Northstate Fishing

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Confluence Outfitters Fishing Report

Up-to-date fishing reports on rivers in northern California and southern Oregon from the guides at Confluence Outfitters

I took Bill and John striper fishing today below Red Bluff.  Our quarry was nowhere to be found, but we did have some interesting shad fishing.  I was surprised to see shad still in the river in late July.  There are thousands of them still in the Red Bluff area.  We landed a couple, including Bill's first ever shad.  I also landed a pristine 20" wild rainbow trout on a shad fly on 12# maxima.  On the retrieve!
Posted: July 23, 2015, 12:00 am
The Lower Sac fished well today.  Regulars Bill and John wanted proof that they were actually fishing today, so we took photos of their first fish of the day.  No really big fish today, but we did well on the rubberlegs stone.  Bill hooked about a dozen trout while fishing without an indicator - nice job!  No other boats out today on our float.
Posted: July 22, 2015, 12:00 am

We hooked and landed a lot of quality fish today on Fall River.  My clients Gene and Roger hadn't been on the river since 1998, which was about when I started guiding up here.  There was a good callibaetis hatch in the morning and Roger landed several very nice fish on nymphs.  Gene had a hot streak fishing streamers after lunch and landed 21" and 19" rainbows.  Roger finished up with back-to-back hookups on nymphs.

The evening fishing was very good also.  The hex hatch is still going strong and we had at least two dozen grabs on our big dry flies.  
 

Posted: July 19, 2015, 12:00 am

I had a great day on the Lower Sac today with mother/daughter duo Margo and Lily from Marin.  Lily had never caught and landed a fish all on her own until today.  Lily figured out the drift boat casting and mending technique right away.  Her first two fish were a little on the big side and got away right at the net.  Throughout the day she managed to land 4 wild rainbows and one giant Sacramento sucker.  Margo did very well also. 

The fish were hitting smaller flies (size 14 and smaller) for the most part today.  I saw a few caddisflies but not much bug activity overall. 

Posted: July 17, 2015, 12:00 am
I had the opportunity to spend a few days fishing in the Boise Idaho, Eastern Oregon area and the fishing was great.  
 
Spent the first day on the Owyhee River in Eastern Oregon, and the fishing was incredible.  Big Browns mixed in with a few rainbows all day long.  I caught fish on drys, nymphs, swinging streamers, and the big thrill of the day was stripping salmon fly dries on the surface and getting crushed.  Huge grabs!  The scenery was incredible. An unbelievably beautiful river in the middle of a high mountain desert.  What a unique place to spend a day fishing. Definitely a busy river this time of year. 
 
Day two sent me into a whole different type of fishery.  I drove up the Payette River canyon.  The area was referred to me as the "Tahoe" of Boise.  This was a beautiful river separated into a lower section that was more of a meandering meadow stream, winding its way through pastures and ranches, and an upper section that was a beautiful alpine river.  I drove to the upper stretches, and although the river was flowing at whitewater rafting flows, it was a great evening chasing rainbows with a dry fly in the slow edges.
 
Day three was still another unique fishing experience.  I decided to wear the hat of Urban Angler.  Woke up, got my Starbucks, and walked into the Boise River minutes from the state capitol and right behind Boise State University.  Had a great couple hours pulling up rainbows on various nymphs, and as the weather got warmer, I had a nice PMD hatch to enjoy.  
 
Overall, a great trip to a great part of the country for anglers with a fly rod.  I definitely will be back. 
Posted: July 13, 2015, 12:00 am
The weather in the Fall River Valley has been great this past week. We've got some much needed rain with afternoon thunderstorms and some great fishing during the day between 11 & 2. Not much dry fly action, but great streamer grab. The hex hatch has been high maintence and tough with wind and clouds the last 6 nights, making visibility tough...but we are still hooking nice fish. Not many hexes in the upper river this year, stay below the confluence and you'll find em.
Posted: July 13, 2015, 12:00 am

