Winter Brook Trout Fishing in Pennsylvania’s Blue Mountains

Everyone was talking about winter storm Harper late last week. The storm was moving across the Midwest on Friday and was expected to make landfall in Pennsylvania on Saturday afternoon. The weather report was telling me I was going to have a four or five hour window on Saturday to fly fish. The air temperatures were supposed to hold steady in the mid-30s into Saturday morning and this was actually an increase from earlier in the week when overnight temps were dipping into the low 20s. My experience is that any gradual and sustained increase in temperatures in the colder months can mean active brook trout.

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Nescopeck Tributary & The Wild Brook Trout of State Game Lands 187

The wet weather continued in Pennsylvania last week. A storm system dumped rain across the state overnight Thursday into Friday afternoon. Any big trout waters that were on their way to normal December flows once again pushed out of their banks. I’m thankful that Pennsylvania has so many spring-fed streams in its mountains. The blue ribbons that fill the map of the keystone state wilderness make me feel alive.

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Losing Daylight & The PA Wilderness Trout Stream

In Union County, Pennsylvania just west of the town of Mifflinburg, there is a thirteen-mile Class A Wild Brook Trout Stream known as North Branch Buffalo Creek. The Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission designates North Branch Buffalo Creek as a Wilderness Trout Stream. This means that humans have not encroached upon the stream and it provides the fisherman a true wilderness experience. The stream is referred to as providing Exceptional Value. This spring fed creek is a tributary to Centre County’s Buffalo Creek.

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Quality Not Quantity on Harveys Creek

This was the first week this year that it felt like summer. Last weekend I was on my annual fly fishing trip to Pine Creek with college friends and the air temperatures hit 95 degrees on Sunday afternoon. That heat continued throughout the first few days of this week and the water temperatures in Pennsylvania continue to steadily rise. It wont’ be long before I’ll start venturing out to warm water locations with my 9’-7wt looking for smallmouth bass on streamers. However, today I continued my quest for trout on Keystone Select stream. I headed north to fish Harveys Creek.

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