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Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Richard Loft Reports on 3.5.21

Hey Everyone I just wanted to check in and  report whats happening on Putah Creek flows are holding right around 105 cfs as of 2/03/2021 and not seeing fish many fish hanging around the redds so I am assuming the Spawn is winding down as it normally does this time of year. So it's watch and wait until flows start to climb again in Spring March/April.

Living in Napa and fishing the creek as much as I do- maybe 100 days a year or more, its still hard to put my finger on it. But it seems like this time between end of the Spawn and summer can be a little slow; its fishable but it just seem like the river is trying to heal itself and fish metabolism is much slower in winter and it just takes time to get back into Spring through Fall when fish are feisty and when it all starts over again. 

Access points and Flows:

 Between Monticello Dam and Lake Solano there are 5 marked points to access and fish the creek #1, #2, #3, #4, and #5 but remember there are 4 1/2 miles between the dam and Lake Solano so you really need to walk and hike to find the holes to fish. The flows dramatically effect how a area fishes so check the flows every time you go and before you leave the house.  I use Dreamflows so you can develop a sense of how an area fishes at a given flow, Remember it takes some time but it is one of many factors that help me when I'm thinking whether or not to fish on a given day.


Remember to adjust your leader length, indicator size and amount of weight as flows change.

Flys: As always, one of my go-to flys is the Cravens JuJu Baetis and or WD40 I found gray a great choice. Black Soft Hackle with green foil body. That got immediate results and of course a Black Zebra Midge is a must have. 

Of course there are many great flys to choose from and I have surely forgotten to list a few so definitely ask the guys at Lost Coast Outfitters for some help 

* Mending;  One thing I've noticed time and time again is clients over mending or mending in the wrong direction throwing huge mends the the left as soon as the Indi hits the water, Not necessary, try making smaller adjustments as needed or doing a shorter cast and keeping you'r arm elevated to minimize the amount of line on the water 

Environmental Factors:Time of Day, Seasons, Weather, Fires and floods. Flows; (cfs) Check Check Dream Flow.

The Quail Fire

* Fires,  As most of you know we had another huge fire again last summer and you would think it          would have negative effect on the fishing. Nope Think again! I was on the creek the day it started and was actually guiding a husband and wife from Texas well my clients got nervous and left. So not wanting to let a little fire ruin a good day of fishing I stayed and fished and had an awesome day on the water. 

* Weather; Wind speaks for itself if the wind interferes with casting then I might adjust my day, or work     on my casting Proper casting mechanics helps by properly loading the rod and staying low and under the                                          main gusts of wind and increasing accuracy and distance. ( I can help with proper casting during a guided trip ). 

*Time of Day; Time of day effects where the sun is so I will adjust where I stand so the sun doesn't cast my shadow on the water if at all possible. also I do really well mid day but in July Augest its so hot mid day this no longer applies and I fish mornings or dusk to avoid midday heat. I think it drives fish down reduces fish in the riffles until dusk when things turn on that last hour or so of the day. 

* Time of Year; Spring is probably my favorite with Fall a close second. 

* Euro Nymphing  I really started spending more time looking at my leader construction and how to fish water not  effectively fished with an indicator and was stunned by the results a month after the Quail fire in August.

I hope this helps and gives you something to think about when you're on the water.

For available dates or pricing for a guided trip with me, contact; Richard Loft, Napa Valley Fly Guides, (707) 294-4738;

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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report
Rob Russell Reports on 10.8.20 
    The creek continues to provide great opportunity for anglers as we enter the fall. The current flows of 300 cubic feet per second are very comfortable, safe, and great for fishing. The recent fire has also opened much of the bank access in areas previously inaccessible. Exploring areas further from access points is not only really fun, but can be extremely productive. 
     Fishing has been fair to good with many great fish caught on mostly nymphs and streamers. Streamers are rapidly becoming popular as the tug is indeed the drug here at the creek. The swung fly down and across, followed by a rapid retrieve, will often change the mind of the most devout nympher. For nymphs: the standard, cold tailwater fare of smaller bugs; i.e., midges, mayflies and caddis in size 14-22, will get eaten.
     A favorite time of the year with cooler weather and perfect flows, Putah Creek is a truly special place in the fall. Dates available now through the end of November. Contact below. Cheers folks!
Rob Russell Fly Fishing 
Santa Rosa, CA
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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report
Rob Russell Reports on 3.10.2020
What an incredible opening week! Putah fished well for my guests last week and should continue to provide great fishing into the spring. Flows have more than doubled since the opener, with a perfect 200ish cfs of clear, cold water creating ideal conditions for fish and flyfishers alike. Dam releases will continue to fluctuate with the weather as the first warm spell will usually see the first big increases, slowly rising to the 500-600 cfs high flows of July.
We have seen some early mayfly hatches with fish feeding on top during record warmth early last week. These conditions don't last long at Putah, but the observant may have seen large pods of big fish, lazily slurping bugs throughout the day... Midges, present subsurface, are extremely important all year at Putah. Although extremely small, sizes 22-26, prolific hatches occur every month of the season providing a huge amount of readily available calories and protein for these unusually chunky trout.
Nymphing will get you tight to some beautiful fish now, however don't be afraid to mix it up and most of all fish the technique you enjoy most! I cannot think of a technique that will not occasionally work at Putah, although I have not tried mousing, yet.
The basic two-fly indicator rig, dead drifted through the runs and riffles will catch fish. Small and dark flies on light tippet nearly always gets some attention. Mend, mend, mend. A completely "dead" presentation is important as the trout will track your fly in the gin clear water, looking for any movement added to them by a less than perfect drift.
With perfect weather and ideal flows, spring is amazing at Putah Creek. Give a call or email for guided trip details. Hope to hear from you soon to take advantage of some great fishing. Dates available in March, April, May... November. Thanks and Cheers! 
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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Richard Loft Reports on 2.08.2020

