What's Hot and What's Not™
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26 April 2017
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H2O Conditions
Fishing conditions, Techniques, and Hatches

Baum Lake

Clear, mid 40s, lake level is normal.

Fishing is good. Best fishing is from 11am to dusk with fish rising to midges followed by BWO in the afternoon. Also look for green drakes and march browns late in the day. Start the day fishing a dry/dropper combo of a big mayfly supporting a smaller midge pupa. Most of the fish will eat the dropper. As the hatch progresses and fish start rising, use a sparkle dun with an emerger dropper. Some rises are very subtle. Stripping streamers along the weed beds are hooking larger browns.

Lake woolly buggers/streamers J Fair wiggle tail (olive, brown, burnt orange) BH woolly bugger (black, olive, brown), crystal bugger, mini bugger black/olive, seal bugger (rust, olive, black), hale bopp leach (brown, olive), Mack’s bugger, bunny leach (white), chub minnow (#6-12). BWO/Baetis emerger/dries (Listed elsewhere in report). BWO nymphs (Listed elsewhere in report). Midge pupa (Listed elsewhere in report).

Light fishing pressure. CDAG pg 34

Deer Creek (above Elam Campground down to Ishi Wilderness)

Slight color, low to mid 40s F, high with runoff but should be fishable above Elam and the Meadow.

Fishing should be fair. Best fishing should be during the afternoon once the sun has warmed the water. Nymphing with a small stonefly nymph and a prince nymph will produce. Look for sparse hatches of BWO’s and stoneflies. If there are no hatches try fishing an attractor dry. Hatches should improve with warmer weather. Look for easier wading flows upstream of Alder Campground and through the meadow above Elam. Trout stocked above the falls.

Attractor dries irresistible adams, parachute light cahill, Rio Grande trude, Pink & lime trude, yellow humpy, parachute adams, hippie stomper, royal coachman, crystal stimulator, renegade, royal wulff, grey wulff, pink cahill, light cahill, royal coachman, para wulff, (#10-18).Mayfly nymphs (listed elsewhere in report). Beadhead nymphs (listed elsewhere in report).

Expect moderate fishing pressure. Access off Hwy 32 from Deer Creek Bridge to Hwy 36. CDAG pg 42/43.

Fall River (Cal Trout access to Spring Creek Rd)

Clear, good flows, mid 40s F, few weeds starting to show.

Fishing should be good. Best fishing will be from late morning to mid-afternoon. Slack line nymph with PMD, midge pupa, and BWO nymphs under an indicator. As the day warms, look for a few rusty spinners late morning. Watch for a sparse PMD hatch in the afternoon. Tip: Key to catching fish on Fall River with nymphs and dry flies is a dead drift. Make sure to use enough slack during the drift. Streamer fishing with a sinking line will produce fish. Swing soft hackles pre-hatch with a slow swing. Expect the dry fly fishing to improve with warmer air and water temps.

BWO/Baetis emerger/dries Brook's KD dun, fluttering mayfly cripple BWO, BWO cripple, BWO captive dun, Brooks CDC dun baetis, hackle stacker BWO, loopwing paradun BWO, parachute BWO, twilight baetis dun day-glo. PMD nymphs BH flash back pheasant tails, Kyle's super flash PMD, Mercer's micro mayfly (brown), Black AP nymph, dark lord, Burk’s crystal HBI, flashy PT (#14-18) Woolly buggers Krystal bugger, beadhead mini-leech, Argentina bugger, J Fair’s wiggle tail, marabou leech (#8-12). Midge pupa glass bead midge (red, black), crystal dip, disco midge, brassie, desert storm, zebra midge (rust, black), WD40 (olive, chocolate) (#18-22).

Expect light to moderate fishing pressure. Pram with electric motor needed. Only public access is from Cal Trout. CDAG pg 35.

Frank’s Tract & San Joaquin Delta (including Mildred, San Joaquin River, and nearby sloughs)

2-3 feet visibility, mid to high 50s F.

Fishing is fair to good. Recent wind has made fishing a challenge. When the wind is down fishing is good. Stripers can be found on ledges and points of islands especially on the San Joaquin. Fishing is best on a moving tide. Stripping whistlers, flashtail clousers on a fast sinking shooting head will get the fly down. Be sure to pause between retrieves. Topwater action in the evening if wind is down. Couple more weeks and they will be gone until fall.

Striper patterns Flashtail clousers and whistlers in chartreuse/white, pink/white, all white, and black (2/0-3/0), pearly poppers (red/yellow, green/yellow), gurglers, crease fly.

Boat needed - rentals are available at Sugar Barge Marina on Bethel Island. Moderate to heavy fishing pressure. CDAG pg. 72, 73.

Hat Creek (PH#2 to fish barrier)

Green, low to mid 40s F, good flow.

