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Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2006/11/20 10:08
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For PCray, mainly: Perhaps some of what you claim is true, but the fact remains that Spring Creek is a shadow of its former self. Since the article, the size of the trout has dramatically decreased. Creek regulars attribute this at least partially to the overhandling of the fish and they die earlier than they should. If you're alluding to the stream work at the McCoy's Ditch, you should regret the removal of the dam: behind the dam was arguably the best big trout habitat on the creek, and just b/c McCoy's Dam was a dam, it was removed. For some of us, the meoprene hatch is unbearable, and I go to SC only once every year of so for old times' sake, and I'm discouraged each time I go. Others have quit fishing there altogether, and one former regular (my brother-in-law) has quit fishing completely b/c of people pollution. In some ways SC has been loved to death (or near death as you might say). As you suggest, SC might not be able to survive the horrid expansion of the State College area. The Eastby article was a regrettable k/t piece.
For Matt, mainly: Yesterday afternoon was pretty hot. There was a car on the little creek when I drove by that was sold out on the other site. I regret to say that the guy's s/b did seem to attract at least one other angler to the creek for some warmwater trout fishing. So sad.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 10:01


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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Quote:
Perhaps some of what you claim is true, but the fact remains that Spring Creek is a shadow of its former self.


I don't doubt that. But you shouldn't compare it against what it once was. You should compare it to what it would be now had it not become a "destination stream." McCoy dam is only one example. I see it's removal as a short term negative, long-term gain. But thats such a minor part of what I'm talking about that its almost meaningless. I'm talking about all those little side springs, that by now would almost assuredly have been filled in by private interests. I'm talking about all those camps and houses below Paradise, which are valuable property because of the lure of the stream. If they weren't valuable as fishing property, the stream certainly wouldn't have been bought by the PFBC and would likely be posted, if not formed into a business district. I'm talking about the sewage effluent, which if it weren't a valuable fishery, would carry far lower standards. I'm talking about the parkland, like Spring Creek Park, which is a good deal better than houses right up to the banks. I'm talking about the future of the canyon section. Fishermen have a voice because they are an economic force. Otherwise, it'd have just been sold to PSU with no restrictions. I'm talking about the no-kill regulations sticking after consumption concerns diminished, as a large cold-water trout stream in a populated and growing area under kill regs is not a recipe for success. I'm talking about increased care taken during construction and road building. For instance, on skytop, the acid rock situation recieved the attention and funding to find a solution because it was in the Spring Creek drainage. Even SGL 176 protects much of the aquifer recharge area for Big Spring in Bellefonte. I'm not sure when the SGL was formed and for what purposes. But the conservancy is currently pushing to protect much of the barrens not covered by the SGL in order to protect that recharge area. Likewise, the same conservancy has strived to protect parts of other recharge areas of Spring Creek to protect them from development.

As for the smaller fish, no, I don't think its because of fishermen, at least not directly from fishermen killing them. It's because there are more fish than before. More fish almost always equals lesser size. There are more fish partially because the water quality has improved from those days. Also because of the no-kill regulations. Yeah, thats the indirect result of fishermen. But if I have a choice between good water quality, lots of fish, but more fishermen, vs. a more degraded fishery, dying quicker, but a few hogs and few fishermen, well, sign me up for the former.

I too get disgusted with the crowds. But I still fish the stream. There are areas where you can outwalk them. And the stream fishes well year round, fall and winter aren't so crowded. In the Spring there are enough other options in the area which fish well to keep me away from the sulfur crowds.

