Fishing has always been a passion, and I take full advantage of what North Central PA has to offer. I am on the water an awful lot and usually head out after dinner. I haven’t had the chance of late. Work and daylight savings always seem to get in the way, but if there’s a
Fishing has always been a passion, and I take full advantage of what North Central PA has to offer. I am on the water an awful lot and usually head out after dinner. I haven’t had the chance of late. Work and daylight savings always seem to get in the way, but if there’s a free moment I am usually in the middle of Lycoming Creek.
Some of my favorite holes are just a short drive or walk from the homestead. We live in the 17728 and Lycoming runs through it. I rarely stay in the same spot and cross the creek to gain better access. I am always on the move hence the term — extreme wading. Some like to jog or head to the gym, but I prefer to go for a three-mile wade to keep trim.
I am very loyal to Lycoming. It is where I do 90% of my fishing. There is no need to travel when you routinely catch fish in the backyard. I have successfully navigated the entire creek from its headwaters above Ralston to the Susquehanna. Bodines to Camp Susque. The old airport and Powys. Haleeka to the 973 green bridge. Hepburnville and the Heshbon. High Street to Memorial. I’ve fished them all. OK, some spots are better than others and believe it or not I have my most luck within the city limits.
Lycoming Creek is a very unique and healthy waterway. I lost count, but I have been very fortunate to catch all types of species. Rainbow, Brook, Brown, and even a Tiger. Most are stocked, but you would be surprised by the number of wild trout. I’ve landed a few Walleye and a small Muskie. Those encounters were totally unexpected, and I consider myself quite lucky. Smallmouth don’t stand a chance. If I am not extreme wading, I am in my kayak or canoe. It’s what I do. So I guess you could say that I am an avid fisherman. I tell stories too.
I snuck out for a few casts on one particular evening. The weather was nice, and the leaves were turning. I had the entire stretch of water all to myself, and I only fished for an hour. Fall is my favorite time of year to do some extreme wading. Man, it is so beautiful. I landed a few trout early but when I got to my secret spot my jaw dropped. I noticed something sticking out like a sore thumb just off of the bank. I didn’t realize what it was at first, and it appeared to be log engulfed by dozens of yellow leaves, but then it moved.
I quietly made my way into the water for a better position. I casted upstream and began my retrieve. The mysterious critter then turned his massive head. She was now on a direct line with my lure and seemed to have some interest. I was so nervous. Bang. I felt a major tug, and I prepared for battle. The large fish was now in the current and taking some line. I didn’t want to lose her, and I began to follow. It sort of reminded me of that scene from A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT. I frantically worked my drag and reeled in when I saw an opportunity. The fight continued for at least ten minutes. She finally tired and I only wanted to borrow this fish for a few pictures. SUCCESS. Hopefully, my lovely editor will include one above.
There seems to be some confusion on what these peculiar looking fish are called. A GOLDEN RAINBOW (Oncorhynchus mykiss) is a color variation of a rainbow trout. GOLDEN TROUT(Oncorhynchus aguabonita) are a distinct species native to specific regions of California, Wyoming, and Montana. They look nothing like these orange and yellow beasts. Initially, folks called them PALOMINOS but due to their more brilliant and distinct coloration — but it is proper to refer to them as GOLDEN RAINBOW TROUT.
I have caught a few of these GOLDEN RAINBOWS in my day, but this was my first so late in the season. Many of these giants never make it past the summer months. Ospreys and eagles can spot these things a mile away. Other predators take advantage too. They have been here in Pennsylvania for almost 50 years, and anglers aggressively searched waters in hopes of catching one. Like I said before. They stick out like a sore thumb.
Now I have caught thousands of fish on Lycoming Creek over the past several years — but this GOLDEN RAINBOW definitely ranks in the top three. Tight lines. Cheers.
- January 16, 2019