Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Cast Hope Event, Reports, Upcoming fishing, Light to moderate Alcohol consumption, and sports reports

Yes we need rain but gosh the weather has been beautiful...we need rain so bad and the weather has been so nice I have felt guilty enjoying the weather as I know its needs to be miserable with rain. That said there is no sense fighting or worrying about things we can't control, like the weather...though I worry anyway.

CAST HOPE: Beer, Sliders, and Wings at the Pub! 
Cast Hope is hosting an "After Party" on Saturday Feb 21 at Handles Gastro Pub in Old Town Pleasanton (855 Main St. Pleasanton) from 4-8pm after The Fly Fishing Show this weekend. Tickets are $20 and $10 with Fly Fishing Show ticket stub. This includes food and more Beer than you can drink and legally operate machinery or an automobile. 

There will be AN AMAZING raffle and silent auction with some ridiculously cool stuff! Cast Hope will have a booth at the Show and be selling tickets there so stop by and see us and hope to see everyone at the event! 

For more information, to bid on an item online, or buy raffle tickets (you need not be present at the event to win) visit the web site HERE

Nice Yuba 18"er from this weekend

Lower Yuba RiverSpent the last 4 days or so on the Lower Yuba River guiding clients. Fishing was fair to good depending on the day it seemed and the mood of the fish. Water clarity is about 2' with a nice green tint and flows are at 750cfs. Fish seemed to be podded up, atleast actively feeding fish, and working a run that has fish in it I found to be the key. Our "grabs" came all at ounce in certain runs and then not at all for a while. Bug activity was pretty good but really mixed MANY different types of mayflies were out...a few march browns, PMD's, Baeits, Brown Drakes...and I am sure some more I didn't know. Skwalas are about done as the ones I did see were spent on the water after laying eggs and I did not see any in the rocks. I also saw a decent number of caddis and fish eating the caddis at times. They are the small early spring tan body dark winged caddis, like a number #16...For flies I couldn't find any pattern day to day or even throughout the day. Fish were caught on march brown nymphs, baetis nymphs, olive caddis pupa, red copper johns, rubber legs, and a few different egg patterns. I switched patterns up ALOT trying to find a pattern and the pattern seem to be there was none, seemed more important to find feeding and willing fish. Dry fly fishing was poor on most days I think based on the clarity but we did get a few fish to bump a low riding skwala pattern. Tried fishing caddis and mayfly dries with no luck, that said I never did find consistently rising fishing just typical yuba one and done fish. 

Upcoming Fishing
Hard to forecast much with regards to fishing as so much of it is water dependent but here is a try...

Lower Yuba River: Fishing should stay fair to good throughout the spring but really how things go depends on if we get some rain. Low Flows (below 1000cfs) are brutal on the Yuba as the fish see a TON of pressure so the fish can get pretty moody.

Lower Sacramento River Trout: Clarity is the issue here and as long as we get the rain we need that will remain an issue as the lake muddies up. That said from what I have heard clarity is getting better on the upper river, but that is a double edge sword as better clarity will mean we are not getting the rain we need. March is usually one of the best months of the year to fish the Lower Sac so we will see...

Lower Feather Spring Steelhead: March through mid May is best out here and this is going to be a good year hopefully if water conditions can improve a bit. Swinging flies is my method of choice out here on the switch rods as I have found over the last 3 years these fish will eat a swung fly just as well as they will a nymph on most days.

Striper, Shad, and Bass: Spring is prime bass time and the shad should be right around the corner from that as well as the migratory and resident striper fishing. This fishing is probably the easiest to predict as flows on the Sac are going to be stable and low most of the spring and summer no matter what we get for water as dams and pumps will be working over time hold or store what ever water we get...Clarity can be an issue but with stripers clarity is not much of an issue in my opinion, Shad clarity can be an issue and bass on the rivers clarity is a mild concern.
- Shad fishing will kick into gear early to mid May and last through mid June
- Migratory striper fishing will kick into gear mid March through Mid May
- Resident striper fishing can kick into gear Mid march but mid June through september is prime time.

