Three topics . . . .
. . . . Mentored Youth Trout Day, late spring steelhead fishing and Lake Erie spring smallmouth bass “run”.
The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Mentored Youth Fishing Day held on Saturday was a success. The weather cooperated and the majority of adults followed the rules. In case you missed it, kids under 16 could fish approved trout waters if accompanied by a licensed adult. Many streams already received their preseason stocking so the trout were hungry and waiting! Two of my grandchildren visiting from Tennessee, ages 13 and 10, had a great time catching trout.
Several anglers I know provided recent Erie steelhead reports that lead me to believe that at this time steelhead fishing is decent. With holdover and spring run fish, you can expect to catch a few when conditions are right. Recent clear, dry weather followed a rain event so fishing catch rates dropped right along with the water flow level. Once the water cleared, only small presentations and single eggs worked. When flow increases so will the catch rates. From this point forward, the tributaries will be crowded with smolts, suckers, spring jacks and smallmouth bass.
Smallmouth bass arrive in the tributaries in late March and early in April. They are usually following the bait fish that are attracted to the warming water. Expect their numbers to increase daily. A full-scale bass-spawning run will take place in the tributaries, along the lakeshore and in Presque Isle Bay through May. You may be disappointed to see the steelhead crowded out by the bass and trash fish, but smallmouth bass that average 2 to 3 pound with some 4+ will ease your pain.
I have no video from last spring. The stupid pandemic spoiled 2020. A sample of the bass action can be viewed in the 2018 and 2019 clips.
Good luck if you go.