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> > Potter county: is it true?

PsyflyJuly 31st, 2007, 3:43 pm
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 18
I've been researching, as some of you may know, fishing in PA. After looking at the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission web site, I've discovered 38 class A wild trout fisheries and 7 wilderness trout streams in Potter county. Both classifications support natural reproduction and wild trout. I now live just over the border in NY. Does anyone know Potter county and willing to educate me on some of these streams?
"If I might be judge, God never did make a more calm,quiet, innocent recreation than angling" Isaac Walton
RleePJuly 31st, 2007, 5:51 pm
NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 341
Go here: and look up the contact info for the God's Country Chapter of TU in Coudersport and go to a meeting. You'll meet guys who will show you around.

For now, a good place to start (dependent upon water levels, weather and whatnot) is anywhere in the Pine Creek drainage from Galeton upstream, (with the exception of the West Branch below Lyman Lake).

Get a Pennsylvania DeLorme atlas and pick a creek, any creek in this portion of the drainage. They're all full of wild fish..
PsyflyJuly 31st, 2007, 7:17 pm
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 18
I've been scouring the Delorme map the past week highlighting water. Thanks for the recommendation to contact TU
"If I might be judge, God never did make a more calm,quiet, innocent recreation than angling" Isaac Walton
SlateDrake9August 6th, 2007, 6:00 pm
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
We do have a lot of wild trout waters, but not all (read a significant amount) of them are worth the trip. Many can be straddled when there is a good amount of water in them.

Stay at home and tie some flies for the fall. We have less than no water and fishing for trout that are struggling to survive is not very sporting. Many small tribs to the bigger streams are pretty easy to cross without getting wet right now. The trout have enough on their plate trying to avoid coons, birds and snakes, let alone being hooked, tired out and released to be easy pickins for predators.

Once hurricane season hits our area we will have water again and the fishing and survival conditions for the trout will improve.

Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
PsyflyAugust 7th, 2007, 6:39 am
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 18
Yes, I know here in the East summer can be a dreadful time to fish many waters. I'll head down to Spring Creek anyway, hopefully it will be ok, otherwise it will still be a good camping trip! I'm hoping it will continue to be cool and fishable. So, the fishing picks up in the fall. I'll be waiting patiently.
"If I might be judge, God never did make a more calm,quiet, innocent recreation than angling" Isaac Walton
MartinlfAugust 7th, 2007, 7:51 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
Check in with Flyfisher's Paradise (Google will help find their website) for other streams near Spring Creek. Spring Creek is low, but plenty cool, and has been fishing well.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
SlateDrake9August 7th, 2007, 3:53 pm
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144
I've seen lots of references to Flyfisher's Paradise shop on this board. Have any of you ever been in that shop or do you just do internet shopping there? Personally, I will not go there again. I have been in there probably a dozen times in the last few years and the way the guys in that shop treat me and others in there sucks. They are not friendly by any means, if you can get the attention of one of the clerks it appears to be a real bother to them and I have heard them make fun of customers when they leave the store on 2 seperate trips down there. When the clerks do talk to you, it is condesending and very obvious that they believe they are the world's most knowledgable expert on whatever they are talking about and nobody else knows a thing. On my last trip there I listened to them argue with a guy from across the state about the water temperatures in his home waters.

Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Shawnny3August 7th, 2007, 5:10 pm
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
As a frequent customer of FFP, let me say a few things to your observations, Slate. First, I've heard all the things you've said before. I've found, however, that if you can get past the cantankerousness of those guys, they really are good guys who know more about Centre County fishing (and fishing in general) than just about anyone else I've ever met. So the chip on their shoulders is pretty well placed. The guys in the shop have probably got a few hundred years of total experience on local streams. That said, a good friend of mine left his job at FFP because he did not feel that customers were being treated well. So there is the definitely truth in what you say.

