Skip to main content
Original Issue


A digest of last-minute reports from fishermen and other unreliable sources


SO=season opened (or opens); SC=season closed (or closes); SV=season varies by district or water.
C=clear water; D=water dirty or roily; M=water muddy.
N=water at normal height; SH = slightly high; H=high; VH=very high; L=low; R=rising; F=falling.
WT50=water temperature 50°.
FG=fishing good; FF=fishing fair; FP=fishing poor.
OG=outlook good; OP=outlook poor.

TROUT: PENNSYLVANIA: FP on most central Pennsylvania streams but OF/G when water warms to 50-55° range; anglers on Yellow Breeches, Big Spring, Clark Creek, Stony Creek find occasional browns amenable to No. 12 Quill Gordons (dry) and Gold-ribbed Hare's Ears (wet). In "northern tier" counties most streams are SH, C, WT46-50, with First Fork and Driftwood Branch of the Sinnamahoning producing fair creels on nymphs, wets and streamers; OG. In Allegheny National Forest area fly-fishermen are enjoying best early-season action in many years as WT tops 50° and surface feeding has begun in earnest; Oil and Tionesta creeks are best bet, with Tionesta from Mayburg up through west branch to Clarendon most productive. Scattered fly hatches reported along fast-water section of Slippery-rock Creek at McConnells Mills, with a few experts claiming limit catches on nymphs and small wet flies.

NEW YORK: The big run of spawning rainbows hadn't shown on the Esopus last Sunday but may get under way any day; meanwhile fish in main river and tribs are gorging on nymphs and caddis cases, and respond well to leadwing coachman, hare's ear, march brown and other drab wet fly patterns in sizes 10 to 14. River is clear and easily waded as portal is still closed, with WT46-52 and fair hatches of Quill Gordons and assorted small stoneflies to cheer the dry-fly brigade; outlook is dandy. Barring heavy rains the Beaverkill should be in fine shape now, with WT50-54 and the grannom (green egg sac) hatch due momentarily; fish a small dark nymph just below surface during this hatch (locally called shad fly); after trout have gorged on this fly the river usually goes dead for several days; until then outlook is excellent on entire length of this fine river.

WISCONSIN: SO April 30. Easy spring thaw and light rainfall have kept most streams below early-spring level; upper Brule C but lower stretches SD.

MAINE: Chicken-farmer Basil Clements of Winterport landed an 8-pound 3-ounce brookie from Swan Lake in Waldo County last week to set fast pace for down-east trouters.

OREGON: General trout SO April 30 with outlook doubtful in western Oregon; best bets in central area are Deschutes and Metolius rivers, both C, N, OG.

WASHINGTON: Lowland lake season opening was terrific success, with average opening-day catch 7.58 trout per angler and Blue and Park lakes in Grant County and Lawrence Lake in Thurston County top producers. Most Columbia basin lakes giving grand sport, and OG.

IDAHO: SO May 1 for northern part of state with record turn-out expected; Priest, Spirit, Coeur d'Alene, Pend Oreille and Hayden lakes will get biggest play and produce biggest trout.

BRITISH COLUMBIA: Despite cold blowy weather most Vancouver Island lakes below 1,000 feet are producing fine catches. Fly hatches are starting to come off most streams and outlook on island and lower mainland streams is excellent through May 10.

ATLANTIC SALMON: NEW BRUNSWICK: Northwest, Southwest and main Miramichi, Cains, Renous and Tabusintac rivers N, C, with limits of black salmon the rule on the Renous and main Miramichi; Nashwaak and St. John rivers H, FP/F.

LANDLOCKED SALMON: MAINE: Sebago, Green, Branch, Beech Hill, Phillips, Swan, China, Cobbosseecontee, Cathance, Nash and Messalonskee lakes are completely ice free; Moosehead, Rangeley, Fish River Lake, East and West Grand lakes were still ice bound but should start breaking up this week.

NEW HAMPSHIRE: Lakes Winnipesaukee, Winnisquam, Squam, Sunapee and Newfound are ice free and producing to trolled smelt and streamer flies; Connecticut Lake should be fishing by May 1.

COBIA: MISSISSIPPI: While Chicagoan Ed Weiss was boating a 74¾-pound cobia near Horn Island off Biloxi, a 125-pounder caught in a shrimp trawl and brought into Biloxi proved there are bigger fish in the sea.

MARLIN: BAHAMA ISLANDS: With white marlin season in full swing Doug Brooks of Lansdale, Pa. subdued a 94-pounder he hooked while trolling with spinning tackle last Saturday; OG through May.

STEELHEAD TROUT: IDAHO: Despite snow, rain and rising water the main Salmon River at MacKay Bar, the North Fork of the Salmon at the mouth of French Creek and the Firehole below Riggins were producing well last week; while cold weather retards run-off, OG. Middle Fork of the Salmon is fairly hot from the mouth up to McCall's ranch with fish averaging 12 pounds; Weiser River reports FF below Galloway Dam, and OF.

BRITISH COLUMBIA: Except for fish reported in lower reaches of Bella Coola River and moving up, winter runs are over and summer runs not yet in; OP.

CALIFORNIA: Steelhead to 15 pounds were being taken in Sacramento River near Redding last week, and OG through next week.

KINGFISH: FLORIDA: As concentration of kingfish moved northward from Tampa into St. Marks, Panacea and Carrabelle area, most charter boats and all skiffs were booked solidly by Georgia and Alabama fishermen; most kings were being taken on trolled mullet or large spoons, and OG through May 10.

CHANNEL BASS: NORTH CAROLINA: Big bass arrived in the surf between Oregon and Hatteras inlets last week and are taking bait; fish are mostly in 30-pound class but trollers in Oregon Inlet took fish to 50 pounds on feather jigs; OG through May 15.