The Youghiogheny River’s 1,764-square-mile watershed embraces remote mountain wilds and the urban streets of McKeesport. Its history traces from pristine to polluted disgrace to recovering recreational mecca. The Yough is in some ways western Pennsylvania’s microcosmic waterway.
To call attention to the river’s recovery and regional importance, the Chestnut Ridge Chapter of Trout Unlimited and its partners, the Mountain Watershed Association and Fayette County Conservation District, have invited biologists, scholars, anglers, boaters, elected leaders and other Yough enthusiasts to a conference focused on the waterway’s assets and threats. The Youghiogheny River Symposium will be held June 24 at the Penn State Fayette Eberly Campus near Connellsville.
“The Youghiogheny was once one of the most heavily polluted rivers in the state,” said Chestnut Ridge TU president Dale Kotowski. “But the hard work of a lot of people have brought the Yough back to where it is making a huge contribution to our environment and economy. It now adds immeasurably to this region’s appeal to visitors, and to residents’ quality of life.”