Fishing Reports

Current information on river flows, fishing conditions, fly selection, and closures for Northern California including the Upper and Lower Sacramento River, the Klamath River, the McCloud River, the Pit River, the Trinity River, and Hat Creek.
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Shasta Fly Fishing Guides Report: Clear cold water & great summer fishing!

RolandKlamathSpringSteelie There might be nothing better in fly fishing than casting a dry fly to rising trout on a cool summer evening with Mt. Shasta as a backdrop.  After a couple of weeks of hot weather, temps have dropped and flows on local freestone rivers are at summer time lows with solid hatches of caddis and mayflies.  As a result, dry fly fishing on the McCloud and Upper Sac have been outstanding, particularly in the evenings.  The Hex hatches on the Fall River and Lake Siskiyou have been phenomenal and nymphing on the Pit continues to produce some exceptional days.   The Stonefly hatch on the Klamath has concluded and we are scheduling folks for fall steelheading starting in September when water temps drop to a safe level to again practice catch and release. IMGP1598IMGP1582The McCloud has been one of our top destinations with Flows at a season low, having reached summer levels weeks ago with nearly all crossing spots open and wading at it's best.  We've been taking advantage of the conditions with several guests, casting dry and droppers to the far bank and pockets all day, followed by phenomenal fishing to risers during the evening hatch of Pale Evening Duns, Flavineas along with a Rusty Spinner fall.  The July 4th crowd is gone and particularly on weekdays you can find some solitude. Deb & Rus MossbraeGreg USac 003Flows on the Upper Sacramento River  have been at summertime norms for several weeks.  Springs on the upper river keep water temps low so the entire river remains very wadable and fishable all summer long.  Local guides Craig Nielsen, Rick Cox, Alan Blankenship, Wayne Eng and Fred Gordon have hosted several guests and found nymphing during the day continues to produce and the evening dry fly bite on Mayflies and lingering Stoneflies have been outstanding the last few weeks.  The fish are fat and happy as angling pressure has been noticeably light this season.  We have not yet seen the typical influx of Shasta Lake Rainbows moving into the lower river yet.  These feisty, hot fish average 14-18" and provide great sport, much like half pounder steelhead and we expect them to be showing up in our nets in the coming weeks. Jeremy with Fall River HawgHexagenia Dun a large bite for trophy trout Tom Peppas, Scott Saiki, Jason Cockrum, Jeremy Baker and George Durand report several guests are enjoying the evening Hex hatch on the Fall River which is moving up from the confluence of the Fall and Tule Rivers. This hatch allows us to nymph and swing emergers prior to the hatch and cast enormous Mayfly dries at last light to target the biggest fish of the season on the surface. Combine this action with some nymphing and casting drys to a morning PMD hatch and it makes for a very fulfilling day.  In most seasons we see the hatch continue through July and the first few weeks of August.  We still have some guide dates available, drop us a line if you have not yet experienced this amazing seasonal event. Local guide Alan Blankenship (aka The Pit Pirate) has been finding some fish on the Pit River as flows have dropped to the summer minimum.  Several guests have enjoyed outstanding days, catching chunky 'bows who have seen very few anglers this season.   Alan has some availability for hardy waders who have not yet sampled the bounty this fishery can provide. IMGP1630 The Lower Sacramento River has been a bit up and down lately as flows have been fluctuating, and we have had some windy days.  Flows and weather have tempered and the bite has taken off.  PMD's  and Hydropysche Caddis have been popping but day time temps have been a bit too much for most of us.  Cooler temps and steady flows should making the fishing as well as the catching more enjoyable in the coming weeks. IMGP1623photo 5photo 3Local headwater creeks have also provided some excellent action casting small dry flies for eager trout.  This is a perfect venue for kids, those new to the sport, and folks who want to relax and enjoy consistent action and the visual joy of watching small trout dart from the stream bottom to intercept their flies.  For some it can't get any better than this! BW6H3465We have concluded our spring stonefly hatch fishing on the Klamath for the season but still have some fall Steelhead dates available starting in September, including some special offerings at the incredible Scott River Lodge. Drop us a line if you are headed our way, we are always happy to share all we can whether you are seeking guide service or not.

