Thursday, May 22, 2014

Friday Eve Reports and Ramblings

So things are getting nice up here in Nor Cal. Spring/early summer is such a nice time of year. Tons of options for fishing, nice warm days with cool evenings…shorts, flip flops, and light sweatshirts in the morning and evening.  I have been spending most of my time on the Sacramento River outside of chico chasing Shad, Largemouth, Smallmouth, and stripers.

Lower Sac Shad Report – Shad are in and fishing has been pretty darn good on most nights. I have been mainly fishing out of the boat on anchor but there are some spots where anglers can wade fish for shad. I know the waders who have access to Rd.48 have been doing pretty good and people that have been accessing the river via Annie Bidwell State Park have been catching fish. Most fish are on the smaller side, mainly males, but I have caught two large females so far. The best bite seems to be about 5-630ish and has been going pretty cold by 7pm. Hot colors have been pink and hot yellow on a 240-250 grain integrated shooting head.

Big Mamma Shad

Bent rod on some afternoon shad
Bass and Stripers – Largemouth and smallmouth bass fishing has been good when the weather is stable. We have some fronts move in and this can mess with the fish as well as bring some serious wind and temperature swings. Was out on the river last night for about an hour amidst wind, thunder, lightening, and rain – still managed one blow up and a follow by possibly the biggest largemouth I have ever seen on the river…easy 8-10lb fish. Striper fishing has gotten pretty tight with the shad around but with the full moon there were guys pulling all-nighters throwing big swim baits that caught some nice fish.

Lower Sac Trout – floated from Anderson to Balls Ferry and fishing was pretty decent. Flows are up around 7500cfs so there much more water to fish and a longer float is not a bad idea. I back rowed a lot on Anderson to Balls while many guides were going from Anderson to Barge Hole. Caddis were the main menu item with fish coming on birds nest, Fox poopa, Yuba Pupa, the Amber Wing Rabbit , along with rubber legs.  Most fish were caught midday during the caddis hatch and averaged about 16”.

Yuba River – Have not been on the river in the last week but the flows have been dropping over the last few days from 1700 down to 1117. Not sure how low the river is going to drop.

The Giants – I am loving watching the Giants over the last few weeks…I had a bit of with-drawls last night as they had their first day off in 17 days or so. They are back at it tonight though in Colorado for a short mid week road trip to the Rocky Mountains. It has been great to see Pablo and Vogelsong come out of their early season slumps. Pablo is batting .389 over the last 9 games and Vogelsong has 1.62 ERA over his last 5 outings…Injuries are a bit of a concern with Hudson missing a start, Pagan getting a shoulder MRI, but that is part of the game. The next weeks schedule is pretty favorable after 3 games on the road with the Rockies we are home for 4 games with the Twins and 3 games with the Cubs, both sub or even .500 teams.

Tunes  – There is something about re-discovering bands or just putting on an old album you haven’t listened to in a while that was “your album” for a very seminal part of your life. I have been listening to some old Drive By Truckers discs lately, mainly Decoration Day and the Dirty South…These albums were literally never out of my CD player for the better part of a year and I could sing every song on them word for word. During my mid 20’s these albums were like a best friend, a sound track to everything I felt, was going through, or strived to be…as the band went in different directions or members left I kinda drifted from these albums discovering other bands and genres that I connected with. I put Decoration Day in the other day and it was like seeing an old friend…all the feelings, camaraderie, and singing out loud came back…Sunshine, shad, stripers, cold beer, and drive by truckers.

BBQ – I spend a lot of time on the grill this time of year. I have a gas, charcoal, and smoker that get a ton of use this time of year.  One of the simplest recipes my wife turned me on to is ranch blue cheese burgers. Get yourself some good ground beef, dump it in a bowl, put a packet of ranch dip mix in, and a tub of blue cheese – mash up, make patties, and enjoy. I prefer to top my burger with a nice thick piece of bacon and some grilled jalapenos.

Fermented liquid – My new river beer is Hams. Cheap, not bad tasting, and I can sweat it out.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Early Week Report

Early to mid week reports...lost of fishing this time of year. It has become really obvious that fishing is about 3-4 weeks early this year. If you are not getting out make it happen soon! Mid summer bass, striper, and carp fishing should be good and trout fishing on the tailwaters (L. Sac/L. Yuba) should be fine but I can't see the mountain trout stuff that is run off fed lasting all summer. May rivers and streams are spring fed and those should be Ok but run off based stuff...gonna get tight. 

North Fork Feather River off of Hwy 70 - Flows are low but water is cool and in great shape. Fishing throughout the Hwy 70 corridor is fair to good. Fish seem to be concentrated in certain areas, maybe coming off the spawn. We have been catching fish on small baetis and PMD patterns along with green drake nymphs and rubber leg patterns. There are a few green drakes around, LOTS of caddis, and a few smaller baetis and PMD's. We found fish eating caddis in some of the flats below riffles and even got a few nice fish swinging soft hackles with a small split shot. Best flies were S&M nymph, Brown Rubber Leg, #10 Prince Nymph (for the green drakes), and olive soft hackle. Most of the power houses that dump into the river are not up and running yet but I am sure with the heat this week will get on line which may change flows a bit in various stretches. 

Love this gave up some nice fish.

NF Feather Pocket water...most fish seemed to be in the riffles

there was a mess of fish in the green water slashing caddis adults

Water level on side swipe hook set

Lower Yuba River - Flows are still up around 1400cfs and fishing is fair. Most of the fish seem to have moved from water I was getting fish out of a week ago. Not sure if fish are moving up river to spawn or what but it as a struggle to find fish at times. There is some decent bug activity when the weather is right and the warm stable weather pattern this week should help the fishing and hatches out. Most of our fish came on smaller #18 mayfly nymphs and various tan caddis patterns. Not much surface action with the wind but I can imagine that dry fly fishing will improve over the next week. 

Lower Sac Shad/bass - It is on and fishing is good. On low water years it seems that fish arrive early on the Sac and do not head up the other rivers as well. We have been getting into fish most evenings, we are out both wade fishing and fishing off anchor. Bass fishing has been decent for largemouth and smallmouth, top water for largemouth and streamer fishing for smallies on sinking lines has been good. The stripers in the water I fish have gotten pretty tight lipped as they are I assume gorging on shad. 

Hooked up on an afternoon Shad

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Cancelation on Memorial Day weekend

Just had a client cancel on May 25 and 26 if anyone is interested. Great time for Yuba Trout, Sac Trout, Sac Shad and bass.