Fishing Information

Steelhead TroutCan you succeed fishing Erie’s famous steelhead waters? Erie waters are among the best trophy fisheries in the world. Dozens of tributaries. Presque Isle Bay. Miles of public access. A million juvenile steelhead are stocked each year. Locals know, the best times to fish steelhead are fall, winter and early spring. Some premier fishing spots are highlighted in the map below. Learn more by reading where-to and how-to information on this page. Welcome to Steelhead Country! Click here for more information on steelhead fishing on Lake Erie by the Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission.

Nearby Elk Creek is one of the largest and most popular of the Erie County tributary streams. Elk is stocked with steelhead and brown trout. Walnut Creek is the second largest of the tributary streams and stocked with steelhead (but not trout).

Presque Isle Passage RV Park is conveniently located near one of the country’s top lake and stream fishing areas. Common species are perch, bass, walleye, trout and steelhead in Lake Erie. Presque Isle Bay is also known for panfish, perch, bass, muskellunge, walleye, northern pike, crappies, smelt and steelhead. Popular shore fishing locations are Waterworks and the Ferry Dock, East and West piers, Perry Monument, North Pier, lagoons and all boat landings.

Click here to for seasons, sizes and creel limits — Lake Erie, Lake Erie tributaries and Presque Isle Bay including peninsula waters.

Pennsylvania's Presque Isle State Park named top fishing, boating park (PennLive).

Learn more about recreational opportunities in Presque Isle State Park.

Visit the Tom Ridge Environmental Center to learn about the diverse wildlife which inhabit the Presque Isle peninsula.

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FishPresque Isle Bay is the oldest harbor on the Great Lakes. It is formed as Presque Isle peninsula arches north and east into Lake Erie, forming the Bay. Presque Isle State Park forms the northern shore of the Bay. Most of the southern shore of the Bay is bordered by the City of Erie. The western end of the Bay borders Millcreek Township. There are numerous marinas (mostly private) along the south shore of the Bay. The Port of Erie Marine Terminal, Dobbin's Landing, the Maritime Museum and the home of the Flagship Niagara are all located along the southern shore of the Bay. The Bay is about 4.6 miles in length, and about 1.8 miles across at its widest point. The Bay has an average depth of about 20 feet. Use NOAA Chart 14835 (Erie Harbor) for a detailed map of the Bay.

The western end or “head” of the Bay is closed, and provides access to Presque Isle State Park via Peninsula Drive (State Route 832). The Bay is connected to Lake Erie on its eastern edge via “the channel”, which is a dredged, concrete walled 0.6 mile channel designed to accommodate large freighters entering Presque Isle Bay and the Port of Erie. The channel is about 25 feet deep. The “North Pier” forms the north side of the channel, and is accessed from the tip of Presque Isle State Park near Beach 11. The U.S. Coast Guard Station is located along the western edge of the North Pier. The South Pier forms the south side of the channel, and is accessed off the Bayfront Parkway, near Lampe Marina. Fishing in the channel is only from the North or South Pier. Because the walls of the channel are high, this is primarily still fishing, although there is some casting for bass. Since Presque Isle State Park opens at sun up and closes at sun down, there is no fishing on the North Pier at night. The South Pier is open 24 hours a day. The area straight in from the channel and south between the Parade Street Dock and the the Sassafras Street Dock (known, from east to west, as the Harbor Basin, the Erie Turning Basin and the Harbor Turning Basin), is also dredged to a depth of about 25 feet.

The areas along the northern edge of the Bay, bordering Presque Isle State Park, drop off gradually and contain some shoals and rocks. From the Vista Boat Launch to the area just west of the Presque Isle State Park Administration Building, several hundred feet from shore, is an area known as the “trench.” This trench was formed in the 1960s when sand was taken out of the Bay and pumped to the beaches on the lake side of the Peninsula. It reaches a depth of 23 feet at a point southwest from the Lily Pond.

Just inside the channel, to the north, and just north of the Coast Guard Station, is Horseshoe Pond. Houseboats float in Horseshoe Pond throughout the year. Horseshoe Pond is about 6 feet deep. Misery Bay is located just west of Horseshoe Pond and north of Perry's Monument. It is named for the hardship suffered by the sailors under the command of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry during the winter of 1813-14 immediately following the Battle of Lake Erie. Misery Bay is a popular fishing spot. The walls along the monument side are concrete. It is about 9 feet deep.

The “lagoons” begin at Misery Bay, and extend west into Presque Isle State Park. The lagoons include three ponds: the Grave Yard Pond to the east, the Big Pond in the middle, and the Long Pond to the west. The Presque Isle Canoe and Boat Rental is located in the Grave Yard Pond just west of Misery Bay. The western end of the lagoons empties into Marina Lake, where the Presque Isle Marina is located. Only electric powered and unpowered boats (i.e., row boats and canoes) are permitted in the lagoons. The lagoons area is an interesting and tranquil place.

Marina Lake is also located inside Presque Isle Bay. The Presque Isle Marina is located inside this small lake. Marina Lake has its own channel into the Bay, which is about 10 feet deep. The channel to Marina Lake is visible from Dobbin's Landing at the foot of State Street in the City of Erie. This channel also has range markers to guide you into the marina.

Visit to read the full article. Includes information on shore fishing and boating.