Lower Owens River Report

The Trout Fitter Staff

Report Date:


Flow Rates and Water Conditions

Water Conditions:Poor At Best

The flows on the Lower are down to 149 cfs for what it's worth since the water is very dirty. There is virtually no access above the cement plant and even downstream most of the dirt roads are blocked off.

Fishing Conditions and Hatches: Poor

ALERT, ALERT: DON'T DO IT, at least until things quiet down. The water is very muddy and almost no access. The Pleasant Valley Dam Road is closed at the highway and Chalk Bluff Road is closed at the cement plant.

I'm leaving the following report up for now with slight hope things will improve some in the near future. 

It will be interesting to see if the Grannom caddis hatch comes off this year. Normally it occurs the second half of March (give or take a week on either side). Arguablly the most exciting hatch of the year but also the most frustrating, both in its inconsistency and its incredibly localized appearance. Water quality has gotten worse and the flows have gone up, now over 300cfs. Basic formula: Crowley and PVR are both stable so if you add Crowley outflow (222+/-) the Gorge(39) Rock Creek/Pine Creek(60+/-) you'll get a pretty good estimate. Still finding fish in the1-2 foot riffles. We've been doing well on scud patterns in cream to light olive and gray #14-18. Midmorning on is all midges with an occasional Cranefly, especially the further downstream you go. The Baetis hatch is picking up but somebody better let the fish know. If you're looking for surface activity key on the backwaters. Sizes of the mayflies are less varied but generally from # 16-18. Every cycle of mayflies trends from big to smaller, early on you're seeing bugs from last fall but towards spring they are products of this year. The longer the nymphs have to grow the bigger they get. BIG NEWS: We've been seeing a lot of small stonefly nymphs but today bigger stonefly adults appeared, in #8-10 size. The stoneflies tend to be an afternoon occurrence. The Baetis hatch is now starting around 12:30 and going until 3 but 1-2 is still the best time for them.These hatches can be very localized so don't stick with one spot if you're not seeing them. Now that the water has gotten colder, you'll start finding leeches on the fish. This is quite normal, when the water gets cold enough the fish start resting on the bottom.

DRIES: Stillborn Midge #20-22  | Giffith's Gnat #22-24 |CDC Transition midge #20-22 | No Mercy Midge #18-24 | Boroff F/Homie #20, 24 | Para CDC Baetis #16-22 | Para Adams #14-22 | Stimulators #8-10

NYMPH:  Pheasant Tail #14-20 | Hares Ear #16-20 |Caddis Cased #12 | Zebra Midge #18-22 |Weiss BP light or dark #18-20 | Bottom Roller Phsyco Rhyco #10-14 | Pearl & Orange #16 |Chamois caddis #16-20 | TB Millers +1 Lt #16-18  | Lexi Girdle Bug Tan/Black #6 | HDA Fav. Variant #12-16

STREAMERS: Wooly Bugger Olive & Black #10-12 | Mini Sculpin Olive & Black #10-12

More Reports

The Trout Fitter Reports
for Friday, March 17th, 2023
Hot Creek: Hot Creek Fishing Report
Owens River - Section 3 - Upper (above Crowley): The midges are the only hatches going on right now
The Trout Fitter Reports
for Friday, February 3rd, 2023
Hot Creek: Hot Creek Fishing Report
Owens River - Section 3 - Upper (above Crowley): Upper Owens River Report
Owens River - Lower: Lower Owens River Report


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