Thomas E. Baltz
Orvis-Endorsed Fly-Fishing Guide in Mount Holly Springs, Pennsylvania
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Sample of Typical Itinerary
Eight hours, plus time for lunch, is an average day trip. Typically, we meet at a mutually convenient and agreed upon location in the Boiling Springs, Pennsylvania area about 8am and return to that location around 5 or 6pm. Arrangements are flexible though. Lunch is a part of all-day-long trips and breaks are usually taken just before or after peaks in the fishing activity. Most often we stop and order excellent sandwiches from one of the area's quaint country stores but some trips are to more remote locations, where sandwich "fixins" are provided for a nice picnic lunch. For winter season trips, I suggest half- to three-quarter-day outings, which do not include lunch. Snacks, soft drinks, and water are in the cooler on all trips.
Species You Fish for by Season
Wild brook, brown, and rainbow trout are our primary targets. Inevitably, some stocked trout will be mixed in most streams except the spring creeks, Letort and Big Spring. Seasonal trips to medium-sized warmwater streams for smallmouth bass are part of the season here.
Yellow Breeches Creek has the widest range of fly hatches, from grannom caddis and Hendricksons in the spring, through tricos, white flies, little blue-winged olives, and October caddis from late summer through fall. Monitor the stream report for the Yellow Breeches on the Orvis website for more details. Spring creek hatches on Letort and Big Spring revolve around sulphurs and small BWOs, with some caddisflies in the mix. Midges are ubiquitous and great fishing with terrestrial insect imitations is seasonally available on all streams, where their use and design was pioneered. Smallmouth bass are targeted with small surface bugs, streamers, and crayfish imitations.
What Should Customers Bring?
- Pennsylvania fishing license/trout stamp (you will need both if 16 years or older; purchase them online at www.pa.wildlifelicense.com)
- Waders and wading shoes (hip boots are of limited use)
- Fishing hat with a brim
- Sunglasses (polarized lenses, please)
- Rain gear (not windbreakers or plastic parkas); quality breathable rain gear is suggested
- Sweaters, fleece, etc. to suit the season
- "Personal" items including but not limited to: toilet paper, comb, Handi-Wipes, medications
- Fly rods, reels, lines (floating); Orvis rods/reels are available for your use, if you wish
- Leaders (not fluorocarbon)
- Nylon tippet material for dry-fly fishing, fluorocarbon for nymphs; 4X, 5X, and 6X will be the most useful sizes
- Flies: you are welcome to bring what you have for evaluation—call or e-mail for specific patterns; they are not necessarily included in the guide fee but we usually tie on one or two of mine during the day
- Fishing vest stocked with fly floatant (powder and gel types), snippers, hemostat, two sizes of strike indicators, assorted split shot
- Set of dry clothes
The above list may have missed an item of two that you will find useful during a day on stream. All guests are responsible for notifying me of medical conditions, as you see fit.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How far are you from major cities?
A. Carlisle, Pennsylvania is less than 2 hours from the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. area, 2½ hours from Philadelphia, and 3 hours plus from New York City.
Q. Where should I stay when on one of your trips?
A. Various accommodations are available ranging from popular hotels, through B&B operations. Particularly recommended for quaintness and convenience is Allenberry on the Yellow Breeches (allenberry.com), a family-owned operation just outside of Boiling Springs.
Q. Where are the best places to eat nearby?
A. Excellent dining experiences are available, with the Boiling Springs Tavern being a particularly favorite place.
Q. What other attractions are in your area?
A. Other experiences for fishers and non-fishers alike are Gettysburg Battlefield and attractions and the Hershey, Pennsylvania complex of entertainment options, all in addition to beautiful countryside and small-town touring.
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