Fishing Season: Year Round in C&R Area (Prime: April - mid-November, mid-Jan.-March)

Yellow Breeches Creek - PA

Fishing Outlook & Conditions

Water Temp:

50

Tom Baltz/Endorsed Guide's Tip of the Week

> Watch for spawning trout. There will be two or more fish flashing and working the gravel where the eggs are stashed. Watch if you like but please don't fish for or otherwise disturb them. > Due to construction on the dam of the lake, the parking area at the Iron Furnace at the south end of Boiling Springs Lake is closed until further notice. It likely will not re-open until next spring, but that is only my guess. Anglers wishing to access the upper catch & and release area should cross the creek at Boiling Springs and park to the left on Allenberry's upper parking area between the creek and the railroad tracks. This area is private property so all anglers need to show respect for that, or it could be closed to access. Pick up trash before you leave the area!! > Anglers are reminded that the Extended Trout Season regulations are now in effect in the "open water", aka, Stocked Trout Water. I'm sure that won't be an issue for most anglers; the main item is that the daily trout limit is now three, down from five. Also, no trout may be retained in tributaries to, or in up or downstream areas of Stocked Trout Water or in waters not designated as Stocked Trout Waters. > A stream thermometer should still be a regular piece of equipment in your vest or pack. Rather than high water temperatures, we now are dealing with chilly ones. > There are still possibilities for various fly hatches to occur. While many anglers wish for the experience of a "big" hatch, a trickle of flies is often the best case for fishing. Be observant on the stream and match the size of any flies seen on or about the water. > Terestrials, especially ants and small beetles are still useful for late morning to late afternoon fishing. > A nice trick when confronted with sipping trout is to clip a Griffith's Gnat flat on the bottom and fish it as a small beetle. > Watch where you park along the Breeches and pick up any litter you see when you leave. Landowners are VERY touchy right now due to the heavy fishing pressure over the last several years. The last guy in the lot gets the blame! > On flat, slow water stretches, midges are a major factor. Watch closely to determine what trout are taking. Tiny little CdC and parachute patterns are worth a try. Flies like the F-fly, #22,24 (see "Seven Day Outlook") and the I.C.S.I. Midge in #22-24. Try sight fishing with very small nymphs, Zebras and so forth. > Little BWO's (sz. 22-26) can emerge anytime from late morning to late afternoon. Try I.C.S.I. Midges, #22-24 for them too. I also like tiny CdC Compara-Duns and my ParaNymph in size 18/20. > Meeting the hatches is a very tricky thing...best strategy is to go early and stay late! > It's a great time of the season to add those hot spots to your nymphs. Hot orange and red are particularly effective. Just a little "hot" spot and more natural looks to your nymphs might be the way to go. On darker, cloudy days perhaps a bit more color will entice an extra bite or two. > ALLENBERRY is OPEN! Anglers may drive in, park in the PLAYHOUSE PARKING area to the left of the new gatehouse and walk down to the stream to fish. Check them out at www.allenberry.com or call (717) 258-3211 to see what the status of dining in and lodging are. Might also consider dropping a buck or two on a sandwich or beverage at some point to thank them for parking and access. Currently, there is no parking or access available at the Run parking area due to construction. There is very limited parking off of Criswell Drive. Do not get creative with parking down there! There is room for maybe, three cars. Same goes for the rest of the Breeches. Almost all of the Breeches is private property and every year we are losing access to spots that have been open for many years. Fishing is allowed by the grace of the landowners.

