Fishing Report 5/6/09

Upper Sacramento River

Fishing Conditions


Dramatic increases in flows from a storm over the weekend severely limited fishable water.  Fishability remains limited and it likely will take several days for flows to drop enough to improve.  Warm weather in the forecast should get the bugs moving as we are due to see some of the big ones pop.  A few Salmonflies were about prior to the storm and some big Mayflies are now showing with the Goldenstones soon to follow.  Lately it’s been mostly caddis and small mayflies midday. Best to target the softer edges on the larger runs until flows drop.  Still a few late 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.



Water Conditons


Flows are dropping after a dramiatic increase last weekend from a large storm. Flows on the the very biggest longer runs are more approachable. Clarity is improving quickly and with water temps in the mid fifties expect things  to really turn on

when high flows return to normal. 


Flies


Plan on prospecting with Prince Nymphs, dark and Golden Stone imitations with  small droppers including Copper Johns in copper and gold, Micromays, Pheasant Tails, Iron Sallies and small caddis patterns in 14-18’s.  Stick to long runs, slots and slicks until flows drop. Expect to see increasing hatches of the big bugs in the coming weeks and opportunities to throw big dries!  



Pit River

Fishing Conditions


Conditions on the Pit couldn’t be much better, particularly considering her sister rivers the Upper Sac and McCloud are blown out.  Unfortunately this has concentrated anglers around the easier access points, plan on walking to find fresh water.  Aggressive waders will also find fish but if you are not very familiar with this river wading can be very hazardous!  Flows are at or below normal and water clarity is fair and improving making dry fly fishing increasingly productive. We are finding fish nymphing fast pockets and slots but droppers off of dries have also produced. Small patterns still have been out fishing large ones but this will not be the case for long.  This is an early season gem for hearty anglers as spring hatches arrive sooner here. Plan upcoming local freestone trips on the Pit until conditions on her sister rivers, the McCloud and Upper Sac improve.



Water Conditons


Flows are near optimum and currently at or a bit below the norm for the season and are clearing below tribs. All reaches except Pit 1 have been fishing, best above large tribs until they drop and clear.



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) will continue to improve with increased hatches and improved water clarity.  Bring Salmonflies, Goldenstones, Green & Brown Drake dries and keep your fingers crossed!



Lower Sacramento River

Fishing Conditions


Big rain runoff from tribs made conditions unfishable with water clarity continuing to be the biggest issue.  With fair weather in the forecast the river should be fishable in a day or two.  PMD’s continue to be the best hatch but sunshine will likely bring out some caddis and things could get interesting in the very near future.  The river was fishing well from Bonnieview all the way to Bend and as clarity improves it should return quickly to it’s glory.  Cypress Street Bridge construction has closed boat passage at the overpass.



Water Conditons


Releases at Keswick are scheduled to drop from 9,000 to 6675 by May 7th.   Flows at Bend Bridge topped out at 17,500 and are already nearly back to the norm.  Still a tad off color (but clearing steadily) about 2-3 feet of visibility, it had improved to about 4 feet prior to the storm.

Walk and wade opportunities are slim at 9,000 be will become much improved with flows coming down.   Boat passage at

Cypress Street Bridge due to construction is currently closed.



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 will become increasingly productive as warm weather sparks hatches.  For two and three fly rigs try adding an egg, Super Floss Rubberleg or Microspawn.



McCloud River

Fishing Conditions


Fishing prior to the storm this weekend was good to great.  The storm blew out the tributaries and threatened to spill the dam.  A small piece of water remains fishable but does not crowd well.  As flows out of tribs recede and hatches take off this will be the place to be!  The Upper McCloud remained fishable through a good deal of the storm but is also now running high though it should drop more quickly than the lower river.   The road to Ash Camp is open though only one lane due to rockfall at one point. The road to Ah Di Nah is now open. The first couple weeks after the opener can be very crowded on the Upper River as folks look to fill their freezers with hatchery fish as well as the wild rainbows trying to spawn.


Water Conditons


Flows on the lower river are dropping steadily but still have a long way to go.  It will take several days of clear weather to return to normal.  Water temps still in the mid forties so you’ll want to get your flies right on a fish’s nose.  The Upper River is high but will quickly turn to normal for this time of year. The upper river is stocked so expect crowds.


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 have been spotted. Perhaps 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 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.



Hat Creek

Fishing Conditions


Some very nice fish came to hand on Hat Creek since the opener.  Almost all the action has been on nymphs, either under indicators or dries.  There has been fair afternoon hatches of PMD’s, Eporus and even some Green Drakes, with a few Salmonflies showing before the stormy weather began over the weekend.  The Hat is in great condition, the best we’ve seen in a few seasons.  With other rivers blown out Hat Creek can get crowded  particularly on weekends. Look for the fishing to improve with the weather and the crowds to 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. The flows on area streams are currently quite high so expect company particularly on weekends. If you want to avoid the circus on the Powerhouse Riffle 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 spring caddis. A few Green Drakes are showing, not a bad fly to hang a nymph below.  Nymphing the fast riffles downsteam can provide some action during non hatch periods.  Parachute and Paradun PMD’s, 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. The recently released smolts can provide non stop action at times. Look for some Salmonflies to arrive later in May.  Still a few steelhead mostly small springers hanging around . Water temps have increased to the upper 50’s and will continue to rise.



Water Conditions
Flows have been steady at 1600 cfs.   We expect this to be an optimum flow for the big Salmonfly Hatch starting later in May. This is nearly half the mean flow and very fishable. Plan on drifting as wading is still limited and except for late spawners most fish are holding in deeper water.



Flies


Flies for the smoltathon 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 are on the way!


Trinity River


Fishing Conditions


Releases on the Trinity increased from 300 cfs to 4,000 cfs on May 1st! This will make the Trinity not only unfishable but dangerous. Come back after the whitewater folks have their fun.


Water Conditons


Releases on the Trinity increased from 300 cfs to 4,000 cfs on May 1st!.  Check to see that

Flows have dropped before venturing out.


Flies


Check back when conditions improve.

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