Fishing in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Fishing at a Glance

Pennsylvania is a paradise for all kinds of anglers, boasting an impressive 86,000+ miles of rivers and streams, as well as lakes and ponds. With its pristine waters and gorgeous scenery, this state is the perfect spot for a fishing adventure.

But before you jump right in, there are certain laws that need to be observed to ensure that your visit is legal. A license is required if you’re planning on catching any fish — you can pick one up at the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission website or in person at their offices.

Pennsylvania ranks #34 in the U.S. for fishing licenses per capita and has a good number of local fishing enhtusiasts with over 7.65% of the population having fishing licenses.

Key Insights

  • Pennsylvania has over 86,000 miles of rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds making it a paradise for anglers
  • A fishing license is required for anyone planning on catching fish in Pennsylvania and can be obtained online or in-person at Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission offices
  • Pennsylvania ranks #34 in the U.S. for fishing licenses per capita with over 7.65% of the population having fishing licenses

Table of Contents

Estimated Fishing Enthusiasts
Population: 13,002,700
Fishing Enthusiasts 995,240
Fishing License % 7.65%
Hunters Rank 34

The state of Pennsylvania is mostly private land with just 14.74% of acres considered public land -ranking #20 amongst all states.

Land Types (Acres)
Acres % Rank
Total 28,684,800
Public 4,228,290 14.74% 20
Private 24,456,510 85.26% 30
Tribal 0 0.00% no tribal land

Pennsylvania Fishing Licenses & Requirements

For the most accurate and updated information on fishing licenses and requirements, it’s always a good idea to check the Pennsylvania DNR. We’ve provided their contact information and other helpful information for your convenience here.

Pennsylvania DNR

2001 Elmerton Avenue
Harrisburg, PA 17110-9797

Unlock the Great Outdoors

Why limit yourself to public land when there are millions of acres of private land to explore.

The most popular types of fish to target in Pennsylvania’s rivers and streams are brown trout, rainbow trout, brook trout, steelhead, and salmon. Brown trout are typically found in larger rivers and can grow to be quite large, making them a challenge for even the most experienced anglers. Rainbow trout are more widespread and can be found in both large and small streams. They are known for their vibrant colors and fight hard when hooked. Brook trout are the state fish of Pennsylvania and can be found in cool, clear streams throughout the state. They are relatively small but provide a good challenge for fishermen. Steelhead are a type of rainbow trout that spend most of their lives in saltwater but return to freshwater to spawn. They are prized by anglers for their size and strength. Salmon is another saltwater fish that returns to spawn. Salmon can be found in Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie tributaries during the autumn months.

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We’re working with landowners all across Pennsylvania to provide private land access for more activities. Add your information below to stay up to date.

Fishing private land in Pennsylvania

Fishing on private land in Pennsylvania has some real advantages over public lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds *if you can get access. For instance, there’s nothing like having a quiet lake all to yourself and oftentimes there are simply more fish available to catch, because they haven’t been fished out. There are generally more processes for access private land for hunting than fishing, though some similar methods exist. For instance, you can sometimes join a fishing club in Pennsylvania or if you have the money, it may be possible to rent some private land for fishing. Another option is to knock on doors or work your contacts in an area to see if a landowner would let you fish for the day or possibly be open to a longer term arrangement.

Fortunately Wing It is simplifying land access for fishing, hunting, camping, and more. We’re adding new land every day and if we have some in your area, you’ll see some great options below.

1. Susquehanna River
2. Elk Creek
3. Kettle Creek
4. Allegheny River
5. Yellow Creek

Fishing private land in Pennsylvania

Fishing on private land in Pennsylvania has some real advantages over public lakes, rivers, streams, and ponds *if you can get access. For instance, there’s nothing like having a quiet lake all to yourself and oftentimes there are simply more fish available to catch, because they haven’t been fished out. There are generally more processes for access private land for hunting than fishing, though some similar methods exist. For instance, you can sometimes join a fishing club in Pennsylvania or if you have the money, it may be possible to rent some private land for fishing. Another option is to knock on doors or work your contacts in an area to see if a landowner would let you fish for the day or possibly be open to a longer term arrangement.

Fortunately Wing It is simplifying land access for fishing, hunting, camping, and more. We’re adding new land every day and if we have some in your area, you’ll see some great options below.

More Private Land Fishing

Kansas
• 552 acres •
Kansas
• 79 acres •
Kansas
• 152 acres •
Arkansas
• 1977 acres •
Kansas
• 307 acres •
Nebraska
• 3 acres •
  • Hunting
  • Fishing
  • Camping
  • Others activities
    • Kayaking
    • Turkey hunting by bow only
  • Hunting
  • Fishing
  • Camping
  • Others activities
    • Kayaking
    • Turkey hunting by bow only
Wing It - Access. Granted White

Coming in 2023!

We’re currently building the ultimate app for outdoor access.  Add your name and details below to save your spot and ensure you get access before the general public. 

Coming in Early 2023!
Guests - Get early access to private land.
Landowners - Increase your profit per acre.