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Eastern Sierra Fly Fishing Report

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Eastern Sierra Fly Fishing Report

Jim Stimson Reports on 1.7.2020

We have some welcome, hopefully wet weather rolling in this morning. It has been weeks since we have had any significant precipitation. We can use some new snow for the ski area and the spring runoff. The fishing is solid on the Upper Owens, not great numbers of trout, but the fish that are actively feeding are large and fat. The Lower O has been great. It is nice to be able to fish down in the valley again. Enjoy!

East Walker

The East Walker is still flat lining and dribbling along at 20 cfs. Until the river flows pick up, I recommend giving this fishery a rest….. 

West Walker

The river has dropped considerably thru the canyon and is at perhaps 30-40 cfs? The USGS gauge is not working now so this is merely a guesstimate. The river is looking very boney up high but as you drive down the canyon, there is more water as side streams add to the flow. Try patterns like zebra midges and small mayflies. Dry droppers work really well at these flows. May stealth be your guide as the river is not only low, but gin clear. Keep a low profile… if you can spot fish in the river, they can certainly see your movements.

San Joaquin

The road to Devil’s Postpone is closed for the season.

Hot Creek

The creek is flowing through the canyon at roughly 44 cfs. Target your casts to the feeding lanes between the weeds and rocks, plus the overhanging grasses along the margins. You may not see fish, but they are there. Try a dry-dropper setup with a caddis above and a midge or small mayfly below. Hot Creek is always a fun place to fish especially now that the crowds have gone home. 

Upper Owens River

Just a reminder, the Upper Owens is closed for the season BELOW the bridge to the reservoir. The flows are 94 cfs but these are readings taken high in the river system. Once Hot Creek dumps into the mid-section the flows are closer to over 140 cfs. More and more trout are pushing up into the river system from the reservoir. There are some really nice fish to be had with SJ worms, small baetis, and balanced leeches. Work the deeper buckets relentlessly…. they are in there. And beware of any new snow as it will impact the driving approach.

Lower Owens River

The river is cruising steady at roughly 150 cfs and is fishing well with all of the traditional patterns; PT’s, Hare’s Ears, midges, caddis worms…. Thank God for Bishop. It is a nice break from winter when you need to see some dirt again and feel some warmth.


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