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280 Kane St. STE #2
South Williamsport, PA
United States

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Our Rose Valley Walleye

Our Rose Valley Walleye

I reached out to a friend of mine and asked if he’s been doing any fishing. No. I’m way too busy man but let’s give it a try sometime. Anything going on Friday? SCORE. We made plans to meet up at the East boat launch before the sunrise. Rose Valley Lake is the largest body

I reached out to a friend of mine and asked if he’s been doing any fishing. No. I’m way too busy man but let’s give it a try sometime. Anything going on Friday? SCORE. We made plans to meet up at the East boat launch before the sunrise.

Rose Valley Lake is the largest body of water in Lycoming County. The man-made reservoir covers 389 acres, and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission manages it. I told you last week that Rose Valley is an extremely popular destination for local paddlers, but its primary use is for recreational fishing.

Located just a few miles north of Williamsport, Rose Valley can be fished year round. She yields an assortment of different warm water species. We catch a ton of largemouth bass and pickerel during the spring and summer. Ice fishermen routinely harvest a healthy population of yellow perch and monster panfish. There are a few muskies and some walleye in Rose Valley, but finding these larger fish can be quite difficult. #foreshadowing.

Ian Scott and I have only known each other for a few years. He’s a great dude, and we both love the outdoors. Ian grew up on Rose Valley Lake and is a master of catching the big ones. I was ecstatic when he invited me to go trolling from his boat again. I am more of a stream fisherman, and I am actually getting bored with catching trout. Besides, I wanted to land a 20-inch walleye. It’s on my bucket list.

Rose Valley Lake was constructed in the mid-60s, and the idea of this recreational facility was tossed around for quite some time. It took eight years for the Fish and Boat Commission to build her. They blocked and redirected Mill Creek by creating a dam that measured 25 feet high and 410 feet long. The water eventually poured into the basin to form the existing 389 acres.

Rose Valley was officially dedicated on June 24, 1973. Funding for the project came from the state as well as a grant from the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation. The project also included three boat launches and parking. The same goes for Lake Road and the new bridge. The Commission eventually reimbursed four property owners. The existing parcels included some farmland but mostly swamp and wetlands.

I touched base with Ian the night before. One. I didn’t want him to feel obligated. Maybe he was out celebrating. #fourth. Second. My ten-year-old son wanted to tag along. What? His baseball season is now over, and he said he wanted to start fishing again. Are you feeling OK, J?

Ian confirmed, and his boat was already in the water when we pulled in. Jensen was out of bed and ready by 5:00 a.m. It’s a miracle. What happened to my son? There wasn’t any traffic as we were the only crazies on the lake. Who goes fishing at dawn the day after a late night of fireworks?

Ian provided the tackle, and we started trolling the weed beds and structures with our lindy rigs. It’s a totally different kind of fishing, but Ian is a great teacher. Jensen did great as he was paying close attention to his line. We each caught a few bass by 6:30 a.m. and all of the sudden my rod tipped. I immediately set the hook and felt something big. Jensen. Here take this. Nice and easy.

Walleye are very strange fish. Once they are hooked, they almost feel like a snag. When they get closer to the surface or boat, the real fun begins. Jensen did his best. This fish didn’t want to give in. Ian finally grabbed her with the net. High fives. Our first walleye over 20 inches — a total team effort.

Special thanks to Ian for the assist on a great father-son memory. Rose Valley Lake. A great asset to Lycoming County. Cheers.

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