A Guide’s Report: Fly Fishing in the Shadow of Shasta, May 2014

Paul McCloud dry fly RainbowWith low, ideal flows and perfect weather we are experiencing fantastic fly fishing in Northern California on all of our trout fisheries.   With the peak of our biggest hatches of the year just days away, we only expect the fishing to get better.  Salmonflies, Goldenstones, Mayflies big and small, as well as multiple hatches of caddis have been popping and with perfect weather in the forecast we expect this to only improve.   Wildflowers Tayler, McCloud Riverare in their full glory, with Dogwoods, Azaleas, Rhododenrons and Lilies lighting up the streamside vegetation.   We hope you can join us soon to wet a line, we feature the finest local guides in the north state and still have some availablility. IMGP1553IMGP1572IMGP1556The Lower Sacramento River continues to produce good numbers of trout and incredibly high quality Rainbows for anglers of all abilities.  Flows remain low, clear and steady, at 8,000 cfs, a bit below the norm of 10,000 for this time of the year.  The weather has been terrific with the forecast calling for clear and pleasantly warm weather which we expect will get the summertime caddis in full swing and provide wrenching grabs from hot healthy fish looking to put on some weight after completing their spawn.  Hatches have been sparse but steady with some lingering Pale Morning Duns and small caddis.  The river has been fishing from Caldwell to Red Bluff but boat ramps have been noticeably busier on weekends than weekdays. IMGP1559IMGP1578The Upper Sacramento is fishing well from top to bottom with ideal flows and our biggest and best hatches on the way.  Goldenstones have been out in good numbers and the fish are starting to look up.  A mixed caddis and mayfly hatch in the evening has produced some solid if not spectacular fishing and with steady warmer weather in the forecast we expect to see this action build.  Traffic on the Upper Sac has been very light on most days as this fishery is very under appreciated.  All techniques have been offering up fish provided you find the best water for each.  Try dries in the evening, fish dries and droppers or high stick pocket water all day and run indicators through classic runs morning and late in the day.  The water is at midsummer low levels and ultra clear so exercising maximum stealth is key. IMGP1566IMGP1567IMGP1574The McCloud River  has been about as good as it gets.  We are enjoying outstanding numbers of fish and while most have been on the smaller size, there have been enough fish in the teens each day to keep anglers challenged.  While conditions are exceptional and the fish are feasting on the plethora of bugs that are coming off, the river has seen considerable pressure since the opening of the season in April.  Campgrounds at Ash Camp and Ah Di Na have been near capacity on weekends but have been clearing nicely midweek.  Flows on the McCloud are very low and ultra clear so the fishing has become quite technical.  Stealth is paramount, fishing water that has seen less pressure also helps as does fishing good imitations that these trout don't see often.  Fly Fishers who know the river well and grasp this may catch dozens of fish a day, while those who are less experienced will find few. Even then experienced anglers will discover it is difficult to fool the larger, wary trout this river is famous for.  We have been enjoying this challenge and hope you do too! Jerri enjoys another lunkerCraig, Fall RiverFishing on the Fall River has been improving steadily with hatches building and the dry fly fishing taking form.  