Two Percent — Penns Creek Needs Your Voice

by | Aug 16, 2018 | 4 comments

Just two percent of Pennsylvania’s 83,000 river miles receive the state’s Class A Wild Trout designation. Two percent. Wild trout are rare. They are rare enough to be special, to be highly valued and protected. In short, we must be careful with the resource.

The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission recently shock surveyed the lower reaches of Penns Creek, well below the special regs area. To the surprise of none who fish Penns regularly, the commission found a Class A wild trout population. So approximately 4 miles of Class A wild trout water has now been added to that list of two percent. Excellent!

Importantly, the Class A designation defines these areas as “Exceptional Value,” and they are afforded the highest protection by the EPA. The commission is now shifting its trout stocking from this section of Penns Creek to a longer section downstream, letting wild trout be wild without stocking over top of them. More good stuff.

If we’re objective about the meaning of “Exceptional Value,” if we stand back and decide what’s best for the stream, separating ourselves from tradition and ingrained culture, it’s clear that Catch and Release regulations are the next step for this section of Penns Creek.

Remember, two percent. Let’s protect what we have.

Now, the PFBC is accepting public comment on the proposed Catch and Release regulations for this area of Penns Creek. The comment period ends on September 1st, 2018. The motion will be voted on in October.

I strongly urge you to comment to the PFBC about this section. Ask them for the C&R All Tackle regulations.

Tell Them

This form will take you five minutes to fill out, and your opinion will be considered. For public comment on such things, the commission doesn’t get thousands of responses. They get hundreds. Usually much less. So your five minutes will have an effect. Please leave a comment on this page. (The title of the rule is already filled out for you.)

For more information regarding these changes to Penns Creek, read the article by my friend, Rob Shane, on the national Trout Unlimited page, titled, Voices from the River: Penns Creek gets even better.

And for more specific information regarding this proposal, for the included miles and designations, read the minutes and agendas from the PFBC July meeting. The section in question is addressed on page 38. (**Update** PFBC removed the link in 2018)

Here are a few excerpts from the commentary in that agenda:

. . . Penns Creek is one of the most popular wild trout streams in Pennsylvania and the eastern United States. The scenery and ability to catch large, wild trout in a wilderness-type setting makes it unique and motivates anglers to travel long distances to fish this stream.

. . . Only about 2% of Pennsylvania streams qualify for Class A designation and it is truly something special, especially for a stream the size of Penns Creek, to support a high quality wild trout fishery.

. . . Penns Creek, Section 05, is managed to protect, conserve, and enhance the high-quality wild Brown Trout fishery while meeting landowner and angler preferences to the greatest extent possible. Based on the desires of riparian landowners and public meeting attendees, coupled with updated biological data, application of Catch-and-Release Artificial Lures Only angling regulations to this stream section is appropriate.

Two percent. Remember that.

And please share this with someone else who loves Penns Creek.

 

Enjoy the day.
Domenick Swentosky
T R O U T B I T T E N
domenick@troutbitten.com

 

Share This Article . . .

Since 2014 and 600 articles deep
Troutbitten is a free resource for all anglers
Your support is greatly appreciated

– Explore These Post Tags –

Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

More from this Category

Satisfaction and Success

Satisfaction and Success

For most of us, feeling satisfied with a fishing trip comes from a bit of success. And we measure that success in big trout landed or high numbers to the net. But are those stats really our best gauge? Probably not. Instead, I suggest finding satisfaction in fishing well, knowing that you improved your technique and you took steps toward being a better angler. Then, on the best days, in the process of refining your skills, trout will come to hand frequently. That’s fishing hard . . .

The Inefficiency of Inexperience

The Inefficiency of Inexperience

The way you move on the water, the way you carry gear and how you adapt, has a big impact on your experience out there. Yes, we all enjoy the scenery and solitude. We love the sites and sounds of a river. But when that novelty dulls a bit, the process of solving problems and seeing the results of our solutions is what keeps us in the game for a lifetime . . .

Play It As It Lies

Play It As It Lies

The shifts and evolutions that a river succumbs to is captivating to watch. It’s a slow motion reel in your mind, spanning twenty years of fishing around the same small island. Until one day, after the flood waters recede, you walk down the trail to find the whole island gone.

I want an experience as close to what nature intended as possible on this twenty-first century planet. And messing with a river’s placement of things just isn’t for me.

It’s the river’s decision.

Keep it wild . . .

How to Hold a Trout

How to Hold a Trout

You can’t stop fishermen from holding their trout. All of the Keep ‘Em Wet campaigns and the Ketchum Release tools will not stop anglers from reaching into the water and lifting their prize. It’s a desire to complete the act, to finish the catch, an instinct to hold the creature that we set out to capture.

And why wouldn’t we want to hold a wild trout — to touch the majesty of Mother Nature — to feel a fleeting, darting, irrefutably gorgeous animal and admire it, and to look upon that which eludes us so often and for so long? No, you’re not going to stop fishermen from holding their trout.

Instead, let’s spread the word about how to safely handle trout without harming them. What follows is a real world, riverside understanding of how to hold a trout, all from a fisherman who’s held a few trout, large and small . . .

The River Doesn’t Owe You Anything

The River Doesn’t Owe You Anything

The river doesn’t owe you anything.

It’s been here for millennia. It has bent and grown, widened and shaped the surrounding mountains and carved the bedrock beneath. It will outlast you and everyone who carries your name hereafter. The river is a rolling time machine, carrying a history of the earth, the evolution of life, and yes, even the stories of fishermen . . .

Trophy Hunting: Meet Jercules

Trophy Hunting: Meet Jercules

. . .I’ve gone through a couple phases of trophy hunting, but I’m always careful to return to my roots before the obsession overtakes me. I don’t want to lose my enjoyment for the simple things on the water: the friendships, the forests, the mountains, the mysteries and the way thick, cool moss on limestone feels like a sofa cushion for a mid-stream lunch. Those are the good things that are available every time I put on my waders, even though the big fish usually aren’t.

While going in and out of these phases of trophy hunting for wild browns, I’ve learned that I was looking for big trout in the wrong places. I had to seek out new rivers. And sometimes, I simply had to find new places on my old rivers. Point is, I learned that trophy hunters need a target. It’s not enough to go to the same places and fish the same ways as you always have. You have to learn where the big fish are, go there, and put on your patience pants — because Whiskeys don’t come easily . . .

What do you think?

Be part of the Troutbitten community of ideas.
Be helpful. And be nice.

4 Comments

  1. I penned a rousing call to action that will likely bring the committee members to tears, and their feet…I guess… 🙂 I mean, it’s a no-brainer. There are tons of places you can kill and eat a stockie if you want, don’t let them do it at Penns, too.

    Reply
  2. I’ve only fished Penns once and it sure is something special! Thanks for announcing this, Dom. I’m always happy to voice my opinion when it comes to wild trout!

    Reply
  3. I submitted the form. Good luck!

    Reply

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Articles

Recent Posts

Domenick Swentosky

Central Pennsylvania

Hi. I’m a father of two young boys, a husband, author, fly fishing guide and a musician. I fish for wild brown trout in the cool limestone waters of Central Pennsylvania year round. This is my home, and I love it. Friends. Family. And the river.

Pin It on Pinterest