Showing posts with label Indiantown Run. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Indiantown Run. Show all posts

September 19, 2011

Jail Break!

Hurricane Irene did a lot of damage a few weeks ago.  High winds, ridiculous amounts of rain, caused well documented catastrophes all over the East Coast.  Even after Irene, remnants from Tropical Storm Lee came through and made what was already wet even wetter, which led to high water all over the place, flooding, and even more damage.  But you all know this already, right?

What is left of a water gauge
Downed trees everywhere
A pair, totally uprooted

Well...what if I told you that it also caused a Pennsylvania trout nursery to overflow, allowing the majority of its late summer fingerlings to escape from their pens and make a run for it in the stream located beside?  An unannounced & unintended late summer stocking thanks to Irene & Lee?...well two of my friends (Spurky and Swattie) gave me the "hint-hint" about this late last week, so this past Saturday I hopped into the car and made the couple hour drive to help play Sheriff...or at least Deputy.  I'm typically not a stocked trout chaser, (you know me and Valley's native browns), but someone had to make sure the ex-prisoners were behaving themselves...

Who needs a gun and handcuffs...don't hate...this isn't a fly fishing only blog...

So yeah, we fished...

Spurky working beneath a bridge
First fish of the day
Swattie brought the fly rod

And fished...

Spurky fishing some newly created cover
Swattie working a run close by

And the closer we got to the top of the hill...the more ridiculous it got.  Bring your spinner through a pool, 7 or 8 fish swarmed to follow.  It was almost like fishing for bluegill or sunfish.  Every cast...slam...another feisty little 6 to 7 inch rainbow or brookie on the hook.  How many did we catch?  A lot.  That's all I'll say, I'm not a "numbers" guy.

There were two memorable fish of the lot that I will specifically mention.  The first was a 12"+ rainbow that surprised me.  After catching all the small guys all day, this one made the loose drag on the spinning reel sing.  Wasn't expecting to find this one.  Must have been a holdover from the Spring stocking.

The second was a small native brown.  It was the only brown I caught all day, plucked from beside some smaller rocks within a swift and narrow current.  It clearly wasn't from the nursery, which was nice.  I just wonder how he and his fellow natives will fare this Fall & Winter with the influx of all of these hungry jailbirds during the brown's prime spawning season?  So back he went, hopefully to get a little bit bigger.

We ended the day with Swattie catching a pretty brookie at the top of the hill.  The bright sun that was hidden most of the morning brought out the distinctive markings on this fish.

July 8, 2011

Trout Fishing Lebanon County, PA With Spurky

I played hooky from work yesterday to go fishing with Spurky.  It had been a little over a year since we last fished, and in light of recent events I just needed a day to clear my thoughts.

Spurky lives about an hour and a half West from me, near Hershey, PA.  He offered to be a "guide," and show me around some of the local creeks & streams in his area.  Our game plan was to hit the Quittapahilla Creek (The Quittie) first, shoot over to Indiantown Run (IR), and finish up at Trout Run. (I think I got those names right).

Let me say in advance, Spurky makes for a great guide, exercising great patience while I repeatedly & inaccurately casted toward endless treefish, stickfish, and rockfish throughout the morning. He certainly earned his guide card yesterday.
Quittie Creek PA

We started the morning hitting a 3 sections of the Quittie. It was a warm morning, with temperatures in the high 80s (it would top out in the low 90s later in the afternoon). Water levels seemed low and mostly clear, but nice and cool. We both had spinning gear in tow, and I was tossing a Mepps Agila (it had worked well for me last year) and Spurky was working a BPS Spoon of some design.
Spurky Trout Fishing

Fishing was hit or miss on the Quittie, with several stretches giving us a the skunk, but one section that ran behind a cow pasture was extremely productive. In retrospect, it ended up being the most action we'd see on the day, but what we lacked in quantity, we made up for in quality, as evidenced by these pretty 'bows.
Quittie Creek PA Rainbow Trout
 Quittie Creek PA Rainbow Trout
 Quittie Creek PA Rainbow Trout
 Quittie Creek PA Rainbow Trout

Just as we were going to hit the last hole, it happened.  It?  Yeah, it.  Spurky got into a pig.  I was fishing a riffle when I noticed Spurky with a nice bend in his rod...he motioned for me to come over quickly, not just to see the fish he was fighting, but he needed a net man.  And let me tell you, this fish was a bruiser.  I scampered down the bank into the water and tried to net the fish - but it was too big for my 20" net!  We didn't have a tape measure, but this fish ran at least a thick 24"...the largest Spurky claims to have pulled from the Quittie to date!
Quittie Creek PA Moby Dick 24 Inch Rainbow Trout

On the way out, I decided I wanted to fish out that hole, just to see if that whale had any younger brothers or sisters.  Wouldn't you know on my last cast, a sibling obliged with a swift rising strike from the depths.
Quittie Creek PA Rainbow Trout

After that, we moved on to Indiantown, but Spurky wasn't impressed with the water levels.  He let me fish two quick holes near the road - I caught a small creek chub and a tiny native trout (still with its parr marks) - but I didn't really think to take any pics.  Since the water was low we hopped back in Spurky's Hybrid truck (fancy right?) and he entertained me with the story of the Moonshine Church & the Blue-Eyed Six during the drive over to Trout Run.  The're ghosts up in thar hills!

Our time on Trout Run didn't end up yielding much either, so I won't write too much about it.  We only spent 20 or 30 minutes fishing it, and most of it was the hike/wade in.  This is small, tight quarters fishing.  Tenkara rods need not apply.  Net result...Spurky got a smallie, I got a rock bass.  Interesting harvest for a place called "Trout" Run, right?
Spurky on Trout Run PA

After that we called it a day.  I had a bit of a drive home in front of me, and I think we were both a little drenched under our hippers (if you know what I mean) from the heat.

I can't thank Spurky enough for dragging me around yesterday.  Despite the tough fishing, I couldn't have had a better time.  I mean it was mostly new (to me) water, we ended up with some memorable fish at the end of our lines, it was a day away from the office (always a plus), and truthfully, it was simply just the kind of medicine this angler needed this week.