Directions open in app

Map of Yellow Breeches Creek

Water Flow Data

Tidal Conditions

Orvis-Endorsed guides nearby

Tom Baltz

5-Day Outlook as of 11/22/22

The balance of this week looks to have daytime high temperatures into the 50's, with some sun. Friday looks a little sketchy with a chance of some scattered showers but still a great day to get out! Around here, a great many of the local sportsmen (and women) are prepping for the opening day of Pennsylvania's rifle deer season on Saturday, so if you do decide to go fishing over the weekend it would be a wise decision to wear at least an orange hat. A few anglers are still out there, mostly fishing nymphs but still hoping for a late taste of fishing with tiny dry flies. If we get any sunny days, midges could be a factor along with a faint hope of late blue winged olives. Could be a few late caddis flies as well. It's not a bad guess that trout still remember what they look like. Spawning activity has commenced; there have been trout observed in the act of procreation. Please leave any trout observed working gravel alone and let them complete their task. Watch wading in shallow riffles. Those little mounds of clean gravel are where the eggs are! Anglers could still see some mayflies and caddis flies but now midges take on increased importance. Watch for brown caddis (sz. 12-16), little olives (sz. 22), tricos (sz. 24). There could still be some other assorted bugs but these are probably the ones to hope for. Late morning through mid-afternoon are prime times for any insect activity. Don’t ignore ants and small, ladybug sized beetles either. The stream project in the C&R area both above and below Allenberry is complete and is shaping up nicely. It does look different though! The water is generally faster and deeper. There will be bankside plantings done at a later date. Anglers wishing to try fishing anywhere in the C&R area should get down there early enough to scout the area in daylight. It is quite different than it was. Fishing pressure remains steady in some stretches of the creek so if there's several cars parked in the area you are hoping to fish, perhaps further exploration is in order. Anglers are asked to not be creative with parking along the Breeches! Almost all of the Breeches is private property, so all access is courtesy of the landowners. Contrary to what some anglers believe, the Yellow Breeches has not been adjudicated as being navigable. That means that any areas posted against trespass will mean "NO FISHING" by wading or otherwise, unless you want to be the test case. So, don't be that guy...If there is not obvious parking available perhaps looking for a different spot to fish is a good idea. For a minimal commitment, try fishing the Run below Boiling Springs Lake. There are a few trout scattered along its length. Stay out of the stream as much as possible and watch the construction in the upper end. In the few spots that must be waded, try to fish from the very edge. If you do fish, try using tiny BWO nymphs, midge larva/pupa patterns, terrestrials, and midge dries. Concentrate fishing the Run in the riffles. Might get a few in there on the I.C.S.I. Midge or a tiny F fly. Swear at if you like but the F stands for Fratnik, as in Marjan Fratnik, who invented this simple fly (which he called a Fluff Fly) in Slovenia in the early 1980's. Griffith's Gnats in #18-24 are killer too. Think of them as a terrestrial. Try clipping them flat on the bottom. While there are wild trout throughout the Yellow Breeches, some sections benefit greatly from supplemental stockings. For many years the Yellow Breeches Anglers have done an excellent job of stocking the C&R and other parts of the creek. If you fish the Breeches, you have likely caught some of their fish. Give something back and support them by joining the Club. Memberships are only $20 annually and are good for the calendar year. Send check to YBAC, Box 1, Boiling Springs, PA 17007-0001. Contributions to feed the fish are always welcome too. If you see anyone fishing bait or attempting to snag fish in the C&R area or elsewhere for that matter, take a pic and call Southcentral Region office at (717) 486-7087. For nefarious activity of a non-fishing nature call the Pennsylvania State Police at 717-243-4121. Enjoy the fishing and please be courteous to other anglers. And if you get into some fish show us a picture but please don't put the location on Facebook!! You don't wanna be a spot burner! General information is good! It always feels best when you earn it.

Techniques & Tips as of 11/22/22

All of the different fly-fishing techniques are effective at various times on the Breeches. Dry fly fishers should pay attention to the bugs they observe in and on the stream and choose flies accordingly. A good caddis pattern and my ParaNymph cover most of the caddis and mayflies one might see at this time. Choose sizes to match bugs. Don't ignore the terrestrial fishing either. Ants are #1 but beetles and crickets are still worthwhile flies to try. Try ants and small beetles near areas where there are trees and brush along the banks. Hoppers and crickets are best in areas where some meadow grass lines banks. A small tan hopper can suggest the little tree crickets. Try them on a windy day. Nymph fishing by one or another of the popular techniques is the most productive way to catch some Yellow Breeches trout. Tight-line Euro-nymphing, floats, and dry/dropper all have their places. Try BH Hare's Ear's or Bronzebacks with smaller Frenchies or Zebra Midges dropped below the heavier nymph and suspended by your favorite strike indicator. Reaches of medium depth are perfect for the New Zealand Strike Indicator system. Tight-liners might want a soft hackle or similar dropper off a ring with a small nymph off the back of the anchor fly. Water is pretty clear with a light tea color to it so now is a good time to refine your technique and tackle set up with some smaller floats, flies and finer tippets. We are looking at some rainy days ahead and this is the time of the season when bigger trout are on the prowl. Should you decide to don a rain jacket and get out when it's scuzzy, streamer fishing is a worthwhile option. I would suggest Woolly Buggers in size 6-8, or white or black maribou or bucktail patterns, again in sizes 6-8.

