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Fishing Report

Lost Coast Outfitters Fishing Report 12/14/22

Lost Coast Outfitters Fishing Report 12/14/22

Upper Sacramento: It’s winter, who knew?! Access is tough on upper river just due to snow. If you’re sniffing around the Upper Sac, stay below Conant for less snow and easier parking/walking. Anglers fishing the McCartle area have reported decent catching. Stick to small mayfly nymphs #16-18, Rubber Legs #8-10 and small yellow egg patterns to boot. Nothing unusual to report, fair fishing if you are willing to put in some time. The water is a little lower than normal, but that’s largely due to the cold temps and no snowmelt/rain.

Pop in or Call Ted Fay Fly Shop for up to the minute reports. 

Lower Sacramento: Fishing well, as it often does in winter. Strong BWO hatches and good nymphing, S&M, Psycho May. Small Pheasant Tails #16-18 mayflies, anything olive baetis looking. Attach a bobber, and just add water. While strong hatches don’t always translate to good dry fly fishing on the Lower Sac, it’s certainly possible and it pays to keep an eye out for heads sipping adult mayflies. Releases out of the dam are on the low side for this time of year hover around 3000cfs.

Call Dustin Revel for a day on the Lower Sac: 530-921-1563

Putah Creek: We are under a voluntary spawning closure right now. It runs December 1 st through March 1 st every year. Yes, the creek is technically open to fish, but please give these wild trout a break and venture elsewhere. If you want to watch some spawning activity, take a walk along the trails next to the creek and look for big fish in pairs or pods over clean gravel in moving water. Super cool and educational.

The Delta: Beautiful conditions post storm. Clean water through much of the Delta, but a fairly tough bite. It’s between season out there, and the fishing is marginal as expected. Water temperatures are below 50 degrees and fish are in their winter pattern. Look for flats where the water will warm a bit through the day. Sometimes it only takes a couple degrees to turn on the bite. 10-20 fish/day for the boat is a good day right now and you need work for them. This isn’t big fish time, but still some decent fish reported, in the 5 pound range. Nothing to get super excited about currently, but well worth fishing on decent weather days. Not much pressure out there either, so if you want to have a pleasant day without any competition winter is where it’s at!

Call Bryce Tedford for trips on the Delta year-round: 206-696-2437

The Bay/Beach: It’s perch time on the Bay Area beaches. In between storms, look for calm days without a big swell. Sinking lines with an array of small brown/tan/orange crab patterns will net you a few of our palm sized native beach dwellers. Stop by the shop and pick up a couple of our custom perch patterns and we’ll line you out on a good stretch of beach to check out.

Eastern Sierra:

The East Walker is closed for the season. Opens again on the last Saturday in April.

Upper Owens: Snow and more snow on the upper river. This is good, but makes access tough. The river is accessible by snowmobile, skis or walking in on snow machine tracks. The water and conditions are COLD. However, it’s worth the effort, because trophy trout swim up from Crowley Lake in winter and hang in the river. The drought has affected the river as it enters the lake and made it tough for fish to get up into the river, but the fish want to get out of the lake as it freezes over and they will make it up eventually. The big fish are parked in the deeper pools and cut banks. To find them you need to be systematic and fish each spot thoroughly. They won’t move far to eat a fly. They are lethargic due to cold temps, but just keep casting and you’ll find them. San Juan worm in pink and red is the number one pattern. Eggs, tiny Pheasant Tails and other small mayfly nymphs under a small indicator are the way to go. Be patient, fish hard.

Lower Owens: The lower river, near Bishop, is much warmer and fishing well. Bonus: no snow on the ground. Air temps are in the 50’s and water temps only a little lower. BWO’s are showing in the late morning and the window is short, but if you want to get fish on dry flies in December, this is one of your best opportunities. Fish a #18 parachute BWO, Quigley Cripple or Sparkle Flag on a long leader. Drift the foam lines, the fish are there. On the nymphing side, fish the deeper buckets with #16-20 Pheasant Tails, midges, Hares Ears and other standard nymphs under a bobber or tightline.

