Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Well, I’m back in action since tweaking my back on the 1st of June, It took about 11 days to be able to work again and I’m being careful with every move I make. For 2 weeks we had big wind up at the lake, and colder than normal temperatures blanketed the region. The most brutal day was last Wednesday when we saw 40 mile an hour gusts, and snow squalls. We had to motor in from the mid lake back to Honker Cove boat ramp at 5 miles an hour with three foot swells, yeah we got soaked on that ride, and my guests and I were on edge. Water temps dropped again down to 57 to 60 degrees from the low that blew through. Currently they are at 61 to 65 degrees with the warmer weather of this week. Fishing pressure has increased as well, both anglers in tubes, boats, and others roaming the shore.
Our two Lake Davis Outings were a huge success! Rob Anderson from Reno Fly Fishing Outfitters does an amazing job with quality meals for our guests, a heck of a storyteller, and a great teacher. All of our guests learned so much about fishing the damselfly hatch at Lake Davis, and many other techniques to incorporate when fishing stillwaters in the west.
I had such a good time sharing the knowledge. It’s awesome to see anglers progress in a very short time, and to hook into a real animal where you get to see your backing. We will be offering the outings next June for sure, if you’re interested, book early as they fill up quickly. Special thanks to all those that attended!
The damsel hatch is in full swing, and the resident rainbows are starting to wise up to artificials. For better success, go with a smaller hook that is 3 times heavy, and make sure the pattern is the same size, slender, and the right color of the natural. The key to success is to watch for boiling rises, figure out what direction they are heading, and lead them by 5 feet so they intercept your fly. Being quick to cast with a little luck on your side sure does help.
The Hexagenia mayfly has been out but with the colder temperatures very few hatched, in fact they had a hard time lifting off the water. All that changed last Saturday night when the fricken wind finally laid down combined with warmer air temps. We saw many duns emerging. The fish are not keyed in on them yet, but it’s only a matter of time. Callibaetis spinners are out in the afternoon and I have not seen any fish take them due to the fact they are stuffed with damsel nymphs. Blood midges have not been active during the day until the last hour of light, make sure to have a few emerger patterns if you plan to fish in the evening.
Overall fishing is good, just not big numbers of fish. There have been some real toads hooked by my guests including five 5 pound fish, and one at 6 pounds. One observation that a friend shared with me is that there are not very many California gulls, usually they line the banks pecking away at damsel nymphs like chickens on the ranch. Very strange. The cooler weather may extend the fly fishing at Lake Davis into the first week of July. I’ll be guiding at the lake until the end of the month then switching locations to the North Fork Yuba River. If you’re interested in booking a trip where the wild things are, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or give me a ring at 530.228.0487
See you on the water...
Tuesday, June 7, 2016
First off, I blew my back out last Wednesday while unhitching my boat after a trip on the lake. It is what it is, and it’s not just age. When you’ve competed at BMX, vert skateboarding, professional snowboarding, and lastly my boyhood dream, motocross – it all has caught up to me. Bottom line is I spend too much time behind the computer trying to compete with the Jones’s, and not enough time on the road bike and exercising. While being bedridden, I thought about getting back to my old self and pounding out the miles. I know I shouldn’t really worry about competing with others in regards to guiding. I offer so much experience like fly fishing for 44 years, and guiding for 19 years, with the angle of being a true Northern California native and naturalist, and a published author. Very few can match that. Special thanks to Frank and Karen Pisciotta care taking for me the last 5 days, your love and support is greatly appreciated.
Since I’ve been out of action of late, I’m thankful to my close knit friends, my antennas who have reported some very accurate intelligence. Some slight changes in the last week since our first heat wave of triple digits in the central valley of California. The damsel hatch is definitely on; some days will be stellar, while others just average. Move until you find the fish, and then hammer those toads. Long leaders to 14 feet with precise presentations will award you with a large rainbow at Lake Davis. Water temps are ranging from the low to mid 60’s. Fishing pressure is increasing so choose a spot that is not being picked on. Fish like solitude as well.
Callibaetis (both duns and spinners), blood midges, other chironomids, damsels, and a few snails have been out. No hexes yet, but by the time I report next week I have a feeling they will be out. Same flies and techniques apply as past reports. It’s all about finding those active schools of feeding fish. Good luck out there, and experience the grandeur of the Northern Sierra.
Squaw Carpet Ceanothus Prostratus lurking below a Jeffrey pine in Eastern Plumas County