Local Species Available Year Round in C&R Area (Prime: April - mid-November, mid-Jan.-March)

  • Fish Icon

    Wild brown trout

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    stocked rainbows and browns

Tom Baltz/Endorsed Guide's Recommended Fly Patterns

"Must-have" fly fishing patterns in descending order of importance:

Name: Colors: Size(s):
Griffith's Gnat N/A #18-24
Elk Wing Caddis N/A #12-16
I Can See It Midge Fly olive, black ##18-24
Blue Winged Olive N/A #16-22
Baltz's ParaNymph natural #12-20
Baltz's I.C.S.I. Ant black #14-16
Bead Head American Pheasant Tail N/A #12-18
TH Zebra Midge black, Olive, brown #18-24
Baltz's Iron X-Caddis N/A #14-16
Shenk's White Minnow N/A #8

Griffith's Gnat

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Tom Baltz/Endorsed Guide's Recommended Gear

Description: About Yellow Breeches Creek

Yellow Breeches Creek is one of the famous limestone trout streams of the Cumberland Valley in south-central Pennsylvania. Winding its way through a mixture of woodlots, farmlands and old residential or summer cottage areas for some 50 miles, its brushy, narrow upper reaches near Huntsdale rapidly gain volume from many limestone spring and freestone brook tributaries. Below the village of Boiling Springs the Breeches becomes a medium to large sized stream coursing eastward, eventually joining the Susquehanna River at New Cumberland. A low gradient stream of gentle riffles and long flat pools, good water quality and varied habitat enables the Breeches to host a broad spectrum of hatches over virtually a year round season. Notable hatches include early black stoneflies, Hendricksons, Grannom and other caddis, sulphurs, Grey fox, assorted blue winged olives and of course, the White Fly, in August. Other mayflies from tricos to Hexagenia create fishing opportunities in addition to excellent midge and terrestrial action. Heavily stocked almost year round throughout its length, there is an extremely popular “catch and release” fishery on the Breeches between Boiling Springs and Allenberry Resort. Fishing is very good up and downstream from this area too, some stretches holding fair to excellent populations of wild brown trout.

Nearest Airport:

Harrisburg International Airport - 45 minutes

Hatches:

You might see the following... > Tan caddis, #12-20 (mid-late morning to early evening) > terrestrials (especially ants and lady bugs; throughout the day) > BWO's, sz. 20-22. (late morning to late afternoon) > midges, olive, brown, black in sizes 20-22 (late morning to late afternoon) > Tan to rusty caddis, #8-14 (late afternoon) NOTE: Chasing hatches is like playing the lottery. Weather conditions are highly variable but very important to timing and intensity of aquatic insect activity. Only time on the water will allow the angler to be there when things get rolling. These reports are from observations/experiences up and down a thirty mile stretch of stream and DO NOT necessarily apply to any given area. You may or may not see the same things as reported.

Best Time to Fish:

mid-morning to late afternoon

Best Stretch:

There are hold over stocked trout scattered throughout the length of the Yellow Breeches and fair to very good numbers of wild trout, mostly browns especially in the reaches upstream of US Rt. 15 to the headwaters. There are areas holding wild trout downstream of there too. The mile long Special Regulations area beginning downstream of Boiling Springs Lake is popular with fly fishers.

Best Access:

There are access points scattered along the stream especially at or near bridges. Several are located in or at local parks. Please use common sense and respect land owner's yards and property. Access the Catch & Release area from the Run parking lot at the south end of Boiling Springs Lake or by parking off Criswell Road. Just across the tracks on the right side of the road there is room to park 3-4 cars between the tracks and the first POSTED sign or cone. Please don't park anywhere else in that area! Access the creek from the South Middleton Township Municipal Authority right of way on the west side of the road. Do not drive onto the right-of-way or block access to it. The former owners of the property along Criswell Dr., Lee and Isabel Castles, both passed away recently so it is suggested that anglers be on their best behavior when accessing the creek from this area so the parking isn't closed completely by the new owners. It has been reported that some anglers are walking down Criswell Road and cutting through the properties along the creek. PLEASE DO NOT DO THIS! Allenberry is OPEN for business. Their website is www.allenberry.com and phone # is (717) 258-3211. Anglers can park in the UPPER THEATER PARKING AREA only, and walk down to the stream. If you access the Yellow Breeches through the Allenberry property, perhaps you might consider checking out the restaurant for a sandwich and a beer afterwards.