A Sierra Drifters Fish Report for 4/21/17

Guided fly fishing trips for Crowley Lake, Grant & Silver Lakes, the San Joaquin, Upper and Middle Owens Rivers, East Walker River, McGee Creek, Pleasant Valley Reservoir, Hot Creek, & the Gorge located near Mammoth and Bishop Ca. will give you opportunities to catch trophy rainbows and browns while being guided by expert fly fishing pros. Sierra Drifters guides utilize top of the line center console bay boats, drift boats, float tubes, and high quality fly fishing tackle to guide you on these blue ribbon trout waters.

Quick Look Fish Report 4/21/17

It’s beginning to look a lot like Fishmas around here! Boats and docks have been going in all week at various lakes in the area. Lakes below 9000′ are all ice free now and everything above is still ice bound. Road crews have been hard at work trying to get passes open as quickly as possible. They have their work cut out for them for sure this year. Almost 98 inches of water is the total for the area this year. That number is most incredible and will be a new record if we break the 100 inch mark. Temps have stayed in the 50’s around most of Mono County and opening weekend looks to be quite pleasant and mild this time around. East Walker producing some fish in the right spots now. Nymphing has been the best technique in the slower water. Bridgeport Reservoir is primed for the opener and the RV Park is up and ready. Hot Creek all clear now for drive in access. Water in good condition with some nice quality fish in select spots. Upper Owens still in transition and the cutthroat haven’t made their way in yet. My guess is as soon as the weather warms and we get a little more run off they will migrate. Crowley Lake ice free and well stocked. Plan on lots of crowds opening weekend here. Middle Owens running high with decent water clarity but tough to fish. 

Backside of Convict Lake displaying some decent snow!

Convict Lake view facing the outlet!

Time to get those rental boats in!

Twin Lakes in Mammoth! Ice fishing anyone?

Here are a list of campgrounds in the area with their projected openings:

Rock Creek/Crowley/McGee/Convict:

• Holiday is OPEN
• Tuft and French PROJECTED opening on April 28th, depending on potable water test results
• McGee Creek PROJECTED opening is May 5th
• McGee Creek RV Park & Campground opening April 24th
• Crowley Lake Fish Camp OPEN
• Convict Lake – PROJECTED April 28th depending on potable water test results

June Lake Loop:
• June Lake, Oh Ridge (one loop only), Gull Lake, Aeire Crag (for RV’s ONLY), Silver Lake campgrounds are PROJECTED April 26th.
• Reversed Creek PROJECTED opening May 15th (fallen trees, etc. need to be cleared)
• Silver Lake Resort & RV Park PROJECTED April 28th
• Pine Cliff Resort & RV Park PROJECTED April 27th

Mammoth Lakes:
• Mammoth Mountain RV Park is OPEN
• New Shady Rest – PROJECTED May 5th depending on snowmelt
• Sherwin – TBD
• Mammoth Lakes Basin – TBD

Mono Basin:
• Dispersed, dry camping may be found off Hwy 120 East at lower elevations
Mono Vista RV Park is OPEN
• Lundy Canyon Campground PROJECTED April 28th.

Bridgeport/Walker: Call WESTRek at 760-932-7092 for more info.
• Upper Honeymoon Flat, and part of Lower Twin PROJECTED April 28th. (No potable water at either)
• Chris Flat OPEN (no potable water)
• Robinson Creek, north loop OPEN (no potable water)
• Paradise Shores before April 28th
• Bridgeport Reservoir RV Park and Marina before April 28th
• Twin Lakes Resort before April 28th
• Doc and Al’s before April 28th
• Annette’s Mono Village before April 28th
• Sawtooth Loop of Crags OPEN (no potable water)
• Meadowcliff Lodge & Coleville KOA is OPEN

Crowley Lake 4/21/17


This will be the place to be this opener.  A huge planting of fish has been delivered here and conditions look to be prime for opening weekend. Water levels have been dropping the past month and into April which should allow for shallower than usual fishing from years past. Midges have already been seen congregating above the sage and rabbit brush around the lake. You will want to locate the warmest bottom water to find the best concentrations of feeding fish. 