Hey Everyone Just checking in with current Putah Creek; Flows and other fishy news 

Tailwater flows are still bouncing  between 44cfs and low 80s so I am just watching and waiting for weather to warm up when the flows will follow as things warm-up, Water temp around 56 deg, I was at Putah last week and saw really nice hatches of midges and the occasional BWO so I will be keeping a close eye on things and give more reports as things evolve; 

Also, I noticed that the fish have left the  spawning beds so I think the spawn has mostly finished but be careful when wadding so we don't step on those eggs or fry and think about joining and get to know a few of the guys we do a picnic once a year plus there is always opportunities to help with conservation efforts on the creek

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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Richard Loft Reports on 11.21.2019

Hey Everyone Flows have been supper low at 51cfs then up to 82cfs then back down jumping back up to 140 and up again to 180cfs Well A common belief I have heard so many times before is these type of fluctuations negativly effect the fishing. Funny Thing is fishing has been Really Good lately and it goes with my personal experience on Putah Creek and other rivers like the Little Truckee. It is my belief that first  I need to just adjust my Tactics before I leave a run I happen to be fishing, Changing my weight is one of the first things then moving on to flys, Then leader length, I might spend two hours without a fish before moving on to another run if I like my drift and like the scenery Other times I may move on right away due to conditions not being favorable such as super heavy hydraulics or glare on the water making it difficult to see my indicator or I may just go to a larger indicator but I will most often find another spot if glare makes it too difficult to see my indicator because there are too many other options

Top Action
I don't know if anyone else has noticed but I am seeing a lot more fish actively feeding on really small Emergers maybe Tricos or something I don't know for sure they seem to be very small maybe size #22 I am seeing mostly small fish on the drys but I have heard of much larger fish in the 20 in range and I landed a little13in on a #14 Elk Hair Caddis

 Finally I want to mention that I am bringing my 10.6 4 wt Echo Shadow II it first it was just a pain getting the leader just right then it was to long or short but after a year of working with it off and on I seem to be getting better results picking up fish my Indicator rig misses so consider looking at getting one of the rods out there

Here is a few of I would recommend

Any of the Echo series I have the  Echo Shadow II 10.6 4wt But any of these other rods will do the trick the idea is to get more reach so just ask any of the gang at the LCO shop and I am sure you will find one that will do here are a few more but at the end of the day any one of these will do Just ask a staff person for a peak    : A Sage ESN or one of the Clearwater series .  The rod gives you the reach and the fly punches you through

 As for flys I have been using the Tungston Beadhead fly and have been getting some super nice fish

Heres a few flys have used for high sticking on Putah don't worry about the fly as much as getting the one your using on the bottom with a good presentation you need to get some penetration on and get through to fish holding on the bottom

I have been using the
#18 BH Perdigon Zibra Rider
#16 BH Perdigon Dilated Pupil 
#14 BH Perdigon Carrot Stix
and a few more for good messure are :
#18 BH Perdigon Peanut
# 18 BH Perdigon Kilowatt

There are many to choose from don't get stuck on having the perfect fly just get some fly and get on the water and see what clicks and go from there

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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Richard Loft Reports on 11.10.2019

Hey everyone I just wanted to check in and report that flows are between 53.7 and 88 cfs pretty normal for this time of year , but fishing has held steady with good numbers to net all last month and so far November is still producing good numbers and a few really big fish in the system willing to play ball if your willing to put in the time as always Putah Creek is and has always been a river to fish  with it being only forty minutes from my house I get lots of practice. Over the last few weeks I have been really focusing on getting more familiar with high sticking and with these low flow conditions it seems to be a great option with low flows it helps present a much cleaner drift but the big fish seem to be holding in the deeper runs . With that I am out so I look forward to seeing you on the creek and look for me and Rusty my constant companion and best friend

Richard  and Rusty

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Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Putah Creek Fly Fishing Report

Jordan Romney Reports on 9.12.19

The creek is currently running out of 400cfs. That is still a bit high for the time of year but that has more to do with the hot weather. Look for the flows to start dropping a bit in the next few days to weeks. It’s still fishing pretty well, last weeks trips out there produced some solid hookups and a few quality fish. There is a good grab on bwo nymphs size 18 or 20. I really like slim profile with out a lot of color or flash. They tend to get grabbed more then the normal pheasant tails or generic. I am also not a believer in gold bead head flies on the creek. The fish see so many of them that they are more of a deterrent then an attractor. The midge bite is on too, look past the zebra midge. Do some research on patterns to either tie up or head to Lost Coast Outfitters

Don’t be afraid do drown a dry fly midge. Those are usually my “go to” patterns. Make sure to bring some cash with you if you plan to park at the main access. The iron rangers are back out and they cost $10 for the day. You can get an annual pass if you plan on fishing there regularly. The pressure will start to increase as the flows start to drop. Keep an open mind and communicate with other anglers while out there. Ask before you tread if you see someone fishing ahead of you.

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