Chautauqua Lake Fishing Reports, Information & Tips and

Updated: January 23rd, 2020

Chautauqua Lake is a Glacier – Naturally made Lake and is Spring and Artesian well fed along with a few Creeks. It is one of, if not the cleanest fresh water lakes in all of New York State. Approximately 18 miles long and up to 1 & ½ miles wide, with world famous muskie and small mouth bass fishing, as well as really good calico, perch, pan fishing, and walleye fishing.

Chautauqua Lake is about nine miles from Lake Erie and some fantastic Steelhead Creek fishing in the Spring and the late Fall. Although Lake Erie runs into the Atlantic, Chautauqua Lake is on the other side of the continental divide, 750 feet above Lake Erie’s level and its waters run into the Allegheny River going by Pittsburgh, PA, on its way to the Mississippi River and out the Gulf of Mexico. Chautauqua Lake is at the top of the food chain in that it’s waters are the cleanest they will ever be before heading down stream to the Gulf of Mexico.

There is Fantastic sailing weather, water-skiing, and boats of all shapes and sizes which makes Chautauqua Lake already a Favorite of so many…


Black Bass ( Largemouth & Smallmouth Bass ) Catch and Release only Season starts on December 1st thru the Friday preceding the 3rd Saturday in June. Artificial Lures only.

2020 Fishing Regulations for Chautauqua Lake.

Walleye Season from the 1st Saturday in May – March 15

Min. length = 15″                   Daily Limit  = 5

Large & Smallmouth Bass Season from the 3rd Saturday in June through November 30

Min. length = 12″                   Daily Limit  = 5

Muskie Season from the last Saturday in May – November 30

Min. length = 40″                   Daily Limit  = 1

Perch, Sunfish, Crappie & other Pan Fish Season is All Year…

Crappie is Min. 9” and a Daily Limit of 25 per day

Perch & Sunfish Daily Limit = 50

2019 Fishing Licenses: New York State Fishing License Information:

Resident = Season = $ 25.00 or a Senior = $ 5.00

Non-resident = Season = $ 50.00 or a Seven Day = $ 28.00 or a

One Day = $ 10.00


2018 Chautauqua Lake Annual Walleye and Musky Surveys.

  • We do not report on Ice thickness on Chautauqua Lake, nor does the Sheriff’s Department or anyone else for liability reasons.

NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

NY State Fishing Licenses at Hogan’s Hut

NY State Fishing License Online


Chautauqua Lake water level = normal = 1308.2 ft. above sea level.


Chautauqua Lake & Lake Erie Fishing Guides & Charters

We Wan Chu Cottages is open from May 1st through October 14th, 2019 with Cottage and Boat rental information at the top Menu bar of this page.

We see fishing exceptionally well in the Spring because…

1: It is so clear and no or little weeds.

2: The fish are hungry. Many a times a Walleye Fishermen in the Spring catches a Musky more often then a Walleye because Muskies are hungry too and the Muskies don’t know it is not Musky Season (May 28th, 2016 Musky Opens) as well as the waters being so very clear.

3: Cabin Fever: After being cooped up for the Winter, many a Fishermen come to Chautauqua Lake because of the fine eating fish as well as being able to get out on the water. Chautauqua Lake at its worst is maybe three footers. Maybe three and a half footers max. Nothing like waves on one of the Great Lakes or an Ocean.

4: We rent the Best 16 ft. rental boats on Chautauqua Lake with 16 ft. Lund’s w/ 15 H.P. & 20 H.P Honda outboard motors. The most reasonable rental boats along with two nice centric seats


5: Many a guest do not bring or rent a boat and just Fish off of our huge Dock area which goes from zero to four and a half foot deep but with a decent cast at the end of our Dock, your bait lands in 17 ft. of water. Past the drop off and on the outside of the eventual weed line. Sweet… Nice… Awesome Dock Fishing for the Kids & Family & Friends…


6: As the water warms up, Walleye move into the shallows at night to feed. In the first week fishermen are trolling or casting at night from maybe three to six feet of water. The Walleye are looking for that 55 degree water which warms up closer to shore first. The next week we may find the Walleye at night in six to ten feet of water. It all depends on how the Spring time warms up. And it all happens right in front of our Docks the whole month of May because our Dock lights stay on all night long drawing the fish in for their food… Honestly…


North Basin:

South Basin:





(Click on image to view a High Quality version)

8-inch, 8-ounce caught and released Perch by Justin Wiemer

49-inch, 34-pound Musky caught and released by Bret Apthorpe