WCO Report for Erie and Western Crawford County 01/22/03: Erie area, PA,
WCO Report Posted: January 22, 2003

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Posted by DWCO Randy Leighton on January 22, 2003 at 09:34:55:


The nations cold snap is no more evident than in Erie right now. Night time temperatures in the single digits and day time temperatures in the teens have the tribs frozen over with little to no open water fishing access. Snow fall this season is already nearly 90". Lake Erie has begun to ice over. The Walnut Creek marina basin is frozen and anglers have been trying their luck through the ice for steelhead with some success. Ice there as of the writing is 6 to 7" thick. Ice season on Presque Isle Bay is in full swing with the ice thickness varying from 5 to 8" and cities of ice huts scattered everywhere. Anglers on the Bay are picking up perch and some crappie with trial and error on location. Shiners are the bait of choice as well as the small ice jigs. Anglers have also been trying their luck on the ice along the shoreline at Trout Run. This can be very successful, although anglers are advised to use extreme caution. Ice along the lake shore can be very unstable at times and "hollow areas" especially on the ice dunes, can be dangerous. Be sure to carry a set of hand ice picks, wear a floatation device, wear ice cleats for slippery ice and dress warm.

This is also the season for the ice boaters on the Bay. These high speed wind sleds are typically found on the West end of Presque Isle Bay. Anglers are advised to watch out for them as they move fast and have limited maneuverability.

Upcoming Outdoor Shows:
Erie Outdoor Sport & Travel Expo 2003 Erie Sport Show 2/28/03 - 3/2/03 Erie, PA
Early Bird Sports Expo 1/22/03 - 1/26/03 Bloomsburg, PA
Spring Power Sport Spectacular 1/26/03 - 2/2/03 Erie, PA
Valley Forge RV Show 01/30/03 - 02/02/03 Valley Forge. PA
Eastern Sports Show 02/08/03 - 02/16/03 Harrisburg, PA
Allegheny Outdoor Show 02/12/03 - 02/16/03 Monroeville, PA
Pennsylvania Boat Show 02/13/2003 - 02/16/03 Fort Washington, PA
Lehigh Valley Outdoor Expo 03/01/03 - 03/03/03 Lehigh Valley, PA
Greater Buffalo Sport & Outdoor Show 03/06/03 - 03/09/03 Hamburg, NY
Wyoming Valley Outdoors Expo 03/15/03 - 03/17/03 Wilkes-Barre, PA

Safe Boating Class, filling up fast:
Local PFBC officers will be conducting a safe boating class on February 11th and 12th from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM at the Stull Interpretive Center on Presque Isle. This is a must for the new boater with lots of valuable information, interesting video presentations, and all the latest updates on boating regulations and safety. Its also an excellent refresher for those in need. Successful completion of the course will qualify the individual for a Pennsylvania Safe Boating Certificate, a requirement for all personal watercraft operators. The Pennsylvania Safe Boating Certificate will also be required for anyone born after 1981 to operate a motorized vessel greater than 25 HP. (new for this year) This popular class fills up quickly and early registration is suggested. Pre registration is required. All materials are provided at no charge. To register email DWCO Randy Leighton at rglerie@aol.com or WCO Tom Edwards at Pafishcop13@yahoo.com or if necessary phone Officer Edwards at 814-864-6566


Ice anglers are having success on the Southwest end of Presque Isle Bay, in front of the waterworks along the Bay front and at the east end of Presque Isle where the Presque Isle Bay meets Misery bay. Good numbers of steelhead are in the Bay now and can be caught through the ice. I have seen a few pike pulled out and fair numbers of perch and crappie are starting to be caught. Finding the schools this early in the ice season is the challenge.

Anglers are reminded that Presque Isle State Park opens at 5:00 AM and is closed to foot traffic at sunset. Anglers should be leaving the park by sunset.

Ice fishing on Edinboro Lake has been fair to good for panfish including some perch. The fingers or headwaters of the lake are a good area to target. The fingers are easily accessible from Lay road on the far west end of the Lake.

The Gravel Pit Pond on Fairview will have a late winter stocking on February 18th.


Pymatuning Lake:
The lake is frozen now and guys are hitting it hard. Most of the action is on the north end around Tuttle point, which is open now by the way. The south end is frozen as well now but the ice is a little thinner as it froze up last. Guys are telling me around 10" to 12" for the north end and 2" to 4" on the south. The best luck seems to be had between Tuttle and manning at the edges of the drop off for the old river bed. Be sure to dress warm as the wind howls across the open area of the ice.

Conneaut Lake:
The lake is frozen here as well but I have not seen anyone fishing it yet to be able to give you conditions or success stories.

Crystal Lake:
This small lake has been getting a lot of pressure lately and from what I understand guys are doing really well. I was informed of a 19" and a 17" largemouth taken through the ice using a large fat head minnow. there seems to be three or four fishermen here daily so they must be doing pretty good.

Pioneer Fun Days:
The annual pioneer fun days and winter carnival is fast approaching. It will be held on February 1 & 2 with snow mobile rides, arts and crafts, ice fishing demonstrations, ice rescue demonstrations, and numerous other programs, it promises to be a fun time for all the family. Get out and enjoy this mid winter break and I am sure you will be glad you did.


Weather for the coming week:
Wednesday Night
Mostly cloudy with a chance of snow. An inch or less of accumulation. Lows zero to 10 above. West winds around 15 mph. Chance of snow 40 percent.
Snow likely. Highs in the mid teens. Chance of snow 60 percent.
Thursday Night
Mostly cloudy with a chance of snow. Lows zero to 10 above. Chance of snow 40 percent.
Mostly cloudy with a chance of snow showers. Highs in the upper teens. Chance of snow 40 percent.
Friday Night
Partly cloudy. Lows 5 to 15 above.
Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow during the night. Highs 20 to 25.
Mostly cloudy with a chance of snow. Lows 10 to 20 and highs in the upper 20s.
Mostly cloudy. Lows 15 to 25 and highs near 30.
Mostly cloudy. Lows in the mid 20s and highs in the mid 30s.

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