On days when the wind lays down the dry fly fishing has been good.  Otherwise swinging nymphs and streamers along with dead drifting nymphs has produced well.  The majority of fish have been on the smaller size but spawners are returning in increasing numbers and good fish are coming to the net most every day, though a few of the biggest do manage to still get away.  The river is in great shape and the weeds are filling in nicely.  Fall River is in much better condition for this time in the season than it has been in the past two years. Northern California Fly Fishing Guide George DurandJune will be your last opportunity to fish with George Durand as he will be retiring to a ranch in Idaho at the end of June.  If you have fished with George before you know what a great treat it is, if you haven't you owe it to yourself to grab a date.  George is the consummate gentleman and fly fishing pro as he has enjoyed as many successful days guiding on the Fall River, Lower Sac and Trinity as most anyone and has taught a good number of the younger guides in the area how it is best done.  George still has a few dates available to guide the Fall River or Lower Sac on June 3,4,5,9,18,19,20, 23 & 24th.  Contact us now so you don't miss out! 20140519_104629The Pit River has been smoking hot.  While Stoneflies and Mayflies will get grabbed Caddis have been coming off in clouds and the fish have been feasting.  We have some guide availability so if you have not experienced the new flow regime we recommend you schedule a date to learn the "new" river.  Nymphing with or without an indicator during the day has produced best with fish taking smaller bugs more often than the bigger bites but a few of our biggest fish have come on the larger stonefly patterns.  Get here now! P1010002Salmonfly dry fly and Klamath River steelieSending her backStoneflies on the Klamath River popped early last week and we expect the dry fly fishing to take off with the warm weather this week which should make  the egg laying adults available on the surface.  Water clarity has been an issue again this spring with visibility running up to about two and half feet this last week which is poor even for the Klamath.  The Klamath is not known for great clarity, though this time of year it typically is at its best at four to five feet.  This will not help the dry fly bite as it makes it difficult for fish to look to the surface for your offering . Flows on the other hand are quite low and very fishable, though those without experience drifting the Klamath can easily find themselves perched on midstream rocks.  The Irongate Hatchery, for the third season in a row, did not produce any steelhead smolts. They typically have released about 5,000 fish which in the past has provided not stop action on dry flies during this time of year.  Targeting spring run steelhead will be easier and along with juvenile wild fish and the few half pounders that have returned will provide the bulk of the action.   Considering these conditions, we don't expect this spring will go down as  a banner year. IMGP1564IMGP1561IMGP1560Paul, Upper McCloud RiverLocal creeks are accessible and fishing very well, we have enjoyed some outstanding days fishing dry flies with cane rods to eager fish, finding Browns, Rainbows and an occasional Brookie,  though they may be small, they are fun and good for the soul.  If you want to experience the feeling of being a kid again try fishing for these little gems on one of our incredible local creeks.  Many of these are fragile small streams that do not suffer pressure well so we will say no more.

