Dave Neal Reports on 3.11.2020
There are a lot of solid fly fishing options in Northern CA right now and through the months of March and April. My short list includes: the Lower Sacramento River, Trinity River, Upper Sac, Pit 3, Shasta Lake for bass.
Steelhead season is winding down. There are fish in the upper Trinity River and believe it when I say that February & March have been some of the best fishing we have seen all season long. The reason? The wild fish arrived and with the tribs too low they’ve been hanging out in the river with no place to go. That all may change this weekend when/if we see a return of rain. If the tribs bump… those fish will too! I wish them the best…it’s been a tough few months to be a steelhead in northern CA and they have places they should be.
Lower Sac is a solid option right now. Fishing has been what you’d expect in March with great weather… it’s ON. Water conditions are good, flows are good and many of the springtime bugs are active. PMD’s, BWO’s, spring caddis, along with stoneflies, large drake nymphs, midges and egg patterns rounding out the menu.
The Lower Sac should remain a top choice for anglers over the next few months…
For those walk n wade fly fishers who just wanna… the Upper Sac and Pit 3 can offer up some amazing potential right now. Flows are prime time perfect… just keep an eye on the precip headed this way this weekend. Heavy rain might affect the Upper Sac more than the tailwater of the Pit River below Lake Britton. Similar bugs to the Lower Sac with maybe more of a focus on general attractor patterns like Pheasant Tails, Price Nymphs (hard to beat the Gordon’s Prince), black midges, rubber legs, etc… along with any of your favorite tung. Czech nymphs you’ve been tying up all winter.
Finally, Shasta bass fishing is really heating up. Yesterday, on the eastside of the lake I saw some of the warmest surface temps yet 55-58 degrees. I got into a mess of spots and some nice hard pulling smallies, too. A lot of fish still clinging deep in 30-40’ of water but plenty are willing on the float n fly as temps warm up in the shallow areas later afternoon. When I’m not trout fishing on the Lower Sac or running late season trips to the Trinity… I am out on Shasta Lake in the bass boat every chance I get right now.I have a few open days so take a look at my calendar online at www.reeladventuresguideservice.com or hit my contact info at the Continue reading
Captain Hogan Brown Reports on 2.27.20
Lower Sacramento River - Striper fishing has been tough as the flows are as low as they get - 5000cfs coming out of Keswick and 5891cfs at Chico - With low and clear water stripers get pretty darn spooky but those with the game can still get bit. Like most places we need some rain and water to mix things up and make fishing a bit easier. We should start to see the migratory push of fish show up soon over the next month which will also mix things up.
Lake Oroville and Lake Shasta - are turning on with this early spring! Good numbers of pre spawn spotted bass are being caught on both lakes and with consistent weather fishing should be good on most days. Rain would help these fisheries as well to - getting some of the creeks and inflows moving would help congregate fish and move the bait around.
Lower Yuba River is fishing well with stable flows around 1000 - 900cfs. Flows are gin clear and while nymphing has been good dry fly fishing requires purposeful good presentations. Spring hatches are getting going with the warm weather and should continue to be good throughout the spring. We most likely will see little flow fluctuation due to run off and actually have a good fishable spring on the Lower Yuba.
Feather River Spring Steelhead Season is right around the corner as prime time is March through early May and with the light winter and early spring we are having we should actually have a good spring season out on the Feather. My prefered method for fishing the spring on the feather is swinging flies but nymphing catches plenty of fish as well.
Dave Neal Reports on 2.20.20
I’m not really quite sure what to make of the weather lately… I’m conflicted. On one hand it has been wonderful soaking up spring like sunny weather every day. It’s been beautiful for weeks!!!
But deep down inside I know that we should be dealing with ice in the snake guides, frozen anchor ropes and numb fingers at this time of year. It’s winter steelhead season for F&%$# sake! We should be swinging flies with dredging tips and dumbbell eyes. All the while questioning our sanity for being out there - in horrid conditions - understanding that all the rain and snow we are enduring is exactly what our wild trout and wild steelhead need at this time of year and for the long hot summer ahead.
So, as nice as it’s been fishing and working in these wonderful sunny conditions lately… winter should be wintering right now. It shouldn’t feel like spring, yet.
Fishing the Trinity River for steelhead has been very good these past few weeks. We have had some of our best days of the season in early to mid February. The wild fish have slowly trickled in and I suspect we’ll see more arrive when we get some rain and another good flow bump. It seems that a lot of anglers gave up on the Trinity this winter (as the Coast turned on). So, it has been real quiet lately. Many days we were the only boat on an entire stretch of river along with maybe one bank angler. The fish are around and they have all been wild. Swinging flies can be a good time right now…
The water conditions are back to very low and clear. It’s been on a slow drop for a while. I imagine things will be much tougher from here on out until we get rain. The fish in the river system will hunker down in the holes and deeper water, waiting for rain and flows to rise in the tribs.
Keep an eye on the forecast and I would say Game On when we finally get some rain.
The Lower Sacramento trout fishery is decent right now. The window is short… more like a half day 4-5 hours when the fish are most active. 11-4pm is solid and you can look for the small caddis, midges, along with midday PMD action.
Who knows what’s in the forecast? Will we have a Miracle March? Odds are good that rain at some point this spring will return. Don’t put away the Gore-Tex yet. For now, I suggest getting out and fishing!
March-May is a great time on the Lower Sac (probably my favorite time of year on this river). We will soon see developing PMD emergence & the Pink Alberts, March Brown mayflies, and random drakes along with little yellow stones, GS stones, and ubiquitous caddis. If you haven’t experienced a trip on this river, ever, or it has been a while, you should do so this season.
Aaron Grabiel Reports on 2.17.20
Fishing is steady with fish eating drys and swung soft hackles. This is a great time of year to explore the “lower Sac” as with the low water wading is effective in many areas. Get out and fish this place it’s a trout factory. Size 12-16 tan poopahs, peaches and cream, size 16-18 black micro mays, various May flies. On top the Mercer’s missing link in black size 16 has been great.
Captain Hogan Brown Reports on 1.9.2020