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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Question. How do you typically navigate upstream ? Do you walk the stream primarily on the banks or in the water ? My thoughts are, just about all folks are like me that fish downstream, kind of plow along in the water approaching a likely spot that holds fish, and in that trudging along, spook many fish that otherwise may be catchable. Once at the "spot" you toss to, are you casting from the bank or water primarily ?

Adding: I do realize that approaching from behind the fish is the best policy, but wondering more if even being in the water causing disturbance and vibration, makes the fish dart and become aware.
 

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I'm primarily in the water. I always cast into a fishable section water before I walk into it, especially if its calm water. If the water is too deep or too swift, I move closer to the bank. Keep in mind that disturbances in water can't move upstream through swift current so in many situations you can get fairly close to your intended target. I do a lot of my casting while walking upstream to cover water more quickly. I may walk on the bank for a while if I can still get a downstream retrieve and the footing looks easier. I have an OCD type habit of never leaving footprints if I do walk on the bank. It comes from many years of being as stealthy as possibly on the trapline to avoid getting traps stolen.
 

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As a spinner fisherman, I fish upsteam exclusively and I stay in the water unless it is too deep to wade. I stay in the water and fish upstream because:

1) As you mentioned, trout typically face upstream, so by fishing upstream I am approaching them from behind where they are less likely to see me and spook.

2) It gives me the opportunity to present my spinner in a direction consistent with how trout are used to getting their food, that is, downstream with the current.

3) I want to fish a lot of the less productive-looking water between pools.

4) It decreases the odds of me encountering a rattlesnake.

5) I don't want to have to concern myself with muddy water that I've stirred up entering the pool I want to fish.

6) I want to maintain a low profile to minimize spooking trout.

7) I'm less likely to fall and hurt myself when not climbing up or descending streambanks.

8) I don't want to potentially spook trout every time I get back in the water.

9) I'm better able to minimize vertical line drag during the retrieve.

10) I like to retrieve my spinner with the current because it is easier to keep it down deep.

11) It is easier to set the hook than when fishing downstream and retrieving against the current. (Trout tend to just nip at a spinner when it is retrieved against the current.)

12) I avoid a lot of the deeper hooksets because my spinner is more often moving rapidly.

13) It makes it easier to read the water ahead so that I can decide whether I want to walk on the left, right or center of the stream to maximize my opportunity to minimize horizontal line drag.

14) It minimizes my exposure to ticks.

15) I'm less likely to puncture my hip boots on multiflora rose bushes, barbed wire, and other hazards.

16) So that I can cast constantly and stay in rhythm, similar to how a basketball player can get in rhythm and start dropping three-pointers one after the other. This improves casting accuracy and my hooksetting percentage.

17) So that I leave fewer footprints, which lessens the likely of someone realizing I'm ahead of them and having them loop around me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, you sold me on the "Rattler" thing. That said though, Homey ain't fishin' in rattler country, no way, shape, or form, when they're out of their dens. I'm very afraid of snakes, but can let a spider crawl up and down me.

I was surprised to see a pic on here that a fisherman snapped a few years ago, of a rattler crossing a stream. Scared the living tar outta me.
 

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In all my years of fishing in PA, I've only ever seen one rattlesnake. I've heard a couple, which is scary, because you often can't see them and when you hear them, you know they're close.

I try to be very careful when going through heavy underbrush, climbing over logs, and when near areas that could be basking areas.

I stay in the stream as much as I can as well. Frank spelled it out very well, no need for me to add anything.
 

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I'm a flyfisher and almost always fish upstream, because the fish are looking upstream, so you spook less fish if you fish upstream.

Occasionally you will find a spot that cannot be fished from below, because of some obstruction such as a logjam, so if the spot looks fishy, I'll fish it from the side, or above.

Most of the time I wade in the stream rather than walking on the bank.

Walking on the banks knocks down the streamside vegetation and compacts the soil creating a trail. And for a healthy stream, to limit erosion and create cover, vigorous streamside vegetation is needed.

So to keep the streams healthy it is better to walk in the water than along the bank.

You may kill a few mayfly nymphs walking in the stream, but the trout will eat those. And there are plenty where those came from.
 

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Any trout stream you fish in swpa (unless you are in your home county of Washington) is in rattlesnake country. I see at least one each year. I lose count each year of how many copperheads I see if I spend too much time on a particular waterway. If snakes are your main issue, get a pair of snake chaps to wear over your pants. They are very lightweight. I wear them when I wet wade certain places. The hip boots that I wear are barbed wire proof so I'm hoping they provide protection from venomous snakes as well.
 

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In all my years of fishing all over this state I have yet to see a live rattle snake. I still fish 'those' areas very aware of the possibility though.
 

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I stay out of the water as much as possible. I only cross at shallow riffles and start working the pool above before I get in the riffle. I never wade through a pool because shock waves do travel upstream. If I enter the tail(after fishing it) of a pool to fish the upper part I move very slow to minimize that shock wave. There are also places(eddys) where the trout might be facing downstream, but still be facing the current.

