Spring a great time to enjoy outdoors in York area

  • By April, the nearby Susquehanna Flats will be teeming with huge striped bass.
  • April 30 marks the first day of the month-long spring turkey season.
  • Pennsylvania offers some of the best freshwater fishing in the East.

We did it.

We made it through another winter. We still have two more days until the official start of spring, but it's close enough.

Now the hard part begins. It's time to decide what to do with all this extra sunlight on our side. It is a tough decision, not because of a lack of things to do, but because there are so many possibilities. It's impossible to do it all. Dare I admit … it’s frustrating.

Every spring, thoughts of saltwater fishing infiltrate my head and take my thoughts hostage. Anybody who knows me knows that I become annoyingly obsessed until I get that first breath of salt air each spring.

But I argue my annual obsession is well founded. The fishing in this area's nearby tidal waters is nothing short of phenomenal in the spring. The waters of New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland are filled with species such as tautog, black drum, weakfish and bluefish, all looking to fatten up after a long, cold winter.

One of the first fish to arrive in the area are striped bass. By April, the Susquehanna Flats, only a short drive south of York County, will be teeming with huge striped bass as they complete their annual spawning migration. For an unforgettable experience, forget about bait and try using a fly rod in the shallow water of the flats. It’s the ultimate thrill.

Even if you don't enjoy saltwater fishing, you still have plenty of difficult decisions to make. Pennsylvania offers some of the best freshwater fishing in the East.

Whether it's fishing for smallmouth bass in the Susquehanna River, or pike and musky in the state's many lakes and reservoirs, springtime in Pennsylvania offers it all.

Tautog fishing will soon be at its peak in the mid-Atlantic region.

Trout fishing is always, by far, the most popular springtime angling activity. Why shouldn't it be? It offers something for everybody, no matter the age or skill level. It doesn't matter if you use a $1,000 bamboo fly rod or a $10 rod with Snoopy on the reel, you'll have fun catching trout.

Turkey hunting: Hunting complicates the spring decision-making process even more. April 30 marks the first day of the month-long spring turkey season. This is a great time of the year to head north and take advantage of some great warm-weather hunting. The spring gobbler season is the last chance until October to bag a trophy turkey.

Trout stocking a sure sign of spring

No matter what you choose to do this spring, chances are you'll have a great time doing it. Springtime is an excellent time of the year to get outside and enjoy the unlimited angling and hunting opportunities this area has to offer.

Hopefully, you can find a way to do it all. If not, there’s always next year.

Andy Snyder writes about the outdoors for The York Dispatch. He can be reached at sports@yorkdispatch.com.