A new flyshop recently opened down the street from FFP. One day I walked in there to check it out - very nice shop with most of the essentials (though their tying section was a bit weak). Let's be honest - most of the people frequenting these shops are interested in two things, good advice and flies. The guy behind the counter was very nice and a knowledgeable guy. But I guarantee you that the 2-3 guys FFP has continually in its shop collectively know at LEAST 2-3 times as much as that guy does. So if you can brush off the attitude you'll get better advice at FFP. Second, in that other shop I asked the guy who ties their flies. He responded by telling me what COUNTRIES they came from. Walk into FFP, and the guy who tied the fly you're buying is usually the one selling it to you... and caught a thousand fish with it on an area stream, not true of the 8-year-old Chinese girl who's cranking out slate drakes without ever having seen one. If you are interested in buying Chinese flies for Centre County streams, go right ahead, but I'll take the Steve Sywensky tie, thank you.

And not every employee in there is cantankerous. Bob Hostetter, for example, offered to bring me, from his own tying bench, a material I was considering purchasing so I could try it out before special ordering it. That's pretty good customer service. And I've had Steve more than once respond to me when asked if they carry a certain material, "Yeah, we've got that, but you don't want to buy it. You've got some such-and-such, don't you? Because if you tie that on like so, it works better and that way you don't have to buy something you don't need." Another time I heard a customer ask Steve if he had any such-and-such, and Steve said, "Yup - I just got a shipment in yesterday. But I won't sell it to you, because the quality sucks. Come in next week and I'll have something for you worth buying." So the boys at FFP will steer you straight if you let them.

Is it worth the occasional attitude? Absolutely.

Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
SmallstreamAugust 7th, 2007, 5:35 pm
State College, PA

Posts: 103
thats a shame, the times I have gone in there they seemed pretty cool. I agree with shawnny though that for the streams of central pa they are probably the best source for the area streams. Plus I beleive that they tie all of their own local patterns which is another plus. I noticed the other fly shop too recently, Im scratching my head wondering if it was a good business decision to open up a new fly shop there because ffp is THE established shop for that area, I think they have been there since the 70s or something and I think that most people would go to FFP since they have the history and roots in central pa, but what do I know.
IEatimagoAugust 8th, 2007, 9:01 pm
Spring Mills, PA

Posts: 97
no matter their knowledge if they are making fun of the people paying for the food they put on the table they can go fuck themselves..
i would love to hear some dumb ass with no hustle working at a fly shop try and some something disrepectfull to me.

IEatimagoAugust 8th, 2007, 9:07 pm
Spring Mills, PA

Posts: 97
and arguing about the temperature of some ones home waters is stupid,
people do it with me all the time, and i'm like hey jack, do you work all day?
cause i don't, so i can walk the entire stream with my thermometer and check temp yes i know where the cold spring comes out yes its at 58 degrees actually,
RleePAugust 9th, 2007, 7:53 am
NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 341
I have a slighty different viewpoint on all this...

First off though, let me say what while it has been a few years since I've been in FFP (I moved out of state), I was always treated well there and fondly remember a lot of long conversations I had with a former partner who was known for spitting tobacco juice into an empty orange juice carton...:)

The only place I think I've been treated as well and as courteously was when Tom and Deb had the shop in Slate Run.

So, there's that.

Anyway, I have sympathy for both sides of this question. Retail work isn't easy in any event and it becomes less easy if your tolerance for half-wits or unpleasant people isn't real high or happens to slip because you have a cold, your arthritis is kicking up or the Mrs. crawled up up your vent this morning about this or that while wearing her rhetorical spurs. And you can't put a sign on the door that says: "No Unpleasant People Today Please, We're Irritable..."

Unfortunately, there are times when we experience a residual effect of the last jerk through the door to aggrevate staff on duty. We may be the greatest guy or gal out there waving a graphite stick, but from time to time, we'll end up getting at least a little of the blowback from the last guy.

After all, most PA fly shops are independent ops often owned by eccentrics (to say the least, over the years, the names have been legion)who love the water or the sport so much that they have to be near it all the time. And they often hire folks who are the same way. The point is that none of these folks have probably been to the Macy's School of Customer Stroking and learned all the nuance involved in tolerating and handling half wits without letting it show. Mostly, they're just guys who love to fish and to tie.

On the other hand, it is the duty of the independent business person to bear up under the flow of sometimes less than cordial or pleasant customers. If they can't do it, maybe they shouldn't be in the biz. It's part of being a professional, as I see it.

