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Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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2008/6/25 9:41
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With a rare day off and air temperatures near 60 degrees, I decided to make a run to the Laurel Highlands. First stop, Meadow Run. I was suprised to see extremely low water (especially considering the gusty storms that blew through the night before). I didn't even get out of the car.

I proceeded over Sugar Loaf Mountain into Confluence and fished the Yough near Ram Cat put in. There the water seemed HIGHER than expected but was still running around 900cfs. Water temped at 59 degrees. After an hour or so of chucking streamers, I only had one small bow to show for it and the water seemed to be rising.

So I moved to Laure Hill Creek lower project water near Humbert. Water was pefect, clear and near 50 degrees. At first I drifted hares ear nymph through likely holding ares without any luck. Then I saw movement on the surface. Avery faint swirl but definitely a fish. I quickly tied on an ant. No good. I contined to see swirls. Changed to a small beetle. Still nothing. The fish continued to rise. I saw no bugs in the air.

Then I saw it. A small white speck on tjhe water's surface floating toward me. As it got closer I could make out the wings. It was a tiny BWO. I quickly tied on a size 20 comp dun and immeditely started taking fish, on top, in 50 degree water, in November! All day I saw only a couple BWOs in the air, but many were on the water.

I ended up with eight fish. Four of which were browns which they didn't stock in the fall. So fish did indeed hold over in the LHC lower project this year, surpisingly.

A great day on the stream. Probably my last for this year due to work and family. Oh, and I had the stream to myself, no other fishermen.

Posted on: 2013/11/2 9:52

Edited by greenghost on 2013/11/2 10:08:43
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"I used to like fishing because I thought it had some larger significance. Now I like fishing because it's the one thing I can think of that probably doesn't." --John Gierach


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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2007/2/4 18:36
From Jefferson Hills, Pa
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I fished the lower project about 3 weeks ago. Got skunked but that wasn't the reason I went. It was last place that my father and I fished before his passing in 2005. I was surprised how much the lower end of the D.H. section had changed since I last fished there in November 2004 with my father. Paddytown Run sure must have had a heck of a blow-out to change the creek the way it did. Glad you had an enjoyable outing Greenghost, hope you have many more.

Posted on: 2013/11/2 10:54


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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Sometimes the places we fish are exceptional without regard to the number of fish we catch. Many waters have special meaning to me also even though they are not considered an exceptional fishery. The lower project water on Laurel Hill at one time had much better holding water. A number of storms scoured it in places. But glad to hear it still holds special meaning to you. Good fishing always hendeylathe.

Posted on: 2013/11/2 13:19
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"I used to like fishing because I thought it had some larger significance. Now I like fishing because it's the one thing I can think of that probably doesn't." --John Gierach


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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2013/9/6 11:40
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I did that same trip today besides meadow. Drive over sugar load and threw streamers in the yough, but quickly left cause it just was alittle too high/off color for my taste, then headed to laurel where it looked great, but I didn't see any fish in the section I was... I really need to move out of SWPA, not the greatest "wild trout" location

Posted on: 2013/11/3 23:16


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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Quote:

LetortAngler wrote:
I really need to move out of SWPA, not the greatest "wild trout" location


Being spoiled myself with streams in Central PA when I first took up the sport, I do agree. BUT I also can tell you that the wild trout picture in SW PA is MUCH better than it was just 30 years ago. And imho, it is improving. The trick is knowing exactly where to go, not only in terms of streams but also specific stretches on those waters.

Posted on: 2013/11/4 9:38
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"I used to like fishing because I thought it had some larger significance. Now I like fishing because it's the one thing I can think of that probably doesn't." --John Gierach


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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2006/11/2 8:50
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Quote:

greenghost wrote:
BUT I also can tell you that the wild trout picture in SW PA is MUCH better than it was just 30 years ago. And imho, it is improving. The trick is knowing exactly where to go, not only in terms of streams but also specific stretches on those waters.


What do you think caused the improvement?

Posted on: 2013/11/4 9:52


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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Quote:

troutbert wrote:
What do you think caused the improvement?



Well, the easy way out is to say there are a number of reasons… but I believe that to be true.

First and foremost, I think the control of acid mine drainage (AMD) has had a lot to do with it. Treatment of effluent has improved. Plus legislation on both federal and state levels have collared illegal discharge—which was unregulated until the 60s—starting with the Clean Water Act of 1972, Reclamation Act of 1977 and state restrictions on issuing mining permits in the 80s. The positive effects of these laws are now showing in the improved quality of the waterways. As far as remediation technology, there are a number of techniques used these days that just weren’t available before—chemical treatment, wetland creation, limestone channeling, and a bunch of others I can’t remember off the top of my head.

Another reason is involvement. Proactive organizations such as Trout Unlimited, local sportsmen clubs, conservation groups, etc. are more prevalent. Plus anglers (of all tackle types) seem to be wiser. We are actually more concerned about the ecology of watersheds and less about the put-and-take industrial output of stocked fish. We realize the importance of structure, riparian zones, flow and water quality to wild fish.

We still have a looooong way to go but when I look at green drakes on Meadow Run, hatches improving on the Yough below Confluence, and brookies in an unnamed tributary of Indian Creek where 20 years ago I could only find chubs, it is without a doubt much brighter today than yesterday.

Posted on: 2013/11/4 16:00
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"I used to like fishing because I thought it had some larger significance. Now I like fishing because it's the one thing I can think of that probably doesn't." --John Gierach


Re: Laurel Hill, Yough, Somerset County, 11/1/13

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2011/5/26 10:12
From Dauphin PA
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Floated the Yough yesterday (11-16-13) with DaveS. It was the first time I'd been there since 1988-1989. The release was mid 50's and 560 cfs. We put in by the 281 bridge and floated to Ohiopyle. Beautiful water, we did see a few bugs and a handful of sippers. The eagles were out and about. We managed a few fish to boot. Pretty nice day for mid November. I will definitely be back.

Posted on: 2013/11/17 17:43
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