Monday, January 21, 2013

Post Weekend Report

Spent a few days on the L. Yuba this weekend and fishing was fair. Good numbers of fish and a few nice ones mixed in. Flows have been stable at around 1900cfs though are going to drop to 1700cfs the morning of Jan 24. Clarity is 4-5’ and only in the deeper water is there any remaining color to the river. I found the fish to be spread out in their typical winter haunts. Most of our fish came in the flat water or slower water below runs. As the skwalas get active they should move into some faster water…that is assuming there are still some around after the sustained high water earlier this winter. Most of our fish came on attractor egg patterns, smaller rubber legs, and small mayfly nymphs like S&M’s, Flash back PT’s, and such. I did fish skwala dries for a few runs midday and rose one fish. I did see a handful of fish rise through out the day, but they seemed to be in more May fly water …. Flats and slower water. I did see some smaller baetis flying around, but nothing that I would call a hatch. I did not see one skwala and even got out and turned some rocks over looking for them with no success. That said it is a bit early ESPECIALLY with all the cold weather. I think with these warmer days the hatch should get going in the next week or so.

On the Lower Sac the caddis should start getting going with a few more weeks of warm weather as well. Spring is getting close!!!

I have a few days open over the next few weeks if anyone is interested in getting out on the L. Sac or Lower Yuba.

Jan 26
Feb 2, 9, 16

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Good and the Bad...

We will start with the bad news…As many may now know local California tier, guide, conservationist Bill Carnazzo passed away early this week. While I would not consider myself one of Bill’s good friends I would consider us long time acquaintances…well over a decade. This industry is small and if you work in it for any amount of time you run into everyone at one time or the other. Bill was a huge advocate for out sport, he taught tons of people how to fish the freestone streams of the Sierra Nevada’s and inter mountain region. His tight line nymphing technique is one of the best ways I know of to fish rivers like the North Fork Yuba, North Fork Feather, Upper Sac, Pit, McCloud, and really any river with big rocks, fast water, and trout. I remember the first times I met Bill were when I was working at Nevada City Anglers. He would come in with groups of people he was taking up fishing on the North Fork of the Yuba River. He seemed to be always sharing the sport and what he knew with people. He will be missed but I am sure never forgotten as long as people keep sharing what they learned from him.

In Good news …. Bill wrote a great piece (I think maybe one of his last) for his Fly tying column in California Fly Fishers on my Red Headed Step Child. If you have ever wanted to learn how to tie this fly check out the Jan 2013 issue of California Fly Fisher. Bill convinced me to spill the beans….

Also I have a feature article in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Northwest Fly Fishing on the North Fork Feather with some great photography by Kienes employee and my good friend Adam Grace. I have always said the north fork feather is the best-kept secret in the state of CA.

I also signed on to film a show of Fly Fishing the world with Conway Bowman this spring. Should be fun to take the Mako Shark king out trout fishing. More to come on how this goes and when the show will air

Sense we are on the trend of media I down loaded the new Pinback CD this week “Information Retrieved” from I tunes. I love these guys. They are a truly original band and one that while being very original is very accessible and has some catchy tunes. They play this Sunday at Harlow’s in Sacramento and I am going to try to get down to see them but we will have to see how things go with guiding and such. May have to rally as they are from New York so this is a pretty rare west coast non bay area appearance. 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Winter and Early Spring Guiding up date

The onslaught of late fall / early winter storms seems to have passed and the rivers and creeks are settling back to normal and getting on with winter fishing. There is plenty of water, and we are not seeing the low flows of mid winter that we have in previous winters.  With no big storms on the forecast winter hatches and fishing should be consistent for the next few weeks if not months.
The Lower Yuba has been stable for over a week now at 1900cfs and the clarity is perfect with a bit of color. There are a few winter steelhead in the system and with the higher then normal flows more and more should show up over the next 2 months. Skwala Stonefly hatches should start to get going as the weather is suppose to
warm up over the next week and the baetis hatches should get going as well with maybe even a few early march browns. This is a great time of year, as long as the weather stays stable, to swing flies, nymph, and fish dries all in the same day.
The Lower Sacramento River is back to fishable clarity and cranking out its normal big winter fish. I have spent a fair amount of days over the last month on the upper floats on the sac and hooked some of the biggest rainbows of the year. We are
not hooking huge numbers of fish but plenty of action throughout the day with some big fish in the mix. Fishing should remain good over the next few weeks. If we start to get some of that early warm February weather the spring caddis hatches will start up and move into March,which is one of the best months of the year on the Lower Sac.
Butte Creek will remain open until Feb 15 and with any rain the river will jump up again to floatable flows, but for right now the flows are at perfect wade fishing flows. There are good numbers of fish throughout the creek and fishing so far this season has been very good.
Feather River spring steelhead fishing usually gets going in March and if the fall run was any indication of how the spring run will be it should be a great year. Spring is a great time to swing flies on switch rods or light spey rods along with nymphing. I have both Scott and Echo switch and light spey rods for anglers to use if they want to try this style of fishing.
I have raised my rates for 2013 to $425 for a full day and
$325 for a half day and I still have a few winter and early spring dates open:
Jan 20, 21, 26
Feb 2, 3, 9, 16,
March 16, 17, 23, 24, 31

