Gogal Publishing Company

GPS Fishing Guide to PA for iPhone & iPad


To make the most of this app, we highly recomment you explore this tutorial. The tutorial is formatted for mobile devices but can be viewed on your computer as well. You'll find many tips and tricks to enhance your experience.















Fish PA - GPS Guide is a unique GPS enabled fishing app designed to help you find and navigate to endless fishing opportunities across Pennsylvania.

It features a complete fishing map of all the rivers, streams, lakes and ponds in Pennsylvania.

Find your ideal fishing spot using roadmaps, satellite images, or USGS topographic maps.

Navigate with turn-by-turn driving directions. Then. hike in using your phone as a handheld GPS.

Target almost 5000 predefined fishing spots or use the map to find your own honey hole.

Save your spots as GPS enabled waypoints and share them with your friends.

It's all here in Fish PA-GPS Guide.

Many of the features included in this app are self explanatory so we've limited this tutorial to only those features that require additional explanation.

If you cannot find what you need or have additional questions, feel free to contact us via email.




When you first launch the app, the map will open in compass mode centered on your current location. As you move your phone around, the map will rotate to indicate your present direction of view. To exit compass mode, simply move the map slightly with your finger and the map with then reorient itself to north-up mode.

At the top of the map, you'll see three control buttons. On the far right is the "Target" button. This button is designed to center the map display on your last selected "Target". You must first set a "Target" to activate this function. We'll cover Target operation later.

Directly to the left of the "Target Button" is the "Current Location Button". This button centers the map display on your current location and turns compass mode back on. Remember, just move the map slightly to switch compass mode off. At first this may seem confusing but we'll cover the reasons for this design later when we discuss handheld GPS operation.

At the top left of the map, you'll find the "Refresh Button". This button is used to refresh the map display when loading additional content.

Directly to the right of the "Refresh Button" is an empty area reserved for displaying the distance and compass bearing to your your last selected "Target". You must first set a "Target" to activate this function.

As you pan and zoom around the map, you'll notice that there is a great deal of fishing information superimposed over the background layer.

To help explore and understand this information in detail, let's first change the background map so that we can focus exclusively on the fishing information.

To do this, choose the"Settings" tab. Once the settings page has opened, choose "Background Map". Here you can change the background map that is displayed under the fishing information. Let's choose "Plain White Background" for now and return to the map.

Now try zooming your map out until you can see the entire state of Pennsylvania on your screen. You'll notice, the state is filled with colored lines and pushpins.

The colored lines you see indicate every stream lake and pond included on the PFBC's printed maps and online county guides. The pushpins indicating predefined searchable fishing destinations along these streams. There are almost 5000 searchable destinations included.

Now let's slowly zoom in to Northcenteral PA letting the map refresh periodically. As you zoom, you'll notice that individual streams become clearer and the density of pushpins increases. Continue to zoom in slowly until a second thinner set of stream lines appear colored red and light blue on the map. In addition to the PFBC's streams, we've also included the equivalent of a very famous "Streams Map of Pennsylvania" in your app.

In addition to the thin red and light blue streams, a set of yellow number markers should also have appeared on the map. These markers indicate the upstream limit of a particular stream section. Use these numbers to target a specific stream section that is being stocked with trout and an indicator of the direction a stream flows.

Now let's change the background map to USGS. As you view USGS topographic maps for the first time, each map you see is downloaded and stored on your phone. for later use with or without phone service. As you explore the USGS maps for the first time, you see a a map tile missing, Just tap the "Refresh" button to fill in the missing tile.service.




Thick lines colored Green, Purple, Orange, Dark Blue or Brown show streams managed by PFBC. These include Trout Stocked Waters, Special Regulation Trout Waters, Class A Trout Waters, Wilderness Trout Waters and waters under Warmwater/Coolwater Fisheries managemant including Bass, Muskie, Walleye, Pike, Pickerel waters and more. In the app, you can target waters holding speecific species or under specific regulations by using the Search Menu which we'll cover later..

Pushpins indictate preprogrammed destinations along the PFBC managed streams mentioned above. You can touch a pushpin to reveal additional information and link directly from a detials page for that destination. We'll discuss the details page later as well.

Thin lines colored Red show additional streams listed as Naturally Reproducing Trout Streams by PFBC.

Thin lines colored Lighe Blue represent the rest of the streams in Pennsylvania with no fishing currently available.

Green Flags indicate waypoints saved by the individual user. Waypoints will be covered later in this tutorial.




In addition to exploring fishing opportunities on the map, you can also use the built-in search menu to explore any of the more than 5000 predefined fishing points and target fishing destinations using specirfic criteria to find just the type of fishing you desire. We won't go through every menu option as most are self explanitory however there are a few key concepts you'll need to know to make the most of this tool. To access the search menu, choose Menu on the bottom navigation tab.

