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NWPA Fishing Report, 6-29-16

July 1, 2016
By Darl Black ,

This Report is brought to you by PA Great Lakes Region tourism with additional sponsorship from Wiegel Brothers Marine and Gamma Fishing.

We answer the question "What's biting in the lakes, streams and rivers of Crawford, Erie, Mercer and Venango counties?"

French Creek Flowing through all four counties

Article Photos

Keith with Erie walleye (Dutch Fork Custom Lures photo)

Angler Al (Franklin); filed 6-21: "My brother Steve and I fished French Creek during the late hours of day on the 21st. Using an Original Rapala Minnow and Rebel Crayfish plug, we managed a few smallmouth bass. The water level is extremely low and the weeds are thick already."


Pymatuning Lake

Dave @ Richter's Bait & Tackle; filed 6-27: "Crappies are coming from deep structure. Some walleyes are being taken on worm harnesses and Berkley Flicker Shads during the day. But the best walleye bite is after dark. Dutch and his two buddies stopped by with 14 'eyes the other night taken on Bomber Long A over the weeds. Another customer stopped by with report of two muskies a 30-incher and 40-incher; he was fishing for muskies. For the 4th of July Weekend, we are having special prices on out KVD Spinning Combos; Rapala Fillet Knives; and our Plano Tackle Bag System."

Norm @ Jamestown Marina; filed 6-27: "Fishing reports were a little light this past weekend. It was a little too hot for a lot of anglers to be out. I did see a good number of bluegills, crappies and of course catfish come in through the marina. Most cats were channels, but there were a few flatheads. Not much on the walleyes over the weekend. If you are thinking about renting a boat or pontoon sometime during the coming 4th of July weekend, better get a reservation in ASAP. We are booking up fast."

Hooker @ Hill's County Store; filed 6-27: "All reports are summer patterns offshore with some fish starting to come from emergent weeds. Mike & Mellissa took their second trip this year on Hookers Fishing Taxi. Mike caught his first walleye ever and we were treated to a spectacle rarely seenWhile fishing an offshore hump for crappies we had a 4-1/2 foot musky try to take three of our thrashing crappies at the surface. The third crappie was close to 14 inches and the musky slashed it right beside the boat. An awesome memory. For the 4th of July Weekend, Hills Country Store will be having the last Crawfish Boil on July 2nd; come hungry, come thirsty and leave with a smile on your face!"

Laurie @ Duck & Drake; filed 6-27: "It was a slow weekend fishing wise. All I had were catfish and bluegill reports. But the walleye bite is about to change time to start trolling deep water with plugs. For the 4th of July Weekend we are having a Sale on Reels! And don't forget our Catfish Contest from July 15th to 17th. To enter, just bring your catfish catch to the store no entry fee."

Becky @ Gateway Tackle; filed 6-27: "It was too hot for most folks to be out over the weekend. But we had some reports of bluegills and walleyes from the North End Stumps, and of course catfish everywhere. One customer reported 17 feet was good for walleyes using both Storm Hot-n-Tot and crawler harnesses. For the 4th of July Weekend we will have a sale on many of our tackle boxes."

Patti @ Poff's Place; filed 6-27: "Reports are they are still getting walleyes on the North Stumps but you've got to work for them. Some guys are getting limits, others just 2 or 3 'eye. Worms are doing the trick either on harnesses or on a jig. Crappies are slow. Catfish are on. Bass are in the weedbeds."

Sydney @ Robinson Bait; filed 6-27: "Water Puppets, Water Puppets, Water Puppets that's the hot jig up here right now. A Water Puppet is a swimming jig that has a unique wobble. Tip with a minnow for crappie or perch, or a crawler for walleye or catfish. They are catching everything with it. Some of our bass fishing customers have commented that they are catching walleyes in the weedbeds during the day. Another customer told of catching a mess of crappies near Fries Road Access; crappies still had eggs in them."

Bill Cusick (Greenville); filed 6-27: "I've been pulling crawler harnesses on the south end of Pymatuning and catching the occasional nice walleye such as the one in the accompanying picture. But I've been catching more channel cats than anything."

RJ Graham @ Graham Jigs (Tionesta); filed 6-19: "On the 19th, we caught a bunch of crappies on BPS Squirmin' Squirt Tube in white pearl/blue fleck fished on a 1/6 ounce big bead using Gamma Touch Line. Crappies were in 14 feet of water. Used sonar to find the schools of fish then dropped to them. We also caught bass by flipping the weeds with 1/2-ounce Reins Tungsten Jig with beaver plastic body on Gamma Torque Line. We also got some nice bass casting into bass busting schools of bait. And some walleyes too."

