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Fishing Report

Hat Creek Fly Fishing Report

Hat Creek Fly Fishing Report

George Revel Report on 6.24.2021

Fishing was excellent mid morning from 8-11am or with some Trico and PMD spinner falls. In the evening the Pmd's and Sallys were coming off with regularity. We predominantly fished dries during these prime times. In the middle of the day nymphing and leeching was the ticket as fish moved to their deeper mid day hiding holes. 

Like clockwork, the fish start sipping trico spinners at 8am. The tricos lay trapped in the surface film of the water. Trapped after laying their eggs the night before the spent spinners float downstream and collect in the seams and swirls. 

The rainbows jockey into position to sip these tiny bugs with gentlest of ease. The gentle sip is the tell-tale sign that fish are eating spinners. With no concern of the dead bug flying away the fish can afford to such laziness in eating their breakfast. For this reason, even the slightest drag on your fly will not be tolerated by your quarry. Pair that with crystal clear water slowly meandering and you have the recipe for a chess game that can ensue for the coming hours. Stealth and presentation become paramount. Fishing become more akin to hunting. 

My spring creek spinner leader is 12ft 4x with 3ft of 6x fluorocarbon. The fluorocarbon sinks just below the surface film of the water removing the dimples the tippet causes on the surface film of the water. These fish will not eat your fly otherwise. 

To catch this fish my client and I slowly got into position and watched the pod until we spotted the largest fish in the pod. We watched him sip flies at very regular intervals. Knowing where he was eating was likely several feet behind where he was holding, we slowly positioned ourselves to make a perfect presentation. A quick pep talk about how one bad cast will put this whole pod down and description of the cast that I thought would fool the fish was spoken softly so as to keep our nerves down. We made a cast well upstream of where the big fish was feeding, trying to be careful to not put the fly in line with one of the other smaller fish that were feeding in the area. To catch a smaller fish would be failure and put this larger fish down. The cast landed exactly where it should have. The arial reach mend put the line above the fly so as to avoid a noisy on water mend. Seeing where the fly lands is so important in spinner fishing because often the fly is very hard to see as it lays flat on the water. We feed the line down to the fish with zero drag. My heart was pumping knowing that this drift stood a real chance.  Just as I was beginning thoughts how to phrase our next cast the fish rose to sip the fly seemingly in slow motion. 

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Eastern Sierra Fly Fishing Report

Eastern Sierra Fly Fishing Report
Eastern Sierra Fly Fishing Report


All of the passes are open now with no restrictions; Tioga, Sonora, and Monitor, as well as the road down to Devil’s Postpile. However, unless you have a campground reservation at Devil’s Postpile, to drive your own, personal vehicle, you will need to pass thru the kiosk at Minaret Vista before 7 am and after 7 pm. Otherwise, you can take a shuttle bus that boards at the ski area. The Middle Fork of the San Joaquin is raging as it plunges over Rainbow Falls. Well worth the short hike.

The creeks and rivers are swollen with high country runoff and there is so much more snow left to melt. Be careful out there! Get yourself a wading staff and cinch up that belt around your waist. River hydraulics are powerful. Err on the side of caution while fishing and wading during this time of year.

East Walker

The flows have dropped to just under 400 cfs, which is still a smidge on the high side, but fishable — with caution. At the higher flows, there is less river to fish safely. The section in particular below the bridge and the Miracle Mile has a steeper gradient and lots of pocket water, which makes for nail biting, white water angling. Your best bet is the softer water below the dam. The trout are moving around and settling into their new habitats. With the high volume of water coming out of the reservoir, the angling options get reduced. Most of the best fishing will be in the Miracle Mile. You will find most of the trout stacked along the river margins, hanging in the softer water. Fishing is decent now. Try yellow sallys in the buckets below the riffles, along with BWO’s, caddis, crayfish and tricos. There are a potpourri of bugs out there now. With the higher water I tend to fish a lot of attractor patterns. With the swift water the trout only have an instant to see and commit to your bugs floating by, make it as obvious as possible for them. I often pull out my trout spey rod for these conditions. I like being able to stand in the safe, docile water along the edges and cast down and across, swinging my bugs into the juicy looking areas under the willows and cottonwoods. It is fun but be careful out there.

West Walker

Yeehaw! The river is ripping thru the canyon at about 838 cfs. Try patterns like San Juans or Prince Nymphs, big attractors, and fish the margins. Do not even think about wading too deep.