Open Dates:
May 2, 3, 9, 16, 17, 23-25,
June 6-18, 22, 25-30,
July 1, 6-12, 14-24
August 4-9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30

Sports News...
Such a great time of year! I got the recruiting issue of Blue and Gold Magazine with all the news on the Notre Dame recruits and impending quarterback controversy/competition between Golson and Zaire...Going to be a great spring practice and game this year. I am not sure who I am pulling for I think the 6-0, last second loss to Fl St. Golson can lead us to the playoffs but the 22 turnovers Golson of the last half of the season that made me want to jump of the hey 20 bridge could kill me if I have to watch another season of that...Zaire is a stud and runs like a horse but it is very clear from what I have seen he doesn't have the arm or knowledge of the Offense that Golson does .... I don't I just want to win and not watch us throw games away like we did ALL second half of last season. 
Two Great things...beginning of baseball and spring football at ND

Also in sporting news TODAY IS THE DAY! pitchers and catchers report for the SF Giants and our World Series Defending season....I know nothing really happens for a few weeks and spring training games are really not the regular season but atleast I can read, listen to talk about, and follow baseball again. The NBA makes me sick and college basketball is fun and I follow ND basketball, who is tearing it up this season, I just can't get into basketball like I do baseball. I have no predictions about the giants this year as my mantra is "Trust in Bochy"...I am curious though to see how Pagan, Cain, Timmy, Hudson, Vogie, Belt, Panik and SO many other players show other news looks like Pablo showed up in shape to boston camp...

designated hitter written all over that physique
Light to Moderate Alcohol Consumption I have quite drinking for the most part. No beer. Way to many calories and in my quest to loose weight I can't do it...beers are like potato chips, I can't have just one...not like I am going to throw back a 6 pack every night but I could have a nice IPA or 3 every night or so if I let myself as I LOVE good beer. That said I did get a few nice bottles of scotch over the holidays and I have let me self enjoy ONE glass or small sniffer of these a few times over the last few months. Macallan 12 and Four Roses are the two I have been enjoying the most...Four Roses is a new one to me and was a gift from a good friend. It is REALLY GOOD! 

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Storm, Rock and Roll, and Haymakers Punch.

Here comes the storm…
So the storm is coming today and in some areas it may already be here. We need the rain bad and it seems funny how this year we may get our water and snow pack in big storms not steady medium to small storms…what ever I’ll take what we can get. Here some reports and what is coming up…
 Lower Yuba River – I have been on the Lower Yuba River a lot lately. Flows have been as low as I have ever seen for a while now, 550cfs. Fishing has been tough but rewarding. Low and clear flows create  challenging fishing, but I will say the fish we are catching are good quality fish. Most days we are nymphing, fishing dry flies, and swinging flies with some success. With the low flows I have been getting out of the boat a lot wade fishing runs before I put the boat down them then fishing the deeper water out of the boat. Fish have been in most of the runs, but I would say they are in water that provides cover and food. Deep runs, which there at not a ton of at 550cfs, and up in the fast water in the buckets is where I have been seeing most of the fish caught. 
Great swing water at 550cfs on the Lower Yuba
Hatches have been decent but inconsistent. On warmer days there are a few skwalas out and about and most days I see a few fish eating them with big splashy rises. Most days if an angler wants to commit to fishing skwala dries they will rise a few fish. The most consistent dry fly fishing has been the Baeits and Brown Drake hatches in the slicks. In various areas fish will consistently come up and feed on duns, cripples, and emergers but they are about as picky and spooky as it comes. 6-7x is mandatory on a long 12’ plus leader on an down stream presentation. I put a pod of fish down the other day by slowly hand lining my anchor down about 60-80’ away from them …tough fish. 
Best nymphs have been small, size #16 and smaller mayfly nymphs have been best. That said I have caught a few fish on bigger attractor nymphs and rubber legs but not many. The best skwala dries have been one with a nice low profile and I think finding a willing fish is more important then the pattern. I have had some decent luck with fish eating mayflies by dropping a no bead no flash #16-18 PT off the back of a hackle stacker. 
The coming storm should add some flows as Deer Creek will most likely blow out and this will add some color to the river. I imagine the river will fish really good with some color and additional flows but I imagine the river will drop and clear pretty quick without consistent rain. 
Lower Sacramento River Trout – A buddy of mine guided the Lower Sac for 3 days last weekend from Posse Grounds down to Balls Ferry fishing was poor to fair. Clarity got better the farther down river as the Lake is still blown out. That said he did get around 10-15 fish one day which isn’t bad but it is not great for this time of year on the Lower Sac. I imagine this big storm coming in is going to put the river back to square one though as it will blow out the lake more, all the tribs, and muddy everything up again for a while…not looking good for trout fishing in March which is one of the best months of the year on the Lower Sac. 

