Little Fishing Creek

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Little Fishing Creek looking downstream in Millville.

Little Fishing Creek is a 22.3-mile-long (35.9 km) tributary of Fishing Creek in Lycoming and Columbia counties, Pennsylvania in the United States.[1] Communities that the creek flows through include Jackson Township, Pine Township, Greenwood Township, and Mount Pleasant Township, among others.

Little Fishing Creek joins Fishing Creek 3.86 miles (6.21 km) upstream of the Susquehanna River, near the town of Bloomsburg.

Course[edit]

The mouth of Little Fishing Creek (left)

Little Fishing Creek begins in Lycoming County near the border between it and Columbia County. The creek almost immediately enters Jackson Township, in Columbia County. It flows southeast along the western border of Jackson Township and then turns southwest, following the border, and passes Huckleberry Ridge.[2] The creek then leaves Jackson Township and continues flowing along the border between Pine Township and Greenwood Township. After several miles, it starts flowing parallel to Pennsylvania Route 42 receives the tributary Branch Run. The creek then passes by the western edge of Millville and continues flowing south roughly parallel to Pennsylvania Route 42. Shortly downstream of Millville, it crosses Pennsylvania Route 254. Several miles downstream, it passes Eyers Grove, where it receives the tributary Spruce Run and leaves behind Greenwood Township.[3] The creek then flows along the western border of Mount Pleasant Township and continues to flow alongside Pennsylvania Route 42. After some distance, the creek passes Mordansville and reaches the southern border of Mount Pleasant Township several miles later.[4] Little Fishing Creek enters Fishing Creek at the border between Mount Pleasant Township and Bloomsburg.[5]

Little Fishing Creek joins Fishing Creek 3.86 miles (6.21 km) upstream of its mouth.[6]

Tributaries[edit]

All but one of the nine tributaries of the Little Fishing Creek upstream of the United States Geological Survey stream gauge empty into it from the left.[7] The creek has a number of small tributaries in ravines in Pine Township.[8]

Hydrology[edit]

At Millville, the "caution stage" for flooding is 7 feet (2.1 m) and the flood stage is 10 feet (3.0 m). At Eyers Grove, the "caution stage" is is 5 feet (1.5 m), except in areas with levees, where it is 7 feet (2.1 m). The flood stage is 7 feet (2.1 m) in areas without levees and 10 feet (3.0 m) in areas with them.[9]

The annual recharge levels of Little Fishing Creek at Eyers Grove ranged from 6 to 23 inches (15 to 58 cm) between 1941 and 1957. March, April, and February produced the most recharge of any month on average, contributing 18.2 percent, 13.7 percent, and 12.5 percent of the annual recharge, respectively. August produced the least recharge of any month on average, contributing 1.6 percent of the annual recharge.[10]

Geography and geology[edit]

One type of soil series found in the vicinity of Little Fishing Creek is the Middlebury Series. This soil series ranges from deep and fairly well-drained to poorly-drained alluvial soil. It consists of Tioga soils and Holly soils.[11] All of the rock in the creek's watershed upstream of the United States Geological Survey's stream gauge is shale or sandstone.[7] A fairly narrow band of rock of the Hamilton Group is located near the creek. Rock outcroppings of the Chemung Formation are visible in Hemlock Township, approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) upstream of Fishing Creek.[12]

Little Fishing Creek has an elevation of 485 feet (148 m). This part of the creek is on the Bloomsburg topographical map of the United States Geological Survey.[13]

The Greenwood Valley runs between Little Fishing Creek and Green Creek. Additionally, the Milton axis crosses Little Fishing Creek in Pine Township.[12] A steep ridge known as the "Divide" separates the creek's watershed from that of Chillisquaque Creek.[14]

Watershed[edit]

The watershed of Little Fishing Creek is fairly long compared to its width. It has an area of 68.1 square miles.[6] The drainage basin area of the creek upstream of the stream gauge at Eyers Grove is 56.5 square miles.[10] Most of the watershed is in Columbia County. However, a substantial part of the northwestern portion of the watershed is in Lycoming County and the northernmost part of it is in Sullivan County.[7]

Much of the watershed of Little Fishing Creek upstream of the stream gauge on it is forest. There is also agricultural land, especially in the northwestern and southern parts of the watershed and small areas of developed land in the watershed's southern section.[15] 64.5 percent of the land in the watershed upstream of Eyers Grove is forested land and 34.7 percent is agricultural land. 0.7 percent of the land is developed and the remaining 0.2 percent has other uses.[10]

History and industries[edit]

