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Yuba River Fly Fishing Report

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Hogan Brown, Hogan Brown Fly Fishing

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Lower Yuba River - I had a Lost Coast Outfitters clinic on the Lower Yuba River this weekend on Saturday. The river conditions were ideal with a slight flow increase and a little color to the water due to Friday’s rains. Most of the day was spent on instruction, but there was some fishing in the afternoon and a few people stayed after and caught some fish nymphing. Saw more skwalas out on the rocks then I have seen all year and even saw a few fish rise to them. Hatches were limited from what I saw other then the sporadic skwala rise. Spent a bunch of time seining the river and there a TON of olive free living caddis in the water, that said I have struggled to catch fish on olive caddis patterns lately. Other bugs in the drift were aquatic worms and light olive baetis in a #16-18. The river finally blew out last night (Monday night) and has gone up to 2236 cfs coming out of Englebright and 147cfs coming out Deer Creek. Deer Creek is dropping and should be fine in a few days while the release at Englebright should drop over the next few days as well. The river needed this flushing and “mixing up” of things. Hopefully the flows will stay up a bit for awhile as this last storm cycles through the system and not just drop back down to 550cfs. Then on the long range forecast it looks like another storm is coming in so HOPEFULLY we may have seen the last of the federal minimum flows of 550cfs…we can hope. 

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Dave Barbieri, Dave Barbieri Guide Service
Before I give this Yuba River report, let me just say that the river has been extremely crowded. I mean packed with people. More people than Skwalas, PMDs, and BWOs, combined. Ok, that might be exaggerating a little. But not much. Even though it has been crowded, we have still been having good, to very good dry fly fishing. Except for the day right before the big storm, that was very slow.  

Fish have been taking Skwala Stoneflies, PMDs, and BWOs. The river was flowing at about 550 cfs before the storm. Right now, flows at the Hwy 20 bridge are at 2500 cfs. Flows for Deer Creek right now are at 100 cfs, which means that they are releasing 2400 cfs out of Englebright Dam. Not sure why they are releasing so much, unless it’s just flowing right over the top. Either way, I do not recommend wading the river at these flows, unless you are a very strong wader. Even then, the Yuba at 2500 cfs is very strong and dangerous. I would recommend fishing from the bank, or from a boat.

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