Report From Jim Stimson


As expected, the water is low and cold. Anywhere on the California side is hard to access right now just due to snow. Much-needed recent storms have dumped feet of powder on the Tahoe region and most of the locals are skiing. However, if you cruise on down to the NV side, east past Sparks, you’ll find no snow and some decent fishing (remember to buy a Nevada fishing license). The Nature Conservancy section is a good option, with more flow and access. Not much in the dry fly category right now, but streamers and nymphs will put you in the money. If you’re chucking streamers, concentrate on the slower water and pools and throw standard patterns, like black leeches and various Bugger patterns. Nymphing with Zebra Midges and egg patterns under a bobber is the ticket if you want to go that route. Or, do both, and fish all the water. Find yourself a two-footer for Christmas.

Call Matt “Gilligan” Koles to fish the Truckee, year-round: 775-351-6665

Lower Yuba: The last storm blew out Deer Creek, and therefore most of the lower river. Good news is it’s already clearing up and fishable. It will keep dropping and clearing as conditions dry out. Anytime you see a high water event, strap on a Rubberlegs and a worm and throw it under a bobber. That’s a foolproof recipe. You may still see a few salmon spawning and various egg patterns are still in the mix. Mostly the trout are keyed on small baetis and midges, as is standard for winter. Small Pheasant Tails, Zebra Midges, S&M BWO or anything small and olive/brown will take fish. Anglers are catching a few steelhead here and there so stay cool if you set the hook on something substantial that rips some line off your reel. Dry fly action is possible 365 days a year on the Lower Yuba. It’s a little inconsistent right now but if you’re patient and keep your eyes open you’ll find fish sipping BWO’s here and there. Tie on a #18 Parachute Adams on a long leader and make an accurate cast. Streamer fishing produces throughout the winter too. Buggers, Zonkers, soft hackles will all produce, stripped or swung.

Call Ben Thompson to get out on the Lower Yuba: 916-743-8290

Trinity River: Good days and tough days mixed in. When a good rain storm hits and freshens up the water, anglers are getting good numbers of fish, but when it’s cold and dry most folks are only getting a handful of hook-ups a day. Still, 2-4 fish a day doesn’t suck and if you play your calendar right with the water conditions, you can hook triple that number. Still a few spawning salmon around so a glo bug or bead will take fish. Most folks have been fishing smaller nymphs like Pheasant Tails, Copper Johns, Dark Lord and of course stoneflies like black/brown Rubber Legs. Flows out of the dam are spot on normal for this time of year at 297cfs.

Call Dustin Revel for year-round trips on the Trinity: 530-921-1563

Klamath River: Fishing is fair to good depending on the day and time of day. The upper 30 miles are sporting excellent water conditions, albeit a bit low compared to the long-term median flow. All the recent precipitation has come in the form of snow, so the water clarity is good and stable. Water temps are solid, in the high 40s to low 50s. The bite is kind of tough mid-day just because of cold weather. Both swinging and nymphing are producing fish. If you’re swinging think sink tip and smaller wet flies. If you’re nymphing stick to stoneflies and egg patterns. Fish the water appropriately, meaning, swing the riffles and runs and nymph the seams and pockets. Cover all the holding water you can find and you’ll find fish.

Call Chuck at Wild Waters Fly Fishing for Klamath River trips: 530-859-3474

Napa River: Clean water mid 50s temps with good fishing before the before the rain blew it out and muddied up the water. The Napa is often off-color, but if it’s too brown it can be unfishable. As soon as we get a few dry days in a row it will be game on. Watch the tides and don’t get stuck in the mud.

Call Patrick Mackinzie year-round for guided trips on the Napa River: 707-721-6700

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Northern California Fly Fishing Report

Northern California Fly Fishing Report

AC Flyfishing Reports on 10.22.20

We're entering the heart of our Fall fishing season here in Northern California. We've had some exceptionally good fishing taking place on our local rivers and the weather has been fantastic. From the Lower Sac to the Upper Sac, McCloud, Fall River, etc. There are so many excellent options this time of year. 

The Lower Sac has been one of our main rivers of focus over the past few weeks and will continue to be through November and even into December. There are good numbers of Salmon spawning in the river and this annual event makes for some very fun, fast paced fishing. Too many great fish stories to recall recently. The weather has been unseasonably warm but it's tough to complain when we get to wear shorts and sandals to the river most days. The extended forecast shows really nice weather heading our way with temperatures dropping into the 70s. We are expecting the fishing to stay good and the trout to remain on a steady egg and bug diet for the foreseeable future. There are decent numbers of Steelhead around in the Lower River, making a float south of Anderson a great option. As we get into November and December, we should continue to see more of these Steelhead trickle into the system. This is a wonderful time of year to come and experience both Trout and Steelhead fishing on the "Lower Sac".
By late October we begin to turn our attention to the Trinity and Klamath Rivers. Steelhead are already beginning to show up in both of these systems and we are looking forward to a good November and December this year of targeting Steelhead here. You should typically expect to find larger numbers of fish in the Klamath but these fish, on average are going to be smaller than Trinity River Steelhead. You can expect to find larger fish in the Trinity but typically fewer than the Klamath. Both rivers are great options in late Fall and Winter. The Trinity will pickup as soon as we get a few small wet weather systems move through the North State. Now is a great time to plan your next Steelhead adventure. 
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Northern California Fly Fishing Report

