Good fly fishing forecast for the Upper and Lower Sacramento Rivers

TomSteele, Northern California fly fishing guide poses a hefty spring RainbowIt must be Monday because I awoke with snow on the ground again this morning.  To see snow last Monday was a bit of a surprise but after a week of relatively mild spring weather it came as a real shock today.  Fortunately this appears to be the end of the cold weather for a while as this week’s forecast has Mount Shasta back in to the 60’s on Wednesday and the 70’s on Friday, with Redding windy the next few days then nearly perfect with temps in the 70’s through next weekend.

Jeremy Baker poses a chunky Rainbow below the Sundial BridgeFather and son enjoy perfect weather and big Rainbows on the Lower Sacramento RiverWe expect the fishing to continue to be excellent.  The catching was pretty good last week as well.  Water conditions on the Lower Sacramento River are ideal with clear, steady flows from Keswick @ 5,500 cfs and 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 lingering March Browns, Blue Wing Olives and 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 nearly all the bow’s we’ve seen have been big and hot!

Curtis enjoys a nice Rainbow on a beautiful spring dayDon finds a trophy Upper Sac 'bow in the first run of the day!Flows at Delta on the Upper Sacramento River have dropped below 1,000 cfs, about half the norm and are clear and dropping.  Flows upstream are nearly at early summer levels with some crossings opening.  We enjoyed several successful Upper Sac trips this week with the vast majority of fish in the upper 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 Upper Sac has been mostly a nymphing affair with a Rubberleg 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.  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 27th.  Look for our preseason preview post and newsletter in the coming days.

Drop 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!

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