BLOG: Get Out and Fish!

By: Cindy Adams Dunn, Secretary of Conservation and Natural Resources

April 20, 2016

Now is the time to get outdoors and fish!

Trout fishing in Pennsylvania is both a popular and an old tradition that entire families can enjoy. Trout live in cold water streams where, in the right setting, native brook trout can reproduce naturally and thrive on aquatic insects and larvae. Pennsylvania’s state forests are the perfect setting for these tumbling headwater and wilderness trout streams.

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With 85,000 miles of rivers and streams — and thousands of lakes and ponds in Pennsylvania — there are fishing spots in nearly every corner of our commonwealth. Our state parks and forests have high-quality waterways and Approved Trout Waters where brook, brown and rainbow trout are stocked.

Many parks have fishing tackle loaner programs where those interested can borrow fishing rods, reels and an equipped tackle box to try fishing while at the park. DCNR has partnered with the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission and the American Sportfishing Association on the loaner program — which is perfect for first-time anglers.

State parks have plenty of lakes and ponds for kids and first-timers to try out the sport. Many access points also are ADA accessible.

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DCNR’s Calendar of Events lists upcoming fishing programs for adults and children that are available to state park visitors. Some programs include making fishing lures, family fishing programs, fishing skills for kids, and fish-for-free days. The Get Outdoors PA program also offers fishing events.

Pennsylvania is always looking to improve the tremendous resource it has in its waterways. In addition to other state agencies for whom water quality is an important aspect—in particular, the Fish & Boat Commission and the Department of Environmental Protection — DCNR also plays a large role in assuring that the state’s water is protected as a precious resource.

You can help to conserve our natural resources and fishing at our waterways for future generations by following these tips:
  • Know and follow fishing regulations
  • Know and follow boating regulations, including canoes and kayaks
  • Dispose of fishing line properly
  • Avoid sensitive areas and do not pick or trample native plants and wildflowers
  • Do not discard live bait at the fishing site
  • Use lead-free tackle
  • Do not drive through streams or riparian areas
  • Dispose of trash properly
  • Leave what you find

Since state forests and parks have both coldwater and warmwater streams and lakes, chances are if you want to go fishing, you’ll find what you need on DCNR lands.

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