York County, Pennsylvania, May 16, 2009
Jin and I had an opportunity to fish together so we decided to hit Codorus Creek to try our luck against the wild brown trout population.

creek is a narrow, brushy tailwater that is the home to lots of very wise brown trout. I arrived at the meeting point first and to kill some time I tossed a few casts into the fast-running water. The Codorus was running higher and a bit muddier that our previous trip but that's to be expected after all the rain we've been having. Using a size 14 MMS with a size 18 olive scud dropper I began working the slower water and eddies close in to me then gradually extended my casts further into the creek until I was fishing the opposite bank. I had no takers for the first 15 minutes but when I tossed out more line to lengthen my drift downstream there was a smashing hit as a brown took the fly on the rise just on the edge of the main current. This was a nice fish and he tried to get into some heavy brush that was hanging in the creek but I managed to steer him out and into clear water. As he got closer I saw that it was the scud that enticed him to bite. I was checking my tippet and knots when Jin arrived.

After gearing up we headed way downstream and fished back up to the cars. Jin took the point and I followed about 50-yards behind him. With lots of water to cover we would throw six casts at the best spots then move on. Jin was having great luck with flies tied by
Tom Baltz and hooked numerous browns.
As we were eating lunch near the creek three people were having a short meeting nearby. They turned out to be representatives of the local Trout Unlimited chapter who were meeting with environmental scientist Eugene Macri who's report on the Big Spring Creek hatchery with the late Dr. Jack Black was instrumental in closing down a source of pollution that was destroying a world class brook trout spring creek. The Codorus TU chapter is trying to stop the construction of a sewage treatment facility that will empty into Codorus Creek and is also looking into purchasing about $1 million in land to protect the fishery. The TU representative was also meeting with a land owner who recently posted his land and denied access to water upstream after an incident with trespassers.

We moved on after lunch and had a great time with the local population of browns for the rest of the afternoon. As the weather warmed the insect population became a bit more active and fish were beginning to rise. We put away the subsurface rigs and broke out the long leaders and fine tippet. Jin hooked a brown that just crushed his fly. This was no subtle take but a vicious slashing attack that put a bend on his rod. He continued up stream but I decided to stick around and play. After resting the area for a bit and remaining still, the fish began to rise again. I counted over 12 fish all around me with some as close as three feet away. But there was one fish tight against the opposite bank that was rising sporadically, but when it did you could tell it was large. I threw everything in the box at it. It would either ignore it, pick something off that was floating near my fly, or create a boil under the fly but not take it. After a half hour of this game I tied on a size 18 black caddis and that was the ticket. I had the fish on and a good bend on the rod but it didn't stay that way for very long and I lost the fish. And it was time for me to head home for dinner--or else.
Jin stuck around for a while longer and picked up a few more fish before he called it a day and headed home.

EQUIPMENT: We used 3 and 4-weight rods with floating lines. The water shallow but very cold, even during the summer, so you might want wear heavy socks under your waders.

DIRECTIONS: I-95 towards Baltimore to 795 Towson to Exit 9B Hanover Pike (30) into Pennsylvania. The road becomes Baltimore Pike (94). Exit Grandview Road, turn right at the restaurant on Blooming Grove Road (216) and several hundred yards later a left on Hoff Road (look for the Lamb of God). Codorus State Park and Lake Marburg will be on your right as you travel down Hoff Road. STOP at the railroad crossing! Codorus Creek runs along a CSX rail line and parts of Park Road, Porters Road, Hayrick Road and Thomas Drive. Look for the small yellow signs that indicate fishing areas and parking. Please respect all property owners and don't trash the stream.