Ken Smith (Sharon); filed 6-14: "I fished Pymatuning on the 12th around Jamestown area. I got quite a few good-size crappies in 13 feet of water by hang gliding jigs tipped with nibbles. Found some bedding bluegills along a 5-foot weedline, too. Took home 15 that were 8 inches or better."

Bob's Place @ Jamestown, PA: Remember out Pymatuning Walleye Tournament on July 16th. Call Randy at 724-456-4511 for details.

Darl @ Fishing with Darl Black Guide Service: "Since the last Fishing Report, I continue to instruct guests in catching deepwater early summer crappies on Pymatuning. We are getting mixed bags of black and white crappies. The average size black crappies we catch are 8 to 11 inches with a few larger one. The white crappies run a little longer, but are slimmer; black crappies provide a thicker fillet. I will add trips to Conneaut Lake for bluegills/crappies in mid-July. I will also offer C&R bass fishing trips to Conneaut Lake and Lake Wilhelm.

Conneaut Lake

Jim Hall (Meadville); filed 6-24: "I fished Conneaut Lake on the 20th, 22nd and 24th of June. Early morning bite started at 5:30 am with nice bull 'gills in 5 to 10 feet of water around weeds. After 9 am, the big ones must have moved out because they were few and far between after that. Everything is hitting on Bobby Garland Slab Slay'r in Junebug (purple body with chartreuse tail). Thinking about trying Wilhelm for musky."


Lake Erie

Rich @ Erie Sports Store; filed 6-27: "Perch fishing has been spotty; some boats go out and get virtually no perch while others get their limitsoften fishing in the same general area. On June 22, three of us went out of Walnut to 52 feet of water and caught our limit. See attached photo. Then on Sunday, June 26, I took my two grandsons and nephew out all we caught were 3 perchfishing near friend with three people in his boat they caught 70. Walleye fishing is all over the placeanywhere from 25 to 60 feet from what I hear. Fish early for best results."

Tim @ North East Marina; filed 6-27: "I would rate the walleye fishing on the east side as good+ with charter boats bringing in 18 to 20 fish. Walleyes are in 42 to 60 feet of water this side of the mountain, down 38 to 40 feet. Some eyes are coming on plugs but worm harnesses are best especially in black and purple. Perch fishing is slowrating it 'slow minus.' Perch bite is almost non-existent out here they just are not eating. One angler dropped a GoPro camera down to find 7 feet deep perch school on the bottom, but not one fish would bite. Some perch are being taken between McCord's Point and Green Field in 56 feet not shallower or deeper. Other anglers are catching smallmouth bass by trolling crankbaits in 23 to 40 feet of water."

Mike @ Lake Erie Bait & Tackle; filed 6-27: "Fishing on the main lake is hit and miss. Some guys are getting limits of perch while other guys catch nothing. Walleyes are at 44 feet seems to be the only depth on the west side of Erie. However anglers in Ohio out of Conneaut are catching eyes from 58 to 62 feet hopefully moving this way."

Jeff @ Poor Richards; filed 6-27: "Walleyes are being taken relatively shallow from 25 to 45 feet; but 40 to 45 feet is the best depth. Crawler harnesses in blues and greens are best. Perch are spotty around 40 to 55 feet, with some guys getting limits while others get nothing. Go figure."

Becky @ Elk Creek Sports; filed 6-27: "Fishing success on the lake has been inconsistent. Perch and walleyes are scattered here one day, gone the next."

Keith @ Dutch Fork Custom Lures; filed 6-20; "Keith from Dutch Fork Custom Lures, Melissa and Ed Rogowski from Erie fished out of Walnut Creek on June 17, 18 and 19. We ran Dutch Fork Ghost Blades with 1-ounce inline weight, 6' foot leader at 55 to 70 feet behind an offshore planer Board in 40 to 42 feet of water going 1.5 to 1.7 mph. Best colors were Krappie, Orange Crush and Pink Squirrel. Water was flat to one foot, sunny and hot no serious bugs yet."

Presque Isle Bay

Thomas Watral @ East Side Bait; filed 6-14: "Liberty Pier has been hot spot for large rock bass and some nice summer perch. The best baits have been crawlers on crappie rigs and sometime small jigs tipped with grubs; casting into 18 to 19 feet of water."