Shasta area spring fly fishing report: Guide’s update

IMGP1545April 26-May 6th The opening weeks of the fly fishing season on streams in the shadow of Shasta have been silly good.  Conditions could not be better, Dogwood trees, Indian Rhubarb, Shasta and Tiger Lilies are in full bloom (much earlier than usual) and local rivers are clear with flows that are as fishable as it gets. The weather has also cooperated with near perfect temps into the 70's and 80's.  The blue skies were disrupted by some showers and wind this past weekend as well as early this week but we fished through it all and the fishing (and catching) continues to be exceptional.Hatches have been showing early as well and with the weather forecast calling for more great weather, we recommend you plan a trip in the upcoming weeks as our biggest and best bugs of the year will be arriving soon! IMGP1547IMGP1549The Upper Sacramento River is in amazing condition all the way from the Box Canyon to Lake Shasta with extremely low, clear flows and hungry trout.  We are experiencing a very small bump in flows each day with fluctuations in runoff but flows continue to be down to summer type levels. Water temps have also climbed into the mid fifties which is ideal and the trout have been active and willing dance partners. IMGP1530IMGP1529Nymphing with big stonefly patterns accompanied by small (size 14-16) mayfly  and caddis patterns has worked best early in the day, while later we have been fishing with dries, on several occasions cutting off our droppers because the dries have been so productive.  We are seeing light hatches of Blue Wing Olives and springtime caddis along with some lingering March Browns and Brown Drakes.  Green Drakes, Grey Drakes, Salmonflies and Goldenstones will be taking stage next.  We expect these hatches to come early and with the river in this condition we expect a bonanza.  We still have some guide dates available in the coming weeks, drop us a line for the latest conditions or to schedule a great local guide. IMGP1541IMGP1540The McCloud River is fishing as well as we have ever seen it this time of the year.  Flows are exceptionally low and clear, 186 cfs at Ah Di Na, much like you will find in midsummer so the fishing can be technical.  Anglers intent on pounding typical runs with indicators along with everyone else are finding limited success while those in the know who are fishing dry flies, with and without droppers, in tucked away spots are enjoying an incredible bounty. Hatches have been sparse with some lingering Blue Wing Olives, March Browns, spring Caddis and Brown Drakes.  No Stoneflies yet as water temps are colder on the McCloud than it's sister rivers the Upper Sac and Pit River, where water temps are in the mid fifties and stoneflies are beginning to emerge.  Stealth is key as fish are podded together and presenting flies, hooking and playing fish away from the group rather than spooking one that can alert the pod improves success.  The word is out, Ash Camp has filled on weekends and Ah Di Na has been half to nearly full and all the tags at the Nature Conservancy have been put to use.  Best to visit midweek if you are able. IMGP1535IMGP1546IMGP1536The Lower Sacramento River continues to amaze us with some of the best spring time fishing we have ever seen.  This river tends to cycle and we are definitely on an upswing with many large fish hooked on each and every trip.  The bite has been most consistent on PMD's though a few lingering March Browns and some summer caddis are getting grabbed as well as rubberlegs. The river has been fishing well from Caldwell Park all the way to Red Bluff. Summer Caddis (Hydropsyche) hatches are building each afternoon and should help extend the good bite later into the day.  Flows were raised today to 6,500 cfs and are scheduled to raise to 7,000 cfs which is ideal for drifting the river but will reduce the number of spots waders can fish effectively.  We have some guide availability in the coming weeks including access for anglers confined to wheelchairs.  Drop us a line for the latest. Fine New Zealand Wine (notice the pinky finger) & Fall RiverFeisty Fat 'Bows all day!Hatches on the Fall River have been sparse and the dry fly fishing has been limited but good when and where you find it.  Fish are podded and once they are located, they have been taking nymphs and streamers well.  On most days fishing on the upper river has been better than the lower river as many Rainbows, particularly the larger ones are still likely on the spawn.  We expect hatches to build in the coming weeks and the dry fly fishing to take off.  We have added a few new great guides to our Fall River Staff this season, with Vanessa Cummings, Jeremy Baker and Jason Cockrum, each who have guided the Fall River for years, joining veterans Tom Peppas, George Durand and Scott Saiki.  We recommend scheduling a great local guide now as availability during prime times is filling fast. The Pit River has been fishing fair though few anglers are visiting as the new flow regimen limits the pocket water fishing that made this river famous.  Those who have learned the new productive spots are enjoying success nymphing with rubberlegs and small mayfly and caddis droppers.  No exceptional dry fly fishing to report, yet.  We have not received a report from Hat Creek, do stay tuned. Drop us a line if you are headed our way, we would enjoy sharing what we can about local conditions whether you are seeking a  guide or not.  We hope to see you soon!  

Northern California Fly Fishing Guides Season Preview

Upper SacramentoThe General Trout Season opens this Saturday, April 26th!

This weekend will be your first opportunity to sample the McCloud, Hat Creek and Fall Rivers this season.  Backcountry skiers, rafters and kayakers are rightfully bummed with the drought conditions this spring, but fly fishers have good cause to celebrate these rare outstanding conditions when our best hatches of the year peak and flows are at historically low levels making rivers incredibly accessible. With nearly all local rivers in great shape folks will likely be spread out. The National Weather Service is also forecasting showers in the shadow of Shasta with daytime temps in the 50's and 60's this weekend (clearing early next week) which should also help keep the crowds at bay, but spark hatches and improve the bite.  Our recommendation is to fish early and often this spring! Our year round trout rivers including the Upper Sacramento, Lower Sac and Pit Rivers have been fishing exceptionally well, with flows on the Upper Sac and McCloud Rivers unbelievably low, at levels and clarity we don't see until late June in average seasons. Fall River and Hat Creek are in great shape as usual and we expect with the mild spring that hatches will likely come off earlier than usual.   If you are headed to the shadow of Shasta, please drop us a line to schedule a guide or to check on the latest conditions!