Lower Sacramento River Striper – For winter striper fishing it has been fair. The fish are around and we have been averaging a few opportunities a day with a few largemouth and smallmouth mixed in. Most fish are good fish but it is obvious that the 55degree water still has the fish a bit lethargic as grabs are not very aggressive and many fish come unbuttoned pretty easy. The hatchery released the yearly salmon smolt Tuesday so with any high water over the next few days should push those fish down river and get the resident stripers keyed up over the next few weeks. Clarity has not been much of an issue down out of chico as by the time the river gets down here it clears enough to feel confident the fish are seeing your flies. Striper and bass fishing is going to be one of the more consistent fishing I think over the next few months. 
Chuck searching for stripers
Rock and Roll Report – One of the best bands I have found in the last year is American Aquirium…The CD Burn, Flicker, Die has been in steady rotation for awhile now. This CD is great…they went into record it with Jason Isbell as their swan song. Record the songs and be DONE! And the Cd has that finality and intensity. They kept going though and their new CD Wolves that just came out this week is an amazing “at piece” type of album, at piece with their lifestyle choice, carreer, and their place in music. Both albums are ones that I put on and listen to from start to finish, no bad songs. 
I also started both my boys in music lessons…building the family band. Beckett has been pounding it out on the drums and Ollie has been learning “Smoke on the Water” and the “Spy Hunter” theme…good stuff. Been watching some sweet Deep Purple and Jimi Hendrix videos on You Tube which is pretty fun. 
Just a few gigs away from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Fitness report replacing the booze news – Still working on eating healthy and running, I have made a deal with myself that if I get to my goal weight I get some new ink…that said I refuse to start looking at, or thinking about drawing up what I want until I am consistently at my goal weight…that said I did have to buy  5 new pairs of pants as many of my old ones don’t fit so that was rewarding. 
Home Brew Switchel

I also am completely into brewing and drinking Switchel or “Haymakers Punch”…my buddy Chuck shared his home brew with me on a fishing trip and I am completely addicted to this stuff. Part of it is the historical significane of it being the original gatorade but I won't lie it is really refreshing and tastes good. Also I won't like it is kinda cool brewing something and putting it in mason jars.
Sports Report - Sucks to be Pete Carol or a sea hawks fan...that said who cares pitchers and catchers report in roughly two weeks and national signing day was yesterday so baseball and college football talk is all I care about. Notre Dames class did not get the normal top 10 ranking, but 13 is nothing to bat an eye at. I think a lot of it is they went Offensive and Defensive line heavy. They did land a few nice WR and a TE that I think might make somes contributions in the next year or two. Big question with ND is who is going to play QB. 

Giants...lets just get the gloves, spikes, and bats and start playing. Need to see who shows up and what they got to really have any opinion at this point. Cain, Lincecum, Mad Bum, Pagan, Belt, what are we gonna get out of these guys. I did get a nice all weather wifi speaker so all game time guide trips will come with a free radio broadcast of the days game via the MLB package on my cell phone...Free with Purchase of guide trip, no extra fee! if you are a fan of another team you still will listen to my team, sorry.