Schuylkill River Smallies



May 4, 2021
Berks County
I live just a few minutes from the river near Hamburg, PA.

I have several access points in the area...Hamburg Park, 5 Locks, could go up to Auburn I guess. Or south to Leesport or even down to River Road near Reading/Laurel Run Park.

Any stretches better to start with than another?
I can't be specific because of the amount of time that has passed. Not because it's any secret. But I had several incredible smaller days in the Shoey/Hamburg area. Schenks white streamer produced many fish on sever outings using public access on the Schuylkill. Explore. Enjoy!
Just put in an order with Big Y for a nice assortment of olive streamers, some poppers, some white/flash streamers too (muddlers, zonkers, etc).

My years of fishing on the Susquehanna say if they don't like white on a given day, they like olive. So...we'll see. I added some crayfish patterns, too.

I might try at 5 Locks to start and go from there.
Five Locks area from the canoe ramp upstream for 300 m at least is very shallow in summer and, as such, is poor habitat for adult SMB. That specific stretch of shoreline was one of the official Schuylkill R SMB YOY annual assessment sites, so I have seen that area frequently in July, but I am talking about the entire width of the river there as well.

As an aside, you will also find Chain Pickerel near-by, as YOY CP were captures with the YOY SMB with some frequency. The area is a pretty spot, but just does not have great summer habitat at least in the specific stretch that I have described.

Our next sampling site upstream was at Port Clinton, above and below the confluence of the Ltl Schuylkill, but on the opposite bank below and on the same bank above. Much better habitat and the adult fish we saw while sampling YOY supported that.

The next site below Five Locks was down from the Cross Keys bridge. Another spot with good habitat and decent adult populations.

Below, that was the River Road site. Good for adults sometimes, not so hot other times. I used to fish it a lot there. While there you may want to try the Class A BT pop in Laurel Run Park, which is right along River Rd. It is a short limestoner and loaded with BT up to about 11 in. Or you may want to try for Muskellunge. Great, and I mean great in spots, in the stretch from Cross Keys Rd down to Rt 12, Warren St Bypass.

The data show that SE Pa now has some of the BEST muskellunge and LMB populations in the state, but for some reason LMB get almost no attention in this forum.

This should get you started. Good luck.
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I have no ill will toward largemouth! I just usually think the river will hold more smallies. I’m open to the largemouths too!

Thank you very much for all the great info!