The Future ? - Private Fishing Clubs [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: The Future ? - Private Fishing Clubs

01-10-2003, 09:50 PM

Yes I can see more of this coming, like Europe has. Possibly even in our national parks daily fishing reservations etc. Indicates in the article there are 50 private trout fishing clubs in the smokies.

01-10-2003, 10:09 PM

I hope this is not the future of fishing in the U.S. I aw some of this ocur in northeastern Pennsylvania during the 60's and early 70's. One of my favorite Pocono Mountain trout streams (the Tobyhanna) became a private fishing club after a group of well-to-do "sportsmen" form Philadelpia and New York City bought the land on both sides of the stream for 4 miles from the railroad that owned it. They then stocked it with hatchery browns and ruined the fine brook trout fishing that used ot be found downstream after they cleared away streamside trees (they interfered with the backcasts) causing the stream temps to increase in summer.

This also effectively eliminated access to the upper Tobyhanna because the access road ran through the fishing club's land and they simply put a locked gate on it. Nothing like having a bonus 6 miles of private water without having to pay for the land.

I also saw the Hennryville water at Mount Pocono become a private fishing club, and the only way to become a member was through invitation of a club member and the paying of a member ship fee of $10,000.00 and an annual dues of $5,000.00 for the priviledge of fishing Hennryville Creek. A great loss of one of the streams that U.S. fly fishing developed on.

01-10-2003, 10:36 PM
Take a look at the flys only on the PM, a lot of that land is owned by one association.

If there were no public lands on the river you would not be able to fish her. We need those lands to legally access her so we can keep our feet wet and fish.

Hopefully that scenario will not happen.

01-11-2003, 07:37 AM
At least from a fishing viewpoint, NY has it right - (an exception, for once!)

NY is actively pursuing permanently leasing "Fishing Access Rights" from private landowners. While I knew of the program, I didn't know the details, but I read them recently.

The right of way is purchased "in perpetuity" from the landowner. He receives a one-time payment, and the state receives rights for public access to the stream, and a 30-foot (If I remember right) "right-of-way" on each side of the stream. This "lease" is in perpetuity, and legally binding even if the property changes ownership. The "right-of-way" allows for walking, stream stabilization, etc.

Not a bad plan - it will assure the public some fishing access for the future. About the most famous stream to have this is the Beaverkill, also the West Branch of the Delaware, and many other
good rivers and streams throughout the state.

Don't expect the whole river or stream to be that way - just some sections - and usually very good ones!


01-11-2003, 08:04 AM
Not including the Chatham Anglers Club...naturally;)

01-11-2003, 06:15 PM
While I don't like the idea of having to pay to fish my favorite local waters, Private property is private. The owner has bought the right to use it as he pleases. Many generouse owners allow acces(and some get burned for it), but it should not be taken for granted.
It will never be like Europe because we have so much public land. I hardly ever fish on private water, so it is not a big deal to me. When I start to explore N.Maine more, the Paper companies own all the land up there. It is at their pleasure that peolple fish there, and it seems that the situation does not look good. The Paper industry is failing, and it is becoming an attractive proposition to sell off the good stream and lake access. A scary proposition to be sure, but I don't think that sportsmen should be looking for a free ride. Someone has to pay for the priviledge.
It is my hope that a combination of funds from federal(running a deficit), state(runnning a deficit) and conservation(liberal), sporting groups(cheap) can buy the rights befor some billionare beats us to it. If the billionare wins out, I hope he shares, but I don't expect the privilage.

01-11-2003, 07:12 PM

I agree, yes I remember all that paper company land up in Maine.

I have no problem paying to fish access controlled quality waters and will consider joining a private club with good trout and/or andramous fish water.

There comes a point in your life where you just get fed up with some of the antics seen on public waters, and I don't want my limited fishing days ruined by some one I have no control over.

PM Out

01-13-2003, 08:05 AM
Anothe roption is leaseing an area. We used to lease some land in NW Ind. that Salt creek flows thru.

It was private and loaded with fish had some very good days there. It was well worth the $150 a year to fish there.

Perhaps these clubs are a sign of the times, but you will need some type of public water just to entice out of state $$$.

01-13-2003, 08:47 AM
Thats a steal $ 150 a year. Going to have to start and check into this for sure. Let me know if you see anything that looks interesting and affordable.

Bet we could get at least a few other forumn members interested also.

PM Out

01-13-2003, 01:12 PM
It was $150 per man, still a good price. Have my eyes on some land on the Galena. Just having a hard time getting a hold of the land owner.

01-13-2003, 01:16 PM
Let me know I will pull out my heavy timber small stream steelie rod again. How are the bugs there ?

PM Out

01-13-2003, 02:59 PM
It's not a good summer place, fish it mostly in the fal and winter. If we get cool weather off shore breezes and good rain summer fish head up there. Some not many but a few.

01-16-2003, 09:33 AM
It seem like the fly fishing club situation is a double edged sword. If the clubs truly cared about preserving the streams instead of seeing dollar signs then it could really be a decent thing. I don't like the idea of needing a invitation to fish and paying out thousands a year, that's just crazy. I wouldn't mind paying a couple hundred bucks a year if I felt it was going to help the future of the stream. It could keep some of the fishing pressure off the stream, but if they are introducing non-native fish to the stream or destroying habitat then they are doing more harm than good.