The warm days of summer have set in this week and the fishing continues to be excellent in most locations. River flows are near perfect levels in all areas with the exception of the Lower Owens river. Flows have begun to rise here and 100 degree days in Bishop have become the norm. Just up the hill in Mono County, the daytime temps have been pleasant and the rivers and lakes have been kicking out some fabulous fish. Crowley Lake is giving up consistently large model fish of all species. East Walker River is running at perfect levels for wading and fishing has been good. Upper Owens really fun with small hopper patterns currently. Hot Creek becoming a fun and challenging experience for casting dry flies in the open water around the weed beds. The road into the San Joaquin River will open on 6/26. Bridgeport Reservoir gave up some real hogs this month.
Fish are running deep these days, with 20′ depths becoming the new shallow water fishing. It won’t be long before these fish start to make their migration into the shallows as they hunt the channels and the weed beds in search of higher protein sources like the damselfly nymphs and callibaetis mayflies. Midges are still doing the trick in deep water, and the bite can be epic on the right day. It has been some time since June has kicked out fish of this caliber on a daily basis. Some real trophy fish are showing up. Fishing is great all over the lake currently with some real stand out areas producing. Browns, rainbow and cutthroat trout are all in the mix now. These deep water fish are tight to the mud bottom and feeding on larvae and emerging pupa. Set the hook and hold on for some serious reel burning action this summer.
Lower Owens River/Wild Trout Section (Bishop Area)
Flows have begun to rise here as Crowley Lake begins to slowly drop. The summer heat is on during the day, so best times for fishing are early morning and late evening. Look for all day midge hatches and some afternoon and evening caddis. We will be starting to fade out on our drift trips now as the water starts to rise. Fishing up the hill has been on fire, so we are focusing our efforts on more productive waters.
Best Flies: Spruce-a-Bu #8 Light and Dark, Loeberg #10 all colors, Agent Orange #8-10, Crystal Leech #8-10, Punk Park dark and light #8-12, Flashback PT #16-18, Copper Tiger Midge #18-20, San Juan Worm Brown #14, Crystal Caddis Larva #18
Pretty steady action in both the Interpretive Site and in the canyon. Smaller nymphs and dry flies are working well here. Water will start to take on a slightly stained look on the warmer days with the snow melt being brought into the creek. Look for a decent caddis hatch in the evenings and solid midge hatches throughout the day. Access is now open to both areas.
Best Flies: Flashback PT’s #16-#20, Tricos Spinners #20-22, SD Crawlers in Red #14, Copper Tiger Midges #18-20, and #18 Assassin Dark, Tangerine Opaque, Kiwi Flash, and Apricot Flash Otter Eggs have been excellent.
Upper Owens River
It’s good here up and down the river. The cutthroat spawn is pretty much coming to an end with a few fish still left in the river. Most of these fish are beat up and tired from their long spring excursion so it is best to leave them be and let them return to Crowley Lake in peace. The rainbows on the other hand are on the chew with a vengeance. These fish are very aggressive and we have been having some excellent days down here catching them. Most nymphs are working this time of year, as they are not very picky. As long as your drift is somewhat decent, you will get into fish. Look for some good dry fly caddis action in the evenings.
Best Flies: Stimulator – 12, 14, 16; Crystal Copper Tiger Midge – 16,18; B100FB – 14, 16, 18, 20; Spruce a bu dark and light; Loeberg Mallard Silver; Loeberg Guinea Silver, Crystal Midge Pupa Black – 18; Crystal Chironomid Emerger Copper – 16, 18; Broken Back Copper Tiger Midge – 14,16,18, Tangerine Opaque, Tangerine Red Flash, Kiwi Flash and Flamingo Otter Eggs.
East Walker River
Flows have been perfect here this spring. Some big fish have been biting and most areas of the river are fishing well. The bite can be great here any time of day so no need to get here early. The miracle mile section has been giving up some good ones and various other spots are holding some big ones. Crossing at the current flow rate of 120 cfs is fairly easy, so access to the best spots is completely feasible. Nymphing has been getting the job done.
Best Flies: B100FB – 18, 20; Crystal Copper Tiger Midge -16; Crystal Zebra Midge – 16, 18; Punk Perch Light and Dark – 14, 16; Parallel Punk Perch Light and Dark; Crystal Leech – 12, 14, 16; Agent Orange 12, 14, 16; Parallel Agent Orange – 14, Spruce-a-bu Dark and Light, Eggs: Tangerine Red Flash, Dead Egg, Tangerine Opaque, Flamingo.
Fishing continues to shine as we get into the middle of the month. Crowley Lake has seen its busiest weekend......