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Fishermen enjoy Steelhead fishing in Cattaraugus Creek in Gowanda

The Enchanted Mountains offers anglers plenty of fishing opportunities.  You will eagerly await the opening of trout season in the spring or wait for the warm days of summer to cast your line in a quiet, peaceful stream and watch the clouds float along. For the hardier sportsperson, try ice fishing on our lakes during one of those sunny, brilliant wintry days.

Stream and Creek Fishing:

One of our most popular is Cattaraugus Creek, which borders our county on the north, and has been listed in the top 10 Steelhead Fishing sites by fishing magazines.  Other creeks that offer great trout fishing include Clear Creek, Ischua Creek, and Mansfield Creek.

Map and Guide for Steelhead Fishing in Cattaraugus Creek.
Or read more about this topic with the Guide to Steelhead Fishing in WNY.
The Top Inland Trout Streams in Cattaraugus County

Lake Fishing:

Fishing in the lakes of Cattaraugus County can offer year round fun.  We have Case Lake, Harwood Lake, New Albion Lake, Lime Lake, Quaker Lake, and Red House Lake. 

Read one fisherman's experience on Quaker Lake in Allegany State Park.
Fishing Guide for Small Lakes in Cattaraugus County


Our lakes, streams and creeks (over 62 sites!) are stocked with fish raised at the Randolph Fish Hatchery, a division of NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.   

Find the Hatchery's Stocking Schedule on NYS Dept of Conservation's site 


Fishing Licenses:

Information on NYS Fishing Licenses
Information on Seneca Nation of Indians Fishing Licenses

Note: If you are fishing on a Seneca Nation of Indians Reservation you need a SNI Fishing license but you do not need a NYS Fishing License on a SNI Reservation.

Find other Special Fishing Regulations for Cattaraugus County, including size, daily limits and methods. 

Don't have a fishing license?

There are two places to take the family fishing without a license and you pay admission.

More to read about Fishing:

New York's Amish Trail - Immerse yourself in a simpler way of life

Top 10 site for Steelhead Fishing

Cattaraugus Creek has been listed in the top 10 sites for Steelhead Fishing (rainbow trout fishing) by 2 outdoor magazines. Steelhead Trout AKA Rainbow trout are very similar to Salmon in both taste and habits. Unlike other areas of the United States, our native Rainbow trout (Steelhead Trout) spend a majority of time in Lake Erie a freshwater lake and spawn in the Cattaraugus Creek and other tributaries.

The following is from the New York State Dept. of Environmental Conservation's article "Steelhead Fishing in Lake Erie Tributaries"

Lake Erie's tributary streams, both big and small, receive an annual run of migratory rainbow trout called "steelhead." From October through April, thousands of steelhead ascend New York's Lake Erie tributaries on their mission to spawn. Excellent fishing opportunities await any angler who wishes to try their hand at steelhead fishing. Between the acrobatic leaps, long drag-screaming runs and rod quaking head shakes, the fight of an early run steelhead is a truly exhilarating experience.

Read more about Steelhead/Rainbow fishing on the Cattaraugus Creek

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