If you have never visited Young Womans Creek in Pennsylvania, can you really call yourself a fly fisherman?
After all, Young Womans Creek is one of premier freestone trout streams in North-Central PA.
With a canopy of tree limbs covering its water, the water stays relatively cool throughout the seasons, so you can tackle this stream any time of the year.
But don’t think flyfishing at Young Womans Creek is a walk in the park. Boulders and rocks are scattered throughout the water, creating many pockets and hiding places for the wily trout.
But crafty trout are no match for the crafty fly fisherman!
The boys from Hite Outdoors do a little fishing in Kettle Creek and Young Womans Creek in Clinton County, Pennsylvania
Young Womans Creek, also known as Youngswomanstown Creek, is a tributary of the West Branch Susquehanna River in Clinton County. At roughly 11 miles long, the main stream runs along the west side of Summerson Mountain, before joining the West Branch Susquehanna River downstream of Renovo. The main stream, along with its left and right branches, all hold trout, but you’ll have better luck sticking to the branches.
The left branch starts in a natural gas field in Potter County, and flows south through Susquehannock State Forest in a deep, narrow gorge. It is joined by smaller tributaries, Greenlick Run, Spring Brook, Shingle Branch, and Mudlick Run, many of which are Class A wild trout streams, before joining the right branch.
The right branch has a “catch and release area” that runs from Beechwood Trail downstream to the state forest boundary. This area is stocked, but you should be able to find some streamborn trout as well as the holdover brown trout and rainbow trout.
As you travel higher up the branches, the streams get smaller and the water gets cooler, making the branches ideal for wild trout.
Young Womans Creek can be accessed from Route 120. The nearest town is North Bend, Pennsylvania. SR 4002 parallels the left branch and SR 4005 parallels the right branch. Roadside access is provided by a number hiking trailheads in Sproul State Forest (see map).
Remember, the further up you go, the better luck you will have finding trout, due to the cooler water.
It is very easy to wade here, as the stream mostly consists of small pools and pocket water with riffles between them.
Be sure to check the stream conditions before heading out to fish Youngwomans Creek. The USGS stream gauge near Renovo, PA provides a good indication of current conditions.
The graph below shows the stream flow (discharge) for the past 7-days. If flows are considerably above or below historical norms (yellow triangles on the chart) then fishing conditions maybe not be ideal.
For the most part, the season is the standard Pennsylvania trout season.
While you can technically fish Young Womans Creek all year round, fly fishing in the winter can be a little hairy, because parts of the stream will be frozen over.
The best time of year to visit the Creek would be early spring, due to its impressive hatches.
Young Womans Creek would also be worth a visit in the fall, as that is when the larger brown trout get aggressive in preparation for spawning.
In the summer months, you’ll want to avoid the lower sections, as the water is too warm to be hospitable to trout.
At Young Womans Creek, you’ll see Blue Quills, Hendricksons, Quill Gordons, Sulphurs, and Green Drake hatches. We hope you like mayflies, because Young Womans Creek has just about every mayfly species that Pennsylvania has to offer.
You’re also likely to see stoneflies, such as Little Yellow and Little Green stoneflies. Oh, and don’t forget about the caddisflies! The most common you’ll see are likely Green Sedges and cinnamon and brachycentrus species.
Here is a list of general patterns, with specific flies from hatches, listed by angler success rates.
Little black caddis (#20)
Blue winged-olive (#14-16)
Spotted caddis (#16)
Dark olive caddis (#16)
Green caddis (#16)
Tan caddis (#16)
Blue Quill (#10)
A 9-foot 4-wt fly rod with floating line is perfect for fishing dry flies and small nymphs on Slate Run. A tapered 9-foot leader, with tippet size 4X to 6X to match the flies you are throwing, is pretty standard.
There are a few on-line retailers that publish Young Womans Creek fly fishing reports. A couple to check out are listed below.
Pennsylvania requires all anglers 16 and older to have a standard fishing license, and a special permit for trout fishing, which can be obtained online or in most sporting goods stores in the state.
Right Branch of Young Womans Creek is managed under Catch and Release, Artificial Lures Only regulations from Beachwood Trail downstream for 5.7 miles to a point 0.7 miles upstream from the confluence with the Left Branch of Young Womans Creek.
Young Womans Creek fishing regulations are available on the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission website.
The closest major airport to Young Womans Creek would be Williamsport Regional airport. However, you could travel to any of the major or municipal airports in North Central Pennsylvania and reach North Bend by car within a few hours. Trust us: the scenery in northern Pennsylvania will make a road trip well worth it.
There are several nearby lodging options that are perfect for the budget conscious fly fisherman. Sportsman’s Hotel and Restaurant is a mere fifteen minute drive away from Young Womans Creek, making it the ideal lodging option. The Black Forest Inn is another tempting option if you are looking to create a memorable trip. The Black Forest Inn frequently has live music performances during the summer.
If campsites are more your scene, it’s hard to top Bit of Heaven Campground in Pennsylvania. True to its name, Bit of Heaven offers you a terrific view of the stars and scenery. Sounds like paradise!
Feature Image by Hite Outdoors
Ken is an avid fisherman of 40+ years who loves to explore. He created DIY Fly Fishing to help encourage and assist the average angler to get out and find new places to fish.
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