Friday, January 11, 2013

Pre Weekend Report

I spent a few days out over the last week on the L. Yuba and L. Sac.

The lower Yuba has been stable for over a week now around 1900cfs and clarity is improving everyday. These are great flows and with a little color fishing is better then if the water is gin clear. At this flow there is some wade water open to wade fishermen but not a ton.

Fish seem to have adjusted to the flows and moved into normal holding water though are still not keyed on the normal bugs for this time of year. Most fish we caught were on egg patterns, rubber legs, and worm patterns. I fished smaller mayflies and such with no success. I am sure though as the water clears and the baetis and skwala hatches get going smaller mayfly nymphs will start to catch some fish. I know a few guys have started throwing skwala dries with no luck but I am sure it is going to be getting going soon.

The Lower Sac is back in good enough shape and fishing was good this past week. Not huge numbers of fish but great size. The clarity is still marginal up high but the lower you get down the river the better the clarity gets. We ended up hooking some really nice trout on egg patterns and rubber legs. I tried to fish some smaller mayfly nymphs and caught a few fish on Hunch Back PT's.

Both the lower Sac and Lower Yuba should start to stabilize and with no significant rain in the forecast should stay stable for a while. Winter fishing over the next 2 months should be really good on these rivers.

Butte Creek is stable around 360-400cfs and clear. These are great wading flows but a bit low to float so I have not been on the creek recently.

Notre Dame did a bit worse then I expected ... When your team gets slaughtered on national television like mine did you take some flack. I was dissapointed, but I was not expecting to win the game. I thought it would be close, but Alabama would win out in the end...I did not think we would get steam rolled. Bottom line is we were un-ranked going into the season and 8-5 the last two years so going 12-1 and losing the national championship game is a huge improvement. I watched the whole game and will be a fan my entire life any fan rides the ups and the downs that is what a fan does. Furthermore, I never would of thought that the Giants and the Irish would be playing for their respective titles in the same season...Great year for my teams.

Here is some fish porn from the last week ...

Sac piggy

Sac Trout

Deep Sac fish

Nice Yuba fish

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Butte Creek...

The one place I get to fish the most in the winter is a little local tributary to the sac that gets a decent steelhead run and has a fair native trout population in various stretches. It is roughly 5-10mins outside of chico and can be waded or floated in a raft depending on the flows. It is a true steelhead river where flows rise and drop with rain and can do so pretty quickly so timing like most things in life is everything.

Yesterday I had the day off due to a cancelation and I have been wanting to try the lower float on the river which requires a bit of a sketchy take out, so I called a good friend of mine and we headed to the creek with raft in tow about noon. River was gin clear and had been dropping steadily for about a week. Our goals was to float the lower stretch to the diversion dam and hopefully run into some fresh fish that moved up over the dam with the last rain. Fishing started slow but by about half way through the float we started to run into some fish and it seemed for about 5-7 runs we hit a fish every run. By the end we had to row through some of the best runs as I had promised my wife a nice steak dinner for new years eve and light was getting at a premium. We ended up landing 5 fish and all hovered around the 16-20" range and one was a nice female full of eggs. Ended up BBQing with my head lamp but it was a great way to spend the afternoon and the take out was easier then I had thought...though it does require two people. Here are some pics...

Pretty special Place
Nice Fat Male

rowing can be a little dicey with all the obstacles but all part of the fun

Nice Female

Continue on my friend