A Sierra Drifters Fish Report for 9/11/17

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 9/11/17

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The first day of fall seems to be just around the corner. Temperatures are already starting to get down to a pleasant level as the Labor Day weekend brought some very hot temperatures to the area. Higher elevation lakes are starting to show signs of frost at night while most areas along highway 395 have been experiencing perfect weather. The monsoon thundershowers have been hit and miss, but this week should bring some fair amounts of rainfall in certain areas. Fishing has been downright excellent in many areas. Moving water and stillwaters have been producing lots of fish, and the absence of heavy crowds has made it one of the best times of the year to be up here. East Walker River has been good some days and slow on others. Still some fishing pressure here, but lighter than before the holiday weekend. Bridgeport Reservoir was as good as it gets in the creek channels this week. Water level is dropping but at a slow and steady pace. San Joaquin River is at a perfect flow and many eager trout have been hitting the dry fly. Upper Owens has fish podding up in deeper pools and undercuts. Hot Creek ok along the weed lanes, pockets, and edges of the banks. Crowley Lake still kicking out some big fish. The bigs are refusing to leave the North end and McGee Bay and keep on biting! Lower Owens flowing high and still stained.


 Crowley Lake 9/11/17

Still going strong on this “stillwater”. The big fish continue to feed on the helpless perch fry and callibaetis nymphs here. We have had some epic days on big fish with quite a few double hook ups throughout the day. Fishing pressure has been very light recently and a little wind can really stir up a “feeding frenzy” of a bite. Hot flies have been our light and dark “Assassins” fished in the channel and along the flats. Fish longer casts when the water is calm and you can get away with shorter distances with some chop on the water. Slow stripping streamer patterns like our “Punk Perch” and “Parallel Punk Perch and Level Leech” have also been getting some aggressive takes.


Check out some recent catches from our clients here:

Olivier Gregoire scored this beautiful hen rainbow!

Mike Gonzales fished with Tom Loe and produced this fine cutthroat specimen!

Mike with son Kyle and one of several double hook ups for the day!

Bill Hayward did well in the shallows and scored this killer rainbow!

Dan Stitt was on them on an afternoon trip with me!

Dan’s wife Apolline also got into them big time!

Dan posing with a nice cutty!

Jerry Gilpin took Kristi Morita and family out and she scored this sweet cutthroat!

Kristi’s father Nick got one of many of his own large fish!

Greg Tamura scored this fine brown trout while fishing with Jerry!

Another of Greg’s many fish!

Here’s Paul Mora with his brownie while fishing with Jerry!

Glen and Greg Tamura with a nice double!

Dave Carranza got Nelson Murata on some nice ones! 

Chanel Carrizosa with a stunning rainbow from shallow water. Tom Loe was her guide!





San Joaquin River 9/11/17

Flows now at 62 cfs. Lots of wild fish in various locations of the river. Water is crystal clear, so a sneaky and stealthy approach is needed. Drag free drifts have been getting bites on the surface with a dry fly that matches the hatch. Small nymphs have also been working well in the deeper pools.

Brian King working a section of the river with a dry fly!

Brian scored this nice ‘bow for his efforts!

Upper Owens River 9/11/17

River now at an excellent flow rate at 69 cfs. Fish are still rising to hoppers, stimulators, caddis, and mayfly dries. Keep the offerings floating high on the water for some aggressive takes. Fishing along the under cut banks, deep pools, and riffles have been getting grabs.




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 (Bishop Area) 9/11/17


444 cfs on the river currently with 175 cfs coming through from Bishop Creek. River has dropped some this past week. Still off color below Line St., but we may take a look down here soon if flows continue to drop.The reservoir is fishing good while pulling full sink and sink tip lines from a tube. Go with dark streamer colors on the overcast thunderstorm days and lighter colors when the sun is high in the sky and bright. Wild Trout area is high right now and it is probably best to fish elsewhere.

The river below the Line St. bridge!


 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 9/11/17


Flows now at 26 cfs. Coming down every week now, but should start to settle soon. Try moving around and hitting any areas that appear to be fishy. Pockets, undercut banks, riffles are all good holding areas for trout here. Try dry fly and dropper combos along the far edges of the banks. Fish are eager to jump on whatever offering falls from the banks.


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 9/11/17

LADWP has brought the flows down to 35 cfs. It may take the fish awhile to re-establish themselves here as they swim up from below.

Season open year around

 East Walker River 9/11/17

River now at 302 cfs. Starting to approach near perfect flows in most areas, but still running fast and deep. Lots of weight needed to get flies down in the deep and fast water. Focus on the slower water and transition zones along the current lines. Lots of pressure in the “Miracle Mile” section, but lots of open water downstream.  Good quality rainbows and browns showing up and biting on heavily weighted nymph rigs. San Juan worms, Parallel Punk Perch, midges, PT’s, and Copper John’s are all good flies right now. We are now taking trip reservations for the East Walker. Book your trip here.


Ryan Hambel hooked up to a rainbow that hit a drifted nymph pattern!


Ryan with his catch!

Bridgeport Reservoir 9/11/17

The Reservoir has been producing some quality fish this past week. The creek channel inlets have been the place to be. Hanging “Assassins, Punk Perch, Leeches, Midges, and Agent Orange patterns” have been fooling a lot of fish. It is great to see this place make such a strong return. All facilities are open, Chase at the marina has boats available. Water level is high, but has been dropping at a decent pace.

Mitch and Madison Kelly fished with Tom Loe and scored some real beasts!

Lots of double hookups for these two that day!

Madison with a fat rainbow!

And yet another quality fish from the Res!



Jurassic Pond 9/11/17


This is great place to fish if you’re interested in hooking up to jumbo trout. Jumbo means you have a shot at connecting with a 15-20 lber at any given moment. These are wild fish with some of the best colors you can imagine on a trout. Call or fill out one of our trip request forms here to get on the pond!

Check out some of the recent fish we’ve had the pleasure of netting:

Rob Souza and Priscilla Pulido are no strangers to this place or to these fish!

Check out this bad girl brown that Priscilla bested!

Joel Carrizosa with a nice fat wild rainbow from Jurassic Pond!

Joel Carrizosa and daughter Chanel with a rainbow that probably can’t fit any more spots on its body!









***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. Parallel Punk Perch has been the hottest fly on Crowley Lake recently.  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.   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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