Hot weather seems to have consumed the country these past couple of weeks. We are managing to stay cool in the eastern sierra with the high altitude breezes and occasional rain shower. A dry and windy front came through the area over the last couple of days and warmer weather is in store for the coming week. Fishing continues to be good on Crowley Lake, the kids are out of school, and vacation planning for most is in full swing. We have been lucky to get the youngsters on some great fish this month. Water temps are warming up in all waters and we are in the midst of a drought summer. Most creeks and rivers will be running at low flows as we slide into summer. Water temps can be harmful to the fish, so care must be taken when releasing fish. Lower Owens River is holding at 300 cfs and weather is scorching in the hundreds down there. Walker River is holding at 55 cfs and flows don’t look to increase anytime soon. San Joaquin River is now accessible and another week of so of decent flows should prevail over the trickle it will soon become. Upper Owens river fishing has been slow, but Hot Creek Hatchery is now back online for scheduled fish planting, just in time for the hopper hatch. Hot Creek having excellent trico hatches in the mornings along with caddis and midges.
Hot Creek is still fishing well at various times of the day. Look for some killer trico mayfly hatches in the mid-morning. Caddis are abundant now, so pupa patterns imitating them are working well. Smaller caddis larva patterns, SJ Worms, and midges, assassins light, and Pheasant tails can get you into fish.
The Upper Owens River is now flowing at 57 cfs and the first few baby grasshoppers are starting to show. We are still awaiting fish plants from Hot Creek Hatchery which was shut down from stocking until they were cleared from a bacterial infection. In the meantime small flies are what’s working for the small resident wild trout. Think sizes 20-24 and concentrate your drifts in the riffle water and undercut banks.
Crowley Lake continues to deliver the best quality and quantity of fish. Deeper water this time of year has been best, but fish are starting to show in 16-17′. Every day has been different and the fly selection has been changing daily too. Be sure to have a good selection of midges, damselflies, and assassins in both light and dark on hand to find the pattern they want. Damselflies are now showing all over the lake. The Sacramento Perch have begun the spawn, but you can still observe some pre-spawn behavior as they cluster in tight groups at suspended depths. Best patterns have been the #16 – #18 SD Chironomidge, #16 – 20 Tungsten Zebra, #16 Midge Larva, #12 -18 Blood Midge, #14 -18 Grey Water, #16 – 20 Red Butt Midge Dark Head and Glass Head, #16 -20 Red Rib Midge Glass Head, #18 Gillie Light and Dark, #16 – 20 Copper Tiger midge, #16 Broken Back Copper Tiger Midge, #14 – 16 Blood Midge, and #16 -18 Mud Candy.
Lower Owens River flows have dropped to 300cfs range which is still tough for wading. Scorching hot days in the Bishop area have set in now, and the best bite windows are early morning and late evening. There has been an explosion of ticks down here, so take care not to let your pets run around on the banks and make sure to check yourself after walking around here. Fish are spreading out and holding along the edges now.
The San Joaquin River is now open. Parking is limited currently. Flows should remain nice for fishing here for a few more weeks, but water is dropping rapidly, and the run-off has come and gone Small dry flies and dropper nymphs have been getting attention from the small wild fish down here. Fish are holding in all types of water, so fish it all.
Michelle crushed the fish with Seth as her guide and got some real stand outs like this rainbow trout.
Two Bug Doug guided George to this nice cutthroat trout.
Doug R guided Jesse to this chunky rainbow trout.
Scott also fished with Doug R for this nice brown trout.
Jerry getting underway with clients to the hot spot for the day.
Chris fished with Doug Dolan for a nice rainbow trout.
Seth put Linda on some good ones like this fat rainbow trout.
Two Bug got Blake on some nice ones like this sweet brown trout.
Kevin fished with Doug R for some nice ones like this rainbow trout.
Steve got some nice ones with Seth like this hot brown trout.
Jake got some nice cutthroat trout like this one with Doug R.
Noah with a nice brown trout while fishing with Seth.
Larry got some good ones with Doug R like this rainbow trout.
Ken got some good ones like this fat cutthroat trout.
Jerry guided Jill and Mike to some nice ones like this colorful brown trout.
Devin guided young Luke to this chunky brown trout.
Zach also fished with Devin and is hooked up to a big one.
Zach with a nice brown trout.
Seth guided Kevin and Brett to some fun fishing which included this nice brown trout.
Dave fished with Jerry and scored with this shiny and colorful brown trout.
Jakob fished with Seth and scored this nice rainbow trout.
Shannon fished with Jerry for this nice rainbow trout.
Jakob with an awesome rainbow trout while fishing with Two Bug Doug.
Karl fished with Jerry for this hog rainbow trout.
Hans got little Julia on some good ones like this awesome cutthroat trout.
Richard showing off a healthy rainbow trout while fishing with Seth.
Linda fished with Two Bug Doug and scored this fat rainbow trout.