San Joaquin

The road is open and the flows are 380. If you poke around, you can find lots of soft water stacked with trout. Bring your waders as the water temperatures are frigid.


Hot Creek

The creek is flowing through the canyon at 125 cfs. Target your casts to the feeding lanes between the weeds and rocks, plus the overhanging grasses along the margins. There are some nice fish lying in ambush for hoppers falling into the creek. You may not see fish, but they are there. Try a dry-dropper setup with a hopper above and midges or caddis below.

Upper Owens River

The flows are 90 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 200 cfs. The better fishing has been above the confluence where the water has better clarity. More and more trout are spreading out throughout the river system. You may see the odd cutthroat here and there leftover form their spawn but for the most part, the trout have left to head downstream to the reservoir, leaving rainbows and browns for the summer months. Hoppers are invading the river system and the trout are loving them.

Lower Owens River

The Lower Owens flows have been bumped up to above 400 cfs. This is on the high side for this section of the river so exercise some caution when you fish. You can easily go for am impromptu swim and end up flushed downstream if you are not careful. Most trout are in that 10-12” range but if you poke around and get lucky, you can hook into some browns in the 15-16” category. There are some healthy midge and mayfly hatches throughout the day. You can find nice dry fly action along the foam lines and quiet water in the morning and evenings. Midges, tricos, mayflies and caddis are all working.

Jim Stimson Fly Fishing
142 Larkspur Lane
Crowley Lake, CA 93546
760.209.4300 (cell)
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Rebecca and I headed up to Clearwater Lodge to fish Fall River...

Rebecca and I headed up to Clearwater Lodge to fish Fall River & Hat Creek. We fished late on Sunday evening on the powerhouse 2 riffle. A storm was blowing through leaving sporadic raindrops and cracks of thunder. The 1 billion mosquitoes out were a sign of a good hatch to come. I was thankful for the Simms Bugstopper Shirt and Ben’s 100that I had brought in anticipation of this particular...

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Hat Creek Fly Fishing Report

Wildwaters reports on 5.1.19

Hat Creek

Although Hat Creek was a very social scene and crowded Saturday Sunday proved otherwise. Our guides and clients found very good fishing at the Power House 2 riffle both days with Sunday being far fewer anglers.

The creek is in excellent shape running a bit high but gin clear. We witnessed occasional PMD’s and Caddis but nothing to get excited about….yet. This is...

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Hat Creek Fly Fishing Report

Aaron Gabriel reports on 6.28.18

Hat Creek

I have been fishing the rifle portions of hat creek. Czech Nymphing with a small soft tackle, size 16-18 as my top fly and the dropper has been a small jig style fly with a tungsten bead, size 14. 

This has been producing incredible action for 6-12 inch fish with the occasional large trout, 14-20 inch. If early morning fishing is your thing don’t forget the...

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Day 2 of 5 Rivers Challenge: Another fun day and happy anglers...

Day 2 of 5 Rivers Challenge: Another fun day and happy anglers fishing the wild trout waters of Northern California– Fall, Pit, McCloud, Upper Sacramento rivers and Hat Creek. We have 8 two-person teams out on the water, testing their angling skills to see who catches the most fish and the biggest fish. Congrats to Steve Johnson and Mikk Anderson for both catching a 19” from the Pit and Fall rivers. So far the competition has one team far ahead the rest, but with one more half-day fishing today, let’s see how it turns out. Thanks to Mike Wier for the photos; he joined teams on the McCloud River and Hat Creek, with a little hex in the evening on Fall River. 

Golden Stones, PMDS, and caddis pupa are to be expected this time of year. 

Hex’s are popping on the Fall River too!

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Hat Creek Fly Fishing Report

Dave Neal reports on 5.24.18

Hat Creek 

The crick is fishing well and is pretty consistent this time of year. Cloudy and rainy afternoons can lead to epic conditions! I like fishing Hat and Pit 3 in the same day for a contrast of experiences (nymphing Pit early and then hunting w/ dry flies on Hat for the evening). Or fish Fall River and then Hat for another change of pace. Look for lots of small...

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Hat Creek, Pit River Report


Hot, Hot, Hot! With temps in the high 90′s to 100′s fish will be relaxing in the middle of the day… as should you! It’s all about the morning and evening. If you are a die hard to fish in the middle of the day find white water, shade and deep pools. 

You should be fishing caddis, Pmds, small soft hackles, ants, grasshoppers, and LBS (little black shit)

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