shots I needed. Dave said he was going back out to catch-and-release 49 more largemouth bass to make an even 50. But I didn't hear back from him, so I don't know if he succeeded or not with his goal."

Erie Tributaries

Ric Gauriloff (Trout Run Tackle) filed 11-26: "Anglers were doing better the last couple days on Elk at the Legion Hole, Boro Park and the Lower Tubes. Also, there are bunches of fish in lower section of Walnut. There appears to have been a fresh run into west side streams in recent days now we have those real black fish that came in early, some mid-color fish plus a bunch of small fresh silver ones. The hot fly has been Chartreuse Crystal Meth, along with small black nymphs in size 14 and 16. Single eggs if you are not fly fishing. There are a lot of fish in the streams but many anglers are frustrated that they can't catch them due to low and clear water. The bite seems to be for a short period of time each day and if you are not on the stream when it happens, you are not catching fish. Going into December, we could have some great fishingif we would get some rain to color the water and if the creeks don't ice over."

Elk Creek Sports filed 11-26: "The creeks remain low and clear. The little snow melt we had did nothing in adding water to the streams. Fishermen who know how to fish steelhead in low and clear conditions were enjoying moderate success. Small flies and live bait were working. Better fishing is low in the streams towards the mouth."

Grady Codd (Mars) filed 11-20: "I left school early and headed to Elk Creek for steelhead. The water was very low and clear with low numbers of fish compared to last week. I fished the McKean stretch for half a day with little luck, catching a total of 3 fish. Traditional steelhead flies failed to produce an interest from the steelies, and real eggs did nothing either. I caught one fish using a Lucky Craft RD-STX Jerkbait a lure I use for bass, pike and stripers. The other two steelies were taken on a Strike King Coffee Tube Jig. Seemed the fish wanted something they had not seen before!

Ed Phillips (New Castle) filed 11-19: "My wife and I went to 20 Mile Creek last Thursday afternoon and stayed overnight, and continued to fish on Friday. The stream was low and the fish count is also low compared to past years, but we managed to catch four nice steelhead. We found a nice school in one deep hole; my wife limited out with 3 fish on Thursday; all came on a blood dot. I didn't have a strike. We went back on Friday morning but there were two guys already at the hole. We went further downstream and found another school. I managed to get one fish out of that group. I was hoping or expecting a higher fish count after the rain we had earlier in the week but the results weren't there. I'm not sure if the fish are still in the lake or if this is all we are going to get this year."


Shenango Lake

Ken Smith (Sharon) filed 11-24: "The crappie bite on Shenango is in the deep water. I found them in 12 to 15 feet around sunken brush and stumps. My brother Rich and I took home over 30 keeper crappies in two trips last weekend. We were using jigs tipped with Berkley Crappie Nibbles. I'm putting the boat away this week. See you on the ice!"


Allegheny River

Scott Kinard (New Castle) filed 11-24: "It's no surprise the upper Allegheny River has been fishing very well. I've been on a few trips this past week for big smallies and the river did not disappoint. I landed many smallies with a number in the 4-pound range, and two that went almost 5 pounds. Venom Tubes, Venom Sweet Dreams, Venom Vibra-Max Blade Baits and All-Terrain Tackle Jigs all produced fish."

Marilyn Black (Cochranton) filed 11-23: "Dale Black, Darl and I headed to the river earlier today, Saturday, expecting the weather change (high pressure dropping with approaching snow storm) would trigger the big smallmouth. We got snookered, as the fish apparently shut down maybe the big bite was on Thanksgiving! We talked to Ken Pate who was pulling out the same time as Darl and I were leaving after fishing only two hours; Ken and his buddy had caught six bass. Dale hung out on the river to catch a few bass in the afternoon, including a 4.5 pounder."

Bill Logan (Titusville) filed 11-22: "I fished the river on Monday the 19th, landing two bass and 1 perch. On Wednesday the 21st I had ten hook-ups, landing 7 bass, and lost a big pike. Bass were taken on spinnerbaits, Galida Grubz and hair jigs. River bass fishing has been a lot better than steelheading this fall."

Louis Letterle (Franklin) filed 11-21: "I fished the Allegheny River on November 21 with Tim Kier of Titusville and Ken Dudash of Pittsburgh. We caught a dozen fish, mostly walleyes. Best walleye was 24 inches, but no large smallmouths. Most fish were caught on creek chubs and suckers. We noticed plenty of anglers hitting the river in the late afternoon the parking area at Franklin launch was almost full."

Ernie Pate (Butler) filed 11-21: "My brother Ken and I fished the Allegheny River near Oil City on Sunday the 18th. We caught 40 bass and two walleyes. I was up on Monday the 19th and Tuesday the 20th, catching 60 and 50 smallmouth respectively including some toads. Pictures included a couple 4-pound plus chunks note the difference in coloration. Most of our fish were caught on beaver-style baits."

Chub Hornstein (Meadville) filed 11-20: "Dan Wielobob and I fished the Oil City pool on the Allegheny for walleye today. We caught a few smallmouths during the afternoon, and then right at dusk we boated six nice legal walleyes on jigs tipped with minnows. It was our best day for walleye this fall."

Marilyn Black (Cochranton) filed 11-18: "Darl and I fished the Allegheny with Dale Black today for a couple hours in the afternoon. Between the three of us, we landed about 20 bass, with eight of them over 17 inches. All fish came on tubes."

Destin DeMarion (Grove City) filed 11-20: "I'm in love with the Allegheny River in the fall! I went out today and caught 20 smallmouths with my best five going over 20 pounds. I caught six bass around 4 pounds from one little spot. Most came on a tube jig, a Picasso Shake-E-Football Jig with craw, and a Fish Sense Binsky Blade in Sexy Shad. The Sexy Shad color is only available at My first two casts with the Binsky in Sexy Shad yielded back to back fish. I experimented with other colors and the fish would only eat the Sexy Shad."

Jody Maurer (Maurer's Trading Post filed 11-19): "The diehard fishermen are still fishing and doing great. Jeff Sehman and his son Nick only had about 1-1/2 hours to fish on the Allegheny above Franklin. They were drifting live shiners in about 20 feet of water. The lucky duo landed four 3- to 4-pound scrappy smallmouths, and lost about that many. They had great fun in a short period!"



I am looking for:
News, Blogs & Events Web