Upper Sacramento River

Big and beautiful springtime Rainbow finds the net fly fishing the Upper Sacramento RiverFishing Conditions The last several weeks the fishing has been outstanding with several fish in the teens and a few over 20" to hand.  We have seen dry fly fishing with March Browns and Brown Drakes that we usually only dream about. Flows are amazingly low for this time of year, making it very wadeable and fishable, particularly as anglers work upstream. This spring looks to be similar to last season which was our best in many years as conditions will allow us to fish during the biggest hatches of the season. Hatches appear to be unfolding early this year as we've already seen the beginning of the Salmonfly, Goldenstones and March Browns this week, with the peak of the hatches and the big Mayflies of spring soon to follow. We'll also be seeing an abundance of smaller bugs, including PMD's and spring caddis in the coming weeks.  The bite has been best on small caddis and mayflies nymphs with light midday hatches of March Browns and Brown Drakes getting the fish looking up. Big nymphs in sizes 4 to 10 have been productive particularly for the larger fish, though typically more fish come on the smaller offerings. There  are  spawning Wild Rainbows this time of year. If you spot fish in shallow water in groups or pairs enjoy the show but please avoid spooking or fishing to them as they are exceptionally vulnerable in the low water we are seeing this season. Consider this your invitation to get here now and fish it soon and often this spring.Shasta Trout's local guides are intimate with the river as we spend more time on the Upper Sac each season individually than all our competitor's guides combined, just drop us a line so we might help you to enjoy the bounty! Water Conditions Flows bumped up to 900 cfs  earlier this week but dropped back down to just above 400 cfs, with daily fluctuations related to air temps and passing storms.  The norm for this time of year is 2,000 cfs and we typically don't see flows this low and fishable until the end of June for most seasons.   Water clarity is outstanding and with water temps in the mid to upper forties expect fish to be taking well. With a snow pack well below the average and warm weather in the forecast we expect these great conditions to continue into the coming weeks when our biggest hatches of the year will peak. Flies Small nymphs produce more fish on average than the larger ones but the trophy fish have been taking the bigger flies. Fish Copper Johns, Micromays, Pheasant Tails, Iron Sallies and small caddis patterns in 14-18's in runs, slots, slicks and pocket water. Rubberlegs, Prince Nymphs, dark and golden stone imitations are increasingly finding fish. Expect to see improving hatches of the big bugs and increasing top water action in the weeks to come.

McCloud River

Reopens Saturday, April 26th. Patrick McCloud Redband 10/07Fishing Conditions We could not be more excited about the opener on the McCloud this season as we experienced some outstanding fishing in similar conditions early last season after challenging high water early seasons several prior years during the time hatches on the river were at their best.  The McCloud River below McCloud Reservoir looks to be in superb shape with flows on the lower river at summer release levels, well below the norm with good clarity. The McCloud's sister rivers, the Upper Sac and Pit have been excellent lately and we expect much of the same for the opener on the McCloud. Flows on the Upper McCloud above the reservoir are well below the seasonal norm but a bit higher than the trickle we see in summer.  The first couple weeks after the opener can be quite crowded on the Upper McCloud River as folks look to fill their creels with hatchery fish as well as the wild rainbows trying to spawn. To enjoy the McCloud's full splendor we recommend you schedule a day with one of our local guides.  We spend more time on the McCloud River each season individually than our competitor's guides spend collectively. Water Conditions Flows below McCloud Reservoir have been decreasing down to 402 cfs at Lake Shasta and are steady at 184 cfs at Ah Di Na with fair to good clarity. With a low water year in store, it is unlikely PG&E will dump water and dampen the opener so we expect fishing to be excellent.  Flows on the Upper McCloud above the McCloud Reservoir are quite low dropping to 650 cfs, well below the norm and will likely remain so for the coming weeks with temporary increases during and after rainstorms. Quite unusual for this time in the year, there will be many places to cross on the Lower McCloud, similar to midsummer conditions with lots of pocket water and many runs that rarely see early season anglers.  With the Upper Sac, Pit River and small creeks running lower that usual, we hope and expect the Lower McCloud will avoid becoming the McCrowded this spring. Flies The opening of the season is most often a nymphing affair but look for opportunities for dry fly action midday and towards evening. Big bugs will become increasingly important, a few Salmonflies and Brown Drakes have been spotted, probably a sign that hatches will come off earlier than usual this season? 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 Stonefly dries in orange or yellow #6-10, or a large Parachute Adams, 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 stick nymphing.

