Fishing Creek in Pennsylvania is sometimes referred to as Big Fishing Creek to differentiate it from other streams called Fishing Creek. Fishing Creek originates more than 8 miles east of Tylersville, Pennsylvania. From there it flows in a Southward direction past Nittany, then curves Northward near Lamar and continues to a junction with Bald Eagle Creek near Mill Hall. The unique thing about Fishing Creek is that in the summer it disappears underground and resurfaces above Mackeyville where it is reborn as a cooler, cleaner, and richer stream. Would it not be nice if all streams could do that act? The five mile portion of Fishing Creek known as the "Narrows" is the most popular section and it may look like a freestone stream with riffles, runs and pools however; it is definitely a spring creek as there are also numerous big springs near Tylersville that continue to cool the stream as it heads toward Bald Eagle Creek.
Several sections of Fishing Creek are termed Class A Wild Trout Stream by the State of Pennsylvania which means that it will support a population of wild (natural reproduction) trout of sufficient size and abundance to support a long-term and rewarding sport fishery. The Commission does not stock these streams. Other portions are designated Trophy Trout Projects where some stocking may take place.
There are two major limestone tributary streams that feed into Fishing Creek and they are helpful in contributing to the high Ph level. This high Ph and the cooler and faster waters of the tributary streams are what make the stream so fertile providing an excellent environment for prolific hatches. You can find all major caddis, mayfly and stonefly hatches on Fishing Creek. Doesn’t this all make it sound like a paradise for fly fishermen?
Fly Fishing on the Fishing Creek:
The water above Tylersville is thin and small and the native wild brook trout are small as well. However, fishing for them with dry flies will provide some good action. Also, above Tylersville there are some big browns that require both skill and cunning to catch them. Downstream from the hatchery at Tylersville, the creek is larger and the best fishing is available in the Narrows section of the creek. This section has deep shaded pools inhabited with 12 to 14 inch browns as well as some smaller brook trout. Some of this land is posted but much of it is not posted and this area sees the most pressure because of the good fishing and because of the easy access from State Route 2002 (Fishing Creek Road) which runs along side the creek. The fishing pressure peaks during June when the green drake hatch is in progress.
The stretch running southeast of State Route 2004 enjoys considerable less pressure and contains good populations of trout. From Mackeysville to Mill Hall will also provide some nice action.
The spring hatches provide the most popular time for fishing the creek. From the first of March through the middle of April you will find some Little Brown or Early Stoneflies hatching. The stream has several Blue-winged Olive species including large numbers of the larger Eastern BWOs that start hatching around the last week of March and continue through to the middle of June. Starting in April, hatches of the Blue Quills and the Quill Gordons will occur in the fast water sections of Fishing Creek. Another great hatch that occurs on Fishing Creek is the Hendrickson which starts around the middle of April and continues for two or three weeks.
Sulphurs, Light Cahills and Eastern Pale Evening mayflies hatch from about the middle of May through the middle of June. From the middle of May through the month of September, you will find hatches of Slate Drakes. Green Drake hatches will start in the middle of June as well. Cinnamon Caddis are plentiful from the first of June through September as are the Green Caddis. The stream is full of their larvae, known as green rock worms.
Terrestrial insects become important during the summer. Imitations of grass hoppers, crickets, ants and beetles are effective from about the middle of June through the month of September.
The fall of the year is viewed by many as the best time to fish the Fishing Creek as it is a pleasant time flooded with fall color. A second wave of BWOs and Blue Quills will start in August and continue through to October. Great Autumn Brown Caddisflies hatch during September and October. Also continue with the terrestrial patterns during this time.
In the winter months, the BWO’s, Little Black Stoneflies, and Midges in the white and gray patterns will be effective on the larger waters. Scuds, Sowbugs, Crayfish. Minnows and Sculpins are plentiful in Fishing Creek providing ample opportunity for streamer imitations to lure the larger browns. Fish these flies in low light situations such as early and late in the day and during heavy clouded conditions
Our line of "Perfect Flies
" including realistic imitations of all the mayflies, caddisflies and stoneflies have been proven to work on Fishing Creek. If you haven't done so already, please give them a try. We are confident you will be back for more.