Penns Creek Fly Hatch Chart

Penns Creek hatch chart for fly hatches, aquatic insects and terrestrial insects on Penns Creek in Central Pennsylvania. Our chart covers the major mayfly, caddisfly, stonefly and midge hatches you’ll encounter fly fishing Penns Creek.

penns creek fly hatch chart

Mayfly and caddisfly hatch chart for Penns Creek

Fly hatch subspecies, size and emergence dates for Penns Creek. Hatch sizes and emergence dates may fluctuate from year to year due to changes in weather conditions and water flows.

Fly HatchSizeDate
Little Black Stone18Feb 1 – Mar 31
Little Winter Stoneflies14–18Feb 1 – Mar 31
Midges20–26Feb 1 – Dec 31
Blue-winged Olives18–22Mar 1 – May 15; Aug 15 – Oct 15
Quill Gordon14Mar 25 – May 10
Blue Quill16–18Apr 1 – May 15
Grannom12–14Apr 5 – May 5
Light Hendrickson14Apr 15 – May 15
Little Black Caddis (Grannoms)14–18Apr 15 – May 15
Green Sedges16–18Apr 15 – June 15
Pale Yellow Cranefly18May 1 – May 31
Chocolate Dun16May 1 – May 31
March Brown (Gray Fox)10–14May 1 – May 31
Yellow Hendrickson14May 1 – May 31
Yellow Cranefly16May 1 – May 31
Light Cahill12–14May 1 – June 30
Sulphurs16May 15 – June 30
Green Drake8–10May 20 – June 15
Yellow Cahill14June 1 – June 30
Blue Wing Olive16June 1 – June 30
Pale Evening Duns14–16June 1 – July 31
Green Caddis14June 1 – Aug 31
Tan Caddis14–16June 1 – Aug 31
Cinnamon Sedges16–18June 1 – Aug 31
Tan Cranefly14–16June 1 – Sep 30
Grass hoppers8–16June 15 – Sep 30
Ants16–18June 15 – Sep 30
Beetles14–18June 15 – Sep 30
Yellow Drake12July 1 - July 31
Tricos (Little Winged Curses)18–24July 1 – Sep 30
Little BWO Dun20–24July 1 – Oct 31
Mahogany Duns18July 15 – Sep 30
Slate Drakes14–16Aug 1 – Oct 31
White May14–16Aug 15 – Sep 15
Brown Caddis14Sep 1 – Sep 30
Great Autumn Brown Sedges10–12Sep 1 – Sep 31
Little Blue Dun20Oct 1 – Oct 31
Tiny BWO20–24Nov 1 – Mar 31

Major Fly Hatches on Penns Creek

From early spring to late fall Penns Creek is a veritable bug production factory. Nearly every mayfly, caddisfly, and stonefly that exists in the northeast can be found on Penns Creek. However, there are a few major fly hatches that occur each year that anglers should come prepared for.

The Green Drake (locally known as ‘Shad Flies’) is probably the most well known fly hatch that occurs on Penn Creek each year. When the hatch begins, spectators have compared it to a flock of humming birds hovering over the water’s surface. The Green Drake hatch provides some of the best dry fly action all year, and around memorial day anglers flock to the creek to match the hatch and land a trophy brown trout.

Early spring, March through May, hatches of several subspecies of Blue-winged Olives are prolific. There is a resurgence Blue-winged Olive hatches at the end of August that lasts through the mid October. The fall hatch is a bit smaller than the spring hatch, but during either it’s important to match the hatch.

For one month from about mid April to mid May Little Black Caddis hatches take the stage front and center. At about the same time Green Sedges start to appear and don’t disappear until about mid June. Both hatches are prolific along stretches of Penn Creek. Having a few Black Caddis and Green Sedge patterns in your arsenal is a good idea.

The Chocolate Dun is another hatch worth mentioning and planning for. It’s usually in full swing throughout the month May. In the areas of Penn Creek where there’s a bit of current, March Browns also make there presence known during the month of May. From mid May into June Sulphurs (aka ‘Pale Evening Duns’) also join the party and stick around through July.

And let’s not forget some of the early season hatches for those of us who want to get an early start on the action. During February and March the hatch to pay attention to is the Little Winter Stonefly. On the heals of the winter stonefly hatch are Quill Gordons that start to appear in late March and die out the first week of May. Hendrickson mayflies also appear in April and remain through mid May.

If you’re looking for a fly pattern that will produce year round, I recommend the Green Sedge larvae, more commonly known as Green Rock Worm. Pick up a few imitation fly online or at a local tackle shop and keep them with you at all times.

For the summer and fall months focus on the Cinnamon Sedge hatch that runs from June through August. The Cinnamon Sedge is the most prolific caddis hatch on Penns Creek. End of August early September the Great Autumn Brown Sedge hatch not only takes center stage but really dominates the scene.

The last week of May through about mid June Green Drake hatches become a reckoning force on Penns Creek. Don’t forget to match the hatch with some good imitations. During early June Light Cahills begin to hatch. As with March Browns, you’ll probably only find Light Cahill hatches along stretches with current.

Honorable mentions include Yellow Drakes during July, Mahogany Duns from July through September, and Tricos from the first week of July through the end of September. All hatches to plan for and match the hatch with some good nymph and adult fly patterns.

Oh yeah. Last but not least the midges. If you’re going to fish Penns Creek during the cooler water during the early spring or late winter seasons, you should have a good selection of midge imitations handy. Dry flies will work, but midge nymph patterns consistently produce.