Pine Creek Stream Report
In its headwaters, Pine Creek is a Class A trout stream with a mix of brown and brook trout, but it quickly turns into a primarily stocked stream below its confluence with Genessee Forks near West Pike in Potter County. Pine Creek and West Branch Pine Creek converge in the town of Galeton to form Berger Lake, where the water warms significantly in the summer. From there downstream, trout survive higher summer temperatures in the deepest pools, but year-to-year holdover rates are not very good.
Once summer comes, most of the trout will congregate around the mouths of coldwater tributaries and it’s best to leave them alone until the water begins to cool again in the fall. However, during the summer months, the bass fishing can be quite good, especially once you get downstream of the PA Grand Canyon. The farther downstream you go, you’ll find more and bigger smallmouth bass as well as other warm water species, even muskellunge.
The two most popular sections of Pine Creek are the 3.3-mile Delayed Harvest Artificial Lures Only section in the PA Grand Canyon and the 2.8-mile, no-kill section known as “The Stretch,” which begins at the confluence with Slate Run. “The Stretch” is well known as a trophy trout destination thanks to private stockings by the Slate Run Tackle Shop’s Brown Trout Club. Here anglers have the opportunity to catch huge brown trout in one of Pennsylvania’s premiere and most scenic waters.
It might be easier to list the hatches that are NOT found on Pine Creek. This stream is alive with mayfly and caddis activity all spring and early summer and then again in the fall.
Blue Quills, Quill Gordons, Gray Caddis, Hendricksons, Dark Olive Caddis, Cream Caddis, Blue-Winged Olive, Little Brown Stonefly, Grannoms.
Sulphurs, Gray Fox, March Browns, Green Drake, Blue-Winged Olives, Light Cahills, Spotted Sedge, Mahogany Dun, Black Quill, Brown Drake, Slate Drake.
Yellow Drake, Slate Drake, Blue-Winged Olives, Tricos, White Mayfly.
Pine Creek changes dramatically in size from its origins in Potter County to its confluence with the Susquehanna River. When planning a trip, consult the USGS gauge closest to your destination for the most accurate assessment of current conditions.