Flows are still a tad high for this time of year, but overall the fishing is great if you love small wild rainbows that shimmer like jewels in the Northern Sierra sun, and top water dry fly action. Water temperatures remain prime running 56 degrees in the morning and 63 in the afternoon for the upper watershed. It's so awesome to see my guests truly appreciate a wild setting, the roar of the white water as it echoes off the canyon walls, and the Sierra Buttes standing guard to the west. Fishing pressure was light today, and now that the Downieville Classic bike race is over, the canyon is quiet once again.
These rainbows are a hoot to fish for. They get so excited when a properly drifted dry fly comes through their lane, often throwing backflips over your fly and completely missing it. I have said this a thousand times but if you're new to fly fishing the North Fork Yuba River is the perfect classroom, it will teach you much about fly fishing for wild trout.
During August it's all about finding where the cold springs come in. Trout will congregate where these 42 to 44 degree flows come in. Downstream from this spring we had the best action of the day, even though the water structure was not the best. Trout are just like any living creature including us, they'll go where the A/C is and other favorable conditions exist to be comfortable and happy.
Same flies are working from my last blog post, you can read it HERE. Believe it or not ants are getting more attention than hoppers, strange but true. There are smaller dark craneflies out as of late, and still plenty of little yellow Sallies.
An interesting observation worth sharing again, my guests today asked me why these October Caddis casings were on top of the rock for this time of year. It's not from emergence, but from Water Ouzels (also known as the gray bird, the dipper) picking them from below the surface off the bottom substrate, and pulling out the pupa and eating them, leaving only the pebbled case behind as evidence.
Conditions are prime on the North Fork Yuba River now, so get after it!
I had my first trip into the gorge known as the "Grand Canyon" of Jamison creek last week, and how the river has changed from the high flows is amazing. There are so many large trees that are strewn all about it's liar. Big boulders once there, now gone. Plunge pools from last year that are now filled in with cobble, and new deep ones that never existed before.
Fishing was great, and even better we had first tracks, not another human footprint detected, only deer, bear, and racoon. Same flies as the North Fork Yuba River applied here. Talk about a remote setting, it was just my guest and I. Steve is a creek junkie, and a long time fly angler that was impressed with the grand canyon, and this guy is from Texas. The dude was in heaven.
I've been out on a lot of rivers and creeks since the high water events of last winter, and most of these venues do not have the aquatic insect populations of years past due to the scouring effects of the high flows. Jamison creek surprised me by the insane number of Siphlonurus nymphs - The Gray Drake. They were everywhere in the idle side waters, darting about like minnows. There were also large percentages of cased caddis with an organic material, not sure of the species, but they were everywhere too. Lastly, there were golden stone nymphs under many exposed rocks we checked. Pretty cool to see so many bugs after a hellacious runoff.
Last Saturday I had the privilege to film a new upcoming fly fishing promo video with EEKOE socks, a generous sponsor of mine who produces the best sock on the planet. You really need to wear a pair of these, once you do you'll never go back. The video shoot was so cool as Greg Stevens of Photoflight Productions was on hand to shoot the footage. I've never been around drones but they are so bad ass! Look for the promo video soon as I will debut here on my blog. Remember to click on the highlighted words for links, and click on the pictures for a larger view.
About a month left of Summer, experience it all before it's gone. Explore your Northern California and the great outdoors - It's free.
See you on the water...