April 15th, 2009|
West Erie County, DWCO Randy Leighton, WCO Brook Tolbert
Steelhead season is beginning to wind down with the remaining fish widely scattered and many of them heavily winter worn. If you are after suckers, the tribs are loaded Much of the attention around the area has focused on the spring crappie and bass fishing in and around Presque Isle Bay both along the shore line and by boat. At this point, weather forecasts look good for the weekend opener, although a little rain would be helpful. The area tribs are running on the low and clear side with some flow. Current Lake Erie water temperature off Toledo is 43 degrees, off Cleveland, 40 degrees, and off the Port of Erie, 42 degrees.
A Few Words Well Worth Repeating About This Weekend:
Anglers fishing this area are only too well aware of the loss of angling access due to posting. There is really no need at this point to dwell on what has been lost. We are all aware of the crowded conditions we generate and the tension it can cause with local landowners. Future access along the area tribs is in the palms of our hands and it is our choice as sportsmen to treat the given access we have with respect or to lose it all together. This special weekend brings an overlap of steelhead season with opening day of regular trout season making Erie County one of the hottest spots in the state on opening day. In our area this can mean excessively crowded conditions and excessive angling pressure along the tribs. Think about the area you may be fishing and understand that it may be through the generosity of a local land owner that you are able to fish there. Treat these and all areas as if they were your own. If you are fishing near a residential area, keep noise and lights to a minimum and leave with everything you brought in. If an area is posted, respect the rights of those that own it by staying out. Be aware of where you park observing any posted signs and assure that you are not blocking any right of ways. It's really not much to ask when you think about the consequences
Boats on the Gravel Pit Pond as well as all PFBC owned waters, require PFBC or DCNR State Parks registration. Internal combustion engines are not permitted. Water temperatures will still be bone chilling on opening day....make sure your safety equipment is in order. A PFD is required for all persons on board. They must be coast guard approved, in good serviceable condition and be easily accessible.
The Fairview Gravel Pit Pond, Lake Pleasant, and the East and West Basin Ponds at Presque Isle State Park were open to trout fishing through March 31st 2009. These areas are now closed to fishing until April 18th, 2009 at 8:00 AM. (The opening day of Trout Season)
Some opening day suggestions:
VHS Reminder: It is unlawful to transport or cause the transportation of VHS-susceptible species of fish out of the portion of the Lake Erie Watershed in this Commonwealth into other watersheds of this Commonwealth except when certain conditions are met. It is illegal to use VHS-susceptible fish species, fish parts and eggs taken from the Lake Erie Watershed as fishbait in Commonwealth waters outside the Lake Erie Watershed except when the fish are certified as VHS-negative. It is legal to transport dead recreationally caught fish out of the Lake Erie Watershed solely for the purpose of human consumption.
Regarding trout fishing in our area, this includes Lake Erie Emerald Shiners, a popular bait in this area for trout. Many bait shops are now selling certified VHS free shiners for bait and a few are not.
The Gravel Pit Pond in Fairview is literally a mined out gravel pit and as such is quite deep and pending weather, very clear. Small baits with very light line should be fished deep under a float or without any float at all. With a little patience, you may be rewarded with a tough fight from a beautiful brown trout!
Local Campgrounds in Our Area: The following is a list of a number of local camping areas. There may be others and there may be a few of these that are not open yet. Call ahead to be sure. Many people combine an early season camping trip with the opening day of regular Trout season. Open fires and camping typically are not permitted with out land owner permission and overnight camping on PFBC controlled property is not permitted. This list may be helpful in fulfilling your camping needs
Uncle Johns Elk Creek Campground 575 Elk Creek Road., Lake City, PA. 16423 (814) 774-8672 (bear right at the Elk Creek Sports Store to the bottom of the hill)
Cassidys Presque Isle Trailer Park & Campground
Erie KOA Kampground
Family Affair Camp Ground
Follys End Campground
Hemlock Lakes Park
Higbys 3-M Campgrounds
Hill's Family Campground
Lampe Marina Campground
Liana's Lake Park
Moon Meadows Campground
Pine Lane Campground
R & K Campground
Sara's Beachcomber Campground
Virginia's Beach Campground On The Lake
Wednesday Night...Mostly cloudy in the evening...then clearing. Lows in the mid 30s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.
Thursday...Mostly sunny. Highs in the mid 50s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.
Thursday Night...Mostly clear. Lows in the mid 30s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph...becoming east after midnight.
Friday...Mostly sunny. Highs around 60.
Friday Night...Partly cloudy. Lows in the upper 30s.
Trout Opener...Partly sunny. Highs in the upper 50s.
Saturday Night...Mostly cloudy. Lows in the lower 40s.
Sunday...Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of showers. Highs in the mid 50s.
Sunday Night...Cloudy with a 30 percent chance of showers. Lows in the upper 30s.
Monday...Cloudy with a 50 percent chance of showers. Highs in the lower 50s.
Monday Night...Cloudy with a 40 percent chance of showers. Lows in the mid 30s.
Tuesday...Cloudy. Highs in the lower 50s.