HARRISBURG, Pa. (July 13) – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) and Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) are alerting anglers that effective Saturday, July 17, 2021, all seasons, sizes, and creel limits will be lifted on the Upper Pond, also known as the Group Camping Area Lake, located inside Raccoon Creek State Park in Beaver County.
This temporary regulation change will occur in anticipation of DCNR's plan to drain the 7.9-acre Upper Pond during fall 2021 to begin a floodplain restoration project. In 2022, DCNR plans to permanently remove the dam structure at the Upper Pond and initiate habitat restoration efforts to reclaim the original stream channel of Traverse Creek, which is currently impounded to form the pond.
"Since this is normally a catch-and-release pond, we encourage anglers to take advantage of this rare opportunity to harvest fish prior to the pond being drained," said David Nihart, Chief of the PFBC's Fisheries Management Division. "Anglers should expect to catch largemouth bass as well as popular panfish species including bluegill, pumpkinseed, and white crappie."
"We ask anglers to refrain from harvesting fish until this weekend," said Racoon Creek State Park Manager Albert Wasilewski. "Park staff remains committed to protecting waterways and natural habitats at Raccoon Creek. We appreciate cooperation from the public as we transition into implementing the restoration plan."
In addition to encouraging anglers to harvest fish during the temporary regulation change period, the PFBC and DCNR will conduct salvage operations to remove as many remaining fish as possible prior to the complete drawdown. All fish collected during the salvage will be stocked into nearby Raccoon Lake.
Signs indicating the temporary change in fishing regulations have been posted around the Upper Pond. A date for beginning fish salvage operations has not yet been announced.
PFBC Communications Director