Northern California Fly Fishing Report

Chuck Volckhausen Reports on 10.15.2020

Fish are spread throughout the river.  Salmon are moving through and a few of them have started dropping some eggs.  We could use a little more rain.  The rain we did get soaked into the ground and even the creeks that drain the fire burned forests, didn’t color up.

Half pounders could be found anywhere but they are not everywhere.  Some Klamath river sized adults are also being caught.  It’s the time of year when we get to swing flies with dry lines and skaters. 

I have been seeing some algae bloom.  Both near the bottom of the river and recently up top.  Look out for this.  It can ruin your day and make you sick.  Best to avoid the places where the water is very green.  It’s late in the year for this to be happening.🤷‍♂️

McCloud River

We are excited for some colder temps to come through.  The fishing is improving on the McCloud and bugs are moving around a bit.  Back to being able to catch some fish on dry flies.

We all love the fall here.  Just one month left on the magical McCloud.

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Northern California Fly Fishing Report

Northern California Fly Fishing Report

Rick Cox Reports on 10.8.20

McCloud River

As of this moment the smoke from all the fires is finally leaving us. The McCloud River has been giving up some beautiful bows and brownies producing big smiles from our satisfied customers. With the onset finally of cold nights we are seeing more active fish, you can currently find them taking both nymphs and dries. The October Caddis are just beginning to get out and about in the mornings and late afternoon. The fish are just beginning to key in on them and it will only get better as we get deeper into October and early November. A recent outing found us some large browns. To find them you must be near the bottom in the mud, weighted sculpins with a smaller nymph as a teaser working best.

Upper Sacramento River

Hazy skies come and go from the Zogg Fire and the Upper Sac is starting to kick in with the mornings cooling. As I said the mornings are cold and the fishing has been on the slow side but as the afternoon kicks in the fish have been very grabby. The October Caddis are just making a showing particularly from Gibson up to Ney Springs. Our outings have had more success recently nymphing but the fish should be getting tickled enough any time soon by these big caddis so start thinking about these USDA choice morsels. The Chubbys and Stimmies with a dropper will serve you well. Lots of smaller Caddis out too so think Poopahs as a go to nymph.

Klamath River

Finally the Klamath has opened back up after the devastating  Happy Camp fire closures. We recently had a boat near there and can report the half pounders are definitely in. The river will only continue to improve as the heat waves are gone, days are cooling and the water temps drop. If you would like a fun day with these early steelhead think about hiring one of our excellent guides. We offer swinging or running nymphs, your choice. The fall on the Klamath offers some excellent fishing along with an explosion of fall colors.
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McCloud River, Upper Sacramento, and Klamath River Report

McCloud River, Upper Sacramento, and Klamath River Report

Chuck Volckhausen Reports on 9.4.2020

Water clarity on the McCloud has improved and so has the fishing with it.  I would say quality more than quantity lately.  Hatches are few and far between still and I don’t expect to see many bugs on the Mccloud while the weather remains hot.  Come on cold weather, bring some rain and bring on the Caddis.

The Upper Sac is fishing well.  It’s warm in the lower reaches.  Please try to avoid fishing in the afternoon and evening anywhere below Sweetbriar.  The nights are cooling down up here and an early morning mission isn’t a bad idea right now.  The upper river near Mt. Shasta is cold and clear.  No problems fishing up here in the heat of the day.  Again, not so many bugs rights now.  Especially during the midday.  We could use some cold weather and some rain here too. 

Excited for Fall??  Me too!!!

Fall for us means “let’s go fishing”!  All the trout streams in our area are fantastic fall fisheries.  Both the McCloud and Upper Sac will have hatches happening on a consistent basis once the air temps and water temps cool a bit.  We’re almost there.  I’m looking forward to fishing more dry flies and seeing the big Caddis moving around.  The Fall brings in the “big ones” 🤷‍♂️... and with that said I’m ready for some anadromous fish on the end of the line.

