Trout, stripers taking anglers’ bait

This week, we’re welcoming Cabela’s in Hamburg to the Fish Report mix. We’ve lost our two Berks County mom-and-pops to closure in recent years, so the gang at Cabela’s has stepped up to the plate and hopes to deliver the best places and baits for successful fishing on that side of our coverage area.

Also, the special “kids-only” area along the Jordan Creek in the Trexler Nature Preserve has signs listed for 12-and-under, but it is in essence for children 15-and-under, according to Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission’s Lee Creyer, the Lehigh County Waterways Conservation Officer. He didn’t want to alter the current signs with a marker, so please be considerate of the kids over 12 who are fishing there legally.

Stripers are still running at the shore, and even blues are biting for some of the earliest, best action our reporting shops have seen at the nearby New Jersey shores.


Wallenpaupack Sports Shop, Hawley (570-226-4797): Mark says the fishing has been really good (catch-and-release still) trolling for trout in the 5- to 12-pound range with big Rapalas and Cotton Cordell Ripplin red fins. Sunny weather has been good for smallmouth bass hitting stick bait in the back end of coves where the streams come in. Calico are in the back end of coves hitting on fatheads with a float or with small Mister Twisters. Perch are hitting live fathead minnows. Shohola and the small pounds have been good for crappies on fatheads. Walleye action is hot on the Delaware from Dingmans Ferry all they way to Narrowsburg, N.Y. Shad bucks are starting to bite, hitting small darts. The big shad run isn’t there yet, but they are starting to bite.

Pecks Pond Boat Rentals, Tackle Bait, Dingmans Ferry, (570-775-7237); Charlie, who is recovering from surgery, says the shop is open.

Willie’s Bait Tackle, Cementon (610-261-2767): Willie says fishing has been great, although the creeks are low. He and his 7-year-old grandson Grant reached his limit in 20 minutes on the Hokendauqua. Minnows were working extremely well. Joe Herman of Hokendauqua caught a 20-inch, 2-pound, 10-ounce rainbow on the Hokendauqua. Walter Ives of Allentown caught a 23-inch, 5-pound, 7-ounce rainbow on the Jordan on yellow glitter PowerBait. Justin Koch of Bethlehem caught a 23-inch, 5.5-pound Palomino on a trout magnet in the Jordan. Nelson Snyder from Cementon caught a 23.5-inch, 5.5-pound rainbow on the Coplay on a minnow.

Bob’s Wildlife Taxidermy, 4642 Kernsville Road, Orefield (610-398-7609): Bob says the Jordan and the surrounding area from the game lands to Wehrs Dam still have a lot of fish. Fishing pressure has been medium to light except for the usual hot spots such as the dam. Trout are starting to get really touchy and laying low because the water is so clear. Approach the water with some stealth and dress for conditions. Anglers are buying up a lot of butterworms and rosy red minnows because of the clear water and bright skies. Reports are of success when approaching from a distance and casting from farther away into the pools. Several nice fish from youngsters have been brought in for mounting, including a 21-inch Palomino caught in Wehrs Dam by 7-year-old Robby Moyer III of Orefield using garlic Gulp bait.

Archery @ the Glenn, Allentown, (610-791-7665): Brian says Barney Eck of Allentown caught a 21-inch, 4-pound rainbow on a fathead minnow in the Jordan Creek. Michael Freitas caught a 22.5-inch, 5-pound, 6-ounce rainbow in the Jordan. Ed Kratzer of Allentown caught a 24-inch, 7-pound Palomino on PowerBait in the Little Lehigh. Leonard Kale of Allentown caught a 23-inch, 5-pound, 10-ounce rainbow on a fathead minnow in the Little Lehigh. The water is still low all over. All popular baits seem to work at any given time. Brian’s hoping for a good weekend weather-wise, but says we need rain. For boaters, Stay-bil has an ethanol fuel treatment that helps minimize the moisture-drawing effects of ethanol.

Heritage Fly Shop, Little Lehigh Parkway, Allentown (610-248-8836): Dave says the Little Lehigh is fishing well. There’s been much less pressure since the water has opened up, which is nice for anglers. There’s been caddis activity all along the creek, with Crane flies and small ants as great patterns.

Mike’s Bait Sports Shop, Nazareth, (610-759-2905): Mike says fishing has been really good. Trout seem schooled up tight to where the oxygen is best. Stocking will restart in the Bushkill on the 17th. Fishing has been very good at Jacobsburg and 17th Street on down. Shad success has dropped with the water temperatures, but should pick up as the water warms.

Klotz’s Bait Shop, Hellertown (610-838-7970): Caroline says Todd Osmun of Bethlehem caught a 22-inch, 3.5-pound rainbow on a spinner in the Saucon Creek. John Gerry of Allentown caught a 24-inch brown trout and two rainbow trout using PowerBait in the Monocacy. Six-year-old Owen Weaver of Bethlehem used a minnow to catch a 16.5-inch brown trout.

Cabela’s, Hamburg, (610-929-7000): Jon Reilly says Kaercher Creek Lake just east of Hamburg has been producing decent amounts of largemouth bass action. The unusually warm spring has some of these fish moving up into shallow waters, especially on warmer days. Try slow-falling soft plastic baits to target the shallow-water bass. Trout fishing action has also been good throughout the area. Target the deepest holes in your favorite stream or publicly stocked lake to find fish. PowerBait and butterworms are two great producing baits after the first day frenzy.



Capt. Dave Riback of the Queen Mary from Point Pleasant Beach (732-899-3766) Capt. Dave says stripers are still going strong. He’s running weekends-only through April 15 and picking up daily activity 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. beginning April 16.

The Tackle Box in Hazlet (732-264-7711) Anthony says the shop will be open Easter morning and the striper bite has been phenomenal the past two weeks. They’re catching them on the boats with jigs in the ocean using Croc spoons and big shad. The action is red hot from the beach, the bay and ocean.


Brielle Tackle (732-528-5720) Greg says the fishing has been very good. Party boats are catching stripers at the inlet. The Jamaica has been fishing about a mile out following the birds with great success on Thursday. Stripers appear to be eating herring, so Crocs are a good bet for bait. Action has been good to great the last 10 days or so. Bottom fishing for ling also has been good. Cod action is starting to pick up. Cod weren’t particularly active during the winter, so the thought is things will heat up this spring. Blackfish are on the jettys. The shop will be open on Easter morning.


Scott’s Bait Tackle (609-296-1300) Scott says it’s been a very good spring with the bite starting early. He had never seen a blue fish weighed in by March 24 before. Drum fish, striped bass and perch are also biting. Blues are 32 inches and in the 10-pound range. Drum fish are “only” coming in at 30 pounds. Most of the fishing is land-based at Graveling Point at the end of the road. Tautog opened on April 1, but the clam boats hadn’t been able to get out for the bait for the tog because of wind and rough oceans. The clammers did get out on Wednesday, so the bait is available. Meanwhile, everyone’s happy with the striper action.



Old Inlet Bait Tackle (302-227-7974) Andy says the inlet has been great for stripers. One customer pulled in a 31-incher, but the surf action has been poor with few stripers and a bunch of skates. When the wind isn’t blowing at 20 knots, nice flounder are being caught in the back bay. There are a few small tautog in the inlet as the water warms up. Overall, there are people out there picking up fish.


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