Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Fly Fishing Central Pennsylvania's White Deer Creek in Late April

This past weekend I fished a number of central Pennsylvania trout streams; indeed, I was lucky enough to fish Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. I will thus recount these three days in three separate posts.

On Friday Jackie and I drove to White Deer Creek, a freestone stream that meanders through Bald Eagle State Forest en route to its confluence with the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. After debating where to stop, we headed for the short fly-fishing only stretch of water that exists on White Deer. We enjoyed ourselves despite the relatively slow trout activity: I threw nymphs into the creek's fast runs and Jackie read in the warm sun. Along the bank we spotted some trailing arbutus, a creeping wildflower that owns a magnificent scent (image #3). In the end, though, I only caught one fish: a stocked brook trout that took a bead-head green weenie (image #2).

I find White Deer Creek to be somewhat of an insufferable place: the river is beautiful, but it is too heavily fished, relies too much on a stocking regimen, and lacks the prolific hatches of its neighboring limestone creeks. In a way, White Deer reminds me of my home waters in the Pocono Mountains. These are streams that could be amazing, but suffer from many of the aforementioned problems. But a fish is a fish, the day was beautiful, and we took some lovely pictures.

Check back soon for further updates!

Overall Total: 10

River Breakdown:

Spring Creek - 5 (4 Wild Rainbow, 1 Wild Brown)
Marshalls Creek - 4 (4 Wild Brook)
Fishing Creek - 1 (1 Wild Brown)
White Deer Creek - 1 (1 Stocked Brook)

Species Breakdown:

Brook Trout - 5
Wild - 4
Stocked - 1

Rainbow Trout - 4
Stocked - 0
Wild - 4

Brown Trout - 2
Stocked - 0
Wild - 2

Wild Trout - 10
Stocked Trout - 1

Trout 15+ Inches: 0

Fly Breakdown:
Olive wooly bugger, size 14 - 4 (4 Wild Brook)
Green Weenie, size 14 - 2 (2 Wild Rainbow)
Bead-head Green Weenie, size 14 - 1 (1 Stocked Brook)
Blue Quill, size 16 - 1 (1 Wild Brown)
Blue Winged Olive, size 18 - 1 (1 Wild Rainbow)
Golden Stonefly, size 8 - 1 (1 Wild Brown)
Scud, size 16 - 1 (1 Wild Rainbow)

Angling Breakdown:

Fly Fishing Rod - 11 (4 Wild Brook, 4 Wild Rainbow, 2 Wild Brown, 1 Stocked Brook)
Spinning Rod - 0

State Breakdown:
Pennsylvania - 11
New Jersey - 0
New York - 0

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