September 2018 Club Meeting: Fly Fishing the LeTort

An Evening with Mike Klimkos & Fishing the Letort Spring Run


“If you go into a fly shop anywhere: Maine, Montana, Miami, Beijing or Warsaw and mention the Letort, people have heard of it. It is on most fly anglers’ ‘bucket list.’ If you stand along the banks of the stream, sooner or later the entire fly fishing world will pass by.” – Mike Klimkos

The September 11th meeting of the PVFF will feature author, Mike Klimkos from Carlisle, PA. Klimkos will be speaking about the Letort Spring Run — world-famous trout fishery at Carlisle — and the ongoing efforts to conserve the headwaters are covered in The Letort: A Limestone Legacy, a new book published by the Central Pennsylvania Conservancy and compiled and edited by Klimkos.

“The Letort is the quintessential limestone stream found in the limestone-based valleys of Pennsylvania,” said Klimkos, who compiled and edited the 106-page book, and wrote in the forward: “It is the reason that James LeTort settled in the area. The water was clean and plentiful – and it made good beer and whiskey. It still does. The stream also provided power for grist mills and other industrial uses. The town of Carlisle sprang up around the stream and it was important to the community; sometimes for good reasons and sometimes for bad reasons.”

cover of the new book, The Letort
The Letort: A Limestone Legacy, a new book published by the Central Pennsylvania Conservancy and compiled and edited by Mike Klimkos.

“It was on the Letort that Vince Marinaro did his research and began a new chapter in fly fishing when he published his groundbreaking “A Modern Dry Fly Code” in 1950. Marinaro is one of the legends of the Letort profiled by other, current legends in the book. Others are Charles Fox, “Dean of the Letort,” and Ed Shenk.”

Klimkos, who is the former editor of the “Mid Atlantic Fly Fishing Guide”, has pulled together an in-depth section on research and monitoring of the stream and a comprehensive Letort timeline starting at 1720.

“It is important to remember the history of this stream, so we know where we are going in the future,” he said. “The Letort is perhaps one of the most historic trout streams in America.”

Mike will have copies of the book available to purchase at our Meeting. Proceeds from this book will be used to support the purchase of land along the Letort, by the Central Pennsylvania Conservancy, particularly the 30-acre parcel on the east branch at the headwaters, which functioned as a watercress farm since the 1880s and contains the southern trailhead of the Letort Nature Trail.

Hope to see you on the 11th!