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Harrisburg Area Fishing: Memorial Lake

Memorial Lake is an 85-acre lake with many opportunites for boaters and shore anglers to catch fish.
Memorial Lake is an 85-acre lake with many opportunites for boaters and shore anglers to catch fish.

Memorial Lake is located within Memorial Lake State Park in Lebanon County. Memorial is a man-made body of water that measures 85 acres and is a PFBC regulated lake under the Big Bass Program. Boating anglers can launch at the Lower Road or Middle Road day use areas; while a shoreline project, finished in November 2009, enhanced fish habitat offering anglers without a boat a great chance at hooking into fish from shore. Electric motors only are permitted and boat rentals are available Memorial Day to Labor Day.

Memorial Lake offers an expansive variety of fish species. Results from a 2005 survey taken by the PFBC showed largemouth bass, chain pickerel, northern pike, tiger musky, bluegill, black and white crappie, perch, bullhead catfish, carp and suckers all residing in the lake.

The two opposing corners of the lake, northwest and southeast, offer two differing fishing situations for anglers. The northwest corner is very shallow with waters from 1-5 feet. Here, the bottom structure consists of submerged stumps and several artificial fish habitats. These shallow depths are prime for pre-spawn bass and working a popper, lizard or shallow running jerkbait will induce strikes in the shallows. Early spring bass anglers should be looking for the drop off where the shallows beak into deeper water. April bass will be moving in and out of the shallows and spend most of their time at these sudden changes in depth.

The southeastern end of the lake has water in the 9-22 foot range where Texas-rigged worms, crankbaits and jigs work the best. Here, there have been over 70 porcupine crib structures placed to provide artificial structure for bass and pan fish. There is an open area at the spillway below the dam where beginning anglers or children can cast without fear of snagging in a tree.

Special thanks to Memorial Lake State Park for providing information on the specifics of the lake.

For more information on Memorial Lake, please visit, and for ice conditions visit,

To see the 2005 PFBC fish survey visit,



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