In a more serious vein (than was my previous message about trail damage), I have serious concerns about the extensive loss of shade cover over the Gunpowder as a result of beaver activity. This is especially prevalent in the section between York and Big Falls Roads, where many large trees along the stream have been either felled or killed by girdling. This exposes significant portions of the river to direct sunlight during the summer months, not only upping the water temp, but eliminating many potential holding areas for trout.
To be sure, beaver are a natural part of the ecosystem surrounding a healthy river, but too many of them is counterproductive to maintaining a fish-friendly habitat. Do you know whether or not this issue has been addressed by the DNR?
If you have not yet picked up a pair of new shoes for Winter Fly Fishing along the Gunpowder here are a few to consider:
The Patagonia Sticky Rubber shoe is a favorite of our guides. They’re the lightest shoe in the shop, don’t pick up snow and grime and are, well, sticky.Have a minute? Read a review from Jason du Pont. We’ve used them above Falls Rd, on the Gunpowder River, along the Savage River and on the North Branch of the Potomac River without fail.The Chota Stl+ and Chota Citico are some of the most popular shoes in the shop. They have a patented convertible footbed that accomodates a hex head spike-read traction on icy, wet and muddy trails, and are comfortable right out of the box. The Stl+ is one we’ve used in the guide service for years, has a quick, shock-cord lacing system and a waterproof leather upper. The Citico Shoe is a nylon version of the Stl+ with speed laces and the same patented footbed.
For what it’s worth, I’ve noticed also that there are sections of the Gunpowder trail system that suffer from equine traffic during wet periods, especially in the Bunker Hill area and downstream from Masemore. However, as much as I wish that the stream and environs were limited by law to use by fly fishermen over 65, I can’t support excluding the horse crowd unless large dogs are also banned from the area. I’ve never had a horse jump into a pool I was fishing and thrash around…
We have spillover! We started seeing the gauge move a bit last weekend and we’ve had consistently higher flows in the 45 to 70 Cfs range since then and was 68 Cfs at 10:15 this morning-thanks USGS! No big temperature changes are afoot because we’ve had relatively cold nights without alot of warming periods during the daylight hours so nymph away, particuarly with red butts in the #12-16 range. Try small streamers along the banks and dress warmly.
Thanks to Mike R. from for the following Stream Report:
Yesterday was pretty good…the Masemore run was not good, only caught one but spooked a bunch more fish, but could not get them to take anything. The Bridge Run off Falls Road was much better – nymph dropper with size 16 prince followed by a size 18 hare ear…got fish on both…could have probably used some small weight in the deeper section but caught 5 fish in riffles at end of several of the larger runs.
Thanks again…probably going to go out again on Monday.
I’m sure that many folks feel this way already, having watched the latest video offering on the site, but without detracting from the very important issues raised by Mr. Kostrubiak, please let me raise this anthem: God bless Dave Gerhardt and God bless Jason Du Pont, whose video and fishing talents are sure to take him far. Kudos to all involved for making us all aware of the importance of the Gunpowder in our lives and for helping us to understand that the river matters, the trout matter, the trails matter and by golly, a 93 year old man flyfishing matters.
I just got back from some winter fishing in North Central Pennsylvania and it gave me goosebumps to hold a 10 inch Brookie in my hand. It was really great to extend the pleasure of that winter fishing trip by watching Mr. Gerhardt and Mr. DuPont.
Tight lines, boys. And lets not forget Mr. Kostrubiak’s points, either.