Lower Sacramento River

Lower Sacramento 1/07 Fishing Conditions Recent fishing for trophy Rainbows has been phenomenal.  This spring has fished as well as we have ever seen it in any season, particularly for larger fish.  Flows have been about half the norm this week, a bit below 4,000, then bumped above 4,000 and now at 4,000 which has concentrated the large trophy 'bows and provided an opportunity for the fish of a lifetime.  There are no scheduled flows changes but expect some increases  in late May and June as irrigation demands in the central valley grow.  This will spread the fish out a bit and local knowledge will be helpful in locating the fresh lies. The PMD's have arrived in full force, with some Pinks, lingering March Browns, Blue Winged Olives, and spring caddis to go with some summer caddis beginning to show as the bite gets grabbier. Some Salmonflies are also hatching on the lower drifts where the fish have been taking stonefly nymphs as well.  We continue to have great success side drifting small nymphs & rubberlegs while the dry fly fishing has been good but technical if, when, and where you find it.   Water clarity continues to be outstanding with  the river fishing well from the Posse Ground all the way to Bend.  Spring showers can still impact clarity downsteam when side streams flush during and a few days after storms. Drop us a line to schedule a friendly local guide during this prime time, most of our guides have grown up on the banks of the Lower Sacramento River and know it intimately having fished it their entire lives. Water Conditions Releases at Keswick increased from 3,750 cfs on April 18th to 4,250 cfs and then back down to 4,000 on the 23th which is well below the norm of 8,000 and superb for fly fishing.   Flows at Bend Bridge are at 4,710 cfs, less than half of the median for this time of year of 10,000 cfs. Water clarity is excellent through out but can be impacted by showers (a few this weekend in the forecast) on lower stretches below tributaries.  Walk and wade opportunities are exceptional but will be much more limited if and when we see irrigation flow increases. Flies Small nymphs below rubberleg patterns are the norm. Your favorite PMD nymphs, various Pheasant tails and Micromays in #14 - 18"s will likely get the most attention but those trying Prince Nymphs, Copper Johns, Ironsallies, Fox Poopahs & Birdsnests are also finding fish. For two and three fly rigs try adding a Super Floss Rubberleg or Microspawn. There are still some Rainbows on the spawn, please do not target fish podded up in shallow gravel beds.

Pit River

IMGP2822Fishing Conditions The fishing as well as the catching has been good except on the Pit 3 section which has been high due to some PG&E work.  Flows are high which with the revised flow regime has become the new norm.   Water clarity is fair and improving making dry fly fishing possible. We are finding fish nymphing classic runs and slots prospecting with two fly rigs but attractor dries with droppers in pocket water and caddis in the evening have also brought some very fine fish to hand. Small patterns have been out fishing large ones but the larger specimens have preferred the bigger bites. Might consider trying a streamer? This is an early season gem as spring hatches are terrific and come off sooner here than local sister rivers.  Work on Pit 3 is expected to be completed in early May, stay tuned! With the new flow regimen crowds are a thing of the past, but with the limited access, weekdays can fish better.  The Pit is an excellent venue to round out  your opening week successfully!   We recommend scheduling one of our great local guides who know the river intimately as they have spent as much time on it as our biggest competitor's guides spend collectively. Water Conditions Flows are a bit above optimum, 420 cfs on Pit 5, 475 cfs on Pit 4, at the norm for the new flows and are reasonably clear.  Storms can muddy tribs though in these conditions they should clear quickly.  All reaches have been fishing though most anglers who have sampled the Pit recently had their best success on Pit 5 and Pit 4 as flows on Pit 3 have been disturbed due to work by PG&E. Flies Standard prospecting with nymphs has produced the best. 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. Dry flies and droppers? Try large attractors with droppers fished in runs and slots then switch to small caddis or mayfly dries when the hatches get going and fish show.  Pull a large streamer in olive or black and hang on.  Might be a good plan to start your season here before the weekend opener!

