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Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09

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2006/12/3 21:01
From Mechanicsburg, Pa
Posts: 526
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While I am encouraged about Big Spring's recovery, I wouldn't go as far as classifying it as a world class brook trout fishery. A lot of progress will need to be accomplished in areas below the current regulated water before I would give it this distinction. Many are complaining about the depth of the creek, but the very nature of most spring creeks are that they are shallow. If there is poaching, I think we have an obligation to confront the offenders or at least notify the proper authorities if such behavior is witnessed. That seems to be the only way that it will be stopped; Does no good whining about it here. I am excited as I too have caught some nice rainbows even with my limited amateur flycasting abilities. My apologies to Gene Macri who feels I shouldn't be fishing there! LOL

Posted on: 2009/9/17 19:49


Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09

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2006/9/9 17:18
From lancaster county
Posts: 6496
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Quote:
While I am encouraged about Big Spring's recovery, I wouldn't go as far as classifying it as a world class brook trout fishery.


Are you kidding me?

http://www.aquaticinstitute.com/ditch2.html
http://www.aquaticinstitute.com/thomas%20dam.html
http://www.aquaticinstitute.com/brooktroutbiomass%2001.swf
http://www.aquaticinstitute.com/carrying1.html

Well quote from the links above.

80 lbs per acre of a mix of wild rainbows and brook trout around the Thomasville Dam site.

300 lbs per acre of brook trout in a 150 meter 18 foot across stretch of stream.No fishery in the US has this amount of brook trout.
55 KG/HA - in the upper ditch area.

Big Spring's Carrying Capacity and Poundage Of Brook Trout is the highest in the Nation.

Since everyone likes to hail Western Streams we will use the "top" to compare.

Gold Metal Colorado Trout Water
Colorado Gold Metal Wild Trout water is:

Gold Medal Water: A lake or stream that supports a trout standing stock of at least 60 pounds per acre, and contains an average of at least 12 quality trout per acre.

60 pounds eh? We got 300-400 in the ditch.
we got 80 lbs of wild rainbows per acre at the Thomasville Dam site.

Big Spring isnt a World Class Fishery?

Posted on: 2009/9/17 20:37
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Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09
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Joined:
2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
Posts: 9356
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While I'll (a bit sheepishly) admit to using the words "world class" a bit too easily on occasion - I don't think it was off the mark in this case. I do believe BSC deserves that description, or is very close to it, whatever the standard. I wouldn't have said this three or even a couple years ago. The changes in brook trout population and their recovery has taken off beyond my most optimistic predictions from the time they closed the hatchery (2001). Scoll up this thread and take a good look at 3wt7X's avatar. That is a wild (no fin clips) brook trout of 14 inches in length caught this week in BSC. I know because I netted it and took the photo. There are many more like it. While I could certainly be wrong, I'm predicting the recent electroshocking survey of BSC will show substantial growth in the brook trout biomass both in terms of numbers and size. As for possible stream work, I too was of the view a few years ago that the creek needed a lot of work and much greater depth in order to reach it's potential and while I'm still leaning that way for parts of the stream, I'm starting to sing a different tune this year. There has been so much improvement recently that I'm now more inclined to adopt a wait and see approach and leave it alone for awhile. Whatever the case, BSC is really one of the great trout stream stories in PA recently.

Posted on: 2009/9/17 22:09


Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09

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2007/6/24 16:25
Posts: 167
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I've never done well (at all) on BSC. I'm enamored by the stream and I'll keep working at it, though the 2 hour plus drive from home makes it a bit difficult. It just seems like the fish are scattered and I've not done a good job of finding them. I can never seem to find fish working.

For you Big Spring guys, do you think it's possible that the insect life/hatches could rebound much the same way they did on Spring Creek and the Little J., or will fishing BSC forever be a subsurface affair?

Posted on: 2009/9/19 9:15


Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09
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2006/9/9 17:32
From Gettysburg
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VTPA,
I'm not sure about future insect activity. My personal memory of BSC goes back about 25 years or so but I never knew the stream before the advent of the fish hatchery in the early 70s. Old timers I know around here don't tell a lot of stories about hatches on BSC from the good ole days. In my experience, it has always been a sub surface game on BSC. I did have a good day in the ditch earlier this year when some little brown stones were coming off and that section can usually be counted on to reveal at least a couple fish, usually small, sipping midges off the top - but for hard core dry fly guys, I don't recommend a long trip to fish BSC. Really, the Cumberland Valley traditionally just doesn't see the kind of hatch activity one can expect up at Penns, Little J et al. Letort is a bit better for hatches than BSC and Falling Springs is a bit better than Letort but I don't consider any of 'em prime hatch waters, although terrestrials can produce good dry fly fishing. The rock rolling I have done on BSC this year does reveal some caddis and mayfly nymphs but they are miniscule in numbers compared to crustaceans. Sow bugs (cress bugs) are by far the most numerous, outnumbering scuds about 10 to 1 in the middle FFO area. Again, things may change as water quality continues to evolve but I doubt BSC will ever be a destination for dry fly enthusiasts.

Posted on: 2009/9/19 9:37


Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09

Joined:
2009/7/25 22:17
Posts: 54
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Big Spring has big fish.

I saw over 5-6 20 inch rainbows when I last visited the area.

All in different sections. 1 large pool, and once when I spooked one hiding.

Posted on: 2009/9/19 11:39


Re: Big Spring Creek, Cumberland County, 9-14-09

Joined:
2006/10/26 11:34
From Gunpowder River, MD
Posts: 1704
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Quote:

Fishidiot wrote:
VTPA,
I'm not sure about future insect activity. My personal memory of BSC goes back about 25 years or so but I never knew the stream before the advent of the fish hatchery in the early 70s. Old timers I know around here don't tell a lot of stories about hatches on BSC from the good ole days. In my experience, it has always been a sub surface game on BSC. I did have a good day in the ditch earlier this year when some little brown stones were coming off and that section can usually be counted on to reveal at least a couple fish, usually small, sipping midges off the top - but for hard core dry fly guys, I don't recommend a long trip to fish BSC. Really, the Cumberland Valley traditionally just doesn't see the kind of hatch activity one can expect up at Penns, Little J et al. Letort is a bit better for hatches than BSC and Falling Springs is a bit better than Letort but I don't consider any of 'em prime hatch waters, although terrestrials can produce good dry fly fishing. The rock rolling I have done on BSC this year does reveal some caddis and mayfly nymphs but they are miniscule in numbers compared to crustaceans. Sow bugs (cress bugs) are by far the most numerous, outnumbering scuds about 10 to 1 in the middle FFO area. Again, things may change as water quality continues to evolve but I doubt BSC will ever be a destination for dry fly enthusiasts.


fishidiot,

Don't take our word on it..

Theodore Gordon wrote in the April 6, 1907 issue of Forest and Stream:

" I wish that it was possible to revisit all our old haunts during the best portion of the season. There are many streams in Pennsylvania which I have not fished for many years. Some of these are ideal from the dry fly fishers point of view, particularly the limestone streams which are formed by great springs which gush from the rocks in large volume...In June I have seen the water covered with the dimples made by rising trout as far as my view extended. This was in the evening after the sun was off the water, in Big Spring, a large Spring which flows through Newville, Pennsylvania"

Posted on: 2009/9/24 8:53



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