Article by Jerry Reitz
Fishing the picturesque Black Moshannon creek, one of my favorite small mountain streams, is where the tenkara style truly shines. The stream is adorned with overhanging trees and narrow passages, providing a delightful challenge to deceive the plentiful trout and bass that inhabit its waters. Joining me on these fishing adventures is our trusty fishing dog Sydney, who serves as our enthusiastic cheerleader, urging us to catch that elusive fish. Sydney has a deep affinity for water yet she patiently waits at the water’s edge eager to hear those magical words “I got ’em!”
To tackle this stream, I reach for my dependable DRAGONtail FoxFIRE zx280 Zoom Fiberglass-Hybrid Tenkara Rod paired with a 3.5 level line and a DRAGONtail Pheasant Tail Sakasa Kebari Fly. It’s remarkable to see how this combination consistently proves productive even in the face of high fishing pressure. Whether it’s the fly or the tenkara technique in general I cannot say for certain, but it never fails to entice the fish in this stream.
Typically on this stream I prefer fishing downstream while pulsing the fly very gently upstream. The reason behind the effectiveness of this technique remains a mystery to me. What astonishes me further is the size of the trout this stream holds. Even more impressive is how well the FoxFIRE rod performs in landing these sizable catches. This rod possesses incredible strength and responsiveness allowing me to set the hook at precisely the right moment. While I’m generally not a fan of zoom rods the DRAGONtail FoxFIRE zx280 Zoom Rod has consistently proven itself. Whether I’m targeting small mountain natives or large browns and rainbows. I’ve even had the pleasure of landing some decently sized bass with it.
Black Moshannon Creek offers a truly peaceful experience. Its secluded location provides a tranquil oasis in which to relax and immerse oneself in the art of tenkara. The sound of fish gently slurping bugs off the water’s surface can be heard from afar. We prefer fishing during the early mornings or late evenings for two reasons. Firstly this is when the fish are most active, and secondly the number of pesky flying insects tends to be less during these times.
However a word of caution is warranted for those planning to fish here. The stream also attracts some less-friendly creatures; namely rattlesnakes. We have encountered many on the paths, but as we’ve been repeatedly advised leaving them alone ensures they do the same. Sydney however doesn’t always see eye-to-eye with me on this matter. Therefore, we always ensure she walks behind us, allowing us to lead her away in case we come across one of these slithering residents.
Black Moshannon Creek is a serene adventure offering a peaceful escape and an opportunity to appreciate the art of tenkara. With its abundant trout and bass, beautiful surroundings, and the unwavering support of our fishing companion Sydney it’s an experience that never disappoints.
Jerry Reitz, a native of Pennsylvania, developed a deep-rooted love for the outdoors at a young age. Growing up in the Nittany Valley, he spent his days exploring the limestone small mountain streams and honing his angling skills. In recent years, Jerry’s passion for fishing took an exciting turn when he discovered tenkara.
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