Water Conditions: Good
Flows are at 108 cfs as of 2/4
Water temperatures are dropping fast.
Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Good
OKAY IT'S TIME TO CLIMB UP ON THE SOAPBOX: DFG is no longer stocking fall spawning rainbows. Every fish laid in the dead grass, carried away from the water, held with a towel or squeezed is another fish that won't be spawning.
Not much to report on, with the storm of last week it's now snowshoe, ski or snowmobile to get into the river. Maybe because of the limited access the few reports that I'm getting are that the fishing is good. I think this might be a wake up call about what heavy pressure and lack of stealth does to the fishing. It seems like the big fish are up to their old tricks, keying in on specific sizes and styles of flies that doesn't seem to make any sense. One day it's size 20-24 midges the next day big pheasant tails and attractor patterns. Now that we are into January the fall/winter run rainbows are starting to head back to Crowley and the spring spawners are heading upstream. You'll also find that fish have moved out of the bends into the pockets in the long straight sections.
The fishing pressure had been heavy before the storm so the fish were getting well educated, you'd better get the drift and the pattern right. The lake fish are figuring out what there is to eat so don't be afraid to go really small and a little flash is a good idea. The fishing has been very inconsistent, one day good and the next day leaves you wondering where they all went.
Hatches are still weak, midges being the dominate bug. Outside of the midges (#22-26) there is a scattering of small mayflies (#20-22) midday, but they are very inconsistent. I have not heard of any bigger mayflies coming off like at Hot Creek. If you're into dry fly fishing look for any backwater, some of them will hold big fish feeding on the surface, but most of the rising fish are on the smaller side. Don't forget that the BWO spinnerfall is also midday so if you are not getting takes try a spinner pattern. If you want a real challenge forget the lake fish and key on the 6"-15" fish, prepare to be humbled.
DRIES: Stimulator #12-16 | Griffiths Gnat #20-24 | EC Caddis #16-18 | Parachute Extended Body BWO #20-22 |Elk Hair Caddis #20
NYMPHS: Zebra Midge #16-22 | Prince Nymph #12-16 | Copper John #14-16 |Tungsten Jig Baetis #18-20 | Harrop's Surface Emerger #20-22 | Roza Pink Tag Jig #16d | Clearwater Emerger #18-20 | S&M Nymph #20-22 | Medalion Midge #20-24 |Bling Midge #22-24
STREAMERS: Shock Collar Leech #10 | Woolly Bugger White, Olive & Brown #6-14 | Punk Perch light or dark #10-16