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Safe Wading Levels

2009/11/16 20:57
Posts: 0
Spring Break is coming up in a week and a half, and my soul needs to get away from the pavement of Philly and back to nature. I was hoping to head to the central part of the state. I was just wondering what you would consider safe wading levels for Penns and the Little J. I'm 26 and in pretty good shape, so I can handle some fast flows.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Posted on: 2013/2/26 15:07

Re: Safe Wading Levels

2009/4/6 14:26
From Limerick, Pa
Posts: 0
IMO, regardless of water flow on the J, bring and use a wading staff. Those underwater boulders on certain sections can turn ankles quickly and you will be bottoms up before you know it. For that fact, I don't think there is a 'safe' wading level w/o a staff. Again, just my opinion.

Posted on: 2013/2/26 15:48
Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
Winston Churchill

Re: Safe Wading Levels

2006/9/9 11:22
From New Castle, PA
Posts: 19
Check this link for flow/wading info in the LJR:

As of this post, the flows are perfect at just over 200 cfs. Very nice for this time of year. It is often 300+ in the winter.

Not nearly as familiar with Penns, but it is tougher to wade overall IMO. I've fished it when it was 500+ and caught fish but I'm not sure I'd say it was fun. The 200-400cfs range is much better fishing. 20cfs can actually seem kinda low on Pnns.

A staff is prob a good idea for either although i've never used one onestream. Both streams may be a culture shock depending on what you are used to wading.


Posted on: 2013/2/26 19:09

Re: Safe Wading Levels

2006/10/2 10:08
From Westmoreland County (near fairgrounds)
Posts: 93
Little J is wadable under 300 CFS. Penns maybe 350.

Posted on: 2013/2/26 23:43
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Only one constant in the universe, all men are equal in the eyes of the fish.
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Re: Safe Wading Levels

2009/5/29 6:40
From harlansburg
Posts: 39
yes on a wading staff on penns, pretty much the only stream I ever use one on. Super slippery rocks, deep hidden holes, and the fact that the best fishing occurs right at dusk and you usually have to wade out in the dark, a staff really helps you feel your way back to shore.
studded shoes are another big help.
those levels mentioned above are good guidelines, but I use an easier gauge, if it's raging and looks nasty, I'm not gonna fish it unless the drakes are coming off!

Posted on: 2013/2/27 6:48

Re: Safe Wading Levels

2011/8/21 15:39
From Huntingdon
Posts: 2
I do not try to cross the J past 375 cfs.

Posted on: 2013/2/27 22:28

Re: Safe Wading Levels

2009/11/16 20:57
Posts: 0
Thank you all for the helpful advice. I actually went to PSU, but didn't get into fly fishing until taking Prof. Belden's class as a senior. Spent plenty of time on Spring and some farmer's ponds, even hit up Fishing Creek once, but for some reason or another never made it to Penns or the Little J.

I'm originally from outside York and have hit most of the SCPA limestoners, as well as the Little Lehigh and now Valley. Looking to expand my hit list, but grad school is not allowing much time.

Thanks again for all the help; I'll make sure to take a staff.

Posted on: 2013/2/28 0:06

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