I for one am thankful of the contributions of anglers to this stream. Yes, the stream is still heading downhill, the factors stacked against it are huge. It wasn't loved to death. It was dying. Love didn't cure it, but it has kept it alive.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 10:25


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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rrt spring creek has been written about for a while. see new thread

Posted on: 2010/6/23 10:31


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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Well, PC, we are never going to agree. I think SC is much, much worse. Besides McCoy's, which I think will never recover to what it was, the little wildlife park in/below Bellefonte now sucks, too. Its pools and runs have filled in, and no number of deflectors, etc. will repair it. Also, there are no more fish than when I fished it frequently; today, they're mostly little guys; previously, if you didn't land at least one 17" or better, it was a bad outing. 17- & 18" trout on tricos were fun. Perhaps the many,many,many "friends" of Spring Creek do some good, but they haven't been able to really save it now, have they? It really is not worth driving an hour to fish anymore, and that's so sad.
I can still remember the last time my bro-in-law and I fished it together. 14 people passed us as we sat and awaited a sulphur hatch in a place where we seldom had seen other anglers. Some wore lovely blue and cranberry neoprenes (before breathables). It was also the first evening I ever saw people carrying bandanas instead of landing nets on their vest rings. I don't know if that meant anything, but it was pretty much the end of fishing there for either of us, esp him, who lives only 15 min. away. You can say all you want, but the neoprene hatch has been much more of a negative than a positive. Sorry to be so negative, but Spring Creek was once a special place.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 15:05


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2009/10/15 12:02
From Dispositionally, one mile south of Lake LeBoeuf
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It's true once you start seeing a lot of bandanas, the end is in sight.

The only stronger indicator I know of is when you start seeing a lot of bandanas AND these sort of hats:

http://www.boatersworld.com/webapp/wc ... gId=-1&productId=14460457

If both occur simultaneously, its all but over..

Posted on: 2010/6/23 16:55


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2009/10/15 13:45
From Eastern PA
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In all seriousness, what is the point of bandanas? Maybe if you are in some sick thick hatch and need to cover your mouth to keep from inhaling bugs (then again just don't be a mouth breather!)? Seriously, why do I see people with bandanas? "Fashion"?

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:01


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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I'm not saying it isn't worse than it used to be. And I'm not saying I like the crowds either.

You are comparing the wrong thing. You're comparing Spring Creek of today to Spring Creek of years past. Thats an incorrect comparison, the underlying condition of the stream isn't static.

You're talking about a stream in a metro area that has more than doubled its population in 30 years. Water use and sewage outflow have grown accordingly. It's a stream that used to be on the outskirts of town, but the town has grown around it. Not only has the population grown, but also the standard of living of that population. Strip malls and restaurants come with that. A major university, a hotel, strip malls, residential areas, and new highways have encroached upon its banks. The entire watershed is dependent on recharging the aquifer, and a large percentage of it has been covered with concrete! There is a major quarry near its formative spring!

By all rights, it should be dead. But its not dead. You have to get used to the fact that it was once an excellent rural stream, but its now an urban stream. K&T articles had nothing to do with the population growth of the area. Keeping it as it was wasn't one of the options. We could have just watched urbanization kill it, and it would have done just that. Or we could take the hit of less elbow room in order to make it a community treasure. In doing so, there are forces protecting the greenway, the aquifer recharge zones, public access, etc. They have voices in zoning and choosing the path of new roads. The stream itself adds land value to the adjacent areas, which keeps a buffer between it and the strip malls. The voices which defend the stream don't win all the battles, but they fight them, win some of them, and so far have been pretty successful at limiting the damage of urban sprawl. The more clout they have, the better the future prospects of the stream.

Look, I'm not totally against you in the big picture. I just think you're really barking up the wrong tree with Spring Creek. Spring Creek is the shining example, together with a couple of others, which shows how much "friends" can do for a stream. There are indeed opposite examples, that show how much they can hurt.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:07


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2006/10/18 20:22
From NC PA Mountains
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And if they are wearing shirts like this...



S10_FM7764_499_f

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:10
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Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2009/10/15 12:02
From Dispositionally, one mile south of Lake LeBoeuf
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Certainly, if in that color, Brad. If on the other hand, the shirt is in a dull green or tan and there is no bandana or hat (of the type above..) in evidence, decent, relatively uncrowded fishing may continue for a few more years. It sort of depends on how many guys are wearing well broken in Dickie's work shirts (the best fishing shirt, IMO) on the water to counteract the effects of the hats and bandanas.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:23


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2007/3/26 22:22
Posts: 1348
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Has SC gotten wider and more shallow or is it my imagination? The Paradise section seems like there's hardly any water coming down it even though the water flows show 'normal'. You have to use unweighted nymphs or fish in the spring when the flows are higher.

rrt, I used to fish the tricos down by the sewer plant below town. It was some nice water that held good fish.