It is likely that John Eves likely settled in the valley of Little Fishing Creek before 1774 and possibly as early as 1769.[12] In 1778, Moses Van Campen led a scouting part past from For Wheeler to Chillisquaque Creek via Little Fishing Creek.[16] The headwaters of Little Fishing Creek were uninhabited considerably after the valleys of Greenwood and Jerseytown were inhabited.[12]

Several covered bridges cross Little Fishing Creek. The Creasyville Covered Bridge (formerly known as the Derr Bridge) is a Queenpost truss covered bridge that was built over Little Fishing Creek in 1881 for a cost of $301.25. It is 44.5 feet (13.6 m) long and crosses the creek north of Millville and Iola. The Jud Christie Covered Bridge No. 95, which is also a Queenpost truss bridge, crosses the creek between Jackson Township and Pine Township. It is 53 feet (16 m) long and was built in 1876 for $239.00. The Sam Eckman Covered Bridge No. 92 crosses the creek between Pine Township and Greenwood Township and was built in 1876 for $498.00. It is 66 feet (20 m) long.[17]

John Mordan settled on Little Fishing Creek in Mount Pleasant Township in the 1790s.[18] He also built the first sawmill in Mount Pleasant Township on Little Fishing Creek.[19] When numerous other settlers arrived in the vicinity of Mordan's mill, the area became known as Mordansville.[18] In the past, there was also an obscure gristmill on an island on the creek.[19] The Catawissa Railroad historically went up the valley of the creek.[20]

Little Fishing Creek serves as a water supply source for nearby communities.[11] Slate has been quarried on the creek in the past and limestone has also been produced there.[12]

Biology[edit]

Ruffed grouse occur in large numbers on Little Fishing Creek north of Iola. They also occur on Spruce Run, a tributary of the creek.[11]

Little Fishing Creek is designated as an Exceptional Value Stream from its source downstream to the mouth of Lick Run in the community of Sereno.[8]

Little Fishing Creek has a significant riparian buffer throughout most of Jackson Township.[8]

2.4 miles (3.9 km) of Little Fishing Creek are considered impaired due to pathogens of an unknown source.[21]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Google Maps, 2014, retrieved June 9, 2014 
  2. ^ USGS (1979), jackson.jpg, retrieved May 5, 2014 
  3. ^ USGS (1979), greenwoo.jpg, retrieved May 5, 2014 
  4. ^ USGS (1979), orangmpl.jpg, retrieved May 5, 2014 
  5. ^ USGS (1979), blomscot.jpg, retrieved May 5, 2014 
  6. ^ a b Pennsylvania Gazetteer of Streams, November 2, 2001, retrieved June 9, 2014 
  7. ^ a b c United States Geological Survey (January 4, 2013), Geology Map 
  8. ^ a b c The Pennsylvania Science Office of The Nature Conservancy (2004), Columbia County Natural Areas Inventory 2004, retrieved June 10, 2014 
  9. ^ GENERAL FLOODING INFORMATION FOR FISHING CREEK AND LITTLE FISHING CREEK, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  10. ^ a b c United States Geological Survey (January 4, 2013), Estimates of Mean-Monthly & Annual Ground-Water Recharge Little Fishing Creek at Eyers Grove: 01539500, retrieved June 10, 2014 
  11. ^ a b c Paul H. Parrish, United States Soil Conservation Service (1967), Soil survey, Columbia County, Pennsylvania: Report, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  12. ^ a b c d e J.H. Battle, ed. (1887), History of Columbia and Montour Counties, Pennsylvania, retrieved June 9, 2014 
  13. ^ Topographic Map Stream Features in Columbia County, Pennsylvania, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  14. ^ J.H. Beers (1915), Historical and Biographical Annals of Columbia and Montour Counties, Pennsylvania, p. 243, retrieved June 30, 2014 
  15. ^ United States Geological Survey (January 4, 2013), Land Use Map, retrieved June 10, 2014 
  16. ^ Full text of "A history of Columbia County, Pennsylvania", archive.org, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  17. ^ Columbia County, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  18. ^ a b Mordansville, retrieved June 10, 2014 
  19. ^ a b Mount Pleasant Township, Columbia County, Pennsylvania, Bits of Historic Interest of Mt. Pleasant, retrieved June 8, 2014 
  20. ^ Henry Schenck Tanner (1840), A Description of the Canals and Rail Roads of the United States, retrieved June 10, 2014 
  21. ^ Columbia County, Pennsylvania CHESAPEAKE BAY TRIBUTARY STRATEGY, February 2005, retrieved June 10, 2014