Fishing Report 5-23-09

Upper Sacramento River

Fishing Conditions


Flows are falling rapidly and the river is becoming fishable from top to bottom.  Still not many places to cross down river but that will be changing in the next few weeks if trends continue.  We are a bit surprised that the warm weather hasn’t got more of the big bugs moving as much as we would like but they arrive perfectly on their own schedule each season and wishing doesn’t bring them any sooner.  Nymphing is the norm with mostly caddis and small mayflies with the bite picking up later in the day.  A few slicks in the evening having enough Tibialis and/or PED’s to bring fish to the surface.  A few Salmonflies about, perhaps enough this year to create the first real fishable hatch since the spill? Thunderstorms predicted this week have begun and hopefully will draw some big Mayflies out of hiding while the warm weather will get the Goldenstones to follow.



Water Conditons


Flows have been dropping over 100 cfs per day and clarity is near perfect.  Current flows at Delta are just above 1,000 cfs and dropping.  Starting to find places to cross the river and some smaller runs are becoming fishable.  Water temps are in the fifties, though colder upstream than down.  Conditions are perfect for the Upper Sac to really turn on.



Flies


Plan on prospecting with Prince Nymphs and dark and Golden Stone imitations with small droppers including Copper Johns, Micromays, Pheasant Tails, Iron Sallies and small caddis patterns in 14-18’s. Pack your box with Rogue Foam Stones and Sofa Pillows in orange (#4-6) and yellow (#8-10), and some big Paraduns and Mayfly cripples to imitate Green Drakes, Flavs and Brown Drakes.  Temps are getting to the point that streamers are a good option for those so inclined.



McCloud River

Fishing Conditions


Flows from tribs have receded and the river is coming into prime condition just in time for the hatches to take off and this will be the place to be!  The Upper McCloud has become a dry fly zone for small natives and hatchery clones as nearly all the large wild fish have migrated downstream or into someone’s freezer.  The campground at  Ah Di Nah is now open though it has been full on weekends.   Mostly a nymphing affair with a few opportunities for dries in the evenings.  With the hatches arriving dries will become increasingly effective. 


Water Conditons


Flows are dropping steadily and more river crossings are opening up.  Water temps down low are in the mid fifties but still in the forties upstream so you’ll want to get your flies right on a fish’s nose. The Upper River has returned to normal flows and is stocked so expect crowds especially with campgrounds full on weekends.


Flies


Plan on nymphing but look for opportunities for dry fly action midday and towards evening. Big bugs will become increasingly important, a few Salmonflies are about and fish have found our imitations.   Be prepared with small flies as well as large. We like to offer one of each when nymphing and tie droppers off our big dries. Try Stimis in orange or yellow #6-10, hanging Copper Johns, Iron Sallies, PT’s, Micromays and your favorite caddis Pupa in #14-18 off the bend. Use these small nymphs in combination with Poxyback Goldenstones, Rubberlegs, and Princes when exploring with an indicator or high sticking.



Pit River

Fishing Conditions


Conditions on the Pit couldn’t be much better, nymphing the fast water during the day and setting up on a run with clouds of caddis in the evening has been producing some epic experiences.  Unfortunately the word is out and the river has been crowded at times.  Plan on walking to find fresh water.  Flows are at or below normal and water clarity is fair and improving making dry fly fishing increasingly productive. We are finding fish nymphing but droppers off of dries have also produced. Small patterns have been out fishing large ones but the larger fish often prefer the bigger bites. Streamer fishing has been superb.  This is a gem for hearty anglers and serves as a great tune up for the more technical fishing on the Upper Sac and McCloud where spring hatches arrive a bit later.



Water Conditons


Flows are near optimum and currently at or a bit below the norm for the season.  Water clarity is about the norm, perhaps a bit less. All reaches are fishing well.



Flies


Prospect with two nymph rigs in fast water. Prince Nymphs, PT’s, Birdsnests, Rubberleg Stones, Golden Stones, Copper Johns and Yellow Sallies. Try mixing and matching, one large, one small, one dark, one light. Pull a large streamer in olive or black and hang on. Dry fly fishing (add droppers)  continues to improve with increased hatches. Try Elk Hair Caddis or EC Caddis for the evening blizzard. Bring Salmonflies, Goldenstones, Green & Brown Drake dries and keep your fingers crossed!



