I do not want to open a can of worms, but I cannot escape the feeling that our current administration is leading us down a dark path. I fear for our public lands, clean air and water…. that said; My heart goes out to the people of Southern California who are battling these insanely destructive fires.
The river has dropped to about 50 cfs. These flows are getting really boney, the fish are spooky, and are sitting ducks. Personally, I am going to wait until the flows come up later this season. The fishing is not easy now but that said, I like the higher flows when the angling is a little more “sporting.” I like to give those big browns and rainbows a fighting chance.
This is the “other” Walker River and a great fishery that I would visit more if the East Walker were not closer. This is a blue ribbon fishery and a fun place to explore. Generally the river runs gin clear as this is a freestone creek, so some stealth is needed. If you like pocket water and technical angling, this is your place….The river is running at about 70 cfs.
The creek is flowing through the canyon at 57 cfs. Target your casts to the feeding lanes between the grasses and rocks. You may not see fish, but they are in there. If you are nymphing, try a San Juan or a Hot Creek caddis. Streamers have also fooled some nice trout.
Upper Owens River
The river is open year around from the Benton Crossing bridge northward (upstream) to the private property boundary. The section below the bridge to Crowley Lake is closed until April.
The flows are roughly 68 cfs high in the river system but as the Owens meanders towards the Benton Crossing bridge, Hot Creek dumps in a significant amount of water especially when spring runoff is involved (see above). In other words, once the Owens makes the bridge near the campground, the flows are closer to 130 cfs. Pink or red San Juans, egg patterns, black leeches, and perch fry have all been working. You can either swing the leeches and fry, or dead drift them through the deeper buckets.
Lower Owens River
Don’t rush out quite yet and grab your fishing gear. The river is down to 350 cfs, but still on the high side for wading. This will be a new river once the flooding ends. The river is spilling its banks and there are sections between Chalk Bluff Road and the river that are wetlands and marshes. It is a muddy, goopy, mess. If you are going to wade, exercise extreme caution. With enough weight you can cast into the quiet water along the edges and perhaps raise a fish.
Jim Stimson Fly Fishing