Sunday, May 31, 2009

No more sardines .... Striper Time

As I said earlier I am done on a personal level fishing for shad this year. I have never been a huge shad fan so it doesn't take long for me to move my attention to something else. Granted I understand while people love them and love to fish for them, I just guess I get bored easy....So me an my buddy jason went out striper fishing for a few hours yesterday between setting up for my sons first birthday today (yes he gets a fly rod for his first birthday). We hit two spots and hooked 9 fish landing 8. We also had a double which was cool. All of them were about 2-4lbs and a few were below the 18" "Keeper" mark but Stripers 15mins from your house in May is cool no matter how big they are. I expect it is going to be a great summer of striper fishing as I have never caught fish this early. Last year was amazing so I can only imagine what this summer will hold.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

tough...tough...tough...stinky ovesize sardines

Shad fishing was tough tonight. first of all the river was packed. What the hell don't people work on fridays. Who stays out until 900pm fishing and then gets up to go to work the next morning. In all seriousness the river was as crowded as I have ever seen. It was like every guy that bought a $20,000 boat in the last 3-5 years and never uses it decided to go out today. What ever...

Fishing was tough we found fish but all our grabs were really subtle and my client (only had one client today) had trouble hooking up. We did manage a few fish right at dark but from about 5-8pm I burned more gas than we hooked fish looking for willing fish. Bottom line is we had been doing well for a few days and must have just hit a dry spot. I am sure fishing will pick up again as more pods move our way. Personally I am done with shad. While I have shad dates on the books still and will guide them for shad plenty over the next few weeks my own fishing will turn to stripers. Good numbers from Butte City to Rd. 48 if you have a boat. Go fish life is to short not to. Over and out.

Monday, May 25, 2009


Had clients on the river again saturday night and the grab finally turned on again. Scratch out fish from about 4pm-6pm and then it started to pick up. By 715pm or so it was every cast. Also it was one of the first nights that we hit good numbers of bigger females. The first big spawn should be coming up soon as smaller males were following the females to the surface when we hooked them.

We have been hooking plenty of fish each night and having short stints of every cast hook ups but Saturday was a good hour or so of non stop action. By 9pm my clients were done and worn out.

Tomorrow I am going to go exploring a little lower in the river to look for some stripers as the last few times I have been out on my own I have caught a few and the migratory fish should be around and as the pulses of shad go through the resident fish should start feeding heavily.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Another day and a few more Shad...

Spent friday evening guiding for shad just south of chico. The evening started slow again, found a few fish but nothing that would be considered great fishing. Ran into some buddies that said they were on a pod for a while but had hit a bunch of spots before the one they were at and thrown up zeros. Went up around beer can beach and Scotty's.... looked like somthing out of Mad Max... there was sherif boats giving one point jetskiers pulled behind my boat and started jumping my wake....lotsa bikinis and dudes drinking keystone....nothing like graduation weekend....

We did finally run into some nice pods of fish. Again the bite seemed to start late about 7-730. Most of the fish were small to average size males. Gonna be back out on the river today and am gonna focus on some deeper holes early and move to the heads of pools and runs as the evening progresses and see if that helps the early bite. Still no huge females but keep scratching out good numbers each evening. Hot colors are chart and hot pink.

Friday, May 22, 2009


Had two clients out for an evening shad trip on Wednesday and the bite was fairly tough. Didn't get into a serious pod of fish until maybe 6pm and it was a small pod at that. The river had been on the drop all day so that was probably the cause. We ended up scratching out fair numbers but nothing compared to the numbers we were seeing earlier in the week.

The key was we found some small pods of fish moving behind snags and any current break in faster moving water. Most of the fish came on pink and chart. flies on 250 - 300 grain heads. Most anglers I talked to that day had similar evenings, back out the next two evenings with clients so we'll see how it goes.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


May 16 and 17

Spent saturday and sunday morning checking every shad spot on the river I know of and even tried a few new ones and found atleast a few fish at each one. There are not huge schools yet but each spot seems to hold a few fish. The most caught at one spot I heard of was about 12-14. If you move around and hit different spots or get luck and a big school moves through your spot you can rack some numbers. Most fish are coming on 250-300grain heads and flies with a ton of color...I am never one to believe there is a secret shad fly...the secret is putting it infront of a fish I think.

The water is still stained but fish don't seem to mind. I found some nice smallies in a few back waters but nothing red hot on the smallie bight. The flats are staring to clear up for carp but still not clear enough to fish for them. Found a few but by the time I saw them I was to close. LMB are off the beds and on the feed. Good numbers of bait, small bluegills, and other assorted fish are moving around the sloughs and LMB are chasing bait in the evening. There are a few stripers around but hard to tempt them with a clouser when they could eat a shad.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Fair numbers of shad are being caught around chico, ca even with off color water. Went out last night and hooked about half a dozen in about 45mins. Water is clearing and weather is suppose to be in the 90's this weekend. Fishing should explode in the next few weeks.

As water clears smallmouth and largemouth fishing should pick up as well.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Lower Yuba River 2 May 2009

IT PISSED RAIN ALL DAY!!!!!!! Woke up and saw Deer Creek was up to about 300cfs but the river hadn't moved more than a few CFS. I figured the river would be plenty fishable, but would have some color. Put the boat in about 8:30am and was a little surprised at how much color the river already had. By the time we ran the shuttle and my one client and me got in the boat the river was about 1' -2' of visibility. Definitely more than a little color. Switched to muddy water fly set ups....differently flies when the water is off color.... and started fishing some standard spots with no results. Adjusted the game plan and started fishing spots that fish get pushed when the water rises and clarity is compromised. Started picking up fish. We hooked about 10 landing 5, not a bad day for one angler, but not great...just good. Remember when flows rise, lines and the areas where fish hold get pushed towards the banks. Also remember sediment in the water is like standing in a smoke filled room for the fish....they want to find clean water. Look at the banks, shallow water, or deep water to get below the sediment. I would imagine the river will blow out tonight and be blown out for a few days. Trip tomorrow moved to the L. Sac....
Over and Out.
Hogan Brown