Riding the rails and being a Trout Hobo just go together! I celebrated the Opening day of Pennsylvania trout season along the Muddy Creek. A local club and Trout Unlimited work together to keep miles of trout fishing open and stocked for anglers.
The watershed has an abundance of native brown trout but is also stocked with rainbows, goldens, and brook trout. Access is by foot or catching a ride on the Trout Train! On this rainy opener, the dry cabin on the train was welcome. Several other anxious anglers enjoyed the free lift up the tracks.
The local TU stocks hearty browns that they raise in their club’s CO-OP facility. The state supplies fingerlings and the club handles the rest. Many of these superb trout become holdovers and provide great year around fishing.
The tracks are also maintained for the stocking and unusual access to the watershed. Trout are placed in aerated tanks and transported along the creek where they are released. The train also serves as a courtesy to transport anglers on opening day and kid events.
I am always amazed how lazy some fishermen can be. They sit down at the closest hole they can find and spend the day. One pool I recall was called The Fat Man’s Hole because of a group that always set up shop along the bank in the same place each year.
I jumped off the Trout Train a couple miles up the tracks and started to fish, Trout were in every decent pool and crowds were light. Most fishermen were near the Fat Man Holes and comfort of their tarps and coffee.
Fishing downstream allowed me to work my way back to the truck. After a few hours, I noticed that I was alone along the creek. Not another angler in site. I cast my Panther Martin spinner into a pool and a huge Golden trout slammed it! 18 inches of Golden trout will make any anglers day. These strong, hard fighting, novelty trout are wonderful sport.
My 5 foot ultra-lite rod and 2 lb. test were getting a workout and I netted the final fish of my limit. Just then, the whistle of the Trout Train was coming down the tracks. I held my trophy high as the train passed with all on board cheering!
For more Montana Grant, visit his website at www.montanagrantfishing.com.