Fall River

Reopens Saturday, April 26th. Tom with a big bend and big smile!  Fishing Conditions Early scouting on the Fall River is finding very similar conditions to last year with very low and clear flows and minimal early season weed growth.   The flow is steady and the river is clear with perfect conditions.   The bugs have been sparse so dry fly fishing will likely be spotty but nymphing and pulling streamers will always find fish.  With rainy weather in the forecast and other local streams in great shape we expect the opening weekend to be the usual social event as anglers make their annual pilgrimage but will likely lack the crowds that high water seasons bring. Fishing after opening weekend can be more enjoyable and productive if you are able.  Shasta Trout owners Craig & Jerri Nielsen have been sampling the Fall on or just after opening weekend for over twenty five years and plan to return again this season. We feature half a dozen seasoned guides on the Fall River this season including a few of the finest guides anywhere! Expect predominately a mix of Blue Wing Olives and Pale Morning Duns along with some springtime caddis.  Before and after hatches plan on nymphing or swinging flies to fish that are active and willing.   Locating pods of feeders and technical, stealthy presentations will be key.  Flows and clarity are currently ideal, and with little snow at lower elevations, melt from tribs on years like we are having is unlikely to cloud the water and spoil the dry fly fishing.  We recommend scheduling one of our great local guides,  all of them have been fishing and guiding the Fall River longer than our biggest competitor's guides have been collectively. Water Conditions The steady primary flows from this giant spring creek bubble out of the ground from the aquifer.  The few small tributaries that contribute flows and can silt the river making fishing less productive, particularly the dry fly fishing are also low and clear so we expect a terrific spring season.  Some adult fish this time of year have moved into tribs and the  upper river preparing to spawn or are spawned out and heading back out.  Please do not actively fish over pods of wild Rainbows on spawning beds. Flies Small dries are the norm during hatches.  We prefer low floating imitations that provide good profiles such as Parachute PMD's and BWO's, Hacklestackers, Sparkle Duns and the like.  Having Emerger and Cripple patterns is always  a good bet as well.  Try nymphing with or without a tiny indicator with small mayfly patterns such as Pheasant Tails, Hunch Back Infrequens, Poxyback PMD's, and Micromays as well as your favorite caddis pupa patterns.   We most enjoy swinging small streamers and nymphs before and after hatch periods.

Hat Creek

Reopens Saturday, April 26th. Hat CreekFishing Conditions The Hat is typically in good condition and should fish well during the first weeks of the season. The opening weekend on Hat Creek can be a community affair, particularly at the Powerhouse 2 riffle. With other rivers in the area experiencing low water conditions, Hat Creek will likely see less pressure this season but a good many anglers will still make their annual pilgrimage. Spring hatches are the reason. The fish have had a break from angling pressure and larger bugs make it easier on the angler, particularly those of us with aging eyes. Water Conditions Hat Creek, being low gradient with spring creek conditions does not receive the runoff other local streams experience. In high water years it is one of the few rivers that fish consistently well early. This year  flows on area streams are currently well below average and will be for the coming weeks.  Still Hat Creek can be a circus at Powerhouse #2 riffle on opening weekend so seek out stretches midriver and below or other area waters for the opener or perhaps give Hat Creek a go midweek. Flies The attraction here is the big bugs of spring, Salmonflies, Goldenstones, Green Drakes, Flavs, and Mahoganies but your most likely top water action will come on PMD's and spring caddis. Nymphing the fast riffles downsteam can provide some relief from the crowds and is generally more productive than prospecting with dries during nonhatch periods. Parachute and Paradun PMD's, emergers and cripples #14-16, plan on changing flies often for rising fish than can be selective. EC Caddis & Elk Hair Caddis #14-16 consider adding a pupa as a dropper. Not a bad idea to have a few ants and beetles tucked in the box just in case.