Fishing should be good. Fishing should be consistent throughout the day. Nymphing with a small BWO or PMD nymph with a midge pupa dropper should catch fish. Try a stonefly nymph in the PH#2 riffle. Look for a few PMD’s or BWO hatching midday in the slicks with fish working the dries. Look for hatches of March browns, green drakes and maybe a few salmonflies. Expect hatches to improve in coming weeks.

Golden stonefly nymphs jumbo john, Poxyback golden stone nymph, Mercer's poxyquill golden stone, beadhead twenty incher, copper back, Burglar stone golden, tungsten golden stone (#8-12), 2 bit golden stone. BWO/Baetis emerger/dries Brook's KD dun, fluttering mayfly cripple BWO, BWO cripple, BWO captive dun, Brooks CDC dun baetis, hackle stacker BWO, loopwing paradun BWO, parachute BWO, twilight baetis dun day-glo. Midge pupa (listed elsewhere in report).

Expect large crowds at the PH#2 riffle. To escape the crowds, try fishing below Carbon Flat or the Hwy 299 bridge. CDAG pg 34.

Hot Creek

Off color to clear, low to mid 40s F, 43 cfs.

Fishing is fair. Cold temps are making trout sluggish but hatches of BWO and midges will get trout feeding during the warmest part of the day. Fishing an extended body bwo using a delicate downstream drift will hook some of these educated trout. Switch between BWO dries, emergers and a dry with a nymph dropper to find what the fish will take. Indicator nymphing with small mayfly nymphs and midges are productive when fish are not rising.

Midge pupa glass bead midge (red, black), crystal dip, disco midge, brassie, desert storm, zebra midge (rust, black), WD40 (olive, chocolate) WD50 tungsten (olive/wine) (#18-22). BWO/Baetis emerger/dries Brook's KD dun, fluttering mayfly cripple BWO, BWO cripple, BWO captive dun, Brooks CDC dun baetis, hackle stacker BWO, loopwing paradun BWO, parachute BWO, twilight baetis dun day-glo. BWO/Baetis nymphs (listed elsewhere in report).

Expect moderate fishing pressure on weekends. Access at upper parking lot and fish downstream to the hot springs. CDAG pg 77.

Oroville Lake

Slight tint, mid to high 60’s F.

Fishing is good. Water temps have increased, and bass are pre-spawn and aggressive. Fish back bays in order to block out the wind. Best fishing access is by boat, with moderate fishing pressure as bass become more aggressive to take flies. Be sure to fish edges, structure such as rocks, and logs to locate spotted and smallmouth bass. Look to target bass sitting on spawning beds. Stripping a weighted fly along the shore will trigger a strike. Suspend balanced leeches, tui-chubs, and minnow patterns under an indicator. Make sure to pause between strips. Another method is using a sink tip with weighted flies in order to reach deeper water along ledges. Guided trips available through Fish First Fly Shop!

Bass subsurface flies Hogan puff-claw dad, bluegill, Wyatt's rattle shad, Wyatt's rattle rainbow, Cutter’s goblin, rag sculpin, zonker, woolhead sculpin, blossom, Double bunny, blossom,  Cowen’s coyote, Whitlock’s scorpion, garage door opener (rust, chartreuse), Burk's bass flash, Clouser Darter, flexi-tail bunny, baby smallmouth (#2-10), Balanced Leaches.

Expect light pressure with a lot of lake to fish. Boat access is best. Access at Lime Saddle and Bidwell Marina. CDAG pg.51

Owens River (upper)

Off color, 87 cfs as of 4/20, low 40’s

Fishing is Fair. Cold turbid water and fishing pressure is making it tough. Strip streamers around ledges and nymph deep slow water to get some action. Trout are nervous due to low water so use stealth.

Woolly buggers Krystal bugger, beadhead mini-leech, Argentina bugger, J Fair’s wiggle tail, marabou leech (#8-12). Beadhead nymphs (listed elsewhere in report).

Fishing pressure on weekends. CDAG. 87

Pyramid Lake (NV)

Slightly tinted, high 40’s to low 50’s.

Fishing is good. Reports of 10+ lb fish being caught consistently through out the day. Cover water to find pods of trout cruising the shoreline. Cold, windy days and churned up water are producing huge Lohanton Cutts cruising the shallows aggressively eating blood midges flashy beadhead nymphs and balanced leaches under an indicator. Tandem flies that are tossed around by choppy water will pick up cruising fish. Tip: Trout will sometimes hug the bank. Be sure to look for cruisers behind your ladder. Another popular method is using a fast sinking shooting head to get pyramid buggers down along the ledge where they are cruising.

Pyramid Flies woolly worms, Pyramid buggers (black/purple, chartreuse/white, Olive, black), Pyramid snail (black/purple, chartreuse/white, Olive, black). (#8-12) Blood Midge Pupae bead brain blood midge, desert storm. WD 40 red, red brassie, disco midge red, red and copper zebra midge (#10-14). Attractor  nymphs (listed elsewhere in report).