Mike @ CDS; filed 6-27: "I've had good reports about walleyes at Wilhelm. Shenango Lake is too busy for me this time of year. I've been catching smallmouth in Wolf Creek, Neshannock Creek and Slippery Rock Creek by fishing from my kayak. Area farm ponds are producing largemouth bass, too."

Shenango River Lake

Drew @ 5 Points Country Store; filed 6-27: "My report from Shenango can be summed up as lots of small crappies, active channel cats plus a few flatheads, and a slowdown in hybrid striper bite."

Ken Smith (Sharon); filed 6-27: "Today we caught a lot of crappies on Shenango but nothing over nine inches, plus some white bass. Back on the 14th, we got a late start but had a pretty good day. As most know, crappies are not running very big this year. We caught 40 in about four hours, keeping only 16 that were over 9 inches. None were over 10 inches, but these were fat black crappies. Got them in 14 feet of water after trying as shallow as 3 feet before we found them. We coasted twister tails tipped with Crappie Nibbles to lure them."

Lake Wilhelm

Vickie @ Fergies; filed 6-27: "Not much to report from this weekend. However, last week customers reported some nice walleyes and largemouth bass. Plus a 17 inch crappie which we weighed in the shop came in at 2.75 pounds! That is one big crappie!"

Marci @ Lake Wilhelm Marina; filed 6-27: "It was too hot over the weekend for many anglers to be out. With temps moderating this week, so we expect more anglers for the weekend. Starting this July 4th Weekend, we will have the Food Truck open every weekend for the rest of the summer."

RJ Graham @ Graham Jigs; filed 6-19: "Today I fished Wilhelm. We fished deep with crankbaits and Robo Worm on drop-shot rig. We caught around 30 bass."

Colette Neff; filed 6-27: "The photo I sent shows my daughter Katelyn Neff and me. We had to show the boys how to catch fish at Lake Wilhelm over Memorial Day Weekend. Katelyn reeled in a 13-1/2 inch crappie and I followed with two 13 inch crappies. I enjoyed your publications the first time I saw I mentioned on Facebook."

Michael Baker; filed 6-14: "Attached please find a picture of some fish caught at Lake Wilhelm. We caught them in 12 to 15 feet of water using a minnow on a jighead."


Bill @ Griffins Bait; filed 6-27: "While night fishing on the Allegheny, Dan Kleck and Chance Masterson landed a couple nice flathead catfish. Fishermen are reporting lots of weeds on Sugar Lake. Harry Mallory landed a 21 inch rainbow while fishing wax worms on Sugar Creek."

Pete @; filed 6-27: "We fished the Allegheny on 6-26. It was going to be a hot day so we started early. It was tough for us smallmouth seemed scattered. With the sun high over the clear water, and lots of boat traffic, it was tough. We managed to catch some smallies but most were short. All fish came on 412 Bait Company Stick Baits. Mid-day we decided to get out of the river and try French Creek, where we picked up a few decent fish on the same baits."

Jeff @ Keystone Connection; filed 6-27: "During the past two weeks I've run numerous guide trips on the river. I've noticed a marked increase in activity level of smallmouth bass on the Middle Allegheny. Lots of fish have move into typical summertime locations i.e. near fast current areas. They have been responding to Winco's Solid Body River Darter and Rapala X-Raps."

Bill Logan (Pleasantville); filed 6-25: "It was 90 degrees today and I still got bit! Landed 7 small bass plus a 26 inch walleye in fast water about 3 feet deep. A couple fish came on swimbaits, but most came on a Rapala Clackin' Minnow."

Matt Watson (Franklin); filed 6-25: "I did make it to the river recently for some musky fishing. I landed a 32-incher and a 45-incher. Both muskies and four pike came on a Mepps Musky Killer!"

Angler Al (Franklin); filed 6-22: "Stan Huefner, my brother Steve and I hit the river for catfish. We had five runs that produced two flatheads, 2 turtles and a break-off. We used dead creek chubs and small bluegills in 14 to 16 feet of water. See Steve's photo of his catfish."

Kahle Lake

RJ Graham @ Graham Jigs; filed 6-19: "A buddy and I fished Kahle this past week. It was the best bite I've ever had in 12 to 15 feet of water on Carolina Rigs. The frog bite is also on."



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