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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Voluntary Hoot Owl Closure ~ Truckee River

The warmest July on record for the Tahoe basin has been all that, and we still have a ways to go before the weather cools. Surface temperatures for Lake Tahoe during last year was 68.4 degrees, a rise in 6 degrees from the previous year. Not sure what the lake's current temps are, but I bet it's near those numbers of last year, or greater. On July 14th I recorded the Truckee River water temp at 64 degrees at 10am in the Glenshire section, yesterday a colleague of mine recorded 66 degrees at 10:30am in the same area. It's time for a voluntary "Hoot Owl" closure on the Truckee River for the livelihood of wild trout within the system. You can do your part by doing the following:

  • Carry a thermometer and take readings on the hour
  • Fish at first light until 11am
  • Use bigger tippet sizes to fight fish more quickly for a safer release
  • Stop fishing when water temperatures reach 67 degrees or higher
  • Educate other anglers on water temperature etiquette

With hot water temps, there are other alternatives when it comes to fishing for trout. Fish the high alpine lakes, tailwaters that provide cold water, rivers that are spring fed, or have numerous cold inflows of feeder creeks. Your actions dictate the future of wild trout in the Truckee River.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

North Fork Yuba River Report 7/25/2018

Fishing remains good on the North Fork Yuba even during this everlasting heat wave thanks to deep subterranean springs that feed the upper watershed. The flows have dropped a little, so focus on the deeper slots, runs, and plunge pools were the native rainbows are concentrated. Fishing pressure remains light, there seems to be more swimmers than anglers lately. Water temps near the Sierra City area are 57 in the morning rising to 64 degrees in the late afternoon, and you guessed it - 8am to 1pm is best. Afternoons slow down until the last few hours of light, and the action increases into darkness. All of my trips have been a blast, and it is so satisfying to see my guests truly appreciate this grand watershed. It always brings out the best of fly fishing experiences.

Still running dry/dropper rigs, but I switch to a terrestrial dry near noon as the dropper fly - only submerged. Beetles, ants, and hoppers being the best choice. Since it has been such a big caddis year I'm favoring the standard Elk Hair caddis over the yellow Stimulator. Purple haze, and Adams parachutes have also fished really well. Effective dropper nymphs include copper and red copper Johns, Hogan's S&M nymph in black with a black bead (could be taken for an ant), and the Psycho Prince.

Use stealth in the big clear slow moving pools, but in the pockets with rougher blury water you can stand on top of them, they don't seem to spook as easy. No rattlesnakes so far, just the occasional single flip-flop resting on a gravel bar. I've got some open dates in August for a serine wilderness fly fishing adventure, and I've got all the put ins and take outs wired for the 8 beats I'm working. If wet wading, dry flies and eager wild trout intrigue you, give me a call at 530.228.0487, or email me at baiocchistroutfitters@yahoo.com to secure your date. If you haven't been to the North Fork Yuba River, now is the time to escape the heat, and explore new and fascinating water.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Creekin Report, Native Sons Tour, Diablo Valley Fly Fishers Workshops, 7/20/2018

The creeks in Eastern Plumas county are in great condition right now, average summer flows and colder water abound. Frazier, Jamison, Gray Eagle, Grizzly, and Little Jamison creeks are producing good fishing. My guests have been catching bigger than average trout this season, something I have not seen in the last 22 years. It's safe to say that the creeks have rejuvenated since the last drought.

Dry flies and dry/dropper rigs have been the most effective. It's a huge year for caddis, and don't forget about ants and hoppers. Water temps are 58 in the morning and climbing to 64 in the afternoon. Fishing pressure is non existent, the further you hike in the better it is. Get out there and get involved, prime conditions will not last long.

I've got some open dates for the creeks in the next month if your interested in a small water matrix. Yesterday I guided the Graeagle Creek Tour which was a big hit! Access areas, rigging, handouts, lunch, and terminal tackle provided. I will be providing another tour next year, July 2019.

The Native Sons Truckee Tour was a real treat for our guests this year. Frank Piscioatta is a encyclopedia of the Truckee area and his knowledge is incredibility vast. Simply put, Frank is the man! We cover all access areas of the Big Truckee from town down to Hirschdale, and the little Truckee. Handouts, mapping and guided fishing completes the tour.

The evening before the actual tour is special treat with a hosted get together at Frank's house complete with a light dinner and a thorough PowerPoint presentation on the Truckee area and the Northern Sierra watersheds. We have 4 spots open for the August 17th & 18th Tour. September's tour is booked. If you want in, just email me at baiocchistroutfitters@yahoo.com

The guided portion of the Native Sons Tour went well. Frank and I never guarantee fish, but we always guarantee you will learn something about fly fishing. Fly anglers crave to seek knowledge these days, and we provide the very best of such.

