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Podcast highlights wealth of fishing in area

Many anglers spend their lives searching for their angling paradise, when in fact it might be a whole lot closer than they think.

Anglers dream big, hoping to save enough money to someday pay for a trip to an exotic locale filled with big fish. In the meantime, however, we have a fair share of fun and productive waters to enjoy here in northeast Ohio and western Pennsylvania.

That’s the thinking behind a new podcast produced by Austintown outdoorsmen Chris DePaola and Don Clowes. They call it “120 Outdoors” and it’s beginning to gain an audience.

“Our podcast is based on our belief in the great fishing and hunting here close to home,” DePaola said. “We have so many great opportunities within two hours drive of the Youngstown-Warren area, and we want to get people excited about them.”

It’s not difficult to tick off a list of good fishing spots less than 120 minutes from our driveways. DePaola and Clowes have experienced all of them — from the walleyes, crappies and bass of local reservoirs, to the big game muskie waters, to Lake Erie and its world-class walleye and steelhead fishing.

They have already produced several shows that feature local outdoors action. Each podcast includes discussions with experts in fishing and hunting.

The 120 Outdoors podcast can be accessed via Spotify, Google Play, Breaker, Overcast, Anchor, Pocket Cast and RadioPublic. The next podcast will be available next weekend.

DePaola says that judging from audience reaction, the 120 Outdoors concept is resonating.

“Our listens and subscribers are increasing,” he said. “People are saying they appreciate our highlighting the opportunities we have here and how they can get involved with them.”

Each podcast showcases the fishing and hunting within two hours of our homes. In addition to the various locations they highlight, DePaola and Clowes share information about the tools that listeners can access to increase their enjoyment.

The hosts aren’t just local cheerleaders. They have “been there, done that” in terms of outdoor adventures all over North America.

“The steelhead fishing, for example, is so good that I’ve met anglers on our Ohio streams that come from as far away as Colorado and Quebec and Ontario in Canada,” DePaola said.

“I have been fortunate to have had many chances to fish the legendary muskie waters in Canada, as well as Lake St. Clair, the St. Lawrence and others, and I can tell you our very own West Branch, Milton and Pymatuning compare very favorably.”

DePaola also touts the walleye fishing locally, with Pymatuning one of his favorites.

“I’ve been wading Pymatuning with a spinning rod and a jig-and-minnow setup and doing very well in the hour or so just before dark,” he said.

“Don and I always say how good we have it here in the Youngstown-Warren area. It was right here where we honed our skills and it’s right here within two hours of home where we still find fantastic fishing and hunting,” DePaola said.

Plus our local fishing gives us the perfect way to get away from the crowds and practice social distancing. That’s a theme we can be sure 120 Outdoors will be promoting as summer approaches.

Jack Wollitz is a writer and angler who loves fishing the waters of Northeast Ohio and Western Pennsylvania. He also appreciates emails from readers. Send a note to Jack at jackbbaass@gmail.com.

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