Jjdbike â€“ Yeah, when the conditions on the whole Susky, Deer Creek, Octorara Creek complex are as they are now, fishing for hickory shad is a trying ordeal indeed. When the Conowingo is muddy and at full generation plus several floadgates open, the main part of the Susky is pretty much unfishable for shad. As you saw, shad fishermen are concentrated in a relatively few spots. Definitely not my cup of tea eitherâ€¦ not by a looong shot.
Right now, under current conditions, the only shad action to be found in this complex is right at the mouth of Deer Creek, well up Deer and well up in Octorara Creek. These few, relatively small, areas concentrates the fishermen bigtime, as you witnessed.
During normal flow years when the Dam is at full generation, clearer, (but no floodgates) a lot more locations on the Susky mainstem are available for shad fishing. The number of access points increases 50 fold which helps immensely to spread out the fishermen.
During drier years when the Dam is running only half their generators then an additional LOT MORE areas on the Susky become fishable. At such times access increases 100 fold, (just a wild guess, but you get the picture). Soooo... the degree of flow from Conowingo Dam is the main factor that controls where fishermen can fish for shad.
With todayâ€™s expected heavy rain I donâ€™t expect it to get better anytime soon. Most likely Deer Creek and Octarora Creek will probably blow out and turn muddy and high by late today16 or tomorrow17. (Saturday/Sunday). This is a super bummer year for shad fishing in the whole Susky complex.