Climbers Run is a small stream in the southwest corner of Lancaster County, which holds stocked trout as well as a modest population of wild trout.
DTU originally became involved because the stream had become severely degraded where it passed through two Amish farms. Fallen trees caused the stream to erode new channels. The stream was relocated to its original channel in two places and erosion protection measures and trout habitat structures put into effect.
DTU partnered for the first time with the US Corps of Engineers, the PA Department of Environmental Protection, the PA Fish & Boat Commission, the US Fish & Wildlife Service & the Lancaster County Conservation District to accomplish this task. Work has been completed on 2 farms, with more work projected for a third farm and the old “Camp Snyder” further upstream.
In 1996 and 1998 the Conowingo was listed as an impaired stream by the Commonwealth of PA, based on the TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) carried by the stream. PA DEP studies showed excessive amounts of sediment, nutrients, organic enrichment and low dissolved oxygen levels.
In 2005, DTU hired Rettew Associates to study the stream and develop a plan to rectify these issues. Completed in 2006, the plan identified 126 sites on the stream and its tributaries where DTU could work to address the problems effecting the stream.
We began with 4 pilot projects so landowners and neighbors could see what we could accomplish in our restoration work. Tanglewood Golf Course, a property upstream of Cardinal Road where a warmwater pond was in danger of being breeched, and a farm upstream of Spring Valley Road were 3 of these and are the basis of the slides shown here.
We are working from the headwaters downstream, typically completing 3 or 4 sites a year. It is obvious that this will be a long-term project lasting several decades. but we are committed to the cause and with the help of landowners, watershed associations, Lancaster Conservation District, Commonwealth and federal agencies and a host of volunteers, we leave a better cold water resource and rising trout in our wake.
Donegal Spring Creek
The headwaters of Donegal Spring Creek emerge in a meadow where work had been done in the past. Unfortunately the stream flows so slowly in this section that the work was not as effective as hoped and the stream had once again backed up into the meadow.
DTU partnered with the PA Fish & Boat Commission and the Donegal Fish & Conservation Association to bring the stream once again back into its natural bed and add valuable habitat structure.
This map will give you an overview of our work on the Donegal watershed.
The Valley Lea Project
Fishing Creek on the Valley Lea Riding Club’s property.
DTU’s Project on Segloch Run
Segloch Run is a small but high quality trout stream with one of Lancaster County’s last populations of native brook trout. Unfortunately it had eroded its banks.
In cooperation with the Segloch Run/Furnace Run Watershed Alliance, DTU joined with the PA Turnpike Commission, the PA Fish & Boat Commission and Lancaster Conservation District to add in-stream and bank structures and plant trees to protect this wonderful stream.
Peters Creek Project
Peters Creek was identified by the PA Fish & Boat Commission as supporting a population of wild brown trout. In 2017 DTU partnered with US Fish & Wildlife to install a number of structures to provide habitat for those trout and reduce erosion issues on the lower part of the creek near its mouth on the Susquehanna River.
In the autumn of 2017, chapter members, assisted by Friends of Fishing Creek, a local Scout Troop, and a neighbor planted several hundred trees and shrubs to further enhance the stream.