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Skwala Nymph

Skwala Nymph

Generally found in swift water, but is also known to hang around the edges of deeper pools due to its desire for cold water. 

Similarly to other stoneflies, the Skwala lives anywhere from 2-4 years in the water in its nymphal stage. 

When fishing a Skwala nymph it is very important to get your flies down right on the bottom.  This is partially due to the fish being down deep in the colder parts of the year but mostly has to do with the Skwala’s clinging nature.  They cling to the bottom of the river and only become accessible to the trout when brushed downstream by a surge of water.  So they never stray very far from the bottom.


Similarly to other stoneflies, the Skwala lives anywhere from 2-4 years in the water in its nymphal stage. 

When fishing a Skwala nymph it is very important to get your flies down right on the bottom.  This is partially due to the fish being down deep in the colder parts of the year but mostly has to do with the Skwala’s clinging nature.  They cling to the bottom of the river and only become accessible to the trout when brushed downstream by a surge of water.  So they never stray very far from the bottom.

Like other stoneflies the Skwala stonefly doesn’t swim up to the surface to emerge. When the water hits around 42 degrees this insect scurries across the rocky bottom and crawls out of the river onto some form of rocky shore, or overhanging foliage to emerge from its exoskeleton.

Since these stoneflies are terrible swimmers, right before emergence is a great time to fish banks and other edges with a Skwala nymph, since the fish will be stacked up anticipating a conveyer belt of clumsy stonefly nymphs tumbling down their way. So make sure to cast at the bank before walking straight into the water!

Fishing Tactics:

One of the best known fisheries for the Skwala stonefly is the Yuba River in between Parks Bar and Englebright Reservoir. This section of water is known for its hard fighting, healthy rainbows and this is one of the few times of year where even the big fish will be looking up for their next meal.  Another colder option for amazing Skwala fishing would be the Truckee river, where I would mostly focus on fishing the nymph stage with the occasional switch to a Skwala dry. Many of California’s mountain streams like the Truckee and Feather have Skwala Stones.

Our Favorite Skwala Nymph Patterns


Patagonia Stealth Atom Fly Fishing Sling Pack 15L - Light Bog

Sling Packs

Socks And Gloves

Socks And Gloves

OPST Lazer Running Line

Spey Lines

Rio Tippet Rings

Split Shot, Swivels and Rings

Spring Six

Here are some test images of flies.
Burnt Chicken - Black

Steelhead Flies

Steelhead Swing Flies

Steelhead Swing Flies

Filson Flask

Stocking Stuffer

Striper Flies

Striper Flies

Striper Gear

Striper Gear

Do you find yourself strapped for time? The pressures of work and family keeping you from your passion.  Don't you wish there was fish closer to home so you didn't have to sacrifice a whole weekend to get your fix. The local striper fishing has been a god send for us when we can't swing a whole weekend and not even a whole day. The bay from Crissy field to Petaluma is teaming with Stripers. Peak season for the bay is September through Thanksgiving and March through the end of May.
Stripping Baskets

Stripping Baskets

Stripping baskets are an essential tool for fly fishing in the surf. We figure we are 2 to 3 times more effective with a stripping basket than without. Below are our favorite stripping baskets for fly fishing the surf.
Simms BugStopper Hoody-Mineral

Sun Shirts

Cablz Retainers


Lost Coast Outfitters Surf Lanyard

Surf Fishing Accessories

One of the beautiful things about surf fishing is it does not require too much gear a pair of nippers, pliers, a stripping basket, rod, reel, line, some 20 or 25lb tippet, and a couple of flies. Here are a few items that have made our surf lives better.
Surf Flies

Surf Flies

We love fly fishing California's beaches, bays, and coastline. Below is a selection of our favorite flies. Not only do we offer a wide range of universal patterns for the salt, but mostl of our flies are custom tied locally for our specific fishery

Surf Fly Lines

Here is our selection of best fly lines for fly fishing the surf.  We sell both integrated line systems as well as shooting head systems.  Keep in mind that if you go with a shooting head system you'll need to purchase a running line as well.  In the surf we prefer the versatility of a shooting head system because it allows you to switch head systems between varied sink rates while still using just one spool and reel.
Hatch 7 Plus Gen II Fly Reel

Surf Fly Reels

Here's our selection of the best fly reels for fishing the surf at any price point.  Keep in mind that the saltwater you will be battling takes it's toll on a reel so we highly recommend going with a fully-sealed drag system.  That being said many a striper have been caught on the Redington Behemoth
Beulah Opal Saltwater Switch Fly Rod 5/6 11ft