The search menu allows you to search fishing locations that meet your search criteria in two different ways. In most cases, you'll want a list in distance order from your current location. By default, the app provides the list in this manner. You'll notice at the top of the menu page that "Current Location" is listed in the title bar. When you choose choose any search criteria, a list of results appears with up to 35 predefined fishing destination listed from closest to farthest from you current location. Try "List Closest Fishing". You will probably recognize many of these fishing locations. Note that each stream name is preceeded with a number. This number prefix indicates the stream's section number as listed in the PFBC stocking lists. "3-Pine Creek" would indicate that this predefined fishing location was on Section 3 of Pine Creek.

Let's now return to the menu and look at another way to use this search menu. Suppose you want to explore fishing opportunities near a different town. To do this, choose the "Settings" tab and "Change Menu Search Setting". Now tap "A Different City" and a search box appears. Tab the search bar and type "wellsb" and then tap the "Search Button". You then receive a list of towns listed in distance order that contain the words you typed. Scroll down the list until you see "Wellsboro - Tioga County" and tap that result.

Tap the "Menu" tab again and on the top bar, you'll notice the text shows Wellsboro. This indicates that all listings will now be presented in distance order from the center of Wellsboro PA. Lets choose "List Closest Fishing" again and you'll see Lake Nessmuk is closest to Wellsboro ant 1.4 miles away. IMPORANT NOTE - Your results will continue to show from Wellsboro or any other chosen town until you go back into settings and change the search setting back to "Current Location". Please do that now.

Let's now say you are looking at the PFBC Trout Stocking List and see that Section 2 of Pine Creek is going to be stocked on Wednesday and you'd like to fish there. From the menu, choose "Search All Fishing Waters". Now enter 2-pine into the search bar. You will receive a number of destinations for Section 2 of Pine Creek however there are many streams named Pine Creek and you 'll want to make sure you are going to the right one. In the results, we also list the municipality and county in which that destination is located.




Choose any destination from the Results list to open a "Details" page for that location.  On this page you'll find detailed information about this particular destination including fish species, fishing regulations along with seasons, size and creel limits for every species. You can also open the "Details: page from the map by tapping any pushpin then tapping the information bubble. This gives you direct access to regulatory information right from the map. Let's look at some of the functions on this page.

Tap the "Star" button at the top of the page to save this destination in a "Favorites" list that you can access from the menu. Tap the star again to remove it from your "Favorites".

Also on the "Details" page you'll see a green "GO" button. Touching the "GO" button launches your device's navigation softwareand you'll see your destination's longitude and latitude already set.  Just enter your starting point "Current Location" and you're on your way with turn-by-turn directions to that destination.

For those who may wish to use other GPS devices for turn-by-turn navigation, you can copy the destination coordinates from the your navigation software to any GPS device you choose.  This is useful for those who use this app on a Wi-Fi only device or who prefer their car GPS for navigation.

Now close your navigation app and repopen Fish PA - GPS Guide. You should still be on the details page you left. At the top right of the details page is a Target button.




From the details page above, tap the Target button to set this predefined fishing locations as your "Target". You will be taken to the map which is now centered on a target symbol that shows the destination from the details page you left. Now move the map so the target is not visible and then tap the Target button on the map. The map recenters on the target.

In addition to predefined fishing locations, you can also set any waypoint as a "Target". As mentioned, we'll cover waypoints later. It is important to know that a target remains on the map until you set a new target. This acts as a reminder of the last place you looked at. You can clear the target completely in the settings menu.

After setting a target, you will notice on the top bar of the map that new information is added. When a target is set, the distance and compass bearing from your current location to that target is displayed. This is a very useful tool when hiking in the wilds.




Waypoints are a powerful way to store your own custom destinations and record your own notes or fishing logs, then target those destinations for navigation in the future. You can also share your custome waypoints with friends.

To add a custom waypoint, touch the map for 2 seconds at the location youwant the waypoint added. A green flag should appear on the map to designate your waypoint. Touch the flag and an infomation bubble will open with location information.. Touch the information bubble and the waypoint utility menu will open. You can chose "Remove" to delete the waypoint or "GO" to pass the waypoint coordinates to your navigation software for immediate turn-by-turn driving directions.

Tap the "Data" button to view or edit the waypoint details. You can name your waypoint by tapping the "Name" field and add notes by tapping the "Notes" field. You can also manually edit the latitude and longitude coordinates. When you save a new waypoint, the app stores the date it was created. If you later edit or add more notes to an existing waypoint, the app stores the date you made the change as the last modified date for that waypoint.

The Set as Target button will set this waypoint as the new "Target". You can also do this using the "Target" button at the top.

Use the Share Waypoint button to email the coordinates and details of this waypoint to a friend.

