A 40-degree sunny day on Saturday, December 28 seemed perfect for Marilyn and I to go fishing for photos on a little road trip to winter fishing hotspots in our region. Our fist stop was a walleye hotspot at the outflow below Woodcock Dam where two anglers were casting the current seam. In our conversation with them, it turned out that I had taken pictures of one - John Moraski of Union City - at the same spot two years ago during the winter. The other - Brian Gerson of Pittsburgh - recognized my name and Marilyn's name from our articles in the PA Angler. Marilyn joined the two fishermen on the wall for a quick snapshot before we headed north.
Our next stop was "The Point" where Conneautee Creek joins French Creek near Cambridge Springs - a hotspot for winter musky. I walked down to talk with a fly-fisherman working a hand-tied oversize streamer for toothy critters. When I introduced myself, he says "I know you from sportsmen's meetings years ago, and I know your wife from her years on the Fish Commission. I'm Jim Simonelli of Girard." The name I certainly recalled the name even though it had been 20 years. When Marilyn joined us, it was like old home week as they caught up talking about steelhead issues.
Then it was off to 16 Mile Creek near North East in hopes of steelhead photos. We encountered two couples from St. Mary's just as the steelhead turned on in the pool they were fishing. I went to work with the camera, getting pictures which included Josh Odell's biggest fish of the day and his wife Ashley's first steelhead ever.
As action waned, Marilyn walked upstream to photograph an angler by the falls. As when approached, he stared at her for a moment and said, "I know you from photographs in the PA Angler. Aren't you Marilyn Black?" This was his 7th trip this year to the steelhead streams for avid PA Angler reader Mike Limerick of Punxsutawney.
Never know who you will meet on NW PA creeks!