For those who don’t know it or won’t realize it until they come to camp in Potter County, Freeman Run has been placed on the Class A stream list. What does that mean you are wondering? It means the Fish Commission will no longer stock any of the stream.
Come next April on the opening day, don’t expect to stand at your favorite fishing hole and catch your limit. Nope, more than likely you may catch a fish or two before heading a couple miles downstream to where the First Fork of the Sinnemahoning River has been stocked. There you can stand among the crowds gathered around the stocked holes.
Placing the stream in Class A is one thing, but after the drought we had during the summer there surely isn’t much left in the stream. I’ve always fished the stream year around and, from the few outings I’ve had during the last couple of weeks, it’s not looking good. Between the blue herons, bald eagles and the fish that died from low water conditions, it doesn’t look favorable.
When I looked at the report from the streams fish study that showed it as a brown trout stream, it really had me scratching my head. Hmm. As far back as I can remember it always held a sustainable population of wild brook trout: a few keeper size ones and loads of undersized ones.
Besides, all those brown trout are those that get stocked every year by the local anglers club. Many of them get released by the anglers who practice catch and release.
Will the classification affect me? No, because I enjoy fishing for the wild brook trout that I’ve caught over the years and those that took my offerings just recently.
But for those that enjoy the kids fishing derby at the Austin Dam Park, the local kids around town who fish the stream, and the families who gather in their backyards on the opener to fish, there’s already a lot of disgruntled people.
Do we need another Class A stream in the area? No, not as far as I am concerned.
If you look around, there are more than enough Class A streams spread out all around southern Potter County. They really don’t hold many trout due to all the anglers who fish Class A streams for wild trout.
This sport has drawn a large crowd of anglers in the last couple of years due to all the publicity from articles written about it. If you don’t believe me, just watch Facebook and see all the photos posted by anglers posing along a small backwoods stream with wild trout they’ve caught.