Steelhead fishing on the Klamath is right around the corner for us.  I still haven’t heard any legit reports on what’s happening down at that shit show they call the mouth.  (If you have been this Summer I’d love to hear what you have to say about it)  But I haven’t reached out much yet either.  I’m crossing my fingers in hopes of a decent Salmon run this year.  I feel like it’s been a while.  In fact, it has been a while. I’m ready to get down there and check it out.  I love the Fall season on the Klamath.  It’s time for Spey rods with floating lines and silver lightning shorties jumping around recklessly.  September came quick this year and October to follow really soon.  Get ready. 

Good luck out there friends!!

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Northern California Trout Fly Fishing Report

Northern California Trout Fly Fishing Report

Chuck Volckhausen Reports on 5.28.2020

The fishing in our area has been good the last couple weeks.  Spring conditions are in full effect with hatches, blooms, critters, and random weather all abundant in Mt. Shasta.  It’s crowded out there already and I expect it to stay that way for a little while.

We have a small community up here and we have been damn near COVID free.  Don’t be the person that shows up here to fish acting sick.  
As more and more of California opens up we are gaining access to rivers, activities and bars/restaurants.  Please use your head in traveling and all I ask is that you be respectful toward our small town it’s resources and the people that live here.  It’s already very crowded at the outside access points and more and more people are coming to visit.
Many of the camps and bathrooms are still closed and locked. If you must come up to fish and you are planning on camping, don’t leave piles of shit and toilet paper in the woods.  Dig a hole and bury your 💩.  This is huge problem in the angling community.  I have already had to see much more 💩 and TP on the side of the rivers than ever before.  Seriously this has to stop.  Some of us walk these spots everyday and everyday someone else has dropped dookie right off trail.  Please bring a shovel and bury your poo and TP at least a foot deep.
Rain last week and snow pack conditions colored the Mccloud up for a couple days.  She still has some silt sediment keeping the visibility short but not enough to keep the fish from looking around.  Hatches are becoming thicker by the day.
Rain last week brought the flow up a bit on the Upper Sacramento.  We have hot weather on the forecast but most of the hard run-off is past and the next couple weeks here could be red hot.  
Stoneflies can be found on every river right now and Salmon fly season is here.  Klamath, Rogue and most other rivers will have fish eating the big bug as Spring turns into Summer.
The local forecast is for hot weather over the next week.  This can keep an angler eager as conditions become predictable.  Timing is everything, presentation is second and watch out for snakes.  
If you must be out there I wish you good luck, safe travels and a great experience.
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California Steelhead Report

California Steelhead Report
Anthony Carruesco Reports on 1.7.2019
We're smack dab in the middle of our Winter Fishing season. It's been cold in Northern CA and fairly wet - all great things for the coming Spring season. The breakdown:
The Lower Sac has been "fair" at best the past month or so. Don't expect huge numbers up in town this time of year. You can expect solitude, though and the chance to throw the dry fly during unpredictable afternoon Baetis hatches. The Lower reaches have been fishing best for quantity of fish but you will expect those big shouldered winter trout to be closer to town. There are still a few Steelhead around in the Lower River (Anderson down) as well. Some of the year's best fishing can start to happen in Late February when we get some of those warmer days. Spring time "Brachycentrus" Caddis hatches can create some insanely good trout fishing.
Most of our Attention right now is on Winter Steelhead fishing. From the Klamath and Trinity, to the coastal rivers of the Lost Coast, we've had some highs and lows chasing these fish the past few months. Overall the Klamath has been a STELLAR option since late October. There are a lot of fish around in the upper reaches and not many folks around fishing. The perfect combination. The Trinity has been a different story, unfortunately. Not a lot of fish in the system this year due to aggressive harvest practices from the tribes on the lower end of the river. Not many fish were able to bypass the nets and weirs set out in the Fall so that has put a damper on the fishing on the Trinity for us quite a bit. There have been some very nice winter run fish caught here recently though so things are looking up on the Trinity. The Winter Steelhead rivers of the North Coast have been fishing since Mid-December. There have been some very good days mixed in over the past few weeks but plenty of days where you're working hard for 1 or 2 opportunities a day. As we continue to get rain and the rivers swell, we will expect more fish to move in. This is some of the most rewarding and challenging fishing we have in California. We will be chasing these fish into Mid-March.
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