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  1. #1
    PAflyguy's Avatar
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    enfield creek/buttermilk creek?

    Hello everyone, I'm from southeast PA and I'm going to ithaca this weekend (14th & 15th). I know there are probably better streams in the area but i'm going with a friend (non-fisherman) so i have to try to sneak in some fishing. i planned on fishing enfield creek and maybe buttermilk creek because my friend can hike while i fish. I was just wondering what to expect. I've gotten some vague reports that these creeks have salmon/steelhead runs? are these runs consistent enough to gear up for and will i be there at the right time? should i expect to encounter trout or warmwater species? how's the fishing been in the area? Perhaps most importantly i need to know which rod/s to bring. I currently have a 9ft 6wt, 8ft 5wt, 9ft 4wt, and 7ft 3wt. Thanks!


  2. #2
    JeffK is offline Trout Hunter
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    Re: enfield creek/buttermilk creek?

    Enfield Ck and Buttermilk Ck wouldn't be worth fishing unless we get a lot of rain. Plus, make sure you stay below the most downstream falls impassable to fish - the rest of the creeks closed on Oct 15. These creeks are pretty small and you can check out the swimming hole at Buttermilk and the pool below the ford to the Treman SP campground at Enfield. Doesn't take long to scope them out, but finding fish will be a long shot.

    There is good and bad news about the Finger Lakes runs this fall. For the good news: the populations of browns and landlocked salmon in Cayuga Lake are at the highest levels in 20 years and the browns started to run a month earlier than usual. I caught a 25" landlocked in Fall Ck and have seen photos of a 30" LL and similar sized browns. There are plenty of juvenile bows running in and out to keep you interested until some big guys show up. The fish are there finally! The bad news is that the water is low right now and it takes high water to push more fish up. Finger Lakes tribs are on the small size and need to be fairly high to move fish. When the streams drop the fish can move out quick.

    Your best shot will be Fall Ck from the Rte 13 bridge up to Ithaca Falls. Fall Ck is the largest trib and has some deeper pockets that hold a few fish in lower water (try to find that pocket everyone else missed). Only have about 1/2 mile of water and can cover the whole thing in a morning easily. The best spawning trib is Cayuga Inlet, but it is long, narrow, brush covered and hard to scope out without a lot of work. Can check out from the Enfield Ck junction down - probably easiest area for a casual fisher. Can also check out the pool on Taughannock Ck - but that is another scope out one pool and see if anything is in.

    I use a 6wt rod. Tactics are just like the Salmon R - bounce egg or nymph patterns on the bottom (right on the bottom!) or swing wets/streamers. More people swing traditional salmon flies in Fall Cr just because its salmon fishing so why not go old school. Bulky olive colored streamers seem to do well for salmon (I got my big one on a swung olive sculpin - but only worked the fish after I saw it roll). If the water is low try to wade carefully and cast as long as you can control your line since the fish will be spooky.

    The hiking and fishing parts of these streams are not the same - except maybe Fall Ck since the best pools are from the Lake St bridge up to Ithaca Falls. Enfield Gorge is my favorite gorge, but I like to start from the upper end.
    One tactic for Taughannock, Treman, and Buttermilk would to park in the lower lot, check out the one pool where fish could be, put your rod away if nothing is in and go hiking.


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    PAflyguy's Avatar
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    Re: enfield creek/buttermilk creek?

    thanks for the info jeff! I'll pray for rain and try fall creek.

    "the best way to destroy an enemy is to make him a friend"

  4. #4
    JeffK is offline Trout Hunter
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    Re: enfield creek/buttermilk creek?

    Good luck. Hope you get one of those lake run fish. The browns in full spawning colors are something to see.


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