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Northern Sierra Fly Fishing Report

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Jon Baiocchi reports on 5.1.19

Gorgeous spring weather and blue skies have dominated the skies in the Northern Sierra for the last few weeks, and the flows keep pumping at a high level on the Truckee River. At the Granite campground station on Hwy 89 the flows are at 1,530 cubes, add in Donner Creek at 443 cfs and you will find the flows through the town of Truckee at 1,973. Along the Glenshire stretch below the added inflows of Trout creek and Martis creek, flows are 2,430 cubes, and below the Boca/Little Truckee inflow, it’s at 3800 cfs. During the spring runoff, you’ll notice slight pulses in the graphs from freeze/thaw cycles. The highest flows appear around midnight with the lowest flows in the mid-morning.

 Fishing pressure has been heavy in the more popular spots on the Truckee River, but there are plenty of areas that are off the beaten path to fish. Water temps range from 42-46 degrees. The forecast for peak runoff in the Northern Sierra is the last week of May at this time, conditions can change due to weather and air temps so check back to the LCO Fishing Report frequently. The weather during the first week of May has a minor cold front blowing through on Tuesday the 7th with a chance of 1-3 inches of snow above 7,000ft. Quickly returning though will be warmer and typical spring time weather.

The fishing is decent to good if you are willing to put in the work, not a lot of fish, but bigger quality trout. Tight line nymphing, and streamers are the games to be played. From Prosser creek upstream, the water clarity is much better and you can use smaller flashier nymphs. Other than that, it’s the same old basic menu of bacon & eggs, stones, crawdads, and larger attractor nymphs. The right type of water is not that plentiful so move around to multiple spots, put in quality presentations, get out and move on to the next area.

The type of water you are looking for is slow moving and calmer with some depth, right next to the main flow where the abundance of food items are in the drift. Approach the edges of the river with caution and stealth as some trout are holding in the skinny water within the submerged native grasses that are currently underwater. Large bushes next to the bank with accumulated woody debris and logs also may harbor a large trout as it is a prime singular holding area. Special thanks to group #2 of High Sierra Flycasters out of the Gradnerville / Minden area for participating in my High Water Workshop. I’ve have two more scheduled in May. The 4th is filled up with Tahoe Truckee Fly Fishers, but due to some cancelations, there is a few spots open for the 18th workshop. Look for my upcoming mini presentations tour on “High Water Tactics” and “Creekin the Lost Sierra” from May 7-9. I’ll be visiting Gold Country Fly Fishers, Delta Fly Fishers, and Mt. Tam Fly Fishers. These events are free and open to the public. Keep an eye on my blog for new dates regarding my workshops for the rest of 2019 and into 2020 including dry flies, the Skwala hatch, streamers, tight line nymphing, and high water. I will also be conducting a few LCO “Intro to Fly Fishing” clinics being held this summer, dates to be announced. Be careful out there with the big water and don’t take chances, live to fish another day…

Jon Baiocchi / Baiocchi’s Troutfitters ~ baiocchistroutfitters@yahoo.com ~ 530.228.0487

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