Saturday, April 21, 2012


                                    COLD WATER
                      NO, this is not in Ohio. Unfortunately we do not have the limestone that they have been blessed with to the east.  But it is not that far.  And it begins very close to home.            In the town of  Hinckley,Ohio you will notice the transition from flat rolling farm lands, to a more dynamic, hilly and picturesque area.  From their east, the hills begin to gain steam and grow larger with the rock in the ground you see between roads changes as well.  [if your that bored and observant on a drive]  In Hinckley, this is the start of the Allegheny Plateau. this is the direct result of glaciers carving their way down, and leaving what was left behind. A thick layer of limestone, pebble and Sharon conglomerate.  The plateau shows most of her beauty in Ohio around the Hinckley metroparks.  But it is most noticed in Kirtland at Gildersleeve Mountain .  It's elevation is over 1,300 feet.                               
I guess a map was not really needed, but a face with the name sometimes helps.

  Sharon conglomerate settles in 3 distinct places in Ohio. And all 3 places have limestone, sand and conglomerate. This layer is 10-50 feet thick and is compressed causing water to rise , thus spring fed. The sandy bottoms and stream banks you notice along these streams is caused from deterioration of the limestone. Giving it a quick clearing even after a heavy rain. The 3 areas for this are Southwest Ohio, Northeast Ohio and Southeast Ohio. But as mentioned we are only on the fringe.                                                   
  So i give these points and information that I have gathered from studies and reading over a long period of time that have helped me figure out why we are not trout rich.  We do have cold streams, just not of any size .  Just the these few we will mention. I am only writing this to help others find what I  have found. If that makes any sense at all.  So i apologize if a lot of what I write is in laments terms.    

        HOW TO IDENTIFY A COLD WATER STREAM VISUALLY.............................

A typical cold stream , or spring creek will have a mossy substrate  made of several aquatic plant life. Also, look for  2-4 inch cobblestone in the riffles .  From their the stream bottom structure will be as mentioned of sand and very clear with a noticeable temperature change. The banks will be stable with sand as well or plants with a bigger root system.  We could go on, but most of us know what a C.W.H. is already. But when searching for your own recreation it's good to know what to look for if your interested. 

     WHAT A TROUT NEEDS OUT OF IT......     
               The P.H. levels are crucial. Aquatic insects are crucial. Stream banks/erosion are crucial. Which is a problem in Ohio with all the erratic rain and snow we receive. Are biggest problem here in the buckeye state is our silt ridden streams. Which is another strike on the reproduction of our Steelhead. If our precipitation stays at normal levels, and we have a colder than usual spring, we would have a good reproduction rate. Which was the case last late spring. Evidence of this is has been recognized by the Cleveland metroparks. And was written with visual pictures on Mike Dirkelac's ROCKY RIVER FISHING REPORT with the metroparks.  

- The SQM score to be excellent needs to be at least 22 points.   

-  37*-64* degrees is desired for spawning .

-  Water flowing at spawning gravel areas are (supposed) to be at velocities of  1/2-3 feet a second.

 -Aquatic biology in stream must be abundant.        



The Mad River is Ohio's oldest state runned Trout fishery. It is picturesque, and cold until it reaches the northern suburbs of Dayton. The river it's self runs 66 miles. The headwaters of this river are cold as well and you can view them on a biology report from the EPA.  Almost all of these headwaters contain Browns and some do have Brooke as well. The ODNR stocks this river annually with 6-8 inch browns. The good people of Trout unlimited , the mad men  chapter do a fantastic job keeping this river up to par. And for any information you can contact Mad River Outfitters.

I will not go over much with this stream because I have never fished it. But what I can tell you is ODNR has put a lot of time and money in this stream. It was degraded and was falling apart and  was draining into the Mad River, causing problems to the Mad it's self. As of late, and pictured below the Mac has had a serious face lift and holds Browns pretty well. It too, is a spring creek from what I have been told and that makes sense.


Another spring creek in Ohio, and very scenic. Almost all of this water is hemlock lined with with faster water and cool at that. It perhaps is more scenic then my favorite stream in Ohio , the Clear Fork. This stream has that eastern woods feel to it, without the pressure from other anglers. It is also ODNR's newest Trout stream and hopefully it will sustain. This stream is in Lancaster , Ohio proximity and a lot of private land encompasses the stream.  But if you download the stream map for this, you will find their is a park with a good amount  stream on the property. It is in the Clear Creek Metro Park and is a sight to visit. I will add that casting can get tough at times with lots of woody cover and overhang as well. Which to me is a great challenge


This river, the Clear Fork happens to be my favorite stream of anywhere I have fished for trout. Although a borderline C.W.H. , it is to me the most scenic stream in Ohio and pressure is usually very low.  The water is very clean, and almost sterile. In fact it was until the 1950's when fertilizers became a farming alternative. The little runoff it receives actually has helped give this stream a little boost of insect activity. Most of this stream has significant aquatic plants growing to stabilize the banks and trees as well for shade. It can be a dangerous stream if not watching your step, as pools quickly drop very deep. The water is usually a light green color and it's tribs are clear as glass. Their are good browns in this river. But in select places. I have caught most of my Browns in the section near the town of Belville. But the park area has been good as well usually until early June. If anyone needs any information on this river, their are multiple websites and ample information by the ODNR on theirs as well. And once again, you can contact Mad River Outfitters or


As mentioned in the beginning of the post, Their are 3 places with sharon congl./limestone that has settled in Ohio. This, is one of them. The landscape of the Chagrin River valley is that of a New England setting. The water is as well, with streams twisting and rumbling through the Hemlock forests, and animals abound. The Chagrin River has many tribs. Almost all run very cold, and have been preserved with attention. Brooke Trout run in almost all these streams as I have observed, and the aquatic insect hatches are abundant. If you wish to visit the area, which I highly suggest the Geauga County Park District has done a tremendous job with the area. 
The Aurora Branch of this river[chagrin] is a Cold Water Habitat and hopefully the ODNR will start utilizing this branch and stocking it with resident rainbows in the near future. It could very well be an added fishery in the trout department, and raise a lot more money towards Ohio license sales, considering it is in the east suburbs of Cleveland.

We are very fortunate to have the Great Lakes. It has gave us a distinct image and a proud identity.

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