Blue Stream Fly Fishing
Fly Fishing Report for:

Susquehanna River - Harrisburg - Pennsylvania

Hatch Chart - Best Access/Spots - Local Fish - About

Water Flow Chart

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Using Water Flow Charts & Weather Reports: Begin with our water flow charts to grasp stream velocity and volume – look for stable or rising trends to pinpoint ideal fishing times. Learn to interpret sudden spikes or drops, which can indicate potential challenges. Next, consult our weather reports to understand ambient conditions. Pairing the two, you can anticipate fish behavior, choose the right gear, and select the best fishing spots. Use these tools together for a holistic approach to your next fishing adventure.

In-Depth Weather

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Directions To Location

Hatch Chart

Month Hatch Time of Day Recommended Fly Sizes Popular Fly Patterns
January Midges Warmer parts of day #18-24 Zebra Midges, Griffith's Gnat
February Midges, Early Black Stones Mid-afternoon #18-20, #14-16 Zebra Midges, Black Stoneflies
March Blue Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22 Blue Winged Olive Emergers
April Hendricksons, Caddis Mid-afternoon, Evening #12-14, #14-18 Hendrickson Dry, Elk Hair Caddis
May Caddis, Sulphurs, Green Drakes, Brown Drakes Afternoon, Dusk #14-18, #12-14, #10-12, #10-12 Caddis Pupa, Sulphur Dun, Green Drake Dun, Brown Drake Emerger
June Sulphurs, Slate Drakes, Light Cahills Dusk #14-16, #12-14, #14-16 Sulphur Parachute, Slate Drake Cripple, Light Cahill Dry
July Terrestrials, Tricos Early Morning, Hot Days #20-24, #10-12 Ant Patterns, Trico Spinner
August Terrestrials, Tricos Early Morning, Hot Days #20-24, #10-12 Beetle Patterns, Trico Parachute
September Terrestrials, Blue Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22, #10-12 Grasshopper Patterns, Blue Winged Olive Dun
October Blue Winged Olives, October Caddis Afternoon #18-22, #8-10 Blue Winged Olive Cripple, October Caddis Pupa
November Blue Winged Olives Afternoon #18-22 Blue Winged Olive Spinner
December Midges Warmer parts of day #18-24 Zebra Midges, Ice Cream Cone

While we strive to ensure the precision of our hatch charts, some reflect broader river region insights. Through ongoing partnerships with local guides and fly shops, we’re committed to refining our data. Should you notice any inconsistencies or have feedback, we welcome you to reach out. 

Best Fishing Spots

Fly fishing on the Susquehanna River near Harrisburg brings plenty of satisfying catches. Some ideal spots include:
  • City Island: Accessible via a causeway, this island provides expansive shoreline close to several fish species.
  • Fort Hunter: Situated upriver at the mouth of Fishing Creek, Fort Hunter’s gravel banks and nurseries are great for catching smallmouth bass and catfish.
  • Wildwood Park: This park contains a large lake rich with panfish, making it an ideal spot for fly fishing.
  • Duncannon: The scenic rocks and ledges are a fantastic spot for catching bass and other fish species.
  • Middletown: Presented with a confluence of Swatara Creek and Susquehanna River, this spot offers great diversity of fish.
Remember to check local regulations before you head out, as some areas may have fishing restrictions.

Best Access Points

If you’re planning to fly fish in the Susquehanna River around Harrisburg, some of the best access points include:

  • City Island: This sports complex has plenty of parking and easy access to river spots.
  • Front Street Boat Ramp: This access point is located in Riverfront Park. It’s a public boat ramp making it very accessible for fishermen.
  • Fort Hunter Park: Five miles north of the city, it’s renowned for smallmouth bass fishing.
  • Wildwood Lake: Part of the floodplain of the Susquehanna River, this park is home to a variety of fish especially great for fly fishing.
  • Gold Star Park: Close to Harrisburg’s downtown, it offers easy river access for shore fishing.

Each of these spots can provide a different fishing experience, and all are easily accessible within the Harrisburg area.

Local Fish

  • Smallmouth Bass: One of the most popular species for fly fishing in this area due to its abundant population and aggressive feeding habits.
  • Carp: A challenging species to catch on a fly rod, adding a thrill to the sport. Carp in the Susquehanna River can grow to an impressive size.
  • Northern Pike: Known for their voracious appetite and spectacular fights, making them a popular target amongst fly anglers.
  • Muskellunge (Muskie): The largest species of pike, and is a prized catch amongst fly anglers due to their size and strength.
  • Walleye: A highly prized species in the Susquehanna due to their elusiveness and the incredible taste of their white, flaky meat.
  • White Catfish: Targeted by many fly fishers due to their strong fight and impressive size, especially in the nighttime.
  • Striped Bass: This species migrates through the Susquehanna River and is known to put up a great fight, making it a popular choice for fly anglers.
  • Channel Catfish: A species known for their size and strength, making them a favorite target for many anglers.

About The River

Ah! The Susquehanna River – a historical gem if there ever was one. Snaking its way through the beautiful city of Harrisburg, this river is more than just a pretty sight – it’s a window into the past!

Historically, the Susquehanna was a critical travel and trade route for Native American tribes. Later, during the Industrial Revolution, it turned into a bustling lifeline for coal transportation. Fast forward a few decades and the river is now an inviting place for recreational activities.

  • Native American link: Iroquoian-speaking Susquehannocks were the first inhabitants, earning the river its name, which means ‘Mile Wide, Foot Deep’. Isn’t that intriguing?
  • Industrial Revolution: The river played crucial role in transporting anthracite coal and timber.
  • Today: It’s a popular spot for fishing, boating, and other scenic river activities. A perfect blend of history and nature!

Over time, the Susquehanna River has evolved, just like Harrisburg itself, but its rich history continues to flow within its currents.

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