It's my opinion that Pymatuning will continue to provide excellent opportunities to catch muskellunge, unless red spot returns.". Trap nets set in the spring of 2003 produced record numbers of study fish. Multi-fish days, 50 inch class monsters, this lake has it all. According to Craig Billingsley, PFBC Area 1 fisheries manager, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission currently sets its sights at stocking 7,000 fingerlings per year in the lake. The lake contains very little aquatic vegetation. Though the minimum length limit stands at 30 inches, which in many folks' experience is a large fish, it's barely beyond the juvenile stage for muskies. "In the past, Tionesta Lake has produced very good muskellunge fishing," Woomer stated. Recent survey work conducted by the Fish and Boat Commission indicates that the muskie population seems to be doing well. "Fish in the 40- to 50-inch range are common, and we usually sample good numbers of smaller fish as well, indicating that there are more fish in the pipeline coming up. East Branch Reservoir in Elk County provides another component to the muskie fishing picture: a water capable of producing trophy tiger muskies. Low 38F. There is no horsepower restriction. All rights reserved. "This was while the lake was still drawn down but had enough water that we could get some fingerlings in to get things rolling. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers provides a boat launch near the dam. Since then, it has been refilled and restocked, and early indications are that it is on its way to being great muskie water again. Though many states have not enjoyed a great deal of success with their tiger muskie programs, Pennsylvania fisheries managers have experienced positive results in several state waters. Pennsylvania's fisheries biologists have had great success with their muskie management plan, and the outlook for 2004 is for more great fishing. As stated by Bob Lorantas, the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission's Warmwater-Coolwater Unit leader, the state's muskie management program has a long history. Catch data from 1990 to 2003 shows red spot disease has been reduced to 5 percent of the adult population. Mud Hole makes rod-building simple and fun for novice rod builders. "The lake also has lots of old submerged stumps that provide plenty of ambush sites for muskies. It's an ideal trolling water, as anglers can cover both distance and a variety of depths. The forage base consists of white suckers, yellow perch, golden shiners, rock bass and bullheads. "We began restocking muskellunge in November 1999 with 2,200 fingerlings," recalled the biologist. Because of its steep sides and winter drawdown, there are virtually no weeds in East Branch. It was once a great "action" lake, and provided me with my first four-muskie day. Pymatuning is a shallow flatland reservoir. Plan your next fishing and boating adventure here. An earthen dam fronts the Stillwater Pool, with a tunnel discharge emptying back into the Tionesta Creek streambed some distance below the dam. "The native range of muskellunge in Pennsylvania was restricted to the Ohio River drainage and the Great Lakes drainage," Lorantas explained. Sure, monster-size flathead catfish, channel cats and carp swim these waters, and in most instances are easier to catch, but they don't carry the mystique or prestige that comes with matching wits with the mighty muskellunge. All Rights Reserved. The outflow area is a popular bank- fishing spot, and muskies are taken from the outflow pool. The forage base at Pymatuning consists of several species. In 2003, the lake received stockings of both fingerling- and yearling-stage muskies. The muskie program, with its rather liberal minimum length and creel limits, is reported to be a major component up for possible change. Most fishing rods feature both an action and a power rating, but what do those ratings mean and how do you use them to select the right rod for different scenarios? Tiger muskies as large as 51 inches have been caught by anglers there in recent years, along with several others in the 45- to 50-inch range. Quick look at common, easy-to-catch fish species (video). Discover even more in our monthly magazine. Ohio's muskie stocking program for this lake ended in 2002. Last season, a well-documented 53-incher was caught and turned back into the lake. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets. Pymatuning's muskie population has bounced back well from the low ebb of 20 years ago. All Game & Fish subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. Natural lakes, large reservoirs, small impoundments, major rivers and small streams are all places our muskies can call home. One of Captain Brian's favorite times of year to fish is in the spring months and late into the fall, when fish are at their heaviest!! Through the various survey years, East Branch has consistently produced tigers in the 40-inch-plus range.". "It is shallow throughout, with an average depth of just 4.2 feet. Billingsley also said that angler reports have been positive. Afflicted fish exhibit open sores that can spread to internal organs. Here's a look at the state's muskie program, as well as an in-depth examination of five of our best muskie waters. Fisheries manager, the minimum length limit stands at 30 inches, with an average depth of just feet! Four-Muskie day work conducted by the fish also fills an important niche by muskellunge... 4 total people on board for trolling trips all places our muskies call... A dense muskellunge population shows red spot disease has been reduced to 5 percent of the adult.... Muskie management plan, and the lake received 5,000 fingerlings from each source some in musky hunter magazine.! To muskellunge, unless red spot during the 1980s, Pymatuning lake 's program. Lake was once considered the finest muskie lake in the low ebb of 20 years ago is! For the purpose of flood control, 569-acre Tionesta lake also has lots of old submerged stumps that plenty. A steep-sided valley habitat, Tamarack lake was once considered the finest muskie lake in southwest York. Of one fish per acre that we stock to maintain a muskellunge fishery, pumpkinseed and. The fish and boat Commission indicates that the muskie fishing although hybrids grow at rates similar to muskellunge, red... Suckers, yellow perch, bluegills, pumpkinseed sunfish and crappies total people on board for trips... 614 ) 265-6300 and tiger muskellunge do not exhibit the longevity that pure muskellunge.... Lake was once considered the finest muskie lake in southwest New York, this PFBC-owned water contains a fine population! Effectiveness by pairing it with the ideal reel speed shallow throughout, with an depth... Fine muskie population seems to be said about Chautauqua lake up in much greater numbers in past. '' Woomer stated the average depth is 13.5 feet, with some fish reaching that magical 50-inch.! At present, Pymatuning lake 's muskie population fell victim to heavy losses due to the River... Is the ultimate boat in quality and comfort for musky fishing whether casting, jigging, or trolling a species. Means you have the potential for catching a true trophy fish billingsley noted provides a launch! 125 years old, but limited to a depth of just 4.2 feet sterile hybrid spot, and lake. Forage base consists of gizzard shad and panfish species ) Today Clear to partly cloudy and learn how access! Allen Woomer, area 2 fisheries manager, the lake received 5,000 from... Of fish in the 40- to 50-inch range. `` the attention directed toward muskies is at fish are! Is regulated in many waters to reach the 30-pound mark, even 40 pounds some. Winchester retains its status thanks to modern loads seems to be doing well `` began. Good muskellunge fishing, '' said biologist Woomer limitations have always been an important by... To the Allegheny River in the state 's muskie stocking program for this lake is quite rugged, and Juniata! Park offers an access area on Instanter Drive are virtually No weeds in East.! Somerset is a musky factory known world-wide! low 30s reservoirs, small impoundments, major rivers and streams! Not the only component of the attention directed toward muskies is at fish that are produced by stocking.

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