Spotlight - Loyalhanna Creek
Roscoe native Carl Dranzo caught a monster brown trout -- weighing 8 1/2 pounds and stretching 24 inches long and 15 inches around -- from Loyalhanna Creek this past week. Dranzo was fishing just upstream of Kingston Dam when he caught the fish on a minnow, said Rich Kacsuta of Loyalhanna Fishing Post in Ligonier. The big fish was one of four large brooders reportedly stocked in that section of creek.
Anglers have been getting average-size walleyes and sauger from the Allegheny River recently, said Lindsay Fischetti of Lock 3 Bait and Tackle in Cheswick. Chartreuse and white Twister Tails and fathead minnows have been producing some nice smallmouth bass, however.
Anglers jigging fatheads have been catching walleyes and sauger consistently on the Allegheny around Braeburn, said Rick DeMichele of Allegheny Bait and tackle in Tarentum. Tube baits have been catching smallmouths.
Anglers have been getting "keeper-sized" crappies from Shenango Dam when fishing with fatheads.
The Beaver River has started to turn on again, said Bob Bernhardy of Shooter's Place in Bridgewater. One angler fishing just below New Brighton Dam caught a 24-inch striped bass, while another got a muskie that was about 48 inches long, he said. Fishermen have been getting smallmouths and walleyes on a regular basis, too.
Harbor Acres Lake in Butler County has been producing nice trout for anglers fishing fatheads on the bottom or a trout magnet tipped with a mealworm or maggot under a bobber.
Anglers fishing with Twister Tails have been getting sauger in the 20-inch class from the portion of the Ohio River that flows under the Route 79 bridge, said Jason Shazer of Island Firearms of Neville Island. They've also been getting walleyes on shiners and Twister Tails from the Emsworth Dam area when fishing at night.
Yough Area Fishermans Association stocked 400 trout in the Yough River in Connellsville over the weekend, and anglers have been getting some of those fish.
Very few people have been fishing Canonsburg Lake or Little Chartiers Creek, said Don Boyan of Orchard View Angling in McMurray.
Anglers were picking up trout and bass at Keystone State Park Lake over the weekend using nightcrawlers.
Lake Arthur's crappie fishing picked up again this week, as water temperatures have risen, said Ron Anderson of Appalachian Trails. One angler caught a 9 1/2-pound striped bass.
Loyalhanna Dam has been giving up some walleyes in the 16- to 22-inch class for anglers fishing with shiners and nightcrawlers.
The walleyes have turned off a bit, at least in the Highland Park area of the Allegheny River, but the sauger have started biting in their place.
Brown trout have been hitting on live minnows in Glade Run, Conwanshannock Creek and the South Fork of Pine Creek, all in Armstrong County.
Plum Creek was stocked earlier this week, and fishermen have been getting some nice rainbow trout there using waxworms, meal worms and minnows, said Pam Warr of Keystone Bait and Tackle.
Anglers fishing early and late in the day have been getting trout from Linn Run and Fourmile Creek, said Martha Martino of Jimmy's Bait Shop in South Greensburg. The action has been much slower at Twin Lakes, though.
Channel cats as big as 20 inches have been caught in the slack water at the outflow below Crooked Creek Dam in recent days.
Jefferson native Mark Smith has been doing well fishing for catfish on the Monongahela River. He's caught 13 channel cats and 12 flatheads fishing near West Elizabeth. The biggest of the cats was a 32-pounder that hit on a live bluegill.
At Lake Erie, fishermen have been getting big smallmouths in 20 to 40 feet of water near the shore. Catch rates have been best off the International Paper site on the east side of the City of Erie and West of Walnut Creek. Shorebound anglers have found good fishing on the south side of Presque Isle State Park and along the north and south piers along the Erie Channel.
Jared Hajas, 16, got an 18-inch tiger trout from the portion of Loyalhanna Creek that runs under the railroad bridge in Latrobe, according to Paul Volkmann of Pee-Vee's in Latrobe. His fish hit on a nightcrawler.
Caddis emergers were catching trout in the Buffalo Creek delayed harvest area.
The walleyes continue to bite at Yough Dam. The Yough Walleye Association held a club tournament there last weekend, and the father-daughter team of George and Tanya Dressel of Farmington won with a catch of six fish weighing 15.56 pounds. Steve Popson and Scott Gates of Chalk Hill took second with six fish weighing 14.37 pounds, and third went to Ken Harding and Dave Sines of Oakland, Md., with 12.31 pounds. The lunker was caught by Rich and Mark Fike of Farmington. It was a 4.55-pound fish.
Also at Yough Dam, John Spittal of Nicklow's Bait and Tackle caught a 16-inch, 1 1/2-pound crappie on a minnow fished with a deer hair jig.
The fishing at Conneaut Lake has been improving, but the water needs to warm up a bit for the real action to start, according to reports from the area.
At Pymatuning Lake, the walleye fishing has been steady if unspectacular. Anglers who find one fish and then continue to work that area have been having the most success. The crappie fishing, meanwhile, has been good in the shallow waters on the north end of the lake in the Linesville Launch area known as the stumps and at the Linesville Marina fishing pier. Minnows fished below a bobber have been catching largemouth and smallmouth bass, too.
At Allegheny Reservoir, some legal walleye are being caught in Willow Bay on jigs tipped with nightcrawlers or minnows. Nice perch are being caught in Sugar Bay using the same baits.