Conococheague Creek

Located in Washington County

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Conococheague Creek2.jpgPhysical/ Habitat Description - Conococheague Creek is one of the largest tributaries to the upper Potomac River. ​From its origin northeast of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, it meanders south through Maryland for roughly 22 miles before joining the Potomac River near Williamsport, MD. Occurring in the Ridge and Valley physiographic province, the Conococheague Creek is largely influenced by karst geological features. The creek has a low gradient with a very shallow profile. Bottom substrate consists of limestone bedrock, cobble, and pea gravel. Agricultural practices are the primary land use surrounding the creek. Due to the productivity and shallow profile, submerged aquatic vegetation typically clogs the stream channel during the summer months. The vegetation can make floating the river challenging at times, but provides excellent cover for fish during low flows and with the shallow channel.

Conococheague Creek1.jpgFishery - The Conococheague Creek supports a warmwater fishery for smallmouth bass, redbreast sunfish, rockbass, common carp, and channel catfish throughout the Maryland portion. An old mill dam (Kemp’s Mill) exists just over 3 miles upstream of the confluence with the mainstem Potomac. Downstream of the dam, muskellunge, walleye, and flathead catfish utilize the creek and are occasionally encountered by anglers. The creek supports a low diversity but high-density macroinvertebrate population that promotes exceptional conditions for the trophic ecology of this waterbody.

Conococheague Creek3.jpgAccess - Float trips are the most popular methods of fishing Conococheague Creek. A public soft launch is available at the Wilson Bridge Park and walk-in access is available at Kemps Mill Park. The lower stretch of the creek from the Kemps Mill Dam downstream to its confluence with the Potomac River can be accessed by traveling upstream from the River Bottom Access in Williamsport. Access through private property to the creek has traditionally been available at Wishard Road, Cress Pond Road, and Kemps Mill Road just south of the bridge. Access is no longer available at the private Kemps Mill Dam​​ due to abuse of the privilege granted by the landowner (vandalism, fires, trespassing, trash, etc.) Please be very respectful of private property and avoid posted areas.