August Fishing Sessions: 08/06 - Revisiting the Concourse & Centennial Lakes (West Philadelphia, PA)

Hello, Blog Readers! 

Before anything else, I would like to thank Melony Roy for writing an article and interviewing me on Urban Fishing in Philadelphia. The interview aired yesterday on KYW 1060 radio station; however, for those who missed it, the online version of the interview is on the CBS website. Thus, many thanks to CBS and KYW as well! 

Now, here is my fishing report for August 6th:

--- August 6th, 2015 ---

Location: Centennial & Concourse Lake (West Philadelphia, PA)
Time: 9:30 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Fishes caught:

-- 3 Bluegill (Lepomis macrochirus)
-- 3 Green Sunfish (Lepomis cyanellus)
-- 1 Pumpkinseed (Lepomis gibbosus)

Additionally, the following Species were caught...

-- 2 American Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana)


Since this fishing session was so short and nothing extraordinary was caught, there is only a video of a frog:

Don't forget to watch it in HD (1080p50)! If you enjoy watching my videos, please support my YouTube Channel by liking and subscribing. More likes and more subscribes = more videos in the future. :)


The goal for the day was to get interviewed by the KYW reporter in a natural environment. Since I didn't really go to Concourse and Centennial Lakes for quite a while, I chose them to be the site of the interview.


My setup for this fishing session consisted of a Daiwa Spinmatic Ultralight rod with a Shimano Sedona 500 FD and 4lbs Berkley Vanish Fluorocarbon line. Throughout the course of the day, I used the following types of rigs/baits/lures: (1) A Missile Baits' D-Bomb on a 5/0 Gamakatsu worm hook; (2) a 5" Gary Yamamoto Senko on a 2/0 Gamakatsu worm hook; (3) a 1" Gulp! Alive Minnow on a 1/64 oz. Trout Magnet jighead, under an Eagle Claw weighted float; and (4) a Trout Magnet on a size #8 Eagle Claw hook


After getting contacted by a reporter from the KYW 1060 radio station, we scheduled to meet down at the Concourse & Centennial Lakes for a brief interview. I decided to choose these two Lakes in West Philly because it had been quite a while since I went down there.

Upon arrival, I was very surprised to see Concourse Lake filled with vegetation! I had fished Concourse in the past and there was some vegetation, but I don't remember it being that bad. The water level was also much lower than two years ago. Below are a couple photos of Concourse Lake back in 2013:

The Concourse Lake in 2013 -- regardless of vegetation, still "fishable."

Population of stunted Sunfish at Concourse Lake, back in 2013. 

 I didn't really take many scenery photos of the Lake nowadays; however, I can tell you folks that the whole place was choked with vegetation! Even the open pockets of water were filled with algae and other types of plants. Quite sad! 

While being interviewed by the reporter from the KYW 1060 radio station, I fished concourse for a good thirty minutes or so. I ended up landing two American Bullfrogs and no fish. Absolutely no Largemouth Bass (Micropterus salmoides)! 

The curious thing about Concourse Lake is that I have seen Largemouth Bass in it, back in 2013. That was when my friend Mike Hsiao from 1Rod1ReelFishing was still around Philadelphia; thus, I sent him down there to scout the place for Bass. At the end of the day, both of us were surprised -- he hadn't caught a single Bass and there were no signs of Bass anywhere!

However, according to locals, there are Largemouth Bass in it. I.e.:

This fella is probably the biggest Concourse Lake Bass that I have seen up to date. It was caught by my friend John L.

Anyways...after fishing Concourse for a while, I decided to downsize my lures, targeting smaller Species of fish. I hit Centennial Lake for forty-five minutes and went back to Concourse for about ten minutes. I finished the day with a couple different Species of Sunfish, not to mention that I caught my first ever Centennial Lake Pumpkinseed! At least that was rewarding. Hah.

Interestingly enough, all the Sunfish at Centennial Lake were hitting very very close to shore. Also, there was a Great Blue Heron there all the time. My assumption was that the fish were really looking for food around the shallows, since the Lake didn't really have any food source in the middle. Quite sad... 


Below are the photos for this fishing session:

Say hi to froggy, my friends. This little greedy fella hit my D-Bomb on a size 5/0 Gamakatsu hook! It was safely released, though. No frog legs for dinner. Haha

A very beautiful Bluegill sample from the Centennial Lake in West Philadelphia.

My first ever Pumpkinseed from Centennial Lake! Notice its big eyes? Different than the fish's flesh, which is its muscle, the eye grows naturally year after year regardless of food consumption. In other words, a fish's body may not grow as much if a place lacks food; however, the eye will still grow at its natural ratio. Because of this, very big eyes in small fishes are usually used to portray stunted populations of fish. From this alone, we can conclude that Centennial Lake really doesn't have a lot of food available for its fishes.

It's pretty rare to find Green Sunfish in Ponds and Lakes around here. Most of them are in Creeks and Rivers. This nice sample came out of the Concourse Lake, which is actually also the place were I pulled my personal best Green Sunfish! 

Additional Photo:

June 12th, 2013 -- I caught my biggest ever Green Sunfish that day, topping 0.55lbs on the digital scale. Definitely a trophy for Concourse Lake! 

Best of luck to all of us,

Long Days and Pleasant Nights,


Leo S.


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