I'm not in rattler territory although there are copperheads around but I feel my waders protect me. I could be wrong and fangs might bite through easily(don't burst my bubble LOL). My fishing shirt/hat is also used for hunting and is soaked in permathin so ticks are a none issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Washington and Greene, pretty sure no Rattlers. I do know there are the mountainous portions of Fayette, Westmoreland, Somerset, that hold plenty in niche areas. Especially the Ohiopyle area. Never heard of, or have known them to be in the lower lands of those same counties.

And to be clear, it doesn't take a venomous snake to scare the snot out of me. Any old common Northern Watersnake will do just fine.
 

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Yes, Rattle Snake fangs will go through a wader like they weren't even there I can assure you that. The protection is hopefully in the airspace between your leg and the wader.
 

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Offhand I can picture eleven rattlesnakes that I've encountered while fishing or walking to or from the stream. I also ran onto one at night while tracking a wounded deer in archery season with a flashlight. I've also seen, alive or dead, at least another ten along roads near trout streams that I fish.

I have never seen a copperhead.

One time while fishing the Little Juniata River I came upon a pretty large snake draped around rock in the water like as if it ahd washed downstream dead. It looked too thick to be a watersnake (I thought it might be a copperhead that someone tossed into the stream) so I nudged it with the toe of my hip boot. Turns out it was still a very alive watersnake as it nailed my hipboot. Luckily the bite was on my instep where the rubber was thick, so it didn't get through to meat. It swam away as if was perfectly healthy. Maybe it was playing 'possum while drapped around the rock?

I believe the fangs from a rattlesnake would go through hipboots like a knife through warm butter. However, since hipboots tend to be loose, I think there is a good chance the fangs would hit air on the inside of the boot. I don't think I'd want to wear breathable waders in rattlesnake country. Too thin.
 

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I do worry about that sometimes as I wear breathable waders almost everywhere I go.

I have seen two copperheads while fishing. There have been times when I thought I saw a copperhead but it was a water snake instead; they look very similar.
 

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Frank spelled it out pretty dang well...


I don't run through water and kick rocks and slosh around when I can help it....you'll still spook fish
..but like was said...far less...


Most of us upstream spinner chuckers have a bit of a different style than your normal trout fishermen...it's not uncommon to cover right around a mile per hour for myself...water dictates my speed..small stream can be quicker...bigger can be slower...


When I first read Frank and trout etc talking I thought they were nuts...moving that fast....catching that many fish..

It's much different than what most people think of trout fishing...


I've spent he entire day one a stretch I can fish in 20mins. Spinner fishing...I've spent a very long time.. hours fishing the same holes...


Just like deer hunting...lots of ways to do it...some guys like different things...


I like the faster paced spinner fishing...


To me it's n adventure...i fish mostly wilderness type areas...miles after i lost cell service...i will put on double digit miles on a day... depending on the area and where I can park it's a lot of pure hiking...ive hiked well over an hour before I see water and that's moving 3-5mph...
 

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icemole said:
My fishing shirt/hat is also used for hunting and is soaked in permathin so ticks are a none issue.
I thought about buying some permathin but the warnings on the label are about a page long. One of the warnings is to not let it touch your skin.

If I soaked my camouflage fishing pants or camouflage fishing jacket in permathin, wouldn't the permathin be against my skin once I start to sweat? What if I get caught in a rainstorm without a raincoat? Does this concern you?
 

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Frank...that's my argument as well....


And I've heard guys say if bugs land on or.crawl on your treated clothes theu are dead within seconds....



Anything that powerful cannot be good to have next to your skin in my mind....
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Kind of a catch-22 with the spray/treatment ? CHANCE of Lyme Disease vs. possible unknown (or known) costly effects of chemicals on/in your body. I view flu shots the same way. Get a shot and take a chance of getting sick, in order to prevent a chance of getting sick.

I really don't trust chemicals, nor the government or companies that issue the "effects" of chemicals. Dow Chemical (or the government) wasn't exactly forthright in regards to the chemicals being used in Vietnam.
 

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FrankTroutAngler said:
icemole said:
My fishing shirt/hat is also used for hunting and is soaked in permathin so ticks are a none issue.
I thought about buying some permathin but the warnings on the label are about a page long. One of the warnings is to not let it touch your skin.

If I soaked my camouflage fishing pants or camouflage fishing jacket in permathin, wouldn't the permathin be against my skin once I start to sweat? What if I get caught in a rainstorm without a raincoat? Does this concern you?
Don't lose a second of sleep worrying about permethrin being a problem touching skin. It is not. Permethrin is the primary treatment for scabies in a cream 10 times the concentration used to spray on clothing and you cover your entire body from the neck down with it - safe down to a 2 month old.

The commercial bottles used to treat 1 pant/shirt set are 0.5% and cost around $7-$10. Go to your lawn and garden section and get a jug of the 2.5% for about the same price or less. Find a spray bottle and mark off 5 lines on it. Fill to the first line with the permethrin, then the next 4 with water and you have a 0.5% concentration with a supply that will last years. One treatment will last 6-12 months.
 
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