PC, you want to talk about creeks that should be dead but seem to keep kicking somehow.... Cedar, Trindle and Silver Springs in the Camp Hill / Mechanicsburg area.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:28


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
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sight_nymph,

The paradise section has a largely altered/artificial channel. The slow pools near the upper parking area are neither natural nor typical for the stream.

As far as water levels, you don't judge by the "normal", you judge by the highs and lows. With urbanization, more water runs off, and less soaks in. Thus boom/bust flows like a freestoner, higher highs and lower lows, but the average stays the same. Water temperatures and alkalinity levels would also fluctuate more.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:43


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2006/9/9 16:08
From Erie Co.
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All,
It could be much, much worse +~+
The streams I fish in the Fall Winter and Spring morph the few fisherman you may see on the other streams of Pennsylvania. Just saying every day on a LE trib is like the opening day crowds one would see on any other stream in PA.
These crowds are only 2-3 months off. These fishermen have to fish some ware don't they?

Posted on: 2010/6/23 17:49


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

Joined:
2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
Posts: 13424
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Quote:
Just saying every day on a LE trib is like the opening day crowds one would see on any other stream in PA.


Don't be so modest. Those crowds are WORSE than opening day on most streams! I've been making trips there for 15+ years.

Yeah, the steelhead fishery is just an unbelievably fantastic fishery, and it attracts people. The people certainly detract from the fishery. Which leads to the Yogi Berra reference, "nobody goes there anymore, it's too crowded." A couple of points:

1. The fishery does rely on stocking. The popularity sustains that stocking. I'm sure locals would take less fish in exchange for less people. I'm not sure they'd take 0 fish in exchange for 0 people.

2. Because of the popularity, private interests are increasingly taking over. Because of the popularity, there are groups fighting the private interests. And the people (the PFBC) have the ultimate trump card. If a stream is totally privatized, they can just stop stocking it.

Thats an interesting place, it gives ridiculously extreme examples of both the benefits and negatives of popularity. There was a time, and even I remember it, where it could almost be considered under the radar, by Erie standards anyway. It was still popular, but you could go on a weekday and not see many guys. The fishery grew faster than the crowds, and many of us took advantage of the anomaly, and now pine for the "old days." But I knew then that it wasn't a sustainable situation, you can't keep a lid on a fishery like that. The status quo simply wasn't an option, just like Spring Creek.

Your choices are to keep the fishery as strong as possible and deal with the crowds. Or stop the stocking, and allow it to die a natural death. It's actually much the same situation that spring creek was. The main difference is popularity favors public access on spring creek, whereas on the tribs the access equation is less clear.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 18:10


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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2009/8/19 17:22
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streams change every day , some for the better some for the worst , unfortunately spring creek suffered pesticide contamination , alot of people that go there to fish think the hatches are really something and they are unless u compare them to other stream with abundant aquatic life , wild trout is what draws people to sc , fish for wilds with plenty of room for a back cast ...lol and easy access , fish the paradise in your dress shoes on lunch break , different strokes for different folks , i know it is hard for me to drive 1-1/2 when i have oil creek in my back yard , its hard to tell a wild trout until u get it to hand

Posted on: 2010/6/23 18:19


Re: Spot Burning...Gim me a break

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My thoughts on SC were that the building explosion in State College and the # of wells drilled in the surrounding area may have lowered the amount of groud water to feed the stream.

Not to be a smart A but you mean the giant concrete highway dividers at the upper lot aren't natural. I realize it's been altered but over the last 25 yrs, many of the sections of "Paradise" are almost unfishable (wide and shallow). I haven't been down past the bridge below Paradise in years but should probably check it out again.

Posted on: 2010/6/23 18:21



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