Deer, Bear, Fowl, Steelhead and Salmon Season Opens

By Brian Minich

The summer is rapidly transitioning into fall. Leaves are changing, adding more color to the hills and valleys every day. The nights are very cool and the days are not so warm. I’m sorry to say, summer is over. Not to worry. Fall brings its own unique opportunities, not to mention that it may be the prettiest time of year.

Take to the Woods October 1

This change in weather signifies the beginning of the hunting season. Many sportsmen are gearing up to spend their time in the woods chasing the many different species of game in our area. Hunters have already taken to the woods and water for squirrel and early goose, but Oct. 1 starts the archery deer and the beginning of the big game season.

Pennsylvania hunters will also be taking to the woods on Oct. 5 for the opening day of archery and the beginning of their hunting season.

Hunters will occupy the woods from now until mid-December chasing nature’s bounty with deer, bear, turkey, grouse, pheasant, squirrel, and waterfowl being the most popular. Hunting season seems to come and go very quickly. Most avid hunters have been anticipating the start of this season since the end of season last year!

Fall Fishing Frenzy

The fall season also brings great opportunities for fishing. The bass, walleye, pike and musky are starting to feed up for the long winter. This means that they are not as picky as they had been in the heat of the summer.

These fish will feed at any opportunity and are very susceptible to both live bait and lures. You can even try some bigger baits and faster retrieves, because the fish will get very aggressive as the water gets colder. Although this is a good season for catching these fish as they load up for winter, there are a couple other species that are doing just the opposite and may be even more popular.

Fall marks the time when steelhead and salmon make their annual spawning run from the depths of Lake Erie and Lake Ontario into the streams and rivers where they were born. Thousands of anglers will take to these Great Lakes tributaries in both New York and Pennsylvania in chase of these hard-fighting and acrobatic fish.

Nothing is quite the same as the explosion of a salmon or steelhead when first hooked. With steelhead averaging 5-10 pounds and salmon that can grow to over 40 pounds, it is not hard to imagine why these fish draw such a large number of anglers.

With both hunting and fishing in full swing, it is sometimes hard to decide what to do if you are passionate about both.


William Shakespeare’s wrote the famous line “to be, or not to be.” But to the fall season sportsmen in this area I say, “To hunt or to fish? That’s the question.”

(Brian Minich is a seasoned outdoor adventure guide who can be reached at