WCO Report for Erie County 04/21/2010: Erie area, PA,
WCO Report Posted: April 20, 2010

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Posted by DWCO Randy Leighton on April 20, 2010 at 22:07:27:

April 21st, 2010

West Erie County, DWCO Randy Leighton, rglerie@msn.com

The West County tributaries have become very low and clear as of this writing. Some rain later in the week may help conditions. Continued cold nights may keep a few steelhead around for a while but generally the season is beginning to wind down. A fair number of steelhead remain near the mouths or Elk and Walnut Creeks particularly at the Manchester Hole and around the Elk Creek Access. A fair run of steelhead occurred on Elk this past Friday night before the opening of regular Trout season. It is difficult to predict how long they will stick around. There are still a good number of stocked trout scattered through out Elk and Crooked Creeks. Clear conditions will dictate the lightest of presentations with no more than 4 lb. test line (preferably fluorocarbon). Sucker spawn patterns, single eggs, emerald shiners, and micro jigs will be popular choices for both steelhead and stocked trout.. Suckers have invaded the tribs and some bass are being caught in lower Elk. Current Lake Erie water temperature is 44 degrees. West County tributaries were very low and clear as of Tuesday afternoon.

A number of boats have been observed on both the Bay and the Lake. Water conditions are still frigid. Use extreme caution when boating this time of year. Hypothermia can set in quickly with the current Lake temperatures. Safety equipment, especially PFDs (properly sized and worn) along with a throwable device (ring or cushion) within arms reach can literally mean the difference between life and death this time of year. Check your safety equipment list to be sure all is in order for your boat and that each piece of gear is in good serviceable condition.

Trout Opener:
The opening day of Trout Season was spectacular in spite of cold weather and a large turnout of anglers turned out for the opening season catch. Officers had a great day watching the crowds enjoy this traditional day of family fishing fun. Anglers seemed generally pleased with the numbers and size of the stockies. There were little to no problems with great cooperation from all anglers. The smiles on the kid's faces were the best part of the day. Go to In Season Stocking Schedules for upcoming area stocking information.

Shoreline Fishing at Night for Walleye:
Walleye season opens on May 1st and early season anglers will be trying their luck along the shorelines near the Walnut access area and Trout and Godfrey runs. The stone jetties just east of the Walnut Creek Channel are the most popular spots at night. Resident walleye often will come in close to shore after sunset in search of stocked smolts and shiners. Patient anglers can cash in with a little skill and finesse. It is arguable how successful anglers are with these early season walleye, but be assured we have observed many successful night time outings.

Wading the shoreline or fishing from shore with light line (4 to 6 lb.) using large Rapellas in rainbow, silver, and fire tiger patterns are the ticket. Cast out as far as you can and let the lure rest, giving it an occasional twitch. Patience in and allowing the lure to float motionless at times is critical for success. Typically the strikes are hard and obvious since these "resident" walleye are often the "lunkers". Secrets to success are patience, keeping quiet and not using any light. Successful anglers say even a lit cigarette can scare them away from the shore at night. Calm moon lit evenings and a glass lake surface tend to be the most productive although the action can start shortly after sunset at times.

Boaters often have success as well this time of year staying close to shore and either casting or trolling. Planer boards are almost a must for near shore walleye when trolling. A reminder that the walleye limits have changed for this year. The minimum size is 15" with a daily creel limit of 6 fish.

Elk Valley Sportsmen's Annual Club Kids Fishing Derby:
The Elk Valley Sportsmen's Association will be holding its annual fishing derby for kids 12 and under at the Girard Boro Park pond on Saturday, May 1st. Kickoff is at 1:00 PM till 3:00 PM with great prizes and refreshments for the kids. This is a terrific event for the kids (and great entertainment for the parents) and is always well attended. This is a great introduction to fishing for the youngsters. Get there early for that "hot spot". Any child 12 years of age or younger is welcome to join in the fun. Fishing gear and help is available for those kids in need and refreshments for the kids are provided. Club members and PFBC officers are always on hand to help out. To get the Girard Boro Park turn north on Route 18 in Girard. Turn left on Lake street go several blocks and turn left at the Park Entrance (Lake Street). The pond is at the bottom of the hill. This is one of the most popular area fishing events of the season with plenty of fish to be caught..... don't miss it.

Local Weather:

Wednesday Night...Mostly cloudy. Lows in the upper 30s. Northwest winds 5 to 10 mph.

Thursday...Partly cloudy. Cooler with highs in the lower 50s. Northwest winds 5 to 10 mph.

Thursday Night...Mostly clear. Lows in the lower 30s. West winds 5 to 10 mph...becoming southwest after midnight.

Friday...Mostly sunny. Highs in the upper 50s.

Friday Night...Partly cloudy. Lows in the lower 40s.

Saturday...Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of showers. Highs in the lower 60s.

Saturday Night...Mostly cloudy with a chance of showers and thunderstorms. Lows in the upper 40s. Chance of rain 40 percent.

Sunday...Cloudy. A chance of showers and thunderstorms in the morning...then scattered showers in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 60s. Chance of rain 50 percent.

Sunday Night...Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of showers. Lows in the mid 40s.

Monday...Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of showers. Highs in the upper 50s.

Monday Night...Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of showers. Lows in the lower 40s.

Tuesday...Partly sunny with a 40 percent chance of showers. Highs in the mid 50s.

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