Surf Fly Rods

In the years we have been fishing the surf we realized that not all fly rods are good for tackling the beaches. So, here's our selection of the best fly rods for fishing the surf at any price point.  We enjoy fishing both single and double handed rods out on our beaches.  Keep in mind that there are some days out there when the wind is just too much for a single hand setup, but with that extra length of a two handed setup you can more efficiently punch your flies through the gusts. 
Rio Powerflex Tapered Leader 3-Pack

Tight Line Rig

There a million names for rig and as many ways to tie it but this is the one I have success with here in Nor Cal. The way you fish this rig is to cast upstream and let the rig sink. Gently lift up until you "find the weight." Then begin lowering the rig down into the water until you find the bottom or are fishing at your desired depth. Generally, you will want to lead or slightly drag the weight downstream. This will provide max feeling when you get a grab. To tie this rig you will need -




    Let's start with the question "what is tippet?" Well, simply put , tippet is the thinnest part of your leader and is typically sold on a spool. Tippet is the one of the most critical components to fishing. There are two major groups of tippet. First is nylon tippet, sometimes called "mono." Nylon tippet floats, knots easily, and is fairly inexpensive. Nylon can go bad and expire after a few years. Nylon is best for dry flies and when fishing fast moving water. The other type of tippet is Fluorocarbon which is very abrasion resistant and sinks. Fluoro is best for nymph fishing or for wary fish, as it goes nearly invisible when it goes underwater.  Fluorocarbon also never goes bad which is why you should always make sure to hang on to the bits and pieces when building your rig. Pack it in, pack it out! For California trout fishing you should have 3x,4x,5x and 6x (rarely used except on slow moving clear water situations like Hat Creek and Fall River.) We tend to use a lot more fluorocarbon than we do nylon. I most often fish nylon when fishing streamers and large dry flies. We have fished all over the world with the tippets below and wanted for nothing.
    Rubber Legs - Black

    Top 10 Spring Flies

    Spring is a magical time of year for a fly angler. With over 20 years of fishing often in the spring, a pattern has emerged. Below is a list of some of my go-to flies for fishing northern California and beyond.
    Trout Flies

    Trout Flies

    Umpqua Tailgater Organizer  - 1

    Umpqua Luggage

    C&F Design Rod Stand

    Vehicle Accessories

    Simms Wading Staff - Retractor included

    Wading Accessories

    Patagonia Foot Tractor Wading Boots - Aluminum (Built by Danner)

    Wading Boots

    Let's face it, fly fishing environments, whether in the swift currents of classic Atlantic salmon water or on the deck of a blue water marlin boat, are wet environments, and wet environments are slippery environments. You simply can't overlook the importance of selecting appropriate wading boots and sandals in your search for the right fly fishing gear. At Lost Coast Outfitters, we stock a wide selection of beefy, studded wading boots, along with light deck sandals, stable wet-wading footwear and versatile water sneakers from Simms Fishing Products, Patagonia, Redington, Fishpond, and Danner. Through our own personal field testing, we have found these wading boots and sandals to be the very best in the industry year after year. Setting foot into a rapidly moving aquatic environment certainly is a joy, and boarding a striper boat to cruise the near shore for bait balls is Nirvana, but without the proper footwear, these experiences can turn sour with one strong pull of line and a step in the wrong direction. Avoid the spills, sprains, and run-ins with swift currents by choosing the right pair of wading boots or sandals.

    Wading Socks

    Simms Wading Staff - Retractor included

    Wading Staffs

    Fishpond Switchback Wading Belt System

    Waist Packs

    Simms Dry Creek Boat Bag - Medium

    Waterproof Bags

    Simms G4 Wading Jacket

    Waterproof Fly Fishing Gear

    Waterproof Fly Fishing Gear
    Coastal Steelhead survive of the heavy rain falls the winter brings. From California's Eel river up to BC's coastal rivers, rainfall spikes the flows and provides access to the rivers small tributaries. If you are a Steelhead angler you know the challenge of keeping yourself and your gear dry. Below is a select list of waterproof fly fishing gear designed for the wettest conditions.


    Simms Intruder Boot - Rubber

    Wet Wading

    Simms Women's Drifter Pant - Mineral

    Women's Fly Fishing Apparel

    Patagonia Womens Capilene Air Crew

    Women's Fly Fishing Gear

    Women's Fly Fishing Gear
    Simms Women's Vaportread Boot - Rubber

    Women's Wading

    Rambler 14oz Mug

    Yeti Coolers

    Redington Crosswater Youth Wader

    Youth Waders & Boots

    Redington Crosswater Youth Wader

    Youth Wading