I worked in a fly shop for a couple years. I met some truly wonderful people and made a lot of new friends that I continue to be in contact with and who I will always cherish. But I don't know if I could do it again.

I don't have a very high tolerance for unpleasant, pushy, bitchy, cranky people.

That's my take, at any rate.
IEatimagoAugust 9th, 2007, 8:44 am
Spring Mills, PA

Posts: 97
i like your take on it.
Shawnny3August 9th, 2007, 11:55 am
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
I like your take on it, too, RleeP - very wise words.

To offer a little counterpoint to the "knowing the temps on someone else's home waters" peeve, I wonder how many times Joe Jackass comes in from a thousand miles away and walks into FFP acting like he's been on the streams around here every day for 40 years. When you actually HAVE been on the streams around here every day for 40 years, I can see how your patience for this kind of customer would wear thin. And I'll bet that happens about 20 times a day at FFP in May.

That said, though, RleeP is right - that's still not an excuse to treat customers badly.

Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
KonchuAugust 9th, 2007, 2:33 pm
Site Editor

Posts: 491
All I know is that I'd like to put a sign on MY door that says: "No Unpleasant People Today Please, I'm Irritable..."
SlateDrake9August 10th, 2007, 4:58 pm
Potter County, PA

Posts: 144

Looking at your statement above I can only say you are entitled to your opinion, but I must disagree. I don't care how much you know or how long you've done it, it is not okay to have a chip on your shoulder when it comes to customer service.

I understand your take on foreign tied flies, as I believe in buying American any time you can, but I don't think it really matters if you have ever seen a slate drake to be able to tie an outstanding one. I've still never seen a Royal Coachman flying around or floating on the water, but I can tie one hell of one following the well established patterns that are published. I however, do not usually buy flies so it is a moot point to me, other than buy American first.

I go into shops to meet like minded folks, B.S., tinker around and buy stuff. Information is not always that important to me because I usually don't get any new information from many shops, just the same stuff repeated ad nausium. If I find the folks in a particular shop unappealing to deal with, I don't deal with them. Although I prefer to buy in person, I can buy anything on the net that I want. So if your customer service sucks, as I believe it does in FFP, I buy elsewhere. They loose I don't, as I still get what I want.

My 2 cents.
Fishing with bait is like swearing in church.
-- Slate Drake
Shawnny3August 10th, 2007, 5:54 pm
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
I can accept that, Slate. It's absolutely your prerogative to take your business elsewhere if you feel you are not treated well.

Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
LamAugust 24th, 2007, 1:19 pm
Lancaster, PA

Posts: 79
Getting back to the Psyfly question, check out this web site

As you will see, it is written by Tom Dewey who has live in Potter County (Coudersport) nearly his entire 70 or so years. Click on the link that says "Potter County Streams". It will give you a rather extensive list of streams with personal notes and stories on most of them written by Tom over the years. As a side not, he occasionally publishes outdoor - fishing more often than not - articles in the Potter County paper. These articles are also available on his site.

Tom breaks the Potter County Streams into three sections; Allegheny Watershed, Genessee Watershed and the Susquehanna Watershed.

Just FYI all three of those watersheds begin in northern Potter County. Basically at the same place. It is one of only several "triple divides" in the country and perhaps the only triple divide east of the Mississippi.

I grew up in Coudersport and have a pretty good working knowledge of the local streams but Tom's web site does a great job of describing general conditions, species of trout available, stocked and not stocked, etc. I find some of fishing stories particularly interesting.

Hope this helps.
PsyflyAugust 24th, 2007, 9:35 pm
Wellsville, NY

Posts: 18
Thanks Lam, I sent you an email. I did look at tom Dewey's site and find it absolutely remarkable. I emailed him also. It's amazing how much knowledge of the region he has and his willingness to share it. A wonderful resource. Thanks again!
"If I might be judge, God never did make a more calm,quiet, innocent recreation than angling" Isaac Walton
BwolfNovember 10th, 2009, 9:58 am
york, pa

Posts: 1
I don't do much fly fishing, mostly spinners. But if i treated anyone like that at my print shop, i would not be in business very long. Also if i was treated like that at any "tackle store" i would definitly not return no matter how much someone knows about fly tying or fly fishing.
I would rather catch less trout than to support that kind of business practice

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