Be sure to touch the Check button which saves your waypoint data before existing. Once you have saved your data, use the waypoints button at the top to ses a list of all your saved waypoints. From this screen, you can create additional waypoints and manage your existing waypoints.




On the settings page, you'll find the following controls

Change Menu Search Setting- Sets the geographic location from which menu searches are run and results are listed. Choose from your current location or any Pennsylvania city.

Background Map - Set the base map to view USGS, roadmap, satellite, hybrid map or plain white background.  One important note!   There is a limit to how far you can zoom in on the map when set to USGS.  When you exceed this limit, the USGS will disappear and you'll see only a satellite view.

Display Fishing Map - When set to "Yes", you see fishing information superimposed over the background map.

Fishing Map Opacity - Allows you to vary the transparency of the fishing map layer to see the underlying map.

Display Current Location - Enables and disables the current location indicator on the map.  This is a useful tool for battery management.

Display / Distance / Bearing - Enables and disbles the display of distance and bearing calculations when a target is set. This is a useful tool for battery management.

Latitude / Longitude Format - Changes the format for entering custom waypoints using latitude and longitude coordinates.

Clear Map Cache - Removes USGS maps that have been stored on you device for offline use.  This is an important tool to manage you device's available space and when fishing map updates are released..

Clear Target - Clears the set target and removes it from the map.

Clear Waypoints fromMap - Removes waypoint flags from the map.

Delete Waypoints from Database - Permanently delets all custom waypoints.

Export Waypoints - Exports custom waypoints and data. This builds a custom file that can be emailed to a friend or to yourself if you replace your phone. Opening the file on another iOS device will add all the exported waypoints to the new device. The new device must have Fish PA - GPS Guide installed first to import waypoints.




IMPORTANT NOTE:  Using your device offline as a handheld GPS is battery intensive and can significantly reduce your battery life.  In addition, the storage of maps on your phone for offline use is limited by the available space on your phone.  Be sure to read the sections "Battery Life" and "Map Storage" below to maximize your experience.  NEVER rely solely on electronic devices when traveling in the State Game Lands!  You should always carry a printed map and compass and know how to use them for your own safety.

This app stores USGS topographic maps internally on your device for later offline use when the USGS map is visible.  To prepare your phone for offline use at a specific location, You will need to browse all areas and all zoom levels you would like to have available when your device loses Internet connectivity. Take your time to make sure you cover the entire area at all zoom levels.  Essentially if you have seen the particular area of the USGS map at a particular zoom level, that areas will be available offline but areas you did not browse will not.  Ideally just browse the map while connected along your anticipated course at every level of detail you would like to have available and the app will take care of the rest.  Remember to use the refresh button if a USGS map tile is missing while you browse.  Also remember that after you zoom to a certain level, the USGS map will disappear.  If this happens, just zoom back out until it reappears and be sure to allow time for all the tiles to load.  This vanishing behavior will occur whether you have a connection or not.




The storage of USGS maps on your device for offline use can fill significant storage space.  If you find yourself running out of space, You can free up space on your device by choosing the "Clear Map Cache" on the "Settings" page.  This will remove all stored maps.  You can  always reload the maps you need at a later time. 

From time to time we may update the available maps.  If you have old maps stored on your device, you will not have access to the updated maps until you have removed the old maps. We have added in-app messaging to inform you when our maps have been updated.




Using your device as a handheld GPS is battery intensive.  These suggestions can help to  maximize your battery life.

1.  When using the app for navigation in your car, use a car adapter to power the device so that you'll have a full charge when you reach your Game Land destination and head into the wilds.

2.  Close apps you are not currently using.  Once an app is open on your Apple device, that app continues to run in the background until you close it even if you are not using the app currently.  To close unused apps, double tap the Home Button.  A set of Icons for all the currently running apps will appear at the bottom of your screen.  Touch any of these app icons for 2 seconds and a minus symbol will appear at the top left of all the running apps.  Tapping the minus symbol on any app's icon closes that app but does not delete it from your phone.

3.  The screen display on your device is a major drain on power.  Set the Auto-Lock on your device to the shortest time possible.  While this means you will probably need to unlock the device more often, it will significantly increase battery life.

4.  To accurately display your current location on the map, Fish PA - GPS Guide continually polls GPS satellites to identify your location.  This function adds demands on your battery.  You can disabled this function using "Display Current Location" setting.  Disabling the current location still allows you to view the offline USGS maps.  To find your location again, turn the "Display Current Location" on.  Your location will now appear.

5.  Apple and other 3rd party manufacturers sell reserve battery packs that you can carry into the field for additional battery life.  You may wish to consider purchasing a backup power source for use in the wilds.

6.  There are many internet articles and discussions covering additional tips and tricks to conserve your battery.




If you have additional questions or if we can help in some other way, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Contact us via email