Upper Owens River 4/21/17


Snow bows are out, cutthroat are close but not in yet. Water clarity good above Hot Creek confluence. Some smaller hatchery trout have made their way upstream from below the bridge. Dept. of F&W did some planting down river last week. Look for flows to come up soon. Drive in access improving daily, but roads leading to river still a mess.

The section upstream from the Benton Bridge is open year around with special regulations. Seasonal closures, and angling restrictions apply downstream from the bridge, check regulations before fishing in this section.

Middle Owens River/PVR/Wild Trout section (Bishop Area) 4/21/17


 River still not fishable yet and will remain high for most of the season this year. Flooding still along the banks and areas that haven’t seen water in years now completely covered. Not very fishable at this time.




 This fishery remains open year around. Special regs from the footbridge at Pleasant Valley campground to the fishing monument 4.7 miles downstream.

Hot Creek 4/21/17


Some quality fish to be had here if you put in the time and cover some water. Caddis beginning to show up more in the afternoons now. Small nymphs, egg patterns, and SJ worms getting some grabs too. Drive in access wide open and dry roads now.

Steve Bossi with a healthy brown trout out of the canyon section. Two Bug Doug was his guide.

A great rainbow from the Interpretive Site for Steve on the same day! 



This is a year around fishery with special regs in place.

*Tom Loe, Doug Rodricks, and Doug Dolan are under permit from the Inyo National Forest Service to guide Hot Creek.

The Gorge 4/21/17

Good water quality here. Not many fish seen in this area. Dropping flows may improve the bite in the future.

Season open year around

 East Walker River 4/21/17

“A shot of the river looking out from the pipe at the dam”


Flows now at 346 cfs. This is very fishable now. Some nice browns have been showing up and a few rainbows. The slower water pockets are holding fish until the water warms up and they start moving into a little faster flows. River should continue to drop until Bridgeport starts getting more fill. 

This fishery is open year around below the Bridgeport Reservoir dam to Nevada State line. Open year around in Nevada also.


Jurassic Pond 4/21/17

We are now taking bookings for the 2017 season to fish the legendary waters of Jurassic Pond. Located on beautiful McGee Creek, & overlooking Crowley Lake, this is exclusively private water which is home to the largest rainbows, and browns located in the Sierra. There is no equal anywhere in this region for the size, & number of gigantic fish you will find here. This is a fly fishing, catch & release sanctuary that requires a Sierra Drifters Guide to assist you in landing that once in a lifetime trout. Please contact us for openings, and information about a trip to Jurassic Pond.

We use a variety of fly fishing techniques to fool the monsters on Jurassic. These are wild trout that thrive in the cold, snow fed waters of this monster trout sanctuary. This behemoth rainbow caught by Robbie Souza went over thirty inches, and twenty pounds. This fish has even larger cousins!

This exceptional German Brown is one of many wild trout that lurk in the crystal clear waters of Jurassic Pond. Vic Davis was able to fool “bad Leroy Brown” on a streamer pattern.

***New for 2017! I have limited quantities of some new patterns that will guarantee advantage in your quest for trophy trout. Balanced patterns are the new rage for nymphing, & streamer fishing. We have been guide testing these patterns for several years, & I can honestly say they are the most significant improvement in fly design in over a decade. They are truly superior to conventional fly designs. The flies ride “parallel”; or “level” to the bottom giving them a far more realistic profile. The jig style hook becomes more effective as it seldom gets snagged on the bottom, & sets efficiently in the fishes mouth. These flies are intended to fish as your bottom fly in a multi fly; or tandem rig. They are deadly fished solo as a streamer. Add these patterns to your quiver for all fisheries that you still water nymph; or cast streamers. Some sizes are not available due to back orders on jig hooks, & are only available online at this time. I will add more sizes on some patterns as we get shipments in. Click on “fly sales” on the nav bar above, hit “menu” first from a mobile device to access the nav bar.

You can pick up our flies & Under-cators at Reagan’s Sports in Bishop, the Crowley General Store (not at the lake), Ricks Sport Center in Mammoth (limited selection), Bridgeport Reservoir RV Park (currently closed for winter), Stroud’s Tackle in San Diego.

I have added a picture gallery to the website . Click on the “gallery” button and do a search for your name, or scroll through the pages. You can double click on the picture to enlarge it once it is located.

Thank you for visiting our website and checking out our report. Be the Fly…. Doug Rodricks, Sierra Drifters Guide Service.



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