A Fish Report for 6/16/18

Sierra Drifters Guide Service

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.


Fish’N Conditions 6/16/18

We are getting very close to summer as the last week of spring approaches. Warm and breezy weather has been the norm and a slight cool down coming out of the weekend will drop temperatures a few degrees for a couple of days, with temperatures climbing back up through the remainder of the week. We are happy to announce that all lakes and marinas are now ice free and the road into the San Joaquin River is now open as road repairs have been completed. Bridgeport and Crowley Lakes have been giving up some nice quality fish. Callibaetis and Damselflies have drawn the fish into the weed flats and creek channels. East Walker River flows up and down still and expected to go up as Bridgeport Reservoir fills. Silver and Grant Lakes giving up some bigger fish now as water temps start to level off. Basin Lakes in the Mammoth area are all producing decent sized fish. Best at the inlets and drop offs. Hot Creek excellent during the aquatic insect hatches. Good conditions currently, as the runoff brings in more water. Upper Owens river has steady action on school sized trout eager to take dry flies in the afternoons and evenings. Find the clean water above the tributaries for best results. Middle Owens flows have been coming down with lots of water coming in from Bishop Creek. Better fishing above the tributary, but still high for wading access. 



***We are currently updating, and improving some pages on the website. There may be temporary issues as we work on the site. You can always contact us at 760-935-4250, or email at driftfish1@gmail.com. 

Sierra Drifters is a guide service based near Mammoth Lakes, CA. There is no retail shop to visit.

Crowley Lake 6/16/18

Fish are now moving into McGee Bay and the North arm in solid numbers. The big fish are on the feed and sipping midges, mayflies, damselflies, and leeches. It has been a day on and day off kind of thing around here. Some days the bite is on and other days you have to move around, change depth and bugs, and possibly locations. We have been getting fish from 6′ out to 18′. The algae is starting to get going in various areas of the lake. The warm weather, coupled with high levels of nitrogen and phosphorous coming in from the Owens channel will produce a solid bloom here in the coming weeks. Good patterns have been our #16 Level Crystal Leech,#16 Parallel Assassin Light and Dark, #16 Parallel Punk Perch, and #18 Crystal Tiger Midge.

Check out some of our recent catches here:

Tom Nagel with a nice rainbow from the McGee Bay shallows! We had a fun morning out there Tom!

Tom with another nice bow while fishing with Doug Dolan!

Jeff Peterson fished with Jerry and scored this sweet rainbow!

Jerry did the holding honors on this cutthroat for Bethany Wolf-Stuth!

John Seeds got this wide bodied rainbow while fishing with Jerry!

87 year old Bill Wolfe made the trip out from Arizona and fished with newest SD guide Hanzo Grotewold to score this fat brown!

Bridgeport Reservoir 6/16/18 

Conditions on the reservoir have been perfect. Swarms of callibaetis, an abundance of midges in all sizes, leeches, immature chubs, and growing numbers of dragon and damselflies. As the water warms in the lake, the fish are heading toward the cooler water of the channels. The flats and the trenches are all holding fish, and much like Crowley, some days they are heavy on the feed and other days it slows down some. The quality here has been great. A good mix of fish sizes with some really nice models making a showing. We are fishing here regularly now so contact us to book a trip on this spectacular reservoir. Level Crystal Leeches, #12-18 Copper Tiger Midges, Parallel Punk Perch, and Zebra midges have been go to patterns.

Check out some of our recent catches here:

Brett Kennedy fished with Hanzo Grotewold and got this painted up rainbow!

Hans did some scouting himself and got into them as well!

Hanzo with a fat rainbow out of the “Res!”

Tom Loe took out Mark Joslin for this stunning brown!

Hanzo got everyone on some nice ones out of here. Here’s Chase Brown with a overweight rainbow!

Tom Loe guided owner/operator of Ventura Sportfishing Mr. Greg Ewart to some nice ones!


Middle Owens River (Bishop Area) 6/16/18

Flows coming down here but Crowley Lake is still rising. It shouldn’t be too long now before the LADWP has to start letting water out of the lake and thus increasing flows on the river. Bishop Creek has a lot of water coming down and this will make the areas below Line St. very difficult to fish until the river recedes some. It is fishable above the bridge but foot access is extremely limited. The previous winter’s growth along the banks has made it tough for walking and wading and that is why accessing this river by boat is the best way to fish here. We fish with sinking tip lines and streamer patterns to get our flies down to the fish. If we see a substantial decrease in flows we may start drifting here again, but in the meantime there are better fish catching opportunities.




Upper Owens River 6/16/18

Some school sized fish are gathering above and below the Benton Bridge. Good afternoon dry fly action here when the wind is not blowing a gale. The eddies along the backsides of the deep pools around the slower bends have concentrated numbers of smaller fish willing to take a dry fly. Fish with egg patterns and nymphs along the undercut banks for some single larger model fish. 

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. We walk and wade guide here. During winter we will access the UO with snowmobiles.


San Joaquin River 6/16/18

The road to Red’s Meadow is now open. USFS states they are closing the Devil’s Postpile campground this year to limit traffic. This will be good for fisherman and hikers and will leave more room along the river for fishing. Flows currently at 239 cfs and dropping as the runoff has peaked. We will have a better report on this area soon as we make our first trips down here. If you’ve fished here in the past you know what a fun river this is with a dry fly rig and a light rod. These fish will hit almost any dry fly in the right size and one that is properly presented. They are beautiful wild fish with the occasional hatchery fish in the mix. Fish the slow pools and the pocket water and make sure to get your line mended well before your fly enters your target zone for success.

*Tom Loe, Doug Rodricks, Doug Dolan, and Hans Grotewold are under permit from the Inyo National Forest Service to guide San Joaquin River.





Hot Creek 6/16/18

This area has been a fun place to fish when you want to change gears from the stillwater fishing. Excellent mayfly, midge, and caddis hatches happening daily. The fish on Hot Creek are known for their willingness to take a dry fly and a dry/dropper rig fished along the edges, seams, and in the riffles and pools can make for a fun day. Once the runoff settles and the water becomes clear, sight fishing to holding fish can become an everyday thing, especially during the summer months. 

This is a year around fishery with special regs in place. We walk and wade guide here.*Tom Loe, Doug Rodricks, Doug Dolan, and Hans Grotewold are under permit from the Inyo National Forest Service to guide Hot Creek.



East Walker River 6/16/18 

Flows still fluctuating here. 312 cfs as of report time. You can expect an increase here soon, as Bridgeport Reservoir continues to fill. Try fishing the slower deeper pools and slower moving areas of the river. Use plenty of weight to get your flies down and streamers pulled through the deeper sections can be effective. Crossing and wading may still be tough at the current flow rate. Lots of big fish spread out through the river.  

Take a look at this brownzilla that Rick Viole managed after a 22 minute battle! Doug Dolan was on the net and the guidance on this one!

Martin Loessner with a “pig” of brown!






Grant/Silver Lakes 6/16/18

Bigger fish have been showing around both lakes. Warmer water has put more trout on the feed and they are responding well to nymphs and streamers. There have been some good evening hatches with fish sipping midges and mosquitos on the surface. Try 9′ leaders with #18-20 paramidges and griffith’s gnats for the surface action. Go with small copper john’s , Pt’s , and midges when going subsurface or hung under an indicator.

We use our state of the art center console “fish magnets” to guide Grant & Silver Lakes.


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, & Malibu Fish’N Tackle in Thousand Oaks.

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

Sierra Drifters Guide Service © is trademarked & copyright issued May 4th 2013. No part of this website may be reproduced, duplicated, or distributed without direct consent from Tom Loe.