I just got back from a last-minute trip to Bay Flats Lodge in Seadrift, Texas.  I got them all set up with LodgeRunner.com, my software package for fishing and hunting lodges.  The lodge owner, Captain Chris Martin, treated me to a day of fishing and I had a blast.  Bay Flats Lodge is located about half-way down the Texas coast, about a 3 hour drive south from Houston.  They have over a dozen guides that specialize in redfish and sea trout.  The fishery down there is incredible.  There are endless shallow flats that are teeming with redfish, sea trout, and many other species.  I spent a day wading and started off on an ankle-deep sand flat and would have sworn I was casting to tailing bonefish.  They were actually tailing redfish, and I started hooking them as soon as I put on a shrimp pattern.  The tailing fish were mostly small ones 16" or so, but there were a few mixed in that were much larger.  I landed one about 21" and broke off a really big one.  Later in the day I saw a lot of fish crashing bait on the surface, so I switched over to a small saltwater popper.  I had a ton of action with that thing.  The skipjack, which look and act like baby tarpon, would hit it before I even had time to strip it.  I landed a few of those, broke off another big redfish, and landed a sea trout on the popper.  I almost always had targets to cast to and made blind casts the rest of the time.  The wading was pretty easy.  There are a lot of sand flats and a lot more weedy flats.  You could wade for days on end out there.  The guides say that the fishery is productive throughout the entire calendar year.

I wholeheartedly recommend this fishery and Bay Flats Lodge.  The accommodations are very nice and the lodge has great food, a great management team, and excellent guides.  I can't wait to go back.

Posted: July 9, 2015, 12:00 am
Steelhead season the rivers of the Pacific Northwest is just right around the corner.  I spend my time chasing steelhead with a spey rod on the best rivers in the Pacific Northwest, during prime time on those watersheds.  I had an incredible overall season last year, and expect a very busy season this year.  I just opened up my online booking calendar for my season, and bookings are very limited for these venues.  Please contact me with any questions and more details regarding my venues, and if you wish for me to hold some dates.  Here is my upcoming calendar:
 
 July/August: Spey Camp on the Lower Klamath.  Just a few spots left.  Join fellow Confluence guides Gino Bernero and Leslie Ajari for the one of the best on water spey casting and swing angling instructional opportunities in the business.  Super fun camping experience too!  Just bring a sleeping bag, we have everything else.  
 
September: British Columbia Hosted Trip .  This trip is full, as always.  Inquire for next year.  I will be several different lodge based and camping trips on both the Lower Skeena and Upper Skeena System. 
 
October: The Grand Ronde.  This will be my 5th season working for Scott Odonnell's Speywater Lodge on one of the coolest and most celebrated steelhead rivers in the States.  There are some spots left on my multi day float trips, one of the best steelhead experiences in the business through a remote wilderness canyon.  Lodge spaces are also available.
 
November: The Trinity River.  The closest and one of the most productive steelhead rivers to the Bay Area.  A superb place to learn how to spey cast and swing for steelhead.
 
December-January: The Southern Oregon Coast.  Chasing winter fish on the diverse rivers on the Oregon Coast is one of my favorite venues.  Just a days drive from the Bay Area, these rivers are more stable than Nor Cal rivers.  Very limited openings this season.
 
February-April: The Olympic Peninsula.  I've extended my season up here in the land of the winter giants that run through these amazing rivers.  These famed rivers that come out of the rainforest hold the biggest winter steelhead in the world.  Epic swing water abounds.  This venue is for serious swing anglers looking for a specific fish, a specific moment in their steelhead journey.  Not for anglers who still want to fish from a boat and have their guide row them into a fish.  You need to stand on your own two feet to get them here. 
Posted: July 8, 2015, 12:00 am
Andrew, Bob and I had the Fall River to ourselves today and it was the best grab in two weeks. Sadly, not much dry fly action but the sinking line and nymph grab was on fire from 10 to 1:30. Overcast helped. Hex hatch has been excellent. Keen anglers Steve and Jon absolutely crushed the other night. Landing ratio isn't always great for the hex, but lots of eats if you can cast accurately, aren't in a tangled mess, and don't thrash the water aimlessly before the hatch...
Posted: July 4, 2015, 12:00 am
Took Rob from Sacramento down the Lower Sac and we had a great day! The weather was warm, but the water and the breeze made for a great day. We saw only one other boat all day and Rob hooked up on 6 quality fish in the 14-16 inch range. Fish were along the edges and really liked our prince nymphs.
Posted: July 3, 2015, 12:00 am

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