Area streams and creeks will be teeming with trout and almost an equal number of anglers when the trout season opens Saturday, March 30, in 18 counties within the Southeast Region of Pennsylvania. For the remaining counties of the state, the season opens April 13.
Within, you’ll find the in-season stocking dates for Lehigh and Northampton counties. You’ll notice Leaser Lake is missing as it was initially reported it wouldn’t be stocked. But it was on 3/25. However, Mike Parker, PF&BC Communications Director, said Leaser was stocked with rainbow trout but its initial allocation was cut because the lake didn’t produce acceptable creel yields. Part of Leaser’s allocation, he said, went to Kaercher Creek Dam in Hamburg, Berks County, as it’s a smaller lake and should offer better yields.
During last years’ opener, I interviewed several Leaser anglers at all three access locations and not one caught a trout. A few fishermen caught a Muskie and couple more caught small bass and panfish, all of which had to be returned unharmed. The general consensus among those surveyed believed the muskies ate them. But Parker dispelled that theory.
That aside, with pre and in-season stockings, the PF&BC will stock 468,800 trout in the Southeast Region alone. That is out of a state-wide allocation of 3.2 million in 707 streams and 127 lakes. And that breaks down as 2.1 million rainbows, 640,000 browns and 440,000 brook trout.
Keep in mind not all portions of the streams get stocked on a specific date. They are as follows:
Cedar Creek: 4/16, 5-13; Coplay Creek: 4-3, 5-1; Jordan Creek: 4/3, 4/4, 4,8, 4/11, 4/24,4/29; Little Lehigh Creek: 4/16, 4/22, 5/13, 10/15; Ontelaunee Creek: 4/15; Switzer Creek: 4/24; Trout Creek: 4/16; Lehigh Canal: 4/5.
Bushkill Creek: 4/16, 4/26, 5/15; Hokendauqua Creek: 4/9, 4/23, 4/30; Indian Creek: 4/9; Jacoby Creek: 4/3; Lehigh Canal: 4/18; Little Bushkill Creek: 4/26, 5/15; Martins Creek: 4/3; Monocacy Creek: 4/17, 5/2; Saucon Creek: 4/17, 5/2.
If you’re new to the area or are looking for more places to fish, Stream Map USA has debuted a handy smartphone app for you to explore even the most remote rivers, lakes, and streams. Finding them is simple they say, just type in a name and you immediately get turn-by-turn driving directions right to streamside. Search for any water across the entire region or limit your search by state or even search an individual county. Once you locate your water, simply touch the map to add a waypoint. Then tap "Go" for turn-by-turn driving directions right to the water.
Once you arrive, Stream Map USA turns your mobile device into a handheld GPS. Your location is displayed on the map as it follows your travels. Along the way, you save additional waypoints with GPS accuracy and add your own notes. This feature is ideal for marking fishing holes, campsites, tree stands, scenic locations, or just about anywhere you may wish to return. To get back, simply tap your waypoint's "Target" button and use the built-in navigation compass, which points the way and counts down the distance right to your spot. It even works without cellular service.
Stream Map USA is currently available for purchase on the App Store and Google Play. Each edition is priced at $9.99 and can be installed on multiple devices including both phones and tablets. For those information visit StreamMapUSA.com or simply search for it on your app store.
If you’re heading up to Leaser Lake via Kernsville Road, then Route 100, you may want to stop at Bob’s Wildlife Taxidermy (610-398-7609) on Kernsville Road and a block west of the Route 309 traffic light, for some last minute bait and tackle items. Bob has the gamut of minnows, mealworms, worms, lures and Power Baits.
MENTORED YOUTH TROUT DAY
Despite high winds and high water from the rains we had, some youth anglers managed to catch a trout or two.
One such angler was Annika Schiebel of New Tripoli, who fished with her sister Ava and friend Josh Hanna. Annika held on tight to land a 22-inch rainbow trout from the upper Jordan Creek with some assistance from her father Tommy Schiebel.
Mentored youth were allowed to catch and keep two trout during the pre-season special fishing day.
Nick Hromiak has been an outdoors and automotive writer for over 30 years. He's been published in numerous national and state-wide outdoor magazines and newspapers.