Places to Fish in Steuben County

At over 1,400 square miles and with four rivers, dozens of streams, as well as ponds and lakes, Steuben County offers a number of wonderful, scenic locations for outdoor recreation including some of the top places to fish in Region 8.

Thanks to the efforts of the New York State DEC, anglers are provided with access to various waterways in Steuben County through Public Fishing Rights (PFRs) which are “permanent easements purchased by the NYSDEC from willing landowners, giving anglers the right to fish and walk along the bank (usually a 33' strip on one or both banks of the stream).”

PFRs located in Steuben County include the following public fishing streams:

Cryder Creek

There are 5.8 miles of public fishing rights easements on this stream. The upper section located in Steuben County is also known as Marsh Creek and is home to wild brown trout and brook trout. For a general location map in PDF format, click here.

Keuka Lake Inlet

Located between the towns of Bath and Hammondsport, the majority of the Keuka Lake Inlet (also known as Coldbrook stream) is accessible through public easements. According to the DEC, the spring runs of wild rainbow trout and fall runs of brown trout offer some of the best seasonal trout fishing in New York State.” For a general location map in PDF format, click here.

Brook Trout Fishing
Bob Magee

Cohocton River

The lower portions of the Cohocton River contain stocked brown trout and an occasional wild brown trout or brook trout. Some large trout (over 20 inches) can be found in this portion of the river. For a general location map in PDF format, click here.

Mill Creek

One of the most productive wild trout streams in Region 8, Mill Creek is “supported entirely by naturally reproducing wild populations of both brook trout and brown trout and provides year round opportunities.” For a general location map in PDF format, click here. 

Neil Creek

Another good spot for wild brown trout. Neil Creek is managed under special county wide regulations; please review the Special Regulations by County for Region 8 (Steuben County) which can be found on page 41 of this PDF. For a general location map in PDF format, click here.

Fishing With Summit to Stream Adventures
Summit to Stream Adventures

For information on the following Steuben County Streams Stocked with Trout, click here.

Bennett Creek
Canaseraga Creek
Canisteo River
Cohocton River

Meads Creek
Post Creek


Before you explore the wonderful waterways in Region 8, please keep in mind the DEC’s warning to use alternatives to felt-soled waders to prevent the spread of didymo, an invasive algae that can negatively impact trout populations. According to the DEC, didymo has been found in several of New York's trout streams and could spread to other waters without proper precautions. Wading anglers are a primary means of spreading didymo and due to their porous nature felt-soled waders are more susceptible than rubber studded boots.

For more details about didymo including ecological impacts, how didymo is spread, and prevention information visit this DEC page.

Fly Fishing on the Chemung River

Other Waterways in which to fish in Steuben County.

Gulls Morning Fishing on Keuka Lake
Bob Magee

Keuka Lake

A popular fishing destination since the mid-1800s, Keuka Lake offers a wonderful variety of species including Brown Trout, Rainbow Trout, Lake Trout, Smallmouth Bass, as well as Landlocked Salmon. Other species include Alewife, Black Crappie, Bluegill, Northern Pike, Pumpkinseed, Rock Bass, Smelt, and Yellow Perch.

For information on special fishing regulations for Keuka Lake, visit:

Fishing Keuka Lake courtesy of Summit to Stream Adventures
Summit to Stream Adventures

Almond Reservoir

A man-made reservoir located in western Steuben County, the Almond Reservoir was created as part of a flood control project that resulted in a dam on Canacadea Creek. The surrounding landscape consists primarily of forested and lightly developed land.

Largemouth bass, black crappie, brown bullhead, common carp, golden shiner, pumpkinseed, spottail shiner, white sucker, and yellow perch are found in Almond Reservoir.

For fishing tips and regulations, visit the DEC's site. Ice Fishing is permitted on Almond Reservoir.

Birdseye Hollow Pond Hike by Nancy Peek
Birdseye Hollow Pond courtesy of Nancy Peek

Birdseye Hollow Pond

Located in Birdseye Hollow State Forest, Birdseye Hollow Pond is man-made. The surrounding landscape is primarily forested.

A variety of fish can be found, including banded killifish, black crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead, chain pickerel, common shiner, golden shiner, largemouth bass, pumpkinseed, and yellow perch.

For fishing tips and regulations, visit the DEC's site.

Sanford Lake

Sanford Lake, located in eastern Steuben County, is home to banded killifish, black crappie, bluegill, brown bullhead, chain pickerel, common shiner, golden shiner, largemouth bass, pumpkinseed, and yellow perch.

For additional information and regulations for fishing at Sanford Lake, visit the DEC's site.

River Fishing
Fly Fishing on the River

Rivers and Streams include:

Canisteo River

Stocked each year with brown trout, the Canisteo River is also home to smallmouth bass, largemouth bass, walleye, sunfish, brown bullhead, and common carp. Common methods include fly fishing, casting small spinners, and drifting live bait. For more information and regulations, click here.

Chemung River

Largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, muskellunge, tiger muskellunge, chain pickerel, yellow perch, bluegill, pumpkinseed, black crappie, rock bass, brown bullhead, golden shiner, white sucker, common carp. For tips on best times to fish, common methods, and regulations, click here.

Tioga River

You’ll find smallmouth bass, walleye, as well as brown bullhead, common carp, rock bass, sunfish, yellow perch, even trophy muskellunge. For tips and information on special fishing regulations, click here.

courtesy of Summit to Stream
Summit to Stream Adventures

Cohocton River

With wild brook trout as well as wild and stocked brown trout, the Cohocton River is another wonderful location for fishing. For more information about the Cohocton River, click here. For information on special regulations for fishing the Cohocton River, click here.

Fishing Whoa-Waneta
Summit to Stream Adventures

Waneta Lake & Lamoka Lake

Often referred to in tandem, Waneta and Lamoka are great for fishing from your kayak or canoe, from the shore, or on a boat. Located a short distance from Keuka Lake and connected to each other by a small channel, some guides offer fishing excursions on these two smaller lakes. 

A small section of crescent-shaped lake Lamoka, previously known as Mud Lake, is located in Steuben County and is known as Mill Pond. 

With so many waterways scattered throughout Steuben County, no matter where you choose to fish, you'll find an abundance of excellent craft breweries, wineries, and restaurants nearby, as well as other exciting outdoor adventures.

Start planning your next fishing excursion today. For information on places to stay and other fun things to do while you’re here, visit