Fishing on the Delaware River


I’ve been fishing Chester County Pennsylvania for years, as far back as I can remember I was about six years old when I first came to the country United States from my hometown Dehradun India. Fishing has always been very big here in Downingtown, Pennsylvania, and the surrounding area. Waking up at 4 in the morning to attend the first day of fishing season and waiting for the local fishing rodeo locally was huge. Every year we would try to win the fishing rodeo, catching the biggest tagged trout. However not only trout, when not fishing at the Rodeo, we also fished for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, sunfish, catfish, perch, along with catching other local wildlife, ranging from Snakes, Frogs, Turtles, Salamanders, Crayfish, and more, doing what boys of our age do.

There definitely isn’t any other thrill in this world more exhilarating than the feeling of catching that prize fish. It’s a battle between man and nature with very thin fishing line, typically 2lb test. Ensuring the proper bait is used, the time of day, looking at clouds and how much the sun is peeking out through the clouds determine which bait to use. We prepared weeks in advance finding nightcrawlers at night and saving them in our buckets of dirt adding instant coffee, so the nightcrawlers have food to eat in our bucket destined to catch the big one.

However, this is not what I want to speak about today. I want to talk about my recent trip on the Delaware River. Although, I have fished the Delaware River multiple times in the past, typically, right off of the pier on Columbus Avenue in Philadelphia. I was able to catch many catfish. There’s nothing like reeling in a 35 lb Channel cat. On goers stop in their tracks to watch what’s on the other end of that line. They certainly put up a great fight, although not good for eating. In my opinion.


Last week I had the pleasure of launching a boat from Chester, Pennsylvania. A buddy of mine, who I’ve had the pleasure of knowing for years, invited me out on his boat. Out of the 30 plus years I have lived in this area I have never heard of the Stadium, Talen Energy Stadium, located in the heart of Chester, till now, and I don’t even know what the stadium is for, maybe it’s a baseball field maybe it’s a football field maybe it’s something else I don’t know I only saw the outside of it and I parked my car in the parking lot right next door to it and noticed it was a Launch site for boats.

Upon arrival I noticed my buddy had already launched the boat and was waiting for me, flagging me down with his arms raised in the air while trying to speak on his phone to me. I quickly gather my belongings in the car and went to join the launching of the boat. I was very excited, that day we were going for striped bass. Neither one of us brought live bait, we were using only artificial lures. I’ve had a lot of luck when using a white jig for catching Largemouth Bass and some were some rather Big River Monsters. We quickly sat inside of the 16.5-foot boat with a Honda 25 horsepower engine and were rocking and rolling on the Delaware River heading towards Schuylkill River Philadelphia at a cruising speed of 22 Miles Per Hour.

If you’ve never seen the shores from within the Delaware River ( you are seriously missing out on some beautiful scenery )

Some of the buildings and the architecture that I saw, gas line companies, reminded me of buildings that one would see during the industrial revolution. The Machinery was huge and could definitely tell they were Made for large cruise tanks possibly to lift large storage tanks on and off big boats. While others were built to launch newly constructed ships or to repair smaller ones.

Most of the water was approximately 40 ft deep. We used the fish finder to locate some fish, although we were cruising at a rather fast speed of approximately 20-22 miles an hour on the water and went on the natural instinct of over 34 years of fishing. The weather was great and it was by far the perfect day to be out on the water. As they say any day on the water, whether you catch a fish or not, is better than a day in the office. So true!

We launched at about 11 a.m. and I had work to do 5 p.m. and an hour journey between the launch site and fishing spot. I needed to be back at 5 p.m.. so we fished until about 3:30 p.m. and had approximately an hour boat ride back launch site. Hence we had a solid 3 1/2 hours of fishing time under our belt.

That day we caught a whole lot of nothing. We ended up in the Schuylkill River by Rt. 76 right below the waterfall and The Boathouse row in Philadelphia. With an amazing view of the Philadelphia Museum.

The absolutely beautiful sight just take a look!

My fishing buddy had two bites probably smallmouth bass I myself had a massive bite felt like striped bass, while other nibbles. Unfortunately, neither one of us landed a fish that day.

When on a boat that is not yours. Always trust your captain! I knew if we had live bait we would have caught something. However, those bottom-dwelling Catfish were not the fish that we were going for that day.

When returning to the launch site, we saw a few other fishermen. Most fishermen have something in common or not, they have a love to fish and that makes for great conversation. So one of the most famous questions one fisherman asks the other? Catch anything? The other fishermen replied well yes we did, we caught about 30-40 fish. Intrigued, I asked them, what kind of fish? Catfish one of them replied. What do you use for bait, I asked? Oh, we used chicken liver and bacon, the other replied.

Now I know there are huge catfish in that water. Many articles on the world wide web also state that the Delaware River has bull sharks. However, one truly does not understand the size of that River, unless you’re on it, on a boat, in the middle of it all. the ripples that some of the giant Cruisers made passing by us , literally felt like giant speed bumps in the water. Miniature roller coasters if you will.

As I grow older, finding the time to go out fishing becoming more and more difficult. Work obligations have limited my time. Last year I was only able to go out one time and I fished for trout . 30 minutes later, I caught my limit and could no longer fish. This is my first fishing trip in 2019 and I hope there will be more.

Maybe, just maybe, I’ll be able to write about my bluefin tuna fish trip next weekend, weather permitting.

I have attached some of the photos taken on my trip in the Delaware River along with this blog. I hope you enjoy it and Fish on. If you are into sightseeing, enjoy the water, enjoy boating, enjoy fishing or just want one A Day to travel someplace unique. Check out the Delaware River, you won’t be disappointed. There are boat rentals, Kayak rentals and more on the Delaware River.

However due to the sheer size of that river once you’re on it. Don’t take it for granted.

Fish on!



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