Up-to-date fishing reports on rivers in northern California and southern Oregon from the guides at Confluence Outfitters
I've spent the last 10 days touring around the amazing Skeena System in British Columbia, where I have been hosting trips for the past 5 years. I am expanding my hosting operation this year, and will be offering multiple location and trip options in the future to better suit time and financial concerns for the avid steelheader.
The fishing has been fantastic since I've been here, with rainy steelhead days and cool temperatures. This is a drastic change from the hot dry weather this summer I experienced in California, Washington, and Oregon. The steelhead seem to like it too. I've seen some amazing fish landed this week from 8 to 21 lbs, and saw some larger ones hooked and lost. This place is truly amazing.
Posted: August 29, 2015, 12:00 am
I had a fun day on the Pit River today with father/daughter duo Rich and Nina. FYI, the Pit River Road is still closed 24 hours/day a little ways above Rock Creek. We came in from the Big Bend side and started in Pit 5 and worked our way up to Pit 3. We did okay nymphing the deeper buckets, but the best action was with a hopper/dropper rig in the smaller, shallower pockets. Nina rose fish up to 16" on her hopper pattern. She had a lot of hopper grabs on pink and olive hoppers in the mid-afternoon. The best fish to hand was a fat 16" rainbow on the dropper nymph. Nice going guys! Rich and Nina both survived the Pit without falling in and they both caught fish!
Posted: August 28, 2015, 12:00 am
I fished the Lower Sac the last two days with clients Chuck & Bill from the Walnut Creek area. Overall, the fishing was okay. The nymph grab was pretty tough at times, but good enough for decent action. We had fun yesterday fishing dries and dry/dropper in the afternoon. Those of you who enjoy the afternoon DFO (dry fly only) half-day trips will be interested to hear that the caddisflies are starting to hatch and there are some very big fish eating them on the surface. Chuck hooked one that was well over 20" yesterday. Bill did well on the hopper-dropper rig, hooking two nice fish on his dropper on consecutive casts.
Posted: August 27, 2015, 12:00 am
I fished with Cheryl from the Diablo Valley Fly Fishers today on Battle Creek. Fishing started out pretty slow, but the bite turned on around 1pm and improved throughout the afternoon. Cheryl had a 7'6" 3wt, a perfect rod for our private section of Battle Creek. She landed a lot of nice 10" rainbows and countless smaller fish on a variety of dry flies. The best fly by far was a size 14 parachute Adams. The biggest fish hooked was a 12" rainbow that ate a size 6 orange Chernobyl ant. This was my best outing on Battle Creek so far this season.
Posted: August 22, 2015, 12:00 am
I spent a half-day scouting for stripers on the Sac this morning and the bite was really good! I landed 5 schoolies and lost 3 bigger fish, the largest about 15 pounds. I also landed a 10 pound plus squawfish - one of the biggest I've ever seen. I had one really big striper (I'm guessing 20+ pounds) follow my fly, too. The striper grab should be pretty solid for the next two months. Come up and check it out!
Posted: August 18, 2015, 12:00 am
We just finished up our Spey Camps on the beautiful Lower Klamath River. Our Spey Camps are instruction based, but we also like to catch chrome half pound and adult steelhead while we are teaching beginner to expert spey casting and angling techniques. The first few camps had some exceptionally hot weather. Then things really cooled off dramatically, and the river temperature in our home water dropped from 72 degrees to 69 degrees. Steelhead poured in and we had some excellent fishing in our home water and the other amazing swing runs close to our camp. Leslie prepared superb meals, Gino cruised us to some of the best swing water in the lower 48, and everyone left a better spey caster and steelhead angler. Spey Camp is such a good time.
I would like to address some concerns that I have heard regarding high water temperatures on the Klamath, and if we should be fishing in such conditions. This drought has really heightened awareness for our rivers, which is a great thing. I appreciate and share everyones concerns about this situation. We are acutely aware of the water temperatures where we are fishing, and continuously monitor the situation. We don't look on the internet for temps, we put a thermometer in the water that we are fishing in. When the temps got to what we felt like was too warm, and it looked like the heat was going to continue, we canceled a few trips. When it cooled off, it was game on.
In relation to the inland trout streams that most fly anglers are use to fishing, the Lower Klamath is a much different fishery. Water temperatures between 68 and 72 degrees are quite normal on the Lower Klamath in July and August. As a trout angler, I realize that we are used to fishing much cooler water temps. The Lower Klamath is simply a totally different animal compared to trout streams, and other steelhead rivers for that matter. There are multiple temperature gages on the Klamath, and the temperature above Blue Creek will be several degrees higher that the water that we fish during Spey Camp, since we only fish below the closure. The fish that we encountered and carefully released shot off like bullets, like all chrome steelhead do. We didn't pose for any hero shots with fish, and a fish never came out of the water. Spey Camp is one of the coolest experiences out there for two handed enthusiasts, and look for Confluence Outfitter Spey Camps going into the Fall months next year.
Posted: August 17, 2015, 12:00 am
Here are a few photos from Spey Camp!
Posted: August 17, 2015, 12:00 am
Jon Hazlett from the Ashland Fly Shop hosted a group in Spey Camp #4 this year. Follow this link
to the AFS blog for a report and some photos from the trip!
Posted: August 15, 2015, 12:00 am
I took my sled out on the Sac today to try out my new electric trolling motor. I just finished installing it and it works great! It will be a big help on striper trips. In two and a half hours of fishing I landed two shad and one small striper. Pretty fun! I can't believe the shad are still around in mid-August.
Posted: August 13, 2015, 12:00 am
Fishing was a bit slow today on the Lower Sac. I floated clients Bill and Brig from the Posse Grounds to Bonnyview. They both landed nice fish, but the grab was just off. Temps in the 80s were nice, though. It's pretty smoky up here but not bad enough to bother you while you're fishing.
Posted: August 10, 2015, 12:00 am