Young anglers and their adult mentors can get an early start to trout season by fishing one of 12 waters on March 23, the weekend before the regional opening day.

The 12 waters identified today by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) are part of the Mentored Youth Trout Day program, a new pilot project begin launched within the 18-county southeast area that makes up the regional opening day.

“The Commission is piloting the Mentored Youth Trout Day as part of its goal to keep young anglers and their families fishing,” said PFBC Executive Director John Arway. “The pilot program gives us the opportunity to gauge interest and to determine the feasibility of expanding the program across the state.”

Under the program, kids under the age of 16 must register with the PFBC before joining a mentor angler, who must have a current fishing license and trout permit. They will then be able to fish on the Saturday before the southeast opener on the select waters from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Waters included in the pilot are listed below.

“The waters will be stocked to ensure a plentiful supply of fish to catch for the youth day and the regular season to follow,” said Laurel Anders, PFBC director of Boating and Outreach.

On-line registration is currently available on the PFBC website at: Paper registration forms will be available at many of the Mentored Youth Trout Day locations starting Feb. 1, 2013.

“Registration is free and youth will have the opportunity to receive a free one-year subscription to the Pennsylvania League of Angling Youth (PLAY) newsletter,” added Anders. “The PLAY newsletter is written for young anglers and includes articles and activities on fish, fishing, and PA’s aquatic resources published four times each year.”

The 12 waters in the program include (by county):

  • Adams – Waynesboro Reservoir
  • Berks – Antietam Lake
  • Berks – Scotts Run Lake
  • Bucks – Levittown Lake
  • Cumberland – Children’s Lake
  • Cumberland – Doubling Gap Lake
  • Dauphin – Middletown Reservoir
  • Lancaster – Muddy Run Recreational Lake
  • Lebanon – Lions Lake
  • Lehigh – Lehigh Canal, Section 8
  • Montgomery – Deep Creek Dam/Green Lake
  • Schuylkill – Locust Lake

Each person will be permitted to keep a combined species total of two fish and the fish must be at least 7 inches in length. Other Commonwealth inland regulations will apply on this day. It is unlawful to fish in waters designated under the Mentored Youth Trout Fishing Day Program without a valid fishing license or without being accompanied by a registered youth.

Visit Mentored Youth Trout to register or to find additional information.

The regional opening day of trout is March 30. The statewide opening day of trout is April 13.

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