Expect heavy fishing pressure. Access at Sutcliff, Pelican, windless. NAG pg 34.

Other Reports

Trout Opener Prediction Trout season opens Saturday April 29th. Huge snowpack and big flows in a lot of our rivers and streams. Still plenty of options but the best is yet to come. Key on fishing the warmest part of the day to find the best hatches. Good luck. Please Call or email us with your results.  Mac@FishFirst.com Crowley Lake Should be a good opener. Iced out and docks are in. Suspending midges a foot off the bottom is the name of the game. Expect crowds on the opener. Davis Lake (Portola) Mostly iced out. Currently at 109% capacity. Access is tough with lots of deep mud on the roads. Manzanita Lake (Lassen) Officially iced out! Fishing midges on a long leader with a super slow retrieve or targeting rising trout with midges and baetis is productive. Best fished with pram or drift boat. McCloud River is flowing 1,050 at Ash camp. Too high to fish with runoff. Reports of a road closure on the road to Ah-Di-Na and the conservancy. Mill Creek is flowing at 650 cfs at Los Molinos with water temperatures at 52 degrees. Too high to fish right now but stoneflies and beadhead nymph can produce some nice trout along the edges when flows recede around 300 cfs. North Fork of the Feather below Beldon. It’s going to be a while. Currently flowing at over 6,000 cfs all the way down to Lake Oroville.

Other Reports Feather River (Hwy 70 bridge to Gridley) It’s going to be a while. Currently flowing above 30,000 cfs. Off color and dangerous! North Fork Feather (Butte County) It’s going to be a while. Currently flowing at over 6,000 cfs all the way down to Lake Oroville. Lower Stanislaus River is roaring over 3,139 cfs at Orange Blossom bridge and currently unfishable. Pit River #3,#4, #5 (below Lake Britton to Big Bend) Currently 513 cfs below Pit 3 dam. High but could be fishable in some spots. Nymphing stoneflies along the edges and stripping streamers in backwater, pools and seams can produce. Flows are over 3,000 cfs below Pit 4 and over 4,000 cfs at Bend. Putah Creek is fishing poor. Flows are currently 736 cfs. Possible to fish the edges but difficult to land fish in high flows. Sacramento River, Lower (below Keswick Reservoir) Currently over 30,000 but dropping to 7,000 in another week. Producing some nice fish! Not wadeable. Best access is with a drift boat and a talented fly fishing guide. Sucker eggs have been producing. Stonefly nymphs are starting to produce. Trinity River – Currently at unfishable at 10,900 cfs below Lewiston dam. Sacramento River, Upper (above Lake Shasta) Currently at 2,650 cfs at delta. Dangerous wading but nymphing along the edges in slow water will find trout with stoneflies and march brown nymphs. No fish rising with high cold water. Truckee River (Trout Creek to Stateline) is poor. Currently 2,110 cfs in Truckee and 4,610 cfs below Boca. Reports of some big browns on streamers in backwater. Yuba River, Lower (near Highway 20 Bridge) Currently flowing at 7,707 cfs below Englebright. Water temperature is 49 degrees. No good reports. Walker River, East Fork (below Bridgeport Reservoir) Water temperatures are low and fish are sluggish in the morning. Currently at 421 cfs. It’s high but fishable in spots. Access is difficult.  Fishing will improve with warmer weather.

River Striper Report-(Sacramento River) Good reports from conventional anglers in high flows and turbid water. Fly bite with whistlers and clousers should be great with so much backwater opened up with crazy high flows. Going to be a great year fishing smallmouth in backwater and oxbows. (Feather River) Flows are high and water is turbid. Reports of conventional anglers around Boyd’s Pump and Star Bend. (Yuba) No Reports.

Shad Report No reports yet… warm weather and high flows will bring them up river. Should be a good year with higher flows and colder water. Fishing a 225-300 grain fast sink shooting head with Rio’s Grip Shooter running line will hook shad on the swing, stripped in, or jigged off the back of a boat in slower back eddies where shad can find relief from the current.

WH&WN™ FREE flyfishing report would not be possible without the help of: Craig Nielsen/Shasta Trout Guide Service, Jordan Romney (Putah Fly Fishing Guide), Victor Babbit/Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters/Tahoe, Jerry/The Troutfitter/Mammoth Lakes, Ted Fay Flyshop/Dunsmuir, Greg/Sweeny’s sport shop, Andy/Kiene's Fly Shop/Sacramento, Richard Hardy-Davis report, Ken’s Sporting Goods/Scott Freeman-EW report. Special thanks to all the WH&WN™ subscribers who have submitted their fishing reports for the fisheries listed in WH&WN, you help keep us honest, accurate, and up-to-date.

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