Klamath River

Fishing Conditions Flows on the Klamath continue to be exceptionally low, around 1300 cfs with the norm for this time of year is 2,400 cfs.  We expect very fishable flows in the coming weeks in time for the epic Salmonfly hatch which we typically experience in late May and early June.  Drop us a line for the latest on conditions as ShastaTrout guides fish the Upper Klamath more days individually than our competitor's guides fish it collectively.

Trinity River

Fishing Conditions Flows on the Trinity were increased to 900 cfs at Lewiston with flows expected to be 1,500 cfs tomorrow making the river very high and a bit dangerous to wade.   We will be returning for steelhead fishing in the fall. The majority of our guests reschedule early as availability for the best steelhead guides fills well before the season peaks.  Drop us a line for the latest on conditions as ShastaTrout guides are locals.

Fly Fishing on Upper and Lower Sac is outstanding!

IMGP1528March 24th Fly fishing on the Lower Sacramento and Upper Sacramento Rivers has been outstanding and the Klamath and Trinity still have a few steelhead hanging around for those who want to sneak in their last trip of the season.  We appear to have some much needed spring showers on the way midweek with the forecast calling for clearing over the weekend. River conditions could not be much better with low and clear flows which should make for an exceptional spring and opportunities to take advantage of the best hatches of the year. jeremylsacphoto3IMGP1524Water conditions on the Lower Sacramento River are ideal with clear, steady flows from Keswick which were bumped slightly on March 20th to 3750 cfs and there are currently no scheduled changes.  Hatches have been good on most days, sparse on others with Pale Morning Duns being the main feast.  There are still a few March Browns, Blue Wing Olives and on and off spring caddis with large Stoneflies and summer caddis starting to show.  Most fish prefer eating the small nymphs but of course our land rate is higher when they eat our large rubberleg patterns as most of the bow's we've seen have been big and hot! Northern California fly fishing guide Anthony Carruesco hooks up in an emerald Upper Sacramento runUpper Sacramento River Rainbow TroutThe Upper Sac has been mostly a nymphing affair with a Rubberleg or Goldenstone and small nymph combo.  Similar to the Lower Sac, most fish are eating the small Mayfly and Caddis offerings but our land rate on the bigger bug is better, particularly on the largest fish.  Dry fly fishing is just around the corner, we saw our first Salmonfly of the season and the big Mayfly Drakes are on the way as well.  Flows at Delta on the Upper Sacramento River have dropped below 500 cfs, less than a third of the norm and are clear and dropping, which makes access throughout ideal.  Flows upstream are nearly at early summer levels with most crossings open.  We enjoyed several successful Upper Sac trips this week with the vast majority of fish in the teens, real trophies on this river. We hope to find that illusive twenty incher in our net soon as this is the time of year we get a shot at the biggest fish in the river while enjoying some solitude, as there are few if any other anglers around. The Pit River had been fishing well until some work began on Pit 3 and flows have blown it out.  Work is scheduled to be completed on May 7th.  Pit 5 has some limited access providing good opportunities for hearty souls. DSCF3907Steelhead fishing on the Trinity has slowed but there are still some fish to be found.  Some of them have been the largest fish of the season, still a week or two to get in your final steelhead trip of the season. IMGP1505IMGP1517steveklamathThe Klamath has enjoyed an influx of bright spring fish, both half pounders and small adults from two to four pounds.  Some larger winter fish continue to linger but will be spawning soon.  Nymphing has been best and despite warmer water temps into the fifties, the swing bite has remained surprisingly slow. With the low flows,  we hope and expect this spring to be the best one we've seen in several seasons and recommend scheduling your spring dates on our local freestones, the Pit, McCloud and Upper Sacramento River soon!  The Upper Sac and Pit are open year round, McCloud and Fall Rivers as well as Hat Creek open April 26th.  Look for our preseason preview post and newsletter a week or so before the general opener. IMGP1509Drop us a line if you are headed our way.  We are always pleased to set you up with the finest local guides or send you in a direction you can enjoy on your own.  We hope to see you soon, until then we wish you tight lines and singing reels!