Diablo Valley Fly Fishers dry fly workshop was a huge success, all participants learned so much and had a great time. We will be having another workshop this coming Sunday and two spots are open. Email me if you're interested in joining

Good fishing is happening now, get it while the getting is good. Water temps on the Big Truckee are rising and very soon voluntary hoot owl closures will occur. Escape the crowds and book a trip with me on the North Fork Yuba River or the creeks of Eastern Plumas county for a remote fly fishing experience. 530.228.0487 - Join me where the wild things are...

The Scarlet Monkey Flower/Mimulus cardinalis amoung the cobblestones of Jamisom creek

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

North Fork Yuba River Fly Fishing Report 7/11/2018

Summertime mode is in full swing on the North Fork Yuba River, and the fishing is very good. The flows have dropped dramatically in the last two weeks making for perfect conditions. Water temperatures are starting out at 57 in the morning and topping out by 62 in the upper watershed. Fishing pressure is moderate in the easy access areas and next to nothing in the more remote areas I like to take my guests.

Dry flies and dry/dropper rigs is a staple here during the summer months. I like to increase my dropper length to 30 inches in the deeper runs and pools, which has been much more productive. I got a chance to fish my guest's Sage SPL 0 weight yesterday and what a fun time. I will be picking up one of these very soon for the NFYR, and general creekin. Keep in mind a shorter leader will perform much better on shorter rods, a standard 7.5 leader to 5x is a good platform to start with.

Active aquatics include caddis, crane flies, little yellow sally's (aloperla), and the occasional random mayfly. The hoppers are out, and an abundance of both black and red ants too.

Western Azalea ~ Rhododendron occidentale

Flora and fauna observations include western azaleas, crimson columbine, seep spring monkey flowers, black bears, kingfishers, and the always present water ouzel. Unbound beauty, luscious pocket water, and fun fly fishing is what the North Fork Yuba River is all about. I've got some open dates for the next two months of prime time, give me a call at 530.228.0487, or email me at baiocchistroutfitters@yahoo.com to book your wilderness fly fishing adventure. See you where the wild things are.

The gatekeepers of Northern Tahoe National Forest 
The Sierra Buttes

Friday, July 6, 2018

Wet Wading Equipment & Tips

When I started fly fishing in 1972, all of my family wet waded. As a young family raising 4 children my Dad did not have the funds to outfit us all with high end waders. We ran cut off Levi's, and the Converse high tops "sportsman" model, which were olive drab in color and featured felt on the bottom sole. My Dad even fished for steelhead in the cooler months with this outfit, but quickly learned that being cold and wet sucks.

It's that time of the year where my waders are hung up, and I look forward to rock hopping and guiding my guests on the North Fork Yuba River. When it's Africa hot, there is nothing like wet wading in the cool water. The products below have been tested on hundreds of trips, but personal preference is still a major part of choosing which name brand you desire.

I prefer to wear light weight quick dry pants instead of shorts. You get maximum protection from the sun and your legs do not get scratched up as much from branches, or abrasion from boulders. The Simms Guide Pant has really held up well and I'm going on my 3rd season. A COR3 activated fabric blend of nylon/spandex wicks moisture, shields sun, and neutralizes odor, while articulated knees and a gusseted crotch make getting into prime casting positions effortless. Storage solutions include one zip and hook-and-loop secure cargo pockets, zip-secure back pocket, slash hand pockets tailored for accessories, and an internal cell phone stash. Traditional Fit and a plush, adjustable brushed tricot-lined waist come standard. This pant is worth every penny for wet wading in 
technical canyon water.

Another option I have been testing is WaderSkins, I have mainly been wearing the leggings which are perfect for canyon water. They keep you warm, and protect your legs better than just wearing pants. Kneeling on boulders is much more comfortable and scratched up legs are a thing of the past.

Many fly anglers like to wear a sneaker or a sandal that has a felt sole for wet wading. I prefer a hardy boot that offers ankle support, and maximum grip both in and out of the water. The North Fork Yuba River is a demanding river to navigate, just getting down in remote sections is a challenge. The Redington Prowler boot offers a wider platform for better balance. I run the rubber soles with studs, and be wary of smooth studs on polished Sierra granite - Slippery stuff. These boots have held up incredibly well, but make sure you carry some extra laces as they get ground down while wading. Your boots are the most important piece of equipment while wet wading.

The Simms Guide Gard socks are built for the long haul, durable textured nylon helps these socks stand up to aggressive tromping season after season. Constructed of cushy 3.5 mm neoprene, these socks are left/right foot-specific for dawn-to-dusk comfort. You do want to make sure to properly dry the socks out both inside and out or they will stink of mildew in a short time.

WETSOX create a friction less barrier between you and your equipment so you can be in and out of your suit and boots in seconds. Easy on suits and boots. These socks make taking off your neoprene booties with ease, they also make putting on waders effortless, they slide right in with no bulk. 

Your normal fishing shirt, a good hat, and polarized glasses round out the complete package. One other piece of equipment should be mentioned - A wading staff. Good for the hike in, wading about the river, and great for the hike back up to the vehicle. A wading staff is also useful to bang against rocks to alert any rattlesnakes and the like.

Enjoy your time wet wading and good luck out there!

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