When it rains it pours, after a long winter without a guide trip for four months, business is booming. The influx of emails, calls, and inquiries off the street has been overwhelming. Being a sole independent guide that does not rely on others to fill trips has been rewarding, and my hard work for the last 20 years guiding is not only paying off, but now has a high level of recognition throughout the state from my many years of experience. It’s all about pleasing my guest, giving it my all, and having a positive and enjoyable time. It’s about the total experience and exploring the great outdoors. I’ve been guiding in Eastern Plumas County mainly and here is the latest scoop. The Middle Fork Feather River is done in the upper watershed, and water temperatures are way up and poor to safely release resident trout. Carp and bass is the game there now, and the Portola area down to Gold Mountain has been producing. Below where Jamison Creek enters the MFFR has been good for smallish rainbows in the mornings and evenings, water temps are 63 to 68 degrees. There is a decent BWO spinner fall in the morning. A dry / dropper rig trailing a submerged spinner is an effective combo. Some yellow sallies are out, and a few caddis as well. The scouring from a heavy winter of precipitation and snow is evident. The occurring problem every Summer is the rock snot (didymo) that chokes the river out, as of now it’s getting a little thicker every day, it’s to the point that nymphing is too much work as one has to remove the slime after your fly bounces off the bottom. You thank all the golf courses in the area for such conditions. 20 years ago the didymo was pretty much nonexistent. America’s first Wild & Scenic River does not get any respect at all.
I’ve been having the most fun guiding on Gray Eagle, Frazier, and Jamison creeks. My guests and I have yet to see another angler, but then again most won’t venture far off the path where the wild things are. Another reason is most anglers do not appreciate small wild trout, boulder hopping, and seeing the unique deep forests of Eastern Plumas County with its unique flora and Fauna. This is 2 to 3 weight action with bushy dry fly attractors, ants, and hoppers. It’s just really fun fishing. My favorite set up is using a 7.5 foot leader and trialing a small flashy mayfly nymph, or a terrestrial 18 to 24 inches behind. The North Fork Yuba River is falling into shape nicely, though it could drop a little more as some runs are too swift. I fished it last week and anytime I found soft water I got some takes on both dries and nymphs.
Overall the rivers in the general area have really come down. I’ll be creekin, guiding, and fishing the small water for the next 6 weeks, see you on the water… if you can find me.