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Lower Sacramento River Fly Fishing Report

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Dave Neal, Reel Adventures Guide Service

The Lower Sac has fished very well this past week with lots of big, well fed, wild trout coming to the net – along with reports of a few steelhead poking around down below Cottonwood.

The big river on many days has offered us plenty of solitude! Seems that a lot of folks have been saving their fishing equity for the October egg drop madness that hits town every fall season. This is a special time for sure, but these past few weeks in September have been absolutely fantastic with a relatively un-crowded river to fish. We have been floating everything from Posse to Jelly’s Ferry, mixing it up each day. Each float section from the top to the middle river has its own uniqueness and experience to offer. It’s great fishing right now – so if you can swing it, get up here!

The river has been on the slow drop each week. Flows should be at or around 3,500cfs by October 1st – Yes, this is early, but there are two easy explanations:

1) Shasta (and let’s not forget Trinity Lake) are very low and seems silly to piss away so much water since irrigation season is winding down. Conserve it!

2) In years past the flows would drop later in the fall when a lot of salmon redds are dug and fish are actively spawning - this leads to drying-up and desiccated redds at the worst time… and that shall not stand, man!!

 Whether it’s altruistic reasons in order to enhance recruitment of future fish, or just hands being forced turn the big wheel clockwise earlier due to the drought? The river dropping earlier in the season to 3,500cfs is probably a good thing!! It will be interesting to see how it shakes out and what the river conditions will look like.

I’m completely booked the rest of Sept and all of October, already looking forward to November and the steelhead we have to be Thankful for. Open dates are Nov 3,4,11,14,17-19,29,30 for Trinity River and Lower Sac.

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Hogan Brown, Hogan Brown Fly Fishing

Fall is in the air

The days are getting shorter, nights are getting cooler, and the salmon are moving up river. Here are some quick reports, open dates, and some info on the upcoming Cast Hope Steelhead Tournament. MAKE sure you get out fishing in the next few months!

Lower Sac Trout - Salmon are moving up river and I have heard from various guides that the fishing has been very good…not egg bite good but fall trout good. Flows are going to be cut down to 3250cfs the first week of October which is the lowest I have ever seen them so things will change soon. I imagine this flow drop will move the salmon that are in the river up into the riffles and get the spawn going. Octobe is one of the best months of the year on the Lower Sac for trout.

Lower Sac Stripers - September striper fishing has been some of the best I have seen in a long time. The river is full of bait and the stripers are taking full advantage. The fish seem to be podded up around the bait. I have even caught fish walking some grave bars and  sight fishing to fish in 2-3’ of water over the last month. Great time to be on the river. 

Open Dates:
Sept 27
Oct 25
Nov 1, 11, 22, 24-26, 29, 30
Dec 20, 21, 27-31
Jan 2, 4-10, 18, 19, 24, 25, 31 

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Anthony Carruesco, AC Fly Fishing

Fishing on the Lower Sac remains good to very good. The morning bite has been good for the top floats and the bite down lower seems to be pretty consistent throughout the day. We’ve even had a little dry fly fishing happen mid-morning. There have been some nice steelhead showing up in the lower reaches as well. These fish are super hot right now. There haven’t been many fly fishing boats down river at all recently, which has been nice. We should only see more steelhead showing up down river as we get deeper into the Fall season. It’s a great time of year to be on the Sac. 

My last available dates through October are: 
October 2nd and October 29th

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