By: Jacob Tumminello, Communications Intern
Although Pittsburgh created its legacy primarily in the steel industry, those familiar with the drastic improvement in the quality of its waters will tell you that the rivers are home to a wide variety of large and small fish. Pittsburghers are often unaware of the quality fishing available in the area. Throughout the years anglers have taken advantage of the many popular fishing spots, allowing for enjoyable recreational outings and a great fishing experience.
The rivers of Pittsburgh experienced a dramatic decrease in pollution following cleanup efforts after the steel mills closed and now provide a stable ecosystem for freshwater life. For almost 50 years cleanup and conservation efforts have restored the waterways, allowing fish populations to stabilize enough for residents to fish the water either recreationally or to consume what they catch.
Venture Outdoors and the TriAnglers program take full advantage of the rivers by dedicating efforts toward providing an enjoyable break from the day’s monotony to relax and catch some fish and to provide participants with important information about the waterways and ecosystems.
Pittsburgh’s rivers contain upwards of 70 different species of fish. Regularly caught species include bass, catfish, sauger, carp, walleyes, and crappies. Some of the more exotic fish found in the rivers include musky, gar, and even paddlefish. Of the many species of fish in Pittsburgh’s rivers only some are safe to consume, and many have limitations on catch and release. It’s important to review information from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission about requirements for particular species of fish.
Pittsburgh also offers many convenient locations for catching plenty of fish. There are many accessible fishing points along the three rivers. Although some may increase their chances of catching fish while boating, others will be pleased to know there are many places where fishing from land is a viable option.
TriAnglers is typically stationed on the North Shore underneath the Roberto Clemente Bridge. The riverfront offers plenty of space for participants to fish the Allegheny with ease. Our TriAnglers regularly report catching catfish, walleye, and various types of bass and carp.
Across the river from TriAnglers anglers can try their luck at the Point where the three rivers conjoin. This one location provides access to various fish inhabiting any of the three rivers and comes with a spectacular view of the city.
Another popular access point along the Allegheny River is the Highland Park Dam located downstream from the Highland Park Bridge. Walleyes are regularly caught along the dam, and anglers also report great fishing around the pylons of the actual bridge.
Although the Monongahela remains a bit murkier than the Allegheny, anglers can still find fishing spots with some effort. Nine Mile Run is a stream running through the Pittsburgh city limits that was restored after the focus on steel mills left it heavily polluted. Though some areas should still be avoided, after parking in designated area off Lancaster Avenue, a trail leads to where the run meets the river.
There are countless other fishing spots within the city of Pittsburgh, and even more in the surrounding areas. The city’s efforts to revive its waterways have created an ideal fishing environment for beginners and professionals for many years to come. Those who are unsure of where to start can seek free assistance from our knowledgeable Trip Leaders during TriAnglers lunch time fishing every Wednesday from 11:30 AM to 1 PM. Be sure to contact Venture Outdoors by phone or online, and happy fishing!