Lower Sacramento River

Fishing Conditions


PMD’s have become a staple on the Lower Sac this spring with some Tibialis as well.   Sunshine and warm days has got some Hydropsche going as well.  We’ve even had some dry fly bites in the evening as the water clarity has improved.  The river has been fishing well from Bonnieview all the way to Bend.  Cypress Street Bridge construction has closed boat passage at the overpass.



Water Conditons


Releases at Keswick are at about 9,000 with no scheduled changes. Flows downsteam at Bend Bridge are running a bit higher but overall are about 10-20% below the norm. Still a tad off color for this time of year.

Walk and wade opportunities are slim at 9,000.   Boat passage at

Cypress Street Bridge is currently closed due to construction.



Flies


Small nymphs are the norm. Try your favorite PMD nymphs along with various Pheasant tails and Micromays in #14 – 18″s. Prince Nymphs, Copper Johns & Ironsallies also find fish. Caddis patterns such as Fox Poopahs & Birdsnests are becoming increasingly productive as the warm weather sparks caddis hatches. For two and three fly rigs try adding an egg, Super Floss Rubberleg or Microspawn.




Hat Creek

Fishing Conditions


Fishing on Hat Creek as been quite good.  When hatches aren’t popping fish are willing to grab nymphs under an indicator or dropped off of dries.  There have been sparse afternoon hatches of PMD’s, Eporus and even some Green Drakes (on cloudy days), with a few Salmonflies showing but not yet building enough to get the fish grabby.  The evening caddis bite has not been consistent but if you hit it right it can be great.  The Hat is in great condition, the best we’ve seen in a few seasons.  Look for the fishing to improve as hatches build and the crowds diminish as other local streams come into shape.



Water Conditons


Hat Creek, being low gradient with spring creek conditions does not receive the runoff other local streams experience. It is one of the few rivers that can be fishable during big storms. If you want to avoid the circus on the Powerhouse Riffle, fish other access points, seek out other area waters and/or have a go midweek.



Flies


The attraction here is the big bugs of spring, Salmonflies, Goldenstones, Flavs, and Mahoganies but your most likely top water action will come on PMD’s, Eporus and evening caddis. A few Salmonflies are showing but not as many as we might like, not a bad fly to hang a nymph below. Nymphing the fast riffles can provide some action during non hatch periods. Parachute and Paradun PMD’s & Sulphur emergers and cripples #14-16, plan on changing flies often for fish than can be selective. Green Drake Paraduns & Cripples, EC Caddis & Elk Hair Caddis #14-16 consider adding a pupa or mayfly nymph as a dropper. Salmonfly and Goldenstone patterns will become increasingly effective as the hatches develop. Not a bad idea to have a few ants and beetles tucked in the box just in case.


Klamath River

klamath-fall

Fishing Conditions
Lots of caddis activity so hope for some topwater action though we’ve had better luck with droppers & nymphing rigs. Salmonflies have arrived but the fish are not yet looking up. Still a few very nice fish hanging around to go with the hatchery and wild juveniles. Some recently released Salmon smolts attack small nymphs with abandon making it difficult to make a clean cast.  Water temps have increased to the lower 60’s and will continue to rise with more hot weather in the forecast.



Water Conditions
Flows have been steady at 1400 cfs. We expect this to be an optimum flow for the big Salmonfly Hatch starting any day. This is the mean flow and very fishable. Plan on drifting as wading is still limited.

Water temps are in the lower 60’s.



Flies


Flies for the juveniles include small nymphs and caddis dries which may provide more action than some find desirable. Swing classic wets such as Skunks, Hiltons and similar dark bodied flies in sizes 6-10 for more grabs than seems reasonable. Salmonflies dries are on the way!


Trinity River


Trinty River Fishing Conditions


Releases on the Trinity have been dropping but are still nearly 2000 cfs! This will make the Trinity not only unfishable but dangerous. Come back after the whitewater folks have their fun.  Flows are scheduled to become fishable around the middle of June.



Water Conditons


Releases on the Trinity increased from 300 cfs to 4,000 cfs on May 1st!. They are scheduled to be slowly reduced until it becomes fishable around the middle of June.  Check to see that

Flows have